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Thread: NV3 whats the future of Trees and shrubs for Trainz?

  1. #1
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    Default NV3 whats the future of Trees and shrubs for Trainz?

    As I have been recently trying to get a route together with decent realistic vegetation that doesn't slow the computer down to a snails pace I came to the realization that we now seem to have NOBODY who is making these items, as JVC no longer has a speedtree license.

    I have to ask the question of NV3 , what are your plans to provide us with a set of trees for Australia , Europe and the Americas for use in TANE /2019 that look both realistic and provide a decent frame rate ?

    I take it you DO have a plan , or are you going to rely on content creators to fill the gap? What will the vegetation look like in the next iteration of trainz if you don't ensure that the content is going to keep pace with the game engine ? There is one built in route that ships with 2019 which is full of ancient vegetation splines that frankly look awful, that indicates to me just how little vegetation that is available if you don't use the built in turf.

    I can honestly say that finding vegetation is the biggest time consuming issue that I have in creating routes. There are hundreds of routes that run through the desert, but there isn't one single set of desert plants that have been created to work with TANE or 2019 . I'm fed up of cobbling together ancient items from 2004 to fill gaps that never seem to be filled by anyone . There isnt a sagebrush that has been made that looks great in TANE or 2019 , its a very basic plant, but the only spline and single item assets of a classic sage that are available on the DL date back to 2004 .

    Surely there must be a way that we can fill this gap , or are we just going to keep making great looking engines building and rolling stock and neglect the countryside that the trains run through ? I would be quite prepared to contribute to a kickstarter to fill this gap and when people have produced payware it has generally sold quite well, but if no one can use the speedtree software to create items anymore that are compatible with Trainz then where can content creators go from here ?
    Last edited by dangavel; June 8th, 2020 at 06:25 AM.
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    RMM has a load of speedtrees and shrubs on the DLS, I find they give better performance than the built-in ones.

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    Speedtrees rock, because they use a library I can have 300,000 of the same tree on our route and still get over 30fps. Trainz uses v6 speedtree, where v8 or 9 is current. I'm not sure of the advantages of N3V moving to the latest version would be, but the disadvantage is that we would have no trees for a while, then have the same issue with incompatible v5 trees in TS12. Be careful what you wish for!
    Try Plant - Sagebrush. It's a clutter item so you'll probably need to picklist it in CM and then select it with a double click from the picklist in surveyor. It may not show in the asset list but will still apply. It's variable height as well. Come to think of it, theres cactii as well.
    cheers
    Graeme
    Last edited by grazlash; June 8th, 2020 at 06:48 AM.

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    TS9 and TS10 came out and no one could make 3D trees so for TRS12 we got Speedtrees. The thing about Speedtrees is you need a $400 license and it only works in 3D Max.

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    That is the exact reason I just installed TS10 and turned on compatibility mode. Now I can run the routes I love and they look as the creator intended.

    But really Tony, where is the tree and bushes subscription? The people have spoken.

    William

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    Quote Originally Posted by grazlash View Post
    Speedtrees rock, because they use a library I can have 300,000 of the same tree on our route and still get over 30fps. Trainz uses v6 speedtree, where v8 or 9 is current. I'm not sure of the advantages of N3V moving to the latest version would be, but the disadvantage is that we would have no trees for a while, then have the same issue with incompatible v5 trees in TS12. Be careful what you wish for!
    Try Plant - Sagebrush. It's a clutter item so you'll probably need to picklist it in CM and then select it with a double click from the picklist in surveyor. It may not show in the asset list but will still apply. It's variable height as well. Come to think of it, theres cactii as well.
    cheers
    Graeme
    Same here. Coming from a land of tree tunnels covered over with large oaks, pines, and maples, I can fill in great forests without a stutter.

