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Titan rumours/speculation with a credible source


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#1
Euph

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*UPDATED* - See bottom of this post.

This is a thread for everyone to speculate on any credible information they find and if you do post it'd be helpful if you could use a similar format to mine. E.g. Title, What is it, Speculation, Additional info. Oh, and of course this thread was inspired by the Titan rumors without any credible source thread created by papaz.

Please take the following with a pinch of salt because we're in the rumours phase so everything is speculation. Plus, I'm new so if you see me going over the same topics feel free to bash my head in.

Okay so the following points are pieces of information attached to speculation, sort of like a rumour but with credible sources. I'd also like to take this opportunity to say that I don't know the intricacies of how game development works so again, bash my head in if I'm being stupid. The ultimate purpose of this thread/post is to show the community information you've found and your thoughts on it, hopefully this gives everyone equal opportunity to come to their own conclusions on the glimmers of info.

Info 1 - Blizzard acquires city generating software in 2009 (Sources: Sauce 1, Sauce 2)

What is it? Basically, Blizzard bought a license to use CityEngine, an application used to generate cities based on variables controlled by the user.

Speculation:

S1 - A skeptical explanation is that this is just software used to create maps in Starcraft II. However, considering they only licensed it a year before* the games' release (July 27th 2010), this seems less likely... although it could've been used for some polishing off.

*assuming they licensed in 2009 as per the press release + software is called CityEngine 2009.2

S2 - A hopeful explanation is that the software is used to create cities used in Titan; it would make the job of having lots of large stylistic cities much easier. It also fits in with the idea of the MMO being next-gen by having huge sprawling cities/areas.


Further digging: Looking into it further I found a job description for a Matte Painting Artist that mentioned: "Experience with Vue, World Machine and City Engine is a plus". This tells us three things: One, that the licensing of the software is exclusively for the cinematics team as I can't find it mentioned anywhere outside that department. Two, that the software is still something they intend to use. Three, it also makes a very strong case for the software being used in the Starcraft II cinematics and on further inspection it seemed to almost be confirmed, atleast in my mind.

However, there is still a glimmer of hope; they're still recruiting and looking for some skill with the application. This implies that they still intend to use it, perhaps in an upcoming cinematic, perhaps for Titan. So, it's a possibility. Also, even the idea of having huge generated cities could link in with the mention by Panigg, an ex-GM, that it would appeal to sims players. Cities = houses.

Info 2 - The mysterious page of Kotaku. (Sources: Inset into below)

What is it? Basically, Kotaku posted a timeline of the Titan updates in September 2012 (article last updated 25th Oct 2012) and because they've ported their blog site to Tumblr or something posts before October aren't able to be seen. Luckily, you can still catch some info in the google caches of the pages! Initially I thought Blizz had asked them to take it down, until I realised about the tumblr thing.

An interesting timeline
A nice round-up of some more concrete things to do with the MMO.

An interesting mention of a game artist
The implications of latter link are interesting as Nick Carver's work is generally steam-punk and sci-fi focused as well as landscape orientated. Make of that what you will.


UPDATE:
Did some more digging recently and found an interesting thing... I came across the following by doing a site restricted search for 'Titan', restricted to the website 'blizzard.com' as linked o in the 'Sauce' link below.

Edit 2: Sorta been debunked, leaving this up for hopefulness purposes, reason at end of info 3.

Info 3 - The mysterious link to titan video on Blizzards' website (Sources: Sauce, Page in question)

What is it? Basically, it's a webpage that showed up on google for a video on the Blizzard website. The actual page shows no video nor video title.

Further digging: I looked into the page source for a link to the original video which led me to this, a page that states "File not found". The directory tree (/blizzard/movies/games/titan/blizzard2011/titan-blizzard2011-en_us.flv) lends me to believe it was a very early folder for a possible blizzcon 2011 reveal, or it may have something to do with Path of the titans but I feel doubtful as the videos in the site are for very large things and not specific features, plus it is in the games folder. I tried tinkering with the link but to no avail, it would be great if anyone else could find something.

