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Is Flight Possible?

Posted by Rob McGinnis , 02 March 2007 · 2170 views

NWN2 General
Question: Could flying ever be a possibility?

Answer: The NWN1 and NWN2 engines really don't have a concept of up or down when it comes to how the engine sees the world of the game. Adding that understanding would probably require a lot of work and the re-writing of large sections of the engine.




I don't understand why there can't be a 'hover' spell, just for RP, as casting a Highlevel-Spell, for example, makes your character hover above the ground. Why can't this animation be made for some time longer than the casting animation? One wouldn't have to be able to fly where one can't walk, one wouldn't have to be allowed to adjust the height over ground for the hovering - just a lasting hover-animation for the sake of RPing in Multiplayer. Then there are birds. They have no visible connection to the ground, too. Probably I get it all wrong, but it doesn't sound like 'rewriting the engine' to me, as these things are already present in the engine...
QUOTE(samm @ Mar 9 2007, 03:09 AM)
I don't understand why there can't be a 'hover' spell, just for RP, as casting a Highlevel-Spell, for example, makes your character hover above the ground. Why can't this animation be made for some time longer than the casting animation? One wouldn't have to be able to fly where one can't walk, one wouldn't have to be allowed to adjust the height over ground for the hovering - just a lasting hover-animation for the sake of RPing in Multiplayer. Then there are birds. They have no visible connection to the ground, too. Probably I get it all wrong, but it doesn't sound like 'rewriting the engine' to me, as these things are already present in the engine...

However the engine will calculate you as if you was on ground!
Other creatures would attack (or interact) with you as you was on the ground!
So (also if it was possibile) just for appareance, fly would be totally unuseless... (it could just give you some AC or attack bouns... at the max).

But the problem (especially with NWN2, than not NWN1) is that in game peoples can't detach both feet from the ground! (Even objects, as well)
Take for example the "sitting" problems with sizes. Lower size characters sits at a different height than higher one just because them didn't lift feet.

So hover is not only unuseless (if not for appareance, or some fight bouns at the max), but also hard to implement. wink.gif

Creatures that already doesn't touch ground (es: bats, birds, imp and similare) are 3D builded as if virtually there was an "invisible" pole on the ground that support them (in the animation, the pole height changes). We can say that is similar than system used on real miniatures. original.gif
So to do what you say, Obsidian should modify every 3D model to have an invisible 0 height pole that should change in hover... and then add new animation for everyone of them (with more game heaviness),
Well, have you watched some Character cast a high-lvl Spell (Lvl. 8 probably, Lvl. 9 )? The actually caster hovers above the ground (both feet not touching the ground). As I said above, I don't care if there is no actual bonus and all creatures can attack you as usual, as both could easily be scripted - if only they gave us scripting access to that hover-anmiation...
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Rob McGinnis
Mar 13 2007 10:33 AM
QUOTE(samm @ Mar 11 2007, 02:49 PM)
Well, have you watched some Character cast a high-lvl Spell (Lvl. 8 probably, Lvl. 9 )? The actually caster hovers above the ground (both feet not touching the ground). As I said above, I don't care if there is no actual bonus and all creatures can attack you as usual, as both could easily be scripted - if only they gave us scripting access to that hover-anmiation...


I think the best way to explain it is to say that the creatures inhabit a cylinder of space. The cylinder touches the ground and rises into the air (for all intents and purposes) infinitely. You could definitely animate a character hovering within that vertical cylinder, but for the rules and engine, the creature would effectively be standing on the ground.

So, for instance: you have a wizard that appears to be floating 50 feet above you. You could approach the spot of ground directly under the wizard and attack the wizard as if he were standing right next to you.
Whoa, that's pretty awesome, I think original.gif So hovering a foot above the ground could be implemented and used for play (only on a PW, as it doesn't add anything but coolness), as creatures could attack anyone hovering one foot above the ground anyway. And hovering 20 ft. or something above ground level could be implemented for cutscenes, for example... One could design an area with cliffs or a wall that are set to not have collision detection for a cutscene, and let some wizard fly up there (in fact, he would still be hovering above the ground beneath the cliffs/wall, but it would look as if he had flown up there). End the cutscene and return the camera to the player character, facing an identicall wall/cliff with an identical wizard standing upon it... sorcerer.gif An other useful thing that comes to mind would be fishes 'swimming' at different heights in an underwater level.

Could we have any access to controlling character height above ground (or absolute height) inside this cylinder? I'm sure this could be used in many ways, even if it's "just" an animation and not any kind of 'real' flight.
If we are talking about the possibility to change creature's Z axis, I agree.

As I sayd elsewhere, we need 2 dedicated functions that changes Z axis nominally (one) and based on the ground level (ground + X, the other).

If we (builders/scripters) will have that functions, we could decide by ourselves if somebody may fly or not... or we can use that functions for other purposes and special effects. wink.gif

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