A Cartoon Question

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A Cartoon Question

Post by Movingmillion on Sat Sep 29, 2018 12:09 pm

Hello all,
After we finish the Metropolitan Line route, and some other projects, it will hopefully please some members that we will be dabbling into the territory of fictional routes and scenarios! Because of the fact that they are fictional, and not factual, it will be nigh impossible for anyone to be able to get photo-realistic textures for the entire route, possibly for any part of the routes that we plan to do.

That being said, we have a plan for this; when we get around to doing the fictional routes and scenarios, we will be using the old style of BVE graphics; which with hopefully no offence taken, our team has colloquially coined the term cartoon(y) graphics for. In my opinion, the routes with the old style cartoony graphics have a really nice charm to them, and I still enjoy these routes with these graphics to this day! 

With that in mind, I need to ask something (of course). Do you mind cartoony graphics in BVE Routes? Would you avoid a route in this day and age if the graphics were not up to par, but the route still made geological and geographical sense?

Thanks,
Dex Montague
Sole Director of BVETube

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Re: A Cartoon Question

Post by SP1900 on Sat Sep 29, 2018 12:52 pm

Dude the NWM routes are fictional and the textures are certainly not cartoonish
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Re: A Cartoon Question

Post by Movingmillion on Sat Sep 29, 2018 1:30 pm

That being said, the fictional routes we make will be cartoon style. It is not only because of the fact that it is fictional, it is also to bring a certain nostalgia element to the early days of BVE, and to give it a unique art style.

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Re: A Cartoon Question

Post by Quork on Sat Sep 29, 2018 3:37 pm

Actually, I've always dreamt of an aquarel style route. If well done, I think this could really be fun!

...also the railway from Final Fantasy VII would be a great idea, if it weren't for potential copyright issues - there's a very thin line there...
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Re: A Cartoon Question

Post by Movingmillion on Sat Sep 29, 2018 4:26 pm

Thats great to hear.
That idea does sound interesting; I'll put it to my team.

The current fictional projects that we are planning upon the completion of the Met is;
Jubilee Line Green Park to Thamesmead
Northern Line Moorgate-Bushey Heath

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Re: A Cartoon Question

Post by ap1991 on Sat Sep 29, 2018 10:11 pm

Before I reply further to this thread, please take a look at the below screenshot of my interpretation of Sandown station, in your oppinion, what percentage of the textures used would you say were 'photo realistic' ?

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Re: A Cartoon Question

Post by ecreek on Sat Sep 29, 2018 11:38 pm

Can you show us some examples of what you mean by 'cartoon' graphics? I don't see any particular charm in the graphics of early BVE routes. They were as good as people could manage in those days. Computers and software have moved on and I think it is better to take advantage of what can be achieved today. The more real the better in my opinion.

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Re: A Cartoon Question

Post by Dexter on Sun Sep 30, 2018 9:14 am

ap1991 wrote:Before I reply further to this thread, please take a look at the below screenshot of my interpretation of Sandown station, in your oppinion, what percentage of the textures used would you say were 'photo realistic' ?


I will take a guess.
The long brick wall was photorealistic, the platform side was photorealistic, although I can see a lot of noise in there. The windows on the light building were originally photorealistic, but quite obviously the are all the same. The windows on the brick building are also photorealistic, but they both come from the same resource. One has been mirrored into another. The passengers have been made from a photo, or are made CGI. Possibly some vegetation is photorealistic, namely the mirrored tree above the brick building. The rest would require a more detailed look. Smile
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Re: A Cartoon Question

Post by graymac on Sun Sep 30, 2018 10:11 am

It isn't always possible to obtain suitable source photographs for the required textures when making a route. Very often the developer's efforts stand or fall on their Photoshopping skills by "converting" a pic of something else. When done right, hardly anyone notices. Poorly done, it's obvious and might look "cartoony".
Limitations on processing power and rendering with older legacy versions of the program and hardware reduced some of the potential quality of the end product, but not as much as some of the second-rate textures in a few of the BVE4 offerings at the time.
"Cartoony" - it's a good epithet you've coined there, guys! It's not a look I would want to work towards, but "whatever floats your boat", as they say. Some people might "buy it", but I can't see why.
The whole point of a "simulation" - by definition - is to attempt to recreate a veneer of "reality", part of which is in the movement and part in the appearance. Sloppy graphics isn't part of this equation in my book, and that's my last word on the topic.
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Re: A Cartoon Question

