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Forget fancy skyboxes, embrace Nifty Nebulae. ABOUT Nifty nebula is my first actual mod for KSP. I have been messing with shaders for a while now, volumetrics in particular. Then I had the idea of implementing these shaders in KSP using a plugin. Nifty Nebulae makes it possible to have actual 3d volumetric nebulae in game, with different views no matter where you are in or around the nebula. The mod requires a decent graphics card, if you are able to run Scatterer it should be able to run this too. These are a few screenshots (more can be found on the GitHub wiki): DOWNLOAD In order for the mod to work, configuration packs are required, these can either be from a planet pack or one of the sample two on the releases page. Currently known to work on KSP 1.12.x-1.10.x GitHub Download Nifty Nebulae is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License. (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0) FOR PLANET PACK CREATORS/HELP AND BUGS Planet pack creators can make their own custom textures and configs for Nifty Nebulae. Information on how to do so can be found on the GitHub page on the wiki. Keep in mind, creating textures is currently pretty difficult due to the 3d nature of them, a tool for this is currently being worked on. As for bugs and other gameplay related issues and questions, these can be reported on the github too on the issues page. Feel free to message me on discord too RJVB09#4200. Note that the mod has performance settings in the NiftyNebulaeGlobals.cfg file in the mod folder itself. You can tweak these values to make it run better. Instructions of which can be found on the wiki too WIKI Have fun playing!
Nestled between the gorgeous Flame Nebula and the intimidating Horsehead, is the home planet of the Kerbals. They are a peace loving people, and having just become a space-faring civilization, little do they know that roughly 1200 light years from their beautiful planet Kerbin, lies the home planet of the war mongering species of Man, called Earth. At such a relatively close distance, it’s only a matter of time until the two civilizations come into contact with each other. Can the peace loving Kerbals hold their own when the corporate might of Mankind come knocking with their galactic-class mining ships? The Kerbals have, at least, 1200 years to prepare for that eventuality. For now however, they are happy to look up at the night sky and wonder, “Where the kell did Jebediah hide the Horse’s body?" DOWNLOAD You MUST download TextureReplacer Replaced, if you haven’t already. Download the skybox from SpaceDock or CurseForge. Unpack the ZIP archive and place the GameData folder into your KSP install directory, replacing the original. TECHNICAL INFO The skybox was captured using SpaceEngine 0.9.8. Later, I used 'real' images of the individual objects, from various sources (see full list below), to add more detail. How did I choose which objects to make visible and which ones to ignore? I increased SpaceEngine’s magnitude limit to the 8th (from the default of 7th) and exported the skybox at 4096px resolution. I kept the objects which were visible in the exported images. For example, even though the Eagle nebula is ~3300 ly away, it wasn’t showing inside SpaceEngine, whereas the Lagoon nebula which is farther away at ~5200 ly was visible; probably because the Lagoon is nearly 4 times larger than the Eagle. How ‘realistic’ IS this skybox? The locations of the stars, nebulae and galaxies in the sky are precisely where they should be, at least according to SpaceEngine, but I have taken some artistic liberty with their sizes. For example, the Flame nebula should appear a lot larger, and the Great Carina nebula, a lot smaller, in the sky. My priority was to create something dynamic and intriguing without making it too overwhelming or too unrealistic. As such, I wouldn’t claim the skybox to be a very ‘realistic’ depiction of the sky from that location in space. Not to mention, many of the nebulae and galaxies shouldn’t even be visible. However, I have reduced the brightness of such objects to make them hard to spot. CREDITS and SOURCES There are lots! Please expand the section below to see the full list of credits and sources. All other objects, except the ones exclusively mentioned below, are sourced directly from Space Engine v0.9.8. LICENSE This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International (CC BY-SA 4.0) license. Expand the section below, for the details. Closing Notes - Since this is my first attempt at a 'mod' I would love to receive your feedback, even if you hated it! I have more such skyboxes planned for KSP and will update this thread when I am ready to release each of them. Thanks!
