FSXA M Graham Clark Downtown Airport (KPLK)

#22
Looks great Barry! Are you creating your ground polys with ADEx and MCX?
Thanks! I am using ADE GPeditor for some of the ground markings (parking T's, hold short marks), but most of the GP work is with Gmax and MCX Ground Poly Wizard.

For the FSX material layer I sliced up my Gmax ground poly and used MCX to correct for earth curvature and also for object placement so it matches up to the FS2002 ground poly. It has multiple LODs so that it lifts up higher off the surface as viewing distance increases.
 
#23
Cool. I want to start experimenting with adding specular and bumps with ADEx GP, but have absolutely no idea how to apply material settings (P3D) to add reflection. I assume similar as to adding adding reflective textures with MCX (using alpha to set reflective level??). Tool is there but a tutorial would be nice!
 

dave hoeffgen

Resource contributor
#24
I want to start experimenting with adding specular and bumps with ADEx GP, but have absolutely no idea how to apply material settings (P3D) to add reflection
No idea may be because it can't be done to an FS2002 ground poly.
You need to make a custom FSX model overlaying the ground polygon as @bdf369 explained above.
 
#26
No idea may be because it can't be done to an FS2002 ground poly.
You need to make a custom FSX model overlaying the ground polygon as @bdf369 explained above.
Correct, but ADEx now actually creates P3D specific polygons, departing from the previous FS2002 methodology. For that it uses a new feature called material settings (similar to MCX).
 
#27

dave hoeffgen

Resource contributor
#28
#29
Correct, but ADEx now actually creates P3D specific polygons, departing from the previous FS2002 methodology. For that it uses a new feature called material settings (similar to MCX).
That's neat, but then you shouldn't need the extra "invisible" material layer like I need to do with FSX over the FS2002 ground poly, with P3D you can use material settings directly in your ground poly. I don't have P3D but that's my understanding.

For rain and specular as shown I use around 50% alpha for the diffuse map with material setting like this:

Specular color: 64,64,64
Specular level: 24
Blend environment by inverse of diffuse alpha: True
Use global environment map as reflection: True (or you can make your own environment map and assign to the correct slot)
Reflection scale: 100 (adjust to your liking)
Precipitation, take into account: True (set an offset to delay the effect if you like)

Create a bump map texture. A simple way is make a medium gray texture, apply a small amount Gaussian noise, and then filter it into a normal map (I use the xNormal plugin Height2Normal), then save and use MCX texture converter to turn into an FSX bump map. Assign the bump texture in the materials Bump map slot.

For FSX to make this material transparent except for the above effects I just make the diffuse color black (0,0,0) and set blend to Source: SrcColor, Destination: One.

For FSX, LODs are needed to raise the poly as distance increases. I don't think you need to make LODs in P3D though, it uses some other method to prevent flicker.
 
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#30
I guess the question was about the terrain elevation mesh, @Diverskii tell me if I'm wrong.
And I'm curious about that too :)
Oh sorry. I made a custom elevation mesh using elevation data from USGS, then I just make flatten polygons in ADE to smooth the transition from the flat airport surface down to the ground.

I still have a TODO to fiddle some more with the mesh, as it is now I get flying buildings when I fly to KPLK from another airport. I'm guessing I need to adjust the LOD setting in the .inf file.
 

dave hoeffgen

Resource contributor
#31
For FSX, LODs are needed to raise the poly as distance increases. I don't think you need to make LODs in P3D though, it uses some other method to prevent flicker.
Was the flickering that much of an issue? I tried the invisible specular overlay aswell but in my case I used SODE for placement and it didn't flicker, so LODs weren't needed.

I think it's due to the fact that in case of a simObject the sim does a more precise Z-sorting
 
#32
Was the flickering that much of an issue? I tried the invisible specular overlay aswell but in my case I used SODE for placement and it didn't flicker, so LODs weren't needed
I did notice some flicker at a distance but none close up. For close up you only need raise 1cm or less but then I gradually raise to 10cm at very low LOD.

