Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
Raap

Uncategorized

Recommended Posts

Looks amazing! The American cactus might not be appropriate for APB (no major combat took place in North or South America during RA1), but this would be absolutely perfect for Reborn or AR, and should definitely be included in those games! :dance: 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Looks great Raap! Can't wait to see what the finished product will be.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's still missing a few more assets but I figured I'd show the work in progress. 

It is already getting difficult to work on the environment, 3DS is tanking hard in performance. I've had to drop bitmap lookup down to the lowest setting or else 3DS Max simply crashes on loading the scene... Even though so far it is just one part of the environment and not even containing all assets yet. The problem comes from the fact I'm utilizing 4k resolution textures on most things, and 2k resolutions on smaller props. Also every asset is completely new and NOT just re-used assets, I've had a heavy hand in every single asset and completely re-textured everything.

On the flip side, client performance in W3D, even without VIS, is smooth. This experiment shows that W3D projects could easily upgrade their texture resolutions for environments. Speaking textures, here is an older screenshot from before props were added, I've done a lot of work combating texture tiling appearances... I'll spare the technical details: bXzU7Mt.jpg

As it stands there is no determined objective with this environment. There are no game-specific objects or gameplay (It is however tested on the APB client as it is the only up to date public W3D Hub client).

Edit: By the way, as you can see, W3D vertex lightsolve is a blight on the scene. I'd consider a lightmap, but those also are not pretty. I've not seen a good exterior environment lightmap implementation demonstrated on W3D, I'd like to be proven wrong here. A lightmap would also require 3-pass materials on every mesh, and I don't think people's computers look forward to that.

Edited by Raap

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I currently live in Arizona and wow you got the cactus right. They always grow vertically no matter what slope they are on and some have no arms and some have multiple arms.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
27 minutes ago, Raptor29aa said:

I currently live in Arizona and wow you got the cactus right. They always grow vertically no matter what slope they are on and some have no arms and some have multiple arms.

You might notice one of them is at a significant angle by mistake. :p

The rest is at a maximum angle of ±2+2 for aesthetic reasons; it breaks up the amount of vertical lines in the screen space.

Edited by Raap

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
17 hours ago, Ice said:

Looks amazing! The American cactus might not be appropriate for APB (no major combat took place in North or South America during RA1), but this would be absolutely perfect for Reborn or AR, and should definitely be included in those games! :dance: 

Would we really fault Raap for that though? Can't we just say a Soviet detachment invaded the American Southwest and General Carville has been tasked with defending the Allied base in the region?

I'm really liking where this is going, Raap. Keep it up!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Heh, if I wanted to push this into APB there isn't much there story-wise that could prevent that. We have a moon map, a map not in this plane of reality, a map with ants, a map with weird medieval cannons, and a map with a base constructed on floating icebergs. And somehow we tell ourselves I tell myself this makes sense! (Probably because I made 50% of these weirdest APB locales...)

Edit: But to say it again, I have no final destination with this.

 

Edited by Raap

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 hours ago, Raptor29aa said:

I currently live in Arizona and wow you got the cactus right. They always grow vertically no matter what slope they are on and some have no arms and some have multiple arms.

AFAIK most trees grow vertically like this too IRL.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
59 minutes ago, Raap said:

Heh, if I wanted to push this into APB there isn't much there story-wise that could prevent that. We have a moon map, a map not in this plane of reality, a map with ants, a map with weird medieval cannons, and a map with a base constructed on floating icebergs. And somehow we tell ourselves I tell myself this makes sense! (Probably because I made 50% of these weirdest APB locales...)

Edit: But to say it again, I have no final destination with this.

To be fair, the ants are explicitly a part of RA, and iceberg bases aren't terribly far-fetched, while the moon map hasn't been in the server rotation in quite a while now. The medieval cannons, despite their exaggerated size, have at least some basis in reality, while the "alternate reality" map is essentially a parody map for the lolz (and AFAIK is also not in the current rotation).

That all being said, to me the screenshots look like they could be straight out of AR or Reborn, and the props shown would be perfect additions to several of their maps:dance:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Some really solid work there, Raap. Looking forward to seeing more!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
7 hours ago, Ice said:

To be fair, the ants are explicitly a part of RA, and iceberg bases aren't terribly far-fetched, while the moon map hasn't been in the server rotation in quite a while now. The medieval cannons, despite their exaggerated size, have at least some basis in reality, while the "alternate reality" map is essentially a parody map for the lolz (and AFAIK is also not in the current rotation).

