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Hello all, I was wondering If you can have more than 5 (five) LOD models for aircraft.  It sure would be convenient as I want to separate the initial LODs quite close together (1 at 50m, 2 at 125m, 3 at 250m .. and then 4,5,6,7 at much greater distances out to 10000m)

Thanks for your help.

Edited by sophocles
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I have AC with 6 separate lods and shows up fine, so should be no problem. Usually beyond 300-400m you don't see much changes visually, only the system load can vary on fighter sized AC. The bird I have has a step from 300 to 800 then to 8000, between this last 2 values I think lod steps can be skipped.

Edited by logan4
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Also if you want to use damage textures they are visible only on 1st LOD, I think.

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I figure that two or maybe three distance LODs are the most important:

- The one right after the main lod, so the game can stop sweating on the small details as quickly as possible. But what Guuruu says about damage overlays is also a factor.

- What is usually the hardest part for the game to render are Airfields and Carriers with parked aircraft. So the parked LODs that are typically in view during takeoff and landing decide on the lowest FPS situation. But a busy carrier is rather unfixable in this regard, besides just keeping them a bit plain (less parking spots, avoid deck crew) or buying a overkill graphics card.

- The smallest one. An aircraft is often just a few pixels large in the view of the player. So if the model for this range is like 200/100kB or smaller it significantly lowers the total rendering load in most situations. 

What I usually do is set temporary LOD distances in the ini file to check for proper LOD synching. Like 60m, 80m, 100m and 120m. And then see if all LODs appear when zooming in and out. This also shows whether or not there are nodes that make LOD transitions unnecesseraly crude on the eye, so one can consider adjusting these.

 

( Note that I never made aircraft, just ground objects.)

 

Edited by gerwin
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PS. Did someone ever find a 3DS max (2009 or earlier) filter that can reduce the polygon count of complex shapes automatically, without screwing things up too much?  So far I did not.

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2 hours ago, gerwin said:

I figure that two or maybe three distance LODs are the most important:

- The one right after the main lod, so the game can stop sweating on the small details as quickly as possible. But what Guuruu says about damage overlays is also a factor.

- What is usually the hardest part for the game to render are Airfields and Carriers with parked aircraft. So the parked LODs that are typically in view during takeoff and landing decide on the lowest FPS situation. But a busy carrier is rather unfixable in this regard, besides just keeping them a bit plain (less parking spots, avoid deck crew) or buying a overkill graphics card.

- The smallest one. An aircraft is often just a few pixels large in the view of the player. So if the model for this range is like 200/100kB or smaller it significantly lowers the total rendering load in most situations. 

What I usually do is set temporary LOD distances in the ini file to check for proper LOD synching. Like 60m, 80m, 100m and 120m. And then see if all LODs appear when zooming in and out. This also shows whether or not there are nodes that make LOD transitions unnecesseraly crude on the eye, so one can consider adjusting these.

 

( Note that I never made aircraft, just ground objects.)

 

This make a lot of sense, thanks!

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1 minute ago, gerwin said:

PS. Did someone ever find a 3DS max (2009 or earlier) filter that can reduce the polygon count of complex shapes automatically, without screwing things up too much?  So far I did not.

I'd kill for something like that!  I try to do as much sub-divisional modelling as I can; which means instant lowering of polycount by reducing iterations of meshsmooth.  However, shaving off polys from the base model manually, while trying to maintain mesh and mapping integrity is a nightmare!! .. not to mention time consuming and tedious :(

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13 minutes ago, sophocles said:

I'd kill for something like that!  I try to do as much sub-divisional modelling as I can; which means instant lowering of polycount by reducing iterations of meshsmooth.  However, shaving off polys from the base model manually, while trying to maintain mesh and mapping integrity is a nightmare!! .. not to mention time consuming and tedious :(

did you try modifier -  'optimize' ? although it can screw thing some times.

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49 minutes ago, yakarov79 said:

did you try modifier -  'optimize' ? although it can screw thing some times.

Yup, it works fine for hi distance LODs.

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5 hours ago, yakarov79 said:

did you try modifier -  'optimize' ? although it can screw thing some times.

Have tried it .. and yes, it "screws everything (at least the texture mapping) up".  Thanks anyway! :good:

Edited by sophocles
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5 hours ago, guuruu said:

Yup, it works fine for hi distance LODs.

Agreed, If you can't discern any textures on the model .. so it would need to be for LODs greater than 800m

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