Here's the rocket trail.
It occurred to me that I talked a lot about how subtle the effects were but then I went and posted shots of the two most OTT. This is more indicative of what things are like (the corona around the rocket is an option that has always been there, by the way).
Previous screenshots were from an earlier, more heavyweight implementation; I've since switched them to using instancing and put the billboarding calculations on the GPU, so the framerates in the older shots are somewhat lower than what it's getting now.
One of the hardest things about a custom particle system is finding good textures. I've been raiding a lot of sources and experimenting with different configurations. One of the best is free libraries of PhotoShop brushes; there's some great stuff in those.
The current status is:
Blood Splashes: Done but might need toning down a little.
Blood Trail: Done, nice. Colour might need some adjusting.
Rocket Trail: Done, nice.
Grenade Trail: Done, nice.
Lava Splash: Done, nice.
Teleport Splash: Done, texture is crap, need a better one.
Wizard Trail: Done, nice.
Knight Trail: Done, nice effect but slightly questionable - is it too much? Colour is off.
Vore Trail: Done, nice. Might need bringing up a little (hard-ish to see).
Point File: Done. Effect not important, you just need to be able to see them. Should this even be done with particles?
Entity Particles: Unsure - leave as dots?
Bullets/Spikes Hitting Walls: Done. Should the colour be changed?
Explosions: Not started.
Generic Effect/Other: Leave as dots?
Explosions need some further comment. It was rightly pointed out in a comment that the standard explosion sprite is crap, and I'm agonising over whether or not to remove it, or to provide an option to remove it, when the new system is used (the old one will keep it).
On the one hand, yes, it's crap, and that provides the argument in favour of removing it. On the other hand it's game content, and it's become something of a rule of mine that the engine should not mess with game content.
The big trouble here is: I can only reliably identify the sprite by it's name. What if a mod includes an alternative explosion sprite with the same name? I'm going against the way the modder wants their content to be presented. What if a mod uses a sprite of the same name for something else? That would make removing it even worse.
On balance I think removing it is by far the greater evil. That raises the question: what to do with the explosion effects in the new system? Right now I'm thinking to add some smoke and keep the flying sparks, but give them a slightly different texture and reduce their number a little.
Monday, October 3, 2011
Here's the rocket trail.
Posted by mhquake at 11:45 PM