That all being said, to me the screenshots look like they could be straight out of AR or Reborn, and the props shown would be perfect additions to several of their maps:dance:

Well, as we all know, all deserts have cacti...

In all seriousness, though, this looks great! I'm excited to see where it goes!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'd like to point out that there are subtle differences between an arid environment and a semi-arid environment. The intend with this particular scene is to border towards semi-arid, mainly to support plants and a few spots of green to break the otherwise monotone of a hot and dry true arid environment (or also known as a desert).

I was forced to take a break yesterday but I hope to continue working on this. I did encounter an oversight with one of the assets - the larger rock pile - in where I incidentally applied alpha blend in regions where plane UVW causes stretching, so I'm going to have to pull that out, update it, and re-populate it in the scene, a manual process. You might wonder, what's the big deal about a bad alpha blend? Well, know that I am utilizing hand-painted application through vertex painting, so all assets look like these when viewed individually in 3DS: 

assetblend.thumb.png.2f0e8b5f4bf6110cd7dc90f7b8522c8e.png

I no longer work with box UVW (unless the target mesh is literally a box-type object!) due to the seams it creates. The grey cliffs that are part of the main terrain for example use a separate UV channel on the main cliff mesh and the two adjacent transition meshes to create a smooth texture flow with no edges. Pushwall uses similar methods in some APB levels.

Edit: Solved this already by just re-painting the merged mesh collection within the main scene, herpaderp.

Edited by Raap

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
7 hours ago, Raap said:

 

assetblend.thumb.png.2f0e8b5f4bf6110cd7dc90f7b8522c8e.png

I'd personally love to see how cliffs built entirely from objects like this would look in W3D, as opposed to the smooth-style hills that appear in most maps.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
41 minutes ago, OWA said:

I'd personally love to see how cliffs built entirely from objects like this would look in W3D, as opposed to the smooth-style hills that appear in most maps.

I'm partially attempting this, but what prevents a full object-mesh cliff isn't polygon counts, it isn't client performance. It is that vertex light solve makes them incredibly ugly to behold. Just look at my initial three screenshots, the light solve is a blight on the scene, creating black smudges for "shadows".

I would love a new lighting model for W3D. I'd touch people to see it happen. Touch. People.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
9 hours ago, Raap said:

I'm partially attempting this, but what prevents a full object-mesh cliff isn't polygon counts, it isn't client performance. It is that vertex light solve makes them incredibly ugly to behold. Just look at my initial three screenshots, the light solve is a blight on the scene, creating black smudges for "shadows".

I would love a new lighting model for W3D. I'd touch people to see it happen. Touch. People.

I'd even pay someone to finally do it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
12 hours ago, Raap said:

I'm partially attempting this, but what prevents a full object-mesh cliff isn't polygon counts, it isn't client performance. It is that vertex light solve makes them incredibly ugly to behold. Just look at my initial three screenshots, the light solve is a blight on the scene, creating black smudges for "shadows".

I would love a new lighting model for W3D. I'd touch people to see it happen. Touch. People.

Well, I suppose if you found a desperate but intelligent and brilliant female programmer... I could see the touch part working... maybe. But even if you found one you'd have to scare off the army of her male coworkers/possible jealous busy bodies.

Much easier to go to a university, find a teacher's assistant, bribe them with a little money (they don't get paid anything real so this part may not be that difficult), and have them make the coding project an extra credit class assignment... done. And no nerds get harmed or women wooed, yet the bribe would cost you.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Raptor29aa said:

Well, I suppose if you found a desperate but intelligent and brilliant female programmer... I could see the touch part working... maybe. But even if you found one you'd have to scare off the army of her male coworkers/possible jealous busy bodies.

Much easier to go to a university, find a teacher's assistant, bribe them with a little money (they don't get paid anything real so this part may not be that difficult), and have them make the coding project an extra credit class assignment... done. And no nerds get harmed or women wooed, yet the bribe would cost you.

You're so weird, man. I like it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
7 hours ago, moonsense715 said:

I'd even pay someone to finally do it.

Ooh, yeah, we could do that, too.

Somehow I don't think the student theory would work out though!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have explored the possibilities of setting up a new W3D project using a non-existing intellectual property and using my own designs (everything has been documented).

