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Author Topic: Number of rotations for industries/attractions  (Read 6981 times)

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Offline The Hood

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Number of rotations for industries/attractions
« on: January 22, 2010, 11:23:22 AM »
I've been thinking about the number of rotations for industry and attractions in pak128.Britain, and how that relates to (a) providing snow images for them all and (b) the size of the pak file (the largest part by far is industries, and 4 rotations take twice the size as 2 rotations, and snow images as well doubles the size again).

At the minute all factories and some attractions have 4 rotations (N,E,S,W), so when you rotate the map it looks as if everything has been rotated the right way through 90 degrees.  Some attractions however only have 2 rotations (N/S, E/W).  Originally I was planning on having 4 rotations for everything as standard, but seeing how big the download is becoming and also how much extra work doing 4 rotations is for everything, I'm now of the opinion that 2 is good enough.  In future releases therefore, there would be just 2 rotations for all factories and attractions, so things might look different, but in terms of gameplay nothing would change.

Hopefully most of you will agree with me by voting for that, but I just wanted to test the waters and see whether anyone has a particularly strong opinion on this.

Offline Dwachs

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Re: Number of rotations for industries/attractions
« Reply #1 on: January 22, 2010, 11:36:19 AM »
I can fully understand that. Then pak128.Britain ceases to be the pak that fully supports 4 rotations :/

Offline jamespetts gb

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Re: Number of rotations for industries/attractions
« Reply #2 on: January 22, 2010, 11:38:04 AM »
I think that that's very sad. It really does add to the graphical richness to have all four rotations, and is very disconcerting to rotate the map and see some things still facing the original way. It is well worth the download size, I think.

Incidentally, is it possible to have four rotations for non-snow whilst only two rotations for snow, if the work creating snow images is the problem?

Offline The Hood

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Re: Number of rotations for industries/attractions
« Reply #3 on: January 22, 2010, 11:43:22 AM »
It is trivial to define snow images which point to the non-snow images, so I suppose that is a yes to your question James.  However I think that even pointing to the same image several times still uses the same amount of disk space as if the image was different - maybe someone who understands the inner workings of makeobj better could help on that one?

Of course if there is overwhelming support for 4 rotations, I will keep that as an ambition.  The other option is a "light" download, which has fewer rotations and fewer game objects, for those with limited disk space, or who want a simpler gaming experience.

As to fully supporting 4 rotations, Dwachs, I tried that with townhalls, but the alignment with roads wasn't very good anymore, so I reverted back to 1.  I could always reinstate it though if people want it and the code gets better at dealing with 4R townhalls...

Offline Spike

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Re: Number of rotations for industries/attractions
« Reply #4 on: January 22, 2010, 01:11:22 PM »
I'm kind a fan of the minimalist "no rotation - one view" approach. Also I like small downloads.

Offline Dwachs

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Re: Number of rotations for industries/attractions
« Reply #5 on: January 22, 2010, 02:11:02 PM »
However I think that even pointing to the same image several times still uses the same amount of disk space as if the image was different - maybe someone who understands the inner workings of makeobj better could help on that one?
Only under very rare circumstances, makeobj does notice that there are the same images. Any optimization here, can only be accomplished by an overhaul of the building-write part of makeobj. This is better for actually loading the  pak's, since simutrans notices if one image is loaded twice and should keep only one copy in memory.

Quote
I tried that with townhalls, but the alignment with roads wasn't very good anymore, so I reverted back to 1.  I could always reinstate it though if people want it and the code gets better at dealing with 4R townhalls...
You mean for rotated townhalls the newly created road were not in front of them? But always lower right of the building no matter how it was rotated?

My feeling is, if objects have only one rotation, then rotating the map gives you another rotated map, not the same map rotated. I mean, it feels like a different map. This always disturbed me in the old Simcity 2000, which had map rotation but only one image per building.

Offline The Hood

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Re: Number of rotations for industries/attractions
« Reply #6 on: January 22, 2010, 02:14:56 PM »
You mean for rotated townhalls the newly created road were not in front of them? But always lower right of the building no matter how it was rotated?

I'll try and post some screenshots of what I mean when I'm back home, it's quite hard to explain...

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My feeling is, if objects have only one rotation, then rotating the map gives you another rotated map, not the same map rotated. I mean, it feels like a different map. This always disturbed me in the old Simcity 2000, which had map rotation but only one image per building.

