Demonstration Ages

If you feel like you're up to the challenge of building your own Ages in Blender or 3ds Max, this is the place for you!

Demonstration Ages

Postby JulyForToday » Mon Aug 31, 2020 12:21 pm

:!: See the next post for the introduction to this thread :arrow:


I'm using this first post as a sort of repository for these ages.

KORMAN MATERIALS DEMONSTRATION AGE (age prefix sequence 730)
version 0.0
[.download blend file] [download .age files (PoTS/CC)]
Image

Although I've made it presentable, it's still preliminary, since there are a handful of things that are not working correctly, or as I intended.
These are as follows:
  • PassIndex demo broken (I've used this setting to fix undesirable ordering and I know it works. But here I am trying to purposefully get it drawing out of order to demonstrate the feature, and it refuses -- murphy's law, heh)
  • Animated sprite demo is broken (can Korman export animation curves using constant interpolation?)
  • Planar reflections may not work (I've tried setting them up, but they don't work in PoTS, so I don't know if the setup is right)
  • Masked alpha demo broken (not sure if there is actually an option for this -- might be removed)
  • Demo using vertex colors as transparency is not implemented (unsure if possible)
  • Normal Map demo not implemented (possible, but no way to do it?)
  • Lamp Flare 'skip depth test' setting allows the flare to draw on top of other objects when the center is visible (good) but always in front of the avatar (bad)
  • Still some z fighting in the glass material

KORMAN CLICKABLES DEMONSTRATION AGE (age prefix sequence 735)
version 0.1
[.download blend file] [download .age files (PoTS/CC)]
Image

I will be editing this original post as I have update/changes/releases.
Last edited by JulyForToday on Mon Sep 07, 2020 2:56 pm, edited 5 times in total.
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Re: Demonstration Ages

Postby JulyForToday » Mon Aug 31, 2020 12:36 pm

As I've come across snags while Age building recently, I found myself wishing there were a more sample ages like the camera sample age (also referenced in the wiki page on Korman:Cameras).

I've been making small test ages for certain groups of features as I was trying to get familiar with Korman, and think I should clean them up and have them as a repository that anyone can refer to when they are looking to implement a feature they aren't familiar with.

Also I was recently looking at a game engine (Unigine) and was really impressed with their engine demonstration / sample scenes.
It was such a nice way to see the features of the engine demonstrated; granular yet accessible.

Image

So I thought about setting something like that up for Uru, but with the additional benefit that they serve as references for how a desired feature can be implemented (since you can peek into the blend file), and as tests whether features are actually functioning as they should in Uru.

Sample Ages already existing:

Here is a list of demonstration ages I was thinking of putting together:
  • Materials (specular, alpha blending, envmaps, uv animation, planar reflections, waveset)
  • Lighting (lightmaps, light texture projection)
  • Animation (animated button, control of multiple keyframe animations, script controlled, path following, creatures/npcs)
  • Particles (rain,fire,steam,smoke, sparks, dynamic decals)
  • Sound (complex softvolume setup for sound, EAX usage)
  • Clickables (journals, linking books, notes, sitting, button)
  • Mechanical (ladders, standard doors, sliding doors, pressure plates, levers, elevators & moving platforms, maybe vehicles)
  • Python (some more advanced usage including SDL)
  • LargeWorld (split into prp and using visiblity & LOD)

I cleaned up and made presentable the first on that list:
KormanMaterials (as posted above)
Hope the name is not overstepping. (I can change it if wanted)
Also wasn't sure what the best Sequence Prefix number was to give this, so I set it to use (sp 730) which is 12 numbers after KormanNodes01 (sp 718).

I used blender text objects for all the text. There is a layer with all the text converted to meshes (since Korman discards the text objects).
Also tried to keep the .blend file size as small as possible. Most of the size comes from using un-instanced meshes of the material tester object, and from all the text meshes.



I welcome any feedback or suggestions for improving this particular demo age, or any ideas on other demo ages (or how I'm grouping / naming things).

I am currently cleaning up my clickable demo age, and (trying) to work on the 'Mechanical' demo age (subworlds being the stumbling block there).

