Matrix Games Forums

Forums  Register  Login  Photo Gallery  Member List  Search  Calendars  FAQ 

My Profile  Inbox  Address Book  My Subscription  My Forums  Log Out

Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage

 
View related threads: (in this forum | in all forums)

Logged in as: Guest
Users viewing this topic: none
  Printable Version
All Forums >> [New Releases from Matrix Games] >> War in the Pacific: Admiral's Edition >> Scenario Design and Modding >> Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage Page: [1] 2 3 4 5   next >   >>
Login
Message << Older Topic   Newer Topic >>
Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 9/17/2019 3:02:02 AM   
Kull


Posts: 2090
Joined: 7/3/2007
From: El Paso, TX
Status: offline
Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage

When compared to the Allied Ships in WitP-AE, the Japanese offer little variety when it comes to ship colors and camouflage. Even the "as-released" Allied ship sides include a number of late war ships with Dazzle camouflage and artists such as BigB (Brian Wisher) have produced a full range of color options for the US Navy. As for the Japanese, a number of mods offer additional ships (usually a mix of one-off types, small craft, and “what-ifs”), but none are camouflaged and the colors start with slate gray (or lighter) and stay that way over the course of the entire war.

That is unfortunate, because there was significant variation in Japanese ship coloration and camouflage was implemented in a surprising number of areas. Interestingly, the CHS Mod for WitP (in many ways the precursor to WitP-AE) did include a few camouflaged Japanese ship sides, but from what I can see, none of them migrated over to WitP-AE or any of its mods. In order (hopefully) to spur some activity in this area, let’s look at the subject in more detail, specifically:

1) Color variation by shipyard and period
2) The “Camouflage of Japanese ships and Naval Installations” report issued by the 1945-46 U.S. Naval Technical Mission to Japan
3) Aleutians Campaign camouflage (which was not addressed in the US Navy technical report)
4) Ideas for implementing this in WitP-AE

Let me emphasize, please, that in NO WAY is this a criticism of the wonderful ship sets available in-game or those painstakingly developed by modders, but is simply intended to show that more can be done to differentiate the Japanese ship sides.

Edit: The comment about "grey only" ship colors is not correct. It should be noted that Big B's revised Carriers, Cruisers, and Destroyers (the latter are the work of Sulu Sea) do feature a more accurate early war bluish-grey tint (along with other improvements). However, even if you install them (and I would encourage you to do so), that does not resolve the issue of having single-color shipsides for the whole war (as discussed in greater detail below)

< Message edited by Kull -- 1/10/2020 12:24:35 PM >


_____________________________

Post #: 1
RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 9/17/2019 3:05:55 AM   
Kull


Posts: 2090
Joined: 7/3/2007
From: El Paso, TX
Status: offline
Color Variation by Shipyard

I imagine that most WitP-AE aficionados (still shaking your heads over the bewildering profusion of similar-yet-different Japanese ship types and planes) will be completely unsurprised that each of the four major Japanese Naval shipyards (Kure, Sasebo, Maizuru, and Yokosuka) used a different shade of gray paint. Furthermore, those four varieties of “warship gray” were altered late in the conflict when the Japanese faced a shortage of blue pigment, and thus the hues shifted noticeably.

This is a fact well known to WW2 ship modelers (much of this information was gleaned from them), and in fact, shipcamouflage.com sells chip sets based on original samples from each of these shipyards. I’ve ordered these chipsets to better verify the differences, but 3 of the 4 early war “bluer” variety can be seen on the internet and are attached below as an example.

Given that each bmp file is only 200x60 pixels, translating this in-game with 100% accuracy is impossible, but it’s complicated further since bmp files are assigned by ship class, not by individual ship name. So if, for example, ships of the CL Nagara class were built in more than one shipyard, they would have different colors. In addition, any vessel receiving an upgrade at a shipyard different from the one at which it was built, would thereby acquire an alternate shade of gray. And that doesn’t even include ships painted far from home in different varieties of non-shipyard gray or the impact of “weathering” effects over time.

But even so, differing shades of gray among the warships would be a more accurate “look”, to include ensuring that all of them transition to the “less blue” paints used later in the war.





Attachment (1)

_____________________________


(in reply to Kull)
Post #: 2
RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 9/17/2019 3:10:01 AM   
Kull


Posts: 2090
Joined: 7/3/2007
From: El Paso, TX
Status: offline
1945-46 U.S. Naval Technical Mission to Japan

The post-war U.S. Naval Technical Mission to Japan issued a large number of reports on a vast number of naval-related matters (kudos to Jorm for posting the link back in 2008). Of particular interest is the report titled “Camouflage of Japanese ships and Naval Installations” (this link takes you to a handy pdf file).

