View Full Version : Consider This- The Water Issue

2nd Mar 2004, 05:06
i think the reason why water was removed from T: DS is because it would be pretty difficult to render. even in the days before physics engines and dynamic lighting, water was an issue within games. i remember having problems way back in the day with certain titles (like duke3d and that psycho samurai game) whenever i hit an area with water. so i'm guessing water was MOSTLY removed because of these things...

1) it's a constantly moving source. not like a wall which is static. waves and flowing streams are causes for slowdown. probably.

2) with the dynamic lighting, it would have to reflect, as well as refract the light shone upon it. who knows how many issues this could cause.

3) the physics engine would probably burn out your cpu when it comes to the water issue. splashing, and having to calculate the x number of drops and their flight paths would probably pose the biggest problem of them all. not to mention when you're in water, it would have to show you, or whatever object that's in the water being an obstruction to the current just for that realistic effect.

those are just my guesses on the issue. and when ya consider that both systems (pc and xbox) would probably require massive upgrades just to properly render water in the sense of the previous thief games and with the additions brought by the new engine, it comes off as sensible to just remove water entirely.

of course though, i'd rather drop the physics/lighting if it means more fleshed out levels and additional routes to the objective.

have IS or anyone with more experience with game programming commented on this topic? if so, hook me up with a link please!

2nd Mar 2004, 06:31
I am not a game programmer, but I am a engineering programmer of sorts, and I have read some things about games.

I think that, in a game, nobody would (or should) try to make a physical model of moving water and to render it accurately. It is just too complicated physically. It would take far too much computation just to model the moving water. The rendering, with reflections and refractions, would be a nightmare if done by ray tracing, and it would really slow the system down. Clearly, the benefit would not be worth the drain on resources until we are running Thief on a HAL 9000.

But there are many ways to fake it. Faking it is what game design, with textures instead of individual stones, is all about. The "accurate" rendering you see in a game is mostly smoke and mirrors, with the exception of a few important things like the limbs and maybe the lips of moving AI. Even those are half polygons and half textures, with blending algorithms to make the polygons look smooth.

Thief 1 and 2 faked water, and they did it well. All you really need are the following:

A way to simulate ripples and reflections from an undulating surface. Electronic greeting cards, T1, and T2 do that nicely.

A way to determine when Garrett's eyes are above or below the surface. No problem there.

Different degrees of transparency, fog, or whatever when looking through the water.

A splashing noise when traveling through the surface, and another noise when traveling underneath the surface.

Different (neutral) gravity when under water.

It is really not so difficult to fake it. I find it hard to believe that a more advanced engine could not also fake water in some manner. If Thief's engine cannot do that, then one has to wonder why they would adopt such an engine. Still, that is one possibility.

Two other possibilities might be - (1) it is possible but not built in, and the programmers ran out of time before they could implement it; (2) design priority was low for some reason.

Frankly, I do not really appreciate any of the arguments I can think of for eliminating swimmable water. I would really like to know the designers' reasoning. I am not too pleased with the decision, but I suspect it is too late now to change it, for whatever reason. Other things like rope arrows and a level editor (SDK) strike me as more feasible in the short term.

2nd Mar 2004, 07:16
i hear what you're saying. HL2 even has water during one level (at the dock, or whatever, as seen in the 500mb trailer), as well was shown water during the bragging of the engine's capabilities. so ya may be on to something when it comes to the development timescale.

i'm kinda half and half with comprehending the whole "faking" part of your post though. i can see how thief 1 and 2 do it well cause, truth be told, they weren't the greatest graphical achievements....ever. so i can see how it would be possible to toss it in without having to worry about someone yelling out "that looks cheesey!"

in your opinion, with the upped graphics and all, would faking it with the current technologies still look believeable? or would it look just really out of place when the water touches something more solid (wall/pipe/object/npc)?

and yeah, the developers reasons are the best bet for putting an end to this issue (but not the doubts in the community). but they don't seem willling to comment on it from what i've seen (which has been nothing from them).

2nd Mar 2004, 07:32
You do not have to reduce it to T1 and T2 levels. It is just a question of degree, and what approximation you are willing to make. You could use fractals to describe the water surface, you could simulate the motion with pre-defined visuals rather than calculate it from physics, and you could use approximate rendering. There is always a way to speed things up.

