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grumpycat
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Ash and Blight Storm concepts

Ok, so this needs to be used as a reference for actual modelers to be able to sink there teeth into.

This is not abstract, not a generic picture of particles that fill up the screen.

Think about what a blight storm might look like on the Red Mountain from a distance. Think what would it look like inside it. And remember that these will be physical models, so needs to be specific.

Same with the Ash storms, these come in at you from a distance, foreboding.

A very very hard challenge indeed as its a specific reference for modelers.

Edited by: grumpycat on 01/05/2016 - 20:53
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Something related, but I don

Something related, but I don't know if you guys have though about it, is Dirty Thunderstorms from volcanic activity.

Dragomir
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Lightning and thunder was a

Lightning and thunder was a part of the concept for a long time I think :D

lukkar
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Maybe it's not exactly

Maybe it's not exactly concept about that but I used this ideas a long time ago.

When I will find time I will try do concepts with rock as visual indicator. I'm sure not exactly who responsible for that but I need to know what we can do. For example: changed atmosphere perspective, dust clouds, dust devils an so on...

lukkar
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Just one big cyclone visible

Just one big rotating cyclone visible from every site of island. I'm not sure about color, more dull theoretically looks more correctly, but I prefer reddish version. It simply looks cooler and fits to name "red mountain"

And how atmosphere changes when you are closer and closer.

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That would be awesome if mod

That would be awesome if mod would include this latest storm.
Maybe it even must аffect to player greatly (making it cough, limit stamina, slow movements or even knock down).

I wonder why current/everyday storm around mountain slope and surface isnt depicted. It must look like it always in ash clouds, going down and circulating around. IMO you used too intensive colors.

lukkar
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In last one I imagined

In last one I imagined situation when visibility is very low, but lightings are very frequent, so you have cool "revealing moments". Of course then we should add notification for epileptics on gamebox :P

-------------

@alysander

This could be very good when you combine it with ashlander's armors.

alysander
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Yep. I had it in mind.

Yep. I had it in mind. Player must feel like a astronaut.

lukkar
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With added atmosphere

With added atmosphere perspective it could look like that

I personally prefer hidden mountain beneath sandstorm, for four reasons. First reason is that it hides some mystery, player don't know what is going under it. So when, he want to know, he have to be on place. It encourages to traveling. Second thing is that when player will end main quest then he/she gets additional reward as clear depiction of Red mountain. Third thing is that when you are on place with weak visibility you have impression that the whole mountain is bigger than in reality (remember fog effect in MW). Fourth thing is that this well visible, suspended threat reminds local folks about Dagoth power.

I think storm could be even growing a bit, during main quest. For example on some ending stage it can be near Maar Gan or Ald'ruhn. Just to build tension.

-------------------

I don't know what is on the end of this tornado, but this storm should have sth similar.

grumpycat
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This is nice lukkar. Try and

This is nice lukkar. Try and imagine if it was a polygon model how would it be constructed? Any help goes a long way, even if it turns out its not the correct method. I like me some brainstorming.

Also do this for the Ash Storm if you're inclined. Physical models.

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sometimes i think skywind

sometimes i think skywind should just be an illustrated book done entirely by lukkar :p

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This can be done as set of

This can be done as set of tubes/cones:

lukkar
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With tubes cones, it could

@alysander

With tubes, cones, it could look like surface of Jupiter. I'm not fan of this lid on it too. I like dust cloud from volcanic fumes. Can be volcanic fume just separate asset? Added after defeating Dagoth. We can just rationalize it that Dagoth uses it as "storm" engine.

-----------------------------------------

Modeling this one would be really hard, it is very dusty. I really want to avoid hard edges. This is my only idea how can it be done. But I'm not sure if it is good direction or not. Btw. I think this version needs some heavy coding.

I think it will hard to depict it by "modeling it". Better option is just use planes, always faced to player. Sth like in doom. This is BIIIIG asset, so player will never get chance to see some bigger parallax. One big whirl with planes.

1. Is dust halo which could be blocked vertically but not horizontally to player.

2. Is main core just invisible cylinder with pined up planes. It could be be several layers. Narrower cylinder in the bigger one. With global alfa for each one layer 60%, 80% 100%. Whatever. When you will be closer clouds could be overlapping each other. Always faced to player. To make impression of movement upright they can be placed like corkscrew.

