32nd America's Cup

General question for Sail Simulator (raising sails, pulling sheets, etc.)

32nd America's Cup

Postby ajnasreddin » Sat 09 Jun 2007 - 20:54

Hello everybody,

Generally I'd describe myself as a casual, weekend, take-it-easy, it's-all-about-the-journey kind of sailor, which I only do virtually on top of it all. But I do like to race every now and again - and I do take an interest in the America's Cup.

http://www.americascup.com/en/

So, passing by my software store the other day, I noticed and had to pick up the Virtual Skipper 5 edition for the America's Cup. I'm not a great sailor, and I usually lose. Still, it was nice to be out on the waves again.

The program works great on my current computer - 60 to 70 fps. Looking at the manual, I was surprised that they let you paint your own boat (using those .dds files) then race online. Also, the weather and sceneries look great. Sailing in San Fransico Bay at sunset, with the city glittering, was very impressive. Also, they thought enough to include street noises should you deviate far off the race course and into the docks (as I did :wink: ). The whole scenery seems sailable (sailed under the Golden Gate Bridge, which again was really far off the race course). There is a terrain editor so that you can make your own sceneries.

Take a look:

http://www.virtualskipper-game.com/en/

So, Stentec, this is what's out there. I'd still prefer an openended sailing program. If Stentec can make SS5 look as nice as Virtual Skipper with realistic navigation (like WinGPS), ship and scenery designer, great physics, etc. - AND if we could sail on continuously as in Virtual Sailor - then I'd say SS5 would have just about everything.
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Postby ajnasreddin » Wed 13 Jun 2007 - 18:10

OK, the initial excitement of my new game has worn off. It is a nice game for racing, but on closer look the scenery editor is primitive and uninteresting - no possibility to recreate any coastline, rather you may create a rather blockish coast with some nice models. Also, looking at the configuration for my computer, everything was set on the lowest setting (pretty much) :( . So when I set things on medium settings ('cause hey! I'm still supposed to have a half decent computer) my framerates dropped significantly (to 20 - 28 fps; I guess shadows and what not tax the computer a lot). Looks like I need that new computer after all.

One of the nice things about the game is that the ISAF rules are in the game, so there is no doubt if you've made a mistake and have to do a 360. It would be nice if we had an option for ISAF rules in SS5.

One negative point for Virtual Skipper is that the team characteristics (crew capability, hull, sails, etc.) seem set and unchangable - so if you want the best team you have to race as American :? (though for the America's Cup, team characteristics seem to reflect reality a bit more).

Also, one of the nice things about being a skipper is that you can press a button and get the crew to raise and lower the sails - thus one can demonstrate one's skill in sailing. It would be nice if the sails in SS5 could be lowered and raised by the crew - but a bit slower and a bit more realistic than the pop out sails in SS4 - or have the mouse wheel work as a winch with some restraint on speed for realism.

The boats in VSkipper are nice - still I liked being able to move about the boats in VSailor. Perhaps Stentec will allow this in SS5. :)


Anyone interested inISAF rules - visit the website:

http://www.isaf.com/

By the way, I'm winning a few races now - sailing under an American flag of course :wink: .
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Postby Barry » Wed 13 Jun 2007 - 22:34

Tried the demo of it probably a year or 2 ago.
But just not my scene.
Seem to remember I decided to go my own way out of the pack, opposite to the other boats to explore and kept getting reminded it was the wrong way, turn around.


Anyway all that cold water not good for the rheumatism at my age. :wink:

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Postby ajnasreddin » Mon 18 Jun 2007 - 20:27

Barry,

You might try the updated demo for the America's Cup - if you can download it.

For myself, it's a nice diversion every once and again. I'm looking forward to SS5 - though I have lots of expectations. Too bad Stentec is not communicating so much about it. While it looks like we will be able to individualize many things, I'd still like to know about some of the limitations, etc. One of the biggest things for me would be the ability to sail from scenery to scenery - that would make things much more interesting. Also it'd be nice if sceneries could be quite a bit more detailed than they are in SS4.

Just a few more months and we'll see what's it all about.
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Postby Barry » Mon 18 Jun 2007 - 21:19

Hi AJ the demo Virtual Skipper may appear on disc in one of computer mags.
Will try it if I see it.

Edited re SS5 but just
We wait :wink:

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Postby elite0259 » Thu 28 Jun 2007 - 23:05

ajnasreddin wrote:Barry,

One of the biggest things for me would be the ability to sail from scenery to scenery - that would make things much more interesting.


the loading time would take FOREVER, and you'd need a scale on where everything is, but these sceneries have no real place on earth. it is a good thaught however
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Postby ajnasreddin » Tue 03 Jul 2007 - 17:37

elite0259,

Why should it take forever? Well, if we took the old way of doing things it probably would. The new technology allows for a more possibilities. Take a look at some of the newest simulators out there and you'll see how much detail is possible.

Barry's sceneries of the west of England certainly are some place on Earth.
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Postby Barry » Tue 03 Jul 2007 - 19:46

I think in Virtual Sailor you can sail aound the world, or at least between the current routes, although no longer use it myself.

The scenery loads when you reach the point for the next scenery.
Even with the Stentec sceneries for use with sail and m/b sim I think only a small part of any single scenery is in memory at any one time to make it easier on frame rates.

Not sure how open sea part is done. maybe the boat carries the ocean with it. Only a very small section of the water is animated with waves anyway as the animated height waves merge. into just a flat animated wave texture in the distance.

Nothing is what it seems in simulators so I hope we have the option not to include boat shadows and boat reflections as you need a basic upside down boat stuck on the hull to carry around with you wherever you go :wink:
-----------------------------

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Postby yachtie2k4 » Sun 12 Aug 2007 - 06:05

you know you can design your own boats in VSK4?
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Postby ajnasreddin » Mon 13 Aug 2007 - 19:51

You can "paint" your own boats - designing is another thing. The sails are one-sided, so one side will be a reverse image. I hope we won't se that in SS5!
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Postby yachtie2k4 » Sat 08 Sep 2007 - 14:26

no, you can design your own boats, from dinghies to cats to mono's you can basically design anything.
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Postby ajnasreddin » Sun 09 Sep 2007 - 17:41

Could you elaborate on that? I couldn't find any info on designing boats, but I'd give it a try.
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Postby Jeroen Schlaman » Thu 18 Oct 2007 - 15:06

ajnasreddin wrote:You can "paint" your own boats - designing is another thing. The sails are one-sided, so one side will be a reverse image. I hope we won't se that in SS5!


SS5 will support double-sided texturing of the sails. To the reversed-text problem can be solved.

Greetings,
Jeroen Schlaman
Stentec Developer
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VSK 4 & 5 boat designing

Postby yachtie2k4 » Tue 27 Nov 2007 - 10:55

hey aj,
if you look at any of the virtual yacht clubs for VSK i think you will find a fair few different designs. here is a link to VSK Australia which has a forum with different topics including skin (colour of the boat n sails), actual boat design, courses and a fair few other things http://www.vsk-aus.com/index.php?option ... &Itemid=88
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Postby ajnasreddin » Sat 08 Dec 2007 - 17:26

Thnaks, I'll have a look.
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