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[2.08] New frob shader


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4 hours ago, Sneaker said:

Hmmm, is it planned to "hide" the outline for parts of the object you shouldn't be able to see. I can see outlines of objects through chests and candle outlines can be seen from under desks (attaching screenshot of grate that sinks into floor).

You can set r_frobIgnoreDepth to 0. Note, however, that hiding parts of the outline is technically quite difficult to accomplish, and the solution that I've implemented is not perfect (and can, under certain circumstances, eat up quite a bit of performance).

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If no one else wants to, I could look into creating an outline effect for highlighted objects. Probably after 2.09, though, or as a "late" addition to the beta, at best.

I think there are more interesting ways for the player to interact with the environment than going up to everything and fiddling with it to see if its loot. One of the wonderful things about the old T

This is probably a little too subtle but a slightly yellowish glow would look nice for loot objects IMO.   

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1 hour ago, kingsal said:

Making everything modifiable is a double edge sword sometimes. On one hand it offers creative freedom but on the other it makes it difficult to fix bugs and change features later. That being said I don’t see the harm in allowing authors to set custom frob highlights, perhaps per object. 

That's great to hear. My general stance on this is that it's a bit weird that on one hand you're trying so hard to have the engine compatible with every fan mission ever released, but on the other you're quick to restrict things that are relatively easier to mod, and which can have impact on unique character of a mission. Until recently, you could basically mod the whole GUI, if you felt that it could help match the art style of your mission.

 

34 minutes ago, OrbWeaver said:

And if the frob UI can be configured by the mapper, why not other UI settings too? Perhaps a mapper thinks that their map looks better with bloom enabled, and all players should be forced to have bloom (after all, this is clearly an artistic element of the map)? What about gamma? Can a mapper insist on a super-low brightness setting because they think their map looks artistically better in almost complete darkness?

Answer to all these question is yes. I have certain glowing materials that require bloom to be on, otherwise they look much worse than I intended. Same goes for stuff like darkness, we can already control it with ambient light, and while I wouldn't recommend having no ambient light for main mission, I can see it being useful for stuff like dream sequences, alternate magic worlds etc. It's been done in countless games already, and original Doom3 used complete darkness across the whole game. Whatever goes with gameplay and artistic intent. Obviously, players may tweak things to their liking, but I'd always post recommended settings for a mission, if I have certain things to achieve with that.

Edited by peter_spy
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40 minutes ago, OrbWeaver said:
  1. Clearly there is a line to be drawn between UI elements which should be under the mapper's control and those which should be left to the player. We can disagree about exactly where that line should be,
  2. but I don't think it's very helpful to boil it down to some simplistic morality play about mappers' "artistic choices" being "restricted"
  1. I guess we can agree on that.
  2. and I don't think it is very helpful to boil my comment down to morality play. I haven't had any morality in mind when posting my comment. It is a simple fact that disallowing certain modifications per se restrict the mappers. There might be good reasons to do so, but those should then be brought up to the mapper once necessary, and the mapper should have the choice to decide. That's what beta tests are intented for.
46 minutes ago, OrbWeaver said:

Players' preferences matter too.

That might be true. But players can only modify the game to the degree that they are allowed to via the settings menu, unless you expect the average player to fiddle with the files shipped with TDM or a fm. And in the latter case the player would not be able to modify it more then the mapper can. So I don't really see the point here. We are not talking about player versus mapper modifications.

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4 hours ago, peter_spy said:

Until recently, you could basically mod the whole GUI, if you felt that it could help match the art style of your mission.

Just FYI, the plan isn't to lock down the entire GUI system and honestly, there aren't many authors who wholesale replace GUIs to begin with. However, We're working to find some middle ground here.

All in all, when it comes to messing with cores parts of the mod the teams motto has always been "do so at your own risk". Which to my knowledge hasn't dramatically changed.

@OrbWeaver @peter_spy As far as allowing authors to control player settings and preferences, I did purpose a way for authors to package a "preferred settings" file with their missions. I believe its on the road map somewhere.  

