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m0nkey

Snow effect - blizzard. Care to comment?

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I've read as pete says, particles are not in the equation. At least, they weren't. Now they could be, or maybe they aren't. Or should be? Here is why I am unsure

blockAIVisibility = true; //sets if particles are in the AI visibility tests (default true)

from

 

https://community.bistudio.com/wiki/Arma_3_Particle_Effects

 

Conveniently though, you can use the command setParticleClass to get the expanded parameters of a class of PE you declare to function similar to a script so that you can use scripting command on it? Or something like that.

 

I am an arma noob still. I think that applies to an addon, as the config.cpp file is needed for it to work I think. I have been looking for some tutorials on how to do this, but haven't found any. My thought was if all this is needed is an addon to make AI also be effected, then why not make an addon. Its easy enough to make an addon that you can program a mission to use if present.

 

If anyone knows how to make a config PE work, I would graciously accept any examples ;)

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My understanding is that for particles to affect AI it needs to be run on the machine that is handling the AI (so dedi server, HC, own PC in SP..).

Effects like snowstorm, sandstorm...etc usually are local to the player so AI, whatever you put in the particle parameters, will not be affected by it (except in SP).

It's easy to check: activate Zeus, take some altitude and notice how the effect is just around the player, not on the whole map.

 

It's the same issue with Blastcore vs vanilla smoke grenade. If you're using Blastcore but it's not running on the server, you'll see a big smoke where the AI will only be affected by a vanilla smoke.

 

As a consequence, for custom weather effect, only fog will impact the AI.

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I rewrote everything again. I tried to be tricksy and creative, and some of my ideas were accomplished, others not so much. I was trying to find an object I could size and place above the player (hidden) that particles would not pass through. No such luck. I tried some other ideas as well, to no avail.

 

I've got what I think is the best medium to heavy density snowfall I can make. When you create snow that is falling, if you use flurries you can probably drive a car and see it properly. If the area is widespread and more than just a few flurries, its infantry on foot only to keep the effect. Blowing snow is a different story.

 

Anyway, I have three videos. What I consider the best I can make of each type.

 

 

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These are my "best" because I changed how I was making them, and that led me to using significantly less particles for the same area, and gave me 5x the variability.

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Looking great.  ;)

 

 

You might have to add some cam effects such as the below:

tag_looping_camShake = {
{
	addCamShake [5, 0.5, 25];
​	sleep 1;
	[] spawn tag_looping_camShake;
};
[] spawn tag_looping_camShake;

Something like the below, but only the cam shake or fog distance:

 

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Lovely stuff in here. That blizzerd is just jummy. :lol:

 

...at some point BIS just gotta do an official snow thingy, and finally implement this stuff (temperature -> rain/snow; AI perception w.r.t. particles) for good.

Some shiny day. :rolleyes:

 

And yeah, these effects need way too much single particles to be effective, which can go south really fast if you also throw other smoke resources (fires, explosions, ...) in the mix. Seeing how particles get "cut off" due to reaching the limit can be rather immersion breaking, to say the least (pls don't try command view, bwaha). So... I don't know, but maybe a different/pimped particle system could help for such effects (maybe just using fewer, but larger particles, with better/carefully doctored textures?). The current one isn't the youngest (neither are the textures available; see over here, eh), and surely there must have been some (general) progress in this area of research, no? Maybe DX12 stuff could help too, at least with the number of particles?

 

Tweak on!

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Every single effect you posted so far looks awesome! I love it!

 

We are running at the moment a winter campaign and I would really want to use your script in this missions, no I need it! Will you publish it in the near future?

 

Would it be possible to have it ARES compatible so that ZEUS can set the snow effects live while running the mission? Best case would be if you have the snowstorm and than change the snow effect to medium setting it will transition over a short period of time to the new setting instead of just switching to it.

 

Great Job really!

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Yes, the ability to manage the transition would be great !

