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Dynamic weather and times of day update?


RedEidolon

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Henlo dear SW:TOR Community!

 

I have a suggestion that I have wanted to write down for a very long time. It is:

Why not include weather and times of day in SW:TOR?

I mean, it would be cool if it wasn't always raining on Dromund Kaas, if it wasn't always morning/evening on Coruscant, if it wasn't always night on Nar Shaddaa, if there were two shadows of everything on Tatooine and Ossus (because of the two suns) and if they all had an integrated weather system that was completely random? Then on Korriban it would be night and cloudy, or on Tython it would be day but rainy with lightning, or on Hoth there would suddendly be a blizzard, or on Ilum it would be clear day and the rings would become shadows on the ground with auroras in the sky, or on Rishi it would suddenly be so foggy that you would hardly recognise the character in the picture.

I just think Swtor is a very personal game that values individuality, so why not individuality to the planets? Of course, everything has to run together with the engine and must not eat up too much performance, but it would be a cool idea. Also they need to be realistic: It can't rain on Tatooine or Darvannis, and it should rarely stop raining on Dromund Kaas. Therefore the legends sources need to be analysed carefuly.

Well ... that's my idea.

Now it's up to you. What do you think about it? Pros, cons (etc. ^^)?

_____________________________________________________________________________________________

:sy_darkside: Vënture - Demolition - Darth Malgus

Edited by RedEidolon
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There are only CONS to this plan with the current taxing of CPUs only getting worse with weather effects.

 

It is my understanding they rolled back the weather on the Imperial home planet and you can only see the rain thru your stronghold window now... because it was adding a LOT of strain to the clients processing every raindrop hitting the ground.

 

Before you add more stress to the game engine for visual effects, fix some of the existing issues with the game.

 

I too would enjoy the day/ night cycle, but what price am I willing to pay for it? I'd rather that time be spent fixing crafting and fixing some of the existing graphical bugs in cut scenes and with model clipping.

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I've asked for both before, and as before, I bent knee to the following realities:

1. Dynamic Day/Night Lighting

 

The entire lighting model throughout the game would have to change for all overland areas.

So many places aren't lit by ambient light, but "painted on" light, like the glow stretching across the grass from the side lights circling the statues near the Coruscant senate tower. Those are decals, not actual lights. Stand on one. See if you see your shadow. Not there.

Another example of "painted-on" light versus light that's actually cast and reflecting off surfaces is in the various caves on Yavin. There are lamp posts and such in some of the tunnels, but those are cosmetic, in that they are not responsible for the actual full illumination of the tunnel itself, just as a spot of light for a highly localized ambient affect.

And on the border entrance of those tunnels, look real closely both inside and out. Completely different lightning systems. A truer lighting model would have ambient light outside caves and tunnels stretch inward, or a light just inside the entrance spread outside. This does not happen.

 

A newly introduced day/night cycle would leave lots of little oddities behind from the way things are "illuminated" now, leading to years of bug fixes. That's labor. That's money.

 

2. Dynamic weather

 

Clouds make skies darker. Darkeness causes shadows See issue #1. I would love to see volumetric clouds (clouds that actually take up space, not just painted on a spherical bubble or cube that's enclosing the environment).

Rain would be interesting as well. Consider all those puddles on Dromund Kaas. They have what is known as baked-on reflections, meaning the reflections are added, like a layer or a decal, on top of the "water" before there's actually any environment for the puddle to reflect. Study what's in the reflections of puddles versus what immediately surrounds them. No match. That means there's no single algorithm calculating reflections, meaning that in this DX9 game, a ton of labor would be needed to bake on reflections over predefined water puddles, and those puddles would always appear exactly in the same place for not being actually generated by rain.

 

Tons of tiny details. Months of labor.

 

For EA's gambit, is all that money in paying graphical designers and artists to re-develop old content worthwhile, given there's no promise for so much as one red cent of new revenue for doing so?

I'll let you answer that.

3. Player push-back to anything more graphically demanding than an etch-a-sketch.

There was word a few months ago for BW about "refreshing" the starter planets.

I subsequently posted a thread that we should welcome that, even if it means not everyone's computer could handle a graphical update. I was crucified on the forums by some players who screamed bloody hell no way, their 15-year-old boxes would never handle it.

 

Not a word from Bioware since.

 

I agree with you, OP. I wish those features would be added to the game. I'm not holding out much hope.

Edited by xordevoreaux
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I've asked for both before, and as before, I bent knee to the following realities:

1. Dynamic Day/Night Lighting

 

The entire lighting model throughout the game would have to change for all overland areas.

