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Stalkerh

The Empire is Back...

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24th April 2003

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#1 9 years ago

Hi. Some of you may remember me, some not... I started modding Armada 1 in 1999 on the official forums, soon moved to Apoc, then the fledgling STGN (later SGN). Lead/Co-lead on Star Trek vs. Star Wars, Star Wars: Fleet Command, and a few others in-between.

I'm back because of two things I love: this community, and the Freespace license.

I've got lots of ideas, and will be incorporating as many as I can while I convert and hardpoint-out roughly 60 models. I'm going to be using the AGILE development methodology with a twist... I'm going to start with a very small release of a few ships and gradually layer on to it with larger and larger "patches" until we reach the final product. That way, if something happens to me (like the last time I tried to finish a Freespace mod), you'll at least have something to play.

This mod will be open to public opinion. Anything you want to see, ask, and I'll try to get it in.

Layering this mod on top of FleetOps, by the way, so I can take full advantage of the changes there, especially working carrier code (which is essential for this license).

I'll post more details about what's what, and how it will all work later. For now, here's a few screenshots of what I'm working on now... enjoy! :)

Stalker




Cpt.BenSisko

Battlestations!!!!

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23rd March 2004

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#2 9 years ago

i remember you man...from waaay back when i first started playing Armada....how many polies are these ships gonna be man?




Majestic-MSFC

Majestic is thy Name!

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2nd April 2006

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#3 9 years ago

I remember you as well, welcome back it's good to have one of the earlier members of the community back in the game.




Stalkerh

The Empire is Back...

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24th April 2003

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#4 9 years ago
Cpt.BenSisko;5226114i remember you man...from waaay back when i first started playing Armada....how many polies are these ships gonna be man?

Each ship will have 3 LODs, weighing in at about the following:

LOD2 - 300-600 polies LOD1 - 600-2000 polies LOD0 - 6000-7000 polies

Obviously capital ships (especially for the Shivans) will have larger poly counts, while fighters will have lower ones (generally, unless you're right up next to them).

I know, quite a jump, right? :) Depending on how testing goes I may scrap the LOD setup and just go with single, lower-poly models.

I'm also making heavy use of bump maps, shine maps, and glow maps... so we'll see how that impacts things as well.

The goal will be to have a majority of the on-screen ships be fighters, with larger/more complex capital ships being something special that come in smaller groups (so not as much of a performance hit).




Freyr VIP Member

A2Files Staff

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6th February 2005

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#5 9 years ago

Hi Stalker, good to see you back again and it's great to see that your FS2 mod is back going. If you need help, my offer from 2006 is still good. :)

Because curiosity really did kill the cat, are you still going to do the methods of building and gathering resources that you laid out on SGN a few years back?




Stalkerh

The Empire is Back...

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24th April 2003

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#6 9 years ago

Thanks... I might take you back up on that offer :)

Well, there won't be much building this time around. Focusing on creating the atmosphere that you would actually see in Freespace. In this case, that means a battle looks like this:

- Start with a subspace Node and a cruiser or two with some fighters. Possibly a non-combat ship as well, which could lay turrets/mines and secure subspace nodes. - The objective would be to eliminate enemy forces and secure any enemy-controlled subspace nodes on the map. - The nodes will essentially be like un-shootable shipyards that allow you to request additional ships - "Research" will be handled via "Escalation". Essentially each battle starts out as a minor skirmish, and you can escalate it all the way up to a full-scale conflict. The higher you go, the better (and bigger) ships you can call in. There's a support cap, though, so you'll have to plan intelligently. -Still working out the resource model. My plan is to have each node be a resource, so the more you control the map, the more cool stuff you can call in.

Still working out the details, but that's the general idea




Stalkerh

The Empire is Back...

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24th April 2003

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#7 9 years ago

Not too much new to share. Had some issues importing the models I screenshotted above. Apparently Armada doesn't like multiple materials on one object. I'm going to have to take the multi-textured objects and split them apart, piece by piece before I can SOD them. I've never done that before, so it should be fun/time consuming.

I figured I'd get something in-game, so I've modded in the Fenris Cruiser. I've also gotten the early workings of the weapons for it, and it absolutely tears up anything in vanilla FleetOps. Thankfully for balance, it won't be nearly as poweful when compared to some of the stuff coming later (like the Sathanas).

The first screenshot is a good example of what you'll see for Admiral's log reports. The second represents the perspective you'll see ship "wireframes" in. I'll be using FleetOps ability to show the weapons on the wireframe, so you'll always be able to tell if that beam weapon of yours is ready to fire off or not.




Majestic-MSFC

Majestic is thy Name!

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2nd April 2006

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#8 9 years ago

Tjose are some really nice models, quality textures too. While I've never been into Freespace there sure is a lot of quality going into this project as seen by these early images.




apoclaydon

Modding Beginner

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7th October 2006

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#9 9 years ago

errr one question what are shine maps and dse armada1/2/fo support them (never heard of them before)




Stalkerh

The Empire is Back...

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24th April 2003

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#10 9 years ago

They basically make the model "glossy". I thought I could incorporate Shine and Glow maps, but it looks like all that Armada 2 supports is Diffuse and Normal (Bump) maps. Silly Direct 3D games. OpenGL is your friend. Ah well.

Thanks for the model comments. I wasn't the original author, so it's really more of a time intensive conversion.

Trying to get the LODs working is driving me crazy. I wish I could see the hierarchy of a properly-LODed model. I've definitely got LOD1 working, but the rest don't seem to be popping appropriately. I think it must have something to do with the LOD distance in ART_CFG, but there's always the possibility I did the hierarchy wrong. Playing with it, but I still can't LOD2 and LOD3 to pop. Any suggestions from folks who have LODed extensively in this game?

(Ultimate Unwrap 3D crashes now on this system, otherwise I'd pull apart an original A2 sod and check. Notepad++ lets me see the hierarchy points, but I'm not 100% sure on how they all stack.)