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Westhill Progress (November)
(950 posts, closed, started )
Westhill Progress (November)
Hello Racers,

We have been continuing to work hard on the new Westhill. As many of you know, we have gone to a new level with the new track. There is a new National configuration and an International configuration which is similar to the old Westhill. Eric has made the scenery highly detailed and driveable, which makes the open configurations a lot of fun.

The high level of detail resulted in some loss of frame rate, specially in open configs, so we have worked on a new system where open configs can use 'paths' (and change between paths as needed) so LFS knows where you are and what you can see from your location. This keeps the frame rate high by avoiding drawing too many objects. I worked on a new hidden object removal system which doesn't miss objects like the old system did. I plan to release updated hidden object files for the existing tracks.

In the last few days I made a new system that allows for higher detailed fences without increasing the number of objects. It is a flexible system that allows a repeating model to be placed along any of the 'segments' that are used for tracks and fences in LFS.

This has been used now to improve the appearance of some of the fences and barriers in the new Westhill and allowed the removal of some 'alpha test' textures (which do not work well with multisampling AA) because geometry can now be used for repeating supports. I was able to write some auto-repair code that saved Eric from having to manually edit thousands of fence segments.

Eric is finishing some models and has been filling some of the distant landscape scenery. I still have a few things to do left on my lists. After the weekend I'll need to examine my notes and get them together onto fewer sheets of paper and I'll know where I stand then. We are trying to get the release done as quickly as possible but with high quality.

We hope you enjoy these screen shots that show the new fence and barrier system.
Attached images
New Object System1.jpg
New Object System2.jpg
New Object System3.jpg
New Object System4.jpg
Great work, can't wait to try it out.
Brilliant! Looks like it's time for me to get my wheel from under the bed again. The new scenery looks pretty amazing...
is the eta still a few weeks?
Amazing Big grin
Oh man, there's going to be so much to explore, let alone driving the track itself.

Epic work so far.
Quote from CodeLyoko1 :is the eta still a few weeks?

Yes but my head is spinning a little. I'll need to get my notes together on Monday and see what needs to be done. I plan to first release a compatible test patch with the new hidden object detection files and open path switching system for the existing tracks, as soon as possible, with Westhill into testing not long after. That's the general idea.
#9 - Nilex
That half minimap teaser on the billboard. Cool stuff!
I'm on the fence on this one..
Mouth-watering. Is it me or does the new Westhill feature new gigantic trees? The tree on the far left in the second screenshot looks stunning.
#13 - robt
Quote from Nilex :That half minimap teaser on the billboard. Cool stuff!

And the volkswagen sponsor boards :P
Looks stunning ... looking forward to it!
I really does look much more detailed compared to the previous set of screenshots, seems like the delay was worth it.

Thanks for frequent reports!
Looking very tidy indeed. Hope to play it before Christmas?
Impressive what a change some good textures and optimizations can make. And DX9 capabilities are greater than this, no doubt. Looking forward to see your work guys. Keep it up !
Quote from sicotange :Mouth-watering. Is it me or does the new Westhill feature new gigantic trees? The tree on the far left in the second screenshot looks stunning.

They still look like billboard trees, but very detailed ones.
Looking good
it's... beautiful!!!
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#22 - CSF
Are we really losing our selves over fence posts? Really?
Quote from CSF :Are we really losing our selves over fence posts? Really?

It's an important addition to the engine. DX10 added it as a library feature, so I think it's nice that LFS' engine has that functionality added to it as well in DX9, plus it allows for more intricate repeated geometry instead of alpha textures.

EDIT:
Actually, it seems that DX9 has geometry instancing support as well: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Geometry_instancing
Quote from dawesdust_12 :It's an important addition to the engine. DX10 added it as a library feature, so I think it's nice that LFS' engine has that functionality added to it as well in DX9, plus it allows for more intricate repeated geometry instead of alpha textures.

As long as it slows down the release of any future content, everything is well and good.
Quote from wildstyle :
Quote from dawesdust_12 :It's an important addition to the engine. DX10 added it as a library feature, so I think it's nice that LFS' engine has that functionality added to it as well in DX9, plus it allows for more intricate repeated geometry instead of alpha textures.

As long as it slows down the release of any future content, everything is well and good.

Well, unlike other sims, LFS has a very old game engine at its core so it makes sense that features to engine do take priority over content. 10+ years of code debt is nothing to joke about, and with such a small team, things can only work in serial, not parallel. Content does sometimes need to get put on hold to make important engine changes.
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Westhill Progress (November)
(950 posts, closed, started )
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