[edit: added a lighting age to the list]
Last edited by JulyForToday on Mon Sep 07, 2020 1:48 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Demonstration Ages

Postby Sirius » Mon Aug 31, 2020 1:15 pm

Oh, this is a really good idea. (Maybe there could be a Wiki page dedicated to listing all the existing example files, too ? Might be useful.)

I've been wanting to create a demo file for tips on setting up puzzles of varying complexity (kinda like Clickable/Mechanical/Python). But I eventually got stuck on controlling multiple animations, so I gave up and focused on other projects instead.
If you ever need help figuring out Node Trees and Python scripts, create a new topic and I'll do what I can to help ! :)

The only suggestion I have is about vehicles. If you're talking about the Zandoni, this will probably deserve its own demo file once Korman supports it. Not only is the setup a bit complex (from what I can remember, although that might change in Korman), but it's interesting to have a big terrain to test various incline, road types, suspensions, wheel configuration, etc. I bet those will affect handling a lot, even on an engine as simple as Plasma.
Oh, and maybe add in a few ramps, all in the name of science of course :lol:
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Re: Demonstration Ages

Postby ametist » Tue Sep 01, 2020 6:28 am

JulyForToday, great work! :) Example blend files is good tools for learning. I agree with Sirius here, a wiki page would be a good place for such blend files.

You asked about KormanNodes01 - that is a blend file that TsarHoikas made when I asked for some help with how to properly connect korman nodes to python and SDL. You can find it in this thread here: https://forum.guildofwriters.org/viewtopic.php?f=9&t=7111&start=10
I can confirm it works with korman 0.10.
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Re: Demonstration Ages

Postby Doobes » Tue Sep 01, 2020 7:38 am

This is fantastic, JulyForToday! This actually cleared up a couple of things even I was a bit confused about.

While we do have pages for materials and textures, I'm all for creating a page solely to list out example blends whilst also adding URLs to them in the existing tutorials.

Keep up the good work, JFT! :D

Edit: I see there was question of texture projection like the Great Zero beam. I've actually gotten that working quite well, and you can see the examples of it working in the revamped Watcher's Pub and the new GoMe Pub on MOULa.

In short, you simply need a lamp with an attached texture (although it's not required) and the "Cast RT Shadow" Korman mod. Also, the lamp needs at least one keyframe of animation or it won't appear.

Yes, it's a tutorial I mean to write up at one point too. ;)

Edit 2: And here it is: https://guildofwriters.org/wiki/Korman:Great_Zero_Beam
Last edited by Doobes on Fri Sep 04, 2020 5:35 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Demonstration Ages

Postby Paradox » Tue Sep 01, 2020 8:15 am

JFT, this is great! :o

Normal/bump mapping is possible in Korman, but I never got around to writing up the instructions for how to set it up.
The short answer is that under the Texture tab, Influence panel, uncheck "Diffuse: Color" and check "Geometry: Normal". I'll try to get a wiki page up in the near future.

For textures with alpha, it's also possible to make those preview more accurately in the Blender 3D view:
Under the Texture tab, Influence panel, check both "Diffuse: Color" and "Diffuse: Alpha". Then on the Material tab, check the "Transparency" panel to enable it, and lower the "Alpha" slider to 0.
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Re: Demonstration Ages

Postby JulyForToday » Tue Sep 01, 2020 3:14 pm

Heya Paradox! :)

Paradox wrote:Normal/bump mapping is possible in Korman, but I never got around to writing up the instructions for how to set it up.
The short answer is that under the Texture tab, Influence panel, uncheck "Diffuse: Color" and check "Geometry: Normal". I'll try to get a wiki page up in the near future.


I gave it a quick try and it didn't seem to work. Not sure what crucial thing I might be missing.
I looked at Kemo's walkway, and noticed they used a bunch of textures with LUT in the names. Not sure if something like that is needed.
I tried using the walkway normal map too, in case there was something particular with that image that they were using.

No luck. :(


Doobes wrote: In short, you simply need a lamp with an attached texture (although it's not required) and the "Cast RT Shadow" Korman mod. Also, the lamp needs at least one keyframe of animation or it won't appear.