Although focused on camouflage, the following quote is emblematic of the entire Japanese war effort: "Vice Admiral Yamaguchi stated that camouflage was rather disorganized and ineffective in general, and the administration did seem plagued by a cumbersome lack of centralization and often by misinterpretation of plans and research. Conspicuously bad examples could often be traced to independent action on the part of individuals not qualified to plan camouflage.

A perfect example of that is the truly strange 1941 camo sported by the AO Iro (see pic below).

Anyway, rather than try and deal with all facets of the report in one post, let’s look at the most interesting sections individually, starting with the “early war”.






Attachment (1)

_____________________________


(in reply to Kull)
Post #: 3
RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 9/17/2019 3:17:25 AM   
Kull


Posts: 2090
Joined: 7/3/2007
From: El Paso, TX
Status: offline
Early War Dazzle Camouflage

According to the report, the first instances of camouflaged ships were a series of vessels painted with Dazzle Camouflage in Singapore starting in June 1942. The report provides a list of several ships as examples, but the list is far from complete and the photo quality is terrible.

Accordingly, at this point we'll look at information obtained from a website called "Wetherhorn" maintained by a ship modeler who has more and better photos, as well as some nice line drawings (see attachment).

All of the drawings are based on photos, and although he did not create line drawings for merchant ships, I've added 3 photos at the bottom of this attachment (Suez Maru, Kansei Maru & Nagara Maru) so you can see that Dazzle camo was not uncommon, even for them.

As for colors, all the Dazzle designs were done in black, gray, and white. The lone exception is Sagara Maru which featured a blue and white ensemble (using RN ship paint captured at Singapore).

From a WitP-AE perspective, the takeaway is that a lot of the Japanese auxiliaries and even some of the AKs and APs could be given a cool new look, early in the game.






Attachment (1)

< Message edited by Kull -- 9/17/2019 3:19:54 AM >


_____________________________


(in reply to Kull)
Post #: 4
RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 9/17/2019 3:24:54 AM   
Kull


Posts: 2090
Joined: 7/3/2007
From: El Paso, TX
Status: offline
Merchant Shipping Camouflage

In March 1943, a special committee was formed to look at camouflage for merchant shipping. I'll spare you the details (it's all in the report), but the final recommendation was to standardize on an olive green "Number two color paint (with lighter shades of the same basic color)" for all merchant ships, and to paint them in accordance with the pattern shown in the attachment (which includes color samples of all three shades of green).

According to the report, "this method of painting merchant shipping was used from the time of its adoption in July 1943 until the end of the war and was considered by the Japanese to be effective against submarines" (insert LOL here). The report then displays a copy of the directive from the "Chief of the Maritime Transportation Bureau", giving details of the implementation policy. It's worth noting that the directive is dated "5 June 1944", which seems more probable than the report’s 1943.

Anyway, from a WitP-AE perspective, the takeaway is that most of the Japanese xAKs could have a VERY interesting new appearance starting in mid-1944.

Still to come: Japanese Aircraft Carrier Camouflage, Japanese Submarine color schemes, Extreme Late War camouflage, Aleutians Campaign camouflage & “What next?”





Attachment (1)

_____________________________


(in reply to Kull)
Post #: 5
RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 9/17/2019 5:21:24 PM   
Kull


Posts: 2090
Joined: 7/3/2007
From: El Paso, TX
Status: offline
1944 Aircraft Carrier Camouflage

"Although plain silver grey* was considered adequate for other combat types, special research was carried out on aircraft carriers", and accordingly a "special committee composed of twenty naval officers" met in March-July 1944 to consider camouflage for aircraft carriers. The findings of this group (which looked at ways to camouflage both decks and sides) are included in the US Naval Team's report, and feature a number of drawings showing the different patterns. Most of these are interesting, but of no concern in WitP-AE since the game does not use overhead views. Nevertheless, the top two figures on the attachment below (CVL Zuiho under attack in Oct 1944 and a colored drawing of her deck) show the complexity of the camouflage, apparently intended to make the carrier look like a battleship when seen from above.

Of interest to us, however, are the two profile drawings. The first ("No. 6 Profile") might be from the model testing as it doesn't have a lot of details. However the second ("Enclosure A") is probably one of the "plans for painting that were issued from the Navy Technical Department to the Navy Yard at Yokosuka". Those plans called for “the sides of the carriers to be painted with the Number Two color system in a pattern which was intended to resemble the bridge and superstructure of a merchant vessel." I've included four color examples pulled off the internet (Zuikaku, Zuiho, Junyo & Shinano), all of which use the "Enclosure A" pattern to some degree (although the specific colors aren't always accurate). By the way, it's worth noting that although the "Enclosure A" color chart calls for a mix of "Color 21" and "Dark Blue", the latter is clearly a mistake as it was never part of the aforementioned "Number Two color system".

