Travel to Cyrodiil
please can all the team look in "the plan" and comment on relevant topics.

Greetings from Beyond Skyrim, the Province Mod Collaboration Wiki

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Greetings from Beyond Skyrim, the Province Mod Collaboration Wiki

Post  Deeza on Thu Dec 01, 2011 12:00 pm

Hello, everyone!

I am one of the admins at the Beyond Skyrim Wiki, which was created to facilitate collaboration between worldspace mods for Skyrim.

I can see that you've posted a project page, which is great, and I hope it is only the start of your involvement with the site.

Now, it has come to my attention that there are several other Cyrodiil project teams out there, and it seems to me that the best way forward would be for you to try to join up with them. Have you had any luck in this respect?

I was also wondering if you could provide a few more details about how you envisage going about this mod. Are you going to go one region at a time, and do episodic releases?

Are you planning to do it in a separate worldspace or as an extension of Skyrim?

Regards,

Deeza

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Re: Greetings from Beyond Skyrim, the Province Mod Collaboration Wiki

Post  Hashcat on Fri Dec 02, 2011 6:10 am

Hey there,

I think you should talk to Earendel from The Nirn Project, your ideas seem similar and perhaps working together whilst working on different aspects would improve the efficiency of the project as a whole.
As for releases, our current plan is to bring out a proof of concept release as soon as possible, this would most likely contain the area from Skyrim to Bruma and I think Bruma itself would be in Alpha or Beta state. I for one support this idea, it will get the mod some publicity, which in turn will provide feedback and perhaps even new team members. I am fairly sure that eventually Cyrodiil will be in the same worldspace as Skyrim, but it might be smart to start it out in it's own worldspace, so we can worry about borders later and completely focus on the area from Skyrim to Bruma. I think this will also make it more playable early on.

I was also wondering if you could post links to the threads/forums of the other Cyrodiil projects as I haven't seen any other Cyrodiil project yet and am interested in their take on it.
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Re: Greetings from Beyond Skyrim, the Province Mod Collaboration Wiki

Post  deamonata on Fri Dec 02, 2011 9:45 am

Deeza wrote:Hello, everyone!

I am one of the admins at the Beyond Skyrim Wiki, which was created to facilitate collaboration between worldspace mods for Skyrim.

I can see that you've posted a project page, which is great, and I hope it is only the start of your involvement with the site.

Now, it has come to my attention that there are several other Cyrodiil project teams out there, and it seems to me that the best way forward would be for you to try to join up with them. Have you had any luck in this respect?

I have spoken to a few but not received many responses instead seen as many will fail if by that point we are running smoothly we will then be in a good position to invite any remaining team members to join with us and share any work

Deeza wrote:
I was also wondering if you could provide a few more details about how you envisage going about this mod. Are you going to go one region at a time, and do episodic releases?

We intend to build outwards releasing each section as it is finished (excluding quests) and as each section is finished we will then add in side quests and we a significant portion so work on a main quest will begin. (this is subject to change however, but this is the current plan)

Deeza wrote:
Are you planning to do it in a separate worldspace or as an extension of Skyrim?

We intend to release as a separate worldspace this is for several reasons

1. so that the main outdoors will so as cyrodiil and not skyrim (small thing but helps immersion)
2. It wont make much difference as the are only two passes through the unscalable jerral mountains so little inconvinence will be caused
3. it will also aid with scaling with other mods if they all do something similar (that is suitable for the terrain at the borders)

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Re: Greetings from Beyond Skyrim, the Province Mod Collaboration Wiki

Post  Deeza on Fri Dec 02, 2011 12:15 pm

Hello to both of you!

First of all can I say that you have absolutely the right attitude. I've been around a few province mods in my time, and focusing on a small, dedicated area with clearly achievable goals is 100% the way to go.

With regards to the worldspace, I think that those arguments are valid. I had originally intended to do the same for my own mod. However, following the discussion on the thread on Bethsoft Forums:

(it seems I cannot post external links for some reason. Something to do with the forum settings?)

It seems that there is a possibility of using a shared heightmap, which I think is something we should all consider even if we don't end up choosing it in the end. One possibility is that each team working on an area of each province could work off the same base map and then ultimately merge them to produce a single seamless world.

Whether this is possible or not will depend on technical issues once the CK is released and we get a good look at it, I just wanted to keep you guys up to speed.

