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10km aircraft render range and why it is unacceptable.

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My vote for greater range as well...sometimes the planes just disappear in front of you in a not so far distance (wich is bad enough) but sometimes they APPEAR behind you from a not so far distance. This for me is the biggest problem.

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I'm a bird-watcher since childhood and I'm pretty sure that in clear weather I can spot a northern harrier at a distance of 1000+ m or a stork or heron at 1500+. Proven. Given their wingspan of 100 viz. 150 cm, they correspond to a WWII single-seater seen from 10 000+ m.

 

Of course it's not the same to see a bird when it's pointed out to you and to spot it while simply looking around, but it’s an object moving and constantly changing its shape and this way calling for your attention. Maybe it appears as tiny as a dot, but it’s a ‘blinking’ dot, so to say. A flying aircraft, although a solid shape, is not completely different either. When travelling, its relative position to you, lighting effects and reflections make it constantly changing in appearance. This is where BoX fails to render RL experience IMO.

 

If you use full zoom, a single-seater at 9000 m appears as a 7X7 pixel matrix (maximum) on a 1920X1080 display. It translates to a max 1.75X1.75 mm dot (most of the time it’s not effectively bigger than 1X0.5 mm due to aircraft shape and position), but I can live with it. My problem is that using full FOV the aircraft appears as a 2X2 pixel matrix (0.5X0.5 mm) blending into the background. A piece of dust on my screen is easier to spot. This is why I don’t consider unrealistic to fly with object markers on.

 

I understand that bigger aircraft dots would be disproportional, but making them visually more pronounced could be a solution. I mean a sort of shimmering, or something like that, which could fade out as you zoom in.

 

 

Edit: Please don't advise me to buy a bigger display with 4K resolution.

Edited by sniperton
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Bought the game last weekend on Steam (BoS, BoM + La5, Fw190A-3) and coming from a different online air combat sim with a subscription business model I love the fresh high-end visuals, love the realistic feel to the fights on the Wings of Liberty server and similar. However, like the OP points out there are some issues with Situational Awareness and the provided ability (or lack thereof) to ID bogeys visually without the use of tags.

 

Yes the render distance is a issue, 10k is too close for much in terms of pre-merge positioning to take place. Also it seems all aircraft are reduced to grey smudge regardless of what color paint is on the airframe. The occasional glint or glare of yellow/red would go a long way towards being able to ID bogeys at extended ranges. From what I understand, the a/c render distance is not so much a local load/render issue as it is a server load issue.

 

Anyway, a dot representation of distant bogeys with a occasional tint or glare of recognition color would go a great distance towards improving the situation. Also, if there would be server settings available to set friendly / enemy tags on / off and also define the distance at which tags are to be shown, that would provide the community with more options to define their own preferred playstyle. One could argue that radio communication among friendly aircraft would make identification that much easier and therefore friendly tags would be visible at say 4k distance (a distance at which a military pilot should have NO problem whatsoever to visually ID any aircraft, regardless of angle). Therefore it would also be possible to ID bogeys as bandits when closing and no friendly tag appears, this would make the ID possible but would retain the difficulty in spotting and tracking bandits and thus the most important elements of the combat would be maintained at a very challenging level.

 

Just some thoughts and suggestions on the matter. But it's funny how the easiest aspects of real flying, the visual impressions and feel as you experience the plane and environment from the cockpit, becomes the most challenging aspects in a virtual environment. Quite frankly I feel blind as a bat when flying on the multiplayer servers without tags. There is no possibility for me at all to have a good situational awareness due to the way the aircraft are rendered, friends and enemies alike.

Considering that historically most of the air combats that took place on the eastern front were below 2000 meters, according to Günther Rall as that's what he stated in his biography 'My Logbook'. The exception to that rule was recon flights, but it's a fact that the nature of the air war on the eastern front was very different from that in the west. Perhaps the short render range is a way the developers try to enforce this low-altitude environment?

Edited by 33vortex
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I'll chime in on this and agree with you all, and the thread starter (better late than never right..?).

 

 

 

They're working on it. It's been improved on the original build already and the Battle of Midway (recon planes need to be able to see ships) necessitates even further improvements but everything comes at a cost.
 

 

If this is the case, I sincerely hope they do something about it before midway is released..  :unsure: it is sorely needed, and will only make this great game a whole lot better.

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If this is the case, I sincerely hope they do something about it before midway is released..  :unsure: it is sorely needed, and will only make this great game a whole lot better.

