Performance Gives Way
A strange mixed bag of a day, with some phone calls, email chasing, an interview and quite a few non-performance tweaks in the latest build. I also had a few static entity bridges lying around that I added to the library too.
Not my best shot in the world, but not bad for only a few minutes of messing about while working on the physics stuff. The latest build now fixes the strange physics issue with dynamic objects sinking into the floor due to an error in how the physical rotations where applied to the visual objects for rendering. I also changed the way Reloaded understands the 'collisionmode' flag in the FPE to increase the change that legacy artwork can load into the editor with full polygon collision in tact (so you can go into buildings designed to do that).
The downside to activating polygon collision on static entities is that they are insanely hungry for performance. We are not yet at the stage where we can happily throw thousands of polygons at the player and expect him to jump. For a single core CPU solution we still need to watch what polygons we move close to the player and dynamic objects, and if possible, to use rotated boxes. I intend to write a simple 'physics editor' which can produce a composite of boxes to represent an entity and then use that in place of a complex polygon soup which is not only bad for speed but also confusing for a physics system which has to solve it 60 frames per second. I can turn a bridge piece which contains over 200 collision polygons and produce a shape with three sized boxes, making the collision on the bridge smooth and super fast. Naturally this needs to be done with EVERY object, but the payoff in amazing. Another one for my list, but when you start seeing slow-down when entering polygon soups, you will be requesting this new physics approach daily!
The Fisheye Problem
I have been getting letters! Apparently the render on Reloaded looks a little 'fisheye'. I keep stating that it's just the product of FOV and ASPECT, and entirely the result of a simple left handed perspective projection, but no-one quite believes me. If anyone is getting 'fisheye', turn your FOV down to 60 and then let me know if you still suffer from it.
Here is a typical scene from Rick:
And here it is when you glance upwards:
Is this normal, or common for a wide FOV game rendering. It would be good to see actual AAA games in similar situations, and whether nearby buildings scew when you look upwards (at high FOV).
Had a great interview over Google Talk today regarding Reloaded, so I will announce that when it comes out. Most of it you might already know, but I am sure I have released a few pearls during my prolonged wittering so probably worth checking, just in case :) An hour left, so I will wrap up an internal version send it to the internal team for testing, then some food.