Balancing the Environment

Published on 8/12/2011

After cracking on with the content, I realized that I was going to have to redo some of it...

It sounds like a bit of a setback, and to a certain extent it is, but I was never under any illusion that I'd be able to get away without LOD. So, I revised my content model and drawing engine a bit, and then proceeded to model different versions of some of the same models. The palm tree below as exhibit A.


I reached a point where I was forced to solve my frame-rate issues. I built an object brush for the level editor. It allowed me to pretty quickly paint many, many, many palm trees. After battling a bit to determine the exact height underneath each instance so that they 'stick' to the level tiles, I ended up with a frame-rate of about 12... And it was even slower in the game when the depth and shadow maps are also rendered. So, LOD as a first step. Secondly, I've had to limit the content that is used for the depth map and shadow map renders. Not all content will generate shadows, and not all content will receive shadows. Discriminating between that has helped to get the frame-rate back to around 35... which is better for what is currently all happening.. but I'll still need to spend time revising. I hope to avoid having to do LOD on the tiles - it will probably cause tears and look pretty bad. So hopefully far-plane distance and drawing distance will help to limit the lag from the tiles.

Also, Ramon has made progress with the Stingray...