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Re: Friday, May 5, 2017

#16
I see zero to complain about here, plenty that's satisfying, and much that's exciting.

Visuals: looking good! Did you other folks look closely at the beams? Look at the care that Josh put into them: they aren't just straight lines; they coruscate. There's even a shaded glow effect "surrounding" the beam. This attention to detail takes time, but it's also part of what makes Josh's work so jaw-droppingly gorgeous.

I want to add my praise as well to the main site redesign. Very nice work, Tal -- thank you.

Also, this:
JoshParnell wrote:I forgot to put a range cap on the beams...yikes... :ghost:
:lol:

Hey, it's hard to think of every detail in advance when you're creating a universe....
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Re: Friday, May 5, 2017

#18
Flatfingers wrote:Did you other folks look closely at the beams? Look at the care that Josh put into them: they aren't just straight lines
I noticed, and I appreciated that some work had gone into doing that, but I believe I would prefer them to be straight lines. The current effect makes the beams look... inefficient. Hard to say for sure without seeing it in motion, though. And it's a first pass in any case, so I'm not at all bothered. Whatever the final version is, I'm sure it'll look good in the game.
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Re: Friday, May 5, 2017

#19
JoshParnell wrote:Upon finally having this option available to me, I was able to acquire detailed information about the JIT part of LuaJIT ... the short story is: LJ is currently helping me very little compared to what it could be doing ... Clearly, it is not nearly as 'flexible' as I had thought. There are certain very basic things that cause LJ to abort potential optimizations.
Once you've had time to properly evaluate this situation, it will be interesting to know what the ramifications are for modding. In particular, whether mod developers will simply need to know exactly what they mustn't do in lua if compilation is to remain enabled, or if there might be tools to assist them in avoiding such pitfalls. Maybe the same debug logging you've utilised here will be sufficient. What is the granularity of the compile/no-compile decision? If compilation is aborted, does that affect a single file only? Can it potentially affect other code as well?
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Re: Friday, May 5, 2017

#20
Not sure if anyone else noticed this, but I absolutely love the 'noise' on the space lasers. Makes them feel like the product of a chaotic unstable process. Now if only we had ThymineC to make up some pseudoscience to explain it. Oh well, we must often banish the good with the bad through our decisions. If only we could choose. :monkey: Image Image
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Re: Friday, May 5, 2017

#22
@Flatfingers and others regarding the beams - thanks! Glad you guys like them. @Employee - I don't think they look great in screenshots, you really do need to see the animation part. The beam basically decoheres and fades out over a second or two after it's fired. The noise effect becomes more obvious over the period. So one gets the impression of a short-lived, coherent beam being projected and then quickly losing stability. I like non-noisy beams too...so maybe we just have the 'noisiness' be a scalable attribute that correlates with some property of the weapon.
Employee 2-4601 wrote:Once you've had time to properly evaluate this situation, it will be interesting to know what the ramifications are for modding. In particular, whether mod developers will simply need to know exactly what they mustn't do in lua if compilation is to remain enabled, or if there might be tools to assist them in avoiding such pitfalls. Maybe the same debug logging you've utilised here will be sufficient. What is the granularity of the compile/no-compile decision? If compilation is aborted, does that affect a single file only? Can it potentially affect other code as well?
That's a good question. I think it will fall more on me, and probably isn't something modders will need to worry about. Most of the places that cause trouble are where Lua and C try to talk to one another (i.e., through my API). So it's on me to build an API that lends itself to LJ optimization.

It is difficult to understand the granularity without understanding tracing JITs, which are difficult to understand in the first place, because they are not like what you might think of as a 'normal' compiler: they don't look at code in terms of how the programmer has written it. They look at code in terms of how it is being executed, and perform analysis on execution flow to determine if specific 'traces' (paths of code that are frequently-executed, but don't necessarily align with function boundaries or loop bodies, etc. -- both the beauty and the weirdness of a tracing JIT) can be compiled to machine code. So the answer is 'it depends,' sometimes a trace may span multiple functions across multiple files, whereas sometimes it may span only a tiny portion of a single function. Within a trace, any 'bad' operation will cause an abort of the entire trace, if my understanding of LJ is correct. So the decision is all-or-nothing, but at the level of a trace, which, again, is difficult to put a scope on.

At any rate, you guys will have equal access to the LJ debug tools that I have. But again, hopefully it won't be something that modders need worry about.
kostuek wrote::wave: Just out of interest: if you had to identify 3 most basic/urgent features/mechanics to add to the demo next, wich 3 would it be?
Also: nice screenshots :thumbup:
Most basic/urgent:
- An actual HUD (also some better indicators of target distance/velocity, and, most importantly, faction....right now your HUD doesn't tell you whether you're shooting at an enemy or not :P )
- Collision detection.
- Sound.

But note that I have answered the question you asked: which are the most basic/urgent. This does not necessarily correspond to what I will be implementing first :) (there is no showing coming up so no real urgency other than the usual "finish Limit Theory"!) The HUD though really is a priority.
“Whether you think you can, or you think you can't--you're right.” ~ Henry Ford
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Re: Friday, May 5, 2017

#23
Everything is looking great Josh, great work!