Putting this to use in WitP-AE, that means all CV and CVL class aircraft carriers (and probably CVEs) should transition to the "Number Two color system" starting in July or August 1944. That would include non-historical "survivors", such as CV Kaga (seen at the bottom of the attachment, sporting a somewhat number-two-ish scheme). That means a merchant ship profile in dark No.2 paint with the rest of the profile done in the lighter No.21, perhaps with aerials and other appendages in the even lighter No.22, as per the merchant ship plan.

An artist working on this project should not feel constrained to follow the "Enclosure A" pattern exactly, as the report also notes that while "the general plans for carrier camouflage remained unchanged until the end of the war, minor details varied from time to time with individual ships." (emphasis added)

* We know this wasn't the color used by the 4 major shipyards, but by war's end it's likely that many surviving ships hadn't been painted in a long time, and this is the visual result of weathering on the grayer late war paint.





Attachment (1)

< Message edited by Kull -- 9/17/2019 5:27:18 PM >


_____________________________


(in reply to Kull)
Post #: 6
RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 9/17/2019 6:47:55 PM   
Kull


Posts: 2090
Joined: 7/3/2007
From: El Paso, TX
Status: offline
Japanese Submarine Colors

As with other ship types, the color schemes of Japanese submarines changed during the war. The best synopsis comes from "Painting Systems of the IJN 1904-1945" by Linton Wells:

"Submarine colors were specified first in 1907 as gray hulls with white superstructures. In 1916 they were changed to all white. After 1920, submarines were painted the same gray as warships, although the wooden decks found on many I and RO boats sometimes were left in their natural colors. Even if the decks were gray, however, submerged boats were very visible from the air, so bridge canopies and upper decks were being painted "BLACK" even before the Pacific War. As the war continued, the black was extended to the sides as well, down to a point where the tangent to the hull was 30 degrees of the vertical. Some Japanese submarines retained their gray sides throughout the war, however."

The US Navy Team Technical report doesn't have a lot to say on submarine colors (but does reference a nice drawing which is attached below), so I'll quote that section in its entirety:

"Japanese Submarines were painted black topside and on the hull down to the point of tangency of a line of sight thirty degrees from the vertical. (See FIG. 10) Below this point the bottom was painted with anti-fouling paint, red in color. A band of anti-sonar paint (black) three to five feet wide went around the hull."

For colorized pictures of Japanese subs, please see this link. Admittedly there's always artistic license at work on these (particularly when it comes to the actual colors chosen), but it's pretty clear that most of them have black uppers, and even a cursory internet search produces many B&W photos in which the submarine tops are obviously very dark. Even so, Professor Linton's assertion that some remained gray throughout the war is also evidenced by the photographic record.

Absent a huge amount of research that seeks to correlate photos with colors, it's going to be difficult to determine exactly which submarines should be black and which grey (and again we’ll have the “bmp shared by class” issue), but clearly most should be black (currently only mini-subs are black in-game), and a good place to start would be those classes which begin to arrive after the war begins. For greater variability, we could even try a two-phased approach in which 1942 arrivals have black uppers only, transitioning to “all black” in early 1943 and staying that way through war’s end.





Attachment (1)

_____________________________


(in reply to Kull)
Post #: 7
RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 9/17/2019 7:27:07 PM   
Kull


Posts: 2090
Joined: 7/3/2007
From: El Paso, TX
Status: offline
Extreme Late War camouflage

The US Navy Team report devotes ten pages of text and drawings to this topic, but frankly most of it - although interesting and remarkable in many respects - has no WitP-AE utility simply because bombing of ships in port is "graphically invisible". In other words, the game will show the port bmp file at all times and there is no visual depiction of ships in port undergoing an attack (just think back to the visuals you get during the Pearl Harbor assault at game start).

That said, several of the descriptions and drawings are really something, and a few are attached below. The first pair are a top down & side drawing of CV Katsuragi, showing how it was disguised as an extension of the shoreline (to include the presence of "roads and buildings" on the flight deck). The second sequence is a less dramatic view of BB Nagato, which is attached as precursor to the next discussion.

While doing an extensive internet search on this subject, I found quite a few models and paintings which showed Japanese capital ships in a mottled green and tan camouflage pattern. And in fact there are colorized pictures of both BB Ise and BB Nagato in which this is visible. However, it's very clear from the Technical Report that this scheme was never intended for ships at sea, but rather to augment other measures intended to make the ships look like "part of the shore".

This interpretation is supported by other sources. The TROM at combinedfleet.com states that BB Nagato was camouflaged in November 1944 at Yokosuka as part of her conversion to "floating AA battery". Similarly, the TROM notes that BB Ise received her camouflage in Kure during the Feb-Mar 1945 time frame, roughly at the time she too became a floating AA battery.

