Captain
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 2,263
# 51
01-30-2013, 01:55 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by tacofangs
I think one thing that many people overlook when they say, "Just have fans build it!" is that everything that goes into the game has to be built in specific ways. Ships more than most, as they are basically a character. They need to not only fit into a triangle count, and a material count, but they have to be split up into multiple parts, with pivots in specific locations for customization. They have to have all of their UVs set up in a way to work well with multiple different materials. They have to be set up with nodes for every phaser strip, blinky light, photon torpedo launcher, and tractor beam. They have to be named in specific ways, and a million other things I'm sure I don't know about since I'm not a ship artist.

The point being, making a ship for OUR game, is a much more involved process than just making a good looking model in Maya for renders.

All of that stuff makes it difficult to outsource. There are many iterations, many things need to be double, triple, octuple checked, and when something breaks, there needs to be someone to debug/fix it who knows what they're doing.
The models for Star Trek Bridge Commander are not simply renders for making hi-rez pictures. The same hardpointing, naming, and some of the "million other things" are also done in that game, as well as any other game that models are added to. (Which is pretty much any modern game).

If it's such a difficult process that takes too long for your artists to do in the short times they have, then give the community the tools they need to improve the look of the ships in this game. Hold a contest, offer ingame rewards, or whatever, to inspire and motivate people to give it a try. They win (prizes), Cryptic wins (better looking ships), players win (better gameplay experience). Win/Win/Win scenario.


Quote:
I disagree with the original poster that STO's models are "terrible". In fact, I think some are incredibly detailed and the amount of modification they have made based on player feedback is astounding.
"Incredibly detailed" doesn't describe some of the clearly obvious ship errors, for example on the Sovereign, as shown in the first post.

Sure, "terrible" is up to debate, but "sloppy", in some of these cases, is not.

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Career Officer
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 867
# 52
01-30-2013, 10:37 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by stardestroyer001 View Post

"Incredibly detailed" doesn't describe some of the clearly obvious ship errors, for example on the Sovereign, as shown in the first post.

Sure, "terrible" is up to debate, but "sloppy", in some of these cases, is not.
The models of most of the player ships are incredibly detailed, in some ways more0so than on the real on-screen models. Whether they contain what you judge to be "errors" has no bearing on their detail.

If you want to nitpick, there are huge numbers of "errors" in the real models used on screen and unlike the game, those errors are pretty much permanent. Compared to the "errors" and inconsistencies that made it onto the hundreds of hours of professionally-produced Star Trek television and movies, I think the art department here is doing a rather good job.

It does not mean that you should not point out what you believe to be an error when you find it. It just means that getting one little detail wrong when you zoom in ultra-close hardly makes the ship models "terrible".
Captain
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 2,263
# 53
01-31-2013, 04:40 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by logicalspock View Post
The models of most of the player ships are incredibly detailed, in some ways more0so than on the real on-screen models. Whether they contain what you judge to be "errors" has no bearing on their detail.

If you want to nitpick, there are huge numbers of "errors" in the real models used on screen and unlike the game, those errors are pretty much permanent. Compared to the "errors" and inconsistencies that made it onto the hundreds of hours of professionally-produced Star Trek television and movies, I think the art department here is doing a rather good job.

It does not mean that you should not point out what you believe to be an error when you find it. It just means that getting one little detail wrong when you zoom in ultra-close hardly makes the ship models "terrible".
I don't know why I keep having to post this picture over and over...



This problem, along with the Dreadnought components being off-axis and the gap in the Expl. Cruiser Retrofit, is quite easily seen. The Intrepid-class has a similar problem, on the underside of the saucer.

You don't need to zoom in ultra-close to see this. And I hardly call this "accurate".

"A rather good job". Right.

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Survivor of Romulus
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 1,459
# 54
01-31-2013, 05:23 PM
If you really want to see good models, check out the bridge commander mod community (BC-Central is the best one).

Check out the Vorcha mesh on this page. Stunning isn't it? 20k polygons.

Now I don't expect quite that level of detail, but surely the models could look reasonable? Many of the ships in STO just look 'off'.
There was a sig here, but I gave up. Thanks {REDACTED}
Career Officer
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 867
# 55
02-01-2013, 11:35 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by stardestroyer001 View Post
I don't know why I keep having to post this picture over and over...



This problem, along with the Dreadnought components being off-axis and the gap in the Expl. Cruiser Retrofit, is quite easily seen. The Intrepid-class has a similar problem, on the underside of the saucer.

You don't need to zoom in ultra-close to see this. And I hardly call this "accurate".

"A rather good job". Right.
Just because the name and registry number are in a certain place on the Enterprise E does not mean they would appear in the same place on another ship. Ships in this game can carry quite lengthy names and the art department may have decided to rearrange things a bit to make the names more visible rather than forcing a tiny, unreadable font.

