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Geofa

Clouds

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When will the clouds in Flight Simulator be like that in the real world? For instance, when you fly through FSX clouds, they are just 2D "sheets" rolling aside like curtains.When do you think that the clouds will be such that when you fly through them, there will be variable fogging, such as part or all of the wing cant be seen, and you can see mist around them?Also, when do you think vapour trails between the fuselage and engines like in real life will be seen in future FS versions?

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For the cloud question, it's called FEX. Get it. The new Super High Definition cloud textures with it will do what you want.

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Yes, FEX all the way! Very realistic. FEX also allows you to change water and wave animation. It is one of the must have add ons.

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The problem with the couds is they are only 3d textirs, to do waht you ans i would like they would need to probablu use particles to make them up. Just fly through a cloud in FB1946 and you will see how the clouds actually pass over the wings. I hope they do that in fs11

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I can only imagine the difficulty trying to simulate something as complex as clouds.The visibility issue overall needs to be solved.One thing I hate even when using ASX is this.You look up and see a solid cloud layer,say 3000 ft.Vis is marginal vfr or IFR but you cannot see blue skies through the solid layer.You climb through it and BAM, 100 mile vis,scattered clouds and you can see the ground.Descend through the back and BAM, back to solid layer and you cannot see blue sky above.

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Funny though that 3rd party people manage to do it?

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I hope they do eventually release FS with a version of particle clouds, that way we can fly through them, just like in real life....Problem is guys, the hardware... probably need a octal-core system with a few GPUs SLI'd together...Its like you guys say: Particles.FEX looks good for 3D clouds, but it doesnt appear to remove the curtain/2D cloud effect. It would be great if it was super imposed over particles.Any estimates when FS could have particles?I remember Falcon 3.0 had a very simple 'inside clouds misty' effect, and FS 5.0 had that as well.

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If these clouds drop shadows in the future FS i'm quite happy with the current system. They could indeed improve them by adding particles and visibility drops. Another thing to improve the current system is to add more texture variation to them. Then the need for rotation of the 2d planes becomes unnecessary. Which means, the beautifull FEX hd clouds will be shown to their full potention. I don't use them now because it looks awfull to see those very nice cumulus cloud tops at the bottom or side of a cloud.Regards, Gerrit Kranenbarg


http://www.oncourse-software.co.uk/forum_i...e_supporter.jpg

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>For the cloud question, it's called FEX. Get it. The new>Super High Definition cloud textures with it will do what you>want.No they won't, as others have pointed out the whole cloud system just isn't capable of doing what the OP would like it to do (as would I). No replacement textures are ever going to fix it.As to when the engine will be able to do clouds properly, good question. It's an incredibly difficult problem. Think of the variety of different types of cloudscapes you see in real life. Sometimes you see clouds a bit like the FS ones, i.e. scattered, small-ish clouds at varying density. Other times you see a solid overcast. Other times you see vast great slabs of cloud with small breaks in between. If you travel by air and look at a solid overcast layer from above you often see a beautiful, chaotic, 3 dimensional pattern of ridges and swirls.One of the biggest challenges for the programmers of the current flight simulator is the accurate and detailed rendering of complex terrain across vast distances. Imagine if they had to do that for a scene that is not only different for every flight, but changes constantly within a flight! And on top of that it's entirely 3 dimensional, not just 2d textures stretched over an array of elevation points. And on top of THAT it's got to make sense given the current weather conditions. And so on.The size of the job boggles the mind. But I do hope they're working on it. :)Colin

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Now you know one of the reasons I have no need for possible "waving hands" in the next version of MSFS. There are just too many components of real flight that need addressing first.Richard

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The clouds "flat sheets" have to be superceded soon, its been like that since fs2000 - dont you find that remarkable?Im sure it cant be too hard to have volumetric clouds, even if the patterns of the clouds are preset to a given range of types and subtypes. Now with AEGIS' particle accelerator card, 3D particle/volumetric clouds should not be a problem. I kind of miss the FS5.0 clouds, as they were although blocky, you could actually go deep inside those clouds.Also, when it comes to flying through the clouds, the depth of the mist changes, such as being able to see the wing, then partially, then not at all. Not only that, the lighting levels need to change as you go into a thick overcast layer from a bright blue world into a gloomy underlying landscape beneath the cloud layer. Any ideas guys on when something like this will become available in the world of FS?