Interestingly, there are photos of two Japanese CAs (Myoko and Takao) in Singapore at war's end, and they too feature a similar mottled camouflage (see photos near the bottom of the attachment). However, the TROM for CA Myoko explicitly states that "MYOKO and TAKAO are moored in Seletar harbor as floating AA batteries" in January 1945, so again it seems highly unlikely that this camouflage scheme was ever intended for ships at sea.

Lastly there is the unique appearance of BB Haruna's turrets (bottom pic in the attachment) which doesn't seem to have any benefit for shoreline camouflage. The TROM states that she received this paint job at Kure in January 1945, but it was not associated with deactivation or assignment to some sort of fixed role.

In closing, it appears that all of the late war BB and CA camouflage does not belong on WitP-AE shipsides, with the possible exception of BB Haruna's Turret stripes.





Attachment (1)

< Message edited by Kull -- 9/17/2019 9:36:31 PM >


_____________________________


(in reply to Kull)
Post #: 8
RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 9/17/2019 7:28:03 PM   
Kull


Posts: 2090
Joined: 7/3/2007
From: El Paso, TX
Status: offline
Aleutians Camouflage

There are a few other instances where Japanese warships were known to have camouflage (even though none of these were called out in the US Navy Team report). We'll look first at CruDiv 21, which was based in the Hokkaido region and eventually participated in several Aleutians operations. The two cruisers assigned to that force, CL Tama and CL Kiso were given an unusual camouflage scheme on 12/2/41 during a port visit to Akkeshi on the island of Hokkaido. As noted in Tama's combinedfleet.com TROM, "TAMA and KISO are camouflaged. White patches are added to their superstructures and their bows and sterns are painted white. The remainder of the ships' superstructures and hulls retain their original colors: Yokosuka Naval Arsenal dark gray for TAMA and Maizuru Naval Arsenal dark gray for KISO." Pictures of each ship are included in the attachment.

Interestingly, both ships were returned to their original colors in late May 1942, even though both would shortly depart for the Aleutians as part of Operation AL, the invasion of Attu & Kiska. Tama's TROM states "Arrives at Ominato. During her stay, TAMA's camouflage white patches are painted over and the ship is restored to her original Yokosuka Naval Arsenal dark gray color" while Kiso's TROM is similar: "Arrives at Ominato. During her stay, KISO's camouflage white patches are painted over and the ship is restored to her original dark gray color."

There are photos of two other warships in similar "white & dark" camouflage, but neither seems like a good candidate for a special ship-side in AE:

The third photo in the attachment shows DD Mutsuki wearing a very striking black and white camouflage. Combinedfleet has nothing to say about this, and I've been unable pin down anything more than a cryptic comment from a ship modeler that "this very ship wore a spectacular camo-scheme in a few months of 1941 maybe for evaluation purpose is uncertain? -but it was already gone in Sep. that same year." Given the little we know and the fact that Mutsuki would have to share this scheme with 11 other destroyers in her class, it's probably advisable to give it a pass.

The last photo is CL Yura, sporting a dramatic camo scheme similar to that of Mutsuki, and although there's nothing in her TROM to describe when and why the camouflage was applied, the photo at the top of the TROM says "Yura in 1938 camouflage". Since I can find no evidence that this scheme persisted into the war years, we can safely ignore it.

Accordingly, of this group of four, it seems reasonable to add a new camouflaged ship side for the CL Kuma class during the period 12/41 through 5/42, since there are only 3 cruisers in that class. Or rather, 3 of 5 share the same bmp file, including both Tama and Kiso.





Attachment (1)

< Message edited by Kull -- 9/17/2019 11:49:57 PM >


_____________________________


(in reply to Kull)
Post #: 9
RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 9/17/2019 7:28:51 PM   
Kull


Posts: 2090
Joined: 7/3/2007
From: El Paso, TX
Status: offline
“What next?”

I suspect this post will be edited frequently in the days to come, but the gist of my plan (at least for now) is to:

1) Develop a plan for including the new camo'd and colored shipsides into a "Rotating Ships" download, using the system described in this post. To clarify, this is NOT intended to be a new mod based on changing ANYTHING in the standard WitP-AE scenario databases, but rather a graphics mod that would work seamlessly with all of the standard scenarios (basically everything released in Patch 7 or subsequently developed by AndyMac)

2) Go through the CHS ship-side art (and that of any other mod which might have useful art) and identify candidates for immediate use in the Rotating Ships system.

3) After I receive the official Japanese Navy Depot paint chipsets, play around with Gimp (a freeware graphics program) to see if it's possible to "morph" the color of existing ship sides so they are a reasonable approximation of the real Naval Depot colors.

