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3D Models for PC naval simulation - The Weather Gage


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Hi, I want to show you the models that I build for a naval PC simulation, which I develop as a personal project. The simulation called "The Weather Gage" is set during the French Revolutionary Wars & Napoleonic Wars and it's possible to command in real time different ship models.

 

I'll start with one of my favorite models with better progress, the 9pdr sixth-rate frigate based on the plans of the HMS Surprise (formerly French corvette Unité)

2009593313_Weathergage_191113Screenshot2019_11.13-23_58_10.54_cut.thumb.png.dac94d30b45c4b7c2ff91b38cdab0ac8.png

1893147417_Weathergage_191113Screenshot2019_11.13-21_59_43_50.thumb.jpg.189a2a5ab1dec36f0bb19076a2518515.jpg

1356121004_HMSSurprise.thumb.JPG.3e5166ef1cb20416542c2b217180fc70.JPG

Other models which are already functional in the simulation (which I can show in following posts):

- Armed cutter  based on the Cutter Alert

- 18-gun brig based on the HMS Grasshoper (Cruizer Class) - later dutch "Irene"

- 18pdr 5th-rate frigate based on the Venus (Hebe Class)

- 74-gun ship of the line based on the Pompee (Temeraire Class)

- Lugger based on the Le Courer

- Small merchant schooner based on the schooner for Port Jackson

- Tartane

 

It would be great to get some feedback about the overall appearance of the models. I try to get a good overall appearance as I cannot invest too much time in small details. For example the rigging is in some cases difficult to model to be look like functional i.e. be animated. Also I have to distribute my time between the modelling & animations of the ships (and other elements like cannons, buildings, terrain) and gameplay development (e.g. AI, physical simulation, sound, …)

 

For a better impression about the simulation in action:

 

The robots are of course still placeholders for the real crew which should follow some time later :D Still not too good at modelling crew :S

 

Thanks in advance for your comments!

 

Working on 3D models for the naval sailing simulation "The Weather Gage"

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Welcome to MSW.

 

Looking pretty good from here.  If I may make a comment or two.. the bulwarks seem bit thin looking that gunport openings.  The other thing is the cannon smoke.  The smoke would go with the wind and not consistently move towards the stern.  It also seems that from the side views of the cannons firing, looking at the smoke the barrels would have to be pointed downwards towards the water.   Nothing serious there but that's what caught my eye.

Mark
"The shipwright is slow, but the wood is patient." - me

Current Build:                                                                                             
Past Builds:
 La Belle Poule 1765 - French Frigate from ANCRE plans                             Triton Cross-Section   

                                                                                                                       USS Constellaton (kit bashed to 1854 Sloop of War  _(Gallery) Build Log

                                                                                Wasa (Gallery)

                                                                                                                        HMS Sphinx 1775 - Vanguard Models - 1:64               

 

Non-Ship Model:                                                                                         On hold, maybe forever:           

CH-53 Sikorsky - 1:48 - Revell - Completed                                                   Licorne - 1755 from Hahn Plans (Scratch) Version 2.0 (Abandoned)         

         

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                

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  • 4 months later...
On 11/14/2019 at 5:27 AM, mtaylor said:

Welcome to MSW.

 

Looking pretty good from here.  If I may make a comment or two.. the bulwarks seem bit thin looking that gunport openings.  The other thing is the cannon smoke.  The smoke would go with the wind and not consistently move towards the stern.  It also seems that from the side views of the cannons firing, looking at the smoke the barrels would have to be pointed downwards towards the water.   Nothing serious there but that's what caught my eye.

Thanks for your welcome and your comments. I had not noticed too much that wind was not being affected by wind. I looked into it and added the influence of the wind on the smoke, hopefully it is noticeable in a future video. I think I have also to work a little bit on the randomness of the cannon smoke in the future (looking a lot of cannon smoke in slow-motion lately)
About your thin bulwarks comment, do you mean the bulwarks on the brig in the video or the bulwarks on the frigate in the pictures? Or both?