I plan to start learning about SODE but decided to skip it for this project. I think it also has a feature to lift up the FSX poly at distance. That's interesting about the Z-sorting having more precision with simobjects.
 
#33
Thank you. The ground poly has an edge texture with shading to make it appear raised, then I use alpha channel to gradually fade the edge to transparent.

This method is covered in detail in part 2 of Jtanabodee's tutorial: http://www.fsdeveloper.com/wiki/index.php?title=Ground_Poly_Tutorial_for_the_year_2014+
I did mean the mesh, sorry for the confusion. But now that you mention it your apron edges are very nice too ;)

Oh sorry. I made a custom elevation mesh using elevation data from USGS, then I just make flatten polygons in ADE to smooth the transition from the flat airport surface down to the ground.

I still have a TODO to fiddle some more with the mesh, as it is now I get flying buildings when I fly to KPLK from another airport. I'm guessing I need to adjust the LOD setting in the .inf file.
How many flattens in ADE did this require? I take it to get something smooth like that you're placing quite a few, each dropped by a few feet?
 

dave hoeffgen

Resource contributor
#34
I think it also has a feature to lift up the FSX poly at distance.
Indeed, it's called "ground polygon shift" but I got the feeling that this is almost unnecessary.

That's interesting about the Z-sorting having more precision with simobjects.
I noticed that because of some excessive Z-fighting on our tower and when it was placed with SODE the flickering was gone.
 
#35
How many flattens in ADE did this require? I take it to get something smooth like that you're placing quite a few, each dropped by a few feet?
No I think it's better I think to not make too many polygons or you can get a mess. I make sloping polygons like described in this tutorial:
http://scruffyduck.screenstepslive....8-how-do-i-create-a-sloped-background-polygon

There's also a section in the ADE manual to make Sloping Polygons

ADE can connect to FSX and read the ground height into the point height dialog by pressing the Set Altitude to FS button. In FSX put the aircraft in Slew mode, then in ADE right-click to place the aircraft over a point in the flatten poly, then double click the point to edit height and click the Set Altitude to FS button.



I use the flattens for the nearby highway as well that is covered by the photoscenery (still need some color correction):

 
#37
That's neat, but then you shouldn't need the extra "invisible" material layer like I need to do with FSX over the FS2002 ground poly, with P3D you can use material settings directly in your ground poly. I don't have P3D but that's my understanding.

For rain and specular as shown I use around 50% alpha for the diffuse map with material setting like this:

Specular color: 64,64,64
Specular level: 24
Blend environment by inverse of diffuse alpha: True
Use global environment map as reflection: True (or you can make your own environment map and assign to the correct slot)
Reflection scale: 100 (adjust to your liking)
Precipitation, take into account: True (set an offset to delay the effect if you like)

Create a bump map texture. A simple way is make a medium gray texture, apply a small amount Gaussian noise, and then filter it into a normal map (I use the xNormal plugin Height2Normal), then save and use MCX texture converter to turn into an FSX bump map. Assign the bump texture in the materials Bump map slot.

For FSX to make this material transparent except for the above effects I just make the diffuse color black (0,0,0) and set blend to Source: SrcColor, Destination: One.

For FSX, LODs are needed to raise the poly as distance increases. I don't think you need to make LODs in P3D though, it uses some other method to prevent flicker.
bingo, thank you so much I will try those!

David
 
#38
Barry, FYI, tried your settings with some minor tweaks and was able to create P3DV3.3 polygons with rain and reflective effects. I will eventually create a tutorial for those interested under the ADE forum. Many thanks for sharing your settings, otherwise I would not know where to start!
 
#39
Barry, FYI, tried your settings with some minor tweaks and was able to create P3DV3.3 polygons with rain and reflective effects. I will eventually create a tutorial for those interested under the ADE forum. Many thanks for sharing your settings, otherwise I would not know where to start!
Good stuff David, glad to hear the info was helpful. :)
 
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