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More Letter Home WIP images (Read 1360 times)
4th Oct, 2008 at 10:54pm

J_MacKay   Offline
Inspecteur des Polygonnes
Ohio

Gender: male
Posts: 832
*****
 
Here's the FSX version of RCAF Summerside as it looked in 1942. There didn't appear to be any default FSX Summerside airport, so dropping a copy of the airport built up in FS9 with EZ scenery design was a pretty straight forward process. Much easier than Moncton.

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I've gained a lot of admiration for the old-time scenery designers once I discovered that it's possible to convert API macros developed for earlier versions of FS into gmax files using a program called ModelConverterX. In this screenshot of the Anso flying over the base, the truck down below is just 3 simple boxes with some good textures applied. The Anson on the ground is a scenery prop built using a FS98 model that was imported into Gmax.

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In this shot, you can see a API macro tractor pulling a converted FS98 Harvard and another 3 box truck. I tried animating the tractor pulling the Harvard as an animated scenery object, but the playback was too jerky. Because I have all the parts loaded in gmax I was able to export it as a mdl and put it into a car model folder and will be able to record the movement using the recorder module.

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Here's the stage prop Harvard next to the FSX Harvard. The prop weighs in at 889 polygons and the "hero" model of the Harvard comes in at 32,000 polygons.

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Here's a close up of part of the flight line at Summerside. If all these models had been regular models instead of scenery props, I'd be making a slide show instead of a movie.

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The key is knowing how close the camera will be to the models.

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Reply #1 - 11th Oct, 2008 at 9:15am

J_MacKay   Offline
Inspecteur des Polygonnes
Ohio

Gender: male
Posts: 832
*****
 
Here's a screen shot of RAF Charlottetown. I haven't been able to detect any visual difference between an RAF base in Canada and a RCAF base. Maybe the only difference is whose picture is hanging on the C.O.'s office wall.

According to one account - Prince Edward Island was 100 percent prohibition at the time. Maybe I should add some rum runners going up and down the coast.

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All the airfields mentioned in the letter have now been modeled.

Now comes the storyboards
 
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Reply #2 - 18th Oct, 2008 at 11:57pm

J_MacKay   Offline
Inspecteur des Polygonnes
Ohio

Gender: male
Posts: 832
*****
 
Here's a tip if ever you want to export a gmax model into another 3d program for making close-ups of pilots or some special effects.
Scale up the model by 5000 or 6000 percent. This way your vertices don't get squished or moved out of place during the file conversion process.

Here is the result of enlarging the gmax model 5000%, resetting the scale, then exporting as Quake MD3 model. Using a file conversion program the MD3 was converted to 3ds, which was then imported into Carrara Pro 6.

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Reply #3 - 24th Oct, 2008 at 6:58am

J_MacKay   Offline
Inspecteur des Polygonnes
Ohio

Gender: male
Posts: 832
*****
 
I recently discovered that there's a group of scenery designers working on a massive project of building all the BCATP bases for FSX and FS9 (Flight Ontario). The three bases that I'm interested in aren't finished yet, but I have been in contact with the buildings builder and have been able to get copies of the two hanger types used. The authenticity just went up 100 percent.

Today is the 66th anniversary of the letter being written.

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The first bundle for FSX, the AT6D Texan and Harvard MkII are finished and are going through final testing and should be released in a matter of days. A lot of time and effort was put into developing a totally new set of gauges, and yes we remembered to have the mixture control move back to front in the Texan and front to back in the Harvard.
 
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Reply #4 - 25th Oct, 2008 at 11:29pm

J_MacKay   Offline
Inspecteur des Polygonnes
Ohio

Gender: male
Posts: 832
*****
 
For a long time now I've been pretty fed up with the Poser community and their lack of production of models for the movies that I'd like to make. To compare it to FS, it was like you only had three planes, a P-51, a Boeing 747 and a Bell helicopter. Well that all changed a couple days ago when I discovered this package over at Renderosity.

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Now the big debate is which package to do the close-up animations in. Poser 6, DAZ Studio or Carrara Pro 6.

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At the moment I'm leaning toward Carrara Pro since it gives me better control over the Harvard model. A few changes will need to be made to the texture maps to get the clothes to go from USAAF to RCAF but that will be the easy part compared to making the pilot figure look like my Dad and making all the elements fit. Fortunately there aren't any speaking parts.

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No temptation to convert the figure to FSX, way too many polys, even for FSX.

There's a few extras in the package- maybe after I finish my demo, I could make a quick one for Paco's B-17?

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