John Carmack researching next-generation gaming graphics

By Stephany Nunneley, Tuesday, 1 February 2011 21:28 GMT

John Carmack, the tech wizard and rocket engineer at id Software, has said he’s already started researching next-generation graphics for videogames.

According to Carmack, progress in graphics for each generation was an obvious step up, but now and days its getting a bit harder to make such grand leaps.

“Games today look incredible, and there are few things that we can’t do a pretty good job of rendering with the available techniques, so it is much more a question of balancing and trading off the development process against the fidelity of the product,” he explained over on the Bethesda Blog.

“We have to be reactive to hardware trends, and there are still large bodies of work in the offline rendering world to consider, but I don’t feel huge pressure to radically rework our graphics architecture right now… Still, I have done a fair amount of research work this year to help clarify our next generation directions, but so far they have mostly been negative results – I know we won’t be rendering with a triangle intersection ray tracer on the next gen, for instance.

“I have a couple more research projects to undertake in the coming year, but the technical work I am most excited about doesn’t have anything to do with graphics, but instead with the data management and work flow through the development process.”

And who wouldn’t be excited about data management and workflow through the development process, John

Last year during QuakeCon, id’s CEO Todd Hollenshead told VG247’s Nathan Grayson the firm made a “strategic decision on part of the overall corporate strategies of Zenimax, Bethesda, and now Arkane,” not to license out its newest gaming engine, id Tech5.

“One of the reasons in the past that we licensed technology is that we only had one team working on games, so we couldn’t really leverage the tech to its fullest extent until we licensed it out to other teams to use it,” he said. “Especially in a tech industry, engines have a fairly rapidly closing window of best use. To some extent, that’s not an issue as much anymore since we have multiple teams.

“The other thing is that we really do think id Tech 5 offers us a competitive advantage with respect to what we can do within game development. And so we want to keep that within the id/Bethesda/Zenimax family.”

You can read the full Q&A with Carmack over on the Bethesda Blog.

Thanks, Eurogamer.


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