4) It's more work than I care to think about, but associating warship classes with Naval Depots would be helpful in determining which ones get the correct colors - both initially and later after the colors change (the "lack of blue pigment" issue). Developing something similar in order to define submarine colors by class would also be useful.

Lastly, it's important to emphasize that I am NOT an artist! So anyone who has the time, inclination, and skill to help out on this is going to be welcomed with open arms!

< Message edited by Kull -- 9/18/2019 12:16:33 AM >


_____________________________


(in reply to Kull)
Post #: 10
RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 9/18/2019 12:18:15 AM   
Kull


Posts: 2090
Joined: 7/3/2007
From: El Paso, TX
Status: offline
And that is that....at least for now. I see multiple cold beverages in my VERY near future!!

Questions & Comments welcome!

_____________________________


(in reply to Kull)
Post #: 11
RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 9/18/2019 7:23:17 AM   
Barb


Posts: 2502
Joined: 2/27/2007
From: Bratislava, Slovakia
Status: offline
Great Thread :) Would love to see the Japanese ships in more differing Camo-patterns than "just gray"

_____________________________


(in reply to Kull)
Post #: 12
RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 9/18/2019 10:58:04 AM   
Trugrit


Posts: 790
Joined: 7/14/2014
From: North Carolina
Status: offline

Thanks,

I like it a lot.This will be a great addition for the Japanese.

The ship profiles are also picked up by Tracker.
I look forward to that.


(in reply to Barb)
Post #: 13
RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 9/20/2019 4:51:41 PM   
GI Jive


Posts: 167
Joined: 10/30/2005
Status: offline
Well researched and informative!

(in reply to Trugrit)
Post #: 14
RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 9/20/2019 6:58:27 PM   
HansBolter


Posts: 7339
Joined: 7/6/2006
From: St. Petersburg, Florida, USA
Status: offline
To date I have avoided painting dazzle patterns on any of my ship models.

Applying it to the hull is easy enough to do as masking those surfaces is easy.

It's carrying it up onto deck houses that seems impossible to pull off.

Need to spend some perusing Model Shipwrights website to see how the pros are getting it done.

Damn good stuff here!

_____________________________

Hans


(in reply to GI Jive)
Post #: 15
RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 9/20/2019 7:53:07 PM   
Brady


Posts: 10697
Joined: 10/25/2002
From: Oregon,USA
Status: offline
Yes, very cool!


_____________________________





Beta Team Member for:

WPO
PC
CF
AE
WiTE

Obi-wan Kenobi said it best: A lot of the reality we perceive depend on our point of view

(in reply to HansBolter)
Post #: 16
RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 9/21/2019 10:58:52 PM   
Kull


Posts: 2090
Joined: 7/3/2007
From: El Paso, TX
Status: offline
Japanese Submarine Colors

I've been working to darken the color of Japanese submarines (as per the findings in Post #7 above), but there's more going on than just colors. To take just one example, let's look at Type J1 (that is I-1 through I-5, a total of 5 subs). This class has three entries in the Editor; the starting configuration in 1941, a possible conversion to SST available in 11/1942, and lastly an upgrade starting 8/1944. The main issue is that J1 has only a single picture (0140.bmp), which causes several problems:

1) J1 starts with a front AND rear gun, and only loses the latter during the conversion and the upgrade
2) Similarly, J1 gains radar with the 1944 upgrade, but the improvement is invisible

Exacerbating matters, the "single bmp" issue affects ALL submarine classes, so it's not a unique situation.

Anyway, the reason I bring this up is that while it is fairly easy to adjust colors on the submarine bitmaps, the information in the editor shows that there's more than just colors when it comes to graphical accuracy. Fortunately, although the "single bmp" is a problem with the default graphics set-up, implementing a rotating ships folder system gives us more options.




Attachment (1)

_____________________________


(in reply to Kull)
Post #: 17
RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 9/22/2019 12:52:40 AM   
Kull


Posts: 2090
Joined: 7/3/2007
From: El Paso, TX
Status: offline
Japanese Submarine Colors

quote:

ORIGINAL: Kull

Absent a huge amount of research that seeks to correlate photos with colors, it's going to be difficult to determine exactly which submarines should be black and which grey (and again we’ll have the “bmp shared by class” issue), but clearly most should be black (currently only mini-subs are black in-game), and a good place to start would be those classes which begin to arrive after the war begins. For greater variability, we could even try a two-phased approach in which 1942 arrivals have black uppers only, transitioning to “all black” in early 1943 and staying that way through war’s end.


