Tue, 28 Nov 2017

Winter is ... Anti Aliased

pre-alpha 1748 devlog


During the winter months snow will settle on the world. Fitting time to implement it because only one week ago I walked through the first snow of this year (but it has already receded)

I do not like the way it looks when snow starts to distribute over the map, since it is very grid-like, which the game is, but I try to hide the fact graphically as much as possible. So the way it works now seems like a step backwards. We will see what I can come up with to make it more appealing.


Since icons/symbols in the game have to be resolution/size independent I wanted to use vector graphics. However I had no support in the engine to render dedicated vector graphics like SVGs. Thus I used the only vector orientated code path I had in the game, which was text-rendering. All of the symbols are taken from a font (http://webhostinghub.com/glyphs) and rendered just like any other text. This made it easy to implement (since I needed to change and add just about nothing) but felt like a crutch. In fact, if anyone wants to mod the game and has to touch or add symbols, things become very interesting. As this would mean replacing a font file as a whole, which is cumbersome on the one hand and highly problematic impossible when two or more different mods want to change a single symbol.

Long story short: proper support for SVGs is in the game and all font-based symbols will be replaced by regular SVGs down the road (as well as any regular raster graphics, of which there are none, I think)

Anti-aliasing of Charts

Something that bothered my quite a while now: All of the UI is crisp or nicely anti-aliased. All of it.. but charts

Initially I wanted to solve this problem by using ‘real’ hardware-based anti aliasing, which would have been massive overkill because other than the charts, nothing requires any anti aliasing. And that was precisely the reason why charts were as ugly as they were, until now.

The simpler and much more efficient way to anti-alias the charts is to use feather geometry. Rarely used nowadays, but a quick and simple way to get much better looking charts.

End of the Year

The next release will be the last release of this year: (pre-)alpha 1750 on December 12th. There will be no release in the last week of December (26th). Regular updates will resume with (pre-?)alpha 1802 on the 9th of January.

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