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PostPosted: Sun Aug 09, 2009 8:17 am 
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Hi all...

I am the project lead of a new shard with different goals than just playing a game. We are interested in using UO to educate kids about history while playing a game. As part of our research we came across Iris2 as a possible alternative client for connecting to our shard.

So I have a lot of questions:

1) What is the current status of the Iris2 project? Is it still underway?

2) Is the client still limited to the default map sizes in UO?

3) Does the client require a special server or can it connect succesfully to a shard operating with RunUO, POL, Sphere, or other software?

4) Does the client require substantial PC resources? Can it operate flawlessly on older PCs?

5) Does the client require broadband or can it operate on a dialup connection without lag and errors?

That will do it for a start, looking forward to seeing the response.

Rhydderch aka
Kevin Plummer,
Histories in Minature - CEO
VirtualHistory - Project Lead


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PostPosted: Sun Aug 09, 2009 10:34 am 
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hi and welcome =)

1) iris is still under active development, it is missing some polish to become really userfriendly for the general public, like some more graphical configuration dialogs, currently things like hotkeys still have to be set by editing text files. Other shortcomings to note are that a bunch of 3d models for specific houses are still missing, and that there are still performance problems in big cities with lots of players and custom houses.

2) it isn't limited to the default osi mapsizes, and can be customized for different sizes, one example for using different mapsizes :
Code:
<table>
    <string key="gLoginname"></string>
    <boolean key="gPolServer">false</boolean>
    <number key="gServerSeed">4294967295</number>
    <number key="gLoginServerPort">2593</number>
    <string key="gPassword"></string>
    <string key="gLoginServerIP">zwischenwelt.org</string>
    <table key="gMaps" keytype="string">
        <table key="0" keytype="number">
            <string key="name">Trammel</string>
            <number key="mapwidth">768</number>
            <number key="mapheight">512</number>
            <string key="skybox">cleansky</string>
            <number key="fog_r">228</number>
            <number key="fog_g">208</number>
            <number key="fog_b">166</number>
            <string key="mapfilename">C:/path/to/custom/maps/map0.mul</string>
            <string key="staidxfilename">C:/path/to/custom/maps/staidx0.mul</string>
            <string key="staticfilename">C:/path/to/custom/maps/statics0.mul</string>
        </table>
    </table>
</table>

you can use shard-configuration files like that and place them under iris/config/shards/
mapsize can be adjusted with the variables mapwidth and mapheight .

3) iris doesn't require serverside modifications

4) iris does require modern hardware, it isn't fully optimized and uo itself wasn't designed for 3d graphic accellerators and uses lots of small independent objects, so rather highend graphics card and cpu are needed to play iris with an accceptable performance.
There will still be improvements and optimizations in the future to enable acceptable performance on below-high-end modern hardware, but iris uses some graphical techniques and isn't made to be run on really old hardware.

5) broadband is not required as the uo network protocol was designed for small bandwidth and iris doesn't require any changes to the network protocol.


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PostPosted: Sun Aug 09, 2009 4:56 pm 
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Thank you for the welcome and the answers, now expanding on this...

Quote:
1) iris is still under active development, it is missing some polish to become really userfriendly for the general public, like some more graphical configuration dialogs, currently things like hotkeys still have to be set by editing text files. Other shortcomings to note are that a bunch of 3d models for specific houses are still missing, and that there are still performance problems in big cities with lots of players and custom houses.


What does the development team of Iris need to get the client finished?

Quote:
4) iris does require modern hardware, it isn't fully optimized and uo itself wasn't designed for 3d graphic accellerators and uses lots of small independent objects, so rather highend graphics card and cpu are needed to play iris with an accceptable performance.
There will still be improvements and optimizations in the future to enable acceptable performance on below-high-end modern hardware, but iris uses some graphical techniques and isn't made to be run on really old hardware.


Does the client have these requirements if limited to 2D operation?[/quote]


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PostPosted: Sun Aug 09, 2009 9:44 pm 
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what we need ?

for 3d mode someone to manage and coordinate all the art stuff, and maybe attract a few artists would be cool,
our team currently only has 3 programmers that don't have too much clue about making art or about what kind of infos/feedback/tools etc artists need.

we tried to put a few infos together in the wiki :
http://iris2.de/index.php/Model_Hotlist

but so far we didn't manage to attract many contributors or keep the few that we did get. i guess it really needs a dedicated person for this, programming skills wouldn't be required for coordinating art, rather organisation skills.

aside from that, a few more lua coders willing to dig into our codebase a bit and not afraid to ask questions as documentation is scarce. Mainly to help us polishing stuff and making config dialogs so it becomes more user-friendly. Maybe a razor-like config dialog, since lots of uo-players seem to be familiar with razor.

Also someone knowledgeable in high-performance 3d graphics, maybe familiar with the nvidia-perfhud profiling tool, for some advice on how we can improve performance and maybe make measurements/analysis of iris to find bottlenecks and the cause of performance problems.

> Does the client have these requirements if limited to 2D operation?

partially, 2d doesn't strain the hardware as much as 3d mode does, but it still relies on the graphics card more than the original client does, so it'll be slow on really old machines with bad graphics cards.


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 11, 2009 4:11 am 
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ghoulsblade, I have sent you a private message; please let me know if you have received it.


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 11, 2009 10:36 am 
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got it =)


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 17, 2009 6:26 am 
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another question.....

can/could Iris2 handle multiple maps? I beyond the few that UO currently has. Could it work with say 12 maps?

Also, you mentioned that Iris does not share the same limitations on map size that the UO client does... What is the actual map limitations on size?


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 17, 2009 6:58 am 
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12 map : yes, up to 255 using the standard
kPacket_Generic_SubCommand_MapChange
mapchange packet (1 byte for mapid), more if using a custom one.

might also need serverside changes, but iris doesn't really care too much about the number of maps.

mapsize : you can specify it via xml as listed,
those are in map-blocks, e.g. trammel is 896x512.
since the compass loads a texture of that size,
mapsizes above 4096x4096 will be problematic there,
but fixing the compass to use multiple textures instead of a single one shouldn't be that big of a problem if you really want to go beyond that.
since positions in the default network packages are 16 bit, something like 8192 (16 bit max / 8 tiles) blocks is probably the limit without adjustments there, maybe half if it is treated as signed int serverside..


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 17, 2009 7:46 am 
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so you are saying that there is already support for upto 255 maps and each could be upto 4095x4095 without modification of Iris2?


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 17, 2009 12:18 pm 
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yes, as far as i know that should work out of the box.

if runuo can handle them and if the map-editing tools support that is a different question though ;)


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 17, 2009 12:45 pm 
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RunUO should be able to handle that. You will, obviously, need to configure it to do so.

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