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Author Topic: Tutorial-Basic Airfield Building  (Read 19381 times)

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spdr109

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Re: Tutorial-Basic Airfield Building
« Reply #36 on: March 19, 2011, 07:15:29 PM »

Uzin,

I am sorry to say that the airfield in question is fundamentally flawed. I tried to create a mission
to test but right from the start I had problems. I tried to land two flights of B-17s. I could not get the
landing waypoint to "snap" to the desired runway ground point. In game this will manifest itself as all
of the aircraft using the other runway even if you try to manually place the waypoint where you
want it. I have had this problem myself in two situations. One is when you try to use multiple runway ground
points on the same runway on a multiple runway airfield. The only way I could make it work was on a
three runway configuration with only the center runway accepting dual runway ground points. Airfields
with only a single runway are no problem. The other situation that causes problems is when the
runway ground points are not aligned on the same horizontal or vertical line. The only consistently
successful solution for me was to create individual runways pointing in opposite directions with their
own runway ground points.

I realize this is not the question you asked and I apologize. I am somewhat amazed that I discovered this
problem in a stock airfield! Let me look around in some other maps and try to find a more suitable
candidate for examination.

Edit:I am sad to say that I have found that same airfield duplicated on the stock Berlin map.
      I checked around(on various stock maps), did some quick testing, and found several airfields that simply will not
      function as designed. I hope that I am mistaken! Would someone try to get aircraft to land
      simultaneously on the airfield indicated by Uzin? I could not make it work.

      The problem I have with having taxiways crossing between runways is that it opens up the chance
       for collisions between taxiing and landing aircraft. I have taken great care on the North Norway map to
       eliminate this possibility.
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Uzin

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Re: Tutorial-Basic Airfield Building
« Reply #37 on: March 20, 2011, 02:46:00 AM »

spdr109,

You need not to apologize for anything! Who would expect that stock airfields suffer from such an issue!
I thínk it is worthy to report this finding also to DT, maybe they will improve it in a future.
Another drawback is the use of blank plates, such as on Bessarabia stock map, which leads to unnecessary increase of the size of actors.static file, in situation when there is elegant solution - ZUTI's  friction mod.
Thank you for your very needed systematic work.
Best regards.
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spdr109

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Re: Tutorial-Basic Airfield Building
« Reply #38 on: March 20, 2011, 04:34:22 AM »

Uzin,

Bessarabia is one of the maps I looked at. I chose an airfield, air started three flights and tried
to land them. One entire parking area was totally inaccessible having the taxiway begin at the runway
ground point. The usable parking area had stay points entirely too close to each other and objects.
To me this is a disturbing development. It is no surprise that mod maps have airfield problems if
the stock ones do as well!








I placed some concrete runway plates to demonstrate spacing. Larger aircraft will not be able to use the
majority of these stay points but fighters should be ok. Perhaps this was the map builders intention?


I agree with you on the use of ZUTI's friction mod. However the blank plate method is so widely used
that I thought it should be explained in this tutorial. 

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Uzin

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Re: Tutorial-Basic Airfield Building
« Reply #39 on: March 20, 2011, 04:46:42 AM »

... the blank plate method is so widely used that I thought it should be explained in this tutorial. 
I agree with you, of course.
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spdr109

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Re: Tutorial-Basic Airfield Building
« Reply #40 on: March 20, 2011, 05:16:04 AM »

Class,

   Your homework assignment is to find and fix every flawed airfield in IL-2.

   Due date: 2 weeks!

   LMAO spdr109  ;)
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spdr109

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Re: Tutorial-Basic Airfield Building
« Reply #41 on: March 20, 2011, 05:39:16 AM »


Now we need to clean up the airfield and expand the test mission.

Begin by reconnecting the stay points, starting with the ones we just added,
for a total of sixteen per runway. Now is the time to smooth out the taxiways.
As you reconnect the stay points, adjust the corresponding taxi points so they
follow the paths on the texture and flow smoothly from one point to the next. Try to avoid sharp angles.





Save the changes and go into regular FMB and fly the test mission. Twelve aircraft per runway should park with no problems.

Now expand the test mission by adding another flight to the first runway.
Follow the guidelines given previously.





Because we tested the stay points one flight at a time earlier, we should have no problems.

Also pay close attention to air traffic control! There are going to be alot of aircraft in the air at the same time and the chance of collision increases.

I can no longer provide a screenshot of the mission because it will not fit on the screen anymore.

Now add another flight to the second runway. Again, be mindful of how the various flights are spaced. Collisions in the air are inevitable at ths point.






With this many aircraft on the runway we now run the risk of not having a long enough take off roll.
At the beginning of this mission, change views to follow the aircraft closest to the end of the runway
and make sure that it has enough runway to take off.





If everythig worked correctly, hurrah! If not, look carefully to find any problems. Right now this airfield is maxed out
for the two runway configuration. We can launch no more aircraft. All that is left is to clean up the extra stay points
and arrange the blank plates and we are finished.

Sometime soon we will explore adding runways in the opposite direction and will show how to segregate parking areas
for fighters only. To advance further it is critical that everything that we have done thus far is in order.

Right now though I need a break!

