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CryEngine 3 : What is your opinion?

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Grady Lorenzo, Apr 1, 2011.

  1. Grady Lorenzo

    Grady Lorenzo

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    Let's be honest, Unity is powerful, and I love it, but it is not the most powerful engine out there. So my team is looking at CryEngine 3, not as a replacement, but as an extension. So what is your opinion of CryEngine? And is there anything we should keep in mind?
     
  2. 2dfxman1

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    It's AWESOME. If you like dynamic lighting, easy to use tools and great performance, then it's for you. If you develop for mobiles, then not really.
     
  3. Frank Oz

    Frank Oz

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    How do you plan to extend Unity with it? It's really a case of going to be one or the other, as developing for both at the same time will be quite a headache.
     
  4. PrimeDerektive

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    Agreed, I'm not sure you could technically use it "as an extension", unless by "as an extension" you mean "as a possible replacement on a per-project basis".
     
  5. Grady Lorenzo

    Grady Lorenzo

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    Not an extension of Unity. An extension of the team, to be used alongside Unity as another tool.

    That, is what I meant, yes.
     
  6. dissidently

    dissidently

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    I wanted to weep when I saw Cryengine 3. Power. Flexibility. Lighting. oh, that lighting... all of it wasted. On yet another FFPS (F***ing first person shooter)

    "The last of the great 1st person shooter engines..." You'll tell your kid about it one day. That you were there, during Cryengine's birth, and swan-song. How Crysis1 brought your PC to its knees.

    That it created a mantra "...but does it play Crysis?"; you'll patiently explain. "...enthusiast settings...", you'll blither about this little chestnut of gaming colloquialism. Once held so dear in your heart. You'll prattle about it; as your son ignores you.

    He can barely make you out through a veritable room of thought controlled holographic's, couldn't care less, for it's what you don't see that controls him, as much as he controls it; all the sensory simulations running through him are real, in a chemical sense.
    -- "Dad", he thinks, "..quaint, in front of his 'flatscreen' all those years ago. Life must have been dull back then."

    You'll mention how Crysis 2 and CryEngine 3 somehow distilled Crysis... made it work on a console.

    Yet neglected DirectX 11.
     
  7. ant001

    ant001

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    amazing tools, curve editor is second to none. really nice information design. but as with all tools, they totally missed the point when it comes to interaction state.

    if your asking about the game itself, it was a bit whatever, even with really great modeling, seems the lighting was a bit on the weak side (great engine, crap lighting designer). love the game, loads of room to make something more emotional with the cryengine.
     
  8. returnString

    returnString

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    I think at present they're two engines with varying targets. That's not to say they couldn't target the same thing but I see CryENGINE as a much "heavier" engine for lack of a better word, whereas Unity is lightweight and better suited to certain types of game/platform (mobile, browser-based, etc). I can't compile a gameplay prototype for web release in under 2MB with CryENGINE for instance. At the same time, if I were developing an AAA shooter that needed* extremely shiny graphics, then Unity might not be my first port of call. I haven't seen a whole lot of Unity projects going in that direction however so I could be wrong there!

    *I'm aware the necessity of graphics is debatable!
     
  9. janpec

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    All i can say is that i guarantee you that in first day when Cryengine 3 indie is released their forums will explode.
     
  10. 2dfxman1

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    I want someone to make a great rpg in ce3. With day/night and stunning visuals and gameplay. S*** would be so immersive.
     
  11. dissidently

    dissidently

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    Has anyone seen the interface of cryengine 3? Or know what scripting language it uses?
     
  12. 2dfxman1

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    Interface is the same as cryengine 2. Aka sandbox.
    As for languages, it uses c++ and lua.
     
  13. tatoforever

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  14. bigkahuna

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    Impressive specs. I went ahead and sent a dev registration to see what more I can find out. As I said in the other thread, I suspect the licensing is likely not to be favorable for what I do, but it's worth investigating.
     
  15. ChaosWWW

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    All this rendering stuff sounds very exciting, the only problem is that cryengine 3 seems to basically completely abandon any sort of support for low end hardware, so if you were to theoretically make a game in cryengine 3 then it would have to be targeted toward high end pcs only. Still, very exciting stuff for that crowd.
     
