[Release] Trails v1.11

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Re: [Release] Trails v1.2

Post by vsfc » Tue Jun 23, 2015 10:43 am

Changing it to grey is a good idea!

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Re: [Release] Trails v1.3

Post by Norby » Wed Feb 03, 2016 2:07 pm

After this report v1.3 of [wiki]Trails[/wiki] is released:
-Rocks make gray vapour when move.
-Speedup for explosions: wreckages make rare trails only.
-General speedup due to less flashers (half than before).
-Another speedup on trails over 12km.
-Default of MinFPS is increased to 25 FPS.
-Fixed an oddity with Telescope.

I have plans to reduce entity usage and make time based lifetime just need time to implement.

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Re: [Release] Trails v1.5

Post by Norby » Wed Feb 03, 2016 6:16 pm

v1.4:
-Wreckages, alloys and cargopods are excluded for speed up explosions.
-Increase quality back to normal over 50 FPS and not the double of MinFPS.

v1.5:
-Sparks in Griff Alloys and Wreckage OXP are excluded for explosions.

This should fix explosions at most people.

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Re: [Release] Trails v1.5

Post by ihaveamo » Sat Feb 06, 2016 11:04 am

Yes, 1.5 has fixed the explosion slowdowns for me. Thanks, Norby!

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Re: [Release] Trails v1.5

Post by ffutures » Sat Feb 06, 2016 11:06 pm

It's very pretty but I think it unbalances game play a bit - it's much easier to spot ships at long distance (usually the only clue is laser fire), and I destroyed one after it went outside the 25K limit because I could still see where it was from the trail. It's also causing occasional stuttering if I'm really close to an enemy. I'll give it a try for a while, but I think I'll probably end up uninstalling it.

Making it a lot less visible at long range would help for game balance, but I don't know what would help the stuttering side of things - I think it's simply a bit too much for my computer.

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Re: [Release] Trails v1.6

Post by Norby » Sat Feb 13, 2016 3:11 pm

Trails v1.6 contain improved lookout:
-Time-based trail dissipation so trail length is depending on speed.
-Less visible trails at long range.
-Thinner trail on small ships.
-Missiles are excluded.

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Re: [Release] Trails v1.6

Post by ihaveamo » Sun Feb 14, 2016 8:14 am

Thanks, Norby!

Trails are looking better and better!

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Re: [Release] Trails v1.7

Post by Norby » Sun Feb 14, 2016 2:41 pm

Thank you!

Trails v1.7 contain a new method to handle low FPS.

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Re: [Release] Trails v1.7

Post by another_commander » Sun Feb 14, 2016 5:45 pm

The effect looks now very good, except when the trails go parallel to the player and side views are used. Then you can see the flashers clearly separated. Still, overall it looks very nice.

FPS is still a problem at low-end systems though. Without the OXP, I see 40-60 FPS while in space with various things happening and with Griff's normal mapped ships and Zygo's skies + Povray planets. With the OXP installed, I see a maximum of 30, which can drop to as low as 15 if more than one ships leaving trails are around. This is on an NVidia 9600M GT, Core2Duo 2GHz laptop. The OXP basically raises the requirements of the system running it. It would be nice to try and test it on a high end system to compare the performance impact.

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Re: [Release] Trails v1.7

Post by Cody » Sun Feb 14, 2016 6:55 pm

another_commander wrote:It would be nice to try and test it on a high end system to compare the performance impact.
Not exactly high-end: my nVidia GTX 770 SC 2GB i5-4670K 4@3.4 plus everything Griffed to the hilt and oodles of rocks usually runs unflinchingly at 75fps, but with Trails v1.7 installed and plenty of bandits I get this (down as low as 24/26 and up to 45/50 and extra CPU usage) - a serious performance hit, is that!

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Re: [Release] Trails v1.7

Post by Norby » Sun Feb 14, 2016 7:07 pm

another_commander wrote:-except when the trails go parallel to the player
-FPS is still a problem at low-end systems
These are mutually exclusive: the better appearance need more flashers which drain more FPS.

Trails switch between 3 different quality settings depending on FPS, each use 2 times less flasher but 2 times thicker than the previous one to keep up continuity:
Image
Image
Image
2x zoom at the end of tails:
Image
Image
Image
4x zoom:
Image
Image
Image

The first is good in side views but need good hardware if there are many ships around.
The last is the minimum without making trails wider than most ships, used if your FPS was below 25 once and since then can not step over 50.

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Re: [Release] Trails v1.7

Post by ffutures » Sun Feb 14, 2016 8:10 pm

That seems to be a lot better, though I won't know for sure until I get into a big fight - at the moment I'm near the end of long a run and don't have much aboard to attract the usual suspects.

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Re: [Release] Trails v1.8

Post by Norby » Mon Feb 15, 2016 7:00 pm

Cody wrote:plenty of bandits
I got a new idea from your screenshot: if only those trails are created which is actually within the current view then other ships will not make load on the hardware. I predicted that too often creation is slower than if just moved very far from the rendered scene so I made a new version with this feature. Looks pretty effective at me: FPS jump up from 10 to 50 when I turn away from a few dozen ships.

Unfortunately I can not read the actual FOV in js so I assume the maximum (80 degree). I left in a very minor effect: in 16:9 screens the trail elements are moved from the corners in max. FOV, almost unnoticeable so just a proof of the feature but save some power. In normal FOV still more is rendered than you can view.

In v1.8:
-Render trail elements in sight and within 15km only, others moved far away.
-Lifetime of elements start at 9 seconds and step down to 5 seconds in low-FPS.

Speed tests are welcomed, thank you for the posted ones.

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Re: [Release] Trails v1.8

Post by Cody » Mon Feb 15, 2016 7:40 pm

Had a quick look, and though the fps drop seems better, it's still taking a hit. I'll find a large bunch of bandits later for a better comparison.
Normal CPU usage in Oolite is 10-15% - this rises to about 25-28% when Trails v1.8 is active.

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Re: [Release] Trails v1.8

Post by another_commander » Mon Feb 15, 2016 7:41 pm

Results on NVidia 9600M GT, Core2Duo 2GHz:
Image

Image

Image

Image

Overall impression is that this is an improvement compared to the previous version in terms of performance, but I feel that somewhere, somehow, there is something about the effect that makes me prefer its appearance on its earlier incarnation. Still, with more than three ships in view, things get bad FPS-wise pretty quickly. Note the large number of entities present in some of these shots. Note also that the third shot is at 30fps (forgot to switch on the counter display).

In my opinion, this is probably as good as you can get it using flashers and JS. I think that an effect like this can only have continuously acceptable performance if implemented via shader(s) and core particle effects. Good job, it certainly makes for some impressive snapshots.

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