3. This is lower section of Cyclon. It get some additional dust halo too. Overlapping planes could well behave on edges too. The main problem is when player will be getting closer and closer. Is any possibility to create some special kind of LOD?

Just appearing additional cloned planes when you are closer. Can be it png sequence?

4. One layer with lighting, other with layer dodge?

5. Top layer of clouds could be just some rotating or animated texture. Definitely easiest one.

To create better transition we can change atmosphere before cyclone. (zone 1,2,3) This trick can fool a bit player. Especially when he have to look upright near core. And of course we don't care about look of cyclon when we are inside.

-----------------------

For visibility effect I can't find out nothing really sophisticated. Just add fog effect, appearing-disappearing  "clouds" in the background, light halo, adding tint yellow->brown->red, additional layer for screen with particles and red sky for last one.

Dust near surface could be just appearing sprites.

To get better effect most clouds will have brighter edges, darker inner. Not affected by dynamic light. But they need a lot of variety to avoid repetitive.

-----------------------

1. Is it technically possible?

2. Is it too much work?

3. Is it some way to make it more simple but keep good look?

4. Is it heavy for PC?

5. Are animated planes needed or not?

6. Will it work?

If someone has some better ideas I'm glad to see it.

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What type of .DDS textures

What type of .DDS textures are needed? Not sure on how they should work, can they be animated or do you need sets of them?

lukkar
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I'm not responsible for

I'm not responsible for execution. I think best option is create those subassets by someone who has experience in some special movie effects. In aftereffects, vegas (I know this one only from hearing), nuke (I barely touched ages ago)... whatever. Then it is possibility to create a lot of looped animated sets, just by changing sliders. To save some power, some of them could recurring. But it can be even static texture. On conceptual stage it is hard to say it will work or not. Maybe just create some simple physical object and add to it skyrim clouds? Just to see how it could work.

What type of .DDS textures are needed

It's not question to me, I'm only concept guy here.

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I think the mod "Real Clouds"

I think the mod "Real Clouds" by Soolie uses many particle effect sprites as well, to create pseudo-volumetric clouds. I'd really like if ash/blight storms looked something like this. I play Skyrim with that mod and damn it's amazing...

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Would be great, i am not sure

Would be great, i am not sure that billboards used in Skyrim.

grumpycat
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Alright Ravanna and I have

Alright Ravanna and I have been working on Ash Storms. Lots of technical things to work through as you'll see in the video, but still keen to show off the general idea :)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TNhxKzocRCc

 

FYI I'm using a trigger to start off the Ash Storm weather and because have to use a simplified collision for this type of thing, the accuracy is really hard. Because the scale is so large in the game world, its hard to get it 100% accurate.

An alternate is to actually add volume to the first inner part of the storm to ensure less funky transitions.

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Great news.

Great news.
---
Maybe, it d look some better if its surface would move slower (or with additional semi-transparent surface, that moves slower).

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Grumpy, I'm not sure of your

Grumpy, I'm not sure of your limitations with this model, but have you thought of having the switchover in weather occur farther out than the actual model? If you could attach a  trigger box which is about 50 meters wider and use the change weather rather than force weather command, you'd get a transition into the weather type before hitting the mesh.

Upon getting close to the mesh, if you have the close range model (non-LOD) have some heavy dirt storm fx attached around the base, you could obscure the solid mesh face with a more ambient thick crap to make it harder to see it as a solid thin wall. Or simply making the base semi-transparent or the close range model semi-transparent may work if you've got the weather kicking slightly before reaching the actual model.

btw, Looks amazing.

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What Taerkalith said

What Taerkalith said basically, perhaps also add a special "watery eyes" blur FX and darkening of the screen when entering the mesh (which could be disabled if wearing closed helmet/goggles perhaps?).