Post by Movingmillion on Sun Sep 30, 2018 11:00 am

It is interesting to see a mix of opinions on this subject. I truly did not intend to make fun of the original creators of the routes from that era, and the style of graphics I was referring to was the era when, probably specifically underground routes, looked like this. Perhaps the charm of it would not be seen by most or some, but perhaps a sense of nostalgia would be seen by some?


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Re: A Cartoon Question

Post by Quork on Sun Sep 30, 2018 11:21 am

I'll point out I think a truly cartoonish (with high quality drawn textures) could work. I don't consider the pictures you've shown us positively cartoonish in any way.

A different thing about this thread: "I don't think this word means what you think it means" - photorealistic doesn't mean "made from a photo of the actual object", it means "visually indistinguishable from a photograph", meaning a well done CGI texture with absolutely zero actual photographic sources can be photorealistic, while a sloppily edited bad photo texture isn't.
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Re: A Cartoon Question

Post by Movingmillion on Sun Sep 30, 2018 11:49 am

Ah yes. I realise that now. I think a more suitable term here would be 'photographic' textures.

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Re: A Cartoon Question

Post by ap1991 on Sun Sep 30, 2018 9:45 pm

Dexter wrote:
ap1991 wrote:Before I reply further to this thread, please take a look at the below screenshot of my interpretation of Sandown station, in your oppinion, what percentage of the textures used would you say were 'photo realistic' ?


I will take a guess.
The long brick wall was photorealistic, the platform side was photorealistic, although I can see a lot of noise in there. The windows on the light building were originally photorealistic, but quite obviously the are all the same. The windows on the brick building are also photorealistic, but they both come from the same resource. One has been mirrored into another. The passengers have been made from a photo, or are made CGI. Possibly some vegetation is photorealistic, namely the mirrored tree above the brick building. The rest would require a more detailed look. Smile 

95% Photorealistic, though most textures have been through Photoshop or Paint.net to be adapted to suite the needs of the objects concerned.

The platform edge has a lot of noise because my SD card in my camera was full so had to resort to using the iPhone!
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Re: A Cartoon Question

Post by alex_farlie on Thu Oct 04, 2018 10:25 am

Movingmillion wrote:Hello all,
After we finish the Metropolitan Line route, and some other projects, it will hopefully please some members that we will be dabbling into the territory of fictional routes and scenarios! Because of the fact that they are fictional, and not factual, it will be nigh impossible for anyone to be able to get photo-realistic textures for the entire route, possibly for any part of the routes that we plan to do.

...

With that in mind, I need to ask something (of course). Do you mind cartoony graphics in BVE Routes? Would you avoid a route in this day and age if the graphics were not up to par, but the route still made geological and geographical sense?

Thanks,
Dex Montague
Sole Director of BVETube

I can think of one fictional route where 'cartoonish' graphics would be very appropriate Smile

How much do you know about the Far Tottering and Oyster Creek?,  With the animation and plugin support in current releases, you could even perhaps have the 'quirks' of how to operate these engines programmed into the simulator.   Someone would need to dig out a lot of archive images though, as the line was only ever fully featured in the drawings of Rowland Emmet.

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Re: A Cartoon Question

Post by Movingmillion on Thu Oct 04, 2018 4:24 pm

Hmm. Haven't heard of that one. By the sounds of it, it would be a route somewhere like the countryside, perhaps? That would be something that I think we could dabble into, as we'll be doing Aylesbury for the 1961 Metropolitan Line route (the last version we're doing)

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Re: A Cartoon Question

Post by alex_farlie on Thu Oct 04, 2018 4:29 pm

Movingmillion wrote:Hmm. Haven't heard of that one. By the sounds of it, it would be a route somewhere like the countryside, perhaps? That would be something that I think we could dabble into, as we'll be doing Aylesbury for the 1961 Metropolitan Line route (the last version we're doing)

Start here - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Far_Tottering_and_Oyster_Creek_Branch_Railway, you might need to do some research reading though Smile ~~~~

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Re: A Cartoon Question

Post by Movingmillion on Thu Oct 04, 2018 5:14 pm

Huh. Inspired by Heath Robinson, who just so happened to live in my town! Interesting prospect, and these kind of railways might be one of the few exceptions to our London Transport only rule; as I believe it could give BVE something different.

