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Chunk3ym4n

Grass layer not the best solution?

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I thought that having a grass layer would be a wonderful idea but after seeing it in action i'm still worried that AI and players will have an unfair advantage with it. Considering how the grass layer works, if you go prone the grass can almost completely conceal you and even completely conceal you if you are at the right angle. I think this is unfair since once someone goes prone at about 200m away they can instantly disappear even though if they rendered the grass at that area it would be easy to see the soldier prone in the grass. One easy solution is to make the player slightly transparent but that would look too awkward. Another one would be to automatically add some "grass" camo if you are at a distance as well on the player so it looks like the unit at the distance is blended in with the enviroment. There isn't a perfect solution out there and I can understand why we have a grass layer but it in my opinion is not the best solution.

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Probably not the "best" solution, but I can live with it. You *would* be completely concealed by grass in some places, unless you have some elevated vantage point, making you look down on the grass. But those are hard to come by, especially in the Chernarus landscape.

Suggestion, if you suspect that someone is hiding in the grass in a way that you can't see him, force him to move. Suppress the area, use an Mk19 if need be. Hell, drop an arty round if he is making your life miserable. Snipers tend to do that. Make them learn the value of relocation :)

Meaning, it could have been visually better, but I don't think it gives any unrealistic advantages in a way that can't be tackled. So, I'm very happy with how it plays out, and waaaay better than no grass layer.

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Grass isn't the *best* solution but it's the most practical. Until PC's are powerful enough to render grass all over the whole island this will have to do.

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It IS a good idea. Without it its just like all the other games with nothing out there. Just flat ground where you see everyone.

It isnt best - but its definatelly good.

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Its defiantly good

it makes the game a little harder, maybe, but for me, it also adds that little touch of realism, which makes this game stand out from all the others:-)

just my 2ct

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I have a question, as I'm fairly new to the Arma-series, and therefore (not yet) participating in beta-testing.

How does this new grass-layer work?

I remember a game called Joint Operations, where a prone player would vanish (blend-in) in the ground, sortof, when seen in the grass from a distance.

He would only become partially visible again, when he either moved, or used a weapon.

Like that?

If that's the case, then it would be a tremendous improvement, imo.

Is there maybe a YouTube vid somewhere, showcasing the new effect?

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In my opinion what was done, is not enough. I understand its hard to do what was meant and promised from the start, but i would radder wish if BIS spend some time on the clutter issue instead of leaving the grass layer the way it is.

Please don't give up in fixing the clutter models in order to hide humans in the grass / tall grass (wheat) from AI eyes.

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@Paajtor: If you're new to Arma2, you should have a look at http://ttp2.dslyecxi.com/. Hmm, oddly it doesn't describe the grass layer effect in version 2, so search for "grass" in this Arma1 version of the document instead. It shows you how pretty much how the "grass layer" effect works.

Btw, it's not a "must read" as such. Nobody will demand that you know all that stuff. But it's a good read nonetheless, and highly recommended especially if you want to team up with somebody. Nice to know that you know what you're doing, kinda.

It doesn't matter if you "beta test" or not. The beta version is available to everyone. I sure don't consider myself one. I try my gameplay, which is mostly as infantry. That means I'll rarely find anything vehicle related. The reason it's public beta, is that it install itself in a mod folder. That way, if any serious problems arise, you can disable it and simply play the official patch. A full new version will overwrite all the original stuff, so it better work.

Edited by CarlGustaffa

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CarlGustaffa, I know about that awesome guide...but thx, anyway :)

I did a search in the Arma1 stuff as you adviced, but couldn't find what I wanted to know (hence my request for a YT vid), sry.

But I can try to describe how it worked in Joint Operations:

Suppose you seen an enemy-sniper running through the grass down a slope, far off in the distance, at let's say 500m.

At that distance - at least in Joint Operations at that time - grass wasn't rendered anymore, for fps-sake obviously.

So what you would see happening, when the sniper went prone, was as if the texture of that slope simply would close over him, like a blanket.

If you would use a good binocs, you could barely see his rifle, and a slight misforming of the terrain, that's all.....IF you knew he would be there.

Otherwise, you would oversee the target.

Once he moved a little, or fire his weapon, you could see him a bit better, just for a few secs.

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Could it be the case, that because ArmaII has some form of deformable terrain ("bombcrater", stuff like that), it's hard to make the AI clear, that grass has disappeared on that spot?