Feel free to ask any questions or suggest other things that you might want to explore in upcoming segments.



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spdr109

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Re: Tutorial-Basic Airfield Building
« Reply #42 on: March 20, 2011, 09:24:59 AM »

Good point Boomer!

Just make sure that you place two runway points, one on each runway, perpendicular to one another.
If they are not perpendicular the AI will sense the closest one first and the aircraft will jump from the
other runway to use it. With simultaneous landings taking place, this is a collision for sure.

To take it a step further, you can somewhat choose which types of aircraft will exit the
runway at various points. You may want fighters(shorter landing roll) to exit in one particular
area while bombers(longer landing roll) continue down the runway to exit in a different area.
This is not a hard and fast rule but along with a clever arrangement of objects it can be done.

I will elaborate on this later in the tutorial.
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spdr109

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Re: Tutorial-Basic Airfield Building
« Reply #43 on: March 24, 2011, 05:43:00 PM »



Let us eliminate some of the extra stay points. As we expanded our airfield we ended up with a few more
than we actually needed. We can eliminate stay points, and some extra taxi points, that no longer serve
any logical purpose.





Finally we need to deal with the blank plates. When you build an airfield using plates, the ground is smoothed out
so the aircraft can move around  without bouncing around too much. When you build an airfield over a texture,
as we have done here, you need another method to smooth out the ground. The latest and most efficient method is
|ZUTI|'s Airfield-Grass friction mod. I recommend looking for information elsewhere on this method because it has
been much more thoroughly explained than I could do here. Since this map was already created using the blank plate
method and because it's use is so widespread, we will use it here.

First of all you need to find and install a mod to make the blank plates visible.
There are several clever techniques available so go get one that you like. Basically it is your games own static.ini file
with the information from a colored plate replacing the information from the blank plate.
Then when needed, you load your altered static.ini file as a mod using the JSGME and the blank plates become visible.

This is what our airfield looks like with the blank plates visible.





You will notice some gaps and irregularities because we have changed the layout from the original map maker's.

To begin, clear out an area near the end of the runway so you can see some of the texture underneath.
When you are deleting plates, be sure to keep the object window open so you do not delete something that you may need.





Begin placing the blank runway plates using the line of a runway as a guide. Line them up uniformly
down the entire length of the runway. Delete the existing plates as needed.





Now begin again at the top of the airfield placing another row of runway plates next to the first.
Continue in this manner until the entire runway area of the texture is covered.





Next use blank parking plates and blank taxi plates to cover any areas defined by the taxi and stay points.
Also be sure to cover any areas that a player would probably taxi on. When completed, the airfield should look like this. 





We are almost finished!




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Uzin

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Re: Tutorial-Basic Airfield Building
« Reply #44 on: March 25, 2011, 03:59:56 AM »

All mapmakers are certainly very happy to learn this awesome tutorial !

As it concerns my homework,  ;) I am sorry that I did not reveal other stock map airfield issues, I have troubles with my 17" monitor, now working on 14" old one which is a bit dark.

My another 2pence: is it possible to report the increase of the size of actors.static
file due to using all the blank plates for a single airfiled ? And compare this size increase with that using friction mod ?  Then, by multiplying the size increase difference by the number of airfields per map, very interesting conclusions might be done, I think, in favour of ZUTI's method.
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Mixx

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Re: Tutorial-Basic Airfield Building
« Reply #45 on: March 25, 2011, 09:35:19 AM »


Blank plates for one of the largest airport will take a maximum of 1,5-2 kb for the actors.static
I think this is unimportant. Even if it is used 25 airfields, the file will increase to 50 kb.
In addition, the very geometry of blank plates and their arrangement may create the illusion of friction on certain parts of the runway. Landing gear gets to rough areas of the runway. That is very realistic.
You do not feel as if on a perfectly smooth surface of the ironing board….

P/S.   Good job, Spdr! Your leadership must go on and on....
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Uzin

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Re: Tutorial-Basic Airfield Building
« Reply #46 on: March 25, 2011, 10:51:47 AM »


Blank plates for one of the largest airport will take a maximum of 1,5-2 kb for the actors.static
I think this is unimportant. Even if it is used 25 airfields, the file will increase to 50 kb.
...but some maps recently released have about 50 airfields, that is the difference of about 100 kB, what might not seem to be negligible when the whole actors.static is about 420 kB. I know that by the use of e.g. Autopop tool this size is larger by an order, nevertheless, there might be also another point of view, especially from those who have older PC. And moreover, the dwelling of actors.static file might be reserved better to the buildings and other visuable objects, rather than to invisible blank plates. As for flat ironing the area, you may choose the proper friction factor to avoid this effect. This friction factor may be different for different airfields, so making another features -differentiating among various airfields - to be possible. Just my 2pence.
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spdr109

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Re: Tutorial-Basic Airfield Building
« Reply #47 on: March 25, 2011, 03:41:52 PM »

IMHO the biggest FPS killer and the cause of interminable map load times is the
area covered by the map.

Is it better to have a map that covers a ginormous area and then be forced to skimp
on everything from texture size to amount of objects to blank plates etc?

Or should we try to model a more reasonable area and finish the map to a higher level
of detail?
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