I'd agree with that.  It's just a case of getting the balance between work/size and graphical perfection right :)

Offline TheMacpau

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Re: Number of rotations for industries/attractions
« Reply #7 on: January 22, 2010, 05:56:36 PM »
I've been building the Pak up from the sourceforge files and makeobj for a while so I don't notice the overall download size. I might try downloading the whole thing to see what you mean...

As for the graphical considerations, I understand the points made about the Simcity rotation things where a player rotates the board and then gets lost because they had mentally rotated the buildings in their mind and now things just look weird compared to that. Equally I think we must consider the pak authors on this one, I see a lot of good work going in and I'd rather it remained a labour of love rather than a hard slog. The most important thing is the completeness of all the parts rather than graphical nuances imho.

Offline Dwachs

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Re: Number of rotations for industries/attractions
« Reply #8 on: January 22, 2010, 06:24:44 PM »
I
t's just a case of getting the balance between work/size and graphical perfection right :)
.. and that is entirely your (and any other contributors) decision and cannot be forced with a community poll ;)

Offline kierongreen

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Re: Number of rotations for industries/attractions
« Reply #9 on: January 22, 2010, 07:11:54 PM »
There are other paks out there to cater for minimalist graphics...

Offline The Hood

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Re: Number of rotations for industries/attractions
« Reply #10 on: January 22, 2010, 07:26:03 PM »
.. and that is entirely your (and any other contributors) decision and cannot be forced with a community poll ;)

No, but I'm much more likely to do something if I know it will be appreciated!  Judging by comments here so far, I may still do all 4...

Offline The Hood

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Re: Number of rotations for industries/attractions
« Reply #11 on: February 06, 2010, 02:41:01 PM »
Those of you who like lots of rotations will be pleased with the latest additions to SVN...

Offline jamespetts gb

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Re: Number of rotations for industries/attractions
« Reply #12 on: February 06, 2010, 03:25:28 PM »
:-D

Offline Václav

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Re: Number of rotations for industries/attractions
« Reply #13 on: February 07, 2010, 09:45:34 PM »
I say this:
1. This topic could be helpful within else discussions too
2. 2 rotations are enough - but sometimes situation wants 4 rotations
3. Factories and attractions must have shape for 4 rotations

Offline The Hood

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Re: Number of rotations for industries/attractions
« Reply #14 on: February 07, 2010, 10:13:05 PM »
I've kind of decided to do 4 rotations of everything again.  Enough people seem to want them to make it worth my while doing them, and actually it's not that much more effort than just 2 I've discovered.  Dwachs's patch for townhalls also helped make my mind up - now everything works in the game with 4 rotations it's good to make full use of it.  For major releases of the pak in future I may also release a smaller download version with just 1 or 2 rotations and no snow images which should keep download sizes small and still be compatible with the "full" set.

Offline werl

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Re: Number of rotations for industries/attractions
« Reply #15 on: March 24, 2010, 03:15:24 AM »
Personally, it all comes down to what the building looks like.

Offline neroden

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Re: Number of rotations for industries/attractions
« Reply #16 on: April 11, 2010, 02:34:29 AM »
Let me make the really cheesy point that if you design a building which is fully four-ways symmetrical then you only need one rotation.  :-)  Here's to domed buildings and round fountains!

As for buildings with left-right symmetry but not front-back symmetry...  I'm not sure if simutrans is clever enough to do a left-right mirror-inversion in the "correct" way, which would generate the right results.

In other words, I vote for all four rotations except when fewer rotations is actually *literally the same*.  

---

On a different point, I would much rather have a "permanent summer" release of the pak if there's going to be a "small, efficient" variant.  The season changes slow stuff down, and the snow and tree leaves are purely cosmetic.  (If "leaves on the line" caused track speed to drop it would be another matter.   ;D )

The thing of buildings failing to rotate when the map rotates, however, was always really disconcerting for some reason.   It just doesn't feel right.
« Last Edit: April 11, 2010, 02:37:54 AM by neroden »

Offline The Hood

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Re: Number of rotations for industries/attractions
« Reply #17 on: April 12, 2010, 08:01:57 AM »
You'll notice a number of 1 or 2 rotation images in the pak where I take advantage of symmetry already, if that's what you mean.  I don't really have time to produce a small, efficient variant of the pakset right now, but of course anyone is welcome to build their own reduced version from the sources and share it.