please make Varying Times of Day visible on-screen.

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Eleazar
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please make Varying Times of Day visible on-screen.

Post by Eleazar »

I've talked about this idea some, without generating much interest. I think if i show what i have in mind, the idea may gain more support. --please turn on GIF animation.

There are 2 major external conditions that effect how well a unit will fight, the terrain its standing on, and the Time of Day (hereafter abbreviated ToD). The terrain is obvious, but ToD is not always obvious.

• Notice currently the caves (in mixed maps) look like they are effected by ToD. This really is misleading, and unnatractive.
• Also all additional sources of light (MoL, campfires, lighthouses) don't look like they illuminate, but rather like some gauzy object floats above them. When graphics are darkened and then lightened, the result is muddier than if they had just been left alone.

To summarize: The current way ToD is made visible isn't very attractive and can be misleading.


On to my proposal:

Um, basicly that the game should look something like the second GIF.

I can think of 3 acceptable ways to create the transition between varying ToDs. (But i don't know which will be easier, or more efficient to code.)
• A 1-3 pixel "blurring" could be applied around the edges of the brighter ToD effect. (i.e. 1 pixel away from the full effect it would be applied at 66%. 2 pix away it would be applied at 33%) My example shows a mock-up of a 2 pix transition.
• ToD effects are applied to a hex's tile, and all it's transitions. In some situations this will look the best, in others less so. Most tiles have semi-transparent edges, which would generally give the right effect.
• A special transition tile is created as an alpha mask to soften the gradiation between one ToD effect and another. I could easily make this.


If this was implemented, a number of interesting things could happen.
Other light-making (or shadow-casting) terrains could be created. Lava might cast a glow. A cave-wall with torches could be created to cast light and give caves more strategic variety.
Attachments
The way it should be (more or less)
The way it should be (more or less)
ToD2.gif (180.55 KiB) Viewed 6946 times
The way it is now.
The way it is now.
ToD1.gif (336.84 KiB) Viewed 6944 times
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Ranger M
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Post by Ranger M »

If you improve the illuminate thing them it will be much better.

I like it :D

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turin
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Post by turin »

Well, I agree with you, completely.

However, TOD takes place inside caves too unless the scenario designer specifies otherwise (which he usually doesn't). Did you realize that in your proposal?
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Eleazar
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Post by Eleazar »

turin wrote:Well, I agree with you, completely.

However, TOD takes place inside caves too unless the scenario designer specifies otherwise (which he usually doesn't). Did you realize that in your proposal?
are you talking about something other than this code toward the beginning of the scenario's cfg?

Code: Select all

{DAWN}
	{MORNING}
	{AFTERNOON}
	{DUSK}
	{FIRST_WATCH}
	{SECOND_WATCH}
I should have been more specific, by ToD, (since i don't know a better term) i meant not neccesarily the "Clock" ToD, but rather the level of illunination. I.E. it could be said it's always "Day" next to a MoL.
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scott
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Post by scott »

Something I noticed with the new darker movement boundary system (shows possible and impossible moves when you click) is that it kills the game's performance. I'm afraid something like this would further kill the performance.
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Eleazar
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Post by Eleazar »

scott wrote:Something I noticed with the new darker movement boundary system (shows possible and impossible moves when you click) is that it kills the game's performance. I'm afraid something like this would further kill the performance.
That has been "optimized" or something, and the lag is currently almost unnoticable on my machine.

I tend to think my suggestion would have less impact on the CPU, because it would seldom have to be updated more than once a turn (unless you have lots of MoLs).
Feel free to PM me if you start a new terrain oriented thread. It's easy for me to miss them among all the other art threads.
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scott
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Post by scott »

But panning around the screen is what does it. I will recompile and see if it's just me that's slow. I get the same problem with the new mountains, but maybe that was also fixed. Otherwise, I pretty much agree - except for the hex-shaped halo. It's not too pretty.
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Darth Fool
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Post by Darth Fool »

I think that this is a good idea, but it is pretty low on my list of things to do. In order for it to be acceptable, it will need to be done in a way that does not negatively impact low-end users.

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Eleazar
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Post by Eleazar »

10 Months pass, and now we have a wide variety of cave terrains. However, caves could be more interesting if terrains could cast light on adjacent hexes.
Lava is illuminated, but that doesn't matter much, since it doesn't look any different, and fighting seldom takes place over lava. But if lava could visibly illuminate the surrounding hexes, then it would be tactically, (and visually) much more interesting.

And soon when we have converted over to the multi-letter terrain system, a cave wall varient with torches, or even glowing mushrooms could also provide light to surrounding hexes.

I assume changing the terrain definitions to allow illumination of adjacent hexes would be relatively simple, but displaying those different levels of illumination would be tricky.
Feel free to PM me if you start a new terrain oriented thread. It's easy for me to miss them among all the other art threads.
-> What i might be working on
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Jetrel
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Post by Jetrel »

One way to make illumination boundaries look good would be to basically use the same "mask" we currently use on the shroud images. The same soft edge.

I hate the way the current MoL halo looks, more than anything because it makes everything look so washed out (because instead of only increasing the luminosity of surrounding tiles, it is instead doing a simple overlay, and moving them > halfways to white).

Just my 2¢.

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