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I am happy someone brought it up again finally. For years I have put the request out as well. Fly had some fantastic clouds, although they were very limited in scope/feature they were pretty realistic and flying through them was like really flying through them.Anyhow, there are things like having strobes on and flying through a cloud at night (you would just see a blinding bright white flash outside the cockpit everytime the strobes flash) would be nice (I saw this way back in something like FS95? then it went away.Or how about the thunderstorms "lighting up" the whole top part of the cloud even though you can't see the lightning bolt?

(okay a real geek filming but you get the drift...)This may just be cosmetic but it really adds to the sense of immersion - something FS IMO still lacks, but is getting better at.We need more clues to our surroundings to make us feel there. How about the Puffs of vapor smoke out of a piston engine exaust on cold days?And if ACES are really revamping the engine as they say they are, why not implement something like dedicating all or most resources to the clouds as you get close to them and drop out (or hide/i.e. do not simulate or spend resources on) AI that are miles away or even close because you won't see them anyway, drop out simulating scenery below except some generic textures (since the clouds would mask the scenery anyway?)A random cloud generator that uses some real world values. Okay we know if the temp. at the ground is 95 degrees F, and the temp at 30,000 feet is -20, humidity is up, time of day is afternoon there are likely going to be some cumulonimbus around and possibly thunderstorms.Let's see clouds that are different every time, we would not likely see the same cloud "scene" in real life two times, let's let the computer randomly make the scene too!?***One of the biggest challenges in flying isn't so much flying the aircraft itself, but challenging the ENVIRONMENT for which surrounds the aircraft at any one time***Thanks for listening!

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As some folks here have already mentioned, FEX does what you are looking for. I have been flying 'rw' for 35 years and the clouds with FEX look and act as real as it can get in FS.XP Pro SP2-FSX SP2AMD FX60-8800GTS-2 Gigs RAMFEX-GEX-UTUSA-FSGenesis-and a bunch of other stuffComputer optomized by www.fs-gs.com

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FEX/ASX are just 3D textures imposed on some 2D "sheets" (as the OP calls it) grouped together. But they do not give you true 3d volumetric clouds. Viewed from a distant, FEX sure looks fantastic and very realistic. But flying through them, IMO isn't. They are just that - textures.Do you ever notice that the cloud textures themselves seem to have fixed orientation relative to your position? Try flying directly below or above a cumulus cloud and watch it closely. You will notice the textures "rotate" (as in a swirl) as it passes directly under or overhead, because they "switch" orientation to face the player so as to maintain the "artwork" orientation... in other words, if the texture were the letter "E", it will remain "E" no matter where you are becaue they will always "face" you - the player point of view. This means the texture artworks don't "mirror" their image as you move to the other side. What I think is (correct me if i'm wrong), when you pass through them , it's not the clouds themselves that give you the haze/low vis. Instead, the program "calls up" a routine to simulate this as you pass through the cloud. I am not a RW pilot, but having been spending much time playing IL-2,FB a few years back, I find flying through clouds gives a more realistic feeling of really being deep inside a volume of clouds - random partial visibility on the wings, you actually see the wings cut through the puffs, turbulence, shudders, varying visibility (try that as you chase a BF-109 :( ) - not perfect, but IMO way better than FS. And mind you, IL-2/FB clouds DO project shadows on land and water! :) If such can be done, I am sure FS can do it.Having said that, I hope this is one area ACES will revamp in future versions of FS.Cheers!

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This is something that ACES REALLY needs to address. How about being able to see cloud shadows on the ground and also being able to see the walls of precipitation falling from a thunderstorm at a distance?To me, this is more important than having people waving goodbye at you or giving you the birdie if you arrive late to the gate.______________Efrain RuizLiveDISPATCHhttp://www.livedispatch.orgCooler Master cosmos SDFI LP UT P35 T2R (3-17-2008 BIOS) | E8400 @ 4GHz (500MHz x 8) | 2 x 2GB OCZ Flex II PC9200EVGA Nvidia GTX280Two (2) WD3200AAKS 320GB (Operating System RAID-0) | Two (2) WD3200AAKS 320GB (Flight Simulator RAID-0)Corsair CM PSU-750TX | Asus 20X DVD

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