And having much more particle dust inside it would also help, as a part of the mesh rather than weather. A bit in front, a lot inside, to give it more volume rather than having it look like a paper thin wall with a texture on it ;)

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+1 for expanded weather

+1 for expanded weather trigger/edge.
---
how it will work globally? would it be scaled/beating-like-a-heart in daily period or would it be rotating with some "galactic arms"

 

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how it will work globally?

how it will work globally? would it be scaled/beating-like-a-heart in daily period or would it be rotating with some "galactic arms"

It will have regular cycles (beating-like-a-heart)...lol

So my thoughts for the Blight Storm is that it will also be a thing that is not always ON. The main reason is that I think its important to be able to see the Red Mountain in all its glory thorough-out the story. If its blanketed in the Blight Storm the entire time, its possible that you don't even know a mountain is there.

Further to this, a question to the team, is the possibility that for short periods, the Blight Storm is not always ON when you are actually on the Mountain. This is a bit of a trend away from the original, as it was always on. But the reason for this is that actually viewing Vvardenfell from the new extra heights is something spectacular. Its a real shame if you walk up the new mountain, that you literally can't see anything during the Blight storm. You might as well be walking in an interior.

Now I know that when you finish the main quest the Blight storm is a thing of the past, and could be thought of as another "reward" so the player goes outside and gets the spectacular vistas, but I feel it would be a shame not to have brief moments where while doing the main story you get to enjoy all the hard work we have done. It helps to give a sense of scale, gives the player impact of what they are climbing, etc.

Vote:

1) Blight Storm always on

2) Blight Storm periodic at distance but always on when on the mountain

3) Blight Storm periodic and brief moments when off when on the mountain

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I'd go with 2. It could have

I'd go with 2. It could have heavier and more subtle variants in the weather altering over time though, perhaps done via volumetric FX, so that even though it's kind of still ashy windy and scary, the visibility might get a bit better from time to time.

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2nd variant is simplest and

2nd variant is simplest and most plausible to get. With minimum in GhostFence and maximum at not-so-far from coastal lines.
But when you'll made it, you could greatly increase its' spectacular by adding moving semitransparent walls of storm/dust (or maybe whirlwinds?).

Of course this is ideal state - i am not any sure if this could be made on pretty limited engine/CK.

 

 

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2

2

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3

3

2

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1) During main quest, the

1) During main quest, the more far you are, the more storm is strong. It could even expand to edges of Ald ruhn' at the very end of main quest as example of growing anger of Dagoth Ur. Also it could be great reminder of hanging danger above residents of Vvanderfel. We can assume that Blight storm is just other tool of Dagoth dominance and he uses heart and volcano to expand his influence.

After main quest, mountain is quite clear but covered with clouds to hide some more prominent buildings and give impression that it is higher then in reality (when you don't see buildings/trees to compare, the whole mountain seems to be gigantic). Also the whole weather on island seems to be more clear and less foggy. Cool parallel as some kind of "bright future".

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number 2 . Assuming that "

number 3 . Assuming that " blight storm  off", does not mean clear sky and perfect vision.

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2 works.

2 works.

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Anyways, there could be some

Anyways, there could be some moments when you see whole cyclone, like in the main quest after leaving Vivec Palace. Just image this view from palace's stairs. Maybe storm will be more visible from distance during player's achievements in main story?

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That would be a really cool
That would be a really cool moment! Also, 2, but with variation on the mountain if possible
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looking good

looking good

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Vita wrote:

Vita wrote:

number 3 . Assuming that " blight storm  off", does not mean clear sky and perfect vision.

3 for me as well.

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2 sounds good

2 sounds good

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I stick with 2nd option.

I stick with 2nd option.
Always on when in the mountain (because, after all, Dagoth Ur's power has much more influence from within the Ghostfence, into the Red Mountain), periodic when at a distance.

However, Lukkar said something very interesting... Throughout the main quest, the Blight Storm can get stronger and stronger, appearing more often and surrounding the towns, villages and deserts nearby.

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i chose 3, or WHATEVER IS

i chose 3, or WHATEVER IS EASIEST < best answer to get this sodding game done.

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Consider the first line you


Consider the first line you hear (from 13:51) as my reply :P

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3K6BflF9fA4&t=13m51s

grumpycat
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Latest and greatest effort

Latest and greatest effort for the Ash Storm. Vita worked his magic; smoke effects, lightning and sequences of growing, moving and ending.

https://youtu.be/rtiobS0k1Dg?t=49s

I also have an idea for the Blight. The thing I really like don't like about having an over-the-top tornado like system encompassing the mountain, is that it becomes too much of a dominate aspect of the background, too distracting to the eye if you are exploring in general.

