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 Post subject: Scars MX Beta by SLO_PreACheR
PostPosted: Sun Nov 14, 2004 9:13 am 
Trackologist
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It looks like Jr.'s (PreACheR) back on the scene, and his new track is lookin' none too shabby! :)

Here are few observations I made after checking it out yesterday and last night:

There are a few spots where you don't quite know whether to turn right or left. Essentially, there are no real visual clues to let the racer know exactly where he/she is, and in my opinion, with a track as wide open as this (no mountains or tall hills, buildings, etc) you should be able to run this baby without a map. Adding to the problem is the texture contrast...or lack thereof in some spots, making it somewhat difficult to pickup where the track ends and begins. Again, this is only in a few spots, and could be easily remedied I'm sure.
- To cp <a href="http://mtm2.com/~forum/images/scarsdirection5.jpg">4</a>

- To cp <a href="http://mtm2.com/~forum/images/scarsdirection4.jpg">6</a>

- To cp <a href="http://mtm2.com/~forum/images/scarsdirection3.jpg">8</a>
-- A few comments on this shot. It may look obvious with respect to which way you have to turn, but in the game it's a bit fuzzy. Also, pros will attempt to cut thru the hay bails to gain a favorable position on their opponent(s). The prob is the cp marker doesn't extend out that far. My suggestion is to close off the space between the hay bails...or just remove them altogether and stretch the marker out across the full length of the road.

- To cp 4

- To cp <a href="http://mtm2.com/~forum/images/scarsdirection1.jpg">13</a> (finish line)

The texture work looks good overall. I took snap shots of a few spots that could possibly use a little blending:

- At cp <a href="http://mtm2.com/~forum/images/scarstexture3.jpg">6</a>

- At cp <a href="http://mtm2.com/~forum/images/scarstexture2.jpg">8</a>

- En route to cp <a href="http://mtm2.com/~forum/images/scarstexture1.jpg">10</a>

<a href="http://mtm2.com/~forum/images/scarshay.jpg">Here's</a> a hay bail that's floating. Regarding these hay bails, which he uses as immobile barriers. I suggested he find another model for that purpose. When ppl see hay bails, they think "movable object." Nowadays, just as track makers no longer use groundboxes as landing surfaces for obvious reasons, they also try to stay somewhat in touch with reality by making objects of this sort moveable. Furthermore, I think another model would be better suited given the atmosphere he's created for this track. He's a hard-headed little twerp, though...so we'll see if he listens lol.

Just as you come off the bridge heading to the finish, there's a <a href="http://mtm2.com/~forum/images/scarswhoop.jpg">whoop</a> that makes the landing awkward...very awkward. I recommend moving it closer to the finish line if you absolutely must have it in there.

That's it - that's all I saw for now. I'll keep looking at it though. It's great to see you back in action, Jr.! And I love that you didn't come back empty handed...like your brother, Gutterboy lol.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Nov 14, 2004 12:18 pm 
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One last thing - adding vegetation such as what you see here (even the very small stuff) at certain junctures around the track close to the outer edges of the road would help provide more contrast so that racers know exactly where the racing surface begins and ends. In some cases they can even serve as reference points so that you know where you are on the track. Still, a few directional signs (2, maybe 3) at key locations would help immensely.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Nov 14, 2004 12:27 pm 
Glow Ball
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Agreed, the racing line isn't obvious at first, but by the third lap I had it pretty much figured out.

The textures, on the other hand, are more interesting. He's got three or four shades of brown in there for the road and while some spots do look, let's say, patchy, I think they help identify the different areas of the track ... which, after all, adds to the visuals for the racing line - even if a few touch ups might reduce the patchiness of them. I mean, let's face it, there's a lot of sublty going on here throughout and any major changes would take a lot away from the over all design. That said...

The hay bales could go a long way to solving much of these problems. If they were positioned with a plan, almost a motif, in mind (for example, only on the outside of curves to help show the way), then the racing line would be clearer - whether or not they were movable. And/or, some of the flag markers from <a href="http://mtm2.com/~tracks/tracks.cgi?search=momentum+x">Momentum X</a> could be put to good effect, either on their own or in combination with the hay bales (eg, flags outside, bales inside of the course). I'm not saying he has to. Just ideas.