  16. bigkahuna

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    In the graphics features specs that are linked to above, they show examples based on hardware spec categories "Low" through "Extreme High". According to that same document, the lowest PC spec is their category "High", whatever that means. For my purposes, it would be a benefit not to be tethered to what specs the lowest common denominator is capable of, I want it all. ;)
     
  17. 2dfxman1

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    Wrong. You can turn down the graphics. Unless you are aiming at pcs from year 2000.
     
  18. PrimeDerektive

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    I think the real question is, what do people think of the Frostbite 2 engine?
     
  19. Frank Oz

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    Dunno, but the Creation engine and Skyrim kinda piss over all of them for atmosphere. Yay Bethesda!

     
  20. Dreamora

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    So is there still a forward rendering fallback?
    Thought they went all deferred now which has its limit on GeForce 7600+ to perform reasonably even if you make it look like crap due to the fillrate hit and other requirements it brings along, which for casual machines means 1-3 years (due to onboard - on cpu GPUs and their unfillrate), for gamer machines 4-5 years.
    Still a pretty large userbase naturally but you won't get onto casual portals anymore potentially.


    I think CryEngine is some very fine piece of technology and the hardware is finally in an area where their approach with all dynamic becomes more than hardcore user useable. It definitely pays out of them to be there first and driving that way independent of the press it got them and the bad selling "sold tech demo flop" (Crysis with its 400k sales)
     
    Last edited: Apr 2, 2011
  21. ChaosMax

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    Check out Unigine at http://unigine.com/ download the heaven benchmark on the downloads page
    This looks as impressive as cryengine 3 and is cheaper I think

    +also supports Linux ; )
     
  22. Dreamora

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    Unigine only seems cheaper, Crytek is expected to offer a UDK alike licensing and then Unigine is not only more expensive but also not able to compete at least out of my view (it offers great eye candy, but the performance ... well it was not a part of DX11 benchmarks for quite some time for no reason)
     
  23. Unearthly

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    Where did you get 400k sales? It apparently sold 3 million copies and did in fact turn a profit.

    I only have experience modding with CryEngine 2, I just hope they provide a better separation between engine code and game code. Sometimes it seemed arbitrary which side some code got placed on.

    Still, I am eagerly looking forward to the free/indie version of CryEngine 3 supposedly coming this summer.
     
  24. Dreamora

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    Yes it turned into a profit but rather late and as far as I recall to a large degree due to the interest of the modding community etc once the price dropped.

    The 400k were the sales after the "normal timeframe" when game launches are measured (that were the numbers mentioned back then).
    At that point the "blockbusters" normally have million sales and that although it was graphically pretty advanced. OK to be fair, it was already in the days where graphic slutiness itself no longer sold and graphics was about the only thing to it, AI was half arsed, without a high end pc it looked worse than stuff you had already seen and at some point the tropical trip just gets on your nuts, none the less the only thing that back then and today can fight their tech face to face is the engine behind stalker. (UE is nice and has great fallback but can't fight towards the upper end if those two play out their muscles, frostbite has superb destruction among other things but graphically its even below UE at least as per frostbite2, we will see with BF3 if its going to shift again)

    I personally didn't get Crysis till the point where Steam sold the crysis + crysis warhead bundle at 50% along a wednesday sale, at a fraction of what crysis cost at launch and I assume that I'm by far not the only one that bought it at a point where the win for them was no way up to the "full" again.
     
  25. ChaosWWW

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    I actually did read the paper and they said that crysis 2's lowest option was "high", which was roughly equivalent to the consoles. So if that is your lowest setting, then you are alienating a few people. I saw the crysis screenshots but those are from crysis 1 using cryengine 2 and right after that they talked about how they changed that for cryengine 3. I dunno, maybe I misread it but that's what I got from that. Don't get me wrong, I'll be the first to admit that cryengine is by far the best engine out there when it comes to graphics, and if graphics are your major concern then I'd definitely say switch to that once it goes indie.
     
  26. Dreamora

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    If its equivalent to consoles my estimate on GF7600 / X1600 was pretty good actually as the PS3 sits on a modified X1950 and the XBox on what the hell was crossed for it but its the same generation too though sitting on the first unified shader unit hardware before the GF8 series launched.