The images below are an example of the variety we can see with a foldered system, which would work like this:

- The #2 file replaces "as-is"
- #4 goes into a 1943 folder, either the one for the year or a sub-folder for a particular month
- Since the 8/44 upgrade takes 21 days to complete (and there's no good reason NOT to upgrade), we place #5 into the 09/44 sub-folder

The obvious issue is the Conversion-driven #2 file. Unlike upgrades (which are linear), conversions are sort of a "tree branch", and there's no guarantee the player will choose the option. Much less any way to know when it would be exercised. And even worse, the bmp will apply to all J1 Class subs, not just those which were converted. So in cases like that, there's not much we can do besides providing the conversion-specific bmp with directions on "how to implement it manually" for anyone interested.

As for the coloration, I opted for a "very dark grey" instead of black, because the darker the image, the less detail you see. Comments welcome, of course.




Attachment (1)

< Message edited by Kull -- 9/22/2019 1:53:20 AM >


_____________________________


(in reply to Kull)
Post #: 18
RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 10/2/2019 2:15:24 AM   
Kull


Posts: 2090
Joined: 7/3/2007
From: El Paso, TX
Status: offline
Merchant Shipping Camouflage

Implementing even the relatively simple late war Japanese Merchant ship camouflage proved to be trickier than expected, but after a fair amount of trial and error, I have something that should (hopefully) meet the requirement of graphics at least on a par with JWE's CHS efforts.

The attachment shows three versions of the Japanese Std-C cargo vessel, along with the two colors that need to be applied to its sides. The "test" ship (3rd from the top) used the camo colors as per the drawing in the U.S. Naval Technical Mission report (see post #5 above), but it lost the 3D-ish dimensions of the original image (especially at "game size"). Eventually I figured out how to create an overlay that fit on top of the existing art, and the result is the ship second from the top.

Using a foldered system, the game would display the top-most ship (the existing art) until late 1944, after which the camo ship would appear. The other benefit from the foldered system is that you could have one ship class implement the camo ship side in 8/44, 2 more in 9/44, another 2 in 10/44, etc. Which leads to the next issue...

There are 23 different classes of xAK/AK (43 if you add in the xAPs) so developing camo for all of them would take a while. On the other hand, even though the Naval Mission report says the camo scheme was applied to "all" merchant ships, it seems doubtful that the Japanese would have been able to actually carry that out. Probably it was applied to newly built vessels, and perhaps some number of others. Anyway, it seems reasonable to have a mix of ship classes, some with the camo and others without.





Attachment (1)

_____________________________


(in reply to Kull)
Post #: 19
RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 10/2/2019 2:38:46 AM   
T Rav

 

Posts: 322
Joined: 5/29/2004
Status: offline
This is why this game is so cool. People like the company, MichaelM and you. Not to mention all the folks on the threads and AARs.

Thank you all for keeping this game so alive,

T Rav

(in reply to Kull)
Post #: 20
RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 10/3/2019 12:55:35 AM   
Dili

 

Posts: 4618
Joined: 9/10/2004
Status: offline
In my Med forum where i have many light colored hulls i have found that darkening the sky improves visualization.

Here is Pericles. What kind of overlay technique did you made?




Attachment (1)

(in reply to T Rav)
Post #: 21
RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 10/3/2019 4:23:21 AM   
Kull


Posts: 2090
Joined: 7/3/2007
From: El Paso, TX
Status: offline
Yep, the background does make a difference, especially with an image that is only 200x60 pixels. Lighter is usually better, but the main thing is more contrast between the ship outline and the background color, so I tend to prefer those with fewer clouds.

As for the technique, I make a copy of the shil image and change the "pink" background to white. That is your new "master". Make a copy of that and then cut out everything except the hull. Overwrite every hull color with a single color (or two in the case of my Japanese camo example), save it as another file, and then add it as a layer to the "master". All the white background of the hull pic should be transparent, and then adjust the opacity until the overlay gives you the overall shade you are looking for. From there you can max the image size and make pixel edits, as needed.

_____________________________


(in reply to Dili)
Post #: 22
RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 10/3/2019 5:50:21 AM   
Halsey

 

Posts: 5069
Joined: 2/7/2004
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: Kull

Merchant Shipping Camouflage

Implementing even the relatively simple late war Japanese Merchant ship camouflage proved to be trickier than expected, but after a fair amount of trial and error, I have something that should (hopefully) meet the requirement of graphics at least on a par with JWE's CHS efforts.

The attachment shows three versions of the Japanese Std-C cargo vessel, along with the two colors that need to be applied to its sides. The "test" ship (3rd from the top) used the camo colors as per the drawing in the U.S. Naval Technical Mission report (see post #5 above), but it lost the 3D-ish dimensions of the original image (especially at "game size"). Eventually I figured out how to create an overlay that fit on top of the existing art, and the result is the ship second from the top.

