Fast, photo-realistic maps

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Re: Fast, photo-realistic maps

Postby Von_B » Tue Aug 29, 2006 11:47 pm

3 against, 1 for so far...

Might be interesting to try one out and see what the reaction is. When I look at the Units displayed on Hooligan's sample, I can't see what all the fuss is about. I still think the terrain textures are better on the pic based than the hand drawn, but we are all entitled to our own opinions :)

More opinions please...
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Re: Fast, photo-realistic maps

Postby pfc.Michael » Wed Aug 30, 2006 12:35 am

I like it

It's just unfortunate that the entire game needs to be changed to make it work.Keeping the current configuration would be cartoonish but updating "EVERYTHING" would probably be a very nice game.
animosity242 has a good idea with tanks.

Now just where to get all those images from WWII tanks/vehicles.
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Re: Fast, photo-realistic maps

Postby animosity242 » Wed Aug 30, 2006 1:55 pm

pfc.Michael wrote:Now just where to get all those images from WWII tanks/vehicles.


Use models or go to Aberdeen Proving Grounds in MD, USA. What a wonderous place APG is. :D It's all a CC'er ever needs. In fact, its like Disney World. Ahhhh........
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Re: Fast, photo-realistic maps

Postby JimRM2 » Wed Aug 30, 2006 4:33 pm

IMHO the colors are too washed out on the aerials but that's a matter of preference. Plus it leaves no options for modding historical events... unless you combine artwork with photos. That's just lame. You'd be stuck with how things look today.

On topic: Consistency is key! I would object to the use of aerials as maps as a customer of RTS games UNLESS the entire game used graphics of real objects as well. i.e. aerial views of humans, aerial views of vehicles, aerial views of explosions, aerial views of smoke. And all converted to animations within the game.

Just my opinion. Otherwise I'd have a tendency to think the product I was buying was being shortcut somehow for the sake of profits. I feel hand drawn artwork PLUS all the top notch features are an absolute necessity. I'd be willing to pay an extra $20 a copy to have both.
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Re: Fast, photo-realistic maps

Postby CSO Colonel Olorin » Thu Aug 31, 2006 3:32 pm

i think the real easy way to tell if it's a good idea or not. how many game companie are releasing games these days with maps taken as direct copies of aerial/lansat images?
the amount of work needed to use an image like this in game and get it looking realistic(ie cutting up tree's and underlaying them with the corrct ground cover, making photorealistic building interiors, removing eroneous things like the farmer shagging his sheep in the bottom corner) it's be quicker to make a map the current way
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Re: Fast, photo-realistic maps

Postby JimRM2 » Thu Aug 31, 2006 4:38 pm

lol NICE! Crude but sadly true however. i.e. farmer. Akin to my point about not being able to make historically accurate maps in the same method since images of a quality comparable to todays standards didn't exist then. There'd have to be a provision to still allow the use of hand drawn maps for any consumer level product. Obviously TDS's are a completely different animal. Lower GUI standards required there.

What format is elevation data in? How do you make a file like that? TXT? Some proprietary format? Would making the game moddable require a conversion tool for elevation data? Would we be allowed to enact a provision to tear the roof off of every home of the target map area to get a good aerial shot of interiors? Ok now I'm being silly. But lack of being able to use real photos of interiors removes the possiblity of consistency. I for one don't like the idea of my units hanging out on the roof of a house. Or not being able to see their disposition. i.e. location of actual sprites.
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Re: Fast, photo-realistic maps

Postby flamethrower » Thu Aug 31, 2006 11:55 pm

I thought the idea from Animosity242 in this thread about the use of top down photos of models for mods to be pretty interesting but then I'm not a modder.
Of course the turrets would have to be shot separately but all 1/35 scale Tamiya armor models have removeable turrets. Would the photography and touch up work in Photoshop to get the image enhancements right for the downsized images save time over building the armor with CG? Dumb question? The concept of incorporating more realism in the armor and AFVs with the use of models might make more sense practically than the photo map idea by the sound of problems there.
There are a lot of modellers whose work w/airbrush is over the top and they would probably get a kick out of seeing their models incorporated in a computer game if it did make any sense for the modder.
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Re: Fast, photo-realistic maps

Postby Von_B » Mon Sep 04, 2006 5:13 pm

Old habits can die hard, and entrenched ways can be difficult to dig out. There is a qualitative 'beauty' to a well drawn Map, but that's not necessarily the biggest issue. Ther is also an 'image' issue, and CC has a strong relational link to the hand drawn Maps. They 'feel' CC.