    If thats really the low end its a pretty reasonable technology cause devs using such monsters normally don't target house wifes etc, more the at least "partially gaming interested" users and those sit at least on that, normally even higher due to the DX10 lack (and more important CUDA lack) on the GF7 / X 1xxx series.
     
  27. tatoforever

    tatoforever

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    CryEngine3 is fully defferred, lots of stuff being deffered (not just lighting), projectors, reflections and they have lots of fancy screen space shaders (sub-surface scaterign and an ultra awesome sefl-shadowing technique which is also screen space). But what is really awesome is that using low-end settings, doesn't disable anything, it just reduces the amount of details and resolution for effects. For example, you'll still have soft-shadows(but not on all lights), only few lights, you'll still have SSAO but a bit cheaper, same for HDR, SSGI, but with lower ress.
    I've tested Crysis2 on med settings with my old laptop (dual core) and geforce 9400. Indoor levels i got an average 30fps and outdoor 20-25fps. Though, in Crysis1, lowering the settings, turned off effects. In Crysis2, lowering the settings retains all shaders and effects but reduces the amount of details and resolution, awesome. So yeah, CryEngine3 is really really optimized for high end an very old hardware.
     
  28. tatoforever

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    Based on CryEngine3 papers, the consoles spec is the equivalent of High setting on PC, which i've tried and theres almost no difference compared to Extreme spec.
     
  29. nikko

    nikko

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    CryEngine 3 is great for doing FPS.
    If you want to do something else, then it is not the best choice.

    Unity 3D is designed from the ground up to be the most open 3D engine on the market. It is not specialized in a style of game.

    The only problem for Unity, is that their business model is attacked by the competition. If Crytek give their engine for Indies, then Unity will go behind, because having a bockbuster game will always boost the sales for the engine.

    Also UDK is cheaper than Unity for iPhone + PRO...and they have already a blockbuster in the iTune store with Infinity Blade... nothing compare with the small funky games made with Unity!
     
  30. Frank Oz

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    I don't think Unity would suffer all that much. We'd mostly lose the Unity Free users and the modders and MMO types. But other than that, Cryengine 3 targets very high end stuff, Unity seems to be still pretty mobile focused (unfortunately grr). I think it'll be UDK vs Cryengine, we'll mostly avoid much of the fighting, then we can side with the winner and kick the loser while he's down... whoops didn't mean to say that last bit out loud.
     
  31. 2dfxman1

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    Not really. It's also good for rpgs, racing games, platformers and all other kind of games.
     
  32. Dreamora

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    For game developers, very old means SM2 hardware.
    9400 is a 2nd generation SM4 hardware, thats 5 years newer (or 3 years old), so from your hardware its not really possible to draw any conclusion to "old hardware"
    Would be interesting to know what you get on lowest settings as that gives an idea on if its really reasonable to assume that it runs on hardware below GeForce 8500+
     
  33. 2dfxman1

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    It's a goddamn notebook card.
     
  34. Dreamora

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    I know
    But you seem to forget that the major metric that exploded in its value between GeForce 6 and GeForce 8 / 9 is the fillrate and bandwidth of the chips, which is exactly what makes or breaks deferred.
    Also even if it is a mobile, I can pick up fights with many of the GF7 generation desktop cards on forward, on deferred its going to win them even easier

    I've been long enough on a 7600GT to know how extremely bad they perform already in basic deferred rendering (got a feel of it on Supreme Commander where independent of resolution and quality, your framerate NEVER exceeded 25FPS due to the gpu, saw several other games back in those days with exactly the same limitations and those games were idiotically simple on what their deferred did, they didn't have fancy stuff like hdri, SSAO, ...).
    Thats why I'm pointing it out. just cause GF7 is 2 generations back this does not mean that its "only slightly slower", the gap from GF6 to GF7 and from GF7 to GF8 / 9 is massive for this kind of rendering.
     
  35. tatoforever

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    Sorry to disappoint you but cryEngine isn't build around a FPS. And no, Unity will remain the king of indies for a while.
    They must come with an aggressive licensing/price to beat Unity on that side.
     