Using a foldered system, the game would display the top-most ship (the existing art) until late 1944, after which the camo ship would appear. The other benefit from the foldered system is that you could have one ship class implement the camo ship side in 8/44, 2 more in 9/44, another 2 in 10/44, etc. Which leads to the next issue...

There are 23 different classes of xAK/AK (43 if you add in the xAPs) so developing camo for all of them would take a while. On the other hand, even though the Naval Mission report says the camo scheme was applied to "all" merchant ships, it seems doubtful that the Japanese would have been able to actually carry that out. Probably it was applied to newly built vessels, and perhaps some number of others. Anyway, it seems reasonable to have a mix of ship classes, some with the camo and others without.



These are very cool, and remind me of playing CHS by Andrew Brown.

It took me almost 2 1/2 years to compile and compose all the unit art work that's available on my site.
Just tackle it a class at a time, and it'll eventually come together.

Good to see others still willing to update WITP.
Keep up the excellent work!


_____________________________


(in reply to Kull)
Post #: 23
RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 10/3/2019 9:11:20 AM   
Dili

 

Posts: 4618
Joined: 9/10/2004
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: Kull

Yep, the background does make a difference, especially with an image that is only 200x60 pixels. Lighter is usually better, but the main thing is more contrast between the ship outline and the background color, so I tend to prefer those with fewer clouds.

As for the technique, I make a copy of the shil image and change the "pink" background to white. That is your new "master". Make a copy of that and then cut out everything except the hull. Overwrite every hull color with a single color (or two in the case of my Japanese camo example), save it as another file, and then add it as a layer to the "master". All the white background of the hull pic should be transparent, and then adjust the opacity until the overlay gives you the overall shade you are looking for. From there you can max the image size and make pixel edits, as needed.


I use the multiply mode with the color i want to use, most of the times and change the HUE too. But i have found if i camouflage i always loose detail even if overall might look better.

(in reply to Kull)
Post #: 24
RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 10/3/2019 2:44:04 PM   
Kull


Posts: 2090
Joined: 7/3/2007
From: El Paso, TX
Status: offline
quote:

ORIGINAL: Halsey

These are very cool, and remind me of playing CHS by Andrew Brown.

It took me almost 2 1/2 years to compile and compose all the unit art work that's available on my site.
Just tackle it a class at a time, and it'll eventually come together.

Good to see others still willing to update WITP.
Keep up the excellent work!



Thanks for the encouragement! I'm very grateful for the excellent work done by you and all the other fine artists who've supported this game over the years. My "art" is entirely based on the work of others, and that sets a very high floor for what constitutes an acceptable modification. And yes, this won't happen overnight!

quote:

ORIGINAL: Dili

I use the multiply mode with the color i want to use, most of the times and change the HUE too. But i have found if i camouflage i always loose detail even if overall might look better.


As part of this exercise I reviewed a lot of graphics threads, and in one of those JWE recommended that Camo (especially Dazzle) be restricted to the hulls, and if extended to guns and superstructure, at least be toned down so that details don't wash out. He posted some examples, and it was a nice look. So you might want to try that on your camo'd ships to see the effect. Of course that's more time consuming to implement, which is the trade-off.

_____________________________


(in reply to Dili)
Post #: 25
RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 10/4/2019 6:48:19 PM   
Kull


Posts: 2090
Joined: 7/3/2007
From: El Paso, TX
Status: offline
Mutsuki-class DDs

I talked about the camo scheme for DD Mutsuki in post #9, and at the time felt it wasn't worth pursuing. However two things happened since then. First was the discovery of a Halsey CHS camo shipside download at Spooky's Site (see image #3 in the attachment below), although unfortunately it didn't meet the JWE size spec (it's 116 pixels long vs. 101 for the current AE model - see image #1 below). It looked cool though, so I did a little editing and was able to downsize it to 101 pixels without losing any of the important details (see image #2).

Even so, it seemed questionable to include a one-off ship as the representative for an entire class, but that's when I found a US Navy color photo from 1944 showing the wrecked DD Kikuzuki (also Mutsuki class), and she clearly has Dazzle Camo (see image #4 below, although the linked pic has far more detail). Kikuzuki was sunk in May 1942, so this is now 2 of 12 Mutsuki-class ships that have photographic proof of early-war camo schemes, which makes you wonder how many others might have had something similar.

Anyway, even though both ships had different camo styles, it seems a lot more reasonable to add the camo version into the game. And in fact, it works even without the "foldered ship system" because the Mutsuki-class DD has three different bmps:
059 - 12/41
359 - 2/42 (also used by the 1/43 upgrade)
377 - 4/44

Replacing the existing 059 image with the camo version would keep it visible until each DD receives the 2/42 upgrade. Even though we know Kikuzuki's camo was present until 5/42, the Mutsuki-type (which is what the art represents) probably was painted over very early in the war (and possibly earlier).

