Okay, I've got the new algorithm core installed and working. Today, I have to add yet another impostor layer, this one for mid-range impostors. These are basically the "asterisks" that I had talked about earlier.
Anyhow, I think I can at least partly use some of the previous code I had, and generally speaking this oughtn't be too hard to implement. Asterisks will fade 1-1 to real tree models, so the idea is, hopefully I can have a very tight circle around the player of real trees, and then a much wider one of asterisks, resulting in a much denser and more continuous feel.
In other news! Last night I really did something kind of radical. I was just sort of feeling that the sense of "scale" was a bit off. So what I tried, was making the ship (a lot) bigger. It's quite a different feel now, but it's one that I like and I think it coincides closer I think to what you sense when you look out.
Sense of scale in games is always hard. You almost always want the world quite a bit bigger than realistic; if you really look at most games you will find this is the case (e.g., kart racers, flying/shooting games, what have you). But you also don't want things to look HUGE close up. What I have now, I think, is a good comprimise. I think I may make the ship just a little bit smaller.
Anyhow, I was able to do this for a good reason. Basically, now that you can see millions of trees as far as the eye can see (well I am maybe exagerrating a bit), you get a MUCH better sense of how big hills really are, and actually they seem quite bigger. So anyhow, when those trees fade into real trees, if it happens in a way that the scale of the trees seems somewhat realistic, then what happens is that the trees were HUGE in comparison to the ship. What this tells me is that: even when the hills are made to look larger by the trees, the ship is STILL too small. This is what finally prompted me to make the ship so much larger. Anyhow, it will still suffer a few tweaks. I wonder if the next demo will use the autogen ships. I also wonder, if the autogen ships need to have such an increase in size as well (I think they probably do)
Well, here's to a productive day!
Also, Yoshitaka Azuma is really really talented.