CK3 Dev Diary #35 - User Testing Before Release

CK3 Dev Diary #35 - User Testing Before Release

  • Crusader Kings III Available Now!

    The realm rejoices as Paradox Interactive announces the launch of Crusader Kings III, the latest entry in the publisher’s grand strategy role-playing game franchise. Advisors may now jockey for positions of influence and adversaries should save their schemes for another day, because on this day Crusader Kings III can be purchased on Steam, the Paradox Store, and other major online retailers.


    Real Strategy Requires Cunning

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Riamus

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Haha yeah we're gonna be in-game! But we are scattered all over, so finding us all might be hard :p

Are you split between the two start dates or all on one start date? And is there something that would let us know we found one of your characters? Those here who have been around the forums a long time probably have some idea of what they are looking for to know if they find a PDX character, but I doubt I'd know without "help". I'd be interested in seeing how many I find if there's a way to know who I'm looking for. And I don't want to ask after release because the answer is likely to also include where to find them and that defeats the fun of the "hunt." :)
 
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View attachment 603896

I personally don't see anything overly uncanny about CK3 as compared to real life. It looks like someone used a real world face as the basis for a CG model. Compare the prototype to other cartoonish styles, on the same token, and I don't see how it would have come out looking particularly good. Particularly for a game as gritty as Crusader Kings.
1596042136322.png
Need to improve CK3 hair. It looks like she is wearing a hat instead of hair.
 
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Haha yeah we're gonna be in-game! But we are scattered all over, so finding us all might be hard :p
I'm going to go out on a limb and guess that not just over the world but also between the 2 start dates?

Will all the vanity characters be landless like Hanna? or will some start with a county title when there is no historical data for who held a given title at that date?

Lastly, I smell an achievement; Grant title to x number of vanity characters! Am I right?
 
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Olden Weiss

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Need to improve CK3 hair. It looks like she is wearing a hat instead of hair.
1596042901226.png 1596042920538.png 1596042941240.png1596043145816.png

The crown braid is actually a timeless real life style.
 
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More than the hairstyle, I feel it's more how the border between the hair and the skin is very solid and straight in all the images shown so far - especially noticeable in beards. Might look a bit better if the edge was a little more jagged or blended at the roots. But this is more a talk that has no place in this thread, but the one before it.
 
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More than the hairstyle, I feel it's more how the border between the hair and the skin is very solid and straight in all the images shown so far - especially noticeable in beards. Might look a bit better if the edge was a little more jagged or blended at the roots. But this is more a talk that has no place in this thread, but the one before it.

Yeah. CK3 is pretty photoreal except some of the finer details like how the skin reacts to reflections but majorly with the hair not having anisotropic reflections and the finer strand variations.

aaa9531fa0e655da118a2b19006f1c11.jpg

Obviously it's a bit too glossy here but it looks like a lot of CK3 stopped at nr 2 but substituted a lot of the details going on in the hair with some type of handpainted texture instead.

R7ZbjPtc3CYf46a3XXEt9YBzXQ3-l5qvPkkWP_YEvNk.png

Vanity%20Character.jpg
 
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We will all be "Users" of CK III soon enough. Can hardly wait.
 
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Olden Weiss

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Yeah. CK3 is pretty photoreal except some of the finer details like how the skin reacts to reflections but majorly with the hair not having anisotropic reflections and the finer strand variations.

aaa9531fa0e655da118a2b19006f1c11.jpg

Obviously it's a bit too glossy here but it looks like a lot of CK3 stopped at nr 2 but substituted a lot of the details going on in the hair with some type of handpainted texture instead.

Excellent observation, and as many of us know, some of the later steps are where GPU resources really start stepping up. Particularly step 5. For one or even several dozen hairs, this wouldn't even be noteworthy. In Crusader Kings, however, where we're constantly jumping from portrait to portrait, we'd be like to notice our video cards starting to labor as new renders were drawn for new meshes and lighting models over and over again.

I won't say it would've been impossible to give us the "whole shebang", but... I wager with Crusader Kings featuring thousands of characters for us to flip through, real-time yearly changes to the diffuse overlay to reflect aging, and the fact that the game's engine most likely isn't built for such things in the way that, say, the Frostbite or Unreal engines are... It wouldn't have been an easy feat to make that work smoothly on every type of system. I'm certainly willing to take the compromise we've been given with regards to hair. In my experience, photorealistic hair is the single most resource-intensive element of a human character to render.
 
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Riamus

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Excellent observation, and as many of us know, some of the later steps are where GPU resources really start stepping up. Particularly step 5. For one or even several dozen hairs, this wouldn't even be noteworthy. In Crusader Kings, however, where we're constantly jumping from portrait to portrait, we'd be like to notice our video cards starting to labor as new renders were drawn for new meshes and lighting models over and over again.

I won't say it would've been impossible to give us the "whole shebang", but... I wager with Crusader Kings featuring thousands of characters for us to flip through, real-time yearly changes to the diffuse overlay to reflect aging, and the fact that the game's engine most likely isn't built for such things in the way that, say, the Frostbite or Unreal engines are... It wouldn't have been an easy feat to make that work smoothly on every type of system. I'm certainly willing to take the compromise we've been given with regards to hair. In my experience, photorealistic hair is the single most resource-intensive element of a human character to render.

Agreed. I'm sure there was a point where PDX said that the increase minimum system requirements (i.e. lower sales) combined with the significant increase in resources necessary to add it to the game was not worth it. I'm sure they looked into it, but just decided to stick to "basic" hair. I know that with certain games, my GPU fan has to really pick up speed and CK3 may cause that even without the hair being realistic. With the realism, I'm sure it would be at max speed all the time. Granted, I don't have A/C, so my computer is hot in the summer even before playing games.

Personally, I think the hair art style works well enough. It could be better, absolutely. But I think it fits fine with the rest of the graphics. It doesn't look too jarring or out of place even though you can see that the quality isn't quite up to par with the rest of the character graphics. The original hair (and character) graphics, on the other hand, just look so out of place that I'd really have to love the gameplay in order to want to play the game because the character graphics would really have made me not want to play it. Certain games are fine with cartoon-style graphics. And certain games just don't work with them. For example, would you want Civ 6 style characters in a game like Assassin's Creed? They are okay in Civ 6 (though personally, I think they are only barely okay), but just are completely out of place in a game like AC or here with CK3. Overall, I like the graphics for CK3. I'll be very interested in putting the character graphics to the test once I have the game.
 
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It's nice to see someone acknowledge that QA exists.
 
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Haha yeah we're gonna be in-game! But we are scattered all over, so finding us all might be hard :p

So there should be an achievements to imprison them all.
Gotta catch ‘em all.
 
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And you know what? Most of them managed just fine, which isn’t really something I’m used to seeing when it comes to Paradox onboarding. New players loved that the tutorial used visual cues to guide them through menus and the suggestions helped them with an issue that many PDS titles have - What the heck do I do next?

Thats awesome. I love to see new players come into these games.
 
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Is there anything like clickstream data for tracking what interfaces folks use the most? Like, we can see through the data that a common pattern is clicking through these 4 sub-menu's, maybe this is a good action to raise to a more common/easy to use place?
 
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