Friday, June 17, 2011

Ride System Simulation

The last couple of days have been spent on one of the bigger technical challenges I've been preparing for.  I built the functioning ride system (and rider viewing engine).  It actually works!

I built this in Unity using a module called Splines.  The track, walls and scale are all correct but the speed is very high to offset the fact that there is basically nothing to see yet.  I still need to add the speed changes but that is proving complicated since my "train" is actually 4 autonomous vehicles that would close in or spread apart as they pass over a track-based speed trigger.  I need to figure out how to get the lead car's speed changes to trigger the other 3 at the same time.  Working on it.

The vehicles do make the 90 degree turn for the Flight of the Imagination scene but I haven't put in the elevation changes yet.  That is mostly because I don't know where they are yet.  I think my next challenge besides the speed triggers will be synchronizing the turntable.  I may be able to cheat with this since I only have to deal with one train and one POV.  I would love to eventually create a fully functional 3rd person view of the entire ride running at once.  That would be extremely complicated though.  I would basically be faced with the exact same technical challenges as the original ride programmers.  I'm going to focus solely on the single train 1st person ride POV for now.

My plan is to make this a "scene" in the game.  When you approach the load, you'll be moved into the vehicle and ride it restrained this way.  In the load scene, there will be an endless train passing through load to give the correct Omnimover appearance but it will switch to the single train for the ride.

Speaking of scenes (which I'm learning about now), I've decided to divide the interactive model into 4 scenes: outside (including the main ride lobby / load), the ride (with restrained POV), Captain EO interiors (with music), and eventually, The image Works.  This will lower the load times and break the project into more manageable chunks for programming.  The next major update should include that break up minus The Image Works.  We'll see.

No comments:

Post a Comment