Treyarch defends Call of Duty game engine

Design director David Vonderhaar says he is baffled by fan issues with game engine, says "It runs at 60 [frames per second]...what exactly is there to be upset about?"

Treyarch designer director David Vonderhaar is baffled by the issues fans may have with the Call of Duty game engine. Speaking to the Official Xbox Magazine, Vonderhaar said the Call of Duty: Black Ops II engine is replete with new features and does not resemble any older iteration.

"People like to talk about the engine, but the truth of the matter is that this isn't like something that was invented six years ago," he said. "At this point that engine doesn't resemble anything like any engine. We've ripped out the UI system; the rendering and the lighting are all new, the core gameplay systems are all new."

"To me, it's like I never really understood," Vonderhaar added. "It runs at 60 [frames-per-second] and it's gorgeous. What exactly is there to be upset about with the engine?"

Vonderhaar's comments follow a statement from Treyarch studio head Mark Lamia, who said in May that he is aware fans want a "better-looking" Call of Duty game. He claimed that the studio did not need to build an all-new engine to achieve this, but rather continue to tweak the existing engine to offer new features, like lighting advancements.

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0 comments
chessmaniac
chessmaniac

I have a very capable PC--GTX 580SLI. I have that config because I appreciate high end graphics. I have played B3, Crysis 2, Metro 2033, and other such titles. Yet, my fav online game is still CoD4, and I find the graphics to be pretty decent. I actually like the gun models in that game better than those seen in many of the newer game engines, and the maps are very good too There is too much emphasis on graphics over the last few years to the exclusion of decent game play, and story telling. That said, the CoD franchise has been equally guilty of offering up lackluster short single  player campaigns as of late as well. 

Given the choice, I would rather have a great game (long single player campaign with good story and character development, and good online play with dedicated servers) with the present CoD engine, than a mediocre game with stellar graphics. Both at once would be the ideal, but given a good game to begin with, I do not find the current CoD engine to be a problem. I would much rather play Hl2 for a second time with it's 2005 graphics than MoH 2010 with the Frostbite engine for a second time because MoH was so short it felt like a rip off. The multi player was not very good either, whereas HL2 online was awesome.

I just bought CoDMW3 on disc--(for $20.--that's why I wait. I actually played the Beta for MW3 when it came out over a year ago). I got MW3 mainly for the single player, as online has no dedicated servers--so I will  just stay with CoD4 for multi player. Hopefully the story for MW3 is  better than CoDMW2 which was a let down.

EggEmperor
EggEmperor

Saying graphics is better than gameplay is like saying that a painting is more fun and worth your money than a board game. Entertaining gameplay > Flashy graphics. You probably wouldn't understand this since most of you seem to have been born after the year 2000. You're all also technically saying, "This game is brim-filled with content and there's lots to do offline and on! BUT DE GRAFIKS AER CRAPY 0/10 DIS GAEM SUKS."

abroche
abroche

Really ... i mean what it is called Call of copy and paste engine any game developer especially a designer director who say our games run at 60 FPs what it is the deal about it and not looking at your final product i will personally kick him out the company  there no chance in hell they engine can match frost bite 2, cryengine 3 , hell even unity can do much better stuff than they engine an outdated modded UDK 2 engine   remember GAME QUALITY > FRAMES PERSECOND

banzaigtv
banzaigtv

I bet Frostbite 2 and CryEngine 3 are laughing at Activision right now.

thetravman
thetravman

With this engine being around for many years now, I have to wonder that it is because the hardware is tapped out. It cannot display much better visuals without hindering the frames per second. We just have to wait and see what IW or Treyarch come up with next generation. I love 60fps gameplay. I'd prefer that then slightly better visuals.

psownsxbox4life
psownsxbox4life

i still think COD is the best 1st person shooter out there as far and game play and over all entertainment. but the graphics are definitely starting to lack and until they stop making a BILLION dollars per iteration of the game, they probably arent going to change anything drastically.

madasivad
madasivad

 "It runs at 60 fps". They've been playing this song for too long. The games still looks like ass. Hit detection sucks too.

banzaigtv
banzaigtv

Just because COD is running on an outdated graphics engine doesn't mean it's not fun to play. It caters to a wide spectrum of gaming platforms, including the Wii and low-end PCs. If you want a game with a better single-player mode geared towards high-end PCs, then play Crysis 2.

