Panda3D’s collision system works by testing the current state of the world every frame for a possible intersection. If your objects are moving so quickly that they might pass completely through another object in the space of one frame, however, that collision might never be detected.
To avoid this problem, the Panda3D scene graph supports an advanced feature: it can record the previous frame’s position of each moving object for the benefit of the CollisionTraverser. The CollisionTraverser can then take advantage of this information when it is testing for collisions. If it sees that a moving object was on one side of an object last frame, and on the opposite side this frame, it can trigger the collision detection even though the two objects might not currently be intersecting.
There are a few things you need to do to activate this mode.
1. First, you must tell the CollisionTraverser that you intend to use this mode; by default, it ignores the previous position information. To activate this mode, call:
You only need to make this call once, at the beginning of your application (or whenever you create the CollisionTraverser). That switches the CollisionTraverser into the new mode. If you create any additional CollisionTraversers, you should make the call for them as well.
2. Ensure that
PandaNode.reset_all_prev_transform() is called every
frame. Actually, this is already done for you automatically by ShowBase.py, so
normally you don’t need to do anything for this step.
reset_prev_transform() call should be made once per
frame, at the very beginning of the frame. It ensures that the current frame’s
position is copied to the previous frame’s