Glass/transparent block in special?

Discussion in 'Suggestions' started by Nightblade Greyswandir, Jun 5, 2017.

  1. Nightblade Greyswandir

    Nightblade Greyswandir Well-Known Member

    Can you make block that can be used as window glass?
    Khaine, Lord Zarnox, Jaime and 4 others like this.
  2. Dellamorte

    Dellamorte Well-Known Member

    I did ask about this some time ago and I think the devs said there are issues in implementing it.
    Jamie and Nightblade Greyswandir like this.
  3. Nightblade Greyswandir

    Nightblade Greyswandir Well-Known Member

    I can imagine that limitation comes from light rendering calculations when light goes through too many polygons on blocks. Maybe if glass blocks are as simple as possible, and just set as special blocks, not in corporations. With note in blocks description "Full responsibility of not killing your own computer is on players who use it" :D
    Shayne and {insert_name_here} like this.
  4. {insert_name_here}

    {insert_name_here} [REDACTED]

    What would the issues with implementing it be?

    I mean, I know this is a horrible thing to be relating TerraTech to (these two games are completely different), but glass blocks in Minecraft don't generate any lag. Just make them simple and there shouldn't be too many issues.
  5. Kirchhoffs

    Kirchhoffs Well-Known Member TT Translator

    Maybe give a trasparent block some shine and borders? Anyways, i would love glass. I build lots of things and glass is a thing i always want to have.
    {insert_name_here} likes this.
  6. Nightblade Greyswandir

    Nightblade Greyswandir Well-Known Member

    Rendering is deferent in Minecraft and in TT, as blocks in Minecraft have lower resolution and not so manu polygons, so it is about rendering textures, not shapes. In TT beside textures there is also rendering of shapes, and shapes of glass can take huge amount of rendering power, making TT unplayable. There are some solutions for that also, but it is on developers to check if they can do it on some easy way.
    Lord Zarnox and watlingj like this.
  7. Dellamorte

    Dellamorte Well-Known Member

    I went back and looked on the forum and it looks like it has never been answered on the forum here before so I might tag @zanzistar and @Jason Howard and ask for input, I think it might have been a Q&A stream I when I asked about it before.
  8. Jason Howard

    Jason Howard PAYLOAD STUDIOS

    We're trying to avoid transparent materials, it's a significant rendering overhead because of the sorting.
    I believe Minecraft uses 1 bit alpha which is much more efficient to render but that wouldn't really suit the style of our game.
  9. Nightblade Greyswandir

    Nightblade Greyswandir Well-Known Member

    Is it possible to keep rendering quality by using blocks that have only one surface transparent?
    So it is not transparent block but just few transparent polygons on block?
    Zed likes this.
  10. Jason Howard

    Jason Howard PAYLOAD STUDIOS

    That would certainly help but it's not really the individual blocks that are the problem, the issue (as I understand it anyway) is that if a tech is built with say 20 glass blocks in a row when they all line up in front of the camera the GPU has to calculate the sorting for 20 transparent triangles not just once but for every pixel they cover on the screen and that can really stack up.
  11. Nightblade Greyswandir

    Nightblade Greyswandir Well-Known Member

    As I remember good it is not transparency but reflection (and distortion of light rays, but if glass is plain like windows that is not issue) that make problems with rendering glass models. It can be same rendering like shield and repair bubbles. It does not have to have too much (or any) reflection.
    Lord Zarnox and Legionite like this.
  12. Zed

    Zed Well-Known Member

    Perhaps a representative window block which featured a 2-tone color scheme to use in place of an actual transparent block would be helpful as I encountered the desire for a window block in terratech recently while participating in the latest Grabbit competition during my double decker bus build...

    ended up using the smaller GSO plow blade to approximate windows since none existed. Since the proposed block would not be transparent but merely a 1x1x1 where each side had a darker border of 5% thickness with the rest of the block being a lighter solid shade of the same color would address the lack of a window block while not negatively impacting framerate.
    Boomik likes this.
  13. Jason Howard

    Jason Howard PAYLOAD STUDIOS

    Well, I have absolutely no problem making a window frame with no glass in it. I'll even put collision where the glass would be.
    In fact, apart from the reflections that would actually look more like glass wouldn't it....
  14. Nightblade Greyswandir

    Nightblade Greyswandir Well-Known Member

    Can you add some effect like bubbles have, just white-ish? Just to make it not to look like empty frame. Make something experimental and then we can test fps impact.
  15. Zed

    Zed Well-Known Member

    I wholeheartedly thank you in advance and look forward to seeing the results of your efforts in this regard; Perhaps a "tile-ing" and singular version would be best to accommodate approximations of windows of varying sizes would provide additional utility without too much additional effort once the dual-tone color scheme is derived?
  16. Legionite

    Legionite Airborne AI Assembler

    Maybe a opaque version colored like the blue cab windshield with a frame around it could be an idea...
    (It would also light up like the cab windshield at night)
  17. elfdrow

    elfdrow Well-Known Member

    unity eats more resources from semi transparent materials than a normal flat color (depending on the shader but...)

    specially glossy materials. so if we are having lag issues with flat mats. I can see why the devs don't want it lol

    still it would be nice to have it.
    imagine a production line that you can visually supervise. while keeping the core protected.

    quoting homer simpson *Drools*
    Lord Zarnox and Legionite like this.
  18. Zed

    Zed Well-Known Member

    After much searching I believe I have found an example of a transparent window within a Unity Application:

    The Name of the program is "Software Inc" and has multiple types of transparent windows which can be viewed through from multple free floating camera Angles.

    Hopefully this discovery will be of some help with regard to incorporating transparent decorative blocks within Terratech.

    Edit #1 : ScreenCaptured the relevant photo as the previous URL contained an expletive.
    Last edited: Aug 17, 2017
  19. Shayne

    Shayne Well-Known Member

    I'm not completely sure, but I think that Robocraft is based on the unity system, and it also uses glass blocks as cosmetics. *NOTE! If you want to look at glass cubes on robocraft, look at them now, as they are being changed to crate only by the 24th of august this year. (4 days from this post.) But they are glass cubes that can be seen through, and are based on a block building system not too far from terratech, although they have CPU levels, and are multiplayer. To be honest, Terratech is kind of similar to Robocraft early alpha, where they had no CPU levels, or caps on what you could build.
  20. Zed

    Zed Well-Known Member

    Hopefully this idea along with others will generate renewed discussion now that Terratech is slowly approaching 0.8 Stable.

    I for one look forward to this feature being implemented as it would make creative builds more enjoyable.

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