Jump to content


IMG Posts Hands On with the Halo Universal Binary


  • Please log in to reply
16 replies to this topic

#1 IMG News

IMG News

    Pimpbot 4000

  • IMG Writers
  • 8622 posts
  • Pro Member:Yes

Posted 28 September 2006 - 03:21 PM

IMG has posted a new feature called Hands On with the Halo Universal Binary, which takes an in-depth look at the recently released Universal Binary version of the best selling game, Halo.

Here's a clip from the feature:

When Apple announced its intentions to move the Macintosh platform to Intel processors last year, many Mac gamers wondered if Macsoft, the developer responsible for porting Halo to the Mac, would release an update that would allow them to play Halo on their shiny new Intel-powered machines without having to slog through the game under Rosetta emulation. Several weeks ago, Macsoft finally satisfied users’ wishes by releasing a universal binary version of Halo.
To check out the full feature, follow the link below.
Return to Full Article - InsideMacGames News


#2 Stratomac

Stratomac

    Fan

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 48 posts

Posted 28 September 2006 - 03:51 PM

View PostIMG News, on September 28th 2006, 03:21 PM, said:

IMG has posted a new feature called Hands On with the Halo Universal Binary, which takes an in-depth look at the recently released Universal Binary version of the best selling game, Halo.
Here's a clip from the feature:<BR><BR><DIV CLASS="imgblockquote">When Apple announced its intentions to move the Macintosh platform to Intel processors last year, many Mac gamers wondered if Macsoft, the developer responsible for porting Halo to the Mac, would release an update that would allow them to play Halo on their shiny new Intel-powered machines without having to slog through the game under Rosetta emulation. Several weeks ago, Macsoft finally satisfied users’ wishes by releasing a universal binary version of Halo.</DIV><BR>To check out the full feature, follow the link below.<BR><BR><P STYLE="text-align:center;font-weight:bold;font-size:11px;"><A HREF="/news/story.php?ArticleID=14118" TARGET="_blank">Return to Full Article</A> - InsideMacGames News</P>

I'd actually never tried using the command-h key combo to switch out of Halo. I have, however, always used Command-Tab successfully in 1.x.x. Has the author tried that to see if it, too, is disabled?

#3 calroth

calroth

    Fanatic

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 123 posts
  • Location:Canberra, Australia

Posted 28 September 2006 - 03:54 PM

I've been somewhat critical of IMG articles before, but this one is right on the money. In-depth, doesn't pull punches, and gets right to the heart of what we want to know. Good stuff.

(And yes! Someone else noticed the lack of chat during the Postgame Carnage Report!)

#4 Quicksilver

Quicksilver

    Verbal Windbag

  • IMG Writers
  • 4227 posts
  • Location:Chicago Illinois
  • Pro Member:Yes

Posted 28 September 2006 - 05:04 PM

View PostStratomac, on September 28th 2006, 04:51 PM, said:

I'd actually never tried using the command-h key combo to switch out of Halo. I have, however, always used Command-Tab successfully in 1.x.x. Has the author tried that to see if it, too, is disabled?
  

After reading your post, I tried command-tabbing out of Halo 1.5.2 and Halo 2.0 (UB).  Like you said, it works in Halo 1.5.2, but unfortunately, it doesn't in Halo 2.0.  Chalk up another ding (albeit small) in Macsoft's armor.
Former Senior Hardware Editor
InsideMacGames.com

#5 Janichsan

Janichsan

    Jugger Bugger

  • Forum Moderators
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 8466 posts
  • Steam Name:Janichsan
  • Location:over there

Posted 28 September 2006 - 06:21 PM

Someone somewhere mentioned that you have to pause the game (press ESC?) to be able to command-tab out of Halo 2.0.

"We do what we must, because we can."
"Gaming on a Mac is like women on the internet." — "Highly common and totally awesome?"


#6 converted2truth

converted2truth

    Notorious

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 230 posts
  • Location:Mountain West

Posted 28 September 2006 - 08:50 PM

I had no idea the UB was so FUBAR...

I still might buy it because soon i'll be exclusively intel...

