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View Full Version : Interesting information on maps in FB.



Bearcat99
09-19-2004, 09:02 PM
The following is the first post in this (http://www.simhq.com/simhq3/sims/boards/bbs/ultimatebb.php?ubb=get_topic;f=98;t=012510) thread over at Sim HQ. I thought it was interesting so I am posting it here.

Ian Boys
posted 09-16-2004 15:05
Hi all,

I get lots of questions about this (including in another current thread) and seem to answer them more than once, so in an effort to have a thread that I can just link to in future, here is a summary:

There are three main stages to map design:

1) Photoshop stage - two maps are produced, of different dimensions and settings and requirements (blurred vs straight edge, grayscale vs RGB etc) that in their various layers and channels give water features, roads/rail, towns, villages, forests, altitude etc. However all of these except water are rough outlines.

In addition any new ground textures can be produced in photoshop at this stage.

2) Map tool work - very complex - lots of conflicting requirements. Almost every road needs to be relaid, woods need to change from straight-edged boxes to natural-looking, towns need to be brought down to the water's edge, altitude needs reworking, esp. at airbases and bridges. Loads and loads of work. Then there needs to be co-operation with Moscow to arrange the 2D map and other things that are complex. Also lots of other things like daylight behaviour, temperature, water surface behaviour etc etc. There is little documentation, the little there is is in Russian and just building 1 new kind of airbase (for which there is no documentation) can take 100+ hours to test properly. To give an example of the complexity - there are several mistakes in the Murmansk airbases' AI behaviour and since finishing that map I've learnt a lot more about airbase AI and designed a new workaround that solves 1 main problem but causes another. Having said that, unless you try really hard to break them, you'll probably never notice these issues at all.

3) DGen/NGen/History - concurrent to some degree with the other stages: who flew there, what did the airbases look like, read pilots' accounts, sort out mission types and planes distribution data, talk to virtual squadrons who know about their real life counterparts and may have collected useful data (thanks JG5 Jerry!). Get MIS and DB files made and tested.

-------------------------

The way I'm going at the moment with the new map is to get help with stages 1 and 3. The new map has preliminary maps created by a third-party "outside" source and will almost certainly have DGen files with a large "outside" contribution. There will be new terrain tiles from "outside" and lots of other things.

Stage 2 can't really be farmed out. There are just three people/teams allowed to work with the tool because of the load it places on the guys in Moscow, who have lots of other things to do. Even then, the third team was only accepted on condition that I act as technical advisor and take 80+% of the burden off Moscow.

Lots of things are happening, maybe slowly, but please accept that Oleg does know what he's doing in this area.

OK, can't think of anything else. Anyone reckon they can do decent terrain tiles please PM me I've only found one person so far who is any good at it.

Ian

<UL TYPE=SQUARE>http://www.jodavidsmeyer.com/combat/bookstore/tuskegeebondposter.jpg (http://www.tuskegeeairmen.org)[/list]<UL TYPE=SQUARE>vflyer@comcast.net [/list]<UL TYPE=SQUARE>99thPursuit Squadron IL2 Forgotten Battles (http://www.geocities.com/rt_bearcat)[/list]
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IMMERSION BABY!!

Bearcat99
09-19-2004, 09:02 PM
The following is the first post in this (http://www.simhq.com/simhq3/sims/boards/bbs/ultimatebb.php?ubb=get_topic;f=98;t=012510) thread over at Sim HQ. I thought it was interesting so I am posting it here.

Ian Boys
posted 09-16-2004 15:05
Hi all,

I get lots of questions about this (including in another current thread) and seem to answer them more than once, so in an effort to have a thread that I can just link to in future, here is a summary:

There are three main stages to map design:

1) Photoshop stage - two maps are produced, of different dimensions and settings and requirements (blurred vs straight edge, grayscale vs RGB etc) that in their various layers and channels give water features, roads/rail, towns, villages, forests, altitude etc. However all of these except water are rough outlines.

In addition any new ground textures can be produced in photoshop at this stage.

2) Map tool work - very complex - lots of conflicting requirements. Almost every road needs to be relaid, woods need to change from straight-edged boxes to natural-looking, towns need to be brought down to the water's edge, altitude needs reworking, esp. at airbases and bridges. Loads and loads of work. Then there needs to be co-operation with Moscow to arrange the 2D map and other things that are complex. Also lots of other things like daylight behaviour, temperature, water surface behaviour etc etc. There is little documentation, the little there is is in Russian and just building 1 new kind of airbase (for which there is no documentation) can take 100+ hours to test properly. To give an example of the complexity - there are several mistakes in the Murmansk airbases' AI behaviour and since finishing that map I've learnt a lot more about airbase AI and designed a new workaround that solves 1 main problem but causes another. Having said that, unless you try really hard to break them, you'll probably never notice these issues at all.

3) DGen/NGen/History - concurrent to some degree with the other stages: who flew there, what did the airbases look like, read pilots' accounts, sort out mission types and planes distribution data, talk to virtual squadrons who know about their real life counterparts and may have collected useful data (thanks JG5 Jerry!). Get MIS and DB files made and tested.