One big thing I did notice though, is that when you change the link in the top (I'm talking about the actual page) to something else i.e. http://eu.blizzard.c...OLBOYS:features it still comes up as the same layout and in the source code the directory tree is merely edited to: (/blizzard/movies/games/titanLOLBOYS/blizzard2011/titanLOLBOYS-blizzard2011-en_us.flv). This would seem to disprove my theory about a video. But the interesting thing is that the link for the titan one came up on Google and I attempted typing in again random terms site restricted to Blizzard but nothing similar came up.

So anyways, that's the update. Maybe a lot of hot air, or maybe a forgotten strand. Make of it what you will.

UPDATE 2:
mynsc made a few really good points as to why the link was on google and why if it was a credible thing Blizz wouldn't call it 'Titan':
Spoiler


P.S Please feel free to comment on anyones findings, it's what a forum is for!

Hopefully this catches on as we get more information, and I hope you enjoyed reading. If anyone posts anything I'll edit into this main post with your name as a credit.

Euph.

Edited by Euph, 02 November 2012 - 06:09 PM.

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#2
mynsc

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Info 1 - Blizzard acquires city generating software in 2009 (Sources: Sauce 1, Sauce 2)

What is it? Basically, Blizzard bought a license to use CityEngine, an application used to generate cities based on variables controlled by the user.

Speculation:

S1 - A skeptical explanation is that this is just software used to create maps in Starcraft II. However, considering they only licensed it a year before* the games' release (July 27th 2010), this seems less likely... although it could've been used for some polishing off.

*assuming they licensed in 2009 as per the press release + software is called CityEngine 2009.2

S2 - A hopeful explanation is that the software is used to create cities used in Titan; it would make the job of having lots of large stylistic cities much easier. It also fits in with the idea of the MMO being next-gen by having huge sprawling cities/areas.

Further digging: Looking into it further I found a job description for a Matte Painting Artist that mentioned: "Experience with Vue, World Machine and City Engine is a plus". This tells us three things: One, that the licensing of the software is exclusively for the cinematics team as I can't find it mentioned anywhere outside that department. Two, that the software is still something they intend to use. Three, it also makes a very strong case for the software being used in the Starcraft II cinematics and on further inspection it seemed to almost be confirmed, atleast in my mind.


However, there is still a glimmer of hope; they're still recruiting and looking for some skill with the application. This implies that they still intend to use it, perhaps in an upcoming cinematic, perhaps for Titan. So, it's a possibility. Also, even the idea of having huge generated cities could link in with the mention by Panigg, an ex-GM, that it would appeal to sims players. Cities = houses.


You kept me right on the edge of my seat through out this entire fragment. Great stuff. :D

I have to agree with the idea that it's related to the cinematics team / SC2. I'm guessing that for Titan, Blizzard will focus on creating and using its own tools. They've actually said that they're building everything from the ground up, starting with game engine and creation / editing tools.

It's quite possible they might be using external software too and this might be one example, but as it looks now, it's probably used for cinematics. Including the ones we'll have for Titan, as I'm guessing part of the action will take place into a heavy-industrialized setting.

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#3
Euph

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Thanks for the first reply! :p Personally, I think you've got it spot on and this is what I love about open-ended information, it allows anyone to come in and work it out against what they already know; it's almost unmediated.

Just updated the post with another interesting line of inspection I came upon today.

Euphoric, Titan Fan Fiction. Go read it! 

We see things as we are, not as they are. - Harold Grayson

Be appreciative of today and excited for tomorrow - EuphEmoticon.png

 

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#4
mynsc

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About the 3rd thing, I don't think there's anything to it. I've stumbled on this before on Blizzard's site. It automatically generates pages for pretty much any parameters you give. Not sure why it would show up on Google. I guess the search engine somehow indexed the page, probably thanks to a direct submission or another curious investigator. :D Like you, someone probably linked that page on another site and Google followed the link, adding to its database.

Also, I doubt Blizzard would ever use "titan" as a category for the game. Not only it's not the game's real name, but it's also much easier to discover as everyone knows it. If they'd create a category using the real hidden name of the game, they'd risk much less.

Nice "digging" skills though. :D

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#5
rs10rs10

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Interesting read Euph, very well done!

"Rogues guard the secrets to poison-making carefully, lest magi start incorporating poison into their spells. Poisonbolt? Rain of Poison? Poison Elemental? Nobody wants that."