2nd Mar 2004, 11:30
I'm not really brainy enough to join in on this, but:
There is also a bit in the Half-life 2 video where barrels and a matress are thrown into a pool of water and it didnt seem to cause any problems. Not that I would entirely trust that video to reflect gameplay.
Have either of you played NOLF2? It is about 2 years old I think, but the water looks very nice in it. you cant really interact with it much but you can swim in it. I wouldnt have believed that IonStorm's new engine would be incapable of producing similar results, but it seems to be lacking in many areas.
Are they getting lazy? Old?

2nd Mar 2004, 19:43
I don't know this for a fact, but I'd say the water had a good chance of being pre-processed. HL2 has a very clever shader system, I'm looking forward to messing around with it, to see what crazy things I can come up with.

2nd Mar 2004, 19:43
Originally posted by Tenkahubu
I'm not really brainy enough to join in on this, but:
There is also a bit in the Half-life 2 video where barrels and a matress are thrown into a pool of water and it didnt seem to cause any problems. Not that I would entirely trust that video to reflect gameplay.
Have either of you played NOLF2? It is about 2 years old I think, but the water looks very nice in it. you cant really interact with it much but you can swim in it. I wouldnt have believed that IonStorm's new engine would be incapable of producing similar results, but it seems to be lacking in many areas.
Are they getting lazy? Old?

the game (HL2) really does do water that well. I played the demo level and messed around with the water and all.

2nd Mar 2004, 19:55
As Peter Smith pointed out, it would probably be a trivial task to implement water in the fashion it was present in the previous games. To integrate this 'old' water system with Havok would probably not be very difficult either, as it surely is well aquainted with H2O and it's behaviour. Then just upgrade the texture of the water to look a bit more up-to-date and there you'd have it: water the same way it was in T 1/2, except with better graphics and any enhancements Havok would bring. Like floating objects etc.


2nd Mar 2004, 20:29
If any of you have played Alice, the water in that game was great. It looked like a pond surface, it did not slow down the game at all, and had some minor effects it would do to show the waves Alice made when she fell in or swam around. I can also say for a fact that it is possible to have real-time water that simulates refraction, reflects the surrounding scenery, and uses Fluid Dynamics equation solutions to perfectly simulate the movement of the water given a slow-moving object passing through it or falling into it and making waves. Someone showed it to me at a SigGraph club meeting at my alma mater, it looked absolutely sweet! It was a chunk of code they did themselves for incorporating into a larger project, so I don't think there's a way I can show it to you. The only imperfection relative to actual real water was that it could only be a single, unbroken, mostly flat surface - so no splashes that send water flying, and objects that move quickly through it would not actually churn the water up to the point it folds in on itself and traps air bubbles, and the refractions are simulated and not actually mathematically correct ray-traces of the underlying surface.

[edit: oh yeah, and it ran at 60 fps on the system I saw running it, and that PC was a pretty normal gaming system for today - no professional graphics cards required, I think they said it had a mid-range Geforce FX in it. It was just a square patch of water though, no surrounding scenery. I'll ask them if I can have a copy of the executable and record a small video of it.]

But even the water in Alice looked plenty good enough for a Thief sequel, and you could see the lake bed under it bending around as light refracted through the waves.

4th Mar 2004, 19:24
You could also look at games like Farcry which has pretty nice looking water that reflects light rather well. But alas this is not one of those engines. The unreal 2003 engine seems to be very limited when it comes to fluids. Hell, in Unreal 2003 wather was more or less etheral and had no other effekt than the purely visual. I believe that if they wanted somewhat real seeming water in Thief3 they would have to do the coding themselves from scratch and that would probably take alot of time to do. So i guess they opted for the easier and faster way. I dont mind it very much. Water never had a very big impact in the previous thief games. Most of the areas with water could as well have been dry sewers instead and most other places could have done without water at all (possibly exepting the warehouse dock in Thief 2)
And besides. Who knows, maybe we will see wonderfull, fully interactive water in thief 4 instead :D

4th Mar 2004, 19:31
I don't think we'll miss water areas in Thief.. you know, as the game will dark mostly, only the reflection effect of enlightened objects and corresponding ripple effects would do.

Anyway.. anything to let the game be out as soon as possible. :D

4th Mar 2004, 19:37
Morrowind also has very nice water, with realistic ripples around a swimmer. That is all.

4th Mar 2004, 23:31
Um... Rollercoaster Tycoon 3 is going to have realistic water with reflections and ripples, and you're telling me Thief 3 can't? What's wrong with this picture?


