Sunday, April 13, 2008

The 'Lump' takes shape...

Remember that somewhat aircraft-ish looking picture in my previous post? Well she's come a fair ways in 4 nights of work. I dare say she's almost looking like an L-39 now. Check it out...




She's currently clocking in at around 4500 polygons. To put that in perspective the default Douglas DC-3 in FSX is around 15000 polygons and it renders *incredibly* quickly. Granted there's no cockpit, pilots (expensive!) or gear wells yet, and all the linkages are missing, but I'm hoping to get the external model done in less than 20k polys if I can. If that's doable and I don't go too nuts with the textures it should pose a very light hit in multiplayer. That's my primary goal anyway. I want this plane to be as suitable for large formation/display team flying as the Marchetti is.

Back to the grind! :)

13 comments:

Mugar17 said...

I can't wait!

d0ugi3 said...

Awesome

Lotus / Ramasurinen said...

Thanks guys. As for a wait, it'll be a long one hehe. My prediction is six to ten months to finish it. This is the easy part, so it'll go relatively quickly at first. Should have a finished model done in a couple weeks, but after that the real challenges start. :)

Mugar17 said...

in 6 to 10 months I'll prbably be thinking:
look at these awesome screen shots in flight sim 2008!

Lotus / Ramasurinen said...

Not much chance of that actually. I'd be very surprised to see FS11 released before december 2009, more likely spring 2010.

Vlad said...

That's awesome!!! But why would it take ten months? Is it the Cockpit that will take a lot if time, or is the textures? Can't wait!:O

Sundowner said...

At the tip of the nose, did you squashed all vertexes into one place ? How about using NURMS ? That would give nice round nose... good on video closeups ;)

pebble said...

I don't believe FSX handles anything like NURMs or NURBs, only straight polymeshes, and probably only triangles at that.

Lotus, that plane reminds me a bit of the Skyhawk, just proportioned differently.

Vlad said...

Very true, Pebble:

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/6/6e/Aero_L-39_ALBATROSS.png
http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/9/9c/McDONNELL_DOUGLAS_A-4_SKYHAWK.png

But the Skyhawk has a very nice power plant. The two different engines have an lbf ratio of 1:3. The Pratt & Whitney J52-P-408 will surely force the L-39 into biting the dust. ;)

Lotus / Ramasurinen said...

Sundowner, Peb's right, it's all triangles in the end, it's all a videocard can ultimately understand. You can use high order surfaces to model a plane but given the fairly low poly budget you'll end up having to convert it to polys and rez it down eventually.

And it'll take six to ten months because there are so many layers to making a functional airplane work in FSX: external model, vc, clickspots, animated buttons and surfaces, materials, sound configuration, sound recordings, textures, gauge programming, animated pilots, the list goes on. It all has to be made from scratch.

Vlad said...

How will you record every little sound of gauges/stall warning/landing sound/etc.? It's not like you own one of these.

... do you? :D

Sundowner said...

The NURBS would be only used to make the shape, than converted to editable poly and welded with the rest of fuselage. Here's a tutorial, that shows what I'm talking about:

Link to tutorial

I had some problems with skinning aircrafts that were made simply by the cylinder method, I think this could solve some of them - I'll be using that in the Sikorsky I'm working on, it took me nearly a week of trial and error and I think I finely found good method to do it.... without the primitives. Just like in CAD Solid Works, I'm doing it with the Surface Modeling.

Lotus / Ramasurinen said...

Yup, I'm familiar with nurbs and patch modeling, but I'm old school. I like placing every poly I need by hand, it minimizes the waste and makes it easy to correct problems in the model. :)

As for the sounds I'll probably end up doing what most do, hire Chris Petersen to make them. It's what he does and he does it very well. I'll cross that bridge when I come to it though, it'll be one of the last things that goes into the plane. ;)