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MTBS' S-3D Gaming Anomaly Guide

MTBS' Official S-3D Gaming Anomaly Guide

By Neil Schneider and Yuriy Nikshych

While most stereoscopic 3D drivers do a pretty good job, many games are fraught with visual problems and anomalies that slip through the cracks.  As a reference tool for GameGrade3D (GG3D), this document was put together so members can easily classify and spot problems in their favourite games.  This document will be expanded and fine tuned with time and ideas from members.

All images presented here are in "cross-eyed" format (right image is on the left), and are viewable on most 3D display solutions.

 

Best Case Scenarios

These pictures demonstrate the optimal situation. The images feature the flexibility to have out of screen experiences, objects are rendered at the correct depths, and there are no visual anomalies or artifacts.

S-3D Best Case Example

S-3D Best Case Scenario Example

S-3D Best Case Example

While preferences are different from gamer to gamer as to whether or not they want a combined depth and pop-out experience, this is very important because it illustrates the flexibility that the game and driver solution offers.

 


Cut-out Shapes

S-3D Cut-out Sample

As shown above, cut-out shapes or strange borders appear on the side of the screen as you adjust the separation and/or convergence settings of the driver.  It could be even more pronounced with cut-outs happening around the characters and objects too.


Strange Textures

Flashing textures

Flashing textures in one eye.

In stereoscopic 3D mode, you may see textures that shouldn't be there. They may or may not be flashing.


Doubling Objects / Characters

Inappropriately doubled objects or image in one eye.

While the image may be rendered in stereoscopic 3D, one eye may have doubled objects or characters.



Vanishing Objects

Objects  disappear in one or both views.

Objects disappear in one or both eyes.


Object Depth

Inconsistent depth between objects.

The above image shows objects rendered at inconsistent depths where some are in 3D, and others are flat and float at screen depth.  This is usually the fault of the stereoscopic 3D driver.


Reflections

Proper  reflections in S-3D

The above image demonstrates reflections rendered properly.  Even in the mirror, the image has appropriate stereoscopic 3D qualities.

Poorly  rendered reflections in S-3D.

While roughly shown above, leading problems include reflections that don't appear, separation levels that are way too high, and more.





Shadows

Properly rendered shadows in S-3D

The above picture demonstrates what shadows should look like. Flushed against the ground or wall, and rendered at a depth appropriate for the scene.

Leading problems with shadows include:

Shadows  missing in one eye.

Shadow is missing in one eye.

 

Shadows   missing in one eye.

Shadows are missing altogether when they should be active.

 

Shadows   missing in one eye.

Shadows create a dark film in one or both eyes.

 

Shadows   missing in one eye.

Shadows are offset in one eye. They seem disconnected from the object they represent.

Shadows at screen depth.

The shadow is rendered at screen depth or in 2D compared to the rest of the scene. The shadow may seem to float off the ground or wall.



Fire & Smoke Effects

Shadows    missing in one eye.

This image demonstrates what fire or flames should look like. Even though it may or may not have full volumetric depth, it is rendered properly according to object placement.

Leading problems with fire, flames, and smoke include:

Shadows    missing in one eye.

Fire is offset in one eye.

Shadows    missing in one eye.

Fire is completely disconnected from its source.

Shadows    missing in one eye.

Fire is not visible in one eye.



Lights & Light Sources

Shadows       missing in one eye.

This image demonstrates lights and light sources rendered at the correct depth.

Top lighting errors include:

Shadows       missing in one eye.

Lighting slides off of light source in one or both views.

Light missing in one eye.

Lighting disappears in one eye.



Post Processing Effects

Doubled post processing effect.

Glow and aura effects double inappropriate in one or both eyes.


Unusual Performance Drop

Low performance

As shown above, stereoscopic 3D gaming mode causes unusual performance drop. Game performs like "a slide show".



User Interface

Proper User Interface / HUD

The above image demonstrates a properly rendered user interface. The HUD is whole, and regardless of S-3D settings, it doesn't slide off the screen or disappear as opposed to the image shown below:

Sliding user interface, poorly rendered.

 

Player Tags

Shadows        missing in one eye.

The above player tags are rendered properly in coordination with the depth of the objects they relate to.

Shadows      missing in one eye.

Unfortunatley, as shown above, many games render player tags at screen depth or as 2D objects.  While not considered a critical error, this undermines the S-3D experience, and can sometimes cause confusion during game play.



Skyline, Skybox, and Backdrop

Skyline is properly rendered at a depth relative to the rest of the scene.

While usually not rendered in volumetric 3D, it's still important that it has proper depth placement as shown above.

Skyline poorly rendered at screen depth.

When the skyline is rendered at screen depth or as a 2D object, it becomes a visual distraction.  It isn't necessary to have a perfect depth rendering, but when it is at screen depth, it is a distraction.




Conclusion

Thank you for reading this anomaly guide.  We recognize that it is difficult to classify every anomaly, and this guide will grow and improve with time.  What matters most is that readers are able to easily recognize and describe them when using utilities like GameGrade3D, or reporting problems to game and S-3D driver developer technical support.

Special thanks to Yuriy Nikshych for all the graphics work and MTBS members for helping list the top anomalies that impact their S-3D video games.