Wing Commander Prophecy: Secret Ops Model Update Pack

Discussion in 'Fan Projects & Editing' started by DefianceIndustries, Nov 25, 2015.

  1. Lt.Overload

    Lt.Overload Rear Admiral

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    This is huge. I just saw gr1mre4per's topic on his "Unlimited" patch, and seeing you put it to work is just amazing. Possibilities are endless now. Well... more endless than they were before. :p

    I'm super-glad to see this game (engine, whatever) become relevant again. From your model updates to this new patch, to whatever comes next.
     
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  2. Quarto

    Quarto Unknown Enemy

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    Oh, well, I mean, you know, if you really want to hand it over, I'm sure I won't be so stubborn as to say no... ;)
     
  3. DefianceIndustries

    DefianceIndustries Commodore

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    Happy New Year all!

    Well then, in that case...

    Durango-blender.JPG Durango-ingame1.jpg Durango-ingame2.jpg Durango-ingame3.jpg

    my Durango has been languishing in "Gearbox Patch Hell" for the last several months, I was afraid she was going to go to waste... :) This was my second test of the new patch. Not quite Galactica-scale polys but a respectable 20K faces/ 48K triangles.
     
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  4. Quarto

    Quarto Unknown Enemy

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    That certainly would be a pretty thing to add, even though it might upstage our Bengal-class Dauntless a bit... but I'm sure you'll get around to that one day ;). More to the point, though, if you do feel like prepping that Intrepid, I'm afraid I'd have to ask you to also prepare a destroyed version, because it's something you get to see in UE. But hey, I think you might actually quite enjoy that as a break from typical modelling - at least, it seems Eder always enjoyed doing the destroyed stuff, because it was about hacking, breaking, charring textures and so on.
     
  5. DefianceIndustries

    DefianceIndustries Commodore

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    Actually I had a question about that. I know vision uses hard points to generate explosions on destroyed capital ships. does it use the hp's on the main mesh or the destroyed mesh?
     
  6. gr1mre4per

    gr1mre4per Rear Admiral

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    It's any hard point on the base mesh. It's a good idea to avoid multiple components where it's hard point is at 0 0 0 as explosions randomly happen more times at the center.
     
  7. DefianceIndustries

    DefianceIndustries Commodore

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    so if I create for example Durango_hull and Durango_hull_D (for the destroyed object) any HPs on Durango_hull will generate explosions but the game will display Durango_hull_D? Just want to confirm so I'm not going to add random HP's to meshes that don't need them. :)
     
  8. gr1mre4per

    gr1mre4per Rear Admiral

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    For normal ships that you kill in game there is no destroyed base mesh only destroyed components.

    The Fralthi II in the first prophecy mission is a special case. It is built as a destroyed ship.
     
  9. Quarto

    Quarto Unknown Enemy

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    As gr1mre4per said there are essentially two different ways that destroyed capships are implemented. On the one hand, you have those capships that function normally, and can be destroyed - and on the other, you have capships which are implemented in the already-destroyed form.

    Funnily enough, by the way, even though WCP uses an already-destroyed capship in the very first mission of the game, they never bothered to fix a major issue with the depiction of already-destroyed capships - namely, that the very first thing they do when you see them, is die, with a big explosion, and even (if someone was daft enough to give such a capship the wrong pilot) death comms. The same problem shows up later in the game when you fly past an alien comm relay station you'd destroyed in the previous mission - and once again it starts by exploding. You'd think that it would have occurred to them that if you want to show a ship that was already-destroyed, it shouldn't start by dying, but - oh, well.

    Anyway, so yes - the minor explosions are generated randomly at the hardpoints on the main capship hull. I disagree about hardpoints set to 0,0,0 being a problem - it's fine, because usually you'll only have one such hardpoint (multiple components can be tied to one hardpoint), and usually it will be hidden away in the middle of the hull. Just make sure to have plenty of other hardpoints. In fact, it's often good to add some hardpoints to a capship that are used solely for explosions.

    The big problem with capships (live ones, that is), is the limitation imposed on the destructible meshes by the existence of turrets, and the fact that turrets are not tied to components but rather to the main mesh. Essentially: while there's nothing stopping you from having a capship that consists entirely of destructible components, with no real main hull (like we did with the Targu II frigate in Standoff), if such a capship has more than one component, you're going to wind up with the rather silly situation where you've got active turrets attached to a destroyed part of the ship. Worse still, if you decide to really warp the destroyed mesh, those turrets might be floating around in mid-air. It's a nuisance, because of course, the main hull doesn't get replaced with a destroyed version - not even a texture change!