  36. andyz

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    A little off topic perhaps - but on Xbox 360 the LOD popping is very obvious on Crysis 2 - just walk forward/backwards at the right distance from an object and it will keep popping between detail levels with no fade-transitions.
    So compared to console, Unity can beat it at some stuff lol!
     
  37. 2dfxman1

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    Unity isn't even multicore...
     
  38. Dreamora

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    The part relevant for distinct lod levels actually is (loadasync of WWW loaded asset bundles, both load async and www are in distinct worker threads) :)

    But yeah otherwise Unity is not capable to compete especially on an x360 which has 3 dual threading but low clocked cpus where multithreading becomes crucial. But UT is aware of that and Cell as they target it so its going to chance, although I suspect it to be more due to the pressure on the mobiles where dual core cpus arrived which UDK already supports and Unity not so far, making it pretty hard to compete on an iPad 2 or a good Android (Qualcom, TI, Samsung, NOT NVIDIA as their stuff isn't good it was only first - a 2011 gpu without unified shader units and OpenCL support just is so totally no modern) as the cpus didn't get faster only parallel
     
  39. brn

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    Personally I get the feeling theres some great looking visuals on the way from unity developers. The vibe I'm getting from the forums based on the questions people are asking, makes me think some heavy visual development is going on. As long as Unity remains a great tool for fast paced Iterative development it will have its place. 3.0 hasn't been out that long. It will take a few month more before the developers who are really taking advantage of what it offers start to show there progress. The U3 and C3 engines are mighty pieces of work for sure, But the art in thier techdoemos is in my opinion the greatest component in the gap between other engines and unity. A few good shaders and some nice art thats been well directed is all that the Unity developers will have to produce to at least close the perceived gap by a substantial margin.
     
  40. 2dfxman1

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    Art isn't the problem.
    Unity does lack many performance critical features. Firstly it's not multi core, which greatily limits your game. And skinned meshes are rendered in software. 1 core + software skin = enjoy maxing out the core and having no power left for the game.
     
  41. Frank Oz

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    Are there any examples of this software skinning destroys your hopes and dreams? I hear people mention it, but yet to see something IN Unity, to back it up.

    Also, the multicore thing. I'm not even gonna start on that, just present the back catalogue of every game made before multiple cores and point out that it never hurt them, they just worked within their limits.

    Indie developers shouldn't be worried about Crysis2 or UDK4 max quality levels. Cause none of us are ever going to reach them for many years. That there's for the bigger boys who sneeze dollars and eat diamond encrusted babies for breakfast.
     
  42. 2dfxman1

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    Try to have more than 10 characters on screen that are higher than 3k tris. Slows down my S***ty system a lot. And yet it can run mafia2 faster lol.
    As for indies not reaching the quality, just because you can't reach and don't need these features doesn't mean no one else can.
    You have no problems? That's cool. I do have some problems that simply cannot be overcome without fixing unity.
     
  43. Dreamora

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    There are three major points where the lack of MT hurts now or has been for a while

    1. mobile - most new devices that come out this year don't get much faster cpu but more parallel ones. Not being able to utilize that means you will suffer (to my knowledge UT is working on that though). The cpu on mobiles are not that powerfull that you can just say "yeah not having the second core does not impact us greatly" as you have very limited resources and sharing them between animation, software sound, animation, AI and physics is hefty. Also the MT here opens up the possibility to offer movietextures again (even more so when Apple makes OpenCL available given it isn't yet, as iPad2s dual gpu is opencl capable)
    2. networking - turn it however you want, but a non threaded networking isn't far away from non-usable networking as using it as dedicated server on a larger scale is impossible due to the limits on messages you can process. The XXX post strong thread back from Unity 2.x days which still holds shows that too well.
    3. Softbody physics and cloth: you can turn it how you want, but if you try to use them you will realize fast that you need to cut the detail degree seriously to remain on fluent FPS, which is a shame especially as PhysX would itself by multithreaded out of the box if not forcefully prevented from working that way.

    I'm sure some would list MT as a requirement for eye candy, but I don't care for that, my concern is that creativity and available flexibility remains totally unused, even more so we actively waste bat power on mobile and notebook cause we force a single core to its max instead of running on multiple cores on low usage.
     
    Last edited: Apr 4, 2011
  44. brn

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    Unity certainly has some faults, some that i just cant believe it shipped with. But its strengths are there to.