Its unclear exactly how it would work, but once again its a do so at your own risk on the part of the author and player :)

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6 hours ago, kingsal said:

As far as allowing authors to control player settings and preferences, I did purpose a way for authors to package a "preferred settings" file with their missions. I believe its on the road map somewhere.

I think I read about it somewhere (either TDM or modwiki), that you can basically set up a custom-named autocommands.cfg file for your .pk file/mod, so it should be possible to overwrite anything set up in the darkmod.cfg when you start the game. Not sure if or when the original settings are restored (after uninstalling or switching to another mission?) but that would be an important thing too.

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10 hours ago, peter_spy said:

I think I read about it somewhere (either TDM or modwiki), that you can basically set up a custom-named autocommands.cfg file for your .pk file/mod, so it should be possible to overwrite anything set up in the darkmod.cfg when you start the game. Not sure if or when the original settings are restored (after uninstalling or switching to another mission?) but that would be an important thing too.

Yes, you can. Players will hate you for it, 'though, myself included! :-D The settings are not going to be restored afterwards and I even think at some point we planned to add an automatic suppression of an autoexec.cfg shipped with an FM. (I think Bikerdude had one of those)

Some people get dizzy from motion blur, some people get headaches from bloom and bright colors, some people are color blind, some people simply have a bad monitory or bad lighting conditions in their room so that they have to significantly increase brightness/gamma. For the sake of accessibility, basic UI and graphical features have to be player configurable and not be decided by a mapper. And who is to say that we are not going to offer a proper configuration menu for the frob highlight? 

In my initial proposal, I suggested to implement the GLSL-frobhighlight in such a way, that the actual GLSL-shaders can be swapped. This is not (yet?) the case, as that much flexibility is usually costly, but this would actually allow mappers to ship their own implementation with their map while the player could still chose to disable that and use one of the base implementations. 

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On 5/29/2021 at 5:17 PM, Obsttorte said:

In addition: who is "the majority"?! I can only see roughly half a dozen team members having discussed this matter. I am pretty sure the team consist out of more then just those few.

We had a lengthy discussion about it in the internal forums. You cannot expect us to hold back on any decisions until even those members that log in like twice a year commented on it. If we did that, this project would not have progressed as it did over its 15 years of existance.

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6 minutes ago, STiFU said:

Yes, you can. Players will hate you for it, 'though, myself included! :-D The settings are not going to be restored afterwards and I even think at some point we planned to add an automatic suppression of an autoexec.cfg shipped with an FM.

That's a bummer, and a no-go. I wouldn't want to mess up anyone's config file. So the only right way would be to post the cvar values in the readme, with a note that this what you need to do to experience the FM the way author intended.

12 minutes ago, STiFU said:

Some people get dizzy from motion blur, some people get headaches from bloom and bright colors, some people are color blind, some people simply have a bad monitory or bad lighting conditions in their room so that they have to significantly increase brightness/gamma. For the sake of accessibility, basic UI and graphical features have to be player configurable and not be decided by a mapper.

No disagreement from me here, although it's hard to draw a distinctive line here when it comes to all the graphics features. Motion blur, brightness settings, sure. Interface elements? Toggling on and off, why not, although if you have a diegetic interface, that's a nope. And the interactive object highlight is kinda 'in the world', but also an artificial construct. And it is a part of art direction, I have no doubts about it, just look at all the games from Bioshocks to the aforementioned DXHR or MD.

Bloom settings are also kinda hard to gauge, like I can 100% assure you that if you turn the bloom and 64-bit color off, you'll be missing out on the intended look of the assets I make. I'm not saying that you shouldn't be able to turn it off though.

I know that flashing lights can lead to epilepsy, but I think this is mostly not applicable to TDM due to slow gameplay. Although I understand that flickering electric lights will give some people hell. I don't like them myself tbh, and I only use them in low contrast situations. At the same time, I wouldn't want to take that feature away from mappers.

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35 minutes ago, peter_spy said:

That's a bummer, and a no-go. I wouldn't want to mess up anyone's config file. So the only right way would be to post the cvar values in the readme, with a note that this what you need to do to experience the FM the way author intended.