4th Mar 2004, 23:38
I also have Alice and agree with the water concept in that game was very good...but don't forget Unreal either folks. That also had some exceptional water usages throughout the game as well. Even DiabloII/Exp had some very nice effects with water, although you didn't swim in it, it did show some very realistic looking rain/drops in parts of it (even the shifting wind/rain was pretty cool) I really think, as with other choices they made (as also was done with DE:IW cause DE had water/swimming), was due to time/development for other parts to take priority while others got dropped. Too bad as I also will miss that element as well :( Ta and Good Hunting!

5th Mar 2004, 07:31
hi guys, this would be my first post up in here. I thought i'd just shed a little light on the subject. (no pun intended)

1. When video game designers adopt an engine for a game, the engine doesnt go unchanged. There are aspects of the code that MUST be altered in order to get desired effects. In other words, adding water would be a cake walk for even a mediocre coder.

2. "Faking" water physics as you all put it is a good point. it IS unbelievably simple. I'm not a brainiac by any means, and I could prolly sit down and create some great water image and bump maps. There are some particle effects added, some other parameters in the code, and so on. but it's really not too difficult. using lightmaps you could even simulate reflection of light off of water. There are a ton of options.

You know in DOOMIII scrns?? how you can see all those kick@$$ shadows and curves on the character models? That's NOT because the geometry is modeled. It's because john carmack, being the genious he is, devised a way to make his engine do some sort of advanced new kind of bump map. it's not really even a abump map anymore. When the D3 screens came out, everyone thought our computers would be powerful enough to handle fully geometrically modeled characters...no freaking way. Not even running dual opterons could you keep track of that much geometry. No the polygons have only slightly increased, it's all the new visual effects they can create with code now...tha'ts why vid cards have gotten so insane..they have to make tons of new calculations...far beyond just geometry and Z buffers. It's gotten to hyper sampling and active bump mapping, and diffusion and radiosity calculations. Anyway the whole point here is that water is cake...no prob. And even if it's not in UT2K3 it's no biggie, it could easily be added in code.

3. someone stated that a cpu would freak out or burn up or something?? well i hate to tell you but if you run any cpu diagnostic software while running a game, you'll see that hardly any of it is used...maybe 30 percent at the most. Depending on your core. It's the VPU on your vid card that does all of that.

4. The water in Diablo is of no concern. That was all two d. 3d doesnt even enter the equation there.

5. This all leads me to believe that there is going to be plenty of other daggon rad gameplay mechanics that water just really wont matter. Also, as true design elements the water in t1 and t2 was not really important. Think, when did it really serve as usefull? NEVER. it was just there because it could be. I think there is no need for it. We'll have to use our brains in diff ways to outsmart the taffers in this game.

That about does it for my water lecture...enjoy..and i'm gonna go dream of playing this kickarse game now.


5th Mar 2004, 23:17
Realistic water is not an issue for any modern game-engine.

In fact, the flightsim (!) Il2-ForgottenBattles has a "perfect water"-mode, that enables 3D-waves, ground-textures shining through, realistic light-reflections, randomized wave-size, waves hitting the shores, spray being thrown up by your plane skipping it etc.
Imagine this on a daylight-setting, in a sunlight that has yet to be beaten by any other game.

All this requieres a radeon 9500Pro or higher card...not to shabby, imo.
It can be switched-off...to excellent mode, which is standard stuff for any gaming-rig.

If they removed the water with any reason, then be it saving GPU-time for something else.
Which hopefully a demo will show.

6th Mar 2004, 05:49
My only reason for throwing the water effects from DiabloII was just to state that even in that game...some pretty realistic effects were made...so therefore, with this powerful new engine and all the advancements that have been made since these other older games/engines...why in the heck not give us some water that can be swum in for more varied types of missions? Yes, there were some very good uses for swim water in T1/T2...and alternate ways to get around...so I disagree that water was not an important part of the Thief games. I think those missions that included it were pretty fun :) Ta and Good Hunting!

6th Mar 2004, 06:18
Maybe the reason they have omitted swimmable water from the game is that it just didn't fit in with the setting they were going to use for the game. From the sound of it, T3 will be set almost entirely in a city. So unless there's a river or canal running through it or some especially deep sewers there may just be no need for swimmable water.