The other mods working on Cyrodiil:

- as you said, most of them haven't responded to my emails, as I have been trying to get in touch with them too. The one person you should really talk to is zackg, who was last working on this mod for TES3: (provincecyrodiil dot com) and now wants to mod Cyrodiil for TES5.

- he no doubt has his own plans for Cyrodiil, but that is all the more reason why you should get together now and try to work out a common plan, so we don't end up with the duplication of projects we saw for TES4


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Re: Greetings from Beyond Skyrim, the Province Mod Collaboration Wiki

Post  Earendel on Sat Dec 03, 2011 5:44 am

Hi Deeza, I'm joining Beyond Skyrim as I type this. I hope we can work together because it seems like our goals are the same.

I agree about using a unified heightmap. There's no substitute for being able to move around all of Tamriel seamlessly.

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Re: Greetings from Beyond Skyrim, the Province Mod Collaboration Wiki

Post  deamonata on Sat Dec 03, 2011 9:12 pm

I'm still not convinved that having a unified heightmap would really help all that much, we will have several issues including:
[list][*]the map, if it is a separate worldspace it is easier to change the map when you pass in to the new world space.
[*] The name of the area, if it is all one world space everywhere will be shown as skyrim
[*] scaling if we do it as the same world space we have to be very careful about scaling and making sure borders are in the right place, how ever in separate world spaces the borders can be where ever as they are just "doors"

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Re: Greetings from Beyond Skyrim, the Province Mod Collaboration Wiki

Post  Hashcat on Sun Dec 04, 2011 1:16 am

I'm still not convinved that having a unified heightmap would really help all that much, we will have several issues including:
  • the map, if it is a separate worldspace it is easier to change the map when you pass in to the new world space.
  • The name of the area, if it is all one world space everywhere will be shown as skyrim
  • scaling if we do it as the same world space we have to be very careful about scaling and making sure borders are in the right place, how ever in separate world spaces the borders can be where ever as they are just "doors"

If we change the name from Skyrim to Tamriel or Nirn it would be fixed. The issue I see with doors is while they may work with the Skyrim-Cyrodiil border because there are only passes leading towards each other, with other provinces it might not work that way as you would have to assign either a lot of doors or make very big doors, which are both very impractical and don't work seamlessly. Like Earendel said: There is no substitute for an unified heightmap/worldspace when it comes to seamlessness, and the best way to do that is early on, even if other projects die out it will leave something workable for other people to pick up.


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Re: Greetings from Beyond Skyrim, the Province Mod Collaboration Wiki

Post  deamonata on Sun Dec 04, 2011 1:54 am

As most of the provinces have left the empire is it impractical to think they might be restricting access to only a few roads there by allowing doors? not sure how they would be restricting access maybe wooden wall? however I'm sure there would be something

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Re: Greetings from Beyond Skyrim, the Province Mod Collaboration Wiki

Post  Diabolickal on Sun Dec 04, 2011 5:12 am

We're also unsure of how well a unified heightmap will make skyrim run. Remember the open cities mod for Oblivion? The mod made all the cities within the worldspace of Cyrodiil and not their own worldspace. Those who didn't have a higher end computer lagged. So I can only imagine if we add an entire province onto skyrim how that will effect it. Not to mention the ridiculous load time it would have every time you walk out of a city or cave and out to cyrodiil/skyrim because of it nearly doubled size. Putting Cyrodiil in its own worldspace is the clean and efficient way to do it.

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Re: Greetings from Beyond Skyrim, the Province Mod Collaboration Wiki

Post  Hashcat on Sun Dec 04, 2011 2:19 pm

We're also unsure of how well a unified heightmap will make skyrim run. Remember the open cities mod for Oblivion? The mod made all the cities within the worldspace of Cyrodiil and not their own worldspace. Those who didn't have a higher end computer lagged. So I can only imagine if we add an entire province onto skyrim how that will effect it. Not to mention the ridiculous load time it would have every time you walk out of a city or cave and out to cyrodiil/skyrim because of it nearly doubled size. Putting Cyrodiil in its own worldspace is the clean and efficient way to do it.

