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Children of the Nile info

Technical info

Those of you who are highly interested in the technical details of Children of the Nile (like the engine and other technologies used), or want to know what hardware you need for running the game, can find quotes related to the technical aspect of Children of the Nile here.

System Requirements


  • Pentium® III or Athlon® 800 MHz processor or higher
  • Windows® 98/2000/ME/XP operating system
  • 128 MB of RAM (256 MB required for Windows® XP)
  • 1.1 GB of uncompressed hard drive space
  • A 100% Windows® 98/2000/ME/XP-compatible computer system including:
    • DirectX® 9.0b
    • 100% DirectX® 9-compliant true 16 bit sound card and drivers
    • 100% DirectX® 9-compliant 32 MB video card and drivers
  • 100% Windows® 98/2000/ME/XP -compatible mouse and drivers
  • 100% Windows® 98/2000/ME/XP -compatible keyboard
  • 100% Windows® 98/2000/ME/XP -compatible quad speed (600 K/sec sustained transfer rate) CD-ROM drive and drivers


  • Pentium® 4 or Athlon® 2.0 GHz processor
  • 512 MB of RAM
  • 64 MB video card will full Direct 9.0 support


Screen resolutions

Friday, September 03, 2004

On the question what screen resolutions Children of the Nile will support, jfreyholtz answered:

Currently 640x480 to 1600x1200, though that's not to say that the final product could be different..


Graphics engine

Sunday, July 11, 2004

From the HomeLAN Fed interview with Chris Beatrice:


What can you tell us about the graphics engine and its features for Children of the Nile?

Chris Beatrice

As you know we licensed from Stainless Steel Studios the same 3d engine that they used to create Empire Earth. One of the aspects of the engine that appealed to us was the low specs required to play, which is very important for us, particularly in Europe. We have kept the minimum system specs very low, requiring only Hardware Transform & Lighting available on G-Force & Radeon cards from yr 2000 (DX7).

On the other side we have modified the engine quite a lot to suit our needs and to take advantage of features offered in DX9. We believe we have the first flowing water model in which current flow adapts to the terrain as the Nile floods and recedes. Particle effects, procedural sky, shadows, pixel shader effects on the water, are just a few of the graphic fx in our current build.

To us it is never about the technology itself, but the gameplay impact we can make. For example it was very important to us that you could zoom out far above the city and then zoom all the way down to first person and walk the streets. Any additional detail that a machine can support is just one more thing that helps make the environment more believable taking you deeper on your journey back in time.


Video Card requirements

Monday, May 03, 2004

Tony Leier at the Tilted Mill forums about the video card requirements:

Well, the minimum is a video card with Hardware T&L (Dx 8), which is any GeForce or Radeon card. Those have been around for 5 or 6 years now I think. The recommended is cards that have DirectX 9 functions (the latest cards, like the Geforce FX or Radeon 9800), so you can see the cool bump mapping and pixel shading those cards support. The newer cards are also faster and have more memory RAM, so you'll get overall better performance just like if you have a faster CPU.

So, that's what you gain. What do I suggest? I've played on a Radeon 7500, a Geforce4, and a Radeon 9600. All of them looked good and worked fine. The Radeon 9600 (a Dx9 card) does look better I admit, not unexpected since it is twice as good as the other cards.

If you're buying a new card, I'd go one of two ways:

  1. Get a Geforce4 or Radeon 9000 or so. Those are the not-quite-latest version and so have great price points for their capabilities. The disadvantage is they don't have the full Dx9 feature set.
  2. Get the latest GeforceFX or Radeon 9600/9800 (or whatever their number is.) This card will cost you more, but will have longer legs, and has the latest feature sets.


Technology used (2)

Saturday, March 20, 2004

From the GameSpy Interview:


What technology are you using to build it? Original engine or a licensed one?

Chris Beatrice:

We licensed the Empire Earth engine about two years ago, and we've transformed it quite a bit. In all the projects I've done, I've always strived to have a working version of the game as early as possible, however rudimentary the gameplay might be. It's hard to overstate what a benefit that is to the team, even before we start showing the game to people outside the studio. Though all my designers have no problem understanding and visualizing what the gameplay will be like, it's often very difficult for the entire team to grasp that when they're not part of our marathon design sessions. But if they can run the game and get a sense of what types of things the player will do, then it's like "oh, I get it."

Since we left Sierra with nothing but the shirts on our backs, we needed to get something going fast. There really wasn't any technology out there that matched what we intended to do with our game - what we really needed was a solid foundation on which to build something new. The Empire Earth engine gave us a lot more than we had hoped for, frankly. It was and is remarkably stable, robust, and flexible and really within a couple of weeks we had something that looked good and worked really well. It resembled the game we were ultimately going to make a lot, and got us fired up. Though we've really taken the technology in a very different direction from its roots, it was certainly, without question instrumental in getting us started.


Technology used

From the official Children of the Nile FAQ:

What type of technology does CotN employ?

We licensed the engine used for best-seller Empire Earth, from Stainless Steel Studios. There really isn't any existing technology out there that closely matches what is needed for this game, but this engine has provided a solid foundation on which to build something new. It was initially developed several years ago, to perform well on a wide range of systems, so, despite our additions and enhancements it still performs remarkably well, which is crucial for the city building audience.


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