with xilandro having broken new ground yet again with diagonal movement in the New Vegas engine, and my late switching between Fallout 4 and TTW, i've been analysing what brings me personally back to 4; smooth, fluid movement. Full 360 movement and smooth transitions between most animations. I also love the way dialogue engages and disengages.
These are 3 year old talking points at this time. But it does bring to wonder, how close can we bring the oldbryo engine to this level of fluidity? With mods like Solid Project, Asurah's new animation pack (her animations are truly 2018 levels of well done), and Xilandro's B42 introducing weapon intertia, leaning, prone, flyable jets, etc. we see every year, somehow, the limitations of the engine being slowly expanded.
But having started Nuka World (i've been on bed-duty hence lots of times for games lately), and being an extremely vocal critic of Fallout 4 (Far Harbor being a strong exception) I really started to pinpoint what makes FO4 look and feel much smoother and full of life and wondering what types of things we in the modding community can do to recreate that. Just look at say, the Diamond City commons. Though as far as mechanics and gameplay depth, this area is quite flacid and devoid of anything meaningful. But it feels alive just through, i'm guessing, these great, multivaried idles.
Disregarding the graphical fidelity, let's compare walking into the Megaton Commons to the Diamond City ones. We have a similar setup do we not? We have a town crier (Piper's sister and Confessor Cromwell) giving the town a facsimile of social action. We have a bar (Sushi Bar and Jenny Stahl's) and we are surrounded by shops and services. It's the same setup yet Diamond City feels more alive despite having fewer or equal amount of actual meaningful content as Megaton. Why is this? is it because the shops are out in the open, and not behind doors in Diamond City? is it due to less NPCs walking in endless circles?
Does anyone get what i'm saying here? Let's compare even the Market in Nuka World. It feels like a real little market even though the setup is exactly the same as, say, a Rivet City. The ambient NPCs somehow feel much more vivid than in FO3 but I don't necessarily think this is a engine limitation. I think more idle animations, or at least the activations of ones that already exist more consistently, would help recreate a lot of the movements that make FO4 feel more alive.
This goes even to standing idles, or idles when holding a weapon. Even just standing, the NPC may shift their weight, shuffle a little bit, nothing too crazy yet these little things, multipled by a few dozen add that little bit of spice that oldbryo seems to lack. What do you think?