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Workn'Progress (Read 3712 times)
1st Jan, 2008 at 5:35pm

Chuck Jodry   Offline
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Project Files .
Final bumpmapping is done and the last of the bits are being laid into the master bitmap

Tip of the day : you can change the shade and intensity of the shadows by playing with the blue channel
shade of grey

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Reply #1 - 3rd Jan, 2008 at 7:48am

Chuck Jodry   Offline
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The Holy Grail of FSX design is the crusade to reduce draw calls in new models to totals
that meet or improve upon the default FSX models by MS.

The first time i saw this model onscreen in its original form there were 465 draw calls , after much of the remapping
has been completed the last ( below ) version to be cooked had a 97.5 % reduction in draw calls due to the elimination of all
multimaterials and consolidating much of the texture set onto one 2048x2048 sheet and not reducing the resolution in the process.

Hunting down the last "extraneous" elements and filling the main texture sheet using every trick in the book will hopefully allow
users of this model and new releases from some of the major production houses to maximise frame rates and usability.

The release of SP2 has ensured compatibility with all versions is possible and it is hoped that the market for payware aircraft
will improve as stability and a maturation of production methods allow the simming public to build confidence again that the products
they buy are going to work in their version , perform well , look stunning and have the potential to be enjoyed for years instead of months.

This model like FSX itself is a work in progress , as the Design community untaps the potential of FSX many boundaries have fallen already
among them is model size and with it the possibilities for substantial improvements in details that can be modeled and ground support vehicles
or "eye candy" .
Our own FFDS forum is the place to be for a ring side seat while the Dev's duke it out to see who will be crowned in the heavyweight division,
the bell has sounded at the end of the first round in a scheduled 15 round extravaganza that even Don King could not have imagined.


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Reply #2 - 3rd Jan, 2008 at 2:57pm

Fr. Bill   Offline
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Unless my math is faulty, that 97.5% reduction still means 12-13 drawcalls, which is in line with what I explained to Ron the other day on the phone.  That's a "far cry" from the 1 draw call Lou was "crowing about" the other week in another forum...   Grin

I've just finished remapping a "freeware" Navion for a nice elderly gentleman who's created a fairly nice model, but simply couldn't grasp the principles of UVW Mapping, et cetera.

I mapped all the exterior to a single 2048^ bitmap vs. the original four 1024^ bitmaps.
I compiled the same exterior parts for both and compared them in the sim:

Draw call is down to 1, but the framerates have not changed one iota...  Huh

What concerns me at the moment is that I only have a diffuse texture at the moment for the "new model," but the "old model" has the full-court press applied: diffuse, specular, and bump!

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Fr. Bill
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Reply #3 - 3rd Jan, 2008 at 3:29pm

Chuck Jodry   Offline
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" petter les brottel " or stretching one's suspenders is what that’s called round these parts, regrettable but part of the
game i gather, infact the entire fuse is one draw call and as there is a problem insofar as one can have only
one profile or list of settings per material i felt that the variety of effects in my pallet would be too limited if all there
was left to play with was the alpha channel.
The net result is if you want your glass to have the cockpit reflected inside, the environment outside and chrome that just glistens you gotta spend the GPU cycles, below a certain threshold there is a negligible difference in performance.
The conclusions are none the less sound in spite of the sounding off by our respective patrons , not to cloud the issue
with facts but the first mention of draw calls as propaganda was by ESDG on its website and its likely to be a returning theme in the future .. nes pas ? 
 

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Reply #4 - 3rd Jan, 2008 at 5:16pm

Fr. Bill   Offline
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Quote:
The conclusions are none the less sound in spite of the sounding off by our respective patrons , not to cloud the issue with facts but the first mention of draw calls as propaganda was by ESDG on its website and its likely to be a returning theme in the future .. nes pas ?  


Actually, that mention by Ron was at my suggestion. Given that even the default models, as well as the new Acceleration models have - at most - 14 draw calls, I suggest that is a good "target" for modelers to aim for... Wink

When I first told Ron and Owen about the Twin Comanche's total draw calls, I suggested that it would be a "Good Thing" to let the customers know that Eaglesoft had at least "met the target" with respect to draw calls on this specific model.

Even with less-than-optimum construction on the CII and Liberty XL2 models, which have 23 and 34 draw calls respectively, performance in sim is still excellent...  Cool

What I referenced earlier was the comment Lou made which IMPLIED that the total draw calls for the complete model would be only 1...

...which we both know is simply not possible!  The best any model could have is 2 draw calls (1 exterior, 1 interior), but no moving parts, et cetera... basically a static model...  Roll Eyes
 

Fr. Bill
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Reply #5 - 4th Jan, 2008 at 6:04am

J_MacKay   Offline
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How do you gentlemen determine draw calls? Is it a number measured by software? or is it a matter of math, number of texture sheets used, including all channels used in materials?

