Over the past few weeks I have been blogging about the stages in 3D development, but this blog will be a little different as well as the final regarding these topics. I will be talking about the history of 3D graphics and my inspiration regarding this, since I’m a programmer, I will aim this towards games.
2D 3D: Wolfenstein 3D
One of the first commercially successful 3D games made which wasn’t actually 3D by today’s standards. Wolfenstein 3D was a first person perspective shooter which had the player move through a grid-like layout level to shoot enemies and reach the goal. It had no polygons or shaders, but instead used raycasting that would detect what the column of pixels on screen would intersect and, using some maths, calculate what each pixel would be of the column. For a 200×200 pixel screen, it would do 200 raycasts and then 40000 simple maths calculations for the colour of the pixels, which is far better than 40000 raycasts which would most likely be impossible and require more complex maths for each raycast than what was done.
Polygon 3D: I, Robot
This isn’t related to the 2004 film starring Will Smith, this is the 1984 arcade game that first introduced polygon graphics to the world. It used simple colours to indicate different objects which is far more primitive from the games today which have a lot of processing power at their expense.
Polygon 3D: Doom (2016)
Far more advance in gameplay and graphics, this game was used to debut the most powerful 3D rendering API released by the Kronos Group by the time of this blog.
Who inspires me
I’d have to say Inigo Quilez is my favourite graphics programmer due to the type of content he produces. He has been able to create spectacular graphics from small amounts of data which are based on Maths and procedural generations. An example of his work is below, it was made as a 24kb demo which is an insane size to have such content.