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ankh21

Shockwave Redux on AI not visible from VC

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Hey folks,

 

recently i purchased Shockwave Redux lights and added them to my AI aircrafts.

Now i was wondering about strange behaviour:

 

-The lights are displayed correctly when AI planes and own aircraft are on the ground.

-The lights are displayed correctly when AI planes are airborne and my own aircraft is on the ground. I can see the strobes of AI planes over a distance of many miles (much more than 10nm)!

-The lights are lost on AI planes when i lift off, at about 1.500 feet above MSL, no matter the distance of the AI planes.

-The lights will be visible on all AI planes over miles, if i change from inside my VC to the outside view during flight.

 

I searched the Forum and found some posts from Steve who told us, that there is  a change in displaying lights depending in the distance, and that he implemented modifications in his fixer, so that lights will be displayed correctly especially on short distances, not over miles away.

But why is there no problem when changing to an outside view? What is the difference between being on the ground in the VC (working lights on AI over miles), being airborne in the VC (no lights) and viewing from an outside view when airborne (lights all over) :unsure:

 

By the way, i've tested light conversion with the fixer. Then, my landing lights are better (without fixing they are only visible from certain angles), but then there are absolutely no  lights on AI anywhere.

I searched the A2A Forum, but there the only Statement i found was: The lights are not intended to be used with DX10, so we cannot make sure they work.

As Shockwave lights are very common, has someone in the community a solution?

 

And please apologize some mistakes you may find, writing in english is a very rare practice for me :blush:

 

Matthias

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Things getting interesting now...

Accidentally i had a look over my virtual shoulder sitting in my VC, and bam...AI lights were there!! But only when looking back, +/- 91 degrees or more. As soon as i turn view more ahead, lights are gone.

So the angle seems to play an important role...any way to modify this?

Thanks for any idea :)

 

Matthias

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Effect lights only appear in DX10 (due to bugs in the way lights are handled in the FSX DX10 engine) if there is another effect light with a "shine" in view. By a shine I mean that the effect is defined to illuminate other surfaces.

 

When you can see a navigation light on your aircraft that has a "shine" (either you are outside the VC or inside the VC looking towards the location of a nav light on the wing) other effect lights then become visible. At an airport there may be effect lights with shines visible which provide for the AI lights working.

 

This is all totally crazy but its just the way that it is.

 

The DX10 Light Package is designed to provide a good a workaround as possible making sure that every standard nav light has a shine (including strobes) - however even these will have odd cutoffs on occasion.

 

I guess that you have replaced these with Shockwave Lights. If things worked before then I would revert.

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Wow,

 

thanks Steve for this detailed explanation! It might be that looking back (more than 90°) will start rendering the own wing nav light, wich is not visible through the VC walls. That explaines the strange changes in visibility!

You are right, before installing Shockwave, all AI lights worked perfectly thanks to your fixer, but have been not as "impressive" as the redux versions :blush:

 

Mh, just an idea, would it be possible to place a light with shine inside the AI aircraft body, coordinates something like 0.0, 0.0, 0.0, perhaps a strobe with shine? If the shine effect is limited to short distance, you should not see it from outside the AI aircraft, but as rendering a light with shine, the DX10 engine should also display all other lights from (nearly) all other angles?

 

Happy New Year to all of you ^_^ and in particular for you, Steve! Thank you so much for your work!

 

Matthias

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I had some problems when I installed shockwave redux lights, during the installation it ask if you , something like, " do you wish to illuminate ground", if you ticked it , you can run the installer again and click no, and see if that sorts the problem out.

Cant remember if I uninstalled and reinstalled the libries or the shaders file in fsx at the time, hope this helps.

Bob

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Hey Bob,

 

i think the problem was the part in front of the monitor!!  :angry: 

I am SOOO stupid!

As Steve suggested i reverted everything back to the normal lights, about 100 AI aircraft.cfgs.

Fired up FSX, placed the plane at KSFO 6 a.m., departed behind an illuminated Airbus, and BAM...the AI went dark in front of my eyes. Couldn't beleave that! But i had a sneaking suspicion:

I did every test with the Captain Sim 737, one of my favourite planes. Then i repeated the test with the stock FSX 737-800, and now all AI aircraft are visible over miles,in every situtation.

I am hopping mad!! Never do tests with an addon aircraft, Matthias, NEVER EVER. Must be something with the VC of the Captain Sim 737, in the CS 727 the light behaviour is normal.

 

Sorry, sorry for much ado about nothing :(

 

By the way, my shockwave installer didn't have an Option to illuminate ground. I only purchased the REDUX Version for FSX?!

