I'm game. Day one.
In this image, the first thing we notice is the subject, the helicopter. Is the chopper really the star in this image, or is the breadth of Los Santos the star?
I'll focus on the chopper first and say that the detail on it is ramped up compared to the GTA IV choppers dramatically. It has a lot of geometric detail added, most notable in in the landing feet and the camera at the bottom, but also along the tail and around the finer details of the door. On a more thoughtful look at the chopper, I wonder if you can actually view yourself through that camera in the cinematic mode now, provided a chopper is around, and this being LA, the odds of that are always high, so it would be a sweet addition to view yourself from those in that view mode, but it's probably just for show.
Los Santos looks incredible. There is a marked increase of detail for the far sights compared to those in IV. There are missing effects, one I can notice right away, the traffic in the distance. Even without them being there, this image still shows a lot of growth and addition to the details in the view from afar. The lights (no poles/too far for poles), look strange mid range, but far off look incredible. The poly count has risen on the LOD for buildings as well, but these may be landmark assets, and maybe it won't all be so sturdy (here's hoping it is).
Those palms look great compared to the distant trees in IV. The lighting is working from those near-distant lights very far, and it seems that shadows are drawn much further now as well. We are high-up enough in this helicopter that no shadows would draw at all in GTA IV, and if they did, they wouldn't reach that many blocks away. I'm thoroughly impressed by what I see, it looks the way I would hope it does - LS with the HD treatment, and some taps further than they took it with IV.
|QUOTE (deffpony @ Thursday, Feb 28 2013, 17:18)|
This image is nice. The water is very green, which is cool, because it hints to me there will be different types of water, since the ocean certainly wouldn't look like this, and neither do the rapids (but that set of screens hasn't come out for this thread yet). In GTA IV, the trees and poles didn't shade nicely like they do in this image. They are far away, but you can see that they respect light and shade. If I recall correctly, both poles and trees in GTA IV were either unlit, or in some cases, flat shaded with no smoothing. It looked great, but this looks better. The shadows seem to draw less far in this image than the hopes I had when viewing the first one.
Although I am stoked about some things, some things in the image worry me. I think the boards and the pylon and concrete supports for the deck are very flat looking. Even where direct light is hitting them. I feel I will probably be let down by the work that they will do with materials, specifically the ways they use normal and specular textures in their world maps judging by only these two images. As my first time viewing them, and now portraying a first time viewer, I have my fingers crossed that both of these images are shown excitedly as work in progress, and that there will be better things to see soon.
Reflections in the water of the above-world are nicer, smarter, and seeing more now too.