Author Topic: [RELEASE] GTI Europa (previously: Small, somewhat crappy modular station)  (Read 17584 times)

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Offline ssmit132

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Re: Small, somewhat crappy modular station
There is one obvious solution: simply not to dock a section to another. Leave S16 unconnected to S1. This is an acceptable solution, assuming the entire station remains intact. But most ships, and this station is no exception, exist to be PWND by BEAMZ. What happens if, say section 9 is destroyed? The rest of the station is pushed away by the explosion- and, because of the S1-S16 gap, "the rest of the station" is now two distinct pieces. S1-S8 and S10-S16 float away from each other, and S1 drifts away from S16 without any warning of their separation.
Wasn't there an unmovable flag for ships made at some point? I don't know whether it'll be in the next stable release but I remember reading about attempts to implement it (I think it was spurred on by those girder models).

 

Offline AndrewofDoom

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Re: Small, somewhat crappy modular station
I have GIMP but I have never tried editing textures before

It's a good time to learn then. Believe me I'm a much happier man now that I've learned how to model, texture, and rig. It gives me all the freedom in the world to do all the bizarre things I've ever desired!
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Offline Legate Damar

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Re: Small, somewhat crappy modular station
I am still learning modeling in Blender

 

Offline Shivan Hunter

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Re: Small, somewhat crappy modular station
There is one obvious solution: simply not to dock a section to another. Leave S16 unconnected to S1. This is an acceptable solution, assuming the entire station remains intact. But most ships, and this station is no exception, exist to be PWND by BEAMZ. What happens if, say section 9 is destroyed? The rest of the station is pushed away by the explosion- and, because of the S1-S16 gap, "the rest of the station" is now two distinct pieces. S1-S8 and S10-S16 float away from each other, and S1 drifts away from S16 without any warning of their separation.
Wasn't there an unmovable flag for ships made at some point? I don't know whether it'll be in the next stable release but I remember reading about attempts to implement it (I think it was spurred on by those girder models).

Yes, but that wouldn't really be a fix; if a piece of the station were destroyed I'd expect the rest of it to drift away, not remain completely stationary. If it's not supposed to be destroyed, leaving two sections undocked would work, and I wouldn't expect it to be taking impacts large enough to move it anyway.

Damar: it's not too hard to select a portion of a texture and apply a colorize filter, or modify the hue. look up some GIMP tutorials, that's how I learned to get around it. The UI can seem odd at first, but you get used to it.

 

Offline Shivan Hunter

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Re: Small, somewhat crappy modular station
So I haven't been modelling or texturing or doing anything productive for a while. Time to change that. I posted some textures for this in IRC a while ago, and there's a bit more done now. Part of the center sphere is done, as well as a standard layer for the ring sections and the complete texture for the boring/filler sections.





The filler sections can also be viewed on my new, shiny p3d.in account: http://p3d.in/AGAFc

 

Offline Black Wolf

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Re: Small, somewhat crappy modular station
Nice! Nice looking small stations will never go unusued.

Or, actually maybe this one will - after all, it doesn't appear to be green... :p
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Offline Shivan Hunter

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Re: Small, somewhat crappy modular station
Well here it is in green, specifically for Legate Damar. :P

 
Re: Small, somewhat crappy modular station
It's always good to see people get the old stuff dug out from the miles of dust and then do some magic.

And then release their works of art...

P.S. That station ain't crappy.
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Offline TwentyPercentCooler

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Re: Small, somewhat crappy modular station
Well here it is in green, specifically for Legate Damar. :P

I larfed.

 
Re: Small, somewhat crappy modular station
Hope to see this finished, more stations always are helpful!
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Offline Spoon

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Re: Small, somewhat crappy modular station
Well here it is in green, specifically for Legate Damar. :P
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Re: Small, somewhat crappy modular station
This would make a good pirate outpost or civilian station. I would like to see it in game.  :yes:

 

Offline Black Wolf

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Re: Small, somewhat crappy modular station
Technical issue (so many :words:)

Consider the ring section here:



Section 1 connects to S2, S2 to S3, and so on, until S15 connects to S16. This means we have a 16-section ring, all docked in one piece, and all the sections have well-defined positions relative to S1. This includes S16.

So what if we add a connection between S1 and S16?

In this case, S16 has two well-defined positions: the one defined by the S1-S2-...-S16 docks, and one defined by the S1-S16 dock. Because it's a 16-piece ring, these two positions are the same. Approximately.

I really doubt that the exact floating-point representation of S16's dock is equivalent to S1's dock, after being transposed 15 times, including all the error inherent in that process. This means that FSO cannot be expected to resolve the position of S16, and since our selection of "S1" is arbitrary, FSO cannot be expected to resolve the position of any section in the ring. I've done some testing in FRED, and it doesn't crash, but I'm still treading in the murky waters of undefined behavior.