Working on 3D models for the naval sailing simulation "The Weather Gage"

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On 11/17/2019 at 6:16 PM, rshousha said:

The boom coming across the other deck; awesome! The gybes in perfect sync with the waves; wonderful! This is amazing work. Is it hard to add wake behind the boat? These heavy boats tend to leave a considerable wake in such seas. 

Thank you very much Rick for your compliments!
I've been looking on the topic boat wake because of your question. I could add a good wake at the sides but I still have to find a good way to achieve a believable wake behind the ship. As long as the ship is sailing in a straight line the wake behind it looks fine, but I still have no way to curve the wake when changing direction (right now the wake turns with the ship and the illusion is broken). I have sailed with several tall ships and I was always fascinated by the wake at the front and sides of the ships, but for some reason I looked not so much behind the ship for that rear wake :D

Below you can see an example of the subtle wake which I can simulate right now at the sides of the ship. This schooner game model is based on the plans for schooner Port Jackson.
1301618873_DesktopScreenshot2020_04.12-18_42.06_04.thumb.jpg.43ecf9a18cab32733f3b56d4255fb141.jpg

Working on 3D models for the naval sailing simulation "The Weather Gage"

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I've made some test for my Pegasus with water simulation, and wake behind the ship wasn't that much pronounced. can't remember the exact number right now, but I did some researching regarding sailing speed of the 6th rate sail ship and the number wasn't that high. I've entered the number into sim and... was mildly disappointed with the effect... oh well... 

cheers!

Denis

 

Current Build: HMS Pandora 3D modeling

                    Swan Class HMS Pegasus for Admiralty Models 3D Build

My other 3D work: Artstation

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  • 3 weeks later...
On 4/15/2020 at 8:37 PM, herask said:

I've made some test for my Pegasus with water simulation, and wake behind the ship wasn't that much pronounced. can't remember the exact number right now, but I did some researching regarding sailing speed of the 6th rate sail ship and the number wasn't that high. I've entered the number into sim and... was mildly disappointed with the effect... oh well... 

Thanks Denis for your feedback about the rear wake, I'll consider it. I'm curious, when you write about "number" do you mean something like speed or number of waves? Or do you mean something more fluid mechanics specific, like the Reynolds number?


Now I paused the work on ship models or simulation mechanics and started working on some models for the ship's crews. Until now I had only placeholder models for the crew (i.e. robots, if somebody looks at the video). Now the illusion of being on a ship is much better than before with a placeholder crew :) These are my first attempts with human models, therefore a lot of improvement will still be necessary. See below a royal navy lieutenant and seaman around 1800.2098878789_DesktopScreenshot2020_05.03-21_11_59_43.jpg.320f702e088f0734168244969c906cdf.jpg

Working on 3D models for the naval sailing simulation "The Weather Gage"

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This is WAYYYYYY out of my understanding to offer you any suggestions. But it looks great with amazing potential. Howling did it take to get to this point of development...Moab

Completed Builds:

Virginia Armed Sloop...Model Shipways

Ranger...Corel

Louise Steam Launch...Constructo

Hansa Kogge...Dusek

Yankee Hero...BlueJacket

Spray...BlueJacket

26’ Long Boat...Model Shipways

Under Construction:

Emma C. Berry...Model Shipways

 

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On 5/3/2020 at 10:31 PM, Aidedecamp said:

Thanks Denis for your feedback about the rear wake, I'll consider it. I'm curious, when you write about "number" do you mean something like speed or number of waves? Or do you mean something more fluid mechanics specific, like the Reynolds number?

I meant speed in knots. can't remember the exact number anymore, unfortunately... 

cheers!