Edit: Revised the recommendation from 359 to 059.




Attachment (1)

< Message edited by Kull -- 10/10/2019 1:26:18 PM >


_____________________________


(in reply to Kull)
Post #: 26
RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 10/5/2019 11:21:57 AM   
Halsey

 

Posts: 5069
Joined: 2/7/2004
Status: offline
Right...
Forgot about all this stuff.

These were done by Fremen, who lives in Spain.
He did a lot of replacement sides that are larger than the format.

He was also responsible for adding the bottom hulls to all of the submarines, because the original WITP only showed the top portions of the submarine.

Because of him, that submarine art now appears in AE.

_____________________________


(in reply to Kull)
Post #: 27
RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 10/5/2019 4:08:26 PM   
Kull


Posts: 2090
Joined: 7/3/2007
From: El Paso, TX
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: Halsey

Right...
Forgot about all this stuff.

These were done by Fremen, who lives in Spain.
He did a lot of replacement sides that are larger than the format.

He was also responsible for adding the bottom hulls to all of the submarines, because the original WITP only showed the top portions of the submarine.

Because of him, that submarine art now appears in AE.


Thanks for clarifying! I always try to credit the original artist, but it's not always clear who that is, especially with the compilation downloads.

_____________________________


(in reply to Halsey)
Post #: 28
RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 10/5/2019 7:23:04 PM   
Kull


Posts: 2090
Joined: 7/3/2007
From: El Paso, TX
Status: offline
Next up, one of the the coolest-looking Japanese camouflaged ships - AV Akitsushima:





Attachment (1)

_____________________________


(in reply to Kull)
Post #: 29
RE: Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage - 10/5/2019 8:22:10 PM   
Kull


Posts: 2090
Joined: 7/3/2007
From: El Paso, TX
Status: offline
AV Akitsushima

In-game, AV Akitsushima is the only ship in its class and has a single bmp file (056) and two IDs (starting configuration and upgrade), so we would need a foldered system to have more than one bmp. However, the colorized photo is described as being taken "during sea trials" and the US Naval Mission includes mention of this specialized camo (along with a hand drawing), so AV Akitsushima should use this camo scheme from the start and I haven't been able to find anything official to indicate that the colors ever changed, other than a ship modeler's comment that "she was completed with the camouflage, and was then repainted with grey" and "I believe the camouflage paint was discontinued after 1942-3."

With a foldered system we'd probably change to a grey shipside near the end of 1943, but retaining the camo throughout is certainly an option.

So how will this look in AE? The attachment shows the existing ship on top, followed by Dixie and Fremen's offerings for CHS. For an AE camo version, I edited the height & length of Dixie's ship, added an edited version of Fremen's crane (plus some of his "dot camo"), and replaced the central mast with one copied in from the existing AE shipside. In addition, I added a boat (beneath the crane) and a few other small features as per the photo.

Probably the biggest change was deleting the Emily birds featured by both Dixie and Fremen. Reason being that in AE you can't load those as "working floatplanes" on an AV, so it would have been "game misleading", even if the picture itself was historically correct. The shipside camo colors are more grey than green & white, but my efforts at "fixing" that made the shipside look worse, so at least for now I'll keep the Dixie camo colors.

If any of you would like to add this shipside to an ongoing game (altered ship bmps are immediately visible, even if added during a turn), let me know and I'll post a zip with the side & shil.

Edit: Wasn't happy with the colors, so I gave it more of the "pixel-by-pixel" treatment. Result is the "v2" pic at the bottom of the attachment. The "wave camo" (at bow and stern) is now much whiter, and the stripes are light green. This better matches the colors as described in the US Naval Mission report: "The forward third of the ship was painted with dazzle stripes in light green and black".




Attachment (1)

< Message edited by Kull -- 10/10/2019 5:13:37 PM >


_____________________________


(in reply to Kull)
Post #: 30
Page:   [1] 2 3 4 5   next >   >>
All Forums >> [New Releases from Matrix Games] >> War in the Pacific: Admiral's Edition >> Scenario Design and Modding >> Japanese Ships – Colors & Camouflage Page: [1] 2 3 4 5   next >   >>
Jump to:





New Messages No New Messages
Hot Topic w/ New Messages Hot Topic w/o New Messages
Locked w/ New Messages Locked w/o New Messages
 Post New Thread
 Reply to Message
 Post New Poll
 Submit Vote
 Delete My Own Post
 Delete My Own Thread
 Rate Posts


Forum Software © ASPPlayground.NET Advanced Edition 2.4.5 ANSI

0.281