Source Particle Benchmark

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|name=Source Particle Benchmark
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|developer=Valve
|date=2007
|genre=WikipediaBenchmark (computing)|Benchmark, WikipediaFirst-person shooter|first-person shooter
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|platform=WikipediaMicrosoft Windows|Windows
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|engine=Source
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The '''Source Particle Benchmark''', also known as the '''Multicore CPU Particle Simulation Benchmark''', is a late 2006 WikipediaBenchmark (computing)|benchmark which introduced some of the new and more advanced features of the Source engine and Valve's hybrid threading technology, such as dynamic shadows and particle-based effects, and their performance on multi-core processors. It contains several scripts, models, textures and a single demonstration map where five rooms can be visited, four of which containing particle effects. As part of a larger series of several benchmarks (see below), it was given by Valve to some visitors at http//www.gdconf.com/ GDC 2007,{{Fact}} as well as other people.http//www.hardocp.com/article/2006/11/06/valve_softwares_source_engine_multithreaded_preview/4 Valve Software's Source Engine Multi-Threaded Preview on Hard|OCP

==Overview==
FileParticle benchmark main room.jpg|The central room, with the button.|thumb|200px|right
*The Source Particle Benchmark pack consists of three folders
*The first, named "map compilation benchmark", allows to compile a map set in the ''Episode One'' Citadel, ep1_citadel_03, through the file "build_map.bat" to see how long it takes for the used computer to compile a map.http//www.hardocp.com/article/2006/11/06/valve_softwares_source_engine_multithreaded_preview/4 Valve Software's Source Engine Multi-Threaded Preview on Hard|OCP As it is not to be played, the map is incomplete.
*The second folder, named "particle simulation benchmark", contains the main test map, particle_benchmark, where the particle effects are showcased (to be launched with the file "particle_benchmark.bat" located in the subfolder "game"). To view them, the player has to trigger them with a button with under it the sign "Particle Benchmark", conveniently placed in the middle of the central room connected to the four other rooms, then a demo will showcase the four effects in their respective rooms. The player can also walk themself into the rooms to view the effects from different angles. When all effects have been viewed with the button, a benchmark score named "Particle Performance Metric" is displayed on the top-right of the screen. This is a representation of the amount of particles per second (in thousands) that the CPU is able to calculate.http//www.hardocp.com/article/2006/11/06/valve_softwares_source_engine_multithreaded_preview/4 Valve Software's Source Engine Multi-Threaded Preview on Hard|OCP If the player has a highly equipped computer, the score will be high (more than 100, for instance). If not, the score will be low (around 35, for instance).
*The third and last folder, "presentation slides", contains a PowerPoint presentation, named "multicore_hardware_day.ppt" and dated November 1st, 2006, about the new features of the Source engine, and their relation to multi-core processors. All files are dated October 27, 2006 or November 1st, 2006.
FileParticle benchmark waterfall.jpg|The particle waterfall.|thumb|200px|left
*In the Particle Benchmark script files, some information about the early stages of the development of ''Half-Life 2 Episode Two'' can be found
*The file "level_voices_episode_02.txt" shows that two characters cut from the final game, Cyril and Fred, are mentioned. They were to be seen in the map "outland_06" near the bridge where the Muscle Car is found, and say several things together and to the other protagonists.
*The file "level_voices_episode_02.txt" also reveals that the G-Man heart-to-heart monologue with Gordon Freeman originally was to be much longer.
*The file "level_voices_episode_02.txt" also contains the sound files related to Alyx Vance's Alyx Vance the scenes|fall at the start of the game in the map "outland_01", featured in the http//store.steampowered.com/app/916/ first ''Episode Two'' teaser trailer.
*The previous elements are still present in the version of "level_voices_episode_02.txt" found in the retail ''Episode Two'' files.
*A rainy level was planned at some point, likely to showcase particle effects.
*The background texture used in the Particle Benchmark menu appears to be a blurry screenshot of an early version of the railway bridge featured at the beginning of ''Half-Life 2 Episode Two''.
FileParticle benchmark npc surface.jpg|The entity "npc_surface" spawned in-game.|thumb|200px|right
*A colored entity named "npc_surface", used to simulate dynamic liquids, can be spawned using a console command "give npc_surface". Interestingly, its model is named "Hydra.mdl", but it appears to be different and cannot be found in the files. When touched, it takes away 5 health points. Hydra textures can also be found in the texture files. According to Erik Wolpaw, the experiment behind "npc_surface" was applied to the Mobility Gels in ''Portal 2'', with additional influence from ''Tag The Power of Paint''.http//www.next-gen.biz/features/portal-2-preview ''Portal 2'' Preview on Edge Magazine
*Another entity, "npc_blob", can be spawned in-game. The model is broken, and it appears as several "ERROR" models jumping randomly. When spawning, the console displays "Late precache of models/headcrab.mdl" and "Late precache of models/w_squeak.mdl", suggesting a relation with the Classic Headcrab|Headcrab and the Snark. Copy/pasting the Snark model from ''Half-Life Source'' in the model files replaces the "ERROR" model, showing the proper result, thus Snarks jumping randomly. It does not hurt the player. It appears that this entity was used for another similar demonstration, Snark Environmental Interaction demonstrational room|Dynamic Environmental Interaction, showing Snarks' reaction to environment objects.
*The console reveals that the username in use is "ErikJ", or http//www.mobygames.com/developer/sheet/view/developerId,6359/ Erik Johnson, project manager at Valve.
*The cfg file "leipzig.cfg" found in the files, and also featured in the ''Episode Two'' files, lists the five ''Episode Two'' "Gameplay Videos" showcased in September 2006.http//www.youtube.com/user/CombineOverWiki?feature=mhee/2F63F747C3E6D365 ''Episode Two'' video playlist on YouTube
*In the folder "demo" of the ''Episode Two'' texture files can be found more other demo signs, showing that the Particle Benchmark was only one of many demos. They include "Adaptive Density", "AI Test Lab", "Chow Time", "Complex Collision Detection", "Dynamic Environmental Interaction", "Physics Integration", and "Precision + Coordination". The Particle Benchmark sign can also be found there, but it is spelled "Particle Simulation Benchmark" instead of "Particle Benchmark".
*Two Source Filmmaker movies created in ''Half-Life 2 Episode One'' can be found in the "episodic\elements\sessions" directory.
*The file "ep2\reslists\unreferenced_files.lst" lists all ''Episode Two'' files existing as of October 2006.

==Gallery==



FileParticle benchmark dynamic shadows.jpg|Dynamic shadow produced by a flashlight.
FileParticle benchmark rain02.jpg|The particle rain, seen from inside.
FileParticle benchmark aurora.jpg|The particle energy ring.
FileParticle benchmark sphere.jpg|The particle sphere.
FileParticle benchmark rain01.jpg|The particle rain.
FileParticle benchmark npc blob.jpg|The entity "npc_blob" spawned in-game, with fixed models.
FileParticle benchmark console bg.png|Background menu texture, showing a location called Riverbed.
FileParticle Simulation Benchmark.svg|The Particle Benchmark sign as seen in the ''Episode Two'' texture files.


==References==
{{Reflist}}

==External links==
*http//www.hardocp.com/article/2006/11/06/valve_softwares_source_engine_multithreaded_preview/4 Valve Software's Source Engine Multi-Threaded Preview on Hard|OCP

{{Games}}
CategoryHalf-Life 2 Episode Two
CategoryTechnology demos
CategoryPre-release builds
CategoryNon-canon games