Denis

 

Current Build: HMS Pandora 3D modeling

                    Swan Class HMS Pegasus for Admiralty Models 3D Build

My other 3D work: Artstation

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  • 3 weeks later...
On 5/3/2020 at 10:47 PM, Moab said:

This is WAYYYYYY out of my understanding to offer you any suggestions. But it looks great with amazing potential. Howling did it take to get to this point of development...Moab

Thanks for your comment Moab! I started in 2015 with a basic prototype and took me 2-3 years to learn the tools for modeling, texturing, animating, … and figuring out some solutions for the simulation. So really productive are only the 2-3 last years.

 

While checking when I started this project I realized the video I posted last time is already more than 2 years old, so I thought I can show a newer one showing some of the latest updates.
You can see my 9pdr frigate based on HMS Surprise in moving action and the new marine models shooting from the tops to the enemy seaman below :) 

 

 

Working on 3D models for the naval sailing simulation "The Weather Gage"

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  • 2 months later...

Now I'm working on the textures for one of my frigates and I'm assuming that the interior of the quarter galleries would be painted in white (as it's the case with most other interiors) even the side of the hull within the gallery. To check this assumption I have been looking many of the paintings that I use as a reference, but I realize that in all cases the glass of the quarter galleries is painted simply blue i.e. not showing the color of the quarter gallerie's interior. Could anybody confirm this assumption or correct it ? Thanks in adavance.

 

To give also some update, here a size comparison of the currently working ship models:image.png.66fb4e10590f8b799cbf95bf292f4a40.png

From left to right:

- 74-gun ship of the line

- 18pdr frigate

- 9pdr frigate

- Brig

- Barque

- Cutter

- Lugger

- Smack

- Tartane

- Small merchant schooner

- Gunboat (single cannon)

- 18ft yawl

 

When I start a model I find somehow fascinating to be able to compare directly the different ships (before I had only plans with different scales) and get an impression of the relative sizes. 

Working on 3D models for the naval sailing simulation "The Weather Gage"

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  • 2 months later...

Currently I'm working on my 18 pdr frigate model, which is based on the french frigate Venus (plans from Ancre). I chose this particular frigate not only because of the detailed plans available, but also because it belongs to the french Hebé class of frigates, which was copied and further developed in both french and british navies (as Leda class in the Royal Navy). In this way I hope that this model can represent many frigates which were really serving in both navies during the simulation period (1792 - 1815).
Anyway, I was modelling the shrouds of this ship as I have been doing for previous models (HMS Surprise, HMS Cruizer, Cutter Alert, ...) with the shroud's ends facing forward (i.e. almost routine, see picture below). However then Venus' plan shows the shroud's ends facing backwards, what I noticed luckily after modelling only 4 shrouds. Does anybody know if this different shroud's setting depend from the nation? (i.e. France backwards, Britain forwards). What about other nations? I assume I had modelled the shrouds always in the same way since most of my models were based on british plans or I was consulting british books (e.g. Darcy Lever - Young Sea Officer's Sheet Anchor)

ShroudVenus.thumb.JPG.c9d8da4a804cb24946938238721a6d2c.JPG

 

Lately the ship's modelling was a bit slower since I concentrated on other aspects of the simulation, like generating the coast terrain and adding ports. Below you can see the example of the french port of Toulon and the same Venus frigate model (without shrouds) at the entrance. The 2 ships in the port facilities are 2 other WIPs.

 

829726493_DesktopScreenshot2020_11.09-22_08_45_69.thumb.png.20be7df519e25e6047c12e347e9bf046.png

 

 

Working on 3D models for the naval sailing simulation "The Weather Gage"

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I'd just go with the ANCRE plans since they are well researched.  The ANCRE plans for Belle Poule also show them as "aft".  

