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xLODGen - Terrain LOD beta for FNV, FO3, FO4, FO4VR, TES5, SSE, TES5VR


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#16 alt3rn1ty

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Posted 17 February 2018 - 08:09 AM

Yep I dont get why (with all their experience) Bethesda still cant do as good as the community genius. I suppose in terms of balancing the resolution of LOD textures they are forced to be a little conservative for the target range of machine capabilities, but the glaringly obvious land mismatches are beyond excusing. Unless the people who are outsourced for making the CK have never been told to sort it out, and so are unaware there is still a problem still after a couple of game generations on.


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#17 zilav

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Posted 17 February 2018 - 08:32 AM

Bethesda never aimed for perfection after Morrowind, they just bring every development aspect of the game to some "good enough" threshold and switch to something else. When all game parts are good enough, they release a game and modders do the rest of their job while Todd waits for his GOTY title.

 

I'm so glad they didn't get it with Fallout 4 and there is another studio that showed them how open-world games can be done when "good enough" is not enough. They had no real competition for a decade and became lazy with everything: story, visuals, engine and dev tools too.


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#18 Kesta

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Posted 17 February 2018 - 10:14 AM

Okay, 1st set of tests on a small worldscape:

 

Performances and simplicity of use are just incredible.

Cell border protection is absolutely magical, not just in game, but also fix awful seams on the worldmap other tools used to produce.

Haven't played much with quality settings yet, as it's a small worldspace, I'm not sure LOD16 even show up unless I go near the very edge of the map, so performances are always good (tried with all LOD level at quality zero).

 

 

However, I got one big issue. Water height seems to be good only for 1 cell of the chunk, not all of them:

Attached File  enb 2018_02_17 15_59_12_35.jpg   40.74KB   5 downloads

 

Any hint ? The default terrain height compared to default water height in the plugin is ridiculously huge. But I'm not sure that's the issue, since there is one cell per chunk that actually seem to have proper water level ? The far away ones seems to be alright, but i'm not sure they got generated by lodgen, I think they're just extra loose lod files without actual landscaping in the plugin. The part at the bottom of the screen which is alright is the limit of the loaded area.

 

 

Edit: Ok, actually, the MultiBound of the water in the generated files all have zero as Z extent, where vanilla files have the full height (so for a -8000 water level, 4000 of z extent positioned at -4000). Might be the issue ? The vertices seems to be at a pertinent height so I really don't get it.

 

Edit2: No... I'm really confused. Adding a shader to the water shape just to see the shape seems to indicate it's actually ok:

Attached File  waterlod.PNG   202.35KB   4 downloads

 

Edit3: More investigation: Look like the multibounds for water have the default BSCP_CULL_NORMAL, while Vanilla files have BSCP_CULL_ALLPASS. Still doesn't solve it though. 

However, I think I found it. The BSSegmentedTriShape only have a single segment in its Segment array. That's about the only thing left in the files that look off.

 

Edit4: That was it! rebuilding the segment array manually in nifskope did the job  ::):


Edited by Kesta, 17 February 2018 - 11:34 AM.

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#19 sheson

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Posted 17 February 2018 - 11:56 AM

Okay, 1st set of tests on a small worldscape:
 
Performances and simplicity of use are just incredible.
Cell border protection is absolutely magical, not just in game, but also fix awful seams on the worldmap other tools used to produce.
Haven't played much with quality settings yet, as it's a small worldspace, I'm not sure LOD16 even show up unless I go near the very edge of the map, so performances are always good (tried with all LOD level at quality zero).
 
 
However, I got one big issue. Water height seems to be good only for 1 cell of the chunk, not all of them:
attachicon.gifenb 2018_02_17 15_59_12_35.jpg
 
Any hint ? The default terrain height compared to default water height in the plugin is ridiculously huge. But I'm not sure that's the issue, since there is one cell per chunk that actually seem to have proper water level ? The far away ones seems to be alright, but i'm not sure they got generated by lodgen, I think they're just extra loose lod files without actual landscaping in the plugin. The part at the bottom of the screen which is alright is the limit of the loaded area.
 
 
Edit: Ok, actually, the MultiBound of the water in the generated files all have zero as Z extent, where vanilla files have the full height (so for a -8000 water level, 4000 of z extent positioned at -4000). Might be the issue ? The vertices seems to be at a pertinent height so I really don't get it.
 