 

 

It will not happen.

 

There will be improvements to the atmosphere and visibility, but Jason Williams has said there will be no change to how objects are drawn.

 

https://forum.il2sturmovik.com/topic/30809-game-version-2012-discussion-hs-129-kuban-map-fm-update-new/page-8?do=findComment&comment=504542

 

IL-2:BoX continues to improve, however on the matter of the object rendering distance we will all need to learn to work with the system as it is.

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There will be improvements to the atmosphere and visibility, but Jason Williams has said there will be no change to how objects are drawn.

 

Aw man I didn't see that.. 

 

That's a bummer. It's awesome how much the game has improved, but it's kinda second imho to something as important as render distance. Makes this awesome game they've created feel somewhat void when you're flying around in a little isolated bubble.

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We can barely see the ground at 10+km, this has to be increased by at least factor 8 first. Flying at 1500+m altitude, you're completely blind if not looking straight down and it's impossible to navigate properly derpyconfused.png

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I've been noticing pop-in aircraft more I really wish they'd take a look at this and increase the distance some even if it's just using simple approximate dots (not necessarily black dots but subtle colors to blend with the atmosphere) would be a great enhancement.

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Aw man I didn't see that.. 

 

That's a bummer. It's awesome how much the game has improved, but it's kinda second imho to something as important as render distance. Makes this awesome game they've created feel somewhat void when you're flying around in a little isolated bubble.

 

I guess it is the absolut maximum for this engine and we never get more viewrange, sad. :(

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We can push for changes because they cannot release one map after another and don't deal with it. I don't think Jason said it will not be done or that it can't be done. He was mentioning about the haze.

 

I'm starting to play multiplayer now (after the Kuban patch -- with shadows and new FMs -- became a deal breaker) and I'm starting to find difficulties regarding aircraft render range. I am already beginning to realize the distances that the planes pop up and disappear (unbelievable the video above) and I am already noticing the "bubble" in which we are flying and it is very limiting. And the argument to use TS to find aircraft is sort of silly to say the least.

 

I wonder how these things go on mostly unnoticed map after map.

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Bubble indeed. Is it a sphere, or a cylinder? I guess it's a sphere.. So flying at high altitude mean lower altitude bomber will render when it's too late..

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in war thunder its very dificult to spot distant planes as well but isnt camouflaged for a reason?

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I guess it is the absolut maximum for this engine and we never get more viewrange, sad. :(

 

I believe that it is not.    What Jason actually said was  "This will not change how objects are drawn. Only terrain and horizon. "    That was in a discussion about the horizon mist issue, not about objects; separate issues. 

 

The broader question of object render range will have to be tackled for the Pacific even if aircraft stay as they are. If you have major capital ships pop up at 8km distance when they could easily be seen at 20+ in RL the carrier war will be unplayable and the game a laughing stock. 

Edited by unreasonable
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Bubble indeed. Is it a sphere, or a cylinder? I guess it's a sphere.. So flying at high altitude mean lower altitude bomber will render when it's too late..

 

Likewise, a bomber flying high will not see the target on the ground until its too late.

 

This visibility bubble also applies when looking through the telescoping bomb sight.

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I believe that it is not.    What Jason actually said was  "This will not change how objects are drawn. Only terrain and horizon. "    That was in a discussion about the horizon mist issue, not about objects; separate issues. 

 

The broader question of object render range will have to be tackled for the Pacific even if aircraft stay as they are. If you have major capital ships pop up at 8km distance when they could easily be seen at 20+ in RL the carrier war will be unplayable and the game a laughing stock. 

 

If its not, why isnt there any will to try it in a beta patch or something? Why they refuse to even say things like "we will see what we can do later on"? This seems to me that there is some kind of limitation which they cant maneuver around it without making the game unplayable. The short render distances for aircrafts is a joke and ships and stuff like buidlings are already popping up at very close distances. Why do you think that this will only be a problem with a pacific scenario? It will make the short render distances just more of a joke as it is now. As much as i like the game i allways hated the short render distances and this will not change it seems. I hope you will be right because i wont buy any new expansion without increased render distances and better AI.

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If its not, why isnt there any will to try it in a beta patch or something? Why they refuse to even say things like "we will see what we can do later on"? This seems to me that there is some kind of limitation which they cant maneuver around it without making the game unplayable. The short render distances for aircrafts is a joke and ships and stuff like buidlings are already popping up at very close distances. Why do you think that this will only be a problem with a pacific scenario? It will make the short render distances just more of a joke as it is now. As much as i like the game i allways hated the short render distances and this will not change it seems. I hope you will be right because i wont buy any new expansion without increased render distances and better AI.

