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FlatSpinMan
09-02-2009, 09:24 AM
Hi there,
Having been playing a spot of RoF recently with its glorious (but demanding ) high-res planes, I am curious how Oleg is going to pull of a real Battle of Britain scenario on a normal PC, given the stunningly high level of detail we have seen on WIP aircraft, object and ground shots.

I recall having read that there won't be the ability to switch the camera to focus on enemy planes (or something like that) so that they can simplify the appearance and system demands of the enemy formations. Does anyone else remember this, or can confirm/dey it?

If SOW:BOB comes out like RoF where you can currently have about 5 beautifully portrayed planes in a mission without needing a high spec PC, it'll be a travesty. The Battle of Britain without hordes of German bombers and fighters would be wholly indequate. If it was another theatre being modelled I could accept small numbers of aircraft but since they chose BOB they HAVE to have large flotillas present.

Does anyone have any ideas or info how/if they will achieve this?

Wildnoob
09-02-2009, 09:49 AM
hello mister FlatSpinMan!

well, Battle of Britain II can hold 800 aicraft in a single mission, thefore don't think would be impossible to SOW witch would be far more modern but also complex.

would risk to say it seems possible, despite BOB II is a offline sim. guess the problem would be the online mode, but we can expect naturally more huge orders of planes, though I have the same thougth as you, BOB reconstitution in a sim with huge quantity of aircraft is vital.

would like to ask anyone who understand game modeling please, how difficult do this in a very complex game would be, in tecnical terms of course?

Pigeon_
09-02-2009, 05:14 PM
I don't think you should plan running BOB on a "normal PC"... http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_frown.gif

X32Wright
09-02-2009, 05:46 PM
it is possible with LOD (level of details) and hopefully using vertices instead of polygons for some of the LOD. This is because the GPU's now handle vertex information better than polygons.

WTE_Galway
09-02-2009, 05:53 PM
Its nothing to do with graphics ... its an AI issue.

Oleg discussed this at length with regard to IL2 several years back.

The issue in IL2 is the decision was made to give every single AI plane in a formation its own separate flight controls and AI flight.

Other sims at the time would have entire squadrons controlled by the same AI, especially at a distance from the players plane.

The ADVANTAGE of the IL2 method - much more realistic bomber formations that look relatively realistic even just when viewed externally from a distance.

The DISADVANTAGE huge frame rate killer with massed bombers in the air, even on very fast machines.



-- I have no idea which way he went with SOW as I have not been following or reading the SOW updates.

stalkervision
09-02-2009, 07:01 PM
Originally posted by FlatSpinMan:
Hi there,
Having been playing a spot of RoF recently with its glorious (but demanding ) high-res planes, I am curious how Oleg is going to pull of a real Battle of Britain scenario on a normal PC, given the stunningly high level of detail we have seen on WIP aircraft, object and ground shots.

I recall having read that there won't be the ability to switch the camera to focus on enemy planes (or something like that) so that they can simplify the appearance and system demands of the enemy formations. Does anyone else remember this, or can confirm/dey it?

If SOW:BOB comes out like RoF where you can currently have about 5 beautifully portrayed planes in a mission without needing a high spec PC, it'll be a travesty. The Battle of Britain without hordes of German bombers and fighters would be wholly indequate. If it was another theatre being modelled I could accept small numbers of aircraft but since they chose BOB they HAVE to have large flotillas present.

Does anyone have any ideas or info how/if they will achieve this?


I wonder how the hell he is too given the detail! http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_eek.gif http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

I also agree about the aircraft numbers.

FlatSpinMan
09-03-2009, 09:25 AM
I guess if it is an AI issue, as WTE_Galway said, then it could be solved like the massed formations in the Total War series. In that series you have enormousgroups of men running about all operating as ONE UNIT. That would certainly reduce the load on the PC. Like TW, you could then allow the option of allowing "randomness" in a formation of identical aircraft to give some semblance of them being piloted by humans. You know - a plane lagging here, some variation in height in a formation, especially one that has been shot up..

But still, once the cry of Tallyho has been sounded, surely individual AI has to take over? I suppose that the number of aircraft in the immediate vicinity of the player will be smaller than the entire fleet.

Interesting to think about. Let's hope he comes up with a good solution.

Lt_Letum
09-03-2009, 09:34 AM
Originally posted by X32Wright:
it is possible with LOD (level of details) and hopefully using vertices instead of polygons for some of the LOD. This is because the GPU's now handle vertex information better than polygons.


What?!
You can't see a vertex. A vertex has no sides.
A polygon is made up of 3 or more connected vertices.

You can't use vertices instead of polygons.
It's like having corners without triangles.

TheFamilyMan
09-03-2009, 09:49 AM
For this reason (LOTS of AI), I hope the SoW:BoB developers are savvy with designing and programming for multiprocessor threading. Done correctly and those 8 core CPUs coming out should own SoW:BoB. 16 cores, anyone?