Edit2: No... I'm really confused. Adding a shader to the water shape just to see the shape seems to indicate it's actually ok:
attachicon.gifwaterlod.PNG
 
Edit3: More investigation: Look like the multibounds for water have the default BSCP_CULL_NORMAL, while Vanilla files have BSCP_CULL_ALLPASS. Still doesn't solve it though. 
However, I think I found it. The BSSegmentedTriShape only have a single segment in its Segment array. That's about the only thing left in the files that look off.
 
Edit4: That was it! rebuilding the segment array manually in nifskope did the job  ::):


Ops. I introduced a bug in beta 5 that causes this. Should be fixed in beta 6.
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#20 Genius384

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Posted 17 February 2018 - 04:19 PM

This is a beta of a never version of FNVLODGen (and the other listed games) and eventually this update will make it to the official Nexus pages of FNVLODGen (and the others).

Instead of using pre-made LOD mods, you can use this to create (hi-res) terrain meshes/textures for the current load order yourself.

xLODGen is generally easier to use and much quicker than GECK/CK/Oscape and can produce much, (even way too much) higher quality results.

Appreciate the clarification (and the revolutionary work you are bringing to these old games).  


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#21 Kesta

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Posted 17 February 2018 - 08:21 PM

(for those interested, Beta 6 solved the segment issue yielding invisble water. Forgot to post this in the public thread).

 

[OLDRIM]

I think you can update the recommendation to bump up quality by a fair margin for LOD32.

Even with 5, fine details around cells that have water tend to get a bit wonky, and yield some innacurate shape for the map. Still didn't try to build for skyrim worldspace, but I think it should be easy to spot on the morthal swamp or similar area.

At 3, I had virtually everything alright. However, I think I'll have to bump up the vertex limit for LOD32 and quality <= 3. Otherwise some chunks become corrupted, nifskope can't open them and they're not displayed in game. If I try quality 0 on LOD32 on properly landscaped world, none of the chunks can be opened with default vertex limit.

 

Going to play with brightness/contrast/gamma a bit later. It might be due to custom textures, but the noise around road meshes still show pretty awful seams (that's not exclusive to lodgen's LOD mind you). Really wish we had the possibility to select noise.dds on a per-worldspace basis :( bad bethesda!

 

 

 

A request if there is an update in the pipeline (or is there an expert mode somewhere like there was for dyndolod ? I believe this feature was in), and it's simple enough to introduce:

Ability to build only 1 level of LOD at a time. Typically to test out different settings for map (only LOD32), or for the aforementioned experience to try to get around road seams (only need LOD4 to make those test).

 

 

Will post feedback on the quality for lod32 and noise workaround settings tommorow, hopefully with a few pretty screenshots :) 


Edited by Kesta, 17 February 2018 - 08:22 PM.

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#22 sheson

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Posted 18 February 2018 - 04:39 AM

I think you can update the recommendation to bump up quality by a fair margin for LOD32.
Even with 5, fine details around cells that have water tend to get a bit wonky, and yield some innacurate shape for the map. Still didn't try to build for skyrim worldspace, but I think it should be easy to spot on the morthal swamp or similar area. At 3, I had virtually everything alright.


My values are just for people to have starting point. Over time I am sure there will be guides for the different games with different settings for different results.

In case of the main worldspaces like Skyrim/Tamriel, the vanilla LOD32 meshes are manually edited especially around water bodies and coastlines. In that case it might be better to keep the vanilla LOD32 files. I am testing "things" that may improve those coastlines at the cost of larger files of course.
 

However, I think I'll have to bump up the vertex limit for LOD32 and quality <= 3. Otherwise some chunks become corrupted, nifskope can't open them and they're not displayed in game. If I try quality 0 on LOD32 on properly landscaped world, none of the chunks can be opened with default vertex limit.


I was sure the 32767 would always be low enough. I will have to look into that, especially that they do not open in nifskope. That should always work.

 

A request if there is an update in the pipeline (or is there an expert mode somewhere like there was for dyndolod ? I believe this feature was in), and it's simple enough to introduce:
Ability to build only 1 level of LOD at a time. Typically to test out different settings for map (only LOD32), or for the aforementioned experience to try to get around road seams (only need LOD4 to make those test).


Check "Specific Chunk" and set the drop down to the desired LOD level and leave WS empty. That should do that.

Edited by sheson, 18 February 2018 - 04:40 AM.

