The rendering engine has been improved again to give us control of the range in which water rendering is updated. Another one of those "big steps" towards infinite!
For now we're using a basic "fog" to simply stop drawing chunks in the distance to improve performance, but this is only a stand-in.
FOG IT UP
Press "F" to cycle through the different fog ranges. For now, this is an easy way to vastly improve the framerate in the larger courses.
We've also got a good idea on how to do a volumetric fog shader separately for the water. This wouldn't gain any performance or anything, but it'll look cool... and help to see the depth of the water better.
We didn't have time to implement new tools (the requested top priority "fun" feature) but we did go over which tools we'll add and how the interface would change to accommodate them.
Redoing the interface for tools could take some time if we were to implement it 'fully', so we might do something a little more ad hoc in the meantime.
We've added some more direct error messages for when a dependency is missing. This should help to diagnose why Liquid Cubed is crashing on startup for some people.
In addition, springs now create water above themselves, sponges no longer remove the wrong blocks nearby, and pumps can absorb water from springs that are directly adjacent.
Also, thanks goes to JRose for detecting and demonstrating a little "infinite water" bug we had with our pumps. His screenshots were spot-on and allowed us to rapidly resolve this issue. =D
Our focus is on improving the performance of the liquids -- not recreating Minecraft -- but there's still plenty of fun things we can add to Liquid Cubed.
Last time "more tools" were requested to be the top of the priority list, but we ran out of time before it could be implemented. The priority list was arranged in the following order:
A. More tools: (line, fill, rectangle, etc)
B. Improved liquid polygons: (smoother edges, dissolving particles, variable width waterfalls, etc)
C. HD visuals (specular & normal mapping, water reflection, distortion maps)
D. Re-designed interface/controls + higher resolution
E. Perlin noise terrain generation
F. More blocks available (different colors, objects, etc)
G. Critters for the fluids (fish, sharks, crabs, ducks, etc)
H. walking/swimming/collision mode (Ability to switch between free flight and walking/swimming)
How would you arrange the priority list for "fun" features for Liquid Cubed?