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realSKY Environment
January 13th, 2019 (1st Release)
by Menrva

>For Strike Fighters 2 games
This is my sky enhancement mod. It also combines the work of many other modders, in order to provide a realistic, better looking sky. Here below a quick summary of the changes:
-Tweaked sky colours, something in between Cellinsky's widesky and the stock SF2 colours.
-More realistic Night colours, sky and ambient are much darker.
-More atmospheric, reddish transition from Twilight to Night.
-New "dark blue" High Altitude colours (fly near space with a NF-104).
-Moon produces a yellowish light instead of the default purple.
-Sky is "wider" much like Cellinsky's widesky mod (background horizon clouds are bigger and more noticeable).
-Added beautiful cloud graphics made by Cellinsky and ShrikeHawk, tweaked for each weather type.
-Added a low number of stray clouds to Clear weather.
-Added noticeable clouds to Overcast weather and Inclement weather, "fixing" a known SF2 "bug".
-Combined various mods to produce a more interesting Rain Effect under Inclement weather.
-Added Stary's lens flare effects from the SARCASM 2 mod, in place of Cellinsky's widesky effects.
-Added Cloud Layer graphics by Stary, Fubar512 and Brain32.
-Reworked secondary atmospheric effects, such as contrails and wingtip vortexes.

In addition, the package includes alternative environment configuration files in the Alternative Weather folder; they enable different effects for the Inclement weather. You can choose between thunderstorm (default, adapt for most terrains), snowstorm (for cold, icy terrains) and sandstorm (for hot, desert terrains).
For those who wish not to change the effect globally, I highly suggest to try the included terrain-specific environment files, provided for both stock terrains and custom ones I released; the default global effect is thunderstorm, while terrains with their own environment file either use sandstorm or snowstorm as appropriate. Use this as a basis to customize other terrains.

By setting the Effects to Unlimited, the game makes use of a DirectX 10 post processing effect; the stock game's post processing shader generates a pointless and horrible bloom effect which excessively blinds the player during twilight transitions.
By default, realSKY includes a reworked post processing shader (TWPOSTPROCESS.FX) which provides more contrast, more vignetting, minor color correction and a daytime-only bloom effect, so it's miles better than what the stock game offers. Alternative post processing tweaks are included in the Alternative Shaders folder; choose the one you wish to try (check the included screenshots for fast comparisons) and overwrite the default one in your mod's Flight folder.
If you don't care about the post processing effect, you may want to set the game's Effects to High in the Options menu.


>Credits (in no particular order):
-Cellinsky, for his fantastic widesky mod from which I borrowed some tweaks.
-Stary, for his Thunderstorm and Heavy Snowfall weather mods, and his SARCASM 2 beta mod from which I borrowed some effects.
-PanamaRed, for tweaks in regards to Clouds (especially the Broken weather ones).
-Fubar512 and Brain32, for their Cloud Layer Top bitmaps, which I have smoothed for a better looking effect.
-ShrikeHawk, for his CloudSkins mods, from which I took the spectacular cloud graphics.
-BearGryllis, for his Thunderstorm Pack With Enhanced Lightnings 2.0b package.
-Orsin, for his Improved Rain Effect and Heavy Rain 0.8 mods.
-luk1978, for his interesting WeatherEffect package.
-ArmedLightning, for his Special FX v2.2 mod for the GTR 2 game, from which I borrowed a lens flare effect.
-baffmeister, for the idea of recreating sandstorm weather effects.
-tiopilotos, for suggesting improvements on other subjects.
-Eagle114th, for his Improved Wingtip Vortex mod which I have reworked.
-JosefK, guuruu and Coupi, for their interest and support.

I included the original readme files from the mentioned mods, where available, to the end of giving proper credit to everyone involved directly or not.


>Disclaimer:
This is a freeware; yet it can be redistributed ONLY in other CombatACE mods/mod packages.
This mod may NOT in any way, shape or form be used in any payware additions.


What's New in Version 1.6

Released

  • Reworked default post processing shader; less vignetting and more balanced color correction.
  • Toned down HDRSunColor values, in order to fix unnatural terrain illumination.
  • Included a collection of alternative post processing shaders.
  • Like 22
  • Thanks 13



User Feedback

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Stary

   4 of 4 members found this review helpful 4 / 4 members

(clapping in polish)

Dude this is the nicest, most natural feeling environment in ages! Makes SF2 look great! Highly recommended!

  • Thanks 1

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bubu

   4 of 4 members found this review helpful 4 / 4 members

Thank you for putting me in love with the "Inclement" weather setting again. The thunderstorm effects just weren't cutting it, I really just wanted "IFR" drizzly/reduced viz conditions, which is replicated here...

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JosefK

   3 of 3 members found this review helpful 3 / 3 members

Just downloaded last night.  Really, truly is almost REX-like in quality and a must-have for any serious user of SF2.  The clouds look real, the lens flare looks real, the sky looks real.  Very nicely done.

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yakarov79

   3 of 3 members found this review helpful 3 / 3 members

Great ! 

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guuruu

   3 of 3 members found this review helpful 3 / 3 members

I love it !

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mhrds

   2 of 2 members found this review helpful 2 / 2 members

Perfecto !!! :good:

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bearnoceros

   2 of 2 members found this review helpful 2 / 2 members

Absolutely beautiful! Thank you for this!

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Shousa

   2 of 2 members found this review helpful 2 / 2 members

Amazing! Thanks :biggrin:

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Vision4k

   2 of 2 members found this review helpful 2 / 2 members

Looks awesome

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Sky High

   2 of 2 members found this review helpful 2 / 2 members

Superb. Great match with Gepard's MiG Alley terrain.

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one4five

   2 of 2 members found this review helpful 2 / 2 members

kickass

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Heck

   2 of 2 members found this review helpful 2 / 2 members

Beautiful mod. Threw it into my Battle of Britain mod. Loving it. Gorgeous aerial environment.

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Malayan_Tiger

   1 of 1 member found this review helpful 1 / 1 member

Awesomeee modder awesomee modd! Thank you for the mod and support. It took me a hard time to read and understand the readme as non-native speaker. But that’s my problem alone. Thank you again !!

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Aenimaeh

  

This changes the game.

A must need mod!

:clapping:

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