#6
Euph

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Thanks both, and yeah mynsc I did try to explain that changing parameters thing in my post but I just let all the text come out as brain-mess so it was probably difficult to understand! You make a good point both about the reason it comes up on google and the name 'titan'. Gonna add those points to the post. :)

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We see things as we are, not as they are. - Harold Grayson

Be appreciative of today and excited for tomorrow - EuphEmoticon.png

 

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#7
Sarnakyle

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It's amazing how a little bit of discussion on this game reignites my excitement! Welcome Euph, glad to have you aboard the TF crew :D It's nice to have some noise made on the site again (in fact your using dynamite) and I'm really enjoying what I've read by you so far. This artical is a great example. Most of the time I feel like we have beat'n the dead horse more than once in our theorycrafting, then someone stumbles on some info or digs up something and gets us clamoring all over again :) I won't be able to read the rest of your posts until later tonight but now I'm excited for my evening

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#8
Silverthorn

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Great work Euph! This really reignited my Titan-fire. Thank you. :)
I wish I had a Sherlock Holmes in me.

#9
Eremite

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Wonderful post Euph, and it got me thinking again. It's great to have another theorist in the mix!

P.S. I've been super busy the last couple weeks, but I've got another theory of my own brewing. Hopefully soon I'll add that to this fire. ;)

#10
Sarnakyle

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@Eremite
Post it Soooooonnn :D

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#11
Euph

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It's amazing how a little bit of discussion on this game reignites my excitement! Welcome Euph, glad to have you aboard the TF crew :D It's nice to have some noise made on the site again (in fact your using dynamite) and I'm really enjoying what I've read by you so far. [...] now I'm excited for my evening

Thanks a whole lot for the feedback Sarnakyle (may I call you Sarna? :p) I think the aim of my writing is always to get someone thinking and to get them feeling something, so your wonderfully generous feedback is almost too much to handle! Thanks so much and thanks for the mini-welcome. P.S. Love that dynamite analogy.

Great work Euph! This really reignited my Titan-fire. Thank you. :)
I wish I had a Sherlock Holmes in me.

Thanks to you too and same as above in my reply to Sarna. Except this time my question is: may I call you Silver? Oh, and I wish I had a Sherlock in me as well. The key... isn't some secret skill. It's just the willingness to try to come to your own conclusions on limited sources - of course it'll be much easier to speculate when we've got some solid info. Everyone is capable of detective work and I'm certainly no innovator. :)

Wonderful post Euph, and it got me thinking again. It's great to have another theorist in the mix!

P.S. I've been super busy the last couple weeks, but I've got another theory of my own brewing. Hopefully soon I'll add that to this fire. ;)

I'd use the term 'theorist' loosely when describing myself. I look forward to hearing the theory you are brewing for, after that front-page post I you can do no wrong. :unworthy:

Euphoric, Titan Fan Fiction. Go read it! 

We see things as we are, not as they are. - Harold Grayson

Be appreciative of today and excited for tomorrow - EuphEmoticon.png

 

Notable Threads: Lore Focus: Blizzard and Real-World Mythology ? Lore Focus: Titan, Earth and Mythology ? Gaming Addiction: Do you have it? What is it?


#12
VladimirStukov

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If you think Titan will be a historical MMO or have time travel, you can rule out the WW2 era. This is from Kenny Carvalho, character art manager for Titan:

My recommendation is to do this yourself at this stage in your career. You should take the act of looking for a job as a full time job. Do your own research on different companies. What are you looking for? Is it location? A company that makes games you like? A studio that is stable? All of the above? Also, make sure you have artwork that is relevant for the company that you apply to. Don't send a WW2 tank model to Blizzard Entertainment for example. Try and match the style and content that the company is working on. This is almost like taking a test for the company without getting an official art test. This will also show the hiring manager(s) that you are really interested in the company.

http://www.polycount...00&postcount=25



#13
mynsc

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Nice find! :) Thing is, he might just be referring to Blizzard's public projects, that's how I take it at least. An aspiring candidate wouldn't have any way to know about Titan and the other classified projects, so I don't think Carvalho meant to include these in his statement.