Thanks for the tip Doobes! I vaguely remembered something about using textures with lights from long ago, but wasn't sure if I misremembered.
I'll have to try that out when I get some more time.
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Re: Demonstration Ages

Postby Paradox » Tue Sep 01, 2020 5:56 pm

JulyForToday wrote:Heya Paradox! :)

Paradox wrote:Normal/bump mapping is possible in Korman, but I never got around to writing up the instructions for how to set it up.
The short answer is that under the Texture tab, Influence panel, uncheck "Diffuse: Color" and check "Geometry: Normal". I'll try to get a wiki page up in the near future.


I gave it a quick try and it didn't seem to work. Not sure what crucial thing I might be missing.
I looked at Kemo's walkway, and noticed they used a bunch of textures with LUT in the names. Not sure if something like that is needed.
I tried using the walkway normal map too, in case there was something particular with that image that they were using.

No luck. :(


Those LUT textures should be automatically generated by korman at export time.
Plasma's bumpmapping only shows up when there are lamps around the object, and really only has a good effect when the lamp is animated.
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Re: Demonstration Ages

Postby Doobes » Fri Sep 04, 2020 5:37 am

Bumping to post about the new GZ beam tutorial: https://guildofwriters.org/wiki/Korman:Great_Zero_Beam
KI #s: MOULa - 6302, Minkata - 35287, Gehn - 14291,
TOC - 82340, DI - 44387
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Re: Demonstration Ages

Postby JulyForToday » Sat Sep 05, 2020 2:37 pm

Okay, so I did get the bump mapping working. The key point was the animated light. It was not working at all before I set one of those up.

Image

Normal map limitations I encountered:
  • requires a light to be animated (energy) to appear (doesn't even need to change, just have an animation curve)
  • generally you want a texture layer with a diffuse color texture undernearth (using just a normal map layer results in an almost entirely transparent mesh with some slight highlights from the normal map -- maybe useful in a glass material?)
  • a material with a normal map can only be applied to one object. You need to use a unique copy of the material for each object you want to apply it to (you can't share the material between 2 different objects, only 1 will actually work)
  • must be placed below any stencil layers (otherwise the material will have a strong pink discoloration)
  • the effect itself looks very 'flat' and doesn't interact with the specular lighting (as such, it doesn't give the kind of realistic looking effects modern engines get from the use of normal maps)

This is the first time I have been able to get a normal map into the game. So until now I couldn't judge.
The effect itself is fairly lacking. This is not a surprise, but it's goes a long way to explaining why Cyan didn't make heavy use of it.
I can see it having some good applications (makes sense they would use it for Kemo's walkways), it's just doesn't have the "use it everywhere" applicability that normal maps have these days.

I wanted to try taking a modern asset and getting it into Uru, see how good I could make it look. (grabbed one from cgtrader)

Image

This is using 4 of the texture maps provided with that asset (albedo, normal, roughness, ao, scaled from the original 4096 down to 1024).
It has 6 layers in the material (including a very transparent envmap, and a dirt texture for the rusty/rough parts)
Image

The specular in Blender is super exaggerated (trying to make it have good values for Plasma, not Blender), but you can see the way the normal map gives a bunch of detail to the specular highlights.
In Uru, the bump mapping is barely doing anything (the ao map does hide a lot of it, but it's just really weak to begin with).

Using the roughness map as a stencil to a rough dirt/rust texture over the shiny diffuse texture is what gives most of the visual pop to the material in Uru. If you ditch the normal map, envmap, and baking the ao into the diffuse map would get you mostly the same thing. (unless you want something super polished reflective metal, like the doors in Gehn's Lab in Riven, then keep the envmap -- I'm using like 5% opacity here, so it's very faint)

Also, when you have a light source moving around the object, the bump mapping 'shadow' doesn't travel in a circle, but rather seems to swap back and forth.

Image




Doobes wrote:Bumping to post about the new GZ beam tutorial: https://guildofwriters.org/wiki/Korman:Great_Zero_Beam

Sweet. Thanks for the tutorial. I'll try setting up a demo for that next.
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