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PostPosted: Fri Aug 04, 2006 11:06 am 
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Quite Grand Sub-Admiral
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So discussion of this thing doesn't spread all over the board, please post comments, bug reports, etc in this thread. I'll also post notices of new exe uploads here, and links to work in progress screen shots.

If you're running it on *NIX of any flavour, please also use this thread to discuss your findings and ask questions.

I've been trying to come up with a different style of planet and have this Mars-like one going now. I think it looks pretty good.

I don't yet have a good way of deciding how to make planets Earth-like or Mars-like, and each of the algorithms I've tried on the 6-part pseudo-random seed value for the systems lays the two planet types out in bands across the galaxy. The guys who know the galaxy seeding algorithm well might have some ideas here.

Right now the only criteria for weeding an algorithm out is that Lave, Zaonce, and Tionisla should be Earth-likes. Well, at least Lave, as it has rainforests! Perhaps I could do an algorithm based on the description numbers and look for planets that must have trees or something.

For this new type of planet I think variations in colour will be easier... I'm going to try using HSL values to keep the general range of the colours the same, but give slightly different hues to each planet while maintaining a basic rock-like colour for all of them. Greys, browns, and yellows pretty much.

I'm also trying to find a way to make the poles of the Earth-like planets fade to white to represent ice and snow. I thought I knew how to do it in libnoise using a technique similar to how I get the cloud layer transparent, but it didn't work... more tinkering required here.

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PostPosted: Fri Aug 04, 2006 11:10 am 
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Master and Commander
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I don't yet have a good way of deciding how to make planets Earth-like or Mars-like, and each of the algorithms I've tried on the 6-part pseudo-random seed value for the systems lays the two planet types out in bands across the galaxy. The guys who know the galaxy seeding algorithm well might have some ideas here.
AFAICS you're just xor-ing the 6 values together, a better route would be to use one for the 'seed RNG from planet seed' routines then use a random number as the seed to the noise generators.

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PostPosted: Fri Aug 04, 2006 11:40 am 
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8) 'Mars' looks very nice...


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 04, 2006 11:44 am 
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Location: I escaped The Labyrinth with the assistance of my fledgling. After many battles, I'm in the Nexus.
Tried the new version. Even better with the Clouds. Like the mars idea!

I have no programing skill, but just an idea:

Perhaps to weed out planets, could you use the code that generates the planet descriptions in some way? Eg if the description included "plantations" or "forests" your code makes it very green, "mountains" your code add mountain ranges etc. Then the planet would match its description as well. Or use the description of the inhabitants. "Human colonists" would generate a earth-type planet, but "slimy frogs" could generate a very watery planet etc.

This would be really cool in making the Ooniverse more "realistic" as humans would colonise an earth type world and sentient frogs would need a lot of water!

Could I be very greedy and ask if it would be possible to do a similar thing with texturing the sun? Then we could have red-giants, g-type stars, white dwarfs etc and have moving sun-spots and plasma instead of clouds.

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Last edited by LittleBear on Fri Aug 04, 2006 11:18 pm, edited 4 times in total.

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PostPosted: Fri Aug 04, 2006 12:01 pm 
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This is an idea I put in the other thread but it's better off here:

Is there a way of having a gradient for the land mass and a block colour for liquid, and then maybe having a liquid height for the water (so for a dry planet have the water level at 0% and for a water planet have the level at 100%).

So for earth the land mass gradient could be green-brown say (or if you could have three colours in the gradient green-brown-white). The sea would be blue and set the sea level to about 70% maybe, to give big expanses of water with land contenients.

This way there would be a definate difference between land and sea.

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PostPosted: Fri Aug 04, 2006 12:18 pm 
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The "Mars" looks very good, indeed! Unfortunately, I don't have time to try the new exe out until after the weekend, but I'm dying to do so! :)

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PostPosted: Sat Aug 05, 2006 6:52 am 
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Quite Grand Sub-Admiral
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Quote:
Could I be very greedy and ask if it would be possible to do a similar thing with texturing the sun? Then we could have red-giants, g-type stars, white dwarfs etc and have moving sun-spots and plasma instead of clouds.
I think that would be cool too, but it's beyond my GFX abilities. I think the suns would need an "animated" texture to show their churning surface, plus some hazing and glowing and stuff. This is Giles/Ahruman territory.

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Last edited by dajt on Sat Aug 05, 2006 7:23 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Sat Aug 05, 2006 6:54 am 
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Quite Grand Sub-Admiral
Quite Grand Sub-Admiral

Joined: Tue Aug 17, 2004 7:05 am
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Location: Orange, NSW, Australia
Quote:
This is an idea I put in the other thread but it's better off here:

Is there a way of having a gradient for the land mass and a block colour for liquid, and then maybe having a liquid height for the water (so for a dry planet have the water level at 0% and for a water planet have the level at 100%).

So for earth the land mass gradient could be green-brown say (or if you could have three colours in the gradient green-brown-white). The sea would be blue and set the sea level to about 70% maybe, to give big expanses of water with land contenients.

This way there would be a definate difference between land and sea.
That is extactly the way it works now, aside from the block colour for the water. I don't think that would look as good as the seas would be dead flat with no variation in "blue" colour.

