Tuesday, 19 November 2013

Tuesday In QUAD World

Some More Nice Performances

The star if the show this evening was my friends the QUADs. These little pair of pesky polygons helped me fill the gap caused when the LOW LOD models disappeared from the scene to save render drain. They look much like the LOW LODs but are entirely flat. They are also so far away you don't really notice they are flat, or much care, when your attention is on the foreground. Here is my horrid little prototype, with visuals only a mother could love.

As an antidote to two developer shots in two days, Rolfy comes to the rescue (once more) with THREE new skies for Reloaded. Amazingly, he gifted them to us completely free to be used for the Reloaded product, and the moon one is my new favorite!  One day I hope to add the technology to make our moon (and sun) round ;)

I could go into the amazing levels of brain numbing detail, but it's 3AM and my pizza is in the oven, so this will be brief.  The new QUAD buffer work completes the polygon fill for the screen and all that remains (all he says!) is to orient the quads to always face the camera and to render the contents of the quad with the correct little texture to fool the user into thinking it is still the LOW LOD model you are looking at.

I was going to fake it with seven angled shots of each texture, but the more I think about the cleverness of the Dark Imposter (not Dark Occlusion - which is also pretty clever), the more I am keen to at least TRY to see if I can get each quad to have an accurate representation of the original model.  So what if it takes 100MB of texture memory, hits the performance for a few FPS, the finished render will be gorgeous, with almost polygon perfect accuracy across a vista stretching over a mile wide.  I must keep reminding myself to constantly aim HIGH!

Signing Off

A few more minutes before I burn my pizza.  Wednesday I will finish the last two QUAD tasks then see if I can integrate the lot into the engine to see where we are. I am not too precious on this point and won't leave the prototype until it does everything I need it to do, and I have a meeting on Thursday to show my wares.  I was hoping to show the final software with a huge speed increase, but given the complexity of what I've had to go through, I am now very happy if it's a complete and competent prototype that gets demonstrated.  I can smell, burning, so time to sign off :)


  1. I have got to say thanks to Rolfy,thats a cool looking sky.Sounds like your getting on well with the speeding up work Lee,bettrt have something good to show at the meeting or it will be hand slaping time.

  2. Yes a big thanks to rolfy. Good work on your skies. I always admire your work. Sb

  3. "So what if it takes 100MB of texture memory, hits the performance for a few FPS"

    Be careful Lee, every frame is precious in this product so far. If the difference is negligible on a anisotropic filtering type scale, then save those frames. We have to draw a line somewhere and distance objects is not something I feel we should be trying to get pixel perfect.

    1. I agree with Huknar. I don't think we're saying that you SHOULDN'T do it, necessarily, but just be careful, is all.