I would recommend a briefing video with a short disclaimer at the end: "This mission is best enjoyed with bloom and 64-bit color". Something like that is very common in video games "best played with controller", "best played with headphones", etc.

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I would prefer such an information better somewhere else than in the briefing video. For me the video helps to "get in the mood" of immersing myself and such a disclaimer at the end would disturb that. Even at the beginning, I would either immediately or after the video have to check my settings, which also disturbs the mood. A seperate info (e.g. in the level description) would be better, although I am aware that it is easily missed that way.

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Btw these are the settings I purposed for the outer glow if anyone is interested. Its fairly subtle.

However, this is using the old frob highlight. 

    r_frobOutlineColorA = ".8" (could be controlled in settings to players liking)
    r_frobOutlineColorB = "0.67"
    r_frobOutlineColorG = "0.55"
    r_frobOutlineColorR = "0.6"

newjob_2021-04-20_11_09_20.thumb.jpg.3948d9cfb29cc2b4a3f84b55384cf479.jpg

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16 minutes ago, kingsal said:

Btw these are the settings I purposed for the outer glow if anyone is interested. Its fairly subtle.

However, this is using the old frob highlight. 

    r_frobOutlineColorA = ".8" (could be controlled in settings to players liking)
    r_frobOutlineColorB = "0.67"
    r_frobOutlineColorG = "0.55"
    r_frobOutlineColorR = "0.6"

newjob_2021-04-20_11_09_20.thumb.jpg.3948d9cfb29cc2b4a3f84b55384cf479.jpg

+1 to making the transparency a menu setting. As for the color I'm not sure about that default: I believe it should be pure white, or if anything a slightly blue tint (eg: RGB 0.6 0.8 1.0).

I wonder though if maybe the color should depend on the type of entity being frobbed. Like green for doors, gold for loot, blue for in-world decorations you can move around, etc. Obviously as a spawnarg on the definitions of items, root defs can customize it then so every derivative can inherit it without leaving existing FM's out.

Edited by MirceaKitsune
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4 minutes ago, MirceaKitsune said:

+1 to making the transparency a menu setting. As for the color I'm not sure about that default: I believe it should be pure white, or if anything a slightly blue tint (eg: RGB 0.6 0.8 1.0).

Mine is a slight blue tint at 0.67 0.55 0.6 . Your value is more green than anything with a green value of 0.8

We've discussed having it based on entity type, but its not the focus at the moment.

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1 hour ago, kingsal said:

Mine is a slight blue tint at 0.67 0.55 0.6 . Your value is more green than anything with a green value of 0.8

We've discussed having it based on entity type, but its not the focus at the moment.

Fair enough. Out of curiosity, how does it compare with a more standard blue? Could you share with something like 0.4 0.5 0.6? That looks good too and I don't mind either way, feels pleasant and at the right brightness.

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4 hours ago, MirceaKitsune said:

Fair enough. Out of curiosity, how does it compare with a more standard blue? Could you share with something like 0.4 0.5 0.6? That looks good too and I don't mind either way, feels pleasant and at the right brightness.

You can actually just grab the latest developer build  and punch in the cvars in the console https://forums.thedarkmod.com/index.php?/topic/20824-public-access-to-development-versions/

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You can also modify the r_frobHighlightColorAddR/G/B values for the blend add highlight, so you can make it stronger, change its color or make it disappear completely and use the outline alone.

Also a strong vote on NO on needlessly overcomplicating things and introducing different color highlights per object type. IMO big part of im-sims is player experimentation and discovering things for yourself, the look of the items alone should let you gauge whether something is loot or just a bg object. That should be systemic and the responsibility falls on mappers and content creators, not on UI auto-hinting you that.

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37 minutes ago, peter_spy said:

You can also modify the r_frobHighlightColorAddR/G/B values for the blend add highlight, so you can make it stronger, change its color or make it disappear completely and use the outline alone.