 

My recollection of the same discussion in respect to RoF many years ago was the developers saying that in principle the draw distance could be anything you want - the problem is that the amount of work your PC must do is equal to the square of the increase in the diameter of the draw distance for ground objects - and potentially the cube for air objects.  So what looks like a moderate increase in draw distance will have a large effect. I assume that is still true for BoS, but you would need developer confirmation. 

 

Then you add in the MP fairness argument - if people could use sliders, some would be able to see further than others. 

 

So my take on it is that the restriction is not a technical limit, but a developer decision on what performance trade off they want - because if they have a high draw distance the people who cannot get decent performance using it will complain loudly in Steam reviews and so on, and the MP crowd will complain that it is not fair.

 

Personally I hate that kind of argument and want a higher draw distance - not so much for aircraft, but for static objects and so on, since currently ground attack is badly affected.  I am not saying it is only a problem with the Pacific: it is a problem now, real but not crippling.  In the Pacific there have to be changes, even if only in a new category of very large objects with an increased draw distance. Otherwise the game will be unplayable.

 

Sliders work for me, especially if it possible to have different sliders for different categories of objects.

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and want a higher draw distance - not so much for aircraft

 

The problem is, it is mainly an aircraft simulator. It seems a bit out of order to leave aircraft rendering aside. As the OP said, you do not have time to position yourself after spotting the target. If the two planes are head on, it becomes an airquake dogfight. You only have time to choose which side you're going to go around.

 

The other day I was 6-7k over a target and there was nothing around as if I was the only player on the server. But there was a full fight fest raging on below me (two different furbals) and I was just oblivious to it. I only saw it when I started to descend (because I did think the game might not be rendering targets below me). It makes the game sort of useless, do you agree?

 

Did anyone tested the distances the aircraft are appearing? Is it 10k all around or it depends on the angle?

 

Aircraft should not have slides. It should be a fixed distance for all.  

Edited by SeaW0lf

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The problem is, it is mainly an aircraft simulator. It seems a bit out of order to leave aircraft rendering aside. As the OP said, you do not have time to position yourself after spotting the target. If the two planes are head on, it becomes an airquake dogfight. You only have time to choose which side you're going to go around.

 

The other day I was 6-7k over a target and there was nothing around as if I was the only player on the server. But there was a full fight fest raging on below me (two different furbals) and I was just oblivious to it. I only saw it when I started to descend (because I did think the game might not be rendering targets below me). It makes the game sort of useless, do you agree?

 

Did anyone tested the distances the aircraft are appearing? Is it 10k all around or it depends on the angle?

 

Aircraft should not have slides. It should be a fixed distance for all.  

 

The comment in bold is the kind of thing that makes the developers' job so much harder. If the draw distance has to be the same for everyone, then it has to near the distance that can be handled by the lowest common denominator of peoples' PCs.

 

Personally I do not care if MP has one distance for all - although RoF's object sliders worked for aircraft. What I object to is these MP fairness issues crippling what people can do in SP.

 

My own preferred solution is to have different settings (or even better different sliders) for classes of objects based on their size rather than on an arbitrary category such as plane vs static object. So objects would pop up or out at the same approximate angle of width rather than the same distance.

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The comment in bold is the kind of thing that makes the developers' job so much harder. If the draw distance has to be the same for everyone, then it has to near the distance that can be handled by the lowest common denominator of peoples' PCs.

 

Personally I do not care if MP has one distance for all - although RoF's object sliders worked for aircraft. What I object to is these MP fairness issues crippling what people can do in SP.

 

My own preferred solution is to have different settings (or even better different sliders) for classes of objects based on their size rather than on an arbitrary category such as plane vs static object. So objects would pop up or out at the same approximate angle of width rather than the same distance.

My understanding was that render distance was not increased because of the load on the pc due to all the ground objects. But why can't it be extended for aircraft only and keep the terrain render as is until the graphics can be rewritten and improved?

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Increased draw distance for sure would affect amount of information exchanged between clients and servers. I don't know if there is room for that in current net code.

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seems to me it's right about time stuff like this starts getting addressed.

 

I'd gladly wait a few dev. cycles before they'd start on the pacific, if they'd first get around figuring out a way to give us realistic view distances for aircraft....

