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Body Morphing Questions / Suggestions


#1

I love playing with the body morphing in this game!

But there are a few morphing ‘categories’ that I feel are very powerful and transformative to the way a car looks, and was wondering whether they might be included; or whether it’s all pretty much set in stone.

Perhaps somebody can tell me whether these morphs will be possible on Steam Workshop content?

  1. shoulder line

So I’d love to be able to raise or lower the shoulder line / window line of the cars I design. A simple range of higher or lower, which also affects the bonnet height and boot height would be great.

For bonus points, the ability to set a different height at the front and back of the car would be very cool to get the rising shoulder line of '90s SEATs and Maseratis.

  1. Roof height

Pretty self explanatory - I enjoy being able to change the angle and position of the windscreen, but I sometimes wish I could raise or lower the roof line of the cars I design. I think this one could feed nicely into car stats - lower for higher sportiness and prestige, and a smaller frontal area; higher for more practicality and driveability (for the increased visibility).

  1. Width

I noticed on a few models that broadening the arches makes the whole side of the car wider, and I like this a lot. Will we see this on more models? Or are they pretty much locked down now?

Making a car wider might be easier than increasing or decreasing the wheelbase, since the simulated already accounts for various front and rear track widths, and a 1D scale operation in that orientation won’t ruin the roundness of wheelarches etc.

Besides those, I noticed there are some models which are almost endlessly adjustable (some of the squarer sedan and coupe styles) and some which are much less so, or leave meshing artifacts on adjoining panels.

I know a lot of this is to do with the style of the cars - so it will naturally be easier to manipulate the mesh of a squarer car than a rounded supermini. But there are still squarer cars that I would like more morphing options on, like the CRX and Lotus Esprit shapes.

Will the models be overhauled and brought up to the level of the most manipulable models, or will we have to wait for Workshop content?

Cheers!


#2

Hi,
There are a number of factors that need to be considered when designing the morphs for each model, both technical and creative.

On the technical side. The morphs work by attaching each of your target vertices to a “Bone” and is weighted to determine how much effect that bone has on the vertex. This is used to drag the morph about. We are restricted to 4 bones per vertex, including a “Bone Root” which, in effect, anchors things in place, so reducing us to 3 to use as we please.

This means we need to be selective with our morphs, for example the recent 60sSedan04 body’s front end has morphs for
The central point of the front fascia
The indented part of the front fascia
The length of the bonnet
The Bone Root
Meaning that many of the vertices in that area would not have room for additional bones, leading to undesired results where certain vertices will ignore some of the bones.

Also as you add more morphs to the model, the more complex it becomes. No morph is added in isolation to itself. Any morphing zone which overlaps another will affect any previous morphing set up for that zone.
Each vertex is weighted on a scale of 0 to 1 and that scale is shared between all bones.
e.g. a “fresh” vertex will be weighted to the root at a value of 1
add a new morph and set the weight to .5, then the root will be reduced to .5 also - the sum equalling 1
add a 2nd new morph andset the weight also to .5 then the root and morph 1 will be reduced to .25 each, again retaining the sum of 1 for all bones. This is a very complex balancing act.

Creatively - it’s down to what each author of a body think looks good, obviously we want to create as dynamic a morph set as possible, taking into the technical restrictions.
As you mention, some bodies morph their whole side when moving the wheel arches, we also have somewith adjustable rooflines (mostly cargo variants) and at least one (the aforementioned 60sSedan04) has a bit of a shoulder line morph above the rear wheel arch which allows for a more pronounced coke bottle hip.

As for model overhauls, I personally do look at existing models and make notes of where they can be improved, however this takes time from adding new content and so long as existing content is not detrimentally flawed it is not a priority at this time.

TL:DR - we do try do accommodate these where creatively and technically possible and we may revamp older models…


#3

Thanks for such a detailed reply! I will have to do some homework to look into bones and bone roots, but it is all very interesting.

Cheers!