 

Thank you all for your comments and your help!

 

Matthias

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Mh,

 

again i've been a little bit too fast! Did another flight, now with CS 727 which seems to be ok, but again AI lights are not visible during cruise, only

when the own wing is rendered (viewing back). I will do some more testing tomorrow and report.

Anyone with a CS plane and shockwave lights who can confirm?

Just at the moment all AI are back again, but i have EDDL in sight right now and have to prepare my landing :)

 

Matthias

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Happy New Year :)

 

I did some more testing, but no luck so far. Even the normal navigation and strobes lights are not visible from the VC when airborne, even with the stock 737-800 :(

Lights in DX10 su...

@Steve, if using your ballast.fx as the light.0 in the light section, will have any positive effect?? Perhaps as a phantom light inside the planes fuselage?

 

Matthias

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Matthias

 

You could try attaching the fx_dx10shield.fx to your aircraft. Start with the fx_dx10shieldtest.fx. The latter is a set of visible red lights that you should try and position to be about 10 feet in front of the cockpit. If you can get that to work then switch the non test version which are identical but phantom lights.

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Thanks Steve for helping with this topic even on the first day of the Year!

Mh, just to get ist right, in front of the cockpit i am flying in, or in front of every's ai cockpit?

I guess in front of my own cockpit to have a "shine" effect in view?

Will try and report, thanks!!

 

Matthias

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yes that's correct - but my experience was that it took a bit of doing.

 

The "shield" was an alternative to the airport light field - but I decided the latter was better - but if you want to see AI and have only a few aircraft that you fly it might be worth experimenting.

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Thank you ^_^

 

I'am going to modify the stock 737 and perhaps one of the CS planes for testing. That's even better than modifying about 100 of AI aircraft .cfgs :wacko:

 

Matthias

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Oh Steve,

 

you made my day! Although my 737 looked like Rudolph with its red nose, your hint with shieldtest solved the problem. Inserted as first effect as light.0 = 1, so as a beacon, and suddenly the sky was full of little blinking AI :-)

Will do further testing now with the phantom lights now.

But i wonder if i am the only one missing other planes from cockpit view? I Must confess, i can't remember the thing before installing redux lights.

But now i am happy like a child on christmas, thank you so much. I will so further testing. Perhaps there is a possibility to activate AI lights in every flying cockpit.

Steve, you gave me a wunderful Christmas present!

 

Matthias

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Hi all !

Very interesting post as I'm also suffering from the lack of traffic lights !! Thanks Matthias for searching a solution. I'm not at home those days but will try Steve's suggestion as soon as possible. Keep us informed Matthias ;)

 

Cheers

 

Cedric

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Hi Cedric,

 

Steve's suggestion works like a charme! Adding the invisible shieldfield in front of the cockpit makes all the traffic visible.

 

BUT: I was quite amazed, that i could see AI traffic in front of my plane without any modification and without any Airport surrounding. After some Investigation, i am quite sure, that you can see all the lights, when the cockpit night texture changes to daytime texture.

Place your aircraft at a busy airport during dawn, just a few minutes before the FSX time and season table Switches to daytime. Then take off and have some traffic Patterns around the airport. Watch your cockpit light, and at the moment the cockpit night texture changes to daytime texture, you can see the AI lights even if the airport is not in sight.

I will do some furhter testint, but it seems to be, that the cockpit night texture is involved.

 

Perhaps Steve has to restrain a laughter cause the Explanation of that might be very very simple, but i was quite amazed. So perhaps modifying the way FSX handles the cokcpit night texture would be easier than modifying every aircraft.cfg to get the shieldfield in Position.

 

Matthias

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Hi Matthias ! Thanks for your explanation. Can you guide me or explane me exactly how do you modify the cfg file (I mainly fly the 737 Pmdg for example).

I compiled myself over 900 bgl for the traffic AI and was a bit sad to see that strobes, nav lights did not appear correctly like with DX9, particularly when airborne. I would be really glad to find an answer !

And by the way....sorry for my bad english....

Cheers

Cedric

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Hey Cedric,

 

no need to be worried about your english. I am from Germany, and the last time i've been writing in english that much was in school, now i'am 36 years old :-)

 

Ok, here is what i've done:

 

As Steve suggested, you have to find the fx_dx10shield effect. It's from Steve's DX10 scenery fixer. Search for it inside your FSX effect folder. Then you have to modify your aircraft.cfg, don't forget to make a backup copie for safety reasons before!