I think there are an awful lot of ship models in STO and the art department has generally done a fairly good job making them accurate. For instance, the level of detail on the B'rel is absolutely stunning.
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2012
Posts: 132
# 56
02-01-2013, 12:00 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by kagasensei View Post
Note: Some of you REALLY play the immersion-card here??? OMG, folks... Being in an STF with a borgified Ferengi Marauder, a Breen ship, a Dominion ship and a Tholian cruiser - ALL miraculously captained by Starfleet officers - completely killed off the last bit of immersion looooong ago...
Thank you for pointing that out.

If people want to constantly zoom in and stare at their ship so much so that what is described in the OP actually effects them...that's perfectly fine. To each their own.

...but to say that this hurts immersion is ridiculous.
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Captain
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 2,263
# 57
02-01-2013, 01:50 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by cdrgadley View Post
Thank you for pointing that out.

If people want to constantly zoom in and stare at their ship so much so that what is described in the OP actually effects them...that's perfectly fine. To each their own.

...but to say that this hurts immersion is ridiculous.
Here we go again!



I don't need a magnifying glass. I don't need to zoom in. It's obvious from a distance!
And it should never have happened, if the model artists were doing their job in replicating the looks of the ships from the series this game is based off of.

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Ensign
Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 23
# 58
02-01-2013, 02:00 PM
i could be wrong here so dont complain at me for it, but with the dreadnought spinal lance being slightly off, is that because the saucer is supposed to have the saucer seperation console, so thats why its off . . . because the designers tried to take its ability to seperate into account?

again i may be wrong about this, its just what i have seen
Captain
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 2,263
# 59
02-01-2013, 04:37 PM
The Galaxy-X model is a modification of the already-existing Galaxy Class Retrofit model, which does have saucer separation. You can see this if your Galaxy-X bumps against the wall of the sector block, and you turn the camera to look at the sector block.

As to why it's off, I'm not sure, and that's why I've made this thread, to get Cryptic to fix it, along with some pretty obvious ship errors.

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Survivor of Romulus
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Posts: 1,459
# 60
02-02-2013, 05:32 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by tacofangs View Post
I think one thing that many people overlook when they say, "Just have fans build it!" is that everything that goes into the game has to be built in specific ways. Ships more than most, as they are basically a character. They need to not only fit into a triangle count, and a material count, but they have to be split up into multiple parts, with pivots in specific locations for customization. They have to have all of their UVs set up in a way to work well with multiple different materials. They have to be set up with nodes for every phaser strip, blinky light, photon torpedo launcher, and tractor beam. They have to be named in specific ways, and a million other things I'm sure I don't know about since I'm not a ship artist.
You forget, that the models for Bridge commander are not simply "pretty models". They have to have all the hard points set up too. Every weapon, every glowy bit, every system is a node that has to be placed correctly and have any needed resources (sounds etc) associated correctly and included with the ship otherwise it will crash the game out all by itself.
For example, is that torpedo launcher hard-point located outside of the ship according to the @N@SHIP.Py? If so, CRASH. Are the torpedo to be used and the associated sounds all correctly referenced? Any one typo, CRASH.
Heck, look at ST: Excalibur (The fan made indie remake of BC). The ship hard-point system for that game is already more complex than the system used in BC.

I haven't even touched on the models and texturing for those games.

Quote:
The point being, making a ship for OUR game, is a much more involved process than just making a good looking model in Maya for renders.
It is difficult. I don't know from experience of course, but if it was so easy then everyone would be at it.

Quote:
All of that stuff makes it difficult to outsource. There are many iterations, many things need to be double, triple, octuple checked, and when something breaks, there needs to be someone to debug/fix it who knows what they're doing.
Please tell us, how many of the new ships have customizable physical parts? We get to VA level ships where the customization of physical parts basically stops and the only possible changes are texture based iirc. The VA retrofits of lower ranked ships have the customization, but the new ones (jem dread, wells, oddy, Galor, D'kora) all lack physical customization.

Btw, would you be able to find out for us what kind of polygon budget the artists have to work within, as well as how many texture maps, what size those maps can be and whether or not the mesh needs to be unified?
It's just something that I'm sure a lot of us would like to know. Heck, I might even be able to use that info to twist the arms of one or two BC modders into making some samples of ships within the graphical constraints.
The lack of solid info in that regard is one of the main reasons those guys who mod for BC/Excalibur who also play STO simply will not consider it. They are some of the most obsessive Trek fans I have ever met, they love what they do and they also cringe at how some of the meshes in game look. Not all of them want to do it, but those that do cannot do it without knowing what the constraints are.

If the relevant constraints and parameters were set for the mesh makers among us, would the ship artists and programmers at your end be willing to have a peek at some samples if these samples were made?
There was a sig here, but I gave up. Thanks {REDACTED}
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