I'm pretty sure Open Cities would've given me a noticeable decrease in fps, however with the whole of Tamriel in my game I did not notice anything, I think this is because it doesn't load the whole worldspace at once but just the cell your in and those around it, just like the Construction Set loads cell by cell. Because of this you probably wouldn't notice a significant increase, if one at all, in loading time, I do not know this for sure though, I'll see about trying to get Oblivion with the whole of Tamriel working again to see if I can find out some more.
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Re: Greetings from Beyond Skyrim, the Province Mod Collaboration Wiki

Post  Diabolickal on Sun Dec 04, 2011 6:37 pm

well there is a prerequisite to the loading of the cells im sure, some sort of cache or something, it cant load an entire detailed cell from nothing on the spot like that. I'm almost certain skyrim's worldspace is loaded at least partially in its entirety and then loads the detailed cell as needed on demand. Adding an entirely new province would most definitely effect the loading times. But regardless, i think we've decided on a separate worldspace, its so much cleaner to do it that way. And if we do it that way, we can add into skyrim's currently existing LOD of Cyrodiil and add cities and larger landmarks so if the player is high enough he could see an LOD of our new cyrodiil.

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Re: Greetings from Beyond Skyrim, the Province Mod Collaboration Wiki

Post  Deeza on Wed Dec 07, 2011 8:38 pm

If you are interested, our heightmap is being discussed here:

http://www.darkcreations.org/forums/topic/806-common-worldspace-heightmap/

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Re: Greetings from Beyond Skyrim, the Province Mod Collaboration Wiki

Post  Hashcat on Mon Dec 12, 2011 7:41 am

well there is a prerequisite to the loading of the cells im sure, some sort of cache or something, it cant load an entire detailed cell from nothing on the spot like that. I'm almost certain skyrim's worldspace is loaded at least partially in its entirety and then loads the detailed cell as needed on demand. Adding an entirely new province would most definitely effect the loading times. But regardless, i think we've decided on a separate worldspace, its so much cleaner to do it that way.

The only loading time that would increase then is the initial loading time you get when you load your first game after start up, or the pre-menu loading time(see bottom of the post for more clarification about what I actually mean by this) after that it should be cached, in Oblivion it pre-loads every .esm and .esp before even taking you to the main screen, Skyrim will most certainly do this too, furthermore, Skyrim already contains LODs for most of Cyrodiil and the other provinces, and since it loads LODs before it loads actual terrain, it's unlikely that there would be any decrease in performance or increase in loading times whatsoever except for the initial loading time.

How exactly would a separate worldspace be cleaner? I don't see how it changes anything besides closing up possibilities and adding additional loading screens and barriers, and even if it is, an unified worldspace is the quality and more immersive choice. Anyhow, this is a very, very, very big decision(at least to me and I can picture to a lot more people too), and before an actual decision is made I think it's important to let some more experienced people give their opinion about it and at the same time let them clarify some things, I've seen the topic on heightmaps on the Dark Creations forum and I think it's safe to say they have more experience regarding heightmaps then most(if not all) of us, in fact working together with them might (and most likely will) actually improve our work.

As most of the provinces have left the empire is it impractical to think they might be restricting access to only a few roads there by allowing doors? not sure how they would be restricting access maybe wooden wall? however I'm sure there would be something

Nope, not at all, I think you could be very much correct about this, although if the empire were to put up walls along every border you'd end up wit something similar to the Great Wall of China, possibly even bigger(Lore wise), and that would be pretty much impossible/impractical itself. I think border patrols and stations on the borders much more likely and if in the end there will be chosen for a separate worldspace invisible walls are the way to go.

On a side note, I got Oblivion running with Onra's Heightmap again, and as I suspected there was only an increase in the initial pre-menu loading screen loading time, it loaded the actual save as quickly as normal, I think Skyrim does this too as it pretty much just an updated version of the engine and I noticed it takes a while for the main menu to load and thus I think that is the new pre-menu loading screen, they just took away the loading bar(or I'm just blind and missed the actual .esm and .esp loading bar).

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Re: Greetings from Beyond Skyrim, the Province Mod Collaboration Wiki

Post  Diabolickal on Mon Dec 12, 2011 8:20 am

I still believe we should have cyrodiil in its own worldspace. It would just make everything easier. We would have to turn off borders to allow access, which would turn off borders everywhere allowing the possibility of player going to the places and directions Bethesda blocked us from. A separate worldspace was the idea from the beginning, then the news of the existing lands arose, I payed a visit to these and announced them unusable. A unified heightmap woiuld require us to edit or remove the LODs of the other provinces, creating more work for us. A separate worldspace would allow a clean, fresh start, and allow us to add onto the the existing LODs and add slightly more detail and landmarks.

And quite frankly, no one has more experience than anyone right now. Skyrim is a different engine, the Construction Kit isn't even out yet, so its false to say that anyone has more experience than anyone. I've been messing with the Construction Kit since way back, with oblivion, and I can't even say that I'm going to be skilled with this one.