In case you're still thinking of S16 being in the exact position that's needed: Imagine if I tried to connect S15 to S1. Would the ring just "bend" inwards to accommodate the 15-section ring? No? Didn't think so. Two possible positions for S15, and no good solution as to where to put it.

There is one obvious solution: simply not to dock a section to another. Leave S16 unconnected to S1. This is an acceptable solution, assuming the entire station remains intact. But most ships, and this station is no exception, exist to be PWND by BEAMZ. What happens if, say section 9 is destroyed? The rest of the station is pushed away by the explosion- and, because of the S1-S16 gap, "the rest of the station" is now two distinct pieces. S1-S8 and S10-S16 float away from each other, and S1 drifts away from S16 without any warning of their separation.

Quick fix: When any section of the ring is destroyed, use an explosion-effect in FRED placed between S1 and S16, and explain it away as structural failure caused by the same impact that destroyed S9.

The other solution-- and I am entirely unsure if this would work-- is to dock the entire ring and pray like crazy that the behavior isn't TOO undefined. FSO will be able to resolve positions exactly as soon as one section is destroyed. As to what happens before that... I'd need to do further testing.

I've been thinking about this, and this is the best way I've come up with so far.

Step 1: In Mission specs, check "Allow Daisy Chain Docking" Place and then dock the 16 segments of the station in FRED as usual, 1-2-3...14-15-16. Don't dock 16 to 1, that will only cause problems. Put the spherical bit in the middle, and name it whatever you want your station to be called (Like GTI Modular Station). The segment names don't matter.

Step 2: Select all 16 ring segments and open the Misc screen in the ships editor. Check the boxes for "Guadianed", "Does Not Move" and "Stealth" (this assumes a hostile station - for friendly, you'll also want "Invisible to Friendlies When Stealthed" and I think "Hidden From Sensors")

Step 3: Select the core, and open the Misc screen. Check "Guardianed" and "Does Not Move" - leave the rest alone.

Step 4: Open up the events editor. Create an event that jettisons the cargo from all the ring segments (or at least every second ring segment). It should look basically like this:

Code: [Select]
Initial Status
 - when
 - - true
 - - jettison-cargo-delay
 - - - Segment 1
 - - - 0
 - - jettison-cargo-delay
 - - - Segment 3
 - - - 0
 - - jettison-cargo-delay
 - - - Segment 5
 - - - 0

etc. etc. on to segment 15

The sexp unfortunately won't let you jettison cargo from multiple ships at once, which is inconvenient, but it's not too bad.

Step 5: Create another sexp to copy the damage between segments. There is a ship-copy-damage sexp, but that's a bit over-complex for what we want to do here, especially since we wont be working with subsystems. Instead, make a sexp like this:


Code: [Select]
Copy Damage Core
 - when-argument
 - - every-of
 - - - GTI Modular Station
 - - - Segment 1
 - - - Segment 2
 - - - Segment 3
 - - - Segment 4
 - - - Segment 5
 - - - Segment 6
 - - - Segment 7
 - - - Segment 8
 - - - Segment 9
 - - - Segment 10
 - - - Segment 11
 - - - Segment 12
 - - - Segment 13
 - - - Segment 14
 - - - Segment 15
 - - - Segment 16
 - - true
 - - set-subsystem-strength
 - - - <argument>
 - - - hull
 - - - min
 - - - - hits-left
 - - - - - GTI Modular Station
 - - - - hits-left
 - - - - - Segment 1
 - - - - hits-left
 - - - - - Segment 2
 - - - - hits-left
 - - - - - Segment 3
 - - - - hits-left
 - - - - - Segment 4
 - - - - hits-left
 - - - - - Segment 5
 - - - - hits-left
 - - - - - Segment 6
 - - - - hits-left
 - - - - - Segment 7
 - - - - hits-left
 - - - - - Segment 8
 - - - - hits-left
 - - - - - Segment 9
 - - - - hits-left
 - - - - - Segment 10
 - - - - hits-left
 - - - - - Segment 11
 - - - - hits-left
 - - - - - Segment 12
 - - - - hits-left
 - - - - - Segment 13
 - - - - hits-left
 - - - - - Segment 14
 - - - - hits-left
 - - - - - Segment 15
 - - - - hits-left
 - - - - - Segment 16



Trigger Count = 99999 Interval = 1

Step 6: Finally, make one more sexp:

Code: [Select]
- when-argument
 - - every-of
 - - - GTI Modular Station
 - - - Segment 1
 - - - Segment 2
 - - - Segment 3
 - - - Segment 4
 - - - Segment 5
 - - - Segment 6
 - - - Segment 7
 - - - Segment 8
 - - - Segment 9
 - - - Segment 10
 - - - Segment 11
 - - - Segment 12
 - - - Segment 13
 - - - Segment 14
 - - - Segment 15
 - - - Segment 16
 - - >
 - - - 2
 - - - hits-left
 - - - - GTI Modular Station
 - - self-destruct
 - - - <argument>

Note that I've not actually tested this, but in theory, it should work fairly well. The downside to this method is that it won't allow any subsystems or turrets not attached to the central sphere. I don't know how you'd do that without code changes, unless you do what I did for the modular kit and make the turrets entirely separate ships. You'll need to target them as ships rather than with K, however. Also, the station will appear in the log as having self destructed, and the player will never get the kill for it.

