Ensign
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 21
So what is that room we're seeing on the balloon reflections?
Republic Veteran
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 114
# 2
02-01-2013, 12:24 PM
Probably just a generic HDRI map.
Career Officer
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 1,182
# 3
02-01-2013, 12:49 PM
When I was on qo'nos, it looked like the reflection was of the courtyard map outside of the great city.
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Rihannsu
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 13,673
# 4
02-01-2013, 01:16 PM
yeah, STO "reflections" are actually an illusion. It displays something, but it doesn't render your actual environment.
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Commander
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 293
# 5
02-01-2013, 02:13 PM
Probably just the skybox for whatever map you are on.
Rihannsu
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 13,673
# 6
02-01-2013, 02:39 PM
Nah, it can't be the skybox. You see walls and stuff, but... not all of the details of the map.
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Cryptic Studios Team
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 2,092
# 7
02-01-2013, 04:55 PM
It's called a cubemap. Anywhere you see reflections in game, is actually using a cubemap. We (Environment Artists) have to generate them. So essentially, we pick a point that is roughly covers the average space, run a script that spits out 6 images, one for each orthogonal direction. Then we assemble those into a cubemap, and project that onto objects as reflections. It's static, and clearly not as accurate as realtime raytraced reflections, but it's also vastly less performance intensive.

The problem is that, since the map was created by positioning the camera at a single point, the reflections are only really accurate at that point. However, 90% of the time it isn't terribly noticeable, as long as you're using a cubemap that looks roughly like your interior. For instance, if we used a dark, red cubemap in a Fed ship interior, it would look out of place. But if we use a standard Fed interior cubemap on ESD, mostly it looks ok.
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Rihannsu
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 13,673
# 8
02-01-2013, 06:02 PM
Ah, cool. Thanks!
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Career Officer
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 3,465
# 9
02-01-2013, 06:08 PM
STO meets the Cubist Movement.

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Starfleet Veteran
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 20
# 10
02-03-2013, 03:09 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by tacofangs View Post
It's called a cubemap. Anywhere you see reflections in game, is actually using a cubemap. We (Environment Artists) have to generate them. So essentially, we pick a point that is roughly covers the average space, run a script that spits out 6 images, one for each orthogonal direction. Then we assemble those into a cubemap, and project that onto objects as reflections. It's static, and clearly not as accurate as realtime raytraced reflections, but it's also vastly less performance intensive.

The problem is that, since the map was created by positioning the camera at a single point, the reflections are only really accurate at that point. However, 90% of the time it isn't terribly noticeable, as long as you're using a cubemap that looks roughly like your interior. For instance, if we used a dark, red cubemap in a Fed ship interior, it would look out of place. But if we use a standard Fed interior cubemap on ESD, mostly it looks ok.
Now in its later days CoH did something interesting where they had cube maps for their environment reflections but if you turned your reflection quality high enough you could get real time actor (characters, players, moving things) reflections. In most cases the somewhat blurred actor reflections definitely made things look better as you didn't notice the cube map reflections as much.
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