So many places aren't lit by ambient light, but "painted on" light, like the glow stretching across the grass from the side lights circling the statues near the Coruscant senate tower. Those are decals, not actual lights. Stand on one. See if you see your shadow. Not there.

Another example of "painted-on" light versus light that's actually cast and reflecting off surfaces is in the various caves on Yavin. There are lamp posts and such in some of the tunnels, but those are cosmetic, in that they are not responsible for the actual full illumination of the tunnel itself, just as a spot of light for a highly localized ambient affect.

And on the border entrance of those tunnels, look real closely both inside and out. Completely different lightning systems. A truer lighting model would have ambient light outside caves and tunnels stretch inward, or a light just inside the entrance spread outside. This does not happen.

 

A newly introduced day/night cycle would leave lots of little oddities behind from the way things are "illuminated" now, leading to years of bug fixes. That's labor. That's money.

 

2. Dynamic weather

 

Clouds make skies darker. Darkeness causes shadows See issue #1. I would love to see volumetric clouds (clouds that actually take up space, not just painted on a spherical bubble or cube that's enclosing the environment).

Rain would be interesting as well. Consider all those puddles on Dromund Kaas. They have what is known as baked-on reflections, meaning the reflections are added, like a layer or a decal, on top of the "water" before there's actually any environment for the puddle to reflect. Study what's in the reflections of puddles versus what immediately surrounds them. No match. That means there's no single algorithm calculating reflections, meaning that in this DX9 game, a ton of labor would be needed to bake on reflections over predefined water puddles, and those puddles would always appear exactly in the same place for not being actually generated by rain.

 

Tons of tiny details. Months of labor.

 

For EA's gambit, is all that money in paying graphical designers and artists to re-develop old content worthwhile, given there's no promise for so much as one red cent of new revenue for doing so?

I'll let you answer that.

3. Player push-back to anything more graphically demanding than an etch-a-sketch.

There was word a few months ago for BW about "refreshing" the starter planets.

I subsequently posted a thread that we should welcome that, even if it means not everyone's computer could handle a graphical update. I was crucified on the forums by some players who screamed bloody hell no way, their 15-year-old boxes would never handle it.

 

Not a word from Bioware since.

 

I agree with you, OP. I wish those features would be added to the game. I'm not holding out much hope.

 

That's huge insight you have. i'm really impressed:D

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This is an old subject from long ago. It seems that BW has no interest in a Day / Night Cycle. The quote is from 2012.

 

They specifically said in an interview that their graphical design team did not have they time to do this right for the myriad number of planets they included in the game. It's on their wish list for the future but is not a high priority.

 

I'm not going to hunt the interview down for you; you can use Google yourself. It was featured on Massively or MMORPG.com IIRC.

 

From the original SWToR convention on March 12, 2012

 

https://www.swtor-life.com/events/pax-east-swtor-minute-by-minute-coverage-day-2/995/

 

Look under the video 3rd bullet point...

 

There will be no day/night cycle in the game at release. Some planets have multiple moons/suns – too hard to implement (source: Darth Hater)

 

This may change but don't hold your breath. If they have not done it yet after 8 years, they probably will not.

Edited by denavin
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Pros: more immersive world and I would really much like to see this.

Cons: possible more tension on CPU, although I never experienced FPS drops on a new system, on old I had troubles only in PvP and on the fleet, so maybe it won't hit performance too much, 50/50 on this one.

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As someone already mentioned, the game is too CPU centric as it is and it would put undue stress on CPU performance in its current state. They’d need a new game engine that is 64 bit and properly utilisers multiple CPU cores.

Exactly.

THE biggest improvement to SWTOR would be a new 64-bit multithreaded engine. 🤞

If they did that, the gains in new users would outweigh the loss of some old potatoes. 🙂

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Exactly.

THE biggest improvement to SWTOR would be a new 64-bit multithreaded engine. 🤞

If they did that, the gains in new users would outweigh the loss of some old potatoes. 🙂

 

There is any public roadmap with features/fixes? I feel the current state of the game is just maintenance, without any core improvement, some bugs existing since the game launch.

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Exactly.

THE biggest improvement to SWTOR would be a new 64-bit multithreaded engine. 🤞

If they did that, the gains in new users would outweigh the loss of some old potatoes. 🙂

Yes please!

I'm totally not an expert, so I don't know how this can be done, but I would totally pay the price of a new game if they do a SWTOR Remake, with a Star Wars Fallen Order visual graphic quality, or better. Either by using Unreal Engine 4 which exist for a few years and is most probably very stable, or with the upcoming Unreal Engine 5 announced for 2021.

 

I understand the game would need to be re-coded from scratch, but no need to rethink the story , and voice acting are already recorded.

 

Can't wait for BioWare to announce this is the 10th anniversary surprise ! :D

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