Trench Works Tile

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Trench Works Tile

This is an idea for dug-in, beneath the earth, trenches in ww2ol. Though I wouldn't know what the terrain folks are capable of at this point, the idea is based on the visible evidence of what the engine can currently handle. Of course my eyes might be lying, and my understanding of the terrain false, but its a neat idea, so what the heck.

Here's the big city RR line:


As you can see its beneath ground level, and relatively thin, kind of like a trench. You can place objects in the area:


I believe this is some kind of special tile, not sure, akin to the AF tile but with a sublevel deformation. You might be thinking that I'm going to suggest they thin the rail space up even more and make a specialty 'trench tile', but you'd be wrong! I'm going for something with greater potential for variety. This sublevel locale is shown to illustrate the game engines' current capabilities regarding below ground spaces. Which brings us here:


This is a river flowing between two city sections. As you can see the river lies, as it naturally ought, at a lower level than the city, and that an object, a bridge, fits the space very precisely. My suggestion is to create a tile with a low lying space, like the RR area, and, just as in the case of the above bridge, make terrain objects that fit the space precisely. 

A simple tile with a sublevel would be constructed as here:


Then a variety of objects of equal size that fit the space exactly would be created. For example, square objects that fit the space five deep, and ten broad, might be modeled:


The objects would be as such:


Their being square and having the same dimensions allows the objects to be arranged every which way, meaning the terrain folks could then produce this:


And this:


Or this:



The above are of course simplified, you'd want a kink here and there so an mg or strafing plane can't kill everyone all the way along the trench.

As you can see, rather than a tile that has a single standard trench akin to the RR line, we have a possible abundance of variety. It is akin to the cities - a novel tile, with numerous 'building' objects that can be arranged every which way. The terrain would probably need to be flat, as there might be seam issues at a slant, though the PPOs can be placed on an angle.

It doesn't stop there. Other dug in positions could eventually be modeled to the same specs, such as:

An atg scrape.
A massive scrape for the 88, artillery, or tanks, with camo netting.
An aaa pit.
Partially submerged pillboxes.

And with trees and grass and other such placed atop the tile, you might have a trench fronting a treeline interspersed with foxholes and atg scrapes, or a cornfield providing greater concealment for several aaa positions, or perhaps dug in positions among hedgerows.

But it still doesn't end there. A capture point object might be modeled (might have a radio), and perhaps a spawn point (might have a roof), if it were desired to make it a cappable position. Though I reckon spawning ought to be more limited than the depots.

Natural terrain features such as a fish pond, or ravine, might be possible:


As you can see, objects of different dimensional mutiples of the base object could be tailored to fit.

While the normal ground texture would be grass for the non-trench part, such a tile might also be placed in the woods using the forest floor texture.

And as the bridge referenced at post's beginning is a destroyable object, so these objects could possibly have destroyed states. Collapse of the walls perhaps, or at least deformation of the edges or blasting of any sandbags and such. The filler object could even have a cratered damage state when hit with large ordnance. If the crater is off center perhaps the damaged state could be oriented to reflect the quadrant of the object that was hit: 


And we ain't done yet. Just as the rivers and RR lines run and curve through the cities, (in Metz the RR even goes under ground):


So these tiles might similarly run on and curve as well.

Even further, the tiles might lie undeformed with engineers one day given the ability to choose the objects, just as they place PPOs. There would of course need to be checks to make sure the trenches have proper ends attached.

And maybe you could lay down a minefield object or 4, which might naturally have some kind of cratered damage state.

That then is my idea for digging in - a sublevel area akin to the big city RR tracks, with objects of equal dimensions that fit the space akin to the city bridges, and may be mixed and matched with great variety.

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I like this.

Question is if they working on, or evaluating a new terrain engine that can add this and much more in a better way?

Xoom, any input? Maybe even spill some beans on this? I mean, Unreal Engine 4 together with a new Terrain Engine with real world scale of say 1:10 would be the bomb. B)

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The roadmap says a couple related things - that they're nearing completion of the new terrain editor, which will help ease terrain dev, and this:

Upgrading our technology from within seems to be the most viable option at this stage for taking the game further graphically. We are evaluating any and all ways internally to upgrade our core technologies, and our team members at CRS are becoming more well versed / familiar with the code base. 

I guess they'll be working from within for at least awhile.



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Maybe I misunderstood, but Doc (or maybe Gophur?) explained many years ago that the custom city tiles in question don't have any content below zero height, and instead are built up from zero height. The surrounding terrain also is custom to gradually slope up to their "ground level", so that everything "below ground" is no lower than zero.

That wouldn't interfere with your concepts. It just would mean that the height math in the associated code is a little more complicated.

Note however that in Creator's terrain editor, the WWIIOL world was defined to be based on "tiles" that are 800 meters square. So, any system of modular terrain features that has dimensions smaller than that perhaps would be better described with some other term to avoid confusion.

That's my understanding from the outside, anyway. Merlin is authoritative.

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I recall that, nothing below zero.

Could call it a subtile or microtile, terrain feature is so vague.


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When I was participating in a test, I got to try out some stuff unavailable in the game server, (was able to hover over battlefield, and hover UNDER the battlefield).  There is nothing below the ground layer, and I mean nothing.  I am completely guessing here, as it is not my area, but I would imagine a whole other layer at minus 5 (or whatever) would have to be built, across the entire map.  I am not sure how feasible that is, and I say that as someone who thinks PPOs should be expanded upon, to include trench-lines, etc.  I would LOVE to see it happen, but again, I am not sure how feasible it is.



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