WTE_Galway
09-03-2009, 10:07 AM
Originally posted by FlatSpinMan:
I guess if it is an AI issue, as WTE_Galway said, then it could be solved like the massed formations in the Total War series. In that series you have enormousgroups of men running about all operating as ONE UNIT. That would certainly reduce the load on the PC. Like TW, you could then allow the option of allowing "randomness" in a formation of identical aircraft to give some semblance of them being piloted by humans. You know - a plane lagging here, some variation in height in a formation, especially one that has been shot up..

But still, once the cry of Tallyho has been sounded, surely individual AI has to take over? I suppose that the number of aircraft in the immediate vicinity of the player will be smaller than the entire fleet.

Interesting to think about. Let's hope he comes up with a good solution.

This is what the man himself had to say:


http://www.simhq.com/_air6/air_218a.html


Interview with Oleg Maddox:
Q9. One of the biggest draws to games like European Air War and the Rowan/Shockwave Battle of Britain was the large bomber formations that players could see in the game. Do you plan on having large aircraft formations rendered in this game and if you do what do you plan on doing to balance this with the obvious system slowdowns this may cause?


OLEG:
In Il-2 series is also possible 1000+ bombers at once. Some users even make such missions where in air is 700+ aircraft and on the ground is 1200+ tanks, cars, 600,000 buildings, etc… And if you'll compare the AI, the work of aircraft engines modeling, and all previously described to the named above sims, you'll may find that it will be too slow running. Main FPS eater in Il-2 series for such a case was AI and modeling of each AI aircraft engine behavior like the player aircraft. Al planes are fair, the same as user, comparing to the simple programs of EAW and Rowan/Shockwave BoB.
In our BoB we plan to get possible large amount of aircraft flying in action, however for this we will need to use some smart technology that will decrease the level of AI behavior realism on some distance to the user aircraft. This isn't easy task in programming, because fans ask to have large amount with the incredible quality of Aircraft, AI, modeling of physics for each stand alone object in air, including all flights to target of each bullet and shell…. Hope you understand what I mean. The other limit is our features with track recording…. Probably we will prohibit to switch camera to the other long distance areas after the track was recorded, because of described above problem of realism modeling :. You know, all ask for realism and then do not understand what we will pay for it.

stalkervision
09-03-2009, 10:40 AM
Originally posted by FlatSpinMan:
I guess if it is an AI issue, as WTE_Galway said, then it could be solved like the massed formations in the Total War series. In that series you have enormousgroups of men running about all operating as ONE UNIT. That would certainly reduce the load on the PC. Like TW, you could then allow the option of allowing "randomness" in a formation of identical aircraft to give some semblance of them being piloted by humans. You know - a plane lagging here, some variation in height in a formation, especially one that has been shot up..

But still, once the cry of Tallyho has been sounded, surely individual AI has to take over? I suppose that the number of aircraft in the immediate vicinity of the player will be smaller than the entire fleet.

Interesting to think about. Let's hope he comes up with a good solution.

yes, of course the Ai has to take over and they have to be realistic actions too.

In Bob/wov one can set the ai for simpler maneuvers. This is probably to speed up a slow system.

The ai in it with hundreds of aircraft is outstanding but drags down the frame rates a bit. Damn I wish I had a much better computer to speed it up far more. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-sad.gif

I was just thinking in BOB/WOV if one sets the squadrons to all the same type of aircraft skins the game works immeasurably faster. Wonder if Oleg will resort to this.

I hate having all the squadrons look pretty much the same. http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_razz.gif Never use it or the simpler Ai. In fact with the new patch the He-111> Dornier and Stuka squadrons will be even more differentiated then before.


Oleg statement is kinda funny with the 1000 bomber and fighters for il-2. The game would be totally unusable and just a slide show doing that with Il-2. Already when you get to detailed towns the frame rates take a MAJOR HIT. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-wink.gif

X32Wright
09-03-2009, 10:56 AM
What?!
You can't see a vertex. A vertex has no sides.
A polygon is made up of 3 or more connected vertices.

You can't use vertices instead of polygons.
It's like having corners without triangles.

You are wrong:

http://www.nvidia.com/object/f...re_vertexshader.html (http://www.nvidia.com/object/feature_vertexshader.html)

http://www.nvidia.com/attach/4049

http://developer.nvidia.com/attach/6690

http://developer.nvidia.com/attach/6543

http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-u...bb205146(VS.85).aspx (http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/bb205146(VS.85).aspx)

Vertex shader now can use 'procedural shaders' too (includign displacement maps) using Cg language and other effects that are not needing polygon deformation either by 'bones' animation or by LOD or other effects. Vertex shading is also now used for 'texture mappping' as well without needing to do 'Atlas maps' using XYZ 'unwrap mode'. Animation on polygon meshes are a lot more expensive computationally so this is being phased out for 'real time rendering' displays like in a video card. 'Control cage' are now used for animation. This is in the DX 11 specification.

