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Lost Dragons - Total Modification Alpha

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Got the new version of the WK-209 walker UV-mapped and threw some colors on it and since it looked pretty neat, I wanted to show it to you guys! 360 render seemed appropriate method to do that. :D 

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Another small upgrade to the WK-209 design. The smoke and countermeasure launchers have been replaced with more fitting desings.

Also down scaled the smoke grenade tube diameter from 100mm to 60mm as it had scaled up big time at some point.



WK-209_V4_2_Camo_Test_X.png

Enjoy!
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Hadn't checked this thread for a while, but holy cow! Great progress being made here :D Especially the walker looks stunning!

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Hadn't checked this thread for a while, but holy cow! Great progress being made here :D Especially the walker looks stunning!

Haha! Progress is steadyish.

Heres WK-209 in engine!

WK-209_V4_In_Buldozer.png

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Got almost all moving parts set up for the new torso design and thought to share the progress with you guys! 
 
The red lines are there to check how well the gun zeroing works and how far it converges. Testing showed that with current setup the guns can converge beyond 1500 meters but I was not able to see further in the Buldozer model viewer. Have to continue testing that in game.
 
Anyway, here's also demonstration how the guns move about and how much their reach is. I'm quite content with how it works now and will take this version in game and lock it for next Alpha. Further design changes may come if deemed necessary.

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Actually figured out how to align the gun zeroing better even with the limited visibility of buldozer and set the max convergence range to 8000 meters. :D

Zeroing will now be between 100m and 8000m.

Fun fact, the guns only need tot rotate ~2degrees to converge from 100 to 8000 meters.

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WK-209 V4 made it in game! Wohoo! All previous functionality works like a charm and I can start tackling the new improvements tomorrow.

 

The zeroing unfortunately did not work off the shelve, but I already have a few different approaches in mind on how to make it work and hopefully automatic (and optionally manual). Gotta work on the cannons too at some point to give them proper muzzle velocity for gauss cannons and better firing effects. Got some cool stuff coming up with this one! (not that this isnt quite cool already ;D)
 

20160324012748_1.jpg

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I understand the WK-209 V4 will be a robot, but what about a version that could be piloted by a human?

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I understand the WK-209 V4 will be a robot, but what about a version that could be piloted by a human?

Oh it is actually a 3 men crewed vehicle! Driver/Pilot controls the moving via remote controlling the "ManLegs" and gunner operates the arm guns and commander the nose minigun and the missiles!

AI operations with the walker are untested and at this point probably not working since the legs are stripped of AI moves and that might hinder the AI remote control too.

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Sneakpeek of the boresighted 3D crosshairs. They are aligned with the individual barrels and raytrace surfaces up to 5000m giving quite accurate indication where youre shooting at. 
 
Also the barrels now converge with the range and the all shots are aligned with their barrels so the setup is pretty awesome already. 
 
In the future we might add predictive ballistic calculation to the crosshair position, but for now we're happy with the implementation we have.
 
I'll be posting a video of these new features soon so stay tuned!
 
 
20160407011429_1.jpg
 
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Greetings!
 
This time I would like to present you with our latest achievement, the walker arm weapon automatic convergence system with live surface following crosshairs for each barrel. (It will be applied to other vehicles too when needed.)
 
The arms align the guns on vertical axis and the guns themselves have small horizontal axis correction that brings them to point into the aiming direction and zeroed to correct range
 
We have also updated the multi turret function that previously placed the shots to fire from different barrels to also take accord the direction of the barrel so that the shots fire properly in the direction of the barrel. This way we can have exact control of the aim.
 
As a bonus the missiles from fired by the commander now arch much better to their targets as they fly out of their tubes in the directon the tubes are pointing and fire up their engines only a couple of seconds later. This will also help with the development other weapon systems.
 
Some finetuning may still be needed and we are looking into predictive ballistic calculations to make our vehicles even more efficient.
 
Stay tuned for more!

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Looks fantastic. Can the ai use the Mech effectively?

