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johnnyBravo

Space sim, everythings dark, except for one side?

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Hi, I was thinking for a space sim, say things like asteroids, space stations etc would mostly be dark, tho a space station would probably have its own lighting, but basically depending where the sun(s) are in the system. For example most of the time asteroids would just be black against the stars. And I could incorporate spot lights for the ship to view asteroids in front of the ship. What do you think about that, is that a good idea?

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From a reality point of view its great but from a gameplay point of view it would be bad. It would be very hard to see what things were until you got up close enough to shine a light on it. Basically it would be the Doom III flashlight in space - not a good idea.

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No, not necessarily. You could have some cool HUD tracking stuff and/or radar. Drawing the outline of objects for example...

It wouldn't need to be on all the time, so you could turn it on only when you enter an asteroid field for example. You could imagine all ships are lit, except maybe tough stealth fighters which dont show up on radar anyway.

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After years of playing space sims I have to go more for the I-War and Freespace approach: Light it up and let us see it how pretty everything is, even if that means nebulas all over the place. Why? Because space without terrain is boring, and all that light and color at least give you something to boast about. (If it bothers you, tell yourself that light amplification and image processing are built into your cockpit / monitor.)

If you have a choice between realistic graphics and pretty graphics, I'd say vote the way your consumer would.

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Quote:
Original post by Wavinator
After years of playing space sims I have to go more for the I-War and Freespace approach: Light it up and let us see it how pretty everything is, even if that means nebulas all over the place. Why? Because space without terrain is boring, and all that light and color at least give you something to boast about. (If it bothers you, tell yourself that light amplification and image processing are built into your cockpit / monitor.)

If you have a choice between realistic graphics and pretty graphics, I'd say vote the way your consumer would.


I disagree. If you can make the game SO uberrealistic that it immerses people in the game, creates the loneliness of space...go for it.

Think of it like KILL BILL; not everybody liked it, but the people who got it (understood), got it(bought it). And it turned out GREAT.

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Quote:
Original post by Boku San
I disagree. If you can make the game SO uberrealistic that it immerses people in the game, creates the loneliness of space...go for it.


I used to believe this until a friend made a good point: He said that you have to go with the mythology of the time if you want people to be able to relate. For instance, when we debated about whether games should have zero-G movement inside space stations or ships he said, "We're Lucas kids! Nobody knows what that is!" [rolleyes]

I think this applies here as well. We've grown up with Star Wars, Star Trek and Babylon 5, which are very bright. That's the mythology of the times.

Of course, ultimately it's all about the playtest...

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I'd have to side with Wavinator on this one. Although an 'uber' realistic game might sound real nice in theory, realism is NOT what makes a game fun to play.

And as far as immersion, I've been immersed in the most surrealstic of games, back when they used vector based graphics. Immersion comes from a self-consistant, seemingly living world. Whether that world follows real life rules or not really doesn't matter.

I can't imagine someone saying "Gee, what crap! Space is supposed to be real dark, and here I can see everything." But I can definately imagine someone saying "Hey, what kind of crap are they trying to pull? How can I avoid asteroids if I can't see em till it's too late?"

If you really like the idea build it in as an option. It wouldn't be too hard to create a toggle. Play it both ways, give it to other people to test. I bet AT LEAST 80% of em will like the way where they can see.

Maybe your great uncle Mortimer, the NASA scientist, will like your super realistic rendition of space, and you'll recieve extra money for christmas, so it won't all be a waste of time.

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well one major plus i thought with the asteroids and that being black would be the rendering speed :)


How about if you could see quite far in a field of view, and you could see your light beams moving on the asteroids?, and like Xetrov said have some kind of hud/radar, for avoidance of hitting the rocks.

I will try a toggle when i get some time

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Idunno, LineWars II had lighting like the poster describes (totally single-source) and it looked very cool.

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Realistic lighting by the sun would look pretty cool, but you'll need to highlight the objects visible on the radar/sensors somehow in the 3D view, as well. Also, trying to include any realistic lighting can get you started rolling down a slippery slope: if your lighting by the sun is realistic, people will be looking for engine glow, explosisions, etc. to light things realistically as well. If you want to light things realistically, make sure that you know how far to go with that (will you have shadows? will there be any other light sources?), and that you can deliver the level of detail that you think is necessary to make realistic lighting look cool, rather than just weird and confusing.

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