Author Topic: The new lab  (Read 1147 times)

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Offline The E

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Today's Nightly build includes a new version of the F3 lab.

The biggest change in there is that this new lab allows you to preview mission backgrounds through the "Backgrounds" rider that has been added next to the "Ships" and "Weapons" riders. Clicking on it will open a window listing all available missions, sorted by the vp or directory they're in; if you then click on a mission name, that mission's background will be loaded.
It is important to note that, similar to FRED, nebula backgrounds are (at the moment, anyway) not displayed correctly; furthermore, if no ship or weapon has been selected, backgrounds will not be rendered.

This also changes the camera controls, the new controls are:
  • Hold LMB + Mouse movement rotates the ship
  • Hold RMB + Mouse movement rotates the camera
  • Hold Shift + Hold LMB + Mouse movement up/down moves the camera towards/away from the ship

The "Render Options" window has been updated as well: It now includes sliders to directly adjust the -bloom_intensity, -spec_static and -ambient_factor commandline options (spec_point and spec_tube only affect point and tube lights respectively, i.e. lights off of lasers, explosions and beams; they cannot be previewed in the lab) and a checkbox to switch -no_emissive_light on or off.

A few things have been removed: It is no longer possible to switch to different LODs on models or display a ship's debris; the former is something you can simulate by moving the camera far away so that the LOD switch happens "naturally". Debris has been disabled for the moment until I can figure out how to actually make it work within the context of the new lab, this will come back. For similar reasons, you cannot preview the techroom models of weapons; this too will find its way back in, but not for now.
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Offline karajorma

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Seems to be working for me. Anything specific you want us to check for?

Also, since the movement controls are different from FRED (or in-game for that matter) can we get a help option that tells us what they are?
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Offline The E

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Also, since the movement controls are different from FRED (or in-game for that matter) can we get a help option that tells us what they are?

This is addressed here.

Also, I just noticed that glowpoints attached to rotating subsystems do not rotate correctly, that's something you don't need to tell me :).

As for feedback: I don't know? Just tell me what you guys would like to see added to the lab?
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Offline mjn.mixael

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Excited for the new Lab!

I am bummed that we lost easy access to lods/debris/tech models (for now). I used to click through those, forcing the engine to load each one to check for errors. However this method of viewing lods will be super helpful if there's a distance measurement on the screen.
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Offline Spoon

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Without having seen it actually with my own eyes yet: what mjn.mixael said.
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Offline Nightmare

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Without having seen it myself yet, too- That would end up that you would have to keep an outdated built around to do easy debugging. Wouldn't be good...

 

Offline The E

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Excited for the new Lab!

I am bummed that we lost easy access to lods/debris/tech models (for now). I used to click through those, forcing the engine to load each one to check for errors. However this method of viewing lods will be super helpful if there's a distance measurement on the screen.

I shall add a distance printout soon.
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Offline chief1983

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Excited for the new Lab!

I am bummed that we lost easy access to lods/debris/tech models (for now). I used to click through those, forcing the engine to load each one to check for errors. However this method of viewing lods will be super helpful if there's a distance measurement on the screen.

This is why I had asked if both the old and new lab could be maintained together for at least a while until there was no advantage to the old one.
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Offline Spoon

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Having checked it out now, I got to say, it's really nice. Makes it really easy to make screenshots of a specific ship, and should be massively helpful with getting reflect maps to look right in the future etc.
Being able to select backgrounds from missions like that is  :yes:

Selectable lods is preferable over the zoom out lods though. Since most of the level 2-3-4 lods tend to be kind of hard to see with the distance you have to zoom out for them...

Edit: forgot to mention, the controls for the camera/ship dont really seem ideal. Rotating things seem 'off'

« Last Edit: February 17, 2018, 06:41:02 pm by Spoon »
Urutorahappī!!

[02:42] <@Axem> spoon somethings wrong
[02:42] <@Axem> critically wrong
[02:42] <@Axem> im happy with these missions now
[02:44] <@Axem> well
[02:44] <@Axem> with 2 of them

 

Offline Axem

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I think this is pretty cool and being able to select backgrounds is pretty cool as well. This is a big help in previewing models and maps!