    Ive worked on engines that were multi threaded, One that did all the skinning on the GPU. Sounds great and it was but there is always a catch and the catch in this case was that any shader you wrote also had to carry that burdon. Right now in unity you can write shaders without even considering if its animated or not. You just write them and for the most part you don't even have to think about how the lighting intergrates or multiple techniques ect. Sure this approach is slow performance wise , but its very quick in development time. For me thats how you get great performance out of Unity. Instead of trying to draw twice as much, sometimes its just as good to draw half as much with more polish for your Dev time.

    Just a different way to skin a cat i suppose... Sorry terrible pun.

    just my two cents.
    Brn
     
  45. tatoforever

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    Those old games, weren't that much complex than today's games with lots of dynamic physics bodies, complex AI systems, game logic, etc.
    Yes, Unity needs to support multi-core as much as possible. Hopefully they are working on that. :)
     
  46. Frank Oz

    Frank Oz

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    I hope all those wanting multicore etc. to make their games realize that I will be watching them like a HAWK, ready to pounce with the "I told you so!" line, the second they don't release some Epic-Unrealcrysisoblivion-quality-reality-killing-holographic-projection-of-a-parallel-world-game-ON-AN-iPHONE!.. hehehe :D


    Just kidding........

    But I will say the line ;)


    I also though look forward to being proven wrong by said superawesomequality game. Really, would love it.
     
  47. Dreamora

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    There are technically 3 ways of skinning at least on DX, not just software or shader, DX since DX7 days also offered hardware skinning.
    They don't bring along that burden (don't think that exists on OpenGL though)

    also shader skinning is no holy grail, it brings along some major constraints which are hard to overcome and normally lead to fairly complex to use animation systems (PainInTheAss TM) which are barely more capable than what Unity offers if you use scripts to control stuff, if at all and that while normally requiring Maya or 3DS Max to be usable at all


    But I agree, there definitely have been worse engiens than unity, but we all know where those engines went and perhaps just care too much for Unity to see it follow them to dev/null ;)
     
    Last edited: Apr 4, 2011
  48. nikko

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    I think the Unity community is amazing. Someone has tested the community of Crytek or UDK.
     
  49. janpec

    janpec

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    +1 to that reply.

    Engine communities are really very different. Very interesting actually.
    Unity community is very frendly and helpfull. You get answers on this forums very fast, but it does become very agressive when it comes to MMORPG threads. For example in UDK forums there are many very complex game threads, which are not as complex in MMORPG in programming terms but for certain are demanding a lot of development time and heavy assets.

    UDK community is more experianced than Unity in general and there are much more serious indie AAA games going on there. I could count on one hands fingers indie AAA Unity games, while UDK has plenty.

    Cryengine is for now whole different story. I am sure that community will expand, and change a lot when new Cryengine 3 is released indie.
    But for now its very modding community with small projects and very slow development progress. Afcourse for reason becouse you can only make mods with it, but on other hand it is more mature and more experianced community than Unity. All projects there seem to have some bottom line and are interesting as well as polished. Also what i noticed is that many people are saying on this forums even if you have Cryengine 3 (or 2) as indie developer you dont exceed its potential. I have to say that by this is actually true for current Cryengine 2 community. Most of projects are good looking but far lower quality than any Cryengine 2 game.

    The frendliest community so far i think it is Leadwerks community.
     
  50. bigkahuna

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    I think that's partly due to the fact that it's a much smaller community and Josh is very strict at keeping discipline in the forums (certain topics, like engine comparisons, are strictly taboo there. A good idea IMO). Another great community would be the DX Studio forums where I've always gotten friendly help every time I needed it and the Shiva forums aren't too far behind.

    To be fair, until a couple years ago, you couldn't have found a friendlier, more helpful place to hang out and get help than here. Ask a question about a shader and Aras posted a custom shader a couple hours later. Ask a question about a feature and Joe would post that it would be added in the next version and a script that would work in the mean time. Lots of great help and friendly, fun banter. Most of that is gone, I'm afraid. There are still some great folk contributing great work and tons of help, but it's sometimes hard to see the good behind all the other detritus that seems to flood the forums.