(Elium / Kasei - 2002-2005)
A demo for Elium in the form of the Kasei action combat test is available here
Videos: dynamic sky and clouds, view, combat, combat, aiming, aiming
Select screenshots: view distance, combat
Website (and more screenshots) can be found here
Elium itself was a typical pie-in-the-skie indie project that went (almost) nowhere. The spec included action combat, massive dynamic world, a partially dynamic plot, full physics integration, etc. By the time I was employed to work on Idyllon, we'd only completed the engine, basic world (physics, geoclipmap terrain, dynamic sky, etc) and the beginnings of combat - and all of that went into the last major development of Elium, the action combat test we called Kasei.
Kasei was an action combat demo designed to test Elium's combat systems and the general functioning of eEntity in a controlled, completed environment. It included AI controlled enemies, full audio/music, fully integrated physics engine, ragdoll, HDR/bloom, dual renderpaths (DX7 and PS2.0), and a basic implementation of the intended Elium combat system. The demo linked above was the final version of Kasei, and what we submitted to a gamedev.net competition, where it made it past first-tier voting but ultimately lost to a few infinitely more polished games.
Elium and Kasei were where eEntity, the engine that would later power Idyllon and Wild Vines, was first born. It was built around Nebula Device 2, a rendering/kernel engine that at the time lacked any kind of game or higher level engine (it has since been updated with a game engine named "Mangalore," which bears no relation to eEntity). At the time of Elium and Kasei, eEntity's notable features included:
- low-level script integration (which is capable of almost every operation of which compiled eEntity is capable)
- dynamic run-time object assembly/disassembly by sum of pre-compiled eEntity "components"
- dynamic construction of entirely script-based components by way of components created to allow such
- geoclipmap-style LOD heightmap terrain (capable of extremely long view ranges, as seen in Kasei and test shots)
- modern HDR-style rendering, positional sound, skinnable gui, etc
- ODE physics integration (ragdoll, physically accurate player movement and force application, fast-moving projectiles, etc)
- a custom animation system capable of blending any number of animations on any collection of bones in the skeleton independently (controlled through a user/artist-friendly system)
- a completely dynamic gradient sky and light flare system with weather
- a completely dynamic cloud system (in which the clouds morph as they travel across the sky, all controllable from completely clear to 100% clouded).