Thank you! And unfortunately currently no, the walkers are not quite AI compatible. The legs are in all ways still unarmed men and behave like them, so if under fire and by themselves, they are likely to just turn and run away. They will need their own behavior FSMs and/or scripted behavior coordination before the walkers are properly AI capable.  

AI in the torso fires weapons alright, though the gun alignment still needs to be refined so that it works with AI too. The new system still relies on player sitting on the gunner seat for everything to work alright, but we will get the AI to work eventually.

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Tried out some ideas for the WK-209 optics. The lines could maybe be a little thinner, don't want overdo it.

 

Also need to figure out just what info we want there to be. Range, elevation, azimuth, ambient temperature, radar/sensors, damage, weapons,speed etc etc.

20160411054659_1.jpg

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Greetings! 

Modding time has been sparse due to increase in workload (though this means money to pay the bills etc etc) but nevertheless visioning new stuff never ceases!

I've been following this Dev topic for a while : Targeting improvements and there are awesome features coming that will benefit our mod greatly! While ago I showed you our proof of concept for multi-barrel reticles and talked about the possibility of adding predictive ballistic calculations for them and now Bohemia is adding just that as a general weapon feature!! Im personally very excited about it and it will hopefully save us a lot of trouble making our own predictive script and it will most likely save a lot performance wise too! There are lots of targeting improvements as well that Im sure we can find use for, so its all pure gold.

Now what I've gathered is that with the new features we can have engine powered, ballistic predictive aiming reticles shared between all gunners and commander and this has led me to develop our walking weapons platforms further so that each barrel of the arm mounted weapons are actually AI operated turrets with small corrective movement range. The barrels will then be aimed at their intended target by the "main gunner" of the walker who operates the arms and thus aims the guns in the direction of the target, the gun AIs are then forced to fire via script either by player pressing fire key or by their own programming.

This enables us to

A] have simple control mechanic over which barrel(s) fire
B] group said barrels to customizable firegroups that can be fired via different keys (groupings by left/right side, weapon type, etc..)

C] Autofire mechanism where the gunner just points at the target and AI shoots on its own

All this also means that we will have much easier work to implement single seat walkers where the player handles the moving and targeting and AI handles the aiming and even firing if set to automatic mode.

We strongly believe that this kind of advanced computer assist system will make walkers really worthy combat vehicles and very unique playing experience!

I've already set up pretty strong proof of concept of the AI barrel turrets built on the WK-209 combat walker seen on our latest videos and I am very excited about the prospects of this new method. There are however bunch of kinks still to be ironed out, like how to make the AI fire on its own, since AI seems to have trouble operating cannon type weapons on its own and currently the convergence relies on how far player is looking at to calculate the convergence angle. So theres still lots to do and also might take some time before the new targeting features hit the release build.

It kinda seems that we've been working on the walker tech for a while now and I must admit it has been fun and interesting work, but I would also like to assure you guys that the walkers are just one feature we have planned! 

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Greetings!
 

Been a while since I've last posted anything, but had a little spare time to start updating the map config for the new A3 1.6 lighting engine update.
 

Here is a shot from nice morning stroll in the jungle.
 

Got a basic lighting setup in order, though it will need a lot of tweaking to make it believable. The green tint is intentional since the planet is not earth and I wanted to play with the "alien world" concept. Also darkened the plant and grass textures a bit and I think they look quite nice right now. Going to need more different plants though.

 

20160615232300_1.jpg
 

Hopefully you guys can still manage some more waiting! Progress has been quite slow with work taking so much of my time so cant make any promises when we get it out. Theres still some old items on the list and I also want to make the walkers better before they can be let loose.

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A few question for you all!

TLDR : background for the question..

Now that most of the different multiple weapon firecontrol system aspects have been concept proofed and we are continuing to piecing it together we got few questions for you all

As background for our concept, some you you might know the Mechwarrior game series and how they have handled use of different weapons with configurable firegroups that are binded on different keys. Since the system works very well we have placed our system on the same idea.