So here's my small ideas/issues with the lab so far:
Show Thrusters doesn't seem to always work. It seems to only load the first set of loaded thrusters. Like load up a GTF Ulysses, then try an SF Mara. The Mara won't have thrusters.
Camera controls are a bit weird. When mouse dragging is a thing, usually the object rotates in a way that follows the mouse movement, but here it seems like the pitch is inverted. Maybe invert that and it'd be easier to use.
Reset view would be pretty cool!
And reset lighting? The ambient, direct and bloom sliders default to minimum, but those are not the default values.
I know its maybe not in the scope of this, but scroll bars would be great for those species/mod paths with lots of ships/missions. (Or maybe a way to paginate at least?)
Also this is a taste thing, but I've never been a big fan of "trackball" style object rotation. It introduces this weird tilt to the view that I always try to correct with moderate success. I like "turntable" style view rotation, which basically has no bank in it. Maybe some key combo could toggle/switch/activate one camera rotation style to the other?

Lastly, this has always been a great feature, but its always been sadly hidden away to a key that is not documented at all within the game. I think it'd be cool if some icon or something could be added to the tech room that would load up the selected ship in the lab. Just to make this more accessible and user friendly.

 

Offline PVD_Hope

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Holy wow, what have I missed??? What is this "lab"? It sounds awesome!
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Offline Nightmare

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Press "F3" in the mainhall and find out.

 

Offline Spoon

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So hey, reviving an old topic. Has there been plans to actually change or add to the current camera controls? I find the new camera controls kind of frustrating to use, it seems needlessly hard to position a ship precisely the way I want to, compared to the old camera scheme.

Or to put it differently, please add the things Axem posted.
Urutorahappī!!

[02:42] <@Axem> spoon somethings wrong
[02:42] <@Axem> critically wrong
[02:42] <@Axem> im happy with these missions now
[02:44] <@Axem> well
[02:44] <@Axem> with 2 of them

 

Offline Nightmare

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Could some of the features from the old F3 lab (transparency and stuff) be readded? I've been keeping outdated builts for months now.

 

Offline mjn.mixael

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So hey, reviving an old topic. Has there been plans to actually change or add to the current camera controls? I find the new camera controls kind of frustrating to use, it seems needlessly hard to position a ship precisely the way I want to, compared to the old camera scheme.

Or to put it differently, please add the things Axem posted.

+1
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Offline Col. Fishguts

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So hey, reviving an old topic. Has there been plans to actually change or add to the current camera controls? I find the new camera controls kind of frustrating to use, it seems needlessly hard to position a ship precisely the way I want to, compared to the old camera scheme.

Or to put it differently, please add the things Axem posted.

Yeah, having just tried it out, the camera controls are very confusing. Copy/pasting the camera controls from the old lab would be much appreciated.
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Offline Nightmare

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So hey, reviving an old topic. Has there been plans to actually change or add to the current camera controls? I find the new camera controls kind of frustrating to use, it seems needlessly hard to position a ship precisely the way I want to, compared to the old camera scheme.

Or to put it differently, please add the things Axem posted.

Yes. :nod: But...

Quote
Lastly, this has always been a great feature, but its always been sadly hidden away to a key that is not documented at all within the game. I think it'd be cool if some icon or something could be added to the tech room that would load up the selected ship in the lab. Just to make this more accessible and user friendly.

...seems to be rather spoilerish to me. While feature documentation is important, the F3 lab was (to me) always the place you should go when you finished the entire campaign.

 

Offline wookieejedi

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So hey, reviving an old topic. Has there been plans to actually change or add to the current camera controls? I find the new camera controls kind of frustrating to use, it seems needlessly hard to position a ship precisely the way I want to, compared to the old camera scheme.

Or to put it differently, please add the things Axem posted.

Yes. :nod: But...

Quote
Lastly, this has always been a great feature, but its always been sadly hidden away to a key that is not documented at all within the game. I think it'd be cool if some icon or something could be added to the tech room that would load up the selected ship in the lab. Just to make this more accessible and user friendly.

...seems to be rather spoilerish to me. While feature documentation is important, the F3 lab was (to me) always the place you should go when you finished the entire campaign.

I just learned about the F3 tab from this recent post...it's quite awesome!

 

Offline Nightmare

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Seems like FSO feature documentation coverage on the wiki and elsewhere is a bit... insufficient. I remember it took me a long time (also probably years) to figure out where these cool screens came from.

 

Offline Spoon

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Couple of months later, still nothing?

The E, what gives?
Urutorahappī!!

[02:42] <@Axem> spoon somethings wrong
[02:42] <@Axem> critically wrong
[02:42] <@Axem> im happy with these missions now
[02:44] <@Axem> well
[02:44] <@Axem> with 2 of them