Author Topic: When signals_on_left=1, the images of signals should be reflected, not offseted.  (Read 511 times)

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Offline Ichou

Hi, everyone.

Since the signals in Japan is left-sided, I usually play Simutrans with signals_on_left=1. Then, I often have some difficulties when I use a kind of signals: whose images have objects on the both sides of the way.
In pak128, there are a lot of signals which have signs on the both sides. When I use them, one of the signs is drawn far from the right place because the image is translated parallelly by the offsets. This is very confusing.

So I suggest it use the reflected images like you can see in the mirror. The image for direction W should be the reflected image of one for direction N, and the image for direction S should be the mirrored image of one for direction E, and so on.

As far as I can conceive, the only problem will be that the images of signals won't make sense if there are some letters on the images, since most letters lose the meaning when mirrored.

Online Leartin

You also run into issues with lighting, south-facing signals should be lighter than east-facing signals. But since I'll probably never use that flag, I really don't care whether they are mirrored or offset.

Offline prissi

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pak128 should fix its signs. Also twoway signs like choose sign and speed mit are not mirrored.

Offline Ichou

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pak128 should fix its signs.

The fact pak makers have to fix the images means that the basic system is wrong. Indeed, with the current system, a "perfect" signal would have a complete symmetry in its design, even though there are few perfectly symmetric signs. Thus, it's clear that the rule of offset robs signals of their expression.

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Also twoway signs like choose sign and speed mit are not mirrored.

What does "twoway sign" mean? And what's the reason why they're not mirrored?

Online Leartin

The fact pak makers have to fix the images means that the basic system is wrong.

But if we were to follow your suggestion, all asymmetric signals as well as their lighting would need to be fixed by the pak makers, so by your logic, that system would be just as wrong. And if we could create graphics for both versions, allowing for most creative freedom, pak makers would still have to fix their stuff.

The only possible solution as to what could be coded that works 100% and does not cause pak makers to have to do anything is abandoning left-sided signals as a program function.

Offline Ichou

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But if we were to follow your suggestion, all asymmetric signals as well as their lighting would need to be fixed by the pak makers, so by your logic, that system would be just as wrong.

No, the pak makers have the right to make what they want to make, so they don't have to care about the left-signal users. I'm discussing how the left-signal users make most of the signals which are well adapted for right-signal users.
Since both rules aren't perfect, the following question will be to the point. "Comparing the position with the brightness, which is more important?" "If you were to have to sacrifice one of them, which would you choose?" For me, it's clear. I would sacrifice the brightness, because while the wrong positions are very hard to see, I can bear the little difference in brightness.

Offline Ves

If I where to come with a wish in this context, it would be to be able to compose a signal out from multiple images. The issues Ichu is describing is a result of a pak creator wishing to create a signal more detailed than the bare signal, ie a shelf, an additional sign or ballisers between the tracks. This is currently "kind of" possible, meaning that either the entire signal and all additional things is frontimage or backimage (dependent on which side of track it's at) and you cannot 100% use it with "signals on left".

For total freedom, three layers would be needed:
Things on the right side of the track,
things on the left side of the track, and
things that won't change at all and can be either backimage and/or front image (in which case it's two layers).

Modern signals usually have ballisers and other stuff between the rails and that stuff should be put in the non-shifting side layer, and probably defaults as backimage.
Things that always is on the "other" side of the track from the sign/signal, like entry sign on one side and forbidden entry on the other, should be put in the "left of track layer" and finally the actual signal/sign should be put in the "right of track layer.
Then the pakset author can guarantee that their graphics will look good no matter what setting the players use and they will be able to create more details around signals and signs.

This would of corse need the graphics to be updated to use the feature.

Online Leartin

Or simply allow the pak-creator to design left-sided signals as a variaton of the 'normal' right-sided signals within the same object. Which would even allow for both right-sided signals and left-sided signals on the same map, since the setting would only affect which one is buildt by default, while the other might still be available through some control/shift shenanigans. But that would beg the question why one wouldn't just use a left-sided-signals-addon to do the same.

Not to say back- and frontimage for signals would be a bad idea in general, but that would just be an improvement per se (of which Signals could use a lot), rather than a solution for left-sided signals.

Offline Vladki

Currently, the signal on left switch, does not only shift signals on the other side of the road, but also swaps their front / back image behavior. Thus you cannot make left handed signals directly. You have to paint them as if they are right-handed, and find the right offset for them, so they end up on the right place.

Mirroring is imho impossible, because you have to mirror in isometric view. Think of a square shaped sign. Its top edge is horizontal, but rendered at 30 degrees angle. If you mirror that, the sign would look as if facing away from the road. That is not what you expected.

The left shift is configurable in dat files.  It can be even negative for some special signs.

It is the pakset designer choice if they make the signs appear good on the other side of road or not.