 

 

 

if this means the netcode has to be revised, then I can only urge that it gets revised.  there is more than just a few things about it that desperately need some attention. 

 

view distance has always been one of the leading shortcomings of this growingly top-notch series...

 

 if that could be sorted out, it'd be a HUGE leap into establishing this as the one-sim-to-rule-them-all, king-of-the-hill, master-blaster-of-the-universe, pinnacle-of-greatness state of the art for flight sims

Edited by 19//Moach
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My understanding was that render distance was not increased because of the load on the pc due to all the ground objects. But why can't it be extended for aircraft only and keep the terrain render as is until the graphics can be rewritten and improved?

 

I'm pretty sure it's already sorta like that. It's easier to spot a distant target than a close one. Because the distant target will be a black dot on a incomplete rendered ground (flat color). The closer one will be be a fully rendered target, with camo, above fully rendered ground. Camo + terrain make it hard to spot.

It's obvious on winter map. Being at 2k+ and trying to spot a low plane flying above a forest, almost impossible due to this and flickering trees..  :blink:

 

I can't find the War thunder update that occurred 1 or 2 years ago, they greatly updated the rendering system. Can't find it.. Any help?

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Then you add in the MP fairness argument - if people could use sliders, some would be able to see further than others.

 

Why should this be a problem? Im sure that drawdistance could be a server option so i really dont care about that one.

 

 

 

So my take on it is that the restriction is not a technical limit, but a developer decision on what performance trade off they want - because if they have a high draw distance the people who cannot get decent performance using it will complain loudly in Steam reviews and so on, and the MP crowd will complain that it is not fair.

 

In my eyes it still is a engine limitation when the performance decreases so drastically that most people could not play the game with good enough framerates. Who cares what people on steam say about IL2s performance when they are to stupid to correctly setup the graphic options? I understand that bad reviews could generate lesser sales but lets be honest, most flightsimmers use dedicated flighsim websites for reviews about flightsims. And if i remember correctly, steam users already gave bad reputation. Things like low render distance and jokingly bad AI are far more problematic than a few guys complaining about bad performance because they have shitty PCs or are to stupid to make the correct adjustments in the options menu. These kind of people should not be allowed to have a PC, thats what consoles are for where everybody gets the same performance, good or bad. This is the beauty about PC gaming, to have options and fast evolutions on hardware and what is possible. Options is the keyword here, this game lacks options, let it be graphic presets or difficulty levels in campaign.

 

In my opinion, the next big steps for IL2 after BoK should be render distances and AI improvements. What i really mean with AI improvements is a complete overhaul of the AI with proper detection and view restriction and more human like reactions like running away and stuff like using the strength of there planes. Is this asking to much, i dont think so but what do i know! My money is already paid so what could i do more for them?

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The comment in bold is the kind of thing that makes the developers' job so much harder. 

 

IMHO you could not be more wrong. First, it's a flight simulator, so everyone must have the same render distance. You could have slides for ground terrain and even objects, but not for aircraft. And if you do slides for aircraft, people start to complain about biased settings. You will understand if you read the whole thread. And I don't consider it fair either. Rendering distance is a huge problem and they should address it equally for everyone regarding aircraft. I don't see it as a big deal. Other sims have addressed it, why they couldn't?

 

Second, my CPU is not even being pushed in BOX. I think even a modern Pentium would be able to run BOX just fine. In that sense, ROF requires a lot more of my CPU than BOX (I tested it, and the usage is much higher). The competition sim also seems to have a fixed distance for aircraft and the CPU is also almost not required. In recent updates their GPU is also working much less.

 

If they cannot do this because the netcode is single threaded, then redo the netcode. After all, we are in 2017, right? After all these years they could have done it. If you don't plan for these things on the long run, it will come a day that you have no alternatives but to die in the market.

 

if this means the netcode has to be revised, then I can only urge that it gets revised. 

 

I totally agree.

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IMHO you could not be more wrong. First, it's a flight simulator, so everyone must have the same render distance. 

 

Complete fallacy promulgated largely by MP-focused people, disregarding the vast majority of SP players.  Maybe everyone in MP must have the same render distance to avoid the type of complaints you mention, but there's absolutely no reason why every SP player must have the same render distance regardless of the power of the PC they are willing to throw at it.  The vast majority of SP players should not have to be held hostage by the MP minority.  It's fine if they want to lock things for MP (or make it optional by server operators), but that should not be used as an argument for denying much needed functionality for SP players.  If this game engine is capable of generating greater render distances, they really need to make it happen as part of the move to the PTO if not before.  If it's not capable of doing this, then I shudder to think of the bad PR that will result when they release BoMidway.

