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Some more architecture



I think these have been on the SimHQ forums for a couple of days but I've been too busy to post any updates. Here AD has been adding some gardens to the Friday Mosque and adding it to the city.

To overcome scale/zbuffer issues of having a large scene, AD has buried the the tiled gardens into the terrain, just like the river sections. The gardens sit on a large slab that is quite deep, this also accommodates uneven terrain.





No paved road surface currently. While Leadwerks supports roads that are baked into terrain geometry they are not efficient for our large scale map. One of the reasons we're looking to build our own terrain streaming system after Combat-Helo is released. We might be able to squeeze in another texture layer to splat a paved surface in.





A high altitude view of the city shows the west side is still waiting to be populated. This was the area most damaged during a previous regional conflict.4946580266235927217-4434638026351066140?l=combathelo.blogspot.com




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Can't wait to fly above it.
And I know this isn't the game at all but... I can't wait to run among it. I hope you include a secret or something that lets you do that.
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You can indeed land anywhere and take a walk as I often do, really makes me wish for a procedural grass feature.


We built the helicopters so you can run around and jump in and out. The act of boarding a helicopter creates an detailed instance of it on the client. The client loads the avionics and cockpit for that vehicle which is dumped when you exit the vehicle. Player controlled vehicles (just one kind of helicopter is supported atm) retains a 'state' that is persistent between players and sent over the network. There's also a mini-state used to sync the same vehicle between players in the same helicopter.


This system enables us to add a detailed CH-47 Chinook later without much extra code other than the avionics code for the cockpit instrumentation. Flight model is data driven.


Going for a walk is as simple as finding a nice spot to land and popping the canopy to exit. Could add controls for ground vehicles too but the focus is very much on low level or NOE (nap of the earth) flight. Only the player bases will have detail enough for FPS levels of detail and even that is functional. But more than most combat sim products.


All this map data, veg, models, textures has to be loaded in one go. So we have learned to make good use of single materials, optimised everything for the rendering pipeline. Compounds originally we made from discrete walls as sub objects, too much memory, we reduced all objects into one single object where possible, much faster. Didn't loose anything.


There will be some civilian traffic following routes along the roads, eventually. It's feature number nine-hundred and ninety nine on the list, well pretty low down. If it can be done without much impact it will stay in the game.


Traffic will be fun to do, there's many ways you can go about it. But it needs to sync across clients and any vehicle might be destroyed through player action. That imposes some constraints. I had in mind a simple array of vehicle type and distance, like toy cars on a length of string. And simply winding the string around roads and pulling all the cars along. Array positions can be crafted so they don't intersect oddly when it crosses another at intersection.


Open to ideas on this. Has to be as cheap in terms of CPU time.

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