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n4gix

Aircraft Models affected by Scenery

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Hey, I have a small question for the FS Team, and it relates specifically to one of my - for the want of a better word - annoyances with FS2004. At night-time whilst parked under some light, the light has no effect on the aircraft. I assume this is because of the _L Textures. Will this change in FSX?Kind Regards,Matt

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If I undersatand the scenario, you aren't really parking under a light source, just a 3D object that's been textured to make it look like a light. Therefore we don't shade object/aircraft. The same holds true for FSX. There are only 2 real light sources--the sun and moon. We play tricks with things like landing and beacon lights but that's about it.

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You are not updating the lighting in the sim?That's one of the things I was hoping for the most - the addition of the ability to do things like self shadows and provide true projected lighting.How does the red reflected lighting from the marker lights and interior work?Simpit

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I can understand why MS wouldn't take on adding lighting sources into the sim. From what I understand about 3D rendering, the only way you could do that would be some form of ray tracing and that is extremely processor and graphics card intensive. Even using trickery as they do with landing lights eats up computing cycles. I assume MS chooses to do the landing lights because they know it's a controlled thing. The light is going to be in a single known spot and all they have to do is brighten polys below the beam in a pre-defined pattern where the size is dependent upon altitude. Now imagine that any scenery designer could plug in a light source anywhere they desire and those lights could be defined to have very specific beam patterns, colors, intensities, etc. Also imagine, as you desired, that any object in any area around that light source could be brightened based on how beams from that source struck it. That's ray tracing where you basically draw out vectors from every point on the light source in all possible directions and see what they hit. I'm sure MS engineers are fully capable of building in that functionality but their tests have shown we'd be flying in a wonderfully textured environment at 1 - 2 FPS. I prefer my aircraft to move every once in awhile.Art

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I don't think it would take ray-tracing to add projected lighting to a modern graphics engine - there are lots of them out there as examples that have pretty good headlights, flares, etc. that work well nowadays on most modern computers.You are probably correct that it would still be too much of a computing burden on the Flight sim engine, given the essentially unlimited line of sight that they provide.The team have conquered a lot of the other challenges that I would have thought challenging - I'm still amazed at the smoothness of 9.6m terrain mesh, and the new textures that are coming with FSX - neat! Enough so that I was hoping that they could have pulled another rabbit out of their hat.Looking at the screenshots provided so far it probably won't matter though.Ah, well - I'll still be among the first in line to buy, as I have been for over 20 years.Simpit

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adding one or two lights can be done, with considerable overhead.But when you're talking about FS you're talking about (on an average size airport) hundreds of light sources in view simultaneously.When you then add lights outside the airport area (streetlights for starters) you can say performance goodbye on every conceivable hardware (maybe short of a Cray YMP).

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Hi,Something could be done without ray tracing, but it wouldn't be as nice. Each light pole could be coded with the width of the beam (i.e. "45 degrees each side of the pole's heading") and a distance. Then the FS engine could lighten the plane (I would assume the whole thing) when in proximity to the plane (within the distance value). The light beam wouldn't be blocked by other scenery objects, but it would be better than what we have today.Hope this helps,--Tom GibsonCal Classic Propliner Page: http://www.calclassic.comFreeflight Design Shop: http://www.freeflightdesign.comDrop by! ___x_x_(")_x_x___

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I have to say that is some extremely dissapointing news, at least for me. I despise the way landing and taxi lights look in FS9. In most situations I can see better in the dead of night with my landing lights turned off. As they are now it looks like your landing on a giant sheet of snow at night. Even with the downloadable "fixes" from AVSIM, they still are lousy at portraying actual landing lights.

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Yep. Can't say I like it much either but that's about what we can do until DX10 arrives.

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You see, that was exactly what I was hoping for! Independant light sources would add so much to the realism of the sim. I can't believe the landing lights will stay as they are. It's truly better to have them turned of than on.For me this is a huge disapointment, but could it be updated with a later patch? As I understand ms plans to patch the sim after the release of windows vista which will take benefit of dx10.cheers,C.G.

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>Yep. Can't say I like it much either but that's about what we>can do until DX10 arrives.Well, there is something than can be done as far as taxi and landing lights are concerned......simply have the modelers set the color property and opacity of the Material to something less that "pure white" and 100%... :-lolI typically use 168,168,168 for the Diffuse Color, and about 50-60% Opacity for landing lights, and 30-40% Opacity for taxi lights.This allows the 'beams' to illuminate, but not "wash out" the ground surface... ;)For more modern quartz-halogen type lights, I will set the saturation and hue of the Diffuse Color to a values more "bluish"This would completely eliminate the need to make any adjustments to the default spotlight.bmp file...Expanding on this technique, it is even possible with XML in the model to create "high beam/low beam" lighting, by swapping out the polys used for LIGHT_LAND and LIGHT_TAXI... :-cool

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