Now in order to use as much regular engine features as possible(since purely script based system to create the shots and manage the ammo etc would most likely to be more performance costing), the walkers have hidden dummy AI gunners for each weapon barrel that the main gunner commands to fire via fire keys. Pretty simple and engine features keep track of ammo and fire events as it normally would.

Addemdum:

One major use of the weapon grouping is to be able to not fire any barrel that has obscured line of fire, especially with the side mounted weapon systems where firing all barrels at a target around a corner might end up wasting half the shots on the cover (the crosshairs take account geometry and move accordingly so it is easy to see)

 

Currently Gunner handles the main direct fire weapon system, which in the walkers current configuration is the side cannons and the Commander handles the anti-personnel weapon and missiles. In this case the gunner would have most use of the weapon groups when they are configured to fire left and right side separately. The commander might use the system to use the missiles and machinegun simultaneously by having the missiles selected at all times and having the minigun on secondary fire key so that there would be no need to switch between them.

If there were no commander seat and gunner was the only weapon operator the system would allow use of all weapons simultaneously. and possibly against multiple targets at once.

 

On to the questions:

A]  If possible should we implement completely separate control scheme for the walkers/other vehicles that use the multiweapon fire control system and have multi and have other speacial features (evasive moves, countermeasure systems etc) overwriting the default controls for the vehicles in question.

addemdum: Evasive move could be something like a sidestep from the enemy line of fire or turning turning a more armored side at the incoming fire. For countermeasures there is a single key in Arma, but we would like to have multiple different countermeasure systems available, but not fired simultaneously

B]  How many different firegroups would you see as feasible for the engine?

C]  If we go for the control overwrite should we try to make it rebindable or go for static keybinds 

I know this might be hard to answer since none of you have seen or got to use the walkers in actual combat, and to be honest they are not yet operate as smoothly as we want them to so this is rather tricky question we ask ourselves too. 

Nevertheless I would like to throw the ball around a bit to pick your brain on the matter so we might find a good starting point for the walker/special vehicle controls.

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A] Evasive moves...no, Countermeasures...sure (smoke launchers as chaff/flare type countermeasures with more ammo) Would not do it like Mechwarrior with a single Mechwarrior. Always thought they should have been like a helicopter gunship with pilot/driver and gunner. Would try to keep it as close to what we are used to with an armored vehicle.

 

B] Would limit it to about 3-4 weapon groups. Anti-armor direct fire, Anti-personnel or secondary direct fire, Anti-air direct or guided, and Guided Weapons Anti-armor/Anti-personnel.

 

C] Rebindable.

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A] Evasive moves...no, Countermeasures...sure (smoke launchers as chaff/flare type countermeasures with more ammo) Would not do it like Mechwarrior with a single Mechwarrior. Always thought they should have been like a helicopter gunship with pilot/driver and gunner. Would try to keep it as close to what we are used to with an armored vehicle.

 

B] Would limit it to about 3-4 weapon groups. Anti-armor direct fire, Anti-personnel or secondary direct fire, Anti-air direct or guided, and Guided Weapons Anti-armor/Anti-personnel.

 

C] Rebindable.

Excellent input, thank you for that!

May I ask what comes in your mind with the term evasive moves and why would a walking machine not be able to for example try to duck or turn a more armored side at enemy fire? That said could you elaborate your opinion as this especially is something we would like to have as much input as possible. 

Our plan is to have the larger multi weapon platforms like the ones we have shown to be crewed with at least 2 person, sometimes with 3. Driver/Pilot, Gunner and the optional Commander. Smaller single seat platforms (armored suit types) with single heavy weapon system are also planned, but single seat concept is untested. 

Also I think I should have mentioned that one major use of the weapon grouping is to be able to not fire any barrel that has obscured line of fire, especially with the side mounted weapon systems where firing all barrels at a target around a corner might end up wasting half the shots on the cover (the crosshairs take account geometry and move accordingly so it is easy to see)

 

Currently Gunner handles the main direct fire weapon system, which in the walkers current configuration is the side cannons and the Commander handles the anti-personnel weapon and missiles. In this case the gunner would have most use of the weapon groups when they are configured to fire left and right side separately. The commander might use the system to use the missiles and machinegun simultaneously by having the missiles selected at all times and having the minigun on secondary fire key so that there would be no need to switch between them. 