    It is for this reason, destroyed capships in WCP are always fundamentally so unsatisfying, and it is for this reason that on the one occasion where they really wanted the player to take interest in a destroyed capship (the first mission of the game), they implemented a special already-destroyed version with far more visible damage than you'd normally see killing a capship in the game. We also did this in UE with the Intrepid, having a separate version of the ship show up in the mission where you inspect the wreck - but if I recall correctly, we didn't make good use of this opportunity. Apart from adding a bunch of hardpoints for extra explosions, I don't recall us making any significant changes to the hull - I think even the textures were more or less the same, just with darkened engines and stuff. I'd love to see a really good wreck of the Intrepid to put in the game.

    Come to think of it, hypothetically, it should be possible to actually use far more interesting destroyed capships in the game with the aid of a simple trick - the moment the last component is destroyed, deactivate whatever capship is there, and in its place activate a specially prepared already-destroyed version. In that case, the initial explosion would actually work to the game's advantage. Could be quite an interesting thing to try.
     
  10. Lt.Overload

    Lt.Overload Rear Admiral

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    Didn't WC3-4 work something like this? Destroying the capship would cause a bright white flash and all that would be left is a shell? Granted that had some limitations too, at least for the engine and hardware at the time. When you looked away, didn't the 'shell' despawn?
     
  11. Quarto

    Quarto Unknown Enemy

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    Yes, they did. However, they did it automatically - that was the way the game actually handled capships. In our case, it would have to be done as a scripted event, and for that reason, might not work perfectly. There's bound to be various issues. Still, it's an interesting idea that I will test out, because it holds promise to address a fairly substantial flaw in the game. Capship deaths are one of the things we've always been terribly jealous of, vis-a-vis Freespace.
     
  12. Dark Sentinel

    Dark Sentinel 2nd Lieutenant

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    You mean you can use the ship hardpoints that do absolutely nothing, but can be destroyed for "taste" anyway?
     
  13. Quarto

    Quarto Unknown Enemy

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    Basically, yes. However, a hardpoint never actually does anything, nor can it actually ever be destroyed - it's just a name with coordinates, so that the game knows where child objects (including objects generated by the ship, such as particles and missiles) are to be placed relative to the main model. In the case of capships, one of the additional ways that hardpoints are used is to provide the game with a bunch of coordinates to place small explosions in, after the capship is dead. The game basically goes through the hardpoints in a random pattern and places an explosion at one of them once every couple of seconds. So, having additional hardpoints helps to ensure that you don't only see explosions in places where the turrets were attached.
     
  14. Dark Sentinel

    Dark Sentinel 2nd Lieutenant

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    Well, eh, okay, you understood me.
    I mean, like, there're big plasma guns on most bug capships. Why not make them still do nothing, but be destroyable, like Midway's "Plasma Weapon". It doesn't shoot, so why not make same for bugs?
     
  15. DefianceIndustries

    DefianceIndustries Commodore

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    There's no reason why you couldn't. you would just need to separate the guns from the main hull as separate meshes and make a destroyed version of the mesh and then in the ship file designate the parts as Plasma chunks (or any other destroyable sub object chunk).
     
  16. gr1mre4per

    gr1mre4per Rear Admiral

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    I think you are limited to 10 components at the moment. The dreadnought has a bridge, engine, launcher and three shield emitters so not enough components left for the seven plasmas on that ship. Hey why not make them actual plasma turrets? Use the same turret type as the barracuda which has no moving parts. Could look quite cool in game play.
     
  17. Dark Sentinel

    Dark Sentinel 2nd Lieutenant

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    Weeeell, IIRC those are anti-capship weapons. Also that will increase the ship total firepower. Good for dreadnought, since it looks undergunned, not that good for cruiser and destroyers.
     
  18. gr1mre4per

    gr1mre4per Rear Admiral

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    You're right. One of the documents on the Dev disks quotes the destroyer as having two guns, the cruiser as having three and the dreadnought as having seven. Looking at the mesh for the dreadnought the hard points at the end of each of the seven arms are labelled as Gun_01 to Gun_07. Seems the plan was there but never implemented because you can't kill cap ships with shots on the base mesh.
     
  19. DefianceIndustries

    DefianceIndustries Commodore

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    Which is funny because in a couple of missions in SO, the Cerberus starts firing at Tritons and just keeps mindlessly firing at them after you've killed them. it's also kind of annoying because even dead cap ships seem to get targeting priority for turrets. So the Cerberus ignores incoming fighters and torpedoes to shoot at dead alien ships.

    IIRC there is also an entry in bullet.iff for the alien plasma weapon. It has no stats though, just a blank entry.
     
  20. DefianceIndustries

    DefianceIndustries Commodore

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    Oh you mean this little old thing?
    Bengal_WIP6.jpg Bengal_WIP7.png Bengal_WIP8.png Bengal_WIP9.jpg

    The HW mod is looking to add a Bengal to the UBW faction. So I'll move this up the chain a bit. Although it's planned to get a red paint job like the other UBW ships. hope that won't cause a problem. This is still a rough clay, there are some fixes planned for it before its ready.
     
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