I'm a professional game developer from Wakefield, England, working as a senior programmer for Rebellion North.
I'm a married father of five and I a also sometimes do Retroburn stuff.
Martin 'Bytrix' Caine
Father. C++ Games Programmer. Cyclist. Guitarist.
2013 3d alphalabs amazon apple archivirtual asynchronous battlefield bad company 2 ben 10 bepu beta blackmagic design blog blue marble bootcamp borderlands bsp calibration charity charvel childsplay comments competition content tracker counter-strike crash csgo css3 cycling dear esther deferred deus ex develop conference direct x discipline documentation doom 3 bfg dpi dr bott eidos elite force email deliverability eurogamer expo facebook focus fresnel game development game horizon game republic gamedev games gaming geoip girls make games global offensive grid guitar half-life 2 hawken hd7 hobbyist htc humble indie bundle imac indie indie trials indietrials intensity pro ip-countryside iron man 3 jamulus rift jquery kids kinect launch conference left 4 dead live lost mac mac osx manchester manhacks mass effect 2 matrox maya minecraft mirrors edge montreal morrowind movies museum of the microstar music mxo2 mini mysql nausea network networking nokia normal mapping obj oculus rift omnitrix ouya pedal for pounds php physics playstation suite port25 portal portal 2 positron posters powermta project aedra project euler promotion properties proton pulse ps vita ps4 psn racer reddit rendering retroburn game studios reviews rift racer riftracer roadkill roller coaster sdl2 shadow racers sharks shoct skyrifters snds space cadet spam trap star trek steam stencyl storage super stock sd1 fr superhot team fortress 2 tesselating tesselation texture editor thunderbird thunderclap ticktock games tiga track builder track bulder trials tv twitter uk ultimatrix usergroup vequencer video vireio visual assist visual studio vorpx voucher vr vr cinema war thunder warren web willow windows 8 windows 8.1 windows phone 7 workbench wp7 wp7dev xbla xblig xblig network xbox xbox live indie games xna xnaukug xperia play zombies on the holodeck
Email Deliverability
Sunday, June 23rd 2013 / Gaming
It's been a little while since my last post. I've actually still been trying demos but have also been working on Star Trek Voyager: Elite Force Rift which is coming along nicely.

A few days ago I received an email from Ralf Ostertag the creator of vorpX with an invitation to try out the latest beta of his 3D driver.

Read the full article...
Tags:   3d   dear esther   gaming   grid   left 4 dead   mass effect 2   oculus rift   vorpx   vr
Friday, June 14th 2013 / Gaming
It's been a while since I posted my previous entry in this series, I've spent the last few weeks working very hard on Positron and Z: Steel Soldiers. I've literally had no time to even check out any new Rift demos.

Then late lastnight just before bed I saw someone mention on Facebook that the -vr flag now works in Portal, so I just had to check it out this morning!

Read the full article...
Tags:   3d   gaming   oculus rift   portal   vr
Saturday, June 1st 2013 / Gaming
Today was more of a development day, having been in at work for most of the day I got home and was in the mood for some more coding so I loaded up the Elite Force Rift solution and got the ioSTVEF VM compiling, was pleasantly surprised that the patches worked even though the ioQuake3 source has changed somewhat since ioSTVEF was last updated.

Read the full article...
Friday, May 31st 2013 / Gaming
Didn't have much time to play with the Rift today, got a major milestone to reach on a project at work and have been working on that in my own time too.

I did however find a little time to try out a little racing game but unfortunately had issues with it. Fortunately though my T Shirt and poster arrived!

Read the full article...
Tags:   3d   elite force   gaming   oculus rift   racer   star trek   vr
Thursday, May 30th 2013 / Gaming
There really seems to be a lot more demos popping up over the past few days and not only that but some of the earlier demos are now receiving updates which is cool so there's plenty of new stuff to try.

I downloaded Unity for the first time this weekend and had a quick look over it. As a professional games programmer I've always dismissed Unity as a tool for those who aren't capable of programming a game from the ground up themselves but the recent demos I've been seeing have been quite impressive hence the reason I've decided to give it a chance.

