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Old 07-19-2019, 01:57 AM   #76
agathosdaimon
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wow this looks really impressive.



i dont know if this is possible but would you be able to have the water notshow ship reflections like shown in the picture - perhaps its a limitation of the technology but ships simply do not have such perfect reflections in ocean water - the killerfish games look great too but also make this error , i always find such reflections make the ocean look still and shallow and like its all just in a big bath tub


if you cant do anything about it, thats fine, its just a detail i notice in games featuring oceans


your project nevetheless looks outstanding and i would buy it for sure!
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Old 07-23-2019, 06:33 PM   #77
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Hello again!

Well, this update will be a bit different than the norm - there won't be a vehicle highlight in the usual format but two new vehicles will get some spotlight, though both still have WIP elements that make them not quite ready for the full highlight.

First, I want to reply to "agathosdaimon"'s comment on the water - it is indeed very possible to ignore ship reflections but not sky reflections, and I see what you're talking about, comparing to real photos of ships on the ocean.

There's some give and take, though, given that ships do have a visible reflection effect when closer, and especially on smoother seas, but here's two pictures to show with and without:





...and yes, that is a Spruance. One of the two platforms I mentioned that are going to show up today but aren't quite ready for a highlight.

Anyways, the lack of reflection makes the ship seem a bit more detached from the water, but it does avoid the unrealistically clear reflections in the distance.

I think I know why this is happening, but it probably won't be very simple to solve. Other things are more pressing, but I'm glad you pointed this out - this is the exact sort of thing I like to get feedback on.

If this isn't solved by early access it might be a good option to leave, nevermind for graphical/performance reasons as well.

Anyways, one of the big things done this last week is ship waypoint navigation. Perhaps some of you noticed the two new buttons on the helm UI.


(this won't be the final icon for waypoints, but the triangles work well as a placeholder)

The two buttons do two unique functions: on the left with the steering wheel is the "auto-steer". With that on, the ship will turn the rudder to change course to the ordered course. If you take manual control of the rudder, it turns off to allow you to take control. You click the button to turn it back on.

The other button is the "auto-navigate". With that turned on, "ordered course" will automatically change to whatever the current bearing to the next waypoint is. You can also click the numbers in the "ordered course" box to change the ordered course directly - a mechanic that will be familiar to a lot of simmers out there - and that will turn off the auto-navigate. Again you can resume following waypoints just by clicking the button.

The end result is, with both on, the ship moves along its waypoints. With both off, you take manual control, without effecting the waypoints.

You can even leave the auto-navigate off to order a new heading without effecting your waypoints. Just turn it back on to return to following them. There's some other quality of life features to those buttons I hope to implement soon with regards to formations, but that's my solution to a robust and intuitive navigation system.

I hope I haven't made it sound too complicated... But it's my solution to the frustration often encountered in naval sims when you set up some waypoints, then need to break from them only temporarily, and have to set them all up again after.

Anyways, onto our new NATO helicopter!





Fresh out of the hanger, this is the SH-2F Seasprite. It plays the same role as the KA-25 "Hormone", with the exact same types of sensors on-board; a surface search radar, sonobouys, dipping sonar, and Magnetic Anomaly Detector (MAD). The MAD is the yellow-and-red striped object hanging from a pylon on the right side of the fuselage in the picture above.





Its armaments were also similar to the KA-25 Hormone, being able to carry two ASW torpedoes (in this case the Mk. 46 or Mk. 50) or two small air-to-surface missiles (AGM-65 Mavericks).

With a maximum and cruise speed of 143/130 knots to the Hormone's 113/104, it was fairly faster. Sources also cite 367 nmi compared to the Hormone's 216 nmi - but that's with two external tanks, which seem to occupy the same pylons that weapons would occupy. So it's hard to ascertain its actual combat range and endurance carrying two weapons, but it's probably very similar, if not a bit less.





Thanks for joining us, see you next week - or maybe sooner: As always, feel free to leave comments and feedback below.
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Old 07-23-2019, 07:08 PM   #78
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It looks really nice! Do you have any sort of development map, by the way, as in a plan for what units to develop first, or are you not ready to reveal that? Either way, great work so far!
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Old 07-23-2019, 07:27 PM   #79
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Quote:
Originally Posted by longface View Post
It looks really nice! Do you have any sort of development map, by the way, as in a plan for what units to develop first, or are you not ready to reveal that? Either way, great work so far!
I do, but I'm already revealing far more than most developers would probably tell me it's savvy to reveal. Stay tuned for updates, though.
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Old 07-24-2019, 02:53 AM   #80
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AzureSkies View Post
The control panel shows different throttle settings such as 1/3, 2/3, Stnd, Full, and Flank. Will the player be able to issue specific speed commands like 17kts?

Naval War Arctic Circle only allowed ships to have generic throttle settings. There was no way to order all ships to move at the same speed. Giving a group of different ships the 'cruise speed' command meant they got scattered, since each ship had a different setting for cruise speed. It was a ridiculous situation, IMHO.

