Submitted by , posted on 14 December 2000

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Here's a shot of a space simulator I am working on. It started out as a project to help me learn OpenGL (already knew DirectX) and it's slowly evolving to a space simulator.

Here are some of the features already available:
  • Starfield and sun that can be randomly generated or loaded from a file.
  • Lighting and blending effects that simulate lighting.
  • Lens flare (still working on "pretty-ing" this one up).
  • Level of detail. Planets use less polygons when far.
  • Fog, to simulate the darkness of space. So that planets gradually come into view when approaching them.
  • Features to come:
  • Dynamic parametric clouds (to simulate gaseous planets like Saturn)
  • A heightmap for solid planets. this way, you'll be able to land or hover on a planets surface. Possibly mix that with a parametric approach to get a better LOD without immense heightmaps. (Anyone has tips or leads on this one? send me an email). thought about bumpmaps but my card does not support them, they kill my FPS.
  • 3ds or mesh file loader so I can add some spaceships to this mess.
  • Right now though, I am busy cleaning my code and making it modular. The demo runs on a P2 333 with a Riva TNT2 16MB at a speed of 30 to 60 FPS (depending of the features switched on). Also, I would like to take this opportunity to thank the folks at Discussion forum for helping me out and answering my questions, especially "Punchey" and "dmy". And of course, for a kick @ss site.

    Jake Wolf

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