I was looking at the photos and noticed how similar this photo looks to the Rogue Shadow from the force unleashed series...
Image Image Or maybe just a little bit haha. The beams looks really great as well. Good luck at the demo.
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Re: Friday, May 5, 2017

#24
Great work Josh! Love the lasers. :clap:

HUD:

Indicators for target distance/velocity/faction is great!...... but I'd like to have a indicator for SCALE...Just how big is this object?! Maybe a icon https://goo.gl/images/IVVamb (frigate) or this https://goo.gl/images/iK0zZi

Maybe a asteroid icon https://goo.gl/images/s3sd4e scaled and displayed next to something everyone should know? https://goo.gl/images/E2rGZd (Eiffel tower)
Scale.jpg
something I did in Unity
Scale.jpg (60.8 KiB) Viewed 1012 times


I don't know a space game that shares scale. Most give velocity/distance....but I think everyone understands space is vast and objects are far,far away?

Just how large is that asteroid? Or that space station........Stating a crew size would help me. "Crew of five thousand", "Crew of 4"...etc... :think:

Also..........Distance could be a filled icon of Manhattan. "The object is 7.4 Manhattan islands away" *HUD shows 7 Manhattan island icons with a partially filled 8th.* OR...That object is the state of Kentucky away! HUD shows a nearly filled icon (in silhouette)of the state.


Hope I can mod something like that!! :think: :thumbup:
Last edited by RedDwarfMining on Sat May 06, 2017 2:54 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Friday, May 5, 2017

#25
joker wrote:Everything is looking great Josh, great work!

I was looking at the photos and noticed how similar this photo looks to the Rogue Shadow from the force unleashed series...
Spoiler:      SHOW
Image Image
Or maybe just a little bit haha. The beams looks really great as well. Good luck at the demo.
Wow, yeah! I really like the Rogue Shadow's aesthetics. This is just a rough first pass with the ship generation, so it'll probably be refined a lot more by the end... which I'm happy with. :D
Have a question? Send me a PM! || People talking in IRC over the past two hours: Image
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Re: Friday, May 5, 2017

#26
I must say that visuals are stunning and hit me right into that Freelancer nostalgia spot I always have within me :) Especially loved the atmospheric scattering, it's beautiful.

And ships starting to look more like ships and less like bricks, yay :squirrel: :squirrel: :squirrel: :squirrel: I always thought that as soon as sub-system generation is introduced the ships will start looking more like ships (i.e. with parts that make sense, as opposed to weird things on a stick coming straight out of aerospace engineer's worst nightmare :ghost: ), but I'm amazed by how big the change is. And it's just one sub-system, version alpha 0.1 :ghost:
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Re: Friday, May 5, 2017

#27
Talvieno wrote:
joker wrote:Everything is looking great Josh, great work!

I was looking at the photos and noticed how similar this photo looks to the Rogue Shadow from the force unleashed series...
Spoiler:      SHOW
Image Image
Or maybe just a little bit haha. The beams looks really great as well. Good luck at the demo.
Wow, yeah! I really like the Rogue Shadow's aesthetics. This is just a rough first pass with the ship generation, so it'll probably be refined a lot more by the end... which I'm happy with. :D
It kind of reminds me of the Toscan fighter. I look forward to seeing more detailed LT ships, and the day when I can mess with the ship designer.
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Re: Friday, May 5, 2017

#28
Thanks for elaborating on the JIT issues, Josh; I get the gist of the problem now!

Also:
JoshParnell wrote:you really do need to see the animation part. The beam basically decoheres and fades out over a second or two after it's fired. The noise effect becomes more obvious over the period. So one gets the impression of a short-lived, coherent beam being projected and then quickly losing stability.
Ah, that actually sounds pretty neat.
I like non-noisy beams too...so maybe we just have the 'noisiness' be a scalable attribute that correlates with some property of the weapon.
I'm confident that you'll settle on a good-looking approach :)
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Re: Friday, May 5, 2017

#29
RedDwarfMining wrote:Indicators for target distance/velocity/faction is great!...... but I'd like to have a indicator for SCALE...Just how big is this object?!
I like that idea. An exponential scale would be needed to deal with anything from a piece of cargo to the most massive star. At minimum the display could be a simple line on the HUD, but your idea of iconography could be a fun addition:

* Sensors report that the distant object is a space station
* HUD scale icon displays a picture of a moon

"That's no moon!"
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Re: Friday, May 5, 2017

#30
Hi Josh,

Thanks for the updates! Its great to see progress every 10 days or so.

If you are considering adding features to the demo towards 1.0, doesn't that technically mean your demo is actually an Alpha or Pre-Alpha? If so, do you plan on updating/(replacing) the years-old combat prototype for the $75 Prototype(s) Kickstarter Level folks prior to Beta?

(I personally don't have any expectations or access to the Prototypes/Beta, but I would love to see "Let's Plays" with LT eye candy).

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