Visibility of other ships

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Stardust
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Visibility of other ships

Post by Stardust »

Hi,

I am (very) new to Oolite and moved over to it from playing the Amiga version of Elite on my emulator.
While I am slowly getting the hang of things, there remains one thing, which really annoys me: I can hardly see enemy ships in the distance.
My question, as a spoiled Amiga player, where ships in a distance are represented by a grey pixel, then a grey cross, and finally by a small grey filled circle, before they're displayed as actual 3d graphics:
1. Don't you find it annoying that ships in the distance are hardly visible?
2. Is there an oxp which changes this? How could it be changed?

As for "how" this could be changed, I can hardly think of anything: I mean, I probably don't want a pixel/cross/circle "popping" into real graphics... And the only other idea I have would be to use (insanely) bright textures... -- Which probably also wouldn't look too good...

Frankly, I'm at a loss. All I know is: It annoys me, but I can't see a way around it. So, what's your take on this?

Thanks!
Philipp

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Re: Visibility of other ships

Post by Smivs »

Hi stardust
The ships are more or less easy to see depending on which ships you use - some of the OXP sets have brighter ships, some less so, but all should be visible at least, alhough a small ship at scanner range will only be one twinkling pixel :)
I wonder if you maybe need to check/adjust your screen settings or something similar and see if that helps.
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Re: Visibility of other ships

Post by Cody »

It's something you get used to with practice, but even an Anaconda looks small at 25km - it can be hit at that range, though.

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Re: Visibility of other ships

Post by another_commander »

You can always bring the ship you are trying to spot in front of you using the scanner, then use the scanner zoom feature ('z' key) to go to maybe 2:1 or even 3:1, where positional sensitivity is increased and make the final corrections (while continuing to approach on the original vector of course, otherwise the scanner lollipop may go off-scanner the moment you zoom in, depending on distance). When you are zoomed at this level and the target dot is in front of you, then the target in question will be straight ahead.

Oh and, no, it never felt strange how ships are shown at distance to me. ;-)

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Re: Visibility of other ships

Post by Stardust »

Hmm... Ok. Thanks for your input.
@another_commander: Well, I find them alright (as in: I know they're there, right in front of me), but I don't really see them...

But if you don't find it hard, I guess it really needs some time to "cross over" from the Amiga :)

Thx!
Philipp

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Re: Visibility of other ships

Post by Cody »

If you have fuel injectors fitted (TL 11, 600Cr), then get in closer fast - combat is more fun up close and personal.

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Re: Visibility of other ships

Post by Diziet Sma »

Something that can make a big difference is if you go into the game options and bump the Gamma setting up a few notches.. it helps make ships stand out more against the background, in a similar way to changing the monitor brightness, but unlike changing the brightness setting, it doesn't reduce the blackness of space.. try playing around with the Gamma level until you get the effect you want. You can really make the ships "pop" against the background, making them considerably easier to spot.

(oh yeah.. the Gamma setting is stored in the game-save, so you'll need to save a game before the change will persist across re-starts, and if you have multiple commanders/games saved, you'll need to set the gamma for each individually.)
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Re: Visibility of other ships

Post by Stardust »

Cool. I'll try that.
Thanks.

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Re: Visibility of other ships

Post by Griff »

some oxp shipsets are more visible than others, the arcelite shipset ships are quite brightly coloured and easy to spot although installing this oxp will replace all the ships in your game with these retro looking ones http://wiki.alioth.net/index.php/Griff_ArcElite

Smivs' shipset might be a better choice so you don't feel like you're playing a game with graphics from the 1980's http://wiki.alioth.net/index.php/Smivs%27_ShipSet

and also Dertiens recent ship pack might be worth a look
http://www.aegidian.org/bb/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=15835

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Re: Visibility of other ships

Post by Norby »

Stardust wrote:a small grey filled circle
[wiki]Telescope[/wiki] do something similar with ships over 5km (adjustable).

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Re: Visibility of other ships

Post by Sendraks »

Norby wrote:
Stardust wrote:a small grey filled circle
[wiki]Telescope[/wiki] do something similar with ships over 5km (adjustable).
Although it doesn't make ships easier to hit, just makes it easier to determine roughly where they are. Small craft are pretty much invisible inside the circle at 20km range, so hitting them still requires some practice.

The thing with the Amiga version of Elite (which is the version I cut my teeth on in the days of my youth) is that the grey circles representing ships was always a bit cheaty. You could see them. You could shoot them and they pretty much did feck all in response until they were at close range. Oolite ships are a good deal more responsive than that.

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Re: Visibility of other ships

Post by Stormrider »

I have the same issue, I usually don't see a ship til it starts shooting at me, even then I don't always "see" it, I just try to lock on the point their laser comes from. Other than that I see the exhaust plumes on the galcop ships really well, if you can find ships that have brighter exhaust it might help too, if your comp can deal with the shaders.
another_commander wrote:then use the scanner zoom feature ('z' key) to go to maybe 2:1 or even 3:1
I agree sometimes it looks like they are right in front of you, but in fact are above or below you far enough that you wouldn't see them anyway. Zooming in with the scanner lets you know.

I've played quite a few 3D games like this and most of them are the same way. I've gotten used to it, for me its part of the challenge of combat. :wink:
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Re: Visibility of other ships

Post by Stardust »

Interesting. It's good to know that you have similar problems seeing the ships but stood up to the challenge... I'll try telescope, though...
And I'll experiment with various ship designs...

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Re: Visibility of other ships

Post by Diogenese Senna »

As was mentioned earlier, adjust the gamma in the game options.

I use a projector system (Oolite in a darkened room on a 124 inch screen is immersive to say the least) but had the same problem of not being able to see ships at range above about 15km. Adjusted the gamma a few hours ago after reading this thread (up by three clicks) and suddenly the ships are more visible, the planets shine better, the suns dance with a corona that's worth seeing, and the background starfield (and nebula) are significantly improved.
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Re: Visibility of other ships

Post by Yah-Ta-Hey »

Even at extreme range it really doesn't matter if you toggle your missiles and they then compute and identify what is out there. I don't even bother trying until they start shooting at me... then I take them out or at least try to but like Cody up close and personal is the only way to go and count coup on your foes.

It also helps if your eyeglasses have the correct perscription in them.. even close, they are still fuzzy on the edges. :?
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