Graphics & visuals

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Graphics & visuals

Postby MirceaKitsune » Fri Oct 14, 2011 12:55 pm

I remember discussing this on the old forums, but felt like making a topic here too. SD has some great quality cars and circuits, which IMO give it potential for becoming a professional sim eventually. However, I don't believe anything will help much without some better graphics existing as well.

Yes, I know from developers that the graphics code is downdated, and improving it would be a lot of work (with almost no one around to do it). One of my thoughts was if an existing graphics engine could be integrated instead (eg: Ogre), just like BulletX or ODE can be used for physics. But even if not, is it very hard to add modern effects to the existing one? Like, can't a few lines of code activate them in OpenGL, or define basic shaders? vDrift for instance (also open-source and AFAIK less popular and with fewer coders) has dynamic reflections, gloss, and even bloom. My understanding in graphics code is minimal, which is why I'm asking.

The thing that hurts my eyes most are the env-map reflections on cars. I believe they're visibly not as good as real reflections, no matter how good the env texture is. Personally, I'd consider this the biggest emergency. After that, I would love to see a real lightning system for car lights, with support for gloss on roads and other surfaces (shiny roads that reflect the sun are awesome). Bloom, motion blur and others would also be fun later on.

I don't wanna ask the impossible, and I know it's hard to do complex things in an open source project when you're alone. But are there any plans, hopes, or efforts at all for some modern graphics (at least reflections and dynamic lightning)? And has anyone made any attempts to integrate some shaders up to this point (in either Torcs or SD) and possibly have an addon? I fully support such features, and even consider some visual updates essential. So I hope it will happen at some point :)
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Re: Graphics & visuals

Postby Haruna » Fri Oct 14, 2011 5:15 pm

I think I discussed this with you on some other posts: we don't have anyone who is specifically really good at graphics engine coding - the new stuff that was put in by the current members is more or less the first time they've modified the engine.

I want really great graphics too, but on a piece of shit engine like the one we have now, with no developers able to focus on this issue? Not possible... sorry.
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Re: Graphics & visuals

Postby torcs-ng » Wed Apr 04, 2012 10:46 am

Sorry for my very late answer.

So yes it is planned in the future to migrate to another library than PLIB (Ogre, OSG, etc ...) personally I prefer OSG but nothing is decided.

But anyway the migration will take time ... FlightGear (flight simulator) has migrated from PLIB to OSG, it took four years to the team for this to be included in the release and still have some effects disappeared for now, but they have won more.

So, yes... but we will have to be patient.

For the physics engine, the Torcs's old code was using ODE, it was removed to be managed by an internal code, it is not expected back on a different code, but a complete rewrite is in progress (probably simuV4) but like it will take time too.

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