I've been looking forward to The Vanishing of Ethan Carter from the very moment that the guys who made Painkiller and Bulletstorm announced that they were working on a "weird fiction horror story" with a focus on exploration and discovery. The team has been coy about it ever since, offering up some very pretty screens and teasers but little in the way of how it will actually play, but today a new Ethan Carter website was opened to the public, bringing with it a firm release date and 13 minutes of gameplay, complete with developer commentary.
A new trailer for The Vanishing of Ethan Carter has turned up at Gamescom, and while it's not particularly informative, it is a handy reminder that the game will launch next month—and that preorders will soon be available.
I've been looking forward to The Vanishing of Ethan Carter from the moment I first heard about it, and so after more than a year of waiting I was very excited to watch the debut teaser trailer that came out a little earlier today. And having watched it, I am even more excited than I was before – and also very disturbed.
A lot has been written about The Astronauts’ use of photogrammetry technology to create Ethan Carter’s environments. Their artists take thousands of photos of an object, like a rock or a bridge, then feed it into software that turns it into a minutely detailed 3D model. The results are remarkable, but what about the game itself? I’ve seen an early build in action—roughly the first hour of the game—and it has some interesting ideas to go alongside those handsome visuals.
Tim's already told you why The Vanishing of Ethan Carter looks as good as it does. But as impressive as their photogrammetry looks in still pictures, it's the raw scans that really show how absurdly realistic the method can be. As proof, you need to see, admire and play with the collection of scanned 3D models released by dev team The Astronauts and embedded below. I guarantee it contains the sexiest moss you'll see all day.
The short answer is photogrammetry, a method of scanning photographs (a *lot* of photographs) to create and texture highly-detailed 3D objects without any of the repetition associated with common video game techniques. A longer, but far more edifying, explanation can be found over at The Astronauts' tumblr…