Improving LOD management: a practical approach

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mtarini

Sergeant Knight
It is great to have Level Of Detail (LOD) in M&B, but it can be improved much with a little effort from the devs.

Simply, the threshold values (the ones determining which LOD is to be used in a given moment) should be dynamically increased/decreased according to current FPS.

In other words, if the FPS is low, then less detailed LODs should be used even at closer distances, while, as long as the FPS is high enough, detailed LODs are used even for stuff that is quite far away. Every time the FPS is below a certain value, decrease thresholds, and the other way 'round


Let me show two opposite scenarios where this simple approach would greatly enhance current experience:

(1) when lots of fighters are in a close furious melee. Currently, they are all hi-res because they are close, even if the game has started lagging.
In this case smooth frame rate is so important for gameplay that, if it is necessary, lower LOD should clearly be used instead.

(2) when randomly wandering in a city, with very low stress on the machine and high FPS. Currently you still have got to see low res models at mid distance even if you can afford a better quality in this case. A bad side effect of this is that you clearly see popping artifacts when LOD is switched.




BTW, the LOD is really well done. It depends on screen size rather than distance. For example, try running the game in a window ard reducing window size: the game switches to lower LOD (even if subjects are at the same distance). That's the right approach. Just needs to be improved as discussed above.
 

Merlkir

great suggestion! I thought about that first situation too, but I didn't know the LOD works like that in MaB.


On the other hand, this is a fact :smile: people can give you support, but that's all they can do. Since you're right about it being a very low effort addition, it might be good to PM Armagan about it :wink:


BTW: that autoadjust option for graphics doesn't affect LOD? I think something like that is in the options since 0.894
 

Tiberius

Sergeant Knight
WBM&BWF&SNWVC
Exelent Idea, I remember that program for morrowind (morrowind FPS something) that automatically changed your "fog" distance if your fps dropped under a certain number.
 

Yoshiboy

Count
M&BWB
Also we could probably do with a few more LODs. The switches can be kinda obvious (and really annoying if you're like me and notice them once). And real use of MIP maps....and procedurally generated LODs like the multires modifier...and the list goes on.
 

Volkier

Sergeant Knight
Tiberius said:
Exelent Idea, I remember that program for morrowind (morrowind FPS something) that automatically changed your "fog" distance if your fps dropped under a certain number.

Only problem with that would be - you turn left to look at the battle, and suddenly deadly fog engulfs the battlefield. You turn right, and you see nice clear sunny skies. Would ruin the feel of the game completely.

Having said all that though, personally I feel fog can be a great tool for helping with fps - however more of the system used in "Tribes 2" for example - whereby you can change the slider yourself to increase / decrease the distance when fog appears.

The downside with both systems, is that currently fog actually impacts the AI archer accuracy - so both systems would screw this feature all over. Hence perhaps it may be a good idea if we shouldn't have any fog altogether ::\
 

Tiberius

Sergeant Knight
WBM&BWF&SNWVC
Volkier said:
Tiberius said:
Exelent Idea, I remember that program for morrowind (morrowind FPS something) that automatically changed your "fog" distance if your fps dropped under a certain number.

Only problem with that would be - you turn left to look at the battle, and suddenly deadly fog engulfs the battlefield. You turn right, and you see nice clear sunny skies. Would ruin the feel of the game completely.

Having said all that though, personally I feel fog can be a great tool for helping with fps - however more of the system used in "Tribes 2" for example - whereby you can change the slider yourself to increase / decrease the distance when fog appears.

The downside with both systems, is that currently fog actually impacts the AI archer accuracy - so both systems would screw this feature all over. Hence perhaps it may be a good idea if we shouldn't have any fog altogether ::\

True... besides fog sucks. It wouldn't work...
 

mtarini

Sergeant Knight
It's off topic, but, a clarification:

- increasing fog does not directly help performance a bit.
- setting the near clipping plane nearer does, thanks to view frustum culling
- fog is just a way to hide the "visual artifacts" (people disappearing) that this produces.
 
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