    IDV does, however, offer a subscription now instead of a full blown outright purchase. This is great, but the issue, as duly noted here, is IDV does not have backwards compatiblity built into their products. If there was a way to convert previous libraries to the current version, we would be all set, but N3V is now stuck with V6 where we are now. Since they are pretty much the only game in town, it's difficult to find something else that offers the trees like this. At one point I looked at Onyx andXfrog, and both were only fixed models with high polygons useful for stills and not a dynamic environment we have.
    Last edited by JCitron; June 8th, 2020 at 05:46 PM. Reason: Fixed a company name. Should be Xfrog
    John
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  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by grazlash View Post
    Speedtrees rock, because they use a library I can have 300,000 of the same tree on our route and still get over 30fps. Trainz uses v6 speedtree, where v8 or 9 is current. I'm not sure of the advantages of N3V moving to the latest version would be, but the disadvantage is that we would have no trees for a while, then have the same issue with incompatible v5 trees in TS12. Be careful what you wish for!
    Try Plant - Sagebrush. It's a clutter item so you'll probably need to picklist it in CM and then select it with a double click from the picklist in surveyor. It may not show in the asset list but will still apply. It's variable height as well. Come to think of it, theres cactii as well.
    cheers
    Graeme
    I don't really care what system Nv3 use as long as it's efficient and comprehensive, what we have st the moment is a system where trees are created that look ok. Then changes make them look transparent, or incompatible. We have old pay ware that can't be updated, it's a mess.
    My understanding is latest version of speedtree software is not compatible with Trainz. I don't use 2019 so clutter items are irrevelant to me, plus I really think that after the game has been going for over a decade we could have a bit more variety of the most common piece of vegetation in a significant part of the USA .
    WARNING! The Surgeon General has determined that the use of the simulator Trainz is highly addictive,

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    Debating whether to post, but I do have a hard time finding trees. None of the conifers seem to look like the ones here in the intermountain region, and the young ones tend to look like bushes. Trees start to look like trees by the time they are 2 meters or so, but they have young growth modes, like a young Ponderosa pine we call "bull pine" because it has gray bark instead of yellow and nice crowns instead of tufty ones. Or Western White pines, that generally have good form and even crowns, unlike what I think I see in Trainz. Or cedars that LOOK like Western Red Cedars. Of course they can't all look alike, but some at least should look right. Too many deciduous trees seem to have dead spikes sticking out, or cut branch stubs or some other weird thing going on. Lastly, they usually have the logo of the creator instead of a thumbnail, so you have to preview or place them all to see what anything looks like, which can take hours. OK. Done venting....
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    Quote Originally Posted by Forester1 View Post
    Debating whether to post, but I do have a hard time finding trees. None of the conifers seem to look like the ones here in the intermountain region, and the young ones tend to look like bushes. Trees start to look like trees by the time they are 2 meters or so, but they have young growth modes, like a young Ponderosa pine we call "bull pine" because it has gray bark instead of yellow and nice crowns instead of tufty ones. Or Western White pines, that generally have good form and even crowns, unlike what I think I see in Trainz. Or cedars that LOOK like Western Red Cedars. Of course they can't all look alike, but some at least should look right. Too many deciduous trees seem to have dead spikes sticking out, or cut branch stubs or some other weird thing going on. Lastly, they usually have the logo of the creator instead of a thumbnail, so you have to preview or place them all to see what anything looks like, which can take hours. OK. Done venting....
    What you are seeing is in part due to the available texture libraries for the content creator to use. It doesn't help that the procedurally created trees use a scaling factor to create the different sizes. Instead of having distinct shapes and sizes, the small trees are mini-me clones of their larger relatives. This can sort of be gotten away with when it comes to conifers, but not all species are like that, and not all conifers have the same shape.

    Trees are also too perfect and usually to big. Don't get me wrong, but where I live all the old growth trees have either been turned into houses, burned for firewood 200 years ago, or cut down to make farmland. What we have now are new growth hardwoods that have filled in to replace the long gone pines and spruce trees. These hardwoods are only 80 to 150 years old at the most. The only places where the old growth trees exist today is in parks and around large estate homes.

    What we need is a bunch of straggly trees to fill in not just the undergrowth, but also large enough to represent the new growth forests found in what used to be farmland now returning to nature, which has happened much in the area where I live.

    Xfrog and others make nice trees, but they are not meant for what we use them for, and they are the equivalent of using great buildings and vehicles from Turbo Squid with their gazillion polygons and super high resolution textures.
    John
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    Quote Originally Posted by Forester1 View Post
    Debating whether to post, but I do have a hard time finding trees. None of the conifers seem to look like the ones here in the intermountain region, and the young ones tend to look like bushes. Trees start to look like trees by the time they are 2 meters or so, but they have young growth modes, like a young Ponderosa pine we call "bull pine" because it has gray bark instead of yellow and nice crowns instead of tufty ones. Or Western White pines, that generally have good form and even crowns, unlike what I think I see in Trainz. Or cedars that LOOK like Western Red Cedars. Of course they can't all look alike, but some at least should look right. Too many deciduous trees seem to have dead spikes sticking out, or cut branch stubs or some other weird thing going on. Lastly, they usually have the logo of the creator instead of a thumbnail, so you have to preview or place them all to see what anything looks like, which can take hours. OK. Done venting....