To make this work pofside, you'll need to add 2 tiny invisible polies to the spherical centre bit, at the radius of the ring in two opposite directions, one offset up on the y axis, the other down, as part of the main detail0 submodel. That'll ensure that the targeting brackets cover the whole station. Also, each piece, including the core, will need to be given the entire hull strength of the station, and they should all be the same (unless you want to be clever about it - a reactor segment that takes damage more quickly or something).

So, that's my idea for making it work - others may have different/better techniques though.
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Offline Shivan Hunter

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Re: Small, somewhat crappy modular station
That's a good way to make the entire station act like a single ship. That's probably not the direction I would go- I would let the player target each section, and acknowledge that they're different pieces by giving them designations (Awesome Station Docking Bay 3/Sensor Array 2, Awesome Station Section Alpha/Section Beta/Section Gamma, etc, assuming they're consistent). This would also let part of the station be destroyed, but the rest of it stay intact, as though it's compartmentalized (which any good installation would be).

As for FSO resolving positions, I still need to figure out what options are available before I make any decisions as to how I'll handle it.

If a mod wants to do what BW said, they are of course free to edit the finished models! (I'll probably provide .wings or .blend files on request if I haven't screwed them up too much :P)

 
Re: Small, somewhat crappy modular station
How are the pieces snapped together?  By snapped I mean when two seperate pieces come together.  Do they come together at a 90 degree or so angle or are they at 180 degree.  If it's 180 you'll have issues with shine maps having a weird cut-off point. Then I'd recommend adding some "detail" at the connection points to hide that.  Take a look at saga's/my hanger walls and/or my Epsilon starbase to get some idea of what I mean.
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Offline Shivan Hunter

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Re: Small, somewhat crappy modular station
Hmm? They'll be docked to each other in the kind of configuration seen in the pics I posted. It's 180 degrees I guess but there won't be shinemap issues since the sections are separate ships, with no connected UVs.

[EDIT]: Some progress on the weapon/connector sections:


And, I went ahead and converted one of the sections. It's about 1/10th of the size it should be, and there's no shinemap or normalmap, but conversion went smoothly and it looks like a ring of docked sections works OK in FRED. I still haven't tested it ingame yet, with collision testing and all that fun stuff, but the fact that FRED doesn't complain is promising:

(The center point of all the stations is at the center of the ring- it will NOT be like that at final release. I just couldn't be arsed to transform it in PCS :P)

« Last Edit: January 21, 2013, 02:52:37 am by Shivan Hunter »

 

Offline Shivan Hunter

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Re: Small, somewhat crappy modular station
doublepost FTW





Turret and connector section finished - also viewable on p3d.in!

I may be updating these textures a bit (especially the turret textures) and making them a bit less crap, but for now they're finished. On to some other sections, where I can actually see substantial work getting done rather than filling in tiny charts one by one on turrets... [/rant]

 

Offline Cyborg17

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Re: Small, somewhat crappy modular station
I noticed in the last picture that there are damage bitmaps in between sections. Do you expect that the station will always be made as if it's a complete ring?  When I was planning in case you ever released, I had the idea of having half circle stations, or maybe a few sections connected together.  This would be for civilian stations of differing uses, for example, a mining outpost vs. a corporate system headquarters.

By the way, please do finish!  Being able to control what a station looks like modularly, like this, can very easily change how flexible we are able to make civilian missions scenarios, not to mention making civilian stations believable. (Mass-produced station sections, custom ordered, are much more believable than giant or even mid-sized fully-made civilian stations.)
« Last Edit: January 26, 2013, 09:23:02 am by Cyborg17 »

 

Offline Enioch

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Re: Small, somewhat crappy modular station
You've missed the 'end' sections he's shown us in the past, Cyborg.

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Re: Small, somewhat crappy modular station
Some form of arms to grab stuff like asteroids or capships (or try standardizing one or two connectors with the Modular Construction Kit).
A single module with dockpoints that would fit the Kit on the top, bottom and outer surfaces would do this job perfectly.

This would be useful especially in early space exploration settings, where a ring segment and reactor could be connected to a few gas tanks with the modular kit, creating a station that looks no more futuristic than the XXI-XXII century.
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