• Gray Horsfield has left Valve; Releases unseen "SOB" and Source Engine footage

    Discussion in 'News' started by -smash-, Apr 10, 2012.

    /Update: The videos have been removed from viewing by the author.
    /Update2: We have the video!
    /Update3: We have both videos! See below.

    We've come to learn that Gray Horsfield has left Valve Software. He began working there in 2006 and apparently parted ways this year.

    If you don't know him by name, then you probably know him by his work. He worked on the LOTR series as a visual FX artist at WETA Digital. More recently, he was responsible for the stunning destruction effects in Valve's games, like the bridge collapses in HL2: Episode Two, the opening container scene from Portal 2, and the zombie gibs in the Left 4 Dead series.

    We have also found that he released some videos that showcase his recent projects at Valve.

    The first video is a demo reel showing the various destruction and "many-body" scenes throughout their games. A lot of it is familiar to Valve fans, but there's also video from never-before-seen projects.

    There's some space stuff going on in the middle of the reel. Some of the scenes are reminiscent of the mysterious "SOB" project. (More "SOB" concept art)

    The fact that we're seeing all of this "SOB" stuff from more than one former Valve employee... Probably means that the NDA has lightened up in recent months. But why? Is it because the project has been canceled? Or is a reveal imminent?

    A second video is a tech demo, titled "swarm design test", and is the most fascinating scene of all. The style and technology in this is nothing that we've ever seen before from Valve.

    Gray tagged the video as "Giger" and with good reason. The environment in this Source Engine tech demo bears an eerie resemblance to the Alien movies.

    But the gist of the video shows a swarm of flying creatures, and I mean a F%#@KING SWARM OF FLYING CREATURES, chasing after some entity - a manhack in this instance.

    The technology in this demo requires a lot of CPU power, for the many instances of AI and physical bodies; CPU power that Gabe Newell himself has been promoting for the past year or so. And it requires some serious software engineering, of which we caught a glimpse of at Valve's Hardware Day in 2006.

    [Source: LambaGeneration]


Discussion in 'News' started by -smash-, Apr 10, 2012.

  1. Dr.IndianaJones
    Those were awesome. I hope the one is a new game they have been working on! Wait a sec, that HUD looks somewhat familiar...
  2. TechnoHippyChic
    Wow, yes, very nice stuff!

    confirmed for HL3 - steerable bird bridges
  3. -smash-
    I just realized that we actually saw some of this swarm stuff back in 2006, too, at Valve's Hardware Day http://www.anandtech.com/show/2114/6.

    "They had some demonstrations of swarms of creatures interacting more realistically with the environment, doing things like avoiding dangerous areas, toppling furniture, swarming opponents, etc. The number of creatures could also be increased depending on CPU power, so where a Core 2 Quad might be able to handle 500 creatures, a single core Pentium 4 could start to choke on only 80 or so creatures."
  4. -smash-
    Update: The videos have been set to private-only by the author.
  5. czfjrod
    Ha! I've been waiting for the day that Gray becomes famous, and I now state that I mentioned him before it was cool.

    By the way, those of you who also got the LoTR:RotK box set would know that Gray spent an entire Christmas holiday digitally recreating Barad-dur so that he could destroy it at the end of the film (spoiler alert). That's how awesome this guy is.
  6. Pepe Pérez
  7. ríomhaire
    "This video is private"

    Well done lads. Did anyone have the sense to download and re-upload the thing?
  8. Chris_D

    Slightly pissed off.
  9. trineas
  10. Chris_D
    We did get it from YouTube.

    Coming up shortly.
  11. Tollbooth Willie
    Yup. A 'cinematic destruction' set piece that was cut from Episode 1. Or maybe 2.
  12. Chris_D
    Video now embedded to the news post.
  13. Woozie321
    Wow, one of polish HL board members (Joz from headcrab.pl) posted this:

    So, we still don't know nothing about a spaceship and a fireball.
  14. Chris_D
    That is old. We uploaded that to our YouTube in 2007:

  15. Schru
    This was published before the Orange Box' release, just perhaps in a shorter version.

    Edit: Too late.
  16. Hobbax
    I miss that employer he make the best part from game , i really like to see his job from 2006 to 2012 and unfootaged half life 2 scene and sob concept art
    I'm interested to know more about SOB
  18. bobtheskull
    That swarm footage was awesome... reminded me a little of Pitch Black...
  19. MFL
    I want to pilot a swarm of snarks.
  20. Chris_D
    Original post updated with our copy of the Swarm video.
  21. <RJMC>
    I guess that can be considered our first footage of that upcoming game?
  22. DraGGon2k
    PLEASE what is that song called????
  23. Medevila
    Maybe this is what Valve's E3 booth is for- SOB reveal?
  24. Chris_D
    The long video is "Wooden Heart (I Wish I Had A) by David Holmes"
  25. Medevila
    Any other source on the 4:21 vid? Takes ages to buffer.
  26. Chris_D
    We're just uploading it to YouTube.
  27. Chris_D
    It's now available in our original news post via YouTube should buffer somewhat quicker now.
  28. toaster-chan
    I hope that swarm means more birds. I made friends with a seagull on my last playthrough of HL2 and in general more games should have more birds I think
  29. Absinthe

    EDIT: Oh wait, stukabats are much larger IIRC. Oh well. :(
  30. Danny_ZQ
    I thought the pillar type things looked sorta like Combine stuff and I got excited but then I noticed the title was a Technical Demo. :(
  31. Cra0kalo
    Love his cinematic destruction work I bet he uses Rayfire to do it
  32. Stigmata
    Gray Horsefield sounds like a really weird game.
  33. Iron Kat
    He single-handedly did the destruction of Barad-Dur in LOTR. Over the Christmas holiday's he built a full 3D CGI model of the tower and then did the destruction of it. I still think it's one of the most stunning pieces of animation in the whole trilogy.
  34. czfjrod
    I think this says enough about both him and Bay Raitt (1:24):