What I think would be awesome is to make the blight more like smoke trails down the mountain. You have red smoke trials that move and follow contours down, especially the paths. I got the idea after remembering the infamous "smoke monster" from Lost. So the idea is that it would almost have a living feel to it, as it follows and twists down set paths, which ordinary smoke wouldn't do. Its like Dagoths power is willing it to find its victims.

This way you can still see parts of the mountain and wouldn't be so over-the-top. Plus it give us a chance for some spots to be able to see parts of Vvardenfell while climbing to the top.

They way to implement it, will be good old fashion landscaping. Gothic can add the objects, much like lava flowing down. This will be a new particle effect.

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The storm looks amazing!

The storm looks amazing!

From a distance, it looks... I don't know... Kinda strange... But when you get closer to it, it feels great!
The transition from no-storm to storm is very good, the ash storm is awesome...

It'll be perfect when adding Blight storm with red particles, IMHO.

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Love the look of the ash

Love the look of the ash storm. Looks sorta odd forming in mid air but the look of it is amazing when the storm iterates over time when it's a full sized storm. Stuff like this is what makes me excited for this project great job. That blight storm idea sounds awesome too, can't wait to see something like that implemented Ravanna and Happychappy.. I mean grumpycat! :P

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Hmmm, is it me, or does the

Hmmm, is it me, or does the position of the storm depend on the position of the player? I mean, would it also form mid-air if the player wasn't mid-air at that point? Cause dust storms go from the ground up, not the other way around :P Anyway, this looks absolutely amazing.

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Alright i think we have a

Alright i think we have a Beta version. All expectations exceeded. There is still some work to do on the transition (can still see the model as it passes overhead) Imagine Cliff Racers circling as it grows then sweeps in! They get unsettled in their nest and fly around it waiting for it to pass. So I'm not kidding I'll look to make this happen.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9TG2mTTjw9A

 

 

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This is why I came running

This is why I came running back to the project when I should be resting. you bastard.
Its beautiful

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That is magnificent. I see

That is magnificent. I see what you mean about the model in the middle period, but the storm looks nearly perfect both at the beginning and when you're in the midst of it.

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Holy shit!

Holy shit!

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That´s freaking amazing!

That´s freaking amazing! Maybe it´s a nice detail, if players body is covered in dust, after leaving the storm. Effect from the sandblow-attack by Dragonborns dust atronachs could be used? (Sorry, if this was posted above before, didn´t found.)

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Looks outstanding, very

Looks outstanding, very imposing. I'd run for cover if I saw that in game. 

Will there be milder versions of the ash storms that happen from time to time? With all the lightning and the sheer size of the storm (does it rival the mountain?) it seems a touch too apocalyptic, given that I thought ash storms were a fairly common occurrence in Morrowind's north.  

Just a forum lurker's two cents. 

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It seems like the visibility

It seems like the visibility inside the storm has been increased? Like you can see Ald'ruhn towers and Silt Strider from pretty far away. I think it would be much better if the visibility was much more limited, like it was in the previous previews. Ashstorms will be more brief than in Morrowind, so they can have much bigger impact on visibility.

Also, I think the frequency of the lightning FX could be turned down a little. It will seem more natural that way, and less overdone. Also good for the dramatic effect. You look at it and go "that's one scary cloud", then BAM! A lightning strikes - holy crap, I better hide. This frequency would be fine for more intimidating version of it though - the Blightstorm.

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Yeah also one more suggestion

Yeah also one more suggestion, to add red tint when you are really deep inside. This is the same effect when sun is red at morning/evening. And of course it looks more hellish.

When it comes to lighting, it would be nice to appear them not at once and also I agree with Dragomir what he said already.

These are just small things, it is great already.

 

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Idea for later versions:

Idea for later versions: would be nice to add random blur effect (with some blackened monitor depicting blinking) in storm.
Any physiological reactions from player (idle anim of hand blocking face and cough) could increase immersion dramatically.

For effects on personage stats i would recommend to drain stamina regeneration to 10-15% of normal level (and dropping down when player in storm without gas mask for long time). After 10 mins in dust storm without equipment player must die when his stamina regeneration drops to 0.

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