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Build Your Own: Wall-Sized 3D Gaming, Just Like Theaters Do It

Benchmark Results: Left 4 Dead

Left 4 Dead simply has to be one of the test cases for a wall-sized stereo 3D experience. And I'm not talking about Left 4 Dead 2 (the sequel with its bright outdoor environments). I'm talking about the original, with its dark claustrophobic corridors and rainy nights. This game is very suitable for 3D play and brings the experience to life in a way that is hard to describe, but awesome to behold.

Game Settings:

We set the native projector resolution to 1280x720 and the game's visual details to the maximum possible settings with 4x MSAA enabled.

Game Experience Using the TriDef Ignition Driver:

Perfection, absolute perfection. This is the kind of smooth experience I expect from a technology on the brink of mass adoption. Everything in the game looks right: the environments, the characters, the hand-held weapons, and even the effects and names above the other players’ heads. Shooting a zombie results in gruesome splattering effects that you can actually see in three dimensions. The depth of the game is incredible.

With the Virtual 3D option enabled, the frame rate certainly increases, but the visual quality is noticeably lowered. For some reason, this setting seems to turn off AA. Otherwise, the 3D depth remains excellent and this would certainly be a viable option on slower video cards.

Game Experience Using the iZ3D Driver:

While the iZ3D driver does a good job creating the 3D effect, it displays some distracting anomalies that make the game difficult to play. Specifically, the other players' names shown on the HUD seem to be coming from different perspectives and aren’t aligned properly. While the driver shows a lot of potential in this title, we wouldn't want to actually play this game using the iZ3D driver.

Note the distracting inconsistency in the placement of the character names above their heads

Left 4 Dead 3D Stereo Performance:

As you can see from the benchmarks, the TriDef driver doesn’t seem to like the GeForce GTX 260 card. Since the iZ3D driver supplies some visual anomalies, this leaves us with a single playable scenario: the Radeon HD 4890 card paired with the TriDef driver. The 40 FPS performance in this case is smooth and enjoyable.