Unfortunately some of the things I need, while achievable within the W3D Engine, requires extensive C++ commitments and I personally do not have the required skillset. I had hoped that I would have been able to rapidly deploy a prototype from which I could then appeal to programmers outside the W3D Hub community to work with me on this project, but even just getting to that basic stage requires resources I do not have. The roadblocks I encountered on W3D have to do with the HUD and inventory logic, which have to be partially redone to support my needs for even just a basic 'prototype'.

I'm currently letting things cook a little while I explore alternative options, but should the W3D effort be concluded completely, then the assets I've shown so far - plus a truckload more - will be gifted to W3D Hub as-is for projects to do with as they see fit.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Those rocks look amazing! Imagine how maps like Pipeline or most TSR maps could be enhanced by stuff like this. Really looking forward to seeing how this turns out.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The rocks are somewhat experimental in terms of textures. I'm using fine detail on the flat surfaces while making the edges slightly blurred and lighter in colour. It makes them look better from a distance, but if you put your face into those edges you do see the lowered detail. 

Modern engines use texture scaling methods in their materials for this, but I am 'faking' it by applying details to where it makes most sense. The catch? This method can only reliably be done using 4k or above texture resolutions.

Edit: I may be publishing my design documentation in human-readable form in an effort to fish for a short term software development partner that could at the very least help me realize a prototype. I'm a bit careful when it comes to sharing my concepts openly, the last thing I want to do is undersell it due to oversights. Also, because it is a wall of text it wouldn't be appealing to the average person to read.

But to assure you guys, the kind of game I've been wanting to make is a game that does not yet exist. I takes notable inspirations from several genres but the total package is, as far as I am aware, never been done before.

Edited by Raap

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Slight bump/update, due to my original idea of a new game being frozen until I can find a C++ programmer with experience in user interfaces and gameplay logic, the initially previewed desert demonstration level will be converted into a non-core gameplay APB level.

It's the best I can do in the short-ish term, and it will give W3D a level to chew on that utilizes mostly 4096x4096 textures in the materials, for graphical performance testing purposes.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I appear to have a faulty definition of "short term".

Anyhow, development of making this into an APB map hit a bit of a, how to put it, creative roadblock? Not for a shortage of ideas (I'm never out of ideas), but rather which format to settle on and which would be most enjoyable. It's probably going to have to become an iterative process, a testbed of sorts. So when I finally present this side project to Pushwall, I expect to be a little more hands-on afterwards rather than 'submit the level and run the hell away' as it were with Hostile Waters and Siege.

So uhm, hooray for updates? Yeah. Side note, this map might wreck your computer if you use a potato, not sure, maybe, it depends on... things.

Edit: Oh yeah, and the level is using Siege-style environment lighting now. I do not want to use it but until Vertex Solve is abandoned I just cannot deal with the blocky smudges that are supposed to be shadows. The reason you do not see these on Siege is because the weather is nasty and the sunlight intensity is low. I may experiment with some out-of-editor tweaking to get a decent desert-y look but it will be a challenge. As always, no ETA, this isn't the only thing I got to work on atm.

Edited by Raap

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Right, so, in terms of lighting I sort of had to settle on this:

weZkm6x.jpg

Please be aware that I hope to add the missing color vibrancy in some out-of-editor tweaking. As it is, I am not a fan of it, but this is needed to reduce the vertex solve mess.

Edited by Raap

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Last public update on the topic of scene light. This last one took a bit more time than expected... AFAIK this is a first for APB; Unique skydome settings.

It doesn't quite fix the lighting issue but at least it brings SOME colour back into the scene.

sky.thumb.png.1d32b414eb2de24f03214aa57f12c39e.png

 

@jonwil would it be possible to hook these ini file configurations into the commando editor? I wasted a LOT of time going back and forth, re-exporting every change, because these settings do not export correctly with the 'run game' option. Further more, because it is an ini file, it also means I have to include a somewhat clumsy dependencies preset.

Edited by Raap

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I just added a feature to Mammoth so it will read these per-map sky settings. The old Westwood editor is going away in the near future since Mammoth is nearly feature complete (the main remaining thing on the to-do list is fixing all the bugs in our reverse engineered clone of the vis generation algorithm) and definitely couldn't have this stuff added in any case.

When you change the ini you will just need to reload the map and it will read your changed sky colors.

As for the dependencies, Mammoth makes it trivial to add the ini file as a dependency of the map (that will get automatically exported into the map mix file). The dependency information is then stored in the .lvl file and travels with that.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...