A small improvement on the Realtime planet rendering front. Normals are working and the lighting now really hits off the planet. It looks a bit dull right now but texturing is the next big thing. And off course a lot a thing don’t look good, like: 1.Cracks 2.Up close it’s a mess. Something does not render well. 3.Textures don’t work although the loading functions should work properly. What I really would like is to enable normal map texturing, because this would dramatically increase the detail.
I have created a true type with a nifty tool named Scanahand What this tool does is take a sheet of characters (created by hand and scanned in) detect the edges and transform it into a TTF font! The font can be used in my game psirens and topotablet with existing tools to create fonts. A lot more precise than the bitmaps I had created before. I have use the tool Type light 3.0 a nice freeware product capable of making or tweaker the vector graphics from an existing ttf font.
When I first started on porting the IUE Planetary Engine I tried to bridge the Gap between Open GL and Directx (XNA) by using a C# framework that enables me to use OpenGL. Well the framework used is the Open Toolkit Library and is, like XNA, more than just a graphics framework. It has besides OpenGL support for input/music and AI. I mainly used it to see if the Geometry part of the porting is correct. And besides that it has some benefits over debugging a VC++ 6.0 application in an obsolete Visual Studio IDE and Visual C# Express 2010. I’ve spent a week to see something in the viewport, but It didn’t. Than I suddenly found that the ViewMatrix was wrong (If something doesn’t render always look first at the ViewMatrix and than the world matrix). Boom, a full planet showed up!! After fixing some input I could seamlessly zoom in and out of the planet at high framerates! So It’s a big step ahead into making this work….
Some updates on the planetary engine front. Fixed a enormous amount of bugs and graphical artifacts. Use TriangleList instead of TriangleStrips (they will be used for easier batching) Fixed Matrix calculation and camera frustum calculation Heigth calculation works correctly Geometry looks correct with trianglelist Some problems / things todo remain though The shape still is oval Rotating around the planet is not stable No lighting/normals No texturing Rendering though VertexBuffers and IndexBuffers Performance is bad because of the lack of buffers.