SOURCE 2 ENGINE
MORE RESPONSIVE INPUTOne of the ways Source 2 directly improves gameplay is by reducing the latency between issuing a command and seeing your hero react to that command. Our redesigned input system now allows the server to process mouse clicks and key presses directly into visible actions more quickly than before.
TILED MAP SYSTEMThe new authoring tools allow maps in Dota 2 to be built using a tile system, which makes authoring new maps faster and more accessible. This new system also allows new maps, like the Desert terrain, to have dramatically different visual styles, while ensuring that each variation has identical gameplay. Players with different custom terrains equipped will be able to play together, with each player seeing a different version of the map.
ENHANCED PERFORMANCESource 2 was built to support a wide range of hardware. Dota 2 in Source 2 runs better on older laptops, and at the same time further increases performance on current desktops. Though Dota 2 may not require all of the resources of a high end machine, Source 2 has been built to be capable of driving modern machines to their limits. It can use all of your CPU cores, your 64-bit OS and memory, and includes support for recent and upcoming graphics standards like Direct3D 11 and Vulkan as well as virtual reality if the game demands it. Performance will continue to improve during the beta as we optimize it for more PC configurations.
MULTITHREADING & STREAMINGSource 2 will use any available CPU cores to provide a smoother experience, removing many hitches during gameplay. Also, much of the game content can be streamed in the background while the game stays responsive. Animation, voice chat, music and more can continue while the game is loading.
IMPROVED AUDIOSource 2 uses a new audio system that processes all audio in full quality through the entire pipeline. Voice chat makes use of this improvement, and is now noticeably higher quality and has less latency than before. Audio and voice processing also use multi-threading to run in the background and avoid dropouts. The Source 2 audio system also makes use of your processor's SIMD instruction sets to improve performance. Additionally, it offers new audio scripting capabilities for audio designers which lets them customize the mix and effects pipeline without changing any code. This capability is also supported in Custom Games.
RENDERINGThe renderer in Source 2 contains a number of new features and improvements, giving creators more design freedom. It removes many of the constraints on building the world of Dota 2, allowing map designers to create worlds that were not possible to build in the previous engine. Maps in Source 2 can be authored using powerful geometry editing tools and may contain complex meshes which are free of convexity constraints. The engine is capable of delivering many more batches to the GPU, even when using older versions of the OpenGL and Direct3D graphics APIs. This makes it easier to create more detailed worlds and more advanced characters. Additionally, a unified lighting system ensures all game assets have access to the same rendering feature set, ensuring visual continuity. So far Dota 2 is only using a few of the new rendering features in Source 2, including normal mapping on all types of geometry and multiple reflective water planes in the same scene.
PHYSICSSource 2 also includes new versions of our physics and cloth simulation engines which implement higher quality, more stable simulations. In the future, more advanced Source 2 cloth and physics simulation technology will be used to power Dota 2 Custom Games content.
MULTIPLATFORMSource 2 includes native support for OpenGL without needing a wrapper, improving performance, memory usage and loading times on other platforms. We're still putting the finishing touches on the Mac and Linux clients and we hope to have them available in the coming weeks.