GameDev IT and Tech

CryENGINE3 and multiple developers

Ok so every since I started using CryENGINE 3, it works fine when I screw around with the engine on solo projects but is almost always a huge nightmare where I have to add another person onto the project. Why? Because for the longest period of time, sharing .CRY files with team members meant I always had to worry about a file corruption error. Turns out CryTEK accidentally got rid of the old file access permissions error and replaced it with an error that said “files could be corrupt”.

I’ve been working on the Yours Truly Project with Brandon to get it ready for showcasing at th Level Up event at the Design Exchange on April 3rd, 2013 as well as the Toronto Global Game Jam arcade at Bento Miso later in the month. For a while things were ok because I was able to open the cry file he did the terrain and vegetation on and I just worked on a seperate layer. Now during the polishing phase we’re running into file corruption errors yet we know the files aren’t corrupt because the level runs in the launcher just fine.

We tried everything we could and then I was reading on CryDev about something with regards to people who were having corruption issues but the solution was because the login script couldn’t connect to the server properly. That led me to think, “what if I logged in with my credentials on Brandon’s computer?”. So I went over to Brandon’s Alienware (go team alienware!) fired up the editor, logged in with my own CryDEV credentials and proceeded to open the file. Fingers crossed, I clicked on the open button and then…………………… BAM….. FILES LOADED SUCCESSFULLY!!

Who would have thought the Files Could Be Corrupted error was really an access rights thing? Got Brandon to join Team Whisky Tango Foxtrot on CryDev.Net and added him as working on Yours Truly and so far we’ve had no problems.

The take away from the story?

If you’re going to be working with CryENGINE 3 with other people

1. Make sure you’re all on the same team working on the same project. You can assign team members and set them working on a particular project over at CryDev.Net

2. Terrain and Vegetation is stored in the cry file NOT on layers. So whoever is doing your landscape/level design will have to give out their .Cry file. Make sure it is saved to be associated with the project you’re working on or to Global Share if you don’t have a project.

3. Since everything else is on layers, use layers for everything else. If you have an environment artist placing brushes, another person doing cinematics and another person doing flowgraph logic. Have them all use external layers (set as external in the layer properties).

4. Share using source control and import the stuff your team members make. Dropbox works but might mess things up 😐 Given how CryENGINE like the Unreal Dev Kit as well as Maya and 3DS Max like to crash from time to time, you’re better off not taking anything else along with it when it croaks. That and source control like SVN will allow you to roll back to a previous working version that does work.

Just my $0.02 that I hope others will find useful. Althouh CryENGINE3 has it’s quirks it’s by far the best engine I’ve ever worked with (sorry Unity and UDK)


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