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Thread: Making a convincing ocean?

  1. #1
    New Member
    Registered: Jan 2018

    Making a convincing ocean?

    I'm trying to make an island with a surrounding ocean in Dromed, and I was wondering if anyone has any tips on how to make it look as if the ocean goes on for a while rather than it just being a small box?



    I could use some distant art to mask some of it such as islands or rock formations, but there will be areas where there is just ocean, and as you can see in the screenshot above at the close side where the camera is located, it is very noticeable that it abruptly ends.

    I've noticed in a few FM's this hasn't been hidden; I remember in Pirates Ahoy which had a lot of ocean areas that ended very close to the shore, but is there a way to make it look less abrupt?

  2. #2
    Dóttirin klęšist oft móšur möttli
    Registered: Apr 2015
    Dusky/dark water texture might help. There are some dark water textures in HD Texture Mod
    http://www.ttlg.com/forums/showthread.php?t=144303

  3. #3
    Member
    Registered: Oct 2004
    Location: Ireland/Poland
    These may or may not work, but worth trying:
    1) use cylindrical shape for your ocean - not cubical. This way distance to the horizon line will be always more or less constant.
    2) going one step further - use an upside-down cone shape for the water (you may flatten the bottom in the center by using another solid brush. But this will eliminate the gap you're seeing now between the water surface and the ocean bottom. You will have to stop player from being able to swim faraway, as this would reveal the the trick.
    3) use fog with a large distance. You can use different fog settings for the water volume.

  4. #4
    Member
    Registered: Jan 2000
    Location: Taylors, SC
    Try putting a very small ship silhouette on the horizon.
    Shadowspawn's Thief Pages
    Darkness is always faster than light. No matter how fast light travels, it always finds the dark waiting for it.

  5. #5
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2009
    Location: WearyTaffer
    I wonder if someone could come up with a distant art image of the ocean, something that could be adjusted to cover the gap and give the illusion that the water goes out further as long as you didn't get too close to the edges.

  6. #6
    New Member
    Registered: Jan 2018
    Is it possible to extend the world bound limit? I could set it to double and that would probably give me enough space to make it look better, but I'm not sure if dromed would allow or even be able to handle that.

  7. #7
    Desperately Dodgy Moderator
    Registered: Nov 2001
    Location: Fields of bluegrass
    You can't go to or above 1000 for any X Y or Z coordinate, if that answers your question.

  8. #8
    Dóttirin klęšist oft móšur möttli
    Registered: Apr 2015
    Max world size: configurable up to +/-2000 (from +/-1000) [only increase if absolutely necessary]
    (modders notes) with world_size command.
    It's also available in the DromEdToolkit (Exrta Menu)

  9. #9
    Member
    Registered: Apr 2011
    The only problem I can see in your screenshot is that I can see the sky through the transparent water. And I assume that, if it's a cube, that the corners will also be visible too, as PinkDot pointed out. Both are easy to fix. Here's an approach that looks decent:

    If your air brush is rectangular, replace it with a cylinder. For me, a 512x512 cylinder with 16 sides seems pretty good.

    Make sure the water brush is also a cylinder with the same X/Y dimensions. Give it a default texture of whatever you want the ocean floor to look like. Make sure its walls also use the same texture. Go through each of the walls and reduce the texture scale: for me, 15 left the texture a bit too visible through the water, but 14 was perfect.*

    (Click through to see the under-the-water screenshot too)


    *If you're using custom textures, then leave the texture scale at 16. Using your favourite image editor, copy the texture you're using for the ocean floor, and either rescale it down to 16x16, or add a strong gaussian blur—the idea is to make the details invisible, leaving just the colour variation. Then use that texture for the side walls of the water brush. You'll get the same visual effect without the lightmaps taking more texture space needlessly.

  10. #10
    New Member
    Registered: Jan 2018
    That's quite a nice way of doing it, thanks for that. I'll try it and see how I go.

    I'm just starting out in dromed and it's very demoralizing But I'll try and keep at it.

  11. #11
    Member
    Registered: Apr 2011
    Quote Originally Posted by Djent View Post
    I'm just starting out in dromed and it's very demoralizing But I'll try and keep at it.
    Yeah, Dromed can be a bit of a curmudgeon, especially at first! I started out with it for the first time back in April this year, so the pain of it is still pretty fresh in my memory.

    The best advice I can give is: if your plan for your first map is really small, then just dive in! But if you have a grand vision for your first map. like I did, don't try building it all at once. Pick a very small part of it, like one building, and just work on that: starting with a blockout, then texturing, room brushing, lighting, detailing, adding AIs and so on, until that part feels 90% finished. You'll learn a ton doing that which will make the rest of your map much, much easier: you'll be familiar with the workflow and Dromed's features and foibles, and the inevitable mistake and corrections you make in that first building, you'll have learned how to avoid.

  12. #12
    Member
    Registered: Aug 2007
    Location: LosAngeles: Between Amusements
    And if you haven't seen any missions which do something like what you are thinking of, then odds are it is NOT a beginner project, and you should scope down what you want to do. Crawl before walk and walk before run.

  13. #13
    Member
    Registered: May 2001
    Location: Boston MA
    Vfig and Larry are exactly right. For your first mission, think small and see it to the end. Much better to complete a smaller mission than to give up halfway through building a big mission which I suspect has happened often.

    Welcome to the world of Dromed. It is great and frustrating at the same time but you have a very helpful community available for help 24x7.

    Good luck. Look forward to seeing a mission from you in the future.

  14. #14
    Member
    Registered: Mar 2001
    Location: Ireland
    I'd suggest hiding the edges of the ocean with a long-distance fog.

  15. #15
    Member
    Registered: Sep 1999
    Location: Portland, OR
    Warning: The following is Stupid ambitious, and I've never tried it, so take this with a grain of salt. Perhaps someone else can chime in.

    I was thinking the ocean floor can be the sky texture, that way the distant art can stretch all the way down so there won't be a noticeable divide on the horizon. Looking down can be sand at a distance. Then make the water murky some way so you can't quite see that it's distant art; attach to the player a plane of blurry heat disks that triggers when the head goes under or slightly just before. This is how I plan to make murky water in my mission but haven't done it yet. Still a noob, but long time lurker. Perhaps ditch the blurry heat disks (will make the screen lag on older machine) and trade with png disk fire of partially translucent blue bitmaps. Or maybe particle disks.

  16. #16
    Member
    Registered: May 2002
    Location: Texas
    I struggled with this same problem while making Derelict Dock District. I settled on using an oversized sfx that mimiced fog just above the ocean surface. I also used methods to prevent the player from getting close enough to the far edges to see them. I wish it was possible to make water motion effects like those used in Tomb Raider.

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