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#23 Pickysaurus

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Posted 18 February 2018 - 04:04 PM

sheson, I'd like to share this screenshot of how Kesta's LOD turned out for Beyond Skyrim... it's fantastic!
unknown.png


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#24 sheson

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Posted 20 February 2018 - 12:09 PM

I think you can update the recommendation to bump up quality by a fair margin for LOD32.
Even with 5, fine details around cells that have water tend to get a bit wonky, and yield some innacurate shape for the map.

Coming back to quality and water ... It is always a good idea to compare results to what CK produces btw. It is not very pretty with water either, as it doesn't allow to adjust quality at all.

I uploaded a beta 7 that has a new option "Optimize Unseen" that does things to terrain vertices that are under cell water.

*On* will merge triangles that are completely under water. This should generally result in less data being used for terrain under water, leaving more detail to the surface that can be seen.

In addition, selecting a value from the drop down will lower shallow vertices that are under water. This results in more steepness of the coastlines, which means they have more detail for the same quality setting.

This will also means that fewer terrain triangles are close under the water surface, which means there will less z-fighting.

This optimization can be used to optimize the higher LOD levels, especially LOD32 for the map. Probably best to leave *off* for LOD level 4.


Edited by sheson, 23 February 2018 - 05:40 PM.

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#25 alt3rn1ty

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Posted 23 February 2018 - 03:51 PM

Beta 7 is giving up an out of memory error for me, running the xLODGen.exe not the 64 version ..

 

 

Log - https://www.dropbox....dit_log.7z?dl=0

 

 

YTVmi54.png

 

 

DMiGDdU.png


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#26 sheson

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Posted 23 February 2018 - 05:36 PM

Beta 7 is giving up an out of memory error for me, running the xLODGen.exe not the 64 version ..


So the obvious answer is to use the x64 version.

If a x86 tool is used to start xLODGen.exe that can be tricky, however you can simply start LODGenx64.exe manually from a command prompt. Just copy the execution line from the log from

 

[DLC2SolstheimWorld] Running "D:\xLODGen\Edit Scripts\LODGen.exe" "D:\xLODGen\Edit Scripts\LODGen_Terrain_DLC2SolstheimWorld.txt"

 

and change it to 

 

"D:\xLODGen\Edit Scripts\LODGenx64.exe" "D:\xLODGen\Edit Scripts\LODGen_Terrain_DLC2SolstheimWorld.txt" 

 

and paste it into a command prompt window.

 

 

Alternatively, you can try to disable Optimize Unseen for higher LOD levels.


 


Edited by sheson, 23 February 2018 - 05:37 PM.

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#27 alt3rn1ty

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Posted 23 February 2018 - 06:39 PM

The x64 exe worked ok, I just changed the Target path of my SSE desktop icon to ..

 

D:\xLODGen\xLODGenx64.exe -sse -lodgen -o:D:\0-SSELodGen-Out\

 

Just an observation which is probably expected, previous run in beta 6 (sans Optimise Unseen)

Produced 18,572 files (7zipped 148mb)

 

Beta 7 with Optimise Unseen on

Produced 18,524 files (7zipped 150mb)

 

So aswell as cutting down on overall vertices produced its cutting down on presumably unnecessary files too ?


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#28 sheson

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Posted 23 February 2018 - 06:53 PM

The x64 exe worked ok, I just changed the Target path of my SSE desktop icon to ..

 

D:\xLODGen\xLODGenx64.exe -sse -lodgen -o:D:\0-SSELodGen-Out\

 

Just an observation which is probably expected, previous run in beta 6 (sans Optimise Unseen)

Produced 18,572 files (7zipped 148mb)

 

Beta 7 with Optimise Unseen on

Produced 18,524 files (7zipped 150mb)

 

So aswell as cutting down on overall vertices produced its cutting down on presumably unnecessary files too ?

 

It should not change the number of files. Not sure why there would be less. 


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#29 alt3rn1ty

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Posted 27 February 2018 - 03:19 PM

How do we prevent angular looking water / rivers, on the world map when using Optimize Unseen

 

rJ5DP7L.jpg


Edited by alt3rn1ty, 27 February 2018 - 03:34 PM.

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#30 sheson

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Posted 27 February 2018 - 04:11 PM

How do we prevent angular looking water / rivers, on the world map when using Optimize Unseen

 

Try with a value of 500 for Optimize Unseen for LOD 32. The higher the better the coastline, the larger the file for the same quality.


Edited by sheson, 27 February 2018 - 04:11 PM.

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