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Alpha975

Possible Naval Overhaul

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Hello everyone.

I've been playing 0ad for a while on and of and I'm enjoying it. I like the progress the game is making and I would like to give a little bit back to the community.

I was wondering if there was an update planned to the naval units ingame. Currently they look ok, but empty (nobody on deck etc.). Is it perhaps possible to increase the size of the ships ingame and at the same time put infantry units onboard the ships (similar to how it is done with walls) as an eye-candy? Or use this system where there are several 3D models for a unit to increase the variety of the ships? And could ramming be done?

In any case, I could take a shot at the 3D models/texturs of the ships, if that is ok. Perhaps as a teaser a slightly older model of mine:

post-20018-0-23172900-1433059650_thumb.jpost-20018-0-07101600-1433059652_thumb.jpost-20018-0-16434100-1433059655_thumb.jpost-20018-0-29406100-1433059659_thumb.j

(a roman monoreme as used in the battle of actium, no textures, around 5k polys)

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Making bigger ships will be hard, as it would also need bigger maps to work well (ships already get stuck very often). And bigger maps means heavier for the computer, so more lag (longer paths to search, more stuff to render, ...).

They indeed look a bit empty now, and it would probably be better to have units on board, but it won't work well with real units. Real units are scaled up to make them easily selectable between buildings and trees, so they are too big for ships. It would be better to make a model with a few (small) units that are animated and row.

Your model looks very nice though.

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Ok, that makes sense :D

Thanks ;)

Alright, I'll give tiny rowers a try. I'll probably also try to model ships from around the second punic war instead of the imperial age (the ships ingame look more similar to the ones used then).

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[...]

They indeed look a bit empty now, and it would probably be better to have units on board, but it won't work well with real units. Real units are scaled up to make them easily selectable between buildings and trees, so they are too big for ships. It would be better to make a model with a few (small) units that are animated and row.

[...]

Wouldn't it really look out of place when you combine large® / standard sized units with those tiny rowers?

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Hello everyone.

I've been playing 0ad for a while on and of and I'm enjoying it. I like the progress the game is making and I would like to give a little bit back to the community.

I was wondering if there was an update planned to the naval units ingame. Currently they look ok, but empty (nobody on deck etc.). Is it perhaps possible to increase the size of the ships ingame and at the same time put infantry units onboard the ships (similar to how it is done with walls) as an eye-candy? Or use this system where there are several 3D models for a unit to increase the variety of the ships? And could ramming be done?

In any case, I could take a shot at the 3D models/texturs of the ships, if that is ok. Perhaps as a teaser a slightly older model of mine:

attachicon.gif1.jpgattachicon.gif2.jpgattachicon.gif3.jpgattachicon.gif4.jpg

(a roman monoreme as used in the battle of actium, no textures, around 5k polys)

For now what we could use would be better destruction/death anims see → #2986

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Ok, I just checked ingame, and there would not a large scaleup of the ships necessary (perhaps 10% or so) to bring them to scale with infantry. So would you all enjoy a deck crew on the ships?

Hm, it's probably best if I just start modeling a type of ship that is not ingame yet, with different possibilites (same as the current ships / with crew) and a few animations that could be used ingame.

There is also the possibility to model the ships combat ready (currently they are all ingame with sails set etc., not how they would actually combat, but more visually appealing to the player). What are your thoughts on that? Should I built a test for both? Or an animation of a ships getting combat ready?

Is the target poly-count still around 2k for ships?

Edited by Alpha975

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You could go for → #2233 in this case to make an usable ship =)

Well, make the model as you want to see it =) That will probably get someone the will to fix the code for it to work =)

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I doubt that.

According to Wikipedia

The total complement (plērōma) of the ship was about 200.[34][35] These were divided into the 170 rowers (eretai), ...

So I think ships would need to be a lot bigger to fit 200 of our oversized units. If you'd try to fit a believable number of units on the ship, then the ship would be massive.

I still think that it would be best to have simple animated models on the deck, where the size of these units is a compromise between the ship size and the unit size (note that for an attack animation, you can have some units stand up and shoot an arrow). Similar to how doors and windows are a compromise between the building and the unit size.

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Should not go 1:1 scale with ships. Current scale is good. I don't think many player care about "perfect" scale between soldier and ship. This image show "normal" size soldier on deck of Ptolemy quinquereme:

9fknPTS.png

I think player know that 1:1 scale is impracticle. I think like with building you scale up the human-comparable things on ship to get a good scale with soldiers but keep the ship at good playable size (not too big). So in the case of the quinueremis above the tent, the shields, and the 3 towers should be scaled to the soldiers (instead of scaled to the boat). Just like how doors and props on building are scaled to soldiers, not to the building.

More ship models would be cool, like Hemiolia and Trihemiolia, the successor to the Trireme. And ship destruction animation.

Here is good article of ships of era: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hellenistic-era_warships

Edited by wowgetoffyourcellphone

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Hm, yea :D

The picture with the solders on top the ships actually looks really good! :)

I'm on it. I've already collected a lot of information on the ships of the timeframe 200-300 BCE (thanks for the wikipedia page, I've already extracted a lot from there, additionally from the german, french and greek pages, navistory.com, some forum and blog entries, three books). From this I'm on the way to build a framework to produce ship-models for the roman, greek and punic ships (later for the eastern mediterranean). If you like, I can post a few screenshots later (mainly 3D sketches and measurements at this point). I hope that with the framework it should then be easy to produce as many ships and ship-types as the heart desires.