(I'll teach you how to make that) Introduction This is a step by step guide to creating, exporting, and editing a skybox to make it ready for KSP. I made my first skybox mod the other day and several people wanted me to make a tutorial on how to make skyboxes in Space Engine. I haven't found any other tutorials on the subject so I guess I'm making one. Step 1: Download Space Engine Go here to download the latest version of Space Engine. Space Engine is a free game that simulates the universe. It includes real and procedurally generated stars, nebulae, and galaxies. Step 2: Finding a location in Space Engine You can either fly around (w, a, s, d, to move, q and e to rotate, scroll wheel to change speed, left mouse to pan) or use the search button to search for a specific star, nebula, or galaxy that exists in real life. For this tutorial I will be making a skybox of the Crab Nebula, but you can choose your own location. To go to the location, hit "Go to". Step 3: Positioning Once you've found a location, you will want to position yourself in the place you would like your skybox. I recommend aligning yourself with the galactic plane so it is flat across the center of the screen. You can move inside a nebula as well. Here is what my screen looked like from within the crab nebula: Step 4: Settings There are a lot of different settings in Space Engine. To access settings, press escape -> settings -> graphics. The settings we will be focusing on are overbright and desaturate dim stars. You can play around with other settings, but these 2 settings mainly control how many stars are visible in your skybox. Lower levels of overbright = less visible stars and higher levels of overbright = more visible stars. If you want LOTS of stars in your skybox, 50-60 is a good number for this setting. I also frequently change the overbright setting to get the desired effect. The next setting is desaturate dim stars. Higher values of this setting make all but the brightest stars white and colorless. Lower values of this setting make the dimmest stars have slight color. It's a subtle difference, but personally I prefer to leave this in the lowest setting possible. That way when we edit the image later we get a more colorful skybox. Here are my settings: You can always change these to you liking. Step 5: Exporting Once you have your desired settings, we will export our skybox. Press escape -> editor -> export skybox. In the resolution box, you will put 4096 if you want a 4k skybox, but you can put whatever resolution you want. You should to save it as a .png. Leave the alpha box unchecked. Here is what my export screen looked like: When your ready to export, hit export. This may take a few minutes. Next, navigate to your Space Engine folder. By default (on windows), it is C:\SpaceEngine\export You should have something that looks somewhat like this: You can open up the pictures and see if you're happy with them. If you want to make changes, just go back into space engine, change what you want to, and re-export. WARNING: every new export will override the old files. If you want to keep your exported images, move them to a new folder before exporting again. Step 6: Preparing for KSP To actually change the skybox in KSP, you will need to install the latest version of Texture Replacer Replaced. You can't just put these pictures into KSP yet. First you need to change the names so Texture Replacer can read them. Rename the files as follows: Rename sky_neg_x to GalaxyTex_NegativeX Rename sky_neg_y to GalaxyTex_NegativeY Rename sky_neg_z to GalaxyTex_NegativeZ Rename sky_pos_x to GalaxyTex_PositiveX Rename sky_pos_y to GalaxyTex_PositiveY Rename sky_pos_z to GalaxyTex_PositiveZ Now you should have something that looks like this: Now let's test it. In your KSP folder, navigate to Gamedata -> TextureReplacerReplaced -> default Copy your files into the default folder and boot up KSP! In theory, you now have a beautiful skybox: However, Space Engine isn't perfect and it looks like some of the sides of our skybox are in the wrong place! This happens sometimes when you export from Space Engine. It only seems to happen sometimes, but it isn't hard to fix! In this case, I renamed: GalaxyTex_NegativeY to GalaxyTex_PositiveY and then GalaxyTex_PositiveY to GalaxyTex_NegativeY You may need to move 1 of them out of the folder temporarily because windows doesn't accept 2 files with the same name in the same folder. Then you need to rotate the GalaxyTex_PositiveY. To do this, right click on the picture, click edit with photos, crop and rotate, click rotate twice, done, save. There is some trial and error to get the right rotation with this one. Just rotate, boot up ksp, and try again. Sometimes there will also be seams in your skybox where you can clearly see the edge between 2 sides. The fix for this is re-exporting the skybox from Space Engine. Now let's boot up KSP again! In theory all the sides of you skybox are lined up with no seams. If there are no problems with your skybox so far, you can move onto the next step. Step 7: Photo Editing Now here is where you make your skybox more interesting. You can play around with photo settings to get the desired effect and make your skybox pop! You can use Photoshop or even the default Windows photos app! I will show how to do it in the Windows photos app because I don't have much experience with Photoshop. You will right click the photo and click edit with photos. Then click adjust. There are little arrows next to light and color. Click those to bring down more options. Now here is where you just play around with photo settings. There's no particular guide for this part, just experiment and create something amazing! I do recommend dragging the color slider all the way to the right for a more colorful skybox though. These can make your skybox truly unique. Make sure to use the same adjustments for each photo though, otherwise it will look quite strange. Always keep a copy of the original photos in case you mess up with the adjustments. Step 8: Screenshots and Sharing! Take some screenshots of you complete skybox! If you're feeling up to it, you can release it as a mod on Spacedock, Curse, and The Forums. Make sure to read the add-on posting rules first. Here is the finished product of this tutorial: This skybox will be available for download HERE with my other skyboxes. Thank you for reading! I hope you learned something. I look forward to seeing what you can make! Be sure to post your creations down below! If you have any questions, feel free to ask me in the comments.
http://thenewinquiry.com/essays/manifesto-of-the-committee-to-abolish-outer-space/ This is intriguing. The quoted part is true, but I'm not sure if the rest of the text is supposed to be funny or... I don't know, im confus.