    Yep, I agree with everything you say, the European trees are probably the best ,they mostly look convincing , its the western parts of north America and most of Australia that are missing out.
    co71 has a whole lot of trees for the rocky mountains but these are billboard trees and they need a heap of updating. if you want to use prototypical trees in pinyon/juniper country that's all there is. JVC was our best hope but hes now unable to make trees anymore . That's why I am asking NV3, do you have a plan ? If they do not then I guess the only way forward is to club together and see if we can commission the trees that are needed to make the routes we want to build. However, we could do that and then find they have been made to look awful by a new release .

    I just looked at the vegetation options on 2019 that are built in. Apart from hating the interface ( its so darned clunky and one is unable to read what the contents of each line of the dialogue box ) compared to TANE .The built in sagebrush clutter is NOT the classic sagebrush that you see in Cumbres and Toltec, Uintah railway areas, its a nice enough plant , but it is nothing new and I have used it in TANE ,however I just looked at several pages of images of sagebrush and I could not see one that resembled it , if it is sagebrush, then its a very very rare plant indeed .

    Big sagebrush artemesia tridentia is what is needed and I would gladly pay five hundred bucks to anyone who could make a decent variety of these plants that didn't slow frame rates down to zero , at the same time manage to look awful and which would not be outdated within a year or two. Any takers ?
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  11. #11
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    I don't use 2019
    Can I ask why not?

    I would be quite prepared to contribute to a kickstarter to fill this gap
    I've always wondered how a Kickstarter project like that would go. Why not give it a shot? Set up a project, work out what sort of team you would need, and go for it. We would help arrange a v6 license from IDV to be compatible.
    Tony Hilliam

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    I imagine this program isn't compatible with trainz ?
    https://alternativeto.net/software/treeit/ or are any of these apps viable alternatives ?
    https://alternativeto.net/software/speedtree/
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    Can anyone point me to where you can obtain Speedtree 6 software?

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    Quote Originally Posted by n8phu View Post
    Can anyone point me to where you can obtain Speedtree 6 software?

    https://store.speedtree.com/

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    Tony_Hilliam;Can I ask why not?

    I am not one to move to new versions of anything quickly , as bitter experience has shown that almost anything new has teething troubles and its best to wait until they have been ironed out before one leaps in boots and all. I'm on a Mac so I don't get a lot of the advantages that PC users do in 2019. , I'm in the middle of updating an old NG route and making a new one that is 2/3rd complete . There are few TANE made assets for NG so the graphics often look dated ,so the advantages of moving to a new version are few for me and in addition, I haven't the time to learn a new version of Trainz and to make sure that an 80 mile route under construction will look ok in it either.

    But my main gripe is I HATE the interface , I purchased it when it came out , shuddered when I explored it and have more or less left it where it is since, when I return to it, I don't see significant graphic improvements over TANE and even when I've used it on a PC laptop with a 6gb 1660T1 card, I have to turn the sliders down so much before it works that I don't see much improvement there either and given the issues some have had with routes corrupting etc , I'm glad I've stuck with SP3 ( which i am doing as if i move to sp4 and have issues with either of the two routes I am working on , I cant go back to SP3 .I dont have endless amounts of hard drive space, i already have two ssds for my Trainz installs , I'm not shelling out another $300 to try out SP4 on a third one


    "I've always wondered how a Kickstarter project like that would go. Why not give it a shot? Set up a project, work out what sort of team you would need, and go for it. We would help arrange a v6 license from IDV to be compatible.

    Its tempting , but I really want to make routes, not coordinate making models in 3d, I already spend most of my time reskinning items anyway and drawing up plans for other model makers for prototypical buildings etc, 3d modelling is VERY time consuming, it takes months to learn the app, develop the techniques to get the assets to look good in your software and even if we did spend the time doing it, we might find that the creations then look lousy in your latest version of the game , this seems to be what has happened to all the tree creators so far , JVC was saying how much work it was to make trees for the program , its probably not profitable in that sense, I cant see asset makers queuing up to volunteer to make trees as there have been several discussion about the topic recently, nobody has come up the pate, harold has had a stroke and lost interest in Trainz and JVC has withdrawn .

    I was rather hoping you might have a plan for the future, it doesn't look like you have does it ? I was expecting this response but its very depressing to be told ' do it yourself"..... obviously vegetation is a low priority for the company .
    So, there we have it , does anyone want to club together to fund this ? Does anyone want to make trees if we pay you to do so ? .
    Last edited by dangavel; June 8th, 2020 at 11:29 PM.

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