Also a strong vote on NO on needlessly overcomplicating things and introducing different color highlights per object type. IMO big part of im-sims is player experimentation and discovering things for yourself, the look of the items alone should let you gauge whether something is loot or just a bg object. That should be systemic and the responsibility falls on mappers and content creators, not on UI auto-hinting you that.

Players frequently critisized that they could not properly distinguish loot from junk, which is partly due to inconsistent design of models. Pretty much everybody in the team is against a general loot glint (as in TDS), but another proposed option was to change the frob highlight for loot to something more gold-like. Of course, this should remain an optional feature, but I personally like it a lot. It is like, the thief visually inspects the object when close enough and the game tells you whether the object has any value or not.

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Or the value in digits in view, where junk gets 0 ? I mean when you pick something up of worth, you immediatally get the worth added to your total. Might as well tell you before the frob.

Edit: Actually in hindsight, I disagree with my own idea.

Edited by datiswous
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6 hours ago, STiFU said:

Of course, this should remain an optional feature, but I personally like it a lot. It is like, the thief visually inspects the object when close enough and the game tells you whether the object has any value or not.

That removes the pleasure of doing it yourself. Stating the obvious here, but one of the cool things that design can do is that it can make you feel smart, even if you're just being guided by developers. Separate loot highlight is another in-your-face solution, while distinct materials for loot items (d/n/s + cubemap for silver, gold, etc.) as opposed to duller ones for e.g. wooden goblets would be more subtle and less hand-holding.

I have no problem with it being an optional thing and off by default, but it also kinda looks like you're trying to compensate for poor asset design with the UI.

Edited by peter_spy
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24 minutes ago, peter_spy said:

 Separate loot highlight is another in-your-face solution, while distinct materials for loot items (d/n/s + cubemap for silver, gold, etc.) as opposed to duller ones for e.g. wooden goblets would be more subtle and less hand-holding.

It would be, but that's not the situation we have.  Our models come from a dozen different sources with different styles, and people have added loot entities to the core mod throughout history without any concern for consistency--loot paintings (that are worth as much as 10 other pieces of loot) that look exactly the same as non-loot paintings are an obvious example.

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There is one very good reason for wanting different frob appearances for loot and regular objects:

 

"Hmm... is this copper goblet loot or not? Let's pick it up to find out. Oh, it isn't loot, it's just a carriable goblet. Guess I'll just quietly put it down somewhere..."

BANG CLATTER THUMP RATTLE ALL THE GUARDS ARE ALERTED

 

I think the thief himself would know before grabbing whether he would want to keep it as loot or not, and I have no issue for that to be communicated to the player.

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24 minutes ago, thebigh said:

"Hmm... is this copper goblet loot or not? Let's pick it up to find out. Oh, it isn't loot, it's just a carriable goblet. Guess I'll just quietly put it down somewhere..."

BANG CLATTER THUMP RATTLE ALL THE GUARDS ARE ALERTED

Exactly!
That's the main reason why I like the idea of different colors.
Although it is quite likely that another change will diminish this problem.
I was thinking about candles, which are moveable depending on author's preference.

UPDATE: Also, I have seen some maps where bottles and plates were loot, while they did not look like that. Having different highlight color will help with it.

As for customization of frob effect, I think anything beyond "change color" or "occlude or not" would require additional code and complexity in the engine.

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56 minutes ago, stgatilov said:

UPDATE: Also, I have seen some maps where bottles and plates were loot, while they did not look like that. Having different highlight color will help with it.

While I don't have a particular opinion on this topic at large, this is true. I think in Lord Edgar's Bathhouse, one piece of loot was a plain old green wine bottle. I recently replayed the mission, and it took me an ungodly amount of time to stumble upon it to meet the quota.

And as mentioned, paintings are the worst when it comes to this, no real way of figuring out which ones are loot and which aren't. I especially like it when I forget to frob all of them from the get-go and later realize some of them are in fact loot, so now I have to hunt all of them down again.

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14 minutes ago, kingsal said:

This is probably a little too subtle but a slightly yellowish glow would look nice for loot objects IMO.

Looks perfect to me. It doesn't need to be glaring, just give loot and keys a yellow outline to distinguish them from non-treasure frobbables.

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