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|Guest Message by DevFuse|
Posted 03 February 2011 - 07:09
First of all Id like to say these information show some very early stages, so I am not able and willing to give answers to questions regarding to release dates, thats because I havent got an idea on my own and not even the name of the version is yet clear.
What is clear is that this will be a usual update, that means that all serial codes (at least those which are legal ) can still be used and there wont be any upgrade costs to use the new functions.
Since the development is speeding forward and coming along nicely, but for sure will take some more months to finish, Id like to show some more.
In case there will be discussions about how the screenshots are already release previews I will stop to show more, because these screenshots are only limited expressive and as usual in development stages mostly show interim stages, just like these here do.
Until the new AES NG version will be released, there will be ongoing AES v2.X releases with new airports based on the old AES model, even though there might be less airports included, because a minimum of 50 work hours a week are spend on the development of AES NG.
Now we come to the technical part:
I the four year AES is now in the making, a lot of ideas have arisen of what can be done to improve AES. Several of these suggestions can actually be realized.
1.) 3D objects
A point of criticism has always been the low-detailed vehicles of AES and the adaptability to local conditions of the airports (repaints for the vehicles). Working on this has already begun and has gone pretty far until now (some of the changes can already be seen on the screenshots), but there is still some work to be done, therefore is will elaborate on this sometime later.
A substance obstacle for the expansion of functions and processes of the current AES code is the configuration of the aircraft and the therefore provided data. In the current configuration only the left hand doors and the nose wheel are defined, all the other data can only be provided thanks these definitions.
The new configuration therefore will be expanded. So from now on geometrical data of the aircraft (like the wingtip or the nosetip) will be included, but also the data which is needed to evaluate the necessary services for the airplane, like the zero fuel weight or the maximum amount of passengers. Its not yet clear what else will be included because the number of values is technically seen not infinitive, therefore it must be chosen with intent.
Also the way of how to configure the airplane will be changed. Until now it was necessary to use the external tool called AESConfig, which for sure had some advantages (like more room for explanations or little pictures), though there were still the disadvantages of the connection between the tool and the flightsim or that the configuration was not possible in fullscreen mode.
To get used to the new configuration it will take some learning and practicing, but after some time it should be possible to use it pretty quickly (everything will be described in the manual, which is recommended to be read), furthermore this actually shouldnt be a daily task. We will try to include as many already configured planes as possible. I also plan an import/export function within AESHelp, which should simplify the exchange of configuration files. Since the AES window can also be shown on a second PC via AESRemote, the configuration can also be done from that computer.
From now on the configuration also wont need these colored cubes anymore but it will show the later used vehicles. This will make the placing a lot easier, more exact and above all this configuration will show all of the already placed vehicles and will therefore help you to prevent any collisions to happen.
Here is one screenshot to show you this placement:
The red arrow marks the currently activated vehicle, which is getting placed (in this case the vehicle belongs to the cleaning crew but due to the still missing model it is shown as a cateringtruck).
Via the AES window and the F1-F12 keys the vehicle can now exactly be placed and the height can be defined. AES will now use that position.
Here are two more screenshots to show a fully defined plane, as you can see it is getting quite crowded now .
Another point which failed due to the missing configuration possibilities was the support of freighter planes. But also for these ones it will soon be possible to configure the planes as it can be seen on the following screenshot:
(the big cargoloaders are not yet available and the small ones cant reach the necessary height, but that will also be fixed)
Also the cargo door of small commuter planes which is usually on the left side can now be configured.
So much for today, this thread is now closed and will be complemented when the time has come.
Those who want to give feedback, can start a thread however Id like to appeal for some understanding if it is not possible for me answer each question, statement or wishes, because right now the I want to use my time for the ongoing development.
Many thanks to Nicolas (Delta777) for his help to translate this text
Posted 16 February 2011 - 18:08
Today I want to give same more information around the new Servicetrucks, because they are the most important visual part of AES NG.
The old vehicles, stairs etc. were a littlebit „low Poly “and use only small textures. This is surely good for the performance, but based in the quite small view distance, quite roughly.
The PC get faster the last 4 years and based on the situation, that AES will be only active on ground, when the aircraft is parked, the impact of performance is not so critical as in flight time/landing. And in FS it’s more important how the polies are defined and send to the GPU, then the absolute count of polies itself.
But I try to keep the polies as less as possible, most vehicles have less then 10.000, other up to 50.000. It’s always much more then some 100 we have now.
The most vehicles will use one, some two 1024er BMP. Normally this will be enough to have high detailed repaints possible.
The repaintkits are planed as layered PSD files. Some vehicles use for smaller parts a color area of the textures, so that the color can be changed. The bigger parts are all mapped to the texture, so Text, Logos and other paintings can be done.
It is very complex to build up all the 3D vehicles models from the base, so I search for good usable 3D Model source at the different Model shops, some invest, and it was not so easy to find Models with a moderate count of polies and specially for the Airport equipments, there are less sources.
But I found some nice useable models, some I need to reduce in polies, like the stair, which had over 140.000 and now reduced to less then 40.000, but still look’s nice and detailed.
The most time always needs the animation of the vehicles, like for the catering trucks, which I want to explain now more in detail:
3.1 Catering truck.
There are now four variations used:
- Half cabin
- Lowered cabin
- Full cabin
- special Type for Airbus A380 Upperdeck services
With the four variations it is now possible to support the complete spectrum of Airliners. Smaller aircraft will need the half- and lowered cabin Trucks. Larger aircraft, where the smaller Trucks get problems to reach the main deck, the full cabin Version is used.
For the upper deck of the Airbus A380, all this “normal” Trucks have not the size to reach this deck. Another limitation is the situation around the wing base. The truck could not drive near to the aircraft, because in this case the truck could not pull up without hitting the wing.
Therefore, the Truck will park with a distance around 4 Meters before the aircraft, the loading area will be first pulled up and then pushed toward the door.
The same trucks, but with different Texture, can also be used for the cleaning service. At some airports this is used at larger Aircraft like the B747, mostly connecting on the left side at door 3L (direct behind the wing).
Beside the animations for the loading area, also the doors are animated. This is a preparation to get visible service stuff in the scene.
But, here some more development is needed, as the animations of humans is very complex and the FSX integrated skin animation could not be used for AES, as there is no trigger and control possible for the sequences. But, maybe there is a way to find an alternative technology, some first test was successful, but the memory intensity is too high here, so that older PC get out of there limits maybe. We will see.
At the end one picture, how the A380 could look like with the new upper deck service.
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