Read the full article...
Tags:   3d   elite force   gaming   oculus rift   star trek   vr   vr cinema
Wednesday, May 29th 2013 / Gaming
First, let me start by saying Proton Pulse is my favourite Rift experience thus far! It's simply amazing and is a shining example of what the Rift was built for.

With its bright neon VR graphics it immerses you in the game world where you simply use your head to control a virtual paddle in what is effectively a 3D game of breakout.

Read the full article...
Tags:   3d   gaming   oculus rift   proton pulse   vr
Tuesday, May 28th 2013 / Gaming
After trying Jamulus Rift, another little demo I saw posted on the Oculus forums was a small space based shooter called Space Cadet.

I downloaded the game and tried it out. I spent a minute trying to figure out how to control my space craft before realising that it was fixed on a 2D plane within 3D space. This works well but I'd still love to play a full 3D space flight game with my Rift.

Read the full article...
Tags:   3d   gaming   oculus rift   space cadet   vr
Monday, May 27th 2013 / Gaming
Today I noticed a few new demos had popped up on the Oculus Forums and the Oculus sub-reddit. One that caught my eye was a game jam entry entitled Jamulus Rift.

The game is a lane based racing game in similar style to say Audio Surf or Switch Galaxy.

Read the full article...
Tags:   3d   gaming   jamulus rift   oculus rift   vr
Sunday, May 26th 2013 / Gaming
Since FRAPS seemed to work pretty well yesterday recording some Doom 3 BFG footage, I decided today I'd record some gameplay from Half-Life 2.

I've not get too far in to the game just yet, only been playing in short bursts but during this 12 minutes I recorded I came up against the first few rounds of Manhacks.

Read the full article...
Tags:   3d   gaming   half-life 2   manhacks   oculus rift   vr
Saturday, May 25th 2013 / Gaming
This time round I had intended to try out one of my old Doom 3 maps with Doom 3 BFG but after downloading it and dropping it in to the game directory I came up against a couple of problems.

Firstly I couldn't access the console, a quick Google search showed me how to do that from command line. Then on loading the map it gave me an error due to incorrect format of a monster model in the game.

Read the full article...
Tags:   3d   doom 3 bfg   gaming   oculus rift   video   vr
Friday, May 24th 2013 / Gaming
Having tried an earlier build of Rift Racer last week I have to say I was very pleased to see the developer of the small sandbox racing demo had updated it to include two new maps!

Rift Racers v4 now includes a small city map to race around it and a small race track.

Read the full article...
Tags:   3d   gaming   oculus rift   rift racer   vr
Thursday, May 23rd 2013 / Gaming
This time round I took to Twitter to see what people could recommend that I try on my Oculus Rift. One suggestion was that I try out an aerial combat game, War Thunder.

A recent forum posting had been made on their forums showing how to get the game running in the Rift so I saved the link and set the game downloading (it's free) when I got home from work.

Read the full article...
Tags:   3d   gaming   oculus rift   vr   war thunder
Wednesday, May 22nd 2013 / Gaming
Just a small update today compared to previous days since I had a lot of work to do. I was going to try out my old Doom 3 maps but saw in my downloads directory I had a demo called Zombies On The Holodeck.

I was surprised I hadn't tried this one yet so unzipped it and had a quick go. This is another little game made in Unity but it's actually a pretty nice wave-based zombie survival shooter.

Read the full article...
Tuesday, May 21st 2013 / Gaming
Today I wanted to try out a few more demos but after looking through most of the lists of what was available to download I have to say I was a little disappointed that most of it looked either pretty basic, or doesn't quite have proper support for the Rift yet. I did manage to try a few small demos but in the end I had another 10 minutes on Doom 3, now in Mars City just after all hell breaks loose.

Read the full article...
Tags:   3d   doom 3 bfg   gaming   oculus rift   roller coaster   video   vr
Monday, May 20th 2013 / Gaming
Today I thought I'd experiment a bit with a few of the smaller demos being developed by the Oculus Rift community.