 

If there were no commander seat and gunner was the only weapon operator the system would allow use of all weapons simultaneously. and possibly against multiple targets at once.

 

As a side note if someone is wondering, the walkers we have now are around 9 meters tall and compared to the single seat mechs in Mechwarrior, ours is around the size of the smallest light mech class of that universe.

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Evasive makes me think of things like dodging to the side and similar. At most I would allow it to shuffle step to the side. Now what I could definitely go for is a crouch or hull down mode with either no movement or very limited movement.

 

For the left and right side weapons the gunner has access to, maybe put one on primary fire and the other on secondary fire key (as described for the commander) so they can fire independently as the gunner chooses. Possibly a toggle key or separate fire mode to fire both simultaneously (similar to switching between single and ripple fire for rocket pods) or alternate like an X-Wing does from the wingtip laser cannons.

 

Mentioning Mechwarrior (BattleTech), always thought that would work nicely in Arma. With all the Mechs, Tanks, VTOLs, Aerospace, Battle Armor, and Standard Infantry pretty much everything is covered and more. Only problems really would be the Mechs as they are really big targets, 3-5 storeys tall or 9-15 meters. Which honestly is a little ridiculous. Always imagined the smallest was around 2 storeys and the biggest 3-4.

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Now what I could definitely go for is a crouch or hull down mode with either no movement or very limited movement.

I like the idea! Forcing mechs to stop for special actions or whatever would make for an interesting dynamic.

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Would dodging or ducking down on the run be such a bad thing though? I mean that something like that would be natural for any creature moving on legs and although such mechanics have not really been used in any game with huge mechs/robots does that mean that it shouldn't be a thing.

Battletech themed games have been successful in capturing the essence of huge walking warmachines and are excellent example of how such a game works, but in my opinion now that I look back at the games and compare them to the concept/boardgame art the mechs have always been rather cumbersome in comparison to some of the art where mechs do duel and dodge around each other and take advance of terrain far more than their game equivalent have ever been able do. In games they run into things and get stuck into rocks and walls and while it is partly because the how the game engines work I would think in the early games this is due the technology available for the games and in the later games its due to the developers just following the way it has always been done.

This observation has had a lot of impact in our walker concept and in exploring the agility/mobility of a walking combat vehicle. I would assume such a vehicle would be much steered by some sort of an "fly by wire" system where the AI running the machine operates the finer moves of the vehicle in accord of where the pilot steers the machine. I would not think a walking machine could even operate without such AI assistance. Now it is not our intention to make then "anime agile" with jumps and spinning and flying around (Hawken for example).  But to give them some more mobility than just a tank to make them feel like a viable option for combat use.




Related question


 

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I do not see anything dodging fast enough to avoid a missile, much less a ballistic round. If it is mobility you seek there are other options. One such is the rocket or jetpack assisted movement from Front Mission. Somebody has already done an addon that demonstrates this. Though I believe the legs are based off of a tracked vehicle's movement.

 

Wander Panzer (WAP) Mod for Arma 3

 

Also if the torso is able to rotate like a turret you can still pop out of cover from behind a hill/building, fire, and return to cover fairly quickly. Similar to a tank going hull down from a turret down defilade and back again. Only difference is you are doing it horizontal instead of vertical. That is also the reasoning behind having a crouch mode. You want to be exposed for as little time as possible. The Mechwarrior games and the circle of death is a video game concept that would not fly on an actual battlefield with guided munitions and targeting computers for ballistics. Says the guy commenting on a video game. :lol:

 

defilade.gif

 

Edit: To assist in this, could a camera be put on each arm? In the above picture the commander can still see as his optics are just above the edge of the fighting position (Dotted Line). This allows them to locate and select targets for the gunner to engage before even exposing themselves.

 

Was a tank crewman, then an engineer heavy equipment operator. ;)

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