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NAM: Development

Started by memo, April 29, 2007, 06:33:33 AM

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LucarioBoricua

Latest update on NAM development activity at a glance, with NAM 44 fresh out of the oven!


LucarioBoricua

:o Uh-oh! Look what's going on!  :o



AsimPika3172

Wow!  :bnn: Better added traffic stop lights for person walking over roads, avenues etc
I loves Sim City forever!

ulisse99

Introducing Network Addon Mod 45 (NAM 45)

Tomorrow at 2:00 AM CEST there will be a live stream on the new features of Network Addon Mod (NAM) 45. The Live streaming will take place on this Twitch channel of UlisseWolf


ulisse99

First of all, thank you for participating in the stream. For people who missed streaming you can retrieve it here.

In the meantime stay tuned for more updates

LucarioBoricua


For those wondering why I've been mostly quiet for these past weeks, I've been really busy gradually building up functionality for the Mid-block Crosswalks, the launching feature for the Pedestrian Revolution Mod!

Currently, I'm working on providing Left Hand Drive (LHD) support, once that's done, I'll shift to work on the cosmetics (European textures, T21 and final US texture corrections) and last bits of functionality (path fixes and some adjacency stability code).






AsimPika3172

I will waiting!!!  :bnn:  &apls  :thumbsup:
I loves Sim City forever!

ulisse99

#1767
Introducing Network Addon Mod 46 (NAM 46)

9 December at 1:00 AM CET there will be live streaming on the new features of Network Addon Mod 46 (NAM 46) in the channel youtube channel of Ulisse Wolf. Here is the streaming link and use the bell to get the streaming reminder


In the meantime, enjoy some promotional images of NAM 46

PREVIEW CONTENT. THE FINAL VERSION MAY BE DIFFERENT FROM THIS BETA VERSION






ulisse99

Introducing Network Addon Mod 46 (NAM 46)

For those who missed the Live Streaming on the features of Network Addon Mod 46 (NAM 46) can recover it by watching this video. Thank you for participating in the live stream and stay tuned for more NAM 46 news

PREVIEW CONTENT. THE FINAL VERSION MAY BE DIFFERENT FROM THIS BETA VERSION


LucarioBoricua

:sunny: Just upgraded this with some upcoming NAM 46 goodies for the RealHighway! ;D



jeffryfisher

Beautiful, but one thing I'd do differently purely from an SC4 mechanics standpoint: I'd tunnel the entire lowest level from off-ramp to on-ramp, leaving only 2 levels at or above ground where all the cross-overs are.

The connection geometry can be exactly the same, but tunneling traffic effectively teleports, so it doesn't contribute to congestion anywhere between entrance and exit.

On the other hand, multilevel traffic is summed in each cell that is even clipped by a corner of diagonal flow, which means that your visually elegant design could suffer 3-fold "intersection" congestion at several crossing points (a weakness of the game until we get the source code to fix it).
Modding PC games since 1993 (back when we needed hex-editors)

AsimPika3172

ELEVATED RAMP EVER!!!  :bnn:  :thumbsup:  &apls  &apls  &apls
I loves Sim City forever!

LucarioBoricua

From the makers of the Earthworks Tutorials, bringing you...

The birth of the
NAM TUNNEL & SLOPE MOD!!!


Starting with the Medium / Standard variant! This one is intended to mimic accurately the shape of the FLEX ramp-styled height transitions. Steeper and flatter variants will be developed in the foreseeable future.




Appearance of network slopes for an L1 / 7.5m height difference:





Appearance of network slopes for an L2 / 15.0m (road networks) or 15.5m (rail networks) height difference:







This won't make it for NAM 46, but we did fix some important things in the next NAM version to enable their appearance soon™.

jeffryfisher

&apls
I've long thought that the construction exemplars would be at home in NAM. However, they control a bunch of other things, like bridge starts, pylon limits, construction costs etc. A lot of players customize some settings to suit their own taste for ease-of-construction versus good looks versus functionality. For those of us who tinker, a written table of NAM's alterations would let us merge those with our own.

I especially like setting the smoothing to run more cycles over longer stretches of road/highway. The defaults for those come from an original game designed for minimum computers of 20 years ago when smoothing might affect performance. Given today's CPUs (or even 10 year old CPUs), we can afford much more smoothing.
Modding PC games since 1993 (back when we needed hex-editors)

LucarioBoricua

Continuing the slope mod work, now I have all 5 variants programmed!


1. Very Easy or Very Steep: this is the steepest variant that's still flatter than the Maxis default settings. Even then, it still matches the short height transition between ground and elevated Maxis Highway (example shown).





2. Easy / Steep: this variant is steeper than the medium / moderate / NAM default settings, but is flat enough to help make nice-looking networks. This one does not feature vertical curvature, so it's intended to be more forgiving to use at the expense of realism. For the most part, this one is most comparable to the NAM puzzle piece height transitions.  This is the option I'd recommend to players who don't want to be bothered with proper design of their networks but still want something that looks nice and is reliable.