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Re: A Cartoon Question

Post by alex_farlie on Thu Oct 04, 2018 5:19 pm

Movingmillion wrote:Huh. Inspired by Heath Robinson, who just so happened to live in my town! Interesting prospect, and these kind of railways might be one of the few exceptions to our London Transport only rule; as I believe it could give BVE something different.

Well it was  Transport "in" London at one point Laughing , albiet a narrow gauge railway at the Festival Pleasure Gardens back in 1951. 

You will note I also suggested the Tower Subway and Mail Rail, again Transport 'in' London, historical in the first instance, and for freight/mail in the second.

Also if you have contact details for Steve Green, you might want to consider Building the Northern Line Battersea extension, (assuming you can find the plans used for the consultation before it was built).. Smile

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Re: A Cartoon Question

Post by Movingmillion on Thu Oct 04, 2018 5:53 pm

We have discussed doing the Battersea Extension, albeit that being a while ago. the Tower Subway being a stauch interest in doing. Will have to take quite a few concessions with the textures though.

That being said, in the case of that, we might not go with the cartoony style, and we might do a style similar to that of BusheyHeath on his old City and South London Railway project which is a shame that it never saw the light of day. Of course, however, I understand that people leave the community, and/or have other commitments, or life means that they can't continue, but alas the photos were interesting to see.

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Re: A Cartoon Question

Post by Glory! koshikii on Sat Oct 20, 2018 5:43 am

Cheers Movingmillion for making this thread.
I've been thinking on this for a long time until life caught up to me and I had to turn away from Bve in general to focus on family.

Back in February and March, I was trying to make a nostalgic route going all in: Bve 2 and 4, Mackoy's route and structure viewer, MS Paint, Notepad... I ended up with some platforms complete with roofing, fencing and signage, ballast, a train, grass, a background and even a bus. All textures are low-res bitmaps.

I sure did enjoy making them and I would love playing a scenario with these kinds of textures but I wouldn't think the community would like 64x256 textures, it'll probably be extremely blurry nowadays.

I personally am okay with slightly well detailed meshes and upscaled textures to also have details, gradients, and some form of anti-aliasing, and that's what I'm going to do for my next scenario (if I ever release it like I didn't for the past five million of them) as I think it's the best of both worlds: graphical simplicity from 2.6 times while keeping details from today.

Quork wrote:Actually, I've always dreamt of an aquarel style route. If well done, I think this could really be fun!
I don't think an aquarelle or watercolor style would easily work on OpenBVE or any render with lighting at all, but I understand if it's a source of confusion: simple shapes with simple colors, similar to Bve graphics of days past.

Plus, I believe (Open)Bve, while a simulator, doesn't mean it's not a game. In fact, it's a train simulator, it's supposed to be good at simulating trains, which it is, and it's not obliged to be good at graphics. Simple graphics in simulators are fine as long as what's being rendered is comparable to what happens in real life. An example of this is Visual Pinball 8. It lacks lighting effects (has only got simple shadows) and reflections but has still got decent graphics for a 2002 emulator. Just because it's a simulator doesn't mean that it *has* to look realistic. It's a simulator as long as you get the idea of what is going on and none of it is unrealistic. It would become a game if for some reason it was a train with wings and laser cannons or it was a "pin-fireball" table.

Off-topic: I'd like someone to oversee my work, I have no friends in this community and working alone is really harsh! I need a little push sometimes to keep going.
Cheers.


Last edited by Glory! koshikii on Sat Oct 20, 2018 3:37 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Re: A Cartoon Question

Post by Movingmillion on Sat Oct 20, 2018 12:50 pm

Precisely. Sometimes some less realistic routes can give a different atmosphere while playing.

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