 

This being said, chances are high that Titan has little to do with WW2 tanks. :D Even with time travel / parallel dimensions or whatever, its main theme will probably be related to the near-future period.


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#14
Eremite

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If you think Titan will be a historical MMO or have time travel, you can rule out the WW2 era. This is from Kenny Carvalho, character art manager for Titan:

 

Interesting connection!  I remember reading this before, but never had that particular thought.

 

Personally, I don't think any link can be drawn between what he said and Titan.  He was speaking very generally, telling artists to do things themselves as well as use common sense when submitting art to companies.  For example, you wouldn't submit a jazz recording when auditioning for a classical symphony orchestra; Carvalho makes it sound like some graphic artists try to do something similar in their field.

 

He was simply referencing all of a company's published work, which any serious graphic artist would be wise to look at if applying for a position.  How in the world could the average artist looking for a job definitively know what kind of art design to submit for a future secret project, that possibly goes in a new conceptual direction?  The logic doesn't stand up to me - he was talking about documented, past content.

 

That being said, if Carvalho has any idea what is going on over on the Titan Project, he might avoid saying something like this, knowing in the back of his mind what is to appear down the line.  He might have picked a better example in other words.  So I think you're right, but not because of what Carvalho said. 

 

Edit: Looks like mynsc beat me to it ;)


Edited by Eremite, 16 December 2012 - 12:48 PM.


#15
VladimirStukov

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I'd agree with you if it weren't for the fact that Carvalho has been recruiting hard for Titan on the polycount forum since 2008 and has been on the Titan team himself since June 2011. I don't think he would use that specific example and discourage people from sending in WW2 art if that were going to be a part of the game he is working on.



#16
DiveDown

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In the job directory there's this posting "Lead 3D Environment Artist, Architecture" with an exclamation mark. 

 

If you go there, you can see "Requirements" and "Pluses". For the last one, there's a hint, that the architectural artworks will also feature historical buildings, much like I described in this post (last section).

 

"Strong foundation in the traditional arts, including but not limited to environmental and / or architectural illustration" (source)

 

TRADITIONAL means "old, ancient, aged, stale". 

 

Jeffrey Kaplan was asked:

 

So is Blizzard's new MMO going to be sci-fi, near-future, post-apocalyptic or historical? "All of those combined!" he said, laughing. (source)

 

With that job posting requirement and Kaplans statement in mind, "historical" - now seems to be a (absolutely confirmed) fix part of Titan's world. Now, like over here (gun question), we also have two hints of this being true.



#17
mynsc

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I think you're reading a bit too much into all this Marco. Nothing is even close to being absolutely confirmed and these juxtapositions between different ambiguous phrases can be quite misleading. I appreciate your dedication and hell, maybe in some ways you'll be proven right, but what we currently have, namely the quotes you provided in the last few posts, I don't think can paint a clear picture.


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#18
mynsc

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It was just my opinion as a Titan enthusiast, like all you guys. I'm sure that some / many will agree with your point, and like I said, you might be right, it's just that I thought this certain post was not going anywhere.

 

I definitely would like it if you'd continue posting, as I actually agree with some of your other assumptions. That being said, I also would like it if you'd be more open to any type of feedback and wouldn't react too harshly to it.


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#19
DiveDown

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Dear TF community,

 

I am constantly tracking several Blizzard guys  :shuriken: , and at about an hour ago, something strange popped up;

Micah Whipple (Bashiok) wrote:

 

"Goal for 2013: Invent new types of bipedal-friendly portals and enclosures." (source)

 

Some think this might point to an implementation of player housing. Maybe it's a tiny little hint of their next-gen MMO, maybe not - but as Mynsc stated, there is a possibility that we could see time travel in Titan, so Micah's post really makes sense.

 

This could lead us to some interesting speculation :stuart:  Feel free to comment on this.

 

greetings

Marco



#20
Eremite

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He was making a joke about the new raid in WoW coming in patch 5.2, which Blizzard gave a sneak preview of here.  It's got a giant door to the raid instead of a portal.

 

So this was merely a follow up on his earlier tweet -

"Hah. People complaining about the new raid having a door. (srsly) We’re doing something right if that’s the best ya got. ;)"

 

There's nothing to it.