May 4, 2001 Originally at Battleground: Halo.

Originally at Battleground: Halo.
Boy, E3 sure is close. Here's a short list of some of the things that happened this week, plus a few observations.

  • Lots of tiny bug fixes and modifications. Vehicles no longer roll forever, guys who've been killed on the jeep no longer float in mid-air, that sort of thing.

  • Some levels have been re-imported for speed and visibility improvements.

  • The Pelican and the Covenant dropship are working in-game, and now have ground effects (i.e. when taking off they displace lots of dust, etc.)

  • Much work has been done to make the game faster in general. Our framerates have improved considerably, a change in the bitmap storage format allows the hardware to access that data more quickly, and thanks to some Bernie Magic we're now able to dump many more people on-screen.

  • Bernie is also working on energy shaders for a plasma effect (already in the game and looking very good, though Bernie says they'll look much better in the end), another pass on the volumetric shader and a brand-new shader for the HUD.

  • Chucky made some major improvements in the auto-aiming.

  • We now have multiple-colored cyborgs for net games, making it much easier to figure out who's who. The hot pink cyborg is called Chucky by some.

  • When you shoot objects on the ground, they spin.

  • Marty and Jay have been recording lots of voice actors this week. I sat in on the Cortana recording sessions and shot some video, which will probably find its way out sooner or later.

  • A Halo Moment: tossing a grenade at a fully-shielded Covenant Elite (whose shields protect them from grenade damage), exchanging fire with it as it flies through the air, then seeing it die from falling damage when it lands.

  • Another Halo Moment: grenading the Warthog and watching it cartwheel through the air before landing right-side-up, with driver and passenger dead but gunner miraculously alive.

  • One of the human crew models wears an oddly familiar green jumpsuit.

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