Saturday, March 28, 2009

Repository Downtime

The repository is going doing as a precautionary measure today for 4 hours.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

General Window Archive

I've created some general purpose windows in Cinema 4D, 180 in total, uploaded in the Archive/GraphicPrototypes/Manufactured Elements/Windows folder. Feel free to use these grey scale renders to make textures and height maps for entities with windows.

You can also access to original C4D file, or request a .OBJ. I have saved the first 5 as OBJs.

As a reminder; the WIP prefab folder is where the basic 3d primitive models are. The archive is where more complex game ready objects (and textures) are stored. At the moment, the archive content is geared towards the demo, not the 3d engine, so the models there currently have an excess of polygons, but when working on the 3d game, a little more time will be spent keeping the polygon count down.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

The Leapfrog

This is The Leapfrog, she's the example ship I'm using to explain the 3d modular ship- which, as I've said, isn't really much different from that in 2d.

The leapfrog is made of up tile-like map data which defines the hull (as you can see from the skeletal version), to which objects (like the canons, the accordion airlock, the engines, etc.) and decals (like the "L-52" and "Frog") are affixed.

The hull configuration consists of one byte per cube (as seen in the skeletal version- 3 bytes of header data define the bounding box). These pieces, when rendered, access different models that fit that configuration (each relatively simple) as defined by the type. To these are applied the appropriate multitextures as defined by the type and in the map data.

The hull types themselves are stored as in a 'palette' of materials referenced by two bytes in this example (we could probably safely scale this back to one byte- 256 different kinds of armor per ship being more than adequate, as it's unlikely that even more scavenging players would often reach it).
This is primarily an issue of game logic, the style of model only representing one byte in each type- other values include things like damage resistance, weight, materials, etc. (these are of little concern to the rendering, so I won't address them here)

After the model has been determined, and the base texture, more local map data defines colour (one byte)- basically 'paint job'- as well as damage/grunge (done through multitexturing) and joint fusing (which I'll address later).

From there, various items (decals and objects) are affixed to the hull, which acts as a matrix of hard points- they have different logistical considerations, which I won't go into here.

The Leapfrog is a small ship- comparable to a simple starting ship. Her map data is only about 1.5 kb (this can't be compressed much further, as it's almost entirely non-redundant binary). The average ship would be about four times her size, though map data for such a ship would only be about 2 or 3 kb. A large ship would be about ten times her size (bear in mind this means more 'decks' and not necessarily much larger on the screen)- probably between 4 and 5 kb. A very large ship might be 10 kb- though once they get large enough, there's some redundancy in structure that would lend itself to some compression). An asymmetrical, and very complicated, space station might be 50 kb. A planet might be several hundred kb.

Monday, March 16, 2009


Actually, not very relevant.

Friday, March 13, 2009

3D Rendering

Hi I2B members,
I'm Riccardo and I recently joined the I2B project as a 3D graphics programmer.
I'm 31 and I'm Italian, but at the moment I'm living in the UK. I have a true passion for videogames, I have always been playing them, and I'm really excited to join such a big project. I looked at the code and arts, and I was impressed. I'm very glad to work together with such talented people.
My first contribution to the game is an X file loader and renderer with OpenGL. Here it is a screenshot of the very first 3D rendering. I'll do my best to improve it soon.

See you on the next MSN meeting, or on the boards.
And forgive me for my crap English, I just moved in UK some weeks ago and I still have to practise the language ;)

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Programming Strides

We have been quite for some time over here in the programming department, but we haven't been sleeping... at least not for the whole period.

As some of you already know Riccardo has joined our group as a graphics programmers and has already started making measurable contributions. Most notably, he is now working on our 3D engine to render .X models.

Meanwhile Thales has been busy building the last needed major feature required for the demo namely the action to shoot projectiles. This is almost done now (in revision 1148) and can be tested in Startup.Script4 (press 'x' to shoot, z & c to rotate the turret).

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Maintenance Underway

Our repository server is down for maintenance and should be back up and running in less than an hour.