Wednesday, 6 November 2013

Wednesday Workalot

List Hopping

A rather ordinary day in the life of a developer. A few emails, a few cups of tea and LOTS and LOTS of coding. I have a mission to complete a small mountain of issues for Friday so have been getting my head down and cracking on with everything. See the web site for news on what I am up to, but they pretty much range through the whole engine tackling little bits.

A Big Bit

I did add a rather nice new drop down gadget to the slider panel system so you can easily select the sky, terrain and vegetation type you want. It works quite nicely, and at some point our 2D artists will be free to improve the cosmetics of the whole panel system.  The drop down system is pretty neat in that is just scans the contents of the sky, terrain and veg bank folders at the start, then allows you to select which one you want. It's pretty neat actually and I think it will be the main feature you will like in Friday's version.

Other Bits

I also dug out the Game Creator Store code and got it working with our VS 2010 redistributables after much ado. It's a back-burner integration but it will probably come in sooner rather than later, and I have also improved the legacy support for static entities so old models from classic will now be infused with the new in-game entity shader, and provided with a default normal and specular map if none are present for the entity.  I have also commissioned a guide to be written next week which will cover all the basics of how to prepare an entity for Reloaded, which will be an ideal guide on how to get your favorite classic models into the new software.

Signing Off

Rick asked me to improve the random terrain generation so the landscape was more 'interesting', but not 'Lee Crazy Interesting', so here is what it produces now when you start the software and when you select a New Level:

Hopefully it's not too crazy for your consumption.  The system will raise some ground if the random generator places you in the center of a lake, as I assume you always want to start your landscape creations from dry land :)

NOTE: If anyone wants to send an old legacy static entity to me, one that you wanted in Reloaded but it failed to look right or collide properly when you imported it, email it to me in a zip to Thanks!


  1. I can't find my post on the FPS creator forum now, but could you try creating a completely flat, water map (ie all the terrain is below water level), then saving, restarting FPSCR, and then looking on the top and right edges of the map. I keep getting a sort of wall appear along the whole edge, which can be removed with the leveller tool but then reappears on the restart. I suspect this is a mathematical problem.

    Good work, by the way.

  2. From the Blog and Web Site details all sounds very good and a lot of hard work and improvement. Thanks. Looking forward very much to the update.

    The boundary (wall) at the world perimeter is apparent - I have it on two sides and not on the other two for some reason.


  3. Very happy with the progress so far. I am curious if the night/day cycle will be on sliders. hours for daylight hours for night and the time of transition and sky box a and b. That would be a nifty touch to solve that and then it's done. :) maybe add an ambience night setting slider too.

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  5. nice a random map generator sounds good thanks lee m8 :D...
    now all I need is that undo button lol...

  6. Lee, this is why we need support to generate terrain from height maps. Your "Randomly generated" terrain looks incredible. Very realistic.

  7. @Lee will the upcoming changes mean that
    Levels made in this beta can be used in the upcoming Reloaded Versions without issues?

    Regarding the World Settings,
    a Road Type would be a nice feature to consider
    (I know its not time to talk about feature requests again), however as the base is already there it would complement the existing World Settings.
    Currently judging by the looks of the World Settings it looks a bit limited -
    For example if i want my level to have 2 or even 3 different Vegetation Types and
    2 different terrain types - it wouldnt be possible if i understand the World Settings correctly. So i would like to suggest braking this a bit further and expand it a bit more so that ppl can add more types of "Terrain Types" and "vegetation Types" to their scene.
    This way users would get much more freedom when creating vegetation/Terrain Based Levels.
    Thanks for the hard work Lee and Co.
    and for taking it under consideration

  8. @Mio how would I combine two terrain types (18 textures) into one terrain shader? I have an idea to experiment with having four vegetation images on one texture plate (as they do not require seamless wrapping) but such ideas will have to wait until we've finished the top three priorities (PPP) :)

  9. Nice work again Lee,thank you & the rest of the team.

  10. what would be nice is multi textured outdoor maps, but no idea if its possible to go from a arid desert to a lush meadows to a forests that leads upto snowy peaks?

  11. @Lee how about a Layer System?
    I do understand that Reloadeds shader system is complex
    a layer based terrain system might be better suitable, further you could split it up
    so that the terrain shader controls only the layers and the other shaders liek vegetation would depend on the layer system.
    This way you could for example define that Vegetation is only at the spots where you painted a user defined terrain texture.
    Am sure this overcomplicates alot for the common user but at the same time it gives to so called freedom (thats what Reloaded is actually supposed to be)
    , ofc that would mean the current way how the terrain is rendered would be obsolete.

    Now with that being said its just better to keep it the way it is, especially since a total rework of the terrain/system rendering would lead to plenty of new bugs and manhours wasted debugging those.
    Nah all in all am actually happy the way you layed it out, just forget my Layer suggestion.

  12. Careful or you'll find the screen overrun with panels before you know it Lee!

  13. With all those settings, a reset/default-button would be great :)

  14. So how dya make your grass texture work in reloaded. I think many would like the Insight if ok. And the 2 textures is that the maximum or will we be able to use more than one grass and rock texture? :)