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Complete fallacy promulgated largely by MP-focused people, disregarding the vast majority of SP players.  Maybe everyone in MP must have the same render distance to avoid the type of complaints you mention, but there's absolutely no reason why every SP player must have the same render distance regardless of the power of the PC they are willing to throw at it.  The vast majority of SP players should not have to be held hostage by the MP minority.  It's fine if they want to lock things for MP (or make it optional by server operators), but that should not be used as an argument for denying much needed functionality for SP players.  If this game engine is capable of generating greater render distances, they really need to make it happen as part of the move to the PTO if not before.  If it's not capable of doing this, then I shudder to think of the bad PR that will result when they release BoMidway.

 

I couldnt agree more, i share your opinion!

 

I really dont care about the few MP guys online experience. The focus seems to be completely on the MP side while most people dont use MP. Maybe this will change with true Coop modes but i dont understand why true coop is so much ignored since the beginning by the devs. Instead we got horrible SP and exciting MP PvP. Dont get me wrong, i like the video content from a few MP guys but its just not fair that only them have a really nice game while i pay the same price for just a good FM. :(

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IMHO you could not be more wrong. First, it's a flight simulator, so everyone must have the same render distance. You could have slides for ground terrain and even objects, but not for aircraft. And if you do slides for aircraft, people start to complain about biased settings. You will understand if you read the whole thread. And I don't consider it fair either. Rendering distance is a huge problem and they should address it equally for everyone regarding aircraft. I don't see it as a big deal. Other sims have addressed it, why they couldn't?

 

snip

 

RoF - which you also have played, has object sliders that also work for aircraft. Was RoF a flight simulator?  Of course. You are confusing the term "flight simulator" with the term "multi-play game that is completely fair for everyone except those who have better HOTAS, screens, and vision tracking hardware". This argument is utter nonsense.

 

As for people complaining about "biased settings" I could not give a flying hippo, since I am not interested in MP or your opinions of it. Let them complain - if they are not complaining about this you can be sure they will be complaining about something else.  As for reading the thread so that I would "understand" - this topic has been raised over and over again through the years, I have not only read the thread but participated in it. 

 

Frankly I have had it up to here with MPlayers telling the rest of us - the majority, BTW - what we can and cannot have in SP. 

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Making the game less eye candy can help spotting contacts - it's fact that sharp objects are better visible on blurred less futures landscape ground textures. Same with no anty aliasing where waggling and flickering lines are pick up faster by human eyes. Lower setting more fps = better game responsiveness, no post effects less obstructed vision etc. Those arguments for MP fairness are viable to some degree and option.

Bigger view distant is needed for better situation awareness for all, and drawing even 4 time more low polygon objects (level of detail distant objects) will definitely not dry today's gfx cards fill rate. This common sense argument apparently is not true because how this game mechanics works. I think that today's draw distance is enough for slow speed WW1 era aeroplanes but there times faster and higher flying planes of WW2 era need it grow up to at last double radius. Pacific theater and high altitude booming, new spotting future will benefit for this for sure. Looking at how this game progressed from ROF engine I believe this constraint will be lifted up in near future because is important.

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As a Ground Pounder I propose an Aircraft Viewrange of 2km and a Building View Range of 30km.

 

Klaus is making the point, in his dry Germanic way, that the best way to spend your PC's limited budget on draw distance for various types of objects, depends entirely on what you want to do in the game.  Which is not the same for everyone.

 

I feel I have to spell this out since it seems to be a difficult concept for some of our brethren to grasp.

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Ah I should have known, that one flew right over my head. Point taken though, sliders (at the least in SP) is a necessity.

 

Sorry, I should have been clearer - I know you are on the same wavelength, maybe just missed Klaus' way of expressing it.   I did not mean that you found it a difficult concept!   It is the "must be same for everyone" brigade that get up my nose, particularly since what they mean is "must be the same as me". 

Edited by unreasonable

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Instead of merely adding in options for single player they should implement a system that works for both multi and single player and is optimized to work fast.

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Instead of merely adding in options for single player they should implement a system that works for both multi and single player and is optimized to work fast.

 

And as long as this is impossible, give us SP guys a damn slider to choose how much performance we want to sacrifice for longer viewranges. ;)

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