Opaque vectors?

Timeline interface, with a partially opaque backgroundI took a little break from the murder mystery game today, and instead have been spending time on the VectorStorm renderer. I’ve added the ability to switch between additive mode (the way that vector graphic displays traditionally have rendered in the past), and opaque mode (the way that raster graphic displays traditionally have rendered in the past). This basically means that it’s now possible to fully obscure something that you’ve drawn earlier in the frame, rather than just drawing straight over it, further brightening the display.

The shot here is of the mystery game; the new thing is that there’s a 90% opaque black background behind the timeline interface at the top of the screen, which makes it much easier to read when the camera has moved in such a way that the timeline interface is overlapping with the mansion graphics. But you can still see the brighter lines from under that background.

(You’ll also notice that I’ve avoided taking any screenshots where the zoomed Mansion graphics overlapped the timeline interface up until now — that situation was pretty ugly, before!)

And while I’m here, I’ll just mention.. in many of my recent screenshots, you may have noticed the little green and red bar at the bottom left of the screen, which don’t show up in the released builds I’ve put up on the site. Unless you’ve grabbed the source code and had a play with it, you’re probably wondering what that coloured bar is all about.

Well, that bar is actually a standard VectorStorm thing during development; it displays timing information. The horizontal bar has three segments; first is blue (CPU update time — not visible in this shot), then green (virtual machine GPU time), and then red (OpenGL time; or in other words, real GPU time). If the horizontal bar reaches the first vertical blue line, then the game is running at 60fps. If it reaches the second, it’s running at 30fps. If it doesn’t stop at either of those vertical lines, then it probably means that you’ve told your 3D driver not to wait for vsync even if the game has specifically requested it do so, you mean person.  (That won’t cause problems;  it’ll just make VectorStorm games consume a lot more of your computing resources as they try to render as many frames as possible, instead of waiting for your video card to actually be ready to draw a new frame to screen) :)