LOD models! I hate ambassadors, diplomacy is dead.

Discussion in 'Team Fortress 2 Talk' started by Ravidge, Dec 6, 2010.

  1. Ravidge

    aa Ravidge Grand Vizier

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    Alright so, ever since valve started using c_models instead of w_ and v_ (world, view) they have stopped making LOD models.

    And people are saying their framerate gets worse every major update? Maybe because everyone is running around with a million polygons extra on their bodies, I don't know.

    I'm well aware that polygons are cheap to render, ridiculously so. But it adds up. I've made some practical tests and numbers don't lie, I could easily get a 10-20 fps increase (depending on what other quality settings I choose) just from weapons being updated.


    For whatever reason I made this amazing html site devoted to the problem, so I don't have to explain it every time I try to convince people to actually LOD their shit (this goes for map props too!!).
    http://dl.dropbox.com/u/1281220/levelofdetail/index.htm

    And some extra info:
    LODs are easy to make.
    Adds virtually nothing to the filesize.

    Why isn't it happening?

    EDIT:
    5 weapons have received LODs... there's still 70 weapon models without.
    Updated site with new graph
     
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    Last edited: Jan 23, 2011
  2. Lord Ned

    Lord Ned L7: Fancy Member

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    It's work.

    Edit: There was actually word from... Robin(?) in an interview I think a while ago that said eventually they'd overhaul the original weapons and move them to the c_model system and give all of the weapons LOD's. I'm sure that's dead though.
     
  3. Mr. Wimples

    Mr. Wimples L6: Sharp Member

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    Though I may not benefit as much from this, I've got friends with lower-end machines that would be thrilled to have this fps boost. Is there a way for someone in the community to make these as a mod or something? I have no idea how these models are swapped into the game so I may be completely wrong.

    Additionally, don't forget about all those new, expensive hats!
     
  4. theharribokid

    aa theharribokid

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    I'm pretty sure it's just a case of the TF2 team cramming to get the next update out and shipping it out as long as it works. It looks like they have recently however been making some efforts to convert some v_/w_models to c_models as NeoDement has noticed that new materials related to a c_models Natasha has been left in the game files and I think it was Daimao (the guy whose mod is now used for the hat painting system officially) was saying that Valve have said recently that they are still working on the c_model conversions.

    The problem with trying to add LODs to any of the c_models is that as far as I am aware, none of the decompilers released for TF2 are able to get fully working c_models from the GCfs, however Daimao has been making his own decompiler and has been releasing progress shots of him trying to get everything to decompile properly (L4D2 is support too apparently) over at Facepunch. So hopefully the release of that will be soon seeing as Sparkwire, a tf2 mod animator has been given c_models of the soldiers arms from Daimao to work with, its looking positive. Hopefully once it's released we'll be able make our own LODs.
     
  5. Lancey

    aa Lancey Currently On: ?????

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    You've shot Robin an e-mail, of course?
     
  6. Prestige

    aa Prestige im not gay anymore

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    hats > all

    well not really its more
    gameplay > hats & cosmetics > optimization, bug fixes, and leetle things like this

    i say 6 months at the least until they add LOD's.
     
  7. The Political Gamer

    aa The Political Gamer

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    Daimao mentioned something about his next project being a full re-optimization of TF2's weapons so this should be fixed within the next few months.
     
  8. Rexy

    aa Rexy The Kwisatz Haderach

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    From experience, I can say it takes almost no extra effort to add efficient, good looking and functional LODs to your models in source. It's a very quick step in the workflow. Why Valve stopped creating them in the first place is a complete mystery, and is a little depressing. If the artists (or whoever was in charge of this part of the workflow) had taken the time to make 1-2 LODs per item when they were added to the game, this would have never been an issue. The excuse that the team was so busy shipping and preparing the update really doesn't strike me as a valid one. A person could decompile the models and create LODs and recompile for about 5-10 minutes each--a team of 2 people doing this could finish in about 4 hours. And even less time if Valve employees were to do it, since they'd have all the source files ready to go.
     
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  9. What Is Schwa

    What Is Schwa L6: Sharp Member

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    Added file size. I hear some people bitch about how big tf2 is already.

    Some people.
     
  10. HellJumper

    aa HellJumper

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    I couldn't have put it better myself. I think we were actually having this conversation before. Cough Direct Hit.
     
  11. Dark

    Dark L4: Comfortable Member

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    i was noticing that the beta seemed to play more smoothly then the game. When i was playing today i noticed many more people were using the base weapons then in the regular game, no one has any hats or cosmetic items either (but the spy, but hes usually invisible anyway.) I guess i know why is was better now.

    ps. Rexy, you should make all of the lod models yourself and then offer them as ransom for a job.
     
  12. Loc_n_lol

    Loc_n_lol L10: Glamorous Member

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    I think most people noticed a significant improvement in the beta. It's hard to say if the lack of hats and unlocks is the cause, probably not, because most people are sporting an ellis cap at least, and the polycount weapons aren't particularly worse than Valve unlocks in terms of high polys / no lods.
     
  13. honeymustard

    honeymustard L9: Fashionable Member

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    This makes sense. Hopefully Valve address the situation soon. Not that I have a fps issues..
     
  14. EArkham

    aa EArkham Necromancer

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    The polygon numbers you have are double what the actual mesh has, due to "$cloakPassEnabled" "1" in the vmt files of the weapons. It's supposedly a bug with HLMV... I don't know what effect on performance in the game this doubling actually has, if any.

    Still, it's like Rexy says. Most 3D programs have a built-in polygon reduction tool. While they usually require some tweaks to get a "perfect" mesh, that's really unnecessary for LODs since you're not going to see them closely anyway. Five minutes includes making the LOD plus saving it AND recompiling the qc. It's almost meaningless effort.

    Kep
     
  15. Rexy

    aa Rexy The Kwisatz Haderach

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    That's what cp_manor_event was for. And it clearly didn't work. My emails of applications were probably just thrown in the recycle bin. There's nothing a bunch of LODs can do that manor didn't do better (including demonstrate great use of LODs).
     
  16. Okrag

    aa Okrag Wall Staples

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    You should've put your applications in the map. That way they can't throw them away.
     
  17. grazr

    aa grazr Old Man Mutant Ninja Turtle

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    They can refuse props. Just because it's in a map they intend to buy doesn't mean the models will make it.
     
  18. Terr

    aa Terr Cranky Coder

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    I feel your pain. I dropped off USB sticks with PackBSP at their headquarters and never even got an e-mail back.

    Valve's level of reaction to fans and the community seems to be wildly variable.
     
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  19. Acumen

    aa Acumen Annoyer

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    Oh please :)
    It's just a company in the end. Making great use of LOD surely won't get you a job at a game company. And it happens at big companies that not the right people get the stuff, they're supposed to get. Maybe you could have sent another email notifying that you've got an awesome tool in the works..

    Anyways, not the current topic ^^

    We can always make an awesome indie game and get bought by valve *hint*
     
  20. Ravidge

    aa Ravidge Grand Vizier

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    You are right, I did not know about this.
    The numbers in my list are indeed doubled.. the results and complaints still stands though.

    I went and made a 12500 polygon sphere model and compiled twice, using the $cloakpassenabled 1 in one of the vmt's. As expected the HLMW thinks they have different polycount (12500 vs 25000).
    Did a quick test and I can safely say that the vmt parameter does not affect the framerate, it only messes up HLMW.

    http://dl.dropbox.com/u/1281220/SS-2010.12.07-20.51.38.jpg
     
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