The bump at the finish line. If you take that last turn wide, you can angle the departure from the bridge so you don't even really touch that bump. Is the bump a penalty for a bad turn? I dunno, I see your point and can go either way on it.



[ edit ] snuck in ahead of me. If direction signs are used, please set them to normal or complex scenery level.

[ edit 2 ] Had the headphones laying on the desk, so I didn't catch the tune. Any clues what it is?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Nov 14, 2004 12:52 pm 
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Hehe why just normal or complex? By in large racers use sparse scenery because they don't want anything that isn't absolutely necessary in the way. To me directional signs are more of a functional model (at least they would be in this track) as opposed to eye-candy, and as such I think it would be better if they were visible regardless of what setting is used.

I hear ya on the sublty and texture combinations and such, and I like it. And really, I'm the last person in the world to complain about visual clues and reference points and such, but on a track with this kind of layout, those things really shouldn't be in doubt in my opinion. Yeah, after several laps on it by yourself it's easy to know when and where to turn, but we raced 4 laps then another 5 laps, and in the heat of the battle with other trucks in the way coupled with trying to overtake "the other guy", it's real easy to lose track of where you are on that thing. That's not a characteristic I'm used to experiencing lol.

I don't think he should saturate it with a whole bunch of greenery either, but a little more contrast in certain spots definitely wouldn't hurt.:)


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Nov 14, 2004 4:00 pm 
Glow Ball
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> http://mtm2.com/~forum/images/scarsdirection5.jpg
You know you're not going straight because of the trees, and you can't really go left. Getting rid of the hay on the inside would probably help, and a brighter marker on the left-front would offer the contrast you're looking for and stand out more to a racer.

> http://mtm2.com/~forum/images/scarsdirection4.jpg
Again, trees directly in front and that concrete barrier is probably a good hint not to go left.

> http://mtm2.com/~forum/images/scarsdirection3.jpg
This is probably the worst spot of the bunch. You're not going straight, again because of the trees, but those hay bales are pointing straight. It's not just a matter of not knowing which way to turn, but the visual clues are contradicting each other. The trees say not straight ahead and the hay bales are saying not to the right. Moving the hay bales to the other side of the road would be a big help here.

> http://mtm2.com/~forum/images/scarsdirection2.jpg
To me, that says straight-a-way, but those floating hay things are a big problem. You could put more of them, closer to the road, if you need more direction.

> http://mtm2.com/~forum/images/scarsdirection1.jpg
Try and go left, or straight, I dare ya.

There are times for signs, yes there are. But why use them when you can build in more natural looking sight lines? This track needs tweaking, most definitely, but not so much as you'd think. Most of the problems have to do with those hay bales and how they've been used.

Note. Regenerating the track palette might help some, if it hasn't already been done.

Note. That straight, off the start line, toward cp1 is very nice since it offers two routes side by side in the one road, each with it's own strengths and weaknesses. But! where are those different color textures when you need them?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Nov 16, 2004 11:45 am 
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Hey, thanks for beta testing and everything Phin, I was hesitant to post it up here, Cope persuaded me, glad he did though, lol.

We just ran over the final version with some guys, all looks good, Cope will post it somewhere..I guess.:)


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Nov 17, 2004 1:34 am 
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Welcome back Preach. It's a bit late now but i'll sure check it out and see if there are any cuts. Where can i get it?

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Nov 17, 2004 3:51 am 
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I have it, Jump. I'll send it over to ya when I get home in the morning.. I don't believe there are any cuts. The cp layout coupled with the landscaping seemed to negate the possibility of shortcuts, but by all means check it out. I may have missed something.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Nov 17, 2004 3:54 am 
Glow Ball
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> Hey, thanks . . .

No prob. Glad to see you back in the swing of things.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Nov 17, 2004 4:02 am 
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I have it, Jump. I'll send it over to ya when I get home in the morning.. I don't believe there are any cuts. The cp layout coupled with the landscaping seemed to negate the possibility of shortcuts, but by all means check it out. I may have missed something.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Nov 17, 2004 9:24 am 
The Dog House
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You got a lot of good help, so I'll just say this is another great team SLO track in the makes. :D

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