Have you actually seen OpenGl 3.0 specs as well? The quads and polygon primitive support are now 'DEPRECATED' feature. The use of 'pure polygons' and applying 'texture map' to that and using it for final renders is becoming a thing of the past. Vertex shaders dont work on primitives at all and support even a single vertex.

Finally 'vertices' or vertex are indeed can be seen now. The 'vertex shading' (display mode) on 3DS max and Maya when modeling are now supported as well in game engines as well as GPU routines. So you can indeed 'see' a vertex.

buddye1
09-03-2009, 11:51 AM
Very interesting problem showing very large formations fo AI A/C.

Here is a short BOBII video showing the 100's of AI a/c for our new version 2.10 (sorry for the video as I could not find a pic).

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q0hMcU5SoHc

I agree with Oleg in that the control of the AI is the big issue and not just the graphics. The AI control must be implemented so the large formations at a distance are cheaper (processor and video card) to control Performance wise. The distance is the key. Of course, all sim's must control each AI for close distance and dog fighting.

It is a very complex implementation and I am sure Oleg understands the issues. ROF just does simple dog fight control for each A/C. Rof is not set up to show major formations of AI, IMHO, as ROF is not a WWI simulation but just a WWI fight sim.

I hope SOW simulates the BOB.

Tully__
09-04-2009, 10:47 PM
Originally posted by buddye1:
Of course, all sim's must control each AI for close distance and dog fighting
Not necessarily, EAW didn't for level bomber formations. The end result was if you damaged an aircraft in a bomber formation the whole formation would gradually lose altitude and/or speed. This would go on until a certain threshold was reached at which point the damaged aircraft would get its own AI and the rest of the formation would go back to flying as though undamaged.

On the whole it worked fairly well, except for the cases where the damage was not high enough to severely affect performance, so the limiting threshold was terrain clearance. You'd get a whole formation slowly descend from 25,000 feet down to a couple of hundred feet because a single aircraft in the formation was unable to maintain altitude. At the trigger altitude the damaged aircraft would drop out of formation and the rest of the formation would slowly climb back to whatever their programmed altitude was.

buddye1
09-05-2009, 12:25 PM
Originally posted by Tully__:

Not necessarily, EAW didn't for level bomber formations. The end result was if you damaged an aircraft in a bomber formation the whole formation would gradually lose altitude and/or speed. This would go on until a certain threshold was reached at which point the damaged aircraft would get its own AI and the rest of the formation would go back to flying as though undamaged.

On the whole it worked fairly well, except for the cases where the damage was not high enough to severely affect performance, so the limiting threshold was terrain clearance. You'd get a whole formation slowly descend from 25,000 feet down to a couple of hundred feet because a single aircraft in the formation was unable to maintain altitude. At the trigger altitude the damaged aircraft would drop out of formation and the rest of the formation would slowly climb back to whatever their programmed altitude was.

Very interesting implementation and trade off for EAW's level bomber formations. I would have never thought of that one. I guess the idea's for managing large formations with a reasonable performance cost are about endless.

The EAW approach would limit the management of individual bombers (stragglers,engine fires, death, falling out of formation, crew bail out, etc), I guess.

jarink
09-05-2009, 03:53 PM
Originally posted by Tully__:
Not necessarily, EAW didn't for level bomber formations. The end result was if you damaged an aircraft in a bomber formation the whole formation would gradually lose altitude and/or speed. This would go on until a certain threshold was reached at which point the damaged aircraft would get its own AI and the rest of the formation would go back to flying as though undamaged.

On the whole it worked fairly well, except for the cases where the damage was not high enough to severely affect performance, so the limiting threshold was terrain clearance. You'd get a whole formation slowly descend from 25,000 feet down to a couple of hundred feet because a single aircraft in the formation was unable to maintain altitude. At the trigger altitude the damaged aircraft would drop out of formation and the rest of the formation would slowly climb back to whatever their programmed altitude was.

I wonder why they didn't just trigger a separate AI for the damaged plane as soon as it was damaged or reached some threshold of damage (where the damage would affect flight performance)?

To me, this would be an acceptable solution for SoW/BoB.

However, this solution may fall apart when bombers are taking off/joining formation or landing. Maybe separate the AIs unless the plane is considered to be in a formation?

Tully__
09-05-2009, 04:43 PM
Originally posted by jarink:
I wonder why <EAW> didn't just trigger a separate AI for the damaged plane as soon as it...reached some threshold of damage (where the damage would affect flight performance)?
They did, there were a number of triggers. If the aircraft was losing altitude too fast or the maximum speed it could maintain got too low it would break out of formation and get its own AI, and some forms of damage would do it too. Also you could sometimes trigger it by forcing another AI to break through the formation box triggering the air to air clearance threshold. It's just that in some cases the damage was not quite enough to reach threshold on those triggers and they would drag the whole formation down to ground level before the terrain clearance threshold forced the rest of the formation to break off and leave the damaged aircraft to their own devices.