3. Moderate / Medium / NAM Default: this one strikes a balance between aesthetics and functionality, by approximating the slopes of the FLEX and smooth height transitions and FLUP portals included in the mod. This one does feature some vertical curvature along some networks, but generally at a limited and unobtrusive level.  This one I'd personally recommend as the preferred option for players who take care to design their transportation networks.





4. Strict / Flat: this one favors realism, while still acknowledging some flexibility for gameplay purposes. This has vertical curvature for most networks, with the exception of the street. Players using this one must use precision terraforming, realistic scales in the game, or alternatively flatter topography.  This one I'd recommend for more advanced players who value a realistic but still usable set of slope mod settings.





5. Realistic / Very Flat: This one's not for the faint of heart, featuring slopes which are nearly identical to real transportation network designs. This has vertical curvature for all networks, and the curves are especially smooth for high speed networks. Players using this one must use precision terraforming, realistic scales in the game, or alternatively very flat topography. It's also possible to not notice if a network is flat or sloped for the monorail or the rail. It's highly advisable to use the terrainquery cheat and the in-game grid to visualize these really flat slopes.  This is the option I'd recommend for players who want to use strictly realistic designs for their transportation networks, with a fair warning on the trickiness of steeper terrain unless doing careful preparations.


AsimPika3172

Awesome slopes ever!!!  :thumbsup:  &apls  &apls  &apls  :bnn:
I loves Sim City forever!

jeffryfisher

I don't know much about monorail lines, but I do know that HSR has steeper grades than heavy freight. That's because heavy freight is, well, heavy -- plus HSR can put power on every axle, so it can deliver a lot more motive traction to handle steeper grades. Hence:
Quote"The TGV Sud-Est line has vertical grades as high as 3.5 percent (3.5:100). SNCF's use of steeper grades is also considered a plus, as it reduces route miles, earth work, and civil structures costs."
Modding PC games since 1993 (back when we needed hex-editors)

LucarioBoricua

That's something I'm still debating. So far, these are the initial points of consensus from the NAM team members who have given their input:

  • There's no interest whatsoever on developing Monorail for its own sake, the nearly unanimous opinion within the team is to always think and treat the Monorail as the base network which we override into high-speed rail variants. As such, slope parameter settings for the monorail, coming from the NAM team, are pretty much guaranteed to be subordinate to its repurposing as high speed rail. Conversely, real monorails do support steeper rails than conventional rail, light rail, metros or high speed rail, their slope support is more comparable to freeways/motorways.

  • More members specified that they want to see Rail as steeper than Monorail, despite the actual fact that dedicated HSR lines can support somewhat steeper grades than conventional rail lines providing freight rail service. Meanwhile, the Hybrid Railway has the slope behavior of the RealRailway, owing to the construction of its network flags.

  • The team members care more about playability than strict realism. A typical scenario would be novice and casual players trying to build rail lines through existing cities, and then becoming annoyed and frustrated whenever their conventional rail lines fail to build because their slope is too flat for their rolling terrain, compounded by the local flat cells at each grade crossing. Having the RealRailway as the flattest network would be problematic for this.


If I were designing the slope mods on my own, to publish separately (Lucario Boricua's Tunnel and Slope mod), rather than as an official NAM version:

  • I'd definitely put HSR as steeper than RealRailway. More specifically, twice as steep. In my own research on railway geometric design, dedicated high speed rail lines tend to top out at around 3.5 to 4% grades. For comparison, freeways/motorways tend to top out at 6-7%, while railways with freight service tend to reach up to 1.5 to 2%. I've revised design standards from German (ICE), Japanese (Shinkansen), Spanish (AVE) and American (California's HSR), and these were the numbers I found for HSR.

  • I'd still leave a single tile road network with really steep slopes, for the purposes of precision terrraforming. My personal choice is the RealHighway, as this network benefits from slope flexibility, by putting steeper slopes for the ramps, and flatter slopes for the mainlines. A more practical second choice would be the One-way, which could simply be built with smooth slopes by overriding Road, or by using Road to pre-smooth the terrain. Street is the most likely popular choice, but the lack of native diagonal support is a drawback. It's possible to compensate it with the diagonal street FLEX pieces, but not all players would realize this.


One reminder is that these are prototypes, these are subject to change, and I'm specifically requesting feedback from players. I'll publish the prototype settings once NAM 46 gets published, separate from the main mod. Depending on player feedback, I'll make a second round of adjustments to refine the various slope mod steepness levels.

jeffryfisher

All reasonable... If anything, I'd allow HSR to be steeper before I'd force RRW to be more level. And if I get good info on where NAM puts its versions of these exemplars, then I can easily customize them to suit my own playing style.
Modding PC games since 1993 (back when we needed hex-editors)

LucarioBoricua

Now available on the LEX! Publishing the Network Addon Mod Tunnel and Slope Mod, Beta version 0.20. Please make sure to provide feedback on its usability, bugs, or any other detail worth mentioning.

https://www.sc4devotion.com/csxlex/lex_filedesc.php?lotGET=4192

The download contains a readme, including tables listing the main slope mod properties, sample screenshots, and the slope mod files, both unified by slope setting, and separated by network.