 

Start with a huge blizzard and no AI (because AI will not be impacted by the blizzard) then lower the snow down to a manageable level for humans and start the fight ! :) 

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Here is quite a treat :)

 

 

That, fellow gamers shows a fix for a pesky issue with particles. No longer can you outrun the effect because I now have better control over the effects positioning, or the players positioning within the effect, depending how you look at it.

 

It gives possibilities that were missing previously. At least for me. Maybe someone else has done this I have no idea. But tomorrow or the next day should see my complete rewrite (again) finished and hopefully what I have in mind is achieved.

 

Unless you've messed with particles a lot, this may not seem like a big deal. Essentially the direction of the particle effect vehicle is no longer tied to the orientation of the player vehicle!

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Looks great, nice work!

 

Speaking of AI visibility and other factors, shouldn't it be possible to add some fog into the simulation but remove its "presence on the screen"?

 

In other words, its effects on AI are calculated, but player(s) doesn't see the fog rendered on screen.

 

Hope you get the idea, it's hard to explain :)

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Looks great, nice work!

 

Speaking of AI visibility and other factors, shouldn't it be possible to add some fog into the simulation but remove its "presence on the screen"?

 

In other words, its effects on AI are calculated, but player(s) doesn't see the fog rendered on screen.

 

Hope you get the idea, it's hard to explain :)

Hmm. Interesting idea. I will see if I can use ppEffect to reduce what setFog does. That would be a neat way to impose a restriction to AI while players are in a blizzard.Other than that, I don't know how one would not see the fog really. Anyone else heard of this?

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Hmm. Interesting idea. I will see if I can use ppEffect to reduce what setFog does. That would be a neat way to impose a restriction to AI while players are in a blizzard.Other than that, I don't know how one would not see the fog really. Anyone else heard of this?

Never seen anyone do it with the fog, too. Of course, it'd be neat to have an additional param 'Render' (default: true) for the fog.

 

Will do some research on this tommorow's morning!

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Maybe a bit more intrusive, but you could also try to adjust spotTime/spotDistance skills.

Introduce some weatherVisibilityCoefficient, keep some initial base skills on units (setVariable), and iterate over all units (from time to time).

 

..then again, I'm not sure how good you can cripple the AI in this way.

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Okay, I revamped the whole thing again... a few times. 90% done with a script version. Fine tuning the effects now relating to how daylight (or lack of) and wind/fog/gusts might cause things to get wierd. Its an exercise in frustration for sure, as it can look awesome but really this is a limited way to do this. I keep finding pitfalls.

 

Regardless though, for your viewing pleasure here is my latest. This snowfall has been the most challenging to get heavy and consistent without the wind. Wind really helps. Problem is that for flurries you can use a few different particles that behave very much like snow.. because there are not many of them. Transition to a blizzard and there are completely different particles to use that whip by so fast you don't see really what the particle is. But a heavy snow in a very light wind, that gives you time to see what it is, and that is  problem to try and keep it realistic.

 

See what you think so far. My frames were 60ish the whole time. Haven't tried tweaking this effect yet, still trying to get it to work right in all circumstance. Only night-time light kills it I think. But that kills most all of them, so...youtube really doesn't do the effect any justice to be honest.. so take it with a few grains of salt lol

 

 

 

 

 

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Here is the final blizzard effect I think. It seems to be fine enough and dense enough to actually look like a blizzard (don't judge by youtube ;) ) while also does not completely saturate the particle count like other versions did. It also is not easy to "walk out of" although all particle effects can be in the right circumstance.

 

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Hi m0nkey,

 

Holy Moly!!!

What an outstanding and awesome look, but even more the immersive atmosphere...GREAT!

Thanks for your efforts and improvements. 

 

Greetings

McLupo

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Great work, man! Eagerly awaiting the release of the script as I'm myself too short on time to make my own VFX :(

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Well, here is what an hour or so, (erm, maybe just a wee bit more than that) can achieve. This is by far the best effect I've created concerning a blizzard. I've only a few small issues left to resolve, then we will see what everyone thinks if they want to give it a whirl :)

 

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