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Re: Greetings from Beyond Skyrim, the Province Mod Collaboration Wiki

Post  Sporkfortuna on Mon Dec 12, 2011 3:57 pm

I'd like to correct that the border regions will most likely be easily editable in the Construction Kit, and we wouldn't need to turn them off.

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Re: Greetings from Beyond Skyrim, the Province Mod Collaboration Wiki

Post  Diabolickal on Tue Dec 13, 2011 9:10 am

OK if thats so, that leaves us with editing/removing the LOD's of the existing lands and then unifying it. And if we are just doing Bruma and Cloud Ruler Temple, a separate worldspace is what we need, why make 90% of cyrodiil if all we are releasing just those 2 as a proof of concept

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Re: Greetings from Beyond Skyrim, the Province Mod Collaboration Wiki

Post  Sporkfortuna on Tue Dec 13, 2011 1:27 pm

From a heightmap point of view, it would be easier for me to generate it all at once.

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Re: Greetings from Beyond Skyrim, the Province Mod Collaboration Wiki

Post  Hashcat on Wed Dec 14, 2011 6:32 am

And quite frankly, no one has more experience than anyone right now. Skyrim is a different engine, the Construction Kit isn't even out yet, so its false to say that anyone has more experience than anyone.
Skyrim does not use a different engine, just an improved version of the original, also when talking about heightmaps my statement is in fact correct, just like for example level design or modelling, heightmap editing is not an engine specific skill, I could take software that was used for creating heightmaps in TES:IV mods and create a heightmap for Battlefield 2 for example and besides, I can't think of a reason why Bethesda would so drastically change the way heightmaps work that the past experience of the people I'm talking about would be rendered useless. Of course, some heightmap editing experience might be useless when taking it to a different engine, but this is not a different engine and never all of it, at least not in most cases.

A separate worldspace would allow a clean, fresh start, and allow us to add onto the the existing LODs and add slightly more detail and landmarks.
How would there be a difference in detail?

OK if thats so, that leaves us with editing/removing the LOD's of the existing lands and then unifying it. And if we are just doing Bruma and Cloud Ruler Temple, a separate worldspace is what we need, why make 90% of cyrodiil if all we are releasing just those 2 as a proof of concept
If it would be done in a separate worldspace, wouldn't we have to copy part of the Jerral Mountains anyway? and what about Skyrim's LOD, wouldn't that have to be copied too? If it's a clean and fresh start your worried about, why not start out in a separate worldspace and gradually work(or have some willing people work) on getting it in to the main worldspace?

From a heightmap point of view, it would be easier for me to generate it all at once.
I've been wondering, is this because if you wouldn't you would end up with a lot of places that aren't in scale with the rest of Cyrodiil? And/or what else would make it easier to do it all at once?

Something else I would like to bring to your attention, the very same people at DC forums are working on getting the correct scale of Tamriel in relation to TES:IV, this scale(somewhere between 118% and 135% I believe) is basically how much bigger the whole of Tamriel has gotten, separate worldspace or not, I suggest we use the same scale as it saves us a lot work, is lore correct and of course would make compatibility less of an issue without any real collaboration. To be honest, I see no reason not to use this scale once it has been determined.
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Re: Greetings from Beyond Skyrim, the Province Mod Collaboration Wiki

Post  Diabolickal on Wed Dec 14, 2011 1:44 pm

If it was a separate would space, would could have it any scale we want. And I meant adding more detail to the already existing LODs of Cyrodill. Separate worldspace was the idea from the beginning anyways, why change it?

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Re: Greetings from Beyond Skyrim, the Province Mod Collaboration Wiki

Post  Luffi45 on Sun Jan 08, 2012 6:38 am

Even if we end up doing a seperate worldspace, the unified heightmap will ensure proper scaling, border compatability with other mods, and it will give us ALL something to help convert into the next Elder scrolls game when it is released.

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Re: Greetings from Beyond Skyrim, the Province Mod Collaboration Wiki

Post  Diabolickal on Thu Jan 12, 2012 2:28 pm

If we do a separate worldspace, there would be no need to worry about borders and let our creativity have literally no bounds. If it's unified we have to worry about how well we are match up with skyrim's borders (perfectly) rather than artistically correct.