This could be the same reason rope arrows were dropped--it might be hard to get full use out of them in a city full of brick & stone buildings.

6th Mar 2004, 07:22
Neither of the above arguments wash, in my opinion. Baffords, Assassins, Ambush and many other city missions made good use of water. It sounds and looks good, and it provides a nice alternate way to get around. City missions are also great places for rope arrows - climbing into upper story windows, getting up into beams, etc. The rope climbing in Soulforge, a mostly stone mission, was superb. And many FM's make more use of ropes. There has to be more to it than design issues, and they are not telling us the reason.

I think if you can have swimmable water in Quake, you can have it in Thief 3. And the rope arrow decision is baffling to me. Roping around is one of the most fun forms of navigation, in my opinion. It is like the people in charge never played the original games.

The only logical explanation I can think of is that the programmers ran out of time or money.

6th Mar 2004, 22:26
well since they have had about fifty million years to make it I hope thats not the case!:rolleyes:

The rope arrows really bums my arse out. :(

And yeah I suppose the water was well used in the other two games. Good point there. And lets face it...everyone loves playing the farcry demo...partially cause the water is just insane. Realtime physics and bumpmaps are a bonus too!!

I dunno I think the style of the game will again rock us. It was unique and cool then, we looked past the poorly tiled textures and overall unimaginative level designs. I'm sure they have made numerous improvements since then.

Oh does anyone know about MP?? is that going to happen, my roomies and I have been keeping our fingers crossed.


6th Mar 2004, 23:03
Hi Peter Smith! There are a lot of uses for rope arrows in the city, but I think a lot of them were a kind of artificial. Just think--you're looking up & there's a single wooden beam projecting out over the street, right under the beam is an open window & inside the window is a room with an important item. Using a rope arrow required the mission designer to place some kind of wooden texture in an appropriate place for you to sink an arrow into. By walking around & looking for wooden beams & things you were led to places you were supposed (or allowed) to use rope arrows. Depending on how they implement the climbing gloves, they may be more versatile than rope arrows.

I liked being able to swim in the water & they made some clever uses out of it. But I think it served more to add ambience to the mission than anything else. In city missions you may not need & possibly won't miss swimmable water. If they come out with a T4 in an appropriate setting, maybe swimmable water & rope arrows will be back.

Don't get me wrong--I will miss the rope arrows especially & am sorry they dropped swimming from the game too. I'm mostly just trying to play devil's advocate here. I don't think people will miss those features as much as they think they will. And I'm guessing that their omission doesn't have anything to do with any X-Box limitations so there must be some reason for doing so.

7th Mar 2004, 08:19
well put, i totally agree.


7th Mar 2004, 09:04
let's hope it's something other than a time/money issue, smith. i think i'd rather the devs just say "forget water" than hear it's a time/money issue, cause that's making me lean towards the belief that other things may have been added, but won't be as great as they can be.

i would have to argue rope arrows being mostly artificial. overall, the levels of thiefs 1+2 had a lot of wooden areas. granted, there were a few instances when there was that lonesome little beam above a window, but there were a lot more wooden buildings with windows in them or ceilings that made ya ascend to find a secret or two.

7th Mar 2004, 19:46
Well not to just find a secret or two but how about as a way to get around...i.e. "Masks"? What would that mission been like without a rope arrow? :D I enjoyed that mission myself for it's specialized way of completing it. Oh I know you could have done it by other means if you'd of wanted to but never-the-less, it was designed for the rope arrow :) Just think how goofy that would have been if you'd of had climbing gloves instead! LOL Yikes! Ta and Good Hunting!

7th Mar 2004, 20:08
Excuse me, but that makes no sense.
Take a ThiefDS mission designed for climbing gloves, and imagine trying to complete it with rope arrows...:cool:

Yikes, I guess:D

Oh yes, you can state "haven't seen any ThiefDS mission yet", but then again you've never been able to play Mask with climbing gloves.:p

7th Mar 2004, 21:50
Originally posted by Peter Smith
It is like the people in charge never played the original games.

The only logical explanation I can think of is that the programmers ran out of time or money.

My thoughts exactly...

7th Mar 2004, 21:54
Well the whole money issue doesnt make sence. They should have just not put the climbing gloves and other new features in and spent that time/money on rope arrows and water. They are taking out elements that people loved and replacing them with ideas that people may or may not like. They should have gone with what is garenteed to work...