In general, it seems fairly easy to me, to tell the AI by means of a trigger: [if] player goes prone in grass[then]grass-layer is ON.

But if a random shell creates a naked surface, this could make things much more complicated.

Or not?

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Not exactly...the grass layer should always be on...if grass is not rendered in distance, well, it's still there, basically. So feet/boots are not shown, for example, or if you kneel, the leg/knee is not visible then...etc., but it should never be off.

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It IS a good idea. Without it its just like all the other games with nothing out there. Just flat ground where you see everyone.

It isnt best - but its definatelly good.

Novalogic used it in BHD and Joint Operations.

Without any other solutions this will do just fine.

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If your not "into the betas", then just get into it...

The beta is installed by itself as an addon. So you have the standard ARMA2 start icon plus the ARMA2BETA start icon. Nothing gets mixed up or destroyed. Asking how the beta works when you have it downloaded, installed and played within seconds is a bit weird to me.

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If your not "into the betas", then just get into it...

Asking how the beta works when you have it downloaded, installed and played within seconds is a bit weird to me.

Alex72, was that a respons to my posts?

Sorry, I'm confused.:o

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My only problem with the grasslayer atm is in multiplayer. If i use the patch and others don´t they have a big advantage. In my last games i was often not able to see the enemy.

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It seems to me a better solution (or an additional solution) would be to make the terrain texture more "busy", particularly when you're zoomed in on it. That way the texture used on character models would be less visible. I don't know if this is feasible or not, but to me the ground texture when zoomed in or looking through a scope looks very sharp which gives me the impression that the resolution is high enough to be able to add more detail to it.

The alternative would be to have a simpler texture for characters which is shown when they're at a long distance, so they better match the simpler/flatter terrain texture.

To me, the "sink into the ground" method is better than nothing but it's still very easy to spot enemies through binocs/scope, because the detailed models and textures really stand out against the simple ground texture. Reducing the contrast would help a lot.

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Joint Operations way seems to me as the best. BIS should take a look on it.

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What is the status of the grasslayer, anyways? Has BIS commented on it? Are there mods implementing it?

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What is the status of the grasslayer, anyways? Has BIS commented on it? Are there mods implementing it?

It's in the beta patch for a long time.

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It's in the beta patch for a long time.

Weird, it's not working for me, and I just downloaded the latest beta.

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My only problem with the grasslayer atm is in multiplayer. If i use the patch and others don´t they have a big advantage. In my last games i was often not able to see the enemy.

Just stick to official 1.04 or use build 59210 of the beta patches while playing P vs P on-line if you are concerned about being at some disadvantage due to this. When 1.05 final is released this will be a none issue.

I think the grass layer needs to be "observed" by the AI - or properly observed rather. Right now I have the feeling that the AI does ignore the grass layer, or, it just sees any head sticking out equally well as the body wholly exposed.

http://dev-heaven.net/issues/show/5785

After testing build 60091 for a couple of hours yesterday I can say the "grass layer" is indeed affecting the AI. Now snipers in ghillie suits + tall grass starts to make sense, if you stay prone in tall grass at ~250+ m distance they will have very hard time locating you even if you shot at them. I'm sure it may still need some tweaking to some of the CFG-values to be perfected but it sure is a nice step forward IMHO!

It may not be the "perfect grass solution" but it sure beats what we had before in ArmA II 1.00 - 1.04. And the "perfect grass solution" would probably be to resource hungry anyway...

Another thing, now it's not really a "grass layer" as in ArmA I. Instead the soldiers smoothly "sinks" into the ground if hiding in grass. The benefit of this approach is that the nice looking ground textures isn't "degraded" as they where in ArmA I and you can't notice any "grass layer sheet" floating 20 cm in the air while looking thru scope as you could in ArmA I and I like current approach better.

/KC

Edited by KeyCat

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After testing build 60091 for a couple of hours yesterday I can say the "grass layer" is indeed affecting the AI. Now snipers in ghillie suits + tall grass starts to make sense, if you stay prone in tall grass at ~250+ m distance they will have very hard time locating you even if you shot at them.

/KC

Really? That's great, because before the AI would always pinpoint your exact location after two successive shots.

I need to go test this.

Edit: I downloaded the latest patch last night and there is no evidence of any grass layer. I've tested it with friends and enemies, always prone, in areas where the grass should cover at least half of their body. Nothing.

Edited by maturin

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