For a number of reasons, this topic is not going to go away, and I will follow it with interest.

What is the most important issue? To me, it's gameplay. It does not matter so much what anyone thinks about the relative pro's and con's of a Map, but how the game plays, i.e. the balance would be that compelling game play on a photo resloved Map would always be superior to uncompelling gamplay on a hand drawn Map. With the current iterations of CC, there does not seem to be any significant pressure to change the methodology. It works, and the gamplay is compelling. Creating photo resolved Maps will perhaps not change this.

I think the crunch is going to come with much larger areas. Hand drawn could be just impractical? Try and draw a 3x3km Map by hand... or larger...

btw, if anyone is able to create such a monster which works, I will be VERY INTERESTED in talking to them.... and some...
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Re: Fast, photo-realistic maps

Postby TTorpedo » Mon Sep 04, 2006 8:49 pm

I’ve been toying around whid a 3d program “Vue” from e-on. And this are the first results; the 2d it’s jpg crop down image of 2000 pixels - the original is a 4000 x 4000 pixel image - so only half the map is dispalyed here (i couldnt upload the bigger one 4,12 mb)
Its an untouched images, directly out of the program.
The program allows the integration of effects like fog and rain (as stated on the manual) and can be zoomed until you see the leafs of a tree. Its also possible to make a map from a DEM image.
Basically is a good texture topography modelling tool, the output image needs work of course, trees do look superb but wouldn’t fit CC - Is there a way to add new elements do the game engine?

Maybe Sintek would want to check it out under the CC6 ideas phase.
The actual size its not a problem an image of the model terrain of any givem pixels its possible. This one (5000pixels) took 3 hours to render on my computer (a 1.5 year hold laptop).
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Re: Fast, photo-realistic maps

Postby TTorpedo » Mon Sep 04, 2006 8:56 pm

This are some 3D views of the all thing.
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Re: Fast, photo-realistic maps

Postby Southern_land » Mon Sep 04, 2006 9:12 pm

Very cool, don't suppose the software is shareware :D
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Re: Fast, photo-realistic maps

Postby yukongold » Mon Sep 04, 2006 9:19 pm

CSO Beeblebrox, a 3km by 3km map is certainly within the realm of possibilities, a 1:50,000 projection is roughly 13km by 13km......coding it would be a daunting task though......
TTorpedo.......hey that looks good.........
I posted a small tutorial for using a similar progam back in the spring and have a few CC III maps done using that method.
http://www.closecombat.org/forums/showthread.php?t=9672&highlight=mountain+map
.....would love to share some ideas on the method involved
Cheers! :)
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Re: Fast, photo-realistic maps

Postby philip_wells » Tue Sep 05, 2006 1:27 am

I think we better have some of our sprites trained in mountian climbing
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Re: Fast, photo-realistic maps

Postby Von_B » Tue Sep 05, 2006 2:05 am

a 3km by 3km map is certainly within the realm of possibilities
We are studying this seriously at the moment. We have been asked to look at this in particular, but have some doubts how practicable it is.

We think it's possible, but are not convinced (yet) it's practicable. If anyone has any contributions to this, then we'd love to hear about it :)
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Re: Fast, photo-realistic maps

Postby G.Mooyman » Tue Sep 05, 2006 2:19 am

Cant be bothered with the photo realistic maps. Although I think the technique can be very well used by good artists.
Im far more interested in TTorpedo's version. That looks pretty cool! In the hands of an experienced CC mapper we could see some very stunning maps.
Same goes with the 3DEM technique, but I doubt you can find the right scales of certain maps - imo maps in 1:10000 scale arnt good enough.
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