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Author Topic: [Resolved] Seamless 1.0 and Seamless 2.0 Usage Strategy  (Read 991 times)

Aamnark

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Iíve read many posts on Seamless1.0 (SL1) versus Seamless2.0 (SL2).  And Iíve tried to pay particular attention to the appropriate sources and facts (recommend sizes, consideration of gameplay activity, stresses on client, considerations of level design, etc)

As we are now gearing up to start our actual level design and production (step-by-step, slowly, and methodically ;) ), I just want to ensure we have assimilated the information properly and are proceeding intelligently.

We believe that utilizing a mix of SL1 and SL2, with a higher degree of usage of SL1 is the best route.

I understand that to grid out the entire map (SL2) would bring into play too many technical variables and considerations associated with Seamless 2.0 as applied against game play and activity designs. (essentially, just complicating the crap out of everything - not "not doable" but why introduce that?)

Of course it would be nice to just Seamless 2.0 link a nice open map/world, then go to town.  But there seems to be just too many variables to complicate already many complex, interdependent consideration: level design, game play, assets,  game systems, game mechanics, etc ... and not to discount the unpredictable: you can't always, no matter how you try, predict where players will congregate (unless you put little in the world or have too much restrictive terrain).

In addition, going heavy in Seamless 2.0 constrains the sizes of the areas (in most cases, as suggested).  Where I see others doing well with sizes from ~500m X 500m up to 700'sm with SL1 ... the Seamless 2.0 is 1/2 that ... thus requiring more actual areas (not that it is complicated, and not sure how much more work ... but in this world - whatever keeps counts down and things simpler is nice).

The key seems to be in being creative (and not repetitive) with the transition topology.  And using the SL2 in specific areas for specific, planned designs reasons.

Are we thinking right?

I've read that people thought (as we first did) to use small Areas as "links" between major areas and use SL2 on either end of the smaller link area.  But some have gone away from that ... any reasons why?  Or, is that method is essentially a "bridge" so why not simply use the SL1?

Thanks for help!!!

« Last Edit: Apr 01, 13, 12:48:11 PM by HE-Cooper »
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HE-Cooper

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Re: Seamless 1.0 and Seamless 2.0 Usage Strategy
« Reply #1 on: Mar 22, 13, 11:26:06 AM »

Area size is pretty much always a factor of what's going on in that area. BUT, when you start having a number of areas seamlessly linked to one another, you start running into questions of graphical load, heavy gameplay accross seamless links, etc.

A seamless 1.0 link allows transition from a public space into instanced private versions, whereas a seamless 2.0 link is always going to take you from instance x of area y, into instance x of area z, regardless of whether you've decided that instance x is the "public" space, or a private instance.

All it comes down to is load, and how much you want the player to be able to see in all directions, and run in all directions, forever. All a seamless 1.0 link does is require that the player traverse a shared "topology" between the two areas so that the client can unload the area behind them and load the area in front of them. This can certainly give you more control, but also means that you don't get to have the feeling of an endless world where the player can run in one direction for 2 hours. That's never sounded like fun to me, but a lot of folks nowadays are trying to recreate that feeling of oldschool EQ games where you had to wait 8 hours for a boat sometimes. :-D

Personally, I would create small regions of gameplay using seamlessly 2.0 linked areas specifically placed to handle the load of gameplay at different points. I would use 1.0 links to transition into internal buildings and such, underground areas, and then would use large 1.0 liinks, or simply use load screen transitions between all of the regions of gameplay I created. This strategy allows for the most number of variables when it comes to player behavior and server load, and allows you to easily change and adapt later on in your development cycle.
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Aamnark

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Re: Seamless 1.0 and Seamless 2.0 Usage Strategy
« Reply #2 on: Mar 22, 13, 12:40:29 PM »

Thank you Cooper - makes sense.  Your description in last paragraph makes sense - better said than what I was trying to say!

I like the thought process and ability to maintain flexibility as development then testing progresses ... with the differing tools available, and some thought in initial map construct, being able to adapt without stepping back (too much) is critical.

Appreciate help!

« Last Edit: Mar 22, 13, 12:47:01 PM by Aamnark »
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