I think Halo is to that point where it's reached the EOL for patching.  Halo 1.5.2 runs great on my 1.8, and little cosmetic bonuses missing from the Mac version seem minor.  I do prefer playing Halo on my Mac over my xbox360 or xbox.  I just like mouse/keyboard and it seems more difficult for whatever reason than console.

Just an FYI:  Mac Halo has always had the firing problem (on low end hardware).  Before i got the X800 for my dual, it did that sticky trigger all the time.  Covenant could shoot off 20 rounds in 2 seconds, while i shot of three cause it got laggy, then it continued to shoot long after the covenant rolled behind a rock or whatever untill all my clicks were shot off.  It sucked, and i think it was tied to hardware because the x800 fixed that for me.

Anyway, i did think it was a great review.  Honesty is always the best policy.  Especially for an audience of Mac gamers that demand realistic perspectives.
Mac Pro/2.66/2GB RAM/X1900/1.5TB & 250GB X partition/250GB XP partition/Dell 24" LCD
MBP CD2.0/2GB ram/100GB HD (20GB XP partition)/ATI X1600m

#7 Janichsan

Janichsan

    Jugger Bugger

  • Forum Moderators
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 8466 posts
  • Steam Name:Janichsan
  • Location:over there

Posted 28 September 2006 - 10:40 PM

View Postconverted2truth, on September 29th 2006, 04:50 AM, said:

I think Halo is to that point where it's reached the EOL for patching.  
I wouldn't say so. MacSoft has gone to quite some extent to universalise Halo. The game is still on sale and now even in an updated version.

I guess, as long as Halo sells - and it probably will for quite a while - MacSoft will continue to support it.

(I just hope the same goes for Aspyr's quite flawed Jedi Knight UBs as well...)

"We do what we must, because we can."
"Gaming on a Mac is like women on the internet." — "Highly common and totally awesome?"


#8 nagromme

nagromme

    Master Blaster

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1954 posts

Posted 29 September 2006 - 12:30 AM

"Macsoft had to move the entire codebase from Metroworks Codewarrior (which, until the move to Intel, was the Photoshop of application development on the Mac) to Apple’s XCode development suite; a process that took several months, and while I’m not a financial expert, a considerable amount of money."

OK, I can see where the $5 comes from :) And I thank Macsoft for undertaking that effort.

I enjoyed Halo on PPC, and although I have an Intel Mac now, I won't personally be buying the UB. Until some more issues are sorted out--but when and if they are, I won't object to the $5.

(Funny I never noticed the waved or other graphical shortcomings in 1.5... but I'm glad Macsoft fixed them all the same! And what's environmental sound? I do hear ambient sounds in Halo Mac.)

"For this article, I actually played through the entire single-player campaign four times: once in Halo 1.5.2 (PowerPC-native), Halo 2.0 (Intel-native), Halo PC, and Halo on the XBox."

:o You, sir, are now THE expert on this subject :)

(One reason I think console versions look better--sometimes--is that TVs are blurrier which actually hides defects and gives everything a soft, movie-like look which is actually appealing in a way. For instance, my old PowerBook G3 needed low detail and low red to play UT99, and it didn't look very good... but when I output that SAME image to TV, like a console, it DID look pretty good! It's an interesting subjective effect, but it helps consoles get away with really low res sometimes.)

#9 IPY da Pinhead

IPY da Pinhead

    Fanatic

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 52 posts
  • Location:Perth, Western Australia

Posted 29 September 2006 - 01:51 AM

Be mean to me if you like... But I took one look at the $5US for an upgrade to a UB version of Halo, and went out and bought the PC version for $20 AUS..... Need I say more?

#10 Eric5h5

Eric5h5

    Minion Tormentor

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 7160 posts

Posted 29 September 2006 - 07:49 AM

View Postnagromme, on September 29th 2006, 02:30 AM, said:

(Funny I never noticed the waved or other graphical shortcomings in 1.5...

If you were using FSAA with super sampling (as opposed to multi sampling), the waves didn't look blocky like that.  Although even with multi sampling I don't remember them looking that bad....

--Eric

#11 Aika

Aika

    Notorious

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 226 posts
  • Location:England

Posted 29 September 2006 - 09:26 AM

Good article. I felt like a right mug for spending $5 on a patch that doesn't even bring feature parity to the PC version and still performs poorly on my computer.

