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Atmosphere Scattering

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#1 jtgibson



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Posted 15 August 2005 - 03:35 PM

The only problem with the planetview as I can see is that the 23.5 axial tilt presently assumes that Earth has no atmosphere. In reality, the 11 km thickness of the "useful" part of Earth's atmosphere is more than enough to bounce photons across the planetary surface for a region extending quite a bit beyond the 23.5 tilt -- the northern half of British Columbia is certainly bright during daylight hours of wintertime, for instance.

I think the best way to accomplish this effect would be to break up the current light source into six light sources arranged in a hexagonal pattern (with the "face" of the hexagon towards the planet and the "vertices" of the hexagon consisting of the light sources). Each of these light sources would thus have a slightly improved angle of incidence against the planetary surface, allowing a somewhat decent simulation of atmosphere scattering's effect on illuminating the surface beyond the areas that the sunlight is directly affecting.

The truth of the matter is that more than 50% of the Earth's surface is illuminated at any given time. Atmosphere scattering contributes a great deal to the illumination along the 60th parallel during their winters (upper Canadian winters are usually very bright, such that you can see unaided for most of the night), and the 70th parallel also receives quite a bit of illumination (the upper reaches of Iceland, for instance, despite having no sunlight for quite a long portion of the year, remain relatively bright).

Unfortunately, this would come with a notable performance hit (that is, a 500% increase in CPU time dedicated to lighting)... maybe as a game option instead?

Thoughts? Am I just being needlessly worried about the potential difficulty of darkness in Xenocide, compared to the difficulty thereof in X-COM?




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Posted 15 August 2005 - 04:45 PM

I don't see how this really matters. The mission is either day or night... perhaps dawn/dusk. Whatever.

#3 x0563511



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Posted 15 August 2005 - 11:36 PM

I don't see how this really matters. The mission is either day or night... perhaps dawn/dusk. Whatever.


This determins whether or not the local time coordinates with day/night bud. It also makes the geoscape look a lot more realistic to those of us who notice. What can it hurt?

#4 red knight

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Posted 16 August 2005 - 03:50 AM

That is a visual hint that has already been taken in account in the optimal Planetscape rendering item of the planification.

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