For greek ships (and similarely for roman and punic ships), for instance, I have found that in the timeframe Triaconters, Biremes, Triremes, Quadremes, Quinquereme, Hexeremes and possibly Septeremes were used. Reconstruction of the precise measurements is slightly difficult due to conflicting and/or missing data for most of these. Penteconters seem to have not been used in a large scale anymore in the timeframe while the half-type ships (e.g. Hemiolia and Trihemiolia) just about came into service from the eastern mediterranean (and were often simply classed with the Biremes or Triremes).

Perhaps one could even designate a few of the really large ships as hero units, so players can only build one of these at most or something :D

I'm also thankful for any additional information people have on this complex topic (besides the sources I've already mentioned). Or do we even have an expert on ancient naval vessels around?

I'm not sure how interested everybody is in this, but on request I can also put up summaries of the stuff I've found in here.

Edited by Alpha975

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Love to see some working ship combat mechanics for 0.A.D would add even more fun to play and see different ships getting destroyed by fire or ramming.Awesome Ship combat is one of the things i miss with 0.A.D and would add new tactics and ways to play to the game.

Good luck with the new models and don't forget to make different destroyed models :P

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The Tessarakonteres or Juggernaut is the key large ship that is intended to be included for the Ptolemies, and to have Ptolemy IV increase the build limit on them from 1 to 5.

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I am all for ships being garrisonable like walls! Boarding actions and ramming would be fantastic too (but you know, one thing at a time). I really do hope there is a full naval overhaul to accomodate those features because it would be sweet. Currently the naval combat doesn't really stand out.

Edited by Ptolemy
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Ok, a tiny progress report with screenshots.

My recherches showed that during some of the biggest naval battles of antiquity (in the first and second punic wars), the main ships of the punic and roman navies were quinqueremes. The romans also had hexeremes as command ships, while carthage used some septiremes (that they bought from greece). Both navies also used smaller ships (Hemiolias, Trihemiolis, Liburnias, Triremes and Quadriremes) though these smaller ships were not the main fighting vessels and had tasks like troop transportation, scouting etc. In carthage, for instance, at 219 B.C., a squad of ships was made up of 50 quinqueremes, 2 quadriremes and 5 triremes.

So what I wanted to start with is roman and punic quinqueremes. Here are some screenshots concerning the (about half way modelled) roman ship:

post-20018-0-56838800-1433606515_thumb.jpost-20018-0-60520700-1433606516_thumb.j

It's based on a reconstruction from the naval architect J.F. Coates and on the way to being improved with images from coins, parts of ships that have been found since then and some literature that has been published since then. If anybody is interested, I can also provide a little background to the ships, if people enjoy it ;)

Yes, I agree: naval combat alltogether needs some overhaul. I've looked at a few multiplayer-matches on youtube and have not found a single one with mayor naval combat.

Is it perhaps possible to enable ramming, ranged attacks and boarding as three seperate attack modes for ships? I also though of having ship models as 4 seperate parts (left right, front, back) that could be damaged individually, and depending on the part that is destroyed first, different death animations. I also though of having the option to change the armament in the ships after they are built. E.g. heavy naval artillery (light naval artillery also was on almost every large ship) <-> corvus (for roman quinqueremes) <-> siege artillery (a squad of roman ships that had siege artillery equipped just before was ambushed in the first punic war and several cities were bombarded from ships in antiquity) <-> archer towers <-> nothing (for extra speed and maneuvering) <-> fire pots (rhodesian navy used them for a close in battle once).

I can certainly provide the necessary 3D models, textures, animations etc ;)

I've also found somebody asking about LODs somewhere. I'll also provide some LOD models in case this will be implemented in the future (and then people can have truly massive naval battles).

Edited by Alpha975
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You probably shouldn't bother with LODs, those will be most useful on entities that are used very often (like different types of trees, or rocks).

Currently, we also lack any way for the user to select an attack. It would also be necessary for the charge attack. And boarding would be very hard in any case. We'd probably stick with ranged attack and ramming.

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Hm, yea, makes sense. Perhaps ships would ram automatically when an enemy ships comes close to its prow and is in front of it and then go into a cooldown for 10 seconds or so before it can perform the next ram?

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Currently, we also lack any way for the user to select an attack. It would also be necessary for the charge attack. And boarding would be very hard in any case. We'd probably stick with ranged attack and ramming.

How about these suggestions on navies:

Village Phase:

Fishing Boat - just fishing, no combat, no point in micro-ing a very small transported size for those.

Merchant/Transport Ship - Can trade or ferry units, upgrades for more transport capacity on a following phase.

Bireme Class Warship - Can ram like all warships and board or skirmish depending on crew (or maybe civ dependent crew and role). Can land her starting marines, which makes space for loading extra units. Same with loses. Small crew, say 10 units, landing them could work for an early game raid.

Town Phase:

Trireme Class Warship - Same with Bireme, but bigger, faster, with a larger crew. Alternatively, Biremes could be boarding ships and Triremes missile ships, or the opposite, but none of the two seems historically correct.

City Phase:

Quinquireme Class Warship - Possibly less agile than the other warships, with the additional option for artillery crew, or perhaps by default an artillery ship.

Boarding could be done with having the ships lock together (maybe with some hook "missile" animation, like in RAF:CAW Lion mentioned earlier) and have the capture points determined by marine numbers/strength, losing capture points during the action could also reduce the crew.

Since capturing is in, ship capturing would be a nice addition as well, as it was very common in naval battles and mostly done through boarding. Would it be that hard to implement the way stated above (no need for real visible boarding, just similar to building capturing, only with an extra attribute killing marines gradually as the "melee" goes on).

Edited by Prodigal Son

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