Wednesday, December 14, 2005

The Overlay System

I have received a number of emails from people trying to use DSF2Text (a fixed version is coming real soon). From this I can only guess that people are trying to customize the global scenery!

We are working on the "overlay" system - when this is a little more hammered out (a week or two) I'll try to describe it in detail. But the basic idea is to allow additional DSFs that contain only objects and other 3-d "clutter" to be superimposed on the basic terrain, adding to or replacing the default objects.

This would have a few benefits:
- Small distribution size for custom airports and other such object-based scenery (because you don't have to redistribute our mesh).
- No legal limitations (since you don't have to copy our scenery).
- Since many overlays can go on one base, a user will be able to install a number of custom airports.
- Probably the small overlay DSFs will be easier to work with - a 25 MB DSF makes an insanely huge text file in DSF2Text.

Anyway, this is all very experimental; I will have more info soon, but all of this is subject to change. For now I can only say with certainty that we are working on this problem!


Marc said...

Is it that surprising that ppl try to customize global scenery with the seemingly available tools ?

Can't wait to see all those custom airports on that great scenery !

Overlay seems a great idea - hope you'll get it working soon.

Great work !

Benjamin Supnik said...

A little surprising, yeah. ;-) DSF2Text is a bit terrible to use...really it was originally intended as a way for programmers to more easily create DSFs. But...since it's the only game in town right now, you're right, I shouldn't be surprised.

I think we'll be able to create some easier-to-use tools in the next few months.

Marc said...

I think we'll be able to create some easier-to-use tools in the next few months.

Which might be the reason not to wait and everyone trying to get stuff done NOW *gg*

Flying mostly in germany and western euope - got V7-custom airports nearly everywhere, so I have this great-looking world-scenery as little patches all over europe only. This hurts - espacially when cruising the alps, southern france, northern spain or i.e. on approach to sylt (north-sea-island), LOWI, LOWW, or - another of my favourites - LSZS ...

DSF2Text isn't that terrible to use if it is used script-driven. Simply some drag&drop+copy&paste-action - but even that could get automated with some lines of code I guess (too lazy, too low-skilled ;) ).