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David Taylor.


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PostPosted: Sat Aug 05, 2006 7:58 am 
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Mostly Harmless
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I downloaded the exe (I think) and had a go. First up - Great job! - I know you're doing this in your spare time because it's something you enjoy. Below are some suggestions I had on first look. (It's always easier to criticise!)

1) Can the resolution of the textures be increased? Now that you have decernable features on the planet's surface the textures look a bit naff when you leave the station. Great from a distance though.

2) Sea colour. You could probably vary the sea colour more from planet to planet - lighter or darker blue (Cyan to Black) - not every planet will have seas of pure water.

3) Land colour. The base rock of a planet might vary. You could also vary the underlying colour (like you were trying to do with the "rock" planets)

4) Plant colour. Our land plants are green (although some are a lot darker green than others). However our seaweeds are red below a certain depth because this best captures the filtered light. There may be more variation you could apply in the plant colour. (Although I'm not sure how good it would look)

5) Mix of properties. Again there's probably room for more variation on the amount of plant/land. I didn't see that much in a (breif) look. Some planets might be deserts with very few plants - whereas some might be completely forrested.

6) Cities. You could add areas of grey or brown that might represent cities. Again allowing for variation from none at all to some totally industrialised planets. - Of course you'd then have to add lights to the night side ;-)

7) ICE Planets. Some planets might be covered in ice - possibly colonised for mining?

8) Random seed. The planet's properties are surley the right way to go about this. As I recollect the BBC version of elite used one of the bits of the second to last letter of the planet name to determine how it was drawn - There's some milage in simiar techniques. You've also got the industrial/agricultural mix that might be used to make rocky/planty planets.

Hmm. This has turned into quite a list. Hope that some suggestions inspire ideas.

Chris.


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PostPosted: Sat Aug 05, 2006 11:56 am 
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Quite Grand Sub-Admiral
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I have started a change so you can specify the size of texture you want in planetinfo.plist, but it isn't working yet. It should be a simple change but something has gone wrong... I tried it with 1024x768 textures earlier today and the desert planet looked great. It didn't make that much difference for the earth-like one.

I like the idea of ice planets, but they might require more GFX nous than I have to get them shiny.

I have changed the way the seed is calcuated based on Giles' suggestion above. Not sure what the distribution of the two types of planet is like yet.

As for the other ideas - I don't disagree with any of them, but I can't see them happening any time soon either - particularly the cities. Nice idea, but too hard for me right now.

I have held off posting an exe with the desert planets until I get the texture size property problem sorted out.

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David Taylor.


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PostPosted: Sat Aug 05, 2006 12:10 pm 
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the pics shown so far have been impressively hot-looking. well done so far.

to throw something into the suggestion pot, how about having the very largest planets be gas giants?

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PostPosted: Sat Aug 05, 2006 12:11 pm 
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Dangerous Subversive Element
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Oo!

cities. they shine in the dark! :lol:
would like to see you tackly that one.
Prolly have to wait for gile's glow/bumpmepping experiments to pan out.
:D

Great stuff guys.

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PostPosted: Sat Aug 05, 2006 12:36 pm 
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I like the idea of ice planets, but they might require more GFX nous than I have to get them shiny.
Isn't there a value you can set which determines the reflectivity of a surface? In BlitzBASIC 3D, my standard devkit, there's an Entity Shininess command which does that.

I'm also dying to see the new build... alas, so little time... :(

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PostPosted: Sat Aug 05, 2006 1:55 pm 
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Quote:
Quote:
This is an idea I put in the other thread but it's better off here:

Is there a way of having a gradient for the land mass and a block colour for liquid, and then maybe having a liquid height for the water (so for a dry planet have the water level at 0% and for a water planet have the level at 100%).

So for earth the land mass gradient could be green-brown say (or if you could have three colours in the gradient green-brown-white). The sea would be blue and set the sea level to about 70% maybe, to give big expanses of water with land contenients.

This way there would be a definate difference between land and sea.
That is extactly the way it works now, aside from the block colour for the water. I don't think that would look as good as the seas would be dead flat with no variation in "blue" colour.
Yup, I said all that before downloading tp4. Must be more up to date before posting replies!!

I like the idea of being able to use our own textures in a planetinfo.plist

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PostPosted: Sat Aug 05, 2006 3:59 pm 
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Quote:
I have started a change so you can specify the size of texture you want in planetinfo.plist, but it isn't working yet. It should be a simple change but something has gone wrong... I tried it with 1024x768 textures earlier today and the desert planet looked great. It didn't make that much difference for the earth-like one.
1024x768? I’m assuming you meant 1024x512?

Have you considered detail textures? Just a bit of noise mapped over the main textures to hide the pixelation.
Quote:
cities. they shine in the dark!
Sensible positioning of the cities is probably the hardest bit there. (Incidentally, Giles mentioned implementing glow maps with shaders, but they can be done without.)

As for the sun, I think the current look is pretty good for the main disc. You can’t pick out sunspots on the sun. :-) (A more realistic corona is possible, though. And maybe full-screen bloom effects…)

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