Sunday, 16 September 2012

Sea trials - a test of your systems.

Well, I've just bought 20 Arbitrator hulls (because they are cheap) and fittings for five of those hulls (because they are expensive!). I'm feeling pretty space poor right now, but if I'm honest I could always start selling frigate hulls if  I were desperate for the cash.

I've been trying to decide on a format for presenting (and learning from) my kills. I could always follow the Punisher Plan format, but that seems a little dull - I've been there and done that. Equally, I'm experienced enough that my mistakes will (hopefully) be harder to catch. Not noticing I've neuted out my opponent's point, for example, is something that, by definition, I've not noticed. Hard to catch that from memory.

The obvious solution, then, is to simply record my fights. Having downloaded FRAPS, I now present a test video. Edit: Now a much improved video from youtube.

Now, the video itself is nothing exciting. I'm just flying around a little bit, setting up my overview, and testing out my new hot keys (I have more modules to manage than I did in a frigate, so some shuffling has been necessary). I'll possibly do a post on hotkeys later, if people are actually interested.


As far as my HUD is concerned, there are a few key features. First, none of my windows actually touch the side of my screen, which means I can always see where the targeting icons are (often crammed against the side of my screen). Second, my module HUD is up top, not at the bottom. This is because I want to be able to focus on as small a part of my screen as possible when fighting. By putting my modules at the top, I can focus on the top right corner of my screen, as it has my targeting (which is vertical), as well as my overview.

The scanner is just below the overview, so that I can quickly keep an eye on the local area if I'm worried about being mobbed. I'm tempted to switch that for local chat, as that's often a better indicator of what is happening that the scanner. I've also been known to miss comments from my enemies (like "Ransom!") just because I'm not looking at that part of my screen.

I'm not terribly happy with the location of the drone screen, but then that's a new addition. I'd like the box to be taller, so that I can control flights of drones without scrolling. Ideally, then, it would be at the edge of my screen. I'll play around with that, but it does give you a pretty good idea of what I've been using since my first month or so of playing.

Other issues

Just as I used that flight to work out some in-game issues (like hot keys), I used this video to work out some bugs too.

As you can see, the video becomes very choppy once I launch my drones and get into combat with the rats. EvE also slowed down, which is an issue I've not had before. True, I had a few other programs in the background, but I really need to improve the performance issue or this is just not going to work in combat. Given that I've had to massively compress the quality of the video in order to post it, I can probably reduce my FRAPS settings without impacting the final product.

If the picture seems a little "squished" horizontally, that's because of the resizing after compression. Watching the video in a slightly different aspect (16:9 seems to work well) reverses this. I'll see if I can't gradually improve what I'm doing as I gain more experience.

If any more experienced FRAPS users have any hints I'd love to hear them.


  1. FRAPS kills your frame rate. The few times I've tried running it my FPS drops when recording. Not sure about how to solve the problem sorry.

  2. Eltanin, good to have you back in Eve - and I am really eager to watch your next posts!

    One thing about the video: Fraps'ing is a marvelous idea, nevertheless, the video quality of your text video is, um, really bad. I could hardly see what was going on. So, I would appreciate at least a 720's resolution. Or did I miss something where one can change the quality?

  3. Back when I was still playing WoW some guildmates were frapsing raid encounters, they mentioned the problems with framerates and said that it was a lot better when they used a separate drive for frapsing. Either an external drive or a different internal drive than the one on which the game was installed. For all I know even a usb stick might work, thhough the data transfer might not be enough. Worth a try in any case.

  4. Great to see you back! I have quite a lot of experience frapsing and editing eve videos, and I would be more than happy to help you out. This isn't the best forum for it though, so either hit me up in game or throw something up on the my eve section of the eve-o forums.

    Briefly, though, if you're having trouble with your framerate make sure that you do not have force lossless color checked in your settings. You can also tell FRAPS to record at half resolution if you're still having problems. As far as your editing and encoding goes, what programs are you using? I'm a huge fan of Sony vegas movie studio hd 11 platinum. Amazon is having a huge sale on it right now since a new version has just been released. What used to be 120 bucks is now 40.
    Adobe premiere elements is also great. I have Adobe premiere pro right now and I really like it.

    Please let me know if you have any questions, I'm happy to help. Can't wait to see what you do in the future.

  5. Right now FRAPS is making very high quality videos - the one I uploaded was originally 13GB or so.

    However, Blogger only allows 100MB per video, so I needed to compress the video file significantly. I used Win Video Maker that comes free with Windows, and, well, the results speak for themselves.

    I'll try finding another compression program this weekend, and seeing if I can improve the results. I'm told that there are a few different formats I can try that will improve the output.

    As for making FRAPS work, I'll mess about with that more once I have a decent compressor. No point in messing about with settings if I can't see what the end product will look like.

  6. You can try virtualdub to repackage the fraps file into an .avi container with a codec other programs like. As far as encoding it with a finishing codec, you can try handbrake or MEGUI. MEGUI is awesome, but not very user friendly. It's definitely worth a look, though.