Mark
"The shipwright is slow, but the wood is patient." - me

Current Build:                                                                                             
Past Builds:
 La Belle Poule 1765 - French Frigate from ANCRE plans                             Triton Cross-Section   

                                                                                                                       USS Constellaton (kit bashed to 1854 Sloop of War  _(Gallery) Build Log

                                                                                Wasa (Gallery)

                                                                                                                        HMS Sphinx 1775 - Vanguard Models - 1:64               

 

Non-Ship Model:                                                                                         On hold, maybe forever:           

CH-53 Sikorsky - 1:48 - Revell - Completed                                                   Licorne - 1755 from Hahn Plans (Scratch) Version 2.0 (Abandoned)         

         

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                

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On 11/10/2020 at 12:04 AM, mtaylor said:

I'd just go with the ANCRE plans since they are well researched.  The ANCRE plans for Belle Poule also show them as "aft".  

Thanks, I agree on the quality of the plans and I'm doing it in this way. I saw the same on the plans of Commerce the Marseille, so I'll keep shroud's ends aft for models based on french ships and keep them forward fo the models based on british ships, since this difference seems to depend on nationality.  

Working on 3D models for the naval sailing simulation "The Weather Gage"

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  • 1 year later...

This project is still going on, lately with less focus on ship modeling and more on other aspects like simulation mechanics (e.g. use of boats) or modeling of buildings and characters
Recently I wanted to show somebody the 3D models , so I developed a feature to see the models outside of the sailings simulation. I call this feature "the museum" since it displays several models (which are shown in 1:1 scale in my original simulation) as scale models in a virtual museum. It's possible to move the camera all around the model, zoom into details or even move the camera into the model (much more options than looking at real models behind glass in a real museum). The program should  run on any decent computer with a graphics card and windows (i.e. no special viewer or 3d editor are necessary ).
Here is the link to the program if anybody wants to take a look and give some feedback: 

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1DbcINDr9eUVOFzdudRb64tGeuRXngyND/view?usp=sharing


Below you can see some pictures showing how you can see the models directly in the program
For the instructions on how to move the camera or to exit the program, simply press the "Esc" key only the first model is visible.

 

image.thumb.jpeg.68bc41b57e3d1dbd46af01465a8a686b.jpeg

image.thumb.jpeg.6285ed646c9202e46232594837b7690a.jpeg

image.thumb.jpeg.f6510a293d409ae44158ad42873ab966.jpeg

 

Working on 3D models for the naval sailing simulation "The Weather Gage"

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  • 8 months later...

Lately the focus of this project has been the development of more efficient ways to model ships. Such a simulation needs some variety of models (it's boring to meet always the same ship models) and this means having a faster development pipeline. I was already reusing many common parts (e.g. anchors, spars, steering wheels, ...) but some other parts other ship need to be always slightly different and appear often in the models, so methods to adapt this parts easily were necessary.

 

Below some block combinations, rigged with hooks and object constraints. By moving the hooks to the proper attachment positions the ropes are automatically stretched and the UVs recalculated to make the textures look right. The blocks are rotated by the constraints to look in the proper direction. The blocks looks strange in this picture, since several possible attachment options are included: metal hooks, rings, ropes, ... the meshes not needed are simply deleted and the proper attachment is kept.

image.jpeg.46562f6ee5692929113dafe5e90e5444.jpeg

Gratings are another example of components that vary slightly in the dimensions but have common structure. In this case the grating can be generated procedurally via geometry nodes (a blender feature to create meshes with algorithms). Width, length, depth, ... can be introduced (see menu at the right) and the part is generated instantly, so all the variations needed for a ship can be created in few minutes. UVs are also generated automatically, so only placing and cutting the decks is necessary

 

image.thumb.jpeg.49ed0fb0a120b72abf23172914007b94.jpeg

Similar example with stairs, height, width and depth must be usually adapted, also via mask

 

image.jpeg.f4707cf975d86dcb6fd33b69b5e5faf9.jpeg

Below an example of several gratings of different sizes used on a deck and the stairs on the left.

image.thumb.jpeg.d3d7d11b24e465c5dad281d8142a12c7.jpeg

 

Working on 3D models for the naval sailing simulation "The Weather Gage"

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