Someguy1212
Someguy1212

this just shows that they know that their game looks like crap but since they make so much moeny off of 13 year old kids they dont need to make it better. COD is a game that Id maybe plop a dollar or two in a machine and play not plop $120 (+$60 a year for XBL) just to get camped in and play the same thing every year.  

nuke1984
nuke1984

Its the same game every year.......... that's the problem.  I bet pong runs at even higher fps, but how big is the fan base for PONG?  Innovation makes companies have COMPETITION, COMPETITION creates better games. Its like Madden. They have no competition in the NFL, NHL type games, so they release the same crap year after year after year.  COD is the same way

Trickymaster
Trickymaster

The engine can be ratchet as hell. What impressed me since CoD 4 are the animations. Many studios still don't get them to be as fluid and believable as with this engine. I'm looking at you, 343 Industries.

Rakou
Rakou

"At this point that engine doesn't resemble anything like any engine..."

 

Wasn't the same thing said about MW3? And look how that ended up being...

NoahRoalson
NoahRoalson

No one is complaining about the engine itself....  We are simply ready for at least a decent update to it.  There is no problem with it, but seeing the same animations and using controls with the same "feel" does get a little old after a while-seriously.

The_Mighty_KELP
The_Mighty_KELP

People are complaining about the CoD engine? That's news to me. Well, Mr. Vonderhaar, you have my assurance that it's perfectly fine as it is. If only we could sprint longer than 7 seconds, though...

LordRikerQ
LordRikerQ

You'll see how quick they are praising a new engine when the PS4 and Xbox 720 comes out. What they mean to say is it runs and looks great on current consoles so there is no need to upgrade it so PC users alone could have even better graphics.

AlexFili
AlexFili

It's unfair to compare Call of Duty to FIFA. All First-Person Shooter games re-use a lot of things it's true, but it's to keep old fans happy while providing the optimal gaming experience for all players. They do innovate when it comes to the important things.

 

Compare the different Counter Strike versions for example, they all play the same but vary in graphical style.

skornedwarrior
skornedwarrior

Well I see both viewpoints, the Devs and fans of COD want the game to run at 60FPS for the fast fluid feel that COD is known for. But to get this 60FPS lock they need to keep the graphics and physics at a level below most shooters like (Halo, Killzone, BF3) since those all run at a 30FPS goal.

 

 I don't think you could have really seen a COD with graphics or even physics much better than it has tbh, the consoles arent up to it.  Next gen you'll see a significant leap.

lamprey263
lamprey263

IMO the engine is fine visually, but visually what gets me most is this game plays way to fast, like it's on turbo speed mode or something

 

if anything needs working on its the AI, I don't mind aggressive smart AI, but COD AI feels cheap and seems to have an awareness of you and only you, if I'm behind cover every bad guy is shooting at me and me only while teammates will be out in the open and none of the enemy AI is trying to hurt them, that gets kind of annoying

darkeyez81
darkeyez81

Treyarch and Infinity Ward: Faithful believers of the phrase: "if it ain't broke, don't fix it".

And why it ain't broke? Because people still buy it.

JIMDOG4442002
JIMDOG4442002

So its pretty much the same engine but tweaked ,still the same engine lol.

Blitzkrieg129
Blitzkrieg129

The fact that it runs at 60 FPS on consoles means it's outdated. Simple as that. 

xXxIRyanxXx
xXxIRyanxXx

A lot of words to say were to lazy and we don't want to spend the money to make a new engine.

maxwell97
maxwell97

I'd say it's a valid point, at least as far as multi-platform console games go.  I have yet to see one that looks significantly better than CoD4.  Better, yes, but not so much so that it's worth a framerate drop in a multiplayer FPS.

thequickshooter
thequickshooter

no it's the same engine since world at war and i can see it

retrodax
retrodax

I'm just reading between the lines here, but to me the comments here are indicative of a gaming community that's crying out for quality.  Quality visuals, quality storyline, quality campaign.  Treyarch shouldn't be baffled.  They should be rising to the challenge - that's the only way they will get better.

Vorheez
Vorheez

Still no bullet drop.....Or am I wrong?

 

 

valensim
valensim

I'm fine with the graphics, they still look great. I just want a 10h+ Singleplayer Story... I'm looking at u Modern Warfare.

ChiefFreeman
ChiefFreeman

The character models always looked really good, and the way they used baked lightng to show light and shadow ndetail on them as they walked through corridors, etc always looked nice.    most of what looked blah was the lack  of environmental detail and physics.