Inside the aircraft.cfg, go to the  [lights] section. There you will find many entries like "light.0 = 1....". I inserted this: light.0 = 1, xx.x, yy.yy, zz.z, fx_dx10shield.fx. light.0 means it's the first light, and the = 1 means, it's a strobe light, so it should be fired up right at the beginning, before other lights are switched on.

x, y and z are the coordinates to tell FSX where to put this invisible light to. Now y is very easy, use 0.00, as the light sould be in the Center line of the airplane. x is the position in feet before the Center of the aircraft model. If you have a shockwave file for your aircraft.cfg, you can look about the positionn of the front gear taxi light or of the VC lights to have an idea of the aircraft's dimensions. And z is the postion above the Center of your aircraft, i alway use a value near the beacon on the top of the fuselage. At last you have to renumber all other effect lights. light.0 =, light.1 =, light.2 =, and so on. Safe the .cfg and make a test flight.

 

Some things in addition: If you are uncertain about the positions, just use the fx_dx10shieldTEST.fx, by this you get a red glow on your aircraft's nose, so you can place the effect a Little bit easier. And as far as i know, the number of light effects is limited to 18 or something like that. So if you have about light.0 to light.17 in the [light] section, you have to be careful cause you might loose other effect lights with editing. PMDG is very special (e.g. VC shadows), and for i don't have a PMDG 737 i can't tell you if my instructions are right, just try!

 

Good luck, and please Report back. I am very interested in this topic now. Steve has managed DX10 thus far, it must be a bad spell if we all together won't be able to manage AI lights in DX10 :-)

 

Matthias

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Thanks for the quick answer !

So the light cannot be added at the end of the light section ex: no 8,9,10 etc ? Anyway not a big deal. Will try first with the stock FSX 737.

And the goal is to put that light 10 feet in front of the VC, right ?

That light will be "automatiquely" ON, or do I need to switch ON the strobes ?

Will try as soon as possible (next week).

 

Thanks

 

Cedric

 

PS: I'm from switzerland ;)

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Hey Cedric,

 

nearly neighbor :))

I don't know exactly. Following Steve's blog on his website, the sequence of displaying lights has an effect. Light 1 influences light 2, but i don't know if that's the bottom line at all. Following this thread, he just mentioned the need of a shine in view. Placing the effect light just at the end of the list would be easier :))

Yes, 10 feet in front, so you have that invisible shine, no matter the direction you are looking through the cockpit windows. As long as there is a light with shine in view, you can see the AI lights.

Oh, as my default flight is with electricity on, i can't answer your last question. But i can tell that the CaptainSim airplanes i am flying with are sometimes quite tricky. Yesterday i tried to define an effect as 6, taxi light. But the only way i could this effect turn on and off was to switch the wing inspection light. I gues, High end models like PMDG are very complex, and the developers do a Lot of tricks to get things the way they like. So results of modifying .cfg can be surprising :)

I am very tensed what you can tell us after doing your tests, and please try to do the Night/Day cockpit texture test i mentioned before.

 

Thank you very much, and noch a guarde Tag to swizerland :) Have been in St. Gallen this year, but no time to go for a winter holiday to Swizerland this year :(

 

Matthias

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Ok guys,

 

i have done some further testing with the shockwave lights. Thanks Steve for his advise to insert his fx_dx10shield effect in the aircraft.cfg. Now every AI traffic was visible over miles.

 

But i ran into another problem. I tried to add a certain beacon to my CaptainSim 727, but the light was only visible when 1) the clipmode in camera.cfg for spot view was changed to NORMAL, and 2) another effect, in this case a vaportrail on the wingtip, became in sight. Oh oh, i had a suspicion: I observed similar effects with airplanes not compatible with DX10, so i had a closer look to the shockwave lights and noticed, that also landing light effects sometimes are not visible viewing from certain angles. So i think, shockwave lights are not fully DX10 compatible. As far as i follow the shockwave forum, the lights are not intended to be used with DX10, so compatibility is not guaranteed.

For this reason i UNTICKED "Exclude shockwave lights" and did a conversion, and surprise: the beacon on my 727 was there. Also, the nav lights and the landing lights on the stock FSX 737 had no cutoff angles any more.

BUT: AI lights are only visible over very short distance, as Steve mentions in the DX10 Fixer manual. So AI traffic again is unvisible. If the CaptainSim model has any iinfluence (beacons are part of the model, not an effect in the aircraft.cfg) i can't tell.

 

So at the end, it seems to me, that you have to decide if you want shockwave lights as a cool effect on your AI planes, or if you want shockwave lights working on your own aircraft in all situations. If you leave the shockwave lights uncomverted, you will have side effects on your own aircraft.

 

That's my testing result.

 

Matthias

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