7th Mar 2004, 22:00
Originally posted by Paajtor
Excuse me, but that makes no sense.
Take a ThiefDS mission designed for climbing gloves, and imagine trying to complete it with rope arrows...:cool:

Yikes, I guess:D

Oh yes, you can state "haven't seen any ThiefDS mission yet", but then again you've never been able to play Mask with climbing gloves.:p

we don't even know what kind of surfaces the WCG will be used on...so there's still a good possibility that rope arrows could still be used in place of the WCG, even if the levels are designed around the WCG.

7th Mar 2004, 22:31
To respond to Chow Yung Skinny ( I know, it's a pun son).

...right under the beam is an open window...

In medieval cities, and in Holland and other countries today, you will see heavy timbers sticking out over the street. It was used, and is used, with a block and tackle to raise furniture and other heavy items up to the upper levels of multi-story structures.

With narrow stairs and no elevators, this was the only practical method for getting goods into a building.

So the beams are not out of place in the Garrett world. The fact that a room immediately behind had some object you needed or could use, is a weakness in the design of the game play. The window could have simply let the player use an alternate access to the building and open the interior to exploration.

Good use of this is demonstrated in some of the THIEVERY maps.

Addressing the water issue, I will miss non swimable water. Fighting drowning in TRAIL OF BLOOD, LOST CITY, and KIDNAP was an enjoyable challenge.

I see no reason for this to be omitted. Just as I see no reason for the loss of the arrows in question. Both the arrows and the WCG could have been in the arsenal to be used as needed.

8th Mar 2004, 01:45
Hi tBm! I wish I were young & skinny!! ;-) As I said, I like rope arrows a lot & especially enjoy those missions where you can make a sort of alternate path for yourself by shooting a series of arrows into a ceiling & jumping from one to the next (as in Maw of Chaos). But any time you did that it had to be specifically added by the designer to the mission to accomodate the rope arrows. Ditto Masks, another fun rope arrow mission. All those missions could have been altered to omit rope arrows entirely without harming the overall gameplay. I think the main point I was trying to get across was that if the issue of roping somewhere doesn't come up you won't miss the arrows, especially if the gameplay is otherwise good. There are no rope arrows at all in Cragscleft but that doesn't detract from that mission at all.

There are other features that are more critical--I was reading the IS forum & someone brought up the subject of "view bobbing". This is the illusion of the first person camera bobbing slightly as Garrett walks. This is something that you don't even think of when you think of Thief (at least I didn't till I read the post) but is really critical to the immersion factor. Hitman 2 had a "first person view" tacked onto it but, as I recall, all they gave you was a static view of the game without the 3rd person puppet visible. I hope they don't do this to Thief.

8th Mar 2004, 01:57
Chow Yun Fat I understand your point. My take on it is that in such a city, in such an age, timbered buildings are a constant.

As a thief in such a city, and as a person desiring to secretly enter such a building, the roof tops, or upper story access would be appealing.

Having a tool that allows such, ropearrows, grappeling hooks and lines, as well as taloned gloves, would be an asset to a thief.

Smooth marble walls, tightly fitted dressed stone walls and other such normal conditions will negate the gloves. A timbered roof eave, a window frame and any number of other such construction details could allow the use of the arrow.

Design considerations aside. It worked in the first three THIEF games. It was a challenge to know when and where. It added to the play options. It added to the atmosphere and ambience of the game.

So, I do think the absence will diminish the game some what.

9th Mar 2004, 03:19
Hi, theBlackman

Design considerations aside. It worked in the first three THIEF games. It was a challenge to know when and where. It added to the play options. It added to the atmosphere and ambience of the game.
I pretty much agree with you but it really looks like we will be missing numerous things that we enjoyed from the first two games. Rope arrows & swimming are only the ones we know about now. I'm also a little concerned about this new way of lockpicking--the way you're supposed to manipulate the lockpicks sounds sort of like it's intended to be used with a joystick. I can also foresee serious game balance problems with an ability to move at will around the city. It's kind of like Grand Theft Auto--except that in GTA it doesn't take me that long to build up a huge bankroll & get an effectively unlimited amount of ammo for all my weapons. Just think of Garrett committing lots of burglaries between missions allowing him to buy 99 of each type of arrow!!

As with climbing gloves, it will all depend on the execution by the designers. If they do a good job we'll get a balanced, fun game that will be different from T1 & T2 but still enjoyable to play.

