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Hawkslayer

High Hover

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After a little experimenting, it seems that the hovercraft very closely interacts with the ground beneath it, causing the angles to be significant at a high NominalAltitude.

Adjusting the ThrusterSpacingX and Y values seems to give give it a better footing, but still responds oddly to things such as buildings that the vehicle easily can clear.

Ideally, it would be nice to have a "no collision buffer" where the vehicle flies flat and only really cares about the angles below it as it gets closer to impact. Perhaps having close proximity having a greater strength of influence than something farther away.

Unfortunately, it looks like any high-hover vehicles won't be possible for hilly terrain due to this, unless there is some core changes implemented to be more friendly to higher altitude hovering.

Assuming this one thing could be fixed, I think the unit I have started on in the Air Units topic would be workable, but it seems I may have to scratch the project and try to work on the Viper flight dynamics instead, which has it's own awkward behavior to it.

*sigh*

I did however get the Tempest to fly at 45 pretty well, and even at 145.. until I got off the flat terrain. Landing is a trick though, since it wants to tip because of the dropship that's quickly under it, but if you move forward it seems to level out.

Edit:

ooh! Setting thruster spacing x and y at 300, and flying at 300, if I could save the initial drop, I was able to fly around at that level and do fairly well without flipping over. I even got shot down by 20mm fire, lol..

[ December 11, 2006, 05:27 PM: Message edited by: Hawkslayer ]

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The HoverChassis is probably never going to work well for an air unit, not because it's badly designed but simply because it's the wrong tool for the job.

The HoverChassis models a set of 4 "jets" that interact with the terrain underneath the chassis. Think of fans creating thrust through ground-effect. As any one of the "fans" gets closer to the ground, it generates more upward thrust. So the whole basis of the HoverChassis is interaction with the terrain beneath - like a ship on water.

For an air unit, you would have to hover very high above the terrain. If you make the jets react with the ground at great distances then your chassis will become unstable. Imagine trying to balance on long columns on thrust that extend hundreds of meters down to the ground. It's very hard not to tip over. You could move the columns of thrust farther apart, which is what you did with the thruster spacing tags, but then you have columns of thrust that are hundreds of meters to either side of the chassis. This means they will interact with objects and terrain "out there" away from the chassis, leading to strange behavior.

So I think the only way to get good results with the creation of an air unit is to treat it as an air unit, not a hover unit. That means the AirshipChassis, of which the Viper is one example, is your best bet. I understand that you want an air unit that's easier to control and easier to fly NOE than the Viper. Now *this* is a deficiency of design - the Viper is simply too hard to control as it is now.

So for your new air unit, you should probably use the AirshipChassis (like the Viper), and lay out for us developers exactly what you would like to see fixed or added so that it is easier to control. This means that for a while you will be stuck with the code as-is while developing your new unit, but over time we should be able to implement code improvements based on your feedback that make your new unit behave the way you want it to.

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Ok Clay, I'll stop trying to pound a 120mm shell into a 20mm barrel ;) Maybe.. my last time of playing around with it wasn't all that bad.

The Viper isn't bad.. it's just sluggish. I'll play around with it and see if it's just the mass/settings, or the hardcoded stuff.

[ December 14, 2006, 05:18 PM: Message edited by: Hawkslayer ]

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I think seeing a control scheme simillar to the Banshee control scheme for Halo on PC would be nice. The dropship points where the mouse is, W goes forward, S slows down, and (as far as I remember) a and d have no effect.

In relation to the viper.. I'd like to see

W- Speed up

S- Slow down

A- Altitude up

D- Altitude down

The viper would point according to where the mouse is, but the only way to change elevation is with the a and d keys. (The viper points wherever the mouse is, but it doesn't follow that line vertically). That would allow creation of attack ships, and also lessen the amount of overturned vipers during lag spikes. Though, it does not follow the terrain, so you still need to steer around the mountains.

Of course, inertia would still be present, so it can't turn on a dime, but it would give it a more 'aircraft' like feel.

For those who say it's unrealistic.. well.. maybe realism needs to be sacrificed for playability here.

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I like your idea flight model Iceman, and I'd even settle with a more agile version of the Viper. The Viper just takes too long to turn and manuver, you really need to set up an approach to pick something up, where a hover-capable ship should really be extremely manuverable. If it would turn, thrust and decelerate like 4x the rate, it would take some practice and skill, but ultimately you could have very high response control of the vehicle, but right now it's really sluggish feeling.

I personally would like to see left-right strafing ability for anything not wheeled or tracked also. Both hovercraft and hovering aircraft. If it doesn't use plane physics to fly, I'd like full axis motion (up/down/left/right/forward/back)

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