Rather annoyingly it's actually pretty hard to find downloads for the demos that are available. There are various forums out there with threads and videos but in the end I found riftenabled.com which gives a nice list of games in development or released with the download links.

Read the full article...
Sunday, May 19th 2013 / Gaming
I had intended to write about Hawken and Doom 3 again today but FRAPS seemed to stop capturing my screenshots so instead I thought I'd check out one of the smaller demo apps I'd downloaded.

Museum of the Microstar is a visually impressive Unity-made application which is set inside a futuristic museum, teaching the history of the Earth and it's destruction.

Read the full article...
Saturday, May 18th 2013 / Gaming
Today I was torn between trying Hawken or Doom 3 BFG but I went with the latter as it's one of my old favourites. The BFG version of Doom 3 includes slightly improved visuals over the original, extra missions that never made it in the original release and a few other extras (like stereoscopic rendering) which make it perfect for the Rift.

Unfortunately, when John Carmack originally added Rift support in to the game the SDK was completely different. It was all hard coded to work with the original prototype units and doesn't work correctly with the new Developer Kits. Since the source is available however some clever modders have taken it upon themselves to put the Oculus code back in to the game and have released the binaries so we can use them in our Doom 3 BFG installations.

Read the full article...
Tags:   3d   doom 3 bfg   gaming   normal mapping   oculus rift   vr
Friday, May 17th 2013 / Gaming
Yesterday I didn't have much time to play with the Rift but I did manage to play a little Half-Life 2. Since I've already covered Half-Life 2 in my configuration efforts in previous days I think I'll just show some pretty cool parts from the start of the game which look particularly good when wearing the Rift.

Read the full article...
Tags:   3d   gaming   half-life 2   vr
Thursday, May 16th 2013 / Gaming
So today I really wanted to try out Portal with the Rift. Unfortunately Valve have not rolled out Rift support to titles like Portal, Portal 2, Left 4 Dead, or Left 4 Dead 2, so the only option currently is to use the Vireio driver.

After my less than optimal experience with the driver on previous days I looked in to the SHOCT calibration some more, read through the whole guide on how to properly calibrate it and loaded up Portal.

Read the full article...
Tags:   3d   calibration   gaming   oculus rift   portal   shoct   vireio   vr
Wednesday, May 15th 2013 / Gaming
Today I had a little more spare time so I took the time to check out the new Minecrift (yes that's how it's spelt) mod for Minecraft. It's not exactly the most straight-forward thing to install since you have to modify your minecraft.jar file and install some VC++ 2012 runtime packages but once I got it running it worked surprisingly well in-game.

Read the full article...
Tags:   3d   calibration   gaming   half-life 2   minecraft   oculus rift   vr
Tuesday, May 14th 2013 / Gaming
Yesterday I decided not to play with the Rift after work as I'd felt a bit ill all day and didn't want to make it worse, so to cover my third day with the Rift I think I'll share a few observations I've made during my first two days using the device.

Read the full article...
Monday, May 13th 2013 / Gaming
Following on from Day One and my severe nausea, I decided to have a go at calibrating the Rift to try and improve my experience.

First up I wanted to try out Team Fortress 2 and I knew it had an in-built calibration tool which is supposed to be able to accurately determine your IPD (Interpupillary Distance) which as I mentioned in the previous article, helps to accurately place the virtual cameras to simulate your own eyes looking in to the 3D scene.

Read the full article...
Sunday, May 12th 2013 / Gaming
My Oculus Rift turned up a couple of days ago and I got it all set up and played around with it for a while yesterday morning.

The Rift itself is pretty easy to set up, the control box attached to the headset has power, USB and HDMI connections which all need plugged in and then you switch it on. The PC (or in this case my iMac running Windows 7 via bootcamp with an HDMI->DisplayPort adapter) will auto switch to 1280x800 and mirror the rift screen to the monitor.

Read the full article...
Tags:   3d   gaming   half-life 2   mirrors edge   nausea   oculus rift   vr