9th Mar 2004, 03:38
don't see how balance will be much of an issue when it comes to the freeroam city. it too is optional. so an experienced player can/will take the risk of just heading over to the next mission while a newer player can/will practice his sneaking skills.

9th Mar 2004, 21:13
Oh dear, I have to explain myself again. :D When I mentioned the mission "Masks", I was using that as an example of a different kind of mission that specifically was more programmed to the idea of using "rope arrows" and therefore was a unique mission that was fun to do. I liked using my rope arrows and got satisfaction from using them well...shooting/climbing, etc. :)

Sure I suppose they can make missions that utilize the climbing gloves instead of...but that's not my point. I don't feel that will be the same kind of challenge and will limit the places you'll be able to use them. In other words, you wouldn't be able to play a mission like "Masks" or some of the other types that enabled you to get to similar types of places but be limited to a wall and not able to shoot up into grates or beams, etc.

In that regard, I'm in agreement with tBm...instead of replacement perhaps as an add-in type of item for specific uses? I dunno, I'm not sure I really care much for that idea either. I suppose that could be resolved with game design? But more importantly, it will limit your choices of the way you figure out how to get through a mission "your way" and not restricted to...climbing gloves, tunnel/caves kinds of ways as an example.

As far as the "open" play in-between...I would imagine most players will want to do it as it would give them the extra play time and as a way, from what I understand, a way to get extra money to buy equipment or at least possibly any equipment since that's where the in-game store will be to get your stuff. Another unknown is whether you'll get start equipment as before or if you'll need to buy everything other than the very basics a thief would have? Who knows...but bottom line is...I think your very right CYF...it's going to be very different in many ways as was "their" intention much to my dismay :( Ta and Good Hunting!

9th Mar 2004, 23:05
Oh dear, I have to explain myself again. When I mentioned the mission "Masks", I was using that as an example of a different kind of mission that specifically was more programmed to the idea of using "rope arrows" and therefore was a unique mission that was fun to do. I liked using my rope arrows and got satisfaction from using them well...shooting/climbing, etc.
Hi Huntress!! I understood your meaning & I'm in total agreement with it. Masks was an annoying mission because it came after Casing the Joint & was in the exact same building but I loved the rope arrow part of it. Rope arrows were always my favorite kind of arrow & I enjoyed finding places to use them. If we're not going to be able to do that anymore it will be a loss, but I'm hoping that the game will be good enough that we won't really notice.

And really, when you think about it, T2 was much different from T1. I liked the second game a lot less than the first one. It had a different (inferior) plot, different opponents, different goals, different tools, etc. But there were several great missions & there have been many fabulous FM's made using T2. T3 will be different too but maybe it will not be as much of a step down as I thought T2 was.

9th Mar 2004, 23:29
i don't understand how people can view t2 as being a step down. i thought it was a step up, that not only continued the universe well, but the game as a whole also. good number of missions with more varied objectives, additional items, added threats and some great level design really did nothing but justice in my eyes.

OMG!!1! ROBOTS! sure, a pain in the ass...but they added a very nice challenge. KARASS! ok, he was an annoyance with a tinny voice. what political/religious leader doesn't get on your nerves? i'm sure there's at least one. A SUBMARINE! ok...you can have that, but that's it.

11th Mar 2004, 20:39
Ha, ha...CYF...my commentary wasn't really aimed at you :) It was some other folks that needed a better understanding about my feelings and my comments about rope arrows, etc.

However, I also disagree about the downside of T2 vice T1 :) I know many taffers preferred 1 over 2 for it's more dark story/enviornment but actually my preference was T2 as you might recall from earlier posts regarding this subject :) I did see it as a very good continuance of the first and where it should have taken you story wise in the game. However, what they seem to be doing to T: DS is not the same kind of progression and as a fact have stated they didn't want to do that because of wanting a new audiance and not have to have any knowledge of the first two in order to play, etc. Yes they will have some of the same characters that we know but overall many things have been changed/eliminated, etc. due to that rational. That's what I don't like. I don't care whether the gloves are just an enhancement to allow him to climb whatever kind of climbable wall they'll put into the game (spiked or otherwise) it will still limit their use to a wall which won't be very useful inside a building! That's the kindof point that will take away another choice issue.

Well anyway, guess with the whoopdidoo I'll get from watching myself climb ...gee whiz what could I have been thinking? LOL :( Ta and Good Hunting!