Themistocles88
Themistocles88

 @EggEmperor I couldn't have said it better myself. I can also pretty much guarantee that if they started over and "revolutionized" the game like everyone supposedly wants, everyone would still be on here complaining about how they "messed up" CoD. I just don't understand people's need to complain when there is nothing to complain about. If you don't like what they are doing with the game, don't buy it.

abroche
abroche

 @psownsxbox4life if you think CoD is the best FPS game o far my firend let tell you are a blindless fanboi CoD is the most horrible game ever well since MW2 from that the rest is pure bulcrap all copy and paste , no improvement .... I am a CoD hater and i aprove this post

TheDarkSpot
TheDarkSpot

 @banzaigtv

 Personally, I enjoyed every Call of Duty's single-player a lot more than Crysis 2's.

amrashrafbakr
amrashrafbakr

 @Someguy1212 Dude, they ripped it all of and brought it back again. Stop saying it is for 13 year old because it is not. It is not the same thing this time. The graphics are only the same. Everything else is replaced with something new.

deadmonkey76
deadmonkey76

 @nuke1984 looks like every other fps needs serious improvement then from your statement they have no competition

thetravman
thetravman

 @Rakou

 What are you comparing it to? MW3's engine to MW2's engine?...you know, the same engine. <_<

Sykosis86
Sykosis86

 @Blitzkrieg129 So just to reiterate you're saying that if a game on a console runs 60 Frames Per Second is some how indication that it's old?

 

If that's the truth that means that Battlefield 3 is old on PC and outdated on consoles. Call Of Duty has ran 60 Frames at least since 4 and has been consistent with both it's PC and Console releases. 

 

Keep in mind that the industry standard is 60 FPS and most studios out right kill themselves trying to shoot for it. Sometimes that kind of performance isn't unnecessary so they settle for 30 FPS.  

 

The fact that they can say that this game runs at 60 FPS speaks to how well the engine is. Simple as that.

orangesonic
orangesonic

 @retrodax

 they won`t because kids will buy COD anyway... just make money without much effort thats the Treyarch business now

amrashrafbakr
amrashrafbakr

 @Vorheez Dude, are you now comparing a large spaced are like the ones in Battlefield to the close quarters combat in COD? If there was bullet drop, it won't make an effect either. 

orangesonic
orangesonic

 @valensim

 i think it will be like 2-3hours... hahahahaha... much of it being cutscenes to make kids say WOW

TheDarkSpot
TheDarkSpot

 @ChiefFreeman

 The motion capture also looked best in Call of Duty for some reason. Probably because of the great framerate?

 

Rakou
Rakou

 @thetravman 

Call of Duty has been using the same engine for 13 years, the Quake engine (as far as i can remember)

abroche
abroche

 @Sykosis86  @Blitzkrieg129  first BF3 engine is not old is a redisigned frostbite 1 engine 

secondly- the diference betwen 60 frames to 30 frames is on the quality of the game, better textures , better AI, Psychics, much better multiplayer experience ,

 

and thirdly- a true 60 frames per second games are not FPS, CoD is a Cash cow as simple as that

 

.... i ma a CoD hater and i aprove this post

Blitzkrieg129
Blitzkrieg129

 @Sykosis86 No, that's not at all what I'm saying. I'm saying that if it's able to run at 60 fps on a console, it means that it's not exactly very impressive visually. The fact that it's not very impressive visually would imply that it's running on an outdated engine, or one that just isn't very impressive, considering it's a AAA game. Consoles are old, and graphics are limited by the hardware it's being rendered on.

 

BF3 is an amazing game on PC because it's running on an amazing engine. It kinda sucks in comparison on consoles. Current consoles struggle to run games well on that engine because it's not meant to be run on outdated hardware. 

 

Just because you're able to get 60 FPS out of low textures, no AA, and low resolution doesn't mean it's an impressive engine. It actually means it's pretty outdated. The game engine is meant to run well on consoles, and that's it. The fact that it doesn't look very much more impressive on high-end PCs is also an indication that the engine is outdated. 

amrashrafbakr
amrashrafbakr

 @orangesonic  @valensim Actually it will be much more with adding the strike force missions. And it will be much like a sandbox environment. A lot to do added with non-linearity.

abroche
abroche

 @Rakou  @thetravman it is but it is not quake is a moded UDK 2 engine from Modern Warfare 1 to the future

orangesonic
orangesonic

 @Blitzkrieg129  @Sykosis86

 some people just don`t understand that... consoles are an outdated PC for many years now btw... there is no way a PS3 or Xbox 360 could run Frostbite 2 in 100% and get 30Fps... but COD is using an outdated engine... the dev just said it already... it is a tweaked version of the same engine Cod uses since 7 years ago