Sunday, May 31, 2015

Sunday, 31 May 2015

Only got about 2 hours in today (thanks to X³ Albion Prelude and its terrible interface that makes everything take 100 times longer than it should), but managed to get a couple of stuff done nonetheless.

Grabbed a trianglify background and used it as an alpha mask to blend my own two colours together (since I was too lazy to figure out how to input my own colours), and drew an ugly vector star for the background.

Now, time for today's "Did you know?"!

Did you know, the phenomenon of stars twinkling when viewed through the Earth's atmosphere is known as astronomical scintillation?

So unfortunately, making stars twinkle when you're in a spaceship is as far as I'm aware, unrealstic. As would be the parallax effect due to the sheer distance (unless you're moving at FTL speeds but I digress). And lastly, as pretty as nebulae are, they'd be nowhere as dense as the artistic impressions.

Which leaves me with the decision: what balance between realism and eye-candy do I strive for? I mean I'm not trying to make a 100% accurate space sim now am I, when all the planets have the same radius as each other and even the Sun.

Oh, I also tweaked the planet shader a bit to accept a base colour, and some random values for the bezier curves. Might work for random non-existant planets, but I still prefer my hand drawn sprites for our own solar systems' ones.

So there's the question of scale. Do you make all the celestials the same radius (and size as the player's ship)? The other end of the scale would be everything 1:1 to scale (see Elite:Dangerous) which is pretty much unfeasible for what I'm aiming for. Since, what I'm working on is heavily based on Synthetic Reality's Warpath from 1995 or so:

Decisions decisions...