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Heightmap Update

Post  Deeza on Mon Jan 16, 2012 2:45 am

Just to give you an update on the current status of the Beyond Skyrim heightmap over at DC:

http://www.darkcreations.org/forums/topic/806-common-worldspace-heightmap/page__pid__84999__st__120#entry84999

We have now reconstructed the landscape of Cyrodiil from the LOD files of TES4. It will require integration with the other heightmaps we have made and collected, but the complete heightmap for Tamriel should be finished sooner rather than later.


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Re: Greetings from Beyond Skyrim, the Province Mod Collaboration Wiki

Post  AiSqueem on Wed Jan 18, 2012 1:42 pm

My main problem with a unified height map would be clipping issues. If we set it to no clipping, the mod would let players walk off the world ANYWHERE in Skyrim, but I am not familiar with what we can and cannot do with the CK so this might be moot.

The great thing about the Bethesda engine is that it only loads cells at a time, instead of rendering the entire world. The problem that the open city mod had was that it was cramming too many POLYGONS into on cell. If we keep the polygons to roughly the same size as they do in Skyrim, I don't see a problem with the unified height map.

It would give proper scaling and we don't have to worry about completely synching it up with the mountains. We can build a false peak that doesn't connect to the existing silhouette, but would look as if it was a part of the range if looked at from far away. Basically, unless you glitched your way up there or consoled yourself in to free camera mode, you would never know if this.
Also I think I remember them having completely built the mountains and then it would only be a question of glueing this heightmap to the base of the mountains Cyrodiil side? Environments could be construct to hide the 'seam'.

Also, please call me out if I don't know what I am talking about.
I just find it silly if we DON'T collaborate on this, seeing as so much work has been done already. There is no reason for us to throw it away.

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Re: Greetings from Beyond Skyrim, the Province Mod Collaboration Wiki

Post  SquadTrooper on Thu Jan 19, 2012 3:07 am

Wouldn't a unified worldspace also cause LOD issues/complications?
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Re: Greetings from Beyond Skyrim, the Province Mod Collaboration Wiki

Post  Hashcat on Thu Jan 19, 2012 11:59 am

Deeza wrote:Just to give you an update on the current status of the Beyond Skyrim heightmap over at DC:

http://www.darkcreations.org/forums/topic/806-common-worldspace-heightmap/page__pid__84999__st__120#entry84999

We have now reconstructed the landscape of Cyrodiil from the LOD files of TES4. It will require integration with the other heightmaps we have made and collected, but the complete heightmap for Tamriel should be finished sooner rather than later.

The mountain range on the side of Cyrodiil looks way too steep to be used, and the Imperial Isle looks like a piece of land with a river around it, not an isle in a lake imo. A piece of dry land was also created to the north-west of The Imperial City. Other then that I think it looks quite good.

AiSqueem wrote:My main problem with a unified height map would be clipping issues. If we set it to no clipping, the mod would let players walk off the world ANYWHERE in Skyrim, but I am not familiar with what we can and cannot do with the CK so this might be moot.

The great thing about the Bethesda engine is that it only loads cells at a time, instead of rendering the entire world. The problem that the open city mod had was that it was cramming too many POLYGONS into on cell. If we keep the polygons to roughly the same size as they do in Skyrim, I don't see a problem with the unified height map.

It would give proper scaling and we don't have to worry about completely synching it up with the mountains. We can build a false peak that doesn't connect to the existing silhouette, but would look as if it was a part of the range if looked at from far away. Basically, unless you glitched your way up there or consoled yourself in to free camera mode, you would never know if this.
Also I think I remember them having completely built the mountains and then it would only be a question of glueing this heightmap to the base of the mountains Cyrodiil side? Environments could be construct to hide the 'seam'.

Also, please call me out if I don't know what I am talking about.
I just find it silly if we DON'T collaborate on this, seeing as so much work has been done already. There is no reason for us to throw it away.

If I would be creating completely new region in it's own cell-space it would make sense to me that I can set borders for it, I also read that it would be possible to edit borders somewhere, and even if borders would have to be disabled, if players use a bit of common sense they won't get in trouble and if the unified heightmap will eventually have the whole of Tamriel in it you would only be able to swim off into a random direction, if you would actually have a reason to do that I'd imagine not being able to do so would be quite frustrating.

SquadTrooper wrote:Wouldn't a unified worldspace also cause LOD issues/complications?
I'd imagine only less, since you'd have one file for all of Tamriel.

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Re: Greetings from Beyond Skyrim, the Province Mod Collaboration Wiki

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