-------------------------

The way I'm going at the moment with the new map is to get help with stages 1 and 3. The new map has preliminary maps created by a third-party "outside" source and will almost certainly have DGen files with a large "outside" contribution. There will be new terrain tiles from "outside" and lots of other things.

Stage 2 can't really be farmed out. There are just three people/teams allowed to work with the tool because of the load it places on the guys in Moscow, who have lots of other things to do. Even then, the third team was only accepted on condition that I act as technical advisor and take 80+% of the burden off Moscow.

Lots of things are happening, maybe slowly, but please accept that Oleg does know what he's doing in this area.

OK, can't think of anything else. Anyone reckon they can do decent terrain tiles please PM me I've only found one person so far who is any good at it.

Ian

<UL TYPE=SQUARE>http://www.jodavidsmeyer.com/combat/bookstore/tuskegeebondposter.jpg (http://www.tuskegeeairmen.org)[/list]<UL TYPE=SQUARE>vflyer@comcast.net [/list]<UL TYPE=SQUARE>99thPursuit Squadron IL2 Forgotten Battles (http://www.geocities.com/rt_bearcat)[/list]
Sturmovik Essentials (http://forums.ubi.com/eve/forums?a=tpc&s=400102&f=23110283&m=51910959)
IMMERSION BABY!!

Friendly_flyer
09-20-2004, 01:30 AM
I read the thread over at Sim HQ. We may have autumn and spring maps! Hurra!

Fly friendly!

Petter B├┬Şckman
Norway

HansKnappstick
09-20-2004, 07:03 AM
Does that mean that they just scan the maps for FB from the real maps? How come that they are just plain wrong in some cases then? For example, try to find the river Oder in the Berlin area map.

Tully__
09-20-2004, 07:27 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by HansKnappstick:
Does that mean that they just scan the maps for FB from the real maps?<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

No, it means that two carefully assembled and specially coded image files are used as a template to generate the basic terrain structure (somewhat similar to the image file based terrain in the Radiant group of map tools for Quake engined shooters). Once the basic terrain is generated there are thousands of hours work involved in tuning the result to eliminate oddities resulting from the automatic generation, adding roads and railway tracks, placing houses and such to make up towns and tweaking airfield surfaces. This will also include changing properties attached to the terrain. These properties are used by the game engine to determine object ground behaviour (example: smooth runways, "rough" off airfields) and carefull choice of textures for special applications (see the comments regarding adjusting the edges of forests to look naturally rounded).

Edit: BTW, the Oder is there, it runs straight through Frankfurt an der Oder just like it should....

=================================================


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Salut
Tully

[This message was edited by Tully__ on Mon September 20 2004 at 07:04 AM.]

Extreme_One
09-20-2004, 08:33 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Tully__:
...
Edit: BTW, the Oder is there, it runs straight through Frankfurt an der Oder just like it should....

...<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Just what I was thinking.

S! Simon
'''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''' '''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''' '''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''' '''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''' '''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''' '''''

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Platypus_1.JaVA
09-20-2004, 08:46 AM
Il-2 FB is really advanced I can tell ya...

Even the Airbases in the game as AI http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/images/smiley/16x16_smiley-surprised.gif http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/images/smiley/10.gif

1 Judge not, that ye be not judged.
2 For with what judgment ye judge,
ye shall be judged: and with what
measure ye mete, it shall be measured
to you again.


Placed 3rd, with team, in the official european championship Il-2/FB

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plumps_
09-20-2004, 10:52 AM
The Oder may be there, but Potsdam is missing. The town that has written 'Potsdam' next to it on the map is Werder an der Havel. At the banks of the lakes where Potsdam should be you'll find nothing but meadows. Also Eisenh├╝ttenstadt is on the map but it's a new town that was only founded after the war.

-----------------------------------
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Dunkelgrun
09-20-2004, 12:10 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by plumps_:
The Oder may be there, but Potsdam is missing. The town that has written 'Potsdam' next to it on the map is Werder an der Havel. At the banks of the lakes where Potsdam should be you'll find nothing but meadows. Also Eisenh├╝ttenstadt is on the map but it's a new town that was only founded after the war.

-----------------------------------
http://home.arcor.de/rayluck/sturmovik/
http://home.arcor.de/rayluck/sturmovik/missionen-en.html
<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Whatever you do Plumps, don't look at Stalingrad. More than enough there to make a historian or cartographer cry.
http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/images/smiley/cry.gif
And I'm both. Amateur in one, professional in the other. http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/images/smiley/cry.gif http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/images/smiley/cry.gif

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Hawk_9th
09-20-2004, 01:25 PM
Thinks for the intersting info bear . Yall boys make me worry though , landmarks??? who uses them , give me a compass and a clock , when they say im over the target area then ill start looking at the ground so i can set my bomb site lol.

http://www.lordsofwar.com/public_uploads/Bloodfist/hawksig.jpg

k5054
09-20-2004, 03:13 PM
Platypus, love your sig, Douglas 8A, right?
I am not holding my breath to see this in AEP, but it's not too far from the SBD????????