Your description of the 'auto-steer' function seems much more reasonable than the manual micro-management hell required by Cold waters; where the player literally had to play the role of dive officer and helmsman in order to conduct course and depth corrections.
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Old 07-24-2019, 09:39 AM   #81
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Herman View Post
The control panel shows different throttle settings such as 1/3, 2/3, Stnd, Full, and Flank. Will the player be able to issue specific speed commands like 17kts?

Naval War Arctic Circle only allowed ships to have generic throttle settings. There was no way to order all ships to move at the same speed. Giving a group of different ships the 'cruise speed' command meant they got scattered, since each ship had a different setting for cruise speed. It was a ridiculous situation, IMHO.

Your description of the 'auto-steer' function seems much more reasonable than the manual micro-management hell required by Cold waters; where the player literally had to play the role of dive officer and helmsman in order to conduct course and depth corrections.
Notice the + and - buttons on either side of the ordered settings. Those allow you to order a speed to the knot.

As for formations, that's always rather annoying when a game doesn't handle those well. I'm thinking of making them like waypoints in some way.

And to be fair, in Cold Waters you could order depth to the nearest 50 feet and order a course. No waypoints, though.
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Old 07-24-2019, 12:40 PM   #82
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Originally Posted by AzureSkies View Post
Notice the + and - buttons on either side of the ordered settings. Those allow you to order a speed to the knot.
Will the player also be able to click on one of the three 'Ordered' boxes and enter a specific value directly? Requiring a player to first click one of the speed buttons before making adjustments with more mouse clicks on '+/-' seems a bit much.

Even better would be to have 3 hotkeys that would call up data entry windows to allow the user to set a course/speed/depth without the need to constantly drag the mouse pointer back and forth around the map/interface just to click on a little box.

Quote:
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And to be fair, in Cold Waters you could order depth to the nearest 50 feet and order a course. No waypoints, though.
Was that capability added after the initial release? I remember taking forever and bobbing and swinging like a yo-yo while trying to hit a specific depth because I had to be painfully aware of the depth planes and rudder, instead of simply saying to the (imaginary) helmsman/depth officer, "Bring us to course 217 at 150 ft depth."
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Old 07-24-2019, 01:33 PM   #83
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Actually that capability was in one of the very early builds back in late 2015, but at some point during development the entire sailing model was thrown out and rewritten.
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Old 07-26-2019, 07:55 AM   #84
agathosdaimon
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thanks for your reply to me quite minor request - its just a cosmetic thing, but it can help the immersion nevertheless


rather than reflections on deep ocean water, in order for ships to look like they a there, then just shadows are needed (relative to the strength of the light from the sun etc)


how world of warships does it, is the best i have seen from games, but also Atlantic Fleet mobile version - the mobile version is better than the pc version in this regards


its not the case that a ship will have no reflections all the time, but when it does it is a much more diffuse and partial and darker reflection the deeper and more in motion the sea state is
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Old 07-26-2019, 02:11 PM   #85
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Well the way planar reflections of this kind usually work is kind of a hack - you create a reflection camera, flip the image upside down and render it to a projected texture and you then use the surface normals to distort it. To get the proper effect you'd have to raytrace the reflections in realtime which seems prohibitively expensive. Pretty sure that World of Warships doesn't have realtime reflections, just a static cubemap which they can get away with because their environments are static.
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Old 07-27-2019, 03:05 AM   #86
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thanks for that insight, though i am not au fait with games development techniques - i understood most of what you said but just at the end regarding what Warships may do -what do you mean by static environment and what is a static cubemap? - if this is some "hack" then do you mean that it is an easy way to go about it, or that it is really only something the world of warships environment could do?


ultimately i think that all such reflections could just be omited altogether and just have shadows still - unless the ships are going to be sitting it dead still water, reflections are not needed


but again this is no big deal really, secondary to the main development work.



one could though put together a real rogues gallery of attempts in games to depict the ocean - all the work that can go into games like Naval Action and cold waters and still the ocean looks like abig glass mirror floating in a vacuum
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Old 07-27-2019, 06:29 AM   #87
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World of Warships uses photo-sourced panorama textures for its skies, which means the sky never changes as time or location changes in the game. So what they do then is use the same panorama texture for environment reflections, which is very fast as all you have to do is sample a 6-sided cubemap. I used the same technique when I did the water in Atlantic Fleet. The thing about reflections and why everybody makes their oceans very reflective simply boils down to 'because it looks better'.
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Old 07-28-2019, 05:23 AM   #88
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ah thanks - well that explains alot, - i think at least though what has been done in Atlantic Fleet and Cold Waters is i think probably among the best that can be achieved so far, - it would be needless to put more work and demand into something such as the reflections, - i think i play Atlantic fleet on my phone every day and my phone is just some cheap supermarket nokia, but Atlantic Fleet looks and plays excellent on it - so i wouldnt want to have something like ocean reflections make it too demanding on a system.
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Old 07-28-2019, 12:33 PM   #89
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Quote:
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Actually that capability was in one of the very early builds back in late 2015, but at some point during development the entire sailing model was thrown out and rewritten.
Holy cow, talk about 'throwing the baby out with the bathwater'!

Such a shame, at least there are several valuable lessons to be learned from this episode.
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Old 07-30-2019, 08:01 PM   #90
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This week's update is being postponed one day - so until tomorrow. Apologies for that. Will try to make it worth the wait.
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