As for the Codewarrior to Xcode transition, Aspyr have probably had to do that for dozens of games whilst making universal binaries and they haven't gone begging for money. Because of this debacle and their non response to emails I am much less likely to support Macsoft now. Aspyr don't charge for patches, promptly answer to emails, release more than one game a year and have a strong presence in Mac gaming forums... the contrast between the two could not be more stark.
iMac late 2013

#12 nagromme

nagromme

    Master Blaster

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1954 posts

Posted 29 September 2006 - 11:01 AM

You may be right that making a UB for Halo was practical without asking for money. I'm guessing they're being honest about that, but who knows.

I will say that I'm very happy with Macsoft for UT2004 :) Which is a different situation, I know.

#13 Bernie

Bernie

    Naughty

  • IMG Pro Users
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1930 posts
  • Location:Baltimore, Maryland
  • Pro Member:Yes

Posted 30 September 2006 - 07:21 AM

Thanks for the article. It told me a lot that I didn't know. It also makes me glad that I still have a Power Mac.

One Way of Looking at Life
Good to be a Master.
Better to be a Teacher.
Best to be a Student.


#14 Batcat

Batcat

    Uberspewer

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 2907 posts
  • Location:In Flux

Posted 30 September 2006 - 10:56 PM

View PostAika, on September 29th 2006, 10:26 AM, said:

Good article. I felt like a right mug for spending $5 on a patch that doesn't even bring feature parity to the PC version and still performs poorly on my computer.
Halo PC was the first major DirectX 9 game, and pushed some graphical limits using MRTs- Multiple Render Targets; up to 4 simultaneous render-to-texture effects that went beyond even what the DX8-class Halo did. One price of that was framerates on the hardware of the day; another was multisample antialiasing- FSAA with MRTs was not supported in hardware by anything prior to the ATi X1000 series. NVidia cards still won't do it. Other qualities of Halo PC such as its per-pixel fogging, beautiful even at and beyond 1600x1200, well exceed the original, tho some shader effects are still lacking by comparison, perhaps due to time constraints (shipping 9/30/03, end of the quarter and up against the original 'set in stone' but unmet Half-Life 2 ship date).

Now that the 650MB Xcode patch is done, the door is still open to patching OGL up to feature and performance parity as the needful hardware becomes more common on Macs. That won't require a patch nearly half the size of the installed app.

#15 bobbob

bobbob

    Uberspewer

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 3367 posts

Posted 01 October 2006 - 06:39 PM

View PostBatcat, on September 30th 2006, 09:56 PM, said:

Now that the 650MB Xcode patch is done

Pssst... there's no way it's 650MB because of the changes to make it compile in XCode.

#16 Quicksilver

Quicksilver

    Verbal Windbag

  • IMG Writers
  • 4227 posts
  • Location:Chicago Illinois
  • Pro Member:Yes

Posted 01 October 2006 - 07:42 PM

View Postbobbob, on October 1st 2006, 07:39 PM, said:


Pssst... there's no way it's 650MB because of the changes to make it compile in XCode.

Good point, but I'd like to hear Aspyr weigh in on which compiler they previously used, and whether they think that it would ever be necessary for users to download a completely new image of a game that they ported.
Former Senior Hardware Editor
InsideMacGames.com

#17 ibookworm

ibookworm

    Fan

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 30 posts

Posted 11 September 2008 - 08:18 PM

With all this justifiable criticism of the Halo UB, I'm curious: am I the only person who has noticed a HUGE performance boost? I have an old 12" PowerBook G4 (1.33, 768 MB RAM). I could never get acceptable performance out of Halo with the old version. With the UB, suddenly I can enable almost all the graphics options, and the game runs super smoothly in multiplayer, with some big slowdowns in single-player but still not to the extent of how slowly it used to run with the graphics turned way down. I haven't tried adjusting my graphics downward yet, but I bet when I do I'll get smooth gameplay even in frantic single-player action.

Anyway, my first thought when I tried the UB was: this is the port we SHOULD have had. I have kept my copy of Halo for years in the confidence that someday I would upgrade to a rig that can actually run it, but if I had had this port from the beginning I would not have had to wait. But I gather other people did not have such great luck with it.