When I worked on the WWI sub sim, the programmer (evil, ruthless, taskmaster, bully) insisted that I divide my texture maps based on whether an object was static or animated. Is that the case in FSX as well?
 
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Reply #6 - 4th Jan, 2008 at 6:28am

Chuck Jodry   Offline
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The means of finding out the number of draw calls is with a tool for the job and then open the file in Max
the tool itself has a number of conflicts and problems associated with its use and is little discussed in public.

FSX does require skinned mesh to be on its own material, but not all animated surfaces and controls
put simply the more you can get on that 2048 from your parts list the fewer the draw calls ,
Doing textures as a series for the exterior and making a bunch of multimaterials is out
of consideration for any new aircraft as far as i am concerned
 

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Reply #7 - 4th Jan, 2008 at 11:55pm

generic   Offline
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Quote:
Draw call is down to 1, but the framerates have not changed one iota...  Huh

That's very reasonable because there are always dozens of draw calls for ground, airport, trees, cloud, etc.  Getting from 100 to 20 may be a big deal, but beyond that the principle of diminishing returns kicks in.
 
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Reply #8 - 5th Jan, 2008 at 6:37am

Chuck Jodry   Offline
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In point of fact i got a reading of 49 drawcalls for the scenery and the F18 together when i checked that some time ago
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Reply #9 - 16th Jan, 2008 at 12:10pm

Chuck Jodry   Offline
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Her... sweater may need a tweak or two as an aid in revealing her charms further.


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« Last Edit: 17th Jan, 2008 at 7:40pm by Chuck Jodry »  

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Reply #10 - 20th Jan, 2008 at 7:06am

Chuck Jodry   Offline
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A sneak peek at the results of Texture Baking  on the VC , each of the visible parts were individually rendered to texture
after being lit and where warranted adding Ambient Occlusion, normal mapping and a detail map.
Results, plastic that looks real or fuzzy cloth that looks fuzzy, rust thatlooks like it would leave a stain on your finger if you touch the screen.
The modalities of transferring the entire parts list assigned on a Bitmap to a new material have been refined
to the the extent that seconds are needed to test a new recipe or call a material from an ever growing library of presets
and swap the map assignments , instead of importing parts with " Library Materials " attached to them into a scene.
That the trip through XtoMDL takes a couple of seconds more means you can tweak and burn 30 versions an hour
of a given item allows subtle refinements to be tested until its just right in any light

Setting up and using the library is simply a case of defining the bitmaps and settings and clicking on the "put to library"
icon along the top of the material editor , this is a great way of preserving stock items like glass , chrome , and composites .

Additionally as you look at the actual construction process you realize that the best results come from using paint samples
of a solid color as they yield no pixilation and the panel lines , rivets , seams around filler caps are best defined with
the bump map and that grime and shadow are best done by baking in max as is the actual production of the original
artwork of a given part ... wing bolt or whathaveyou , one look at the work Mathias does with Multimedia File Viewing and Clickable Links are available for Registered Members only!!  You need to Login or Register
and in this long running thread Multimedia File Viewing and Clickable Links are available for Registered Members only!!  You need to Login or Register quite clearly shows the best low poly
construction is done with high poly modelling rendered to texture and projected on the simplified mesh, there is no substitute for
this method for the highest quality reproduction of models and it has been the domain of Max until lately , perhaps the blender
render will allow Gmax users some leeway in overlays and map production techniques.

leaving Photoshop as a compositing tool more than where the artwork is produced first and applied.

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Reply #11 - 20th Jan, 2008 at 11:07am

foxwolfen   Offline
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Quote:
.... and in this long running thread Multimedia File Viewing and Clickable Links are available for Registered Members only!!  You need to Login or Register quite clearly shows the best low poly
construction is done with high poly modelling rendered to texture and projected on the simplified mesh...

Shocked Shocked Shocked Shocked Shocked Shocked Shocked
 

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Reply #12 - 15th Feb, 2008 at 8:34pm

Chuck Jodry   Offline
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Final touches & the RXP Gauge Set installed today its time for a little flight , the remaining
tasks involve effects by and large , so its time for the variations based on this Airframe
and the now complete templates in Max and the Master psd, a one bitmap job to repaint any
version.


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Reply #13 - 16th Feb, 2008 at 10:09am

Chuck Jodry   Offline
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First Variation a mornings work , raw file to out the door to the boss for his first looksee , its time for him to think of the interior color scheme

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Reply #14 - 22nd Feb, 2008 at 5:22pm

Chuck Jodry   Offline
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Couple more , there gets to be a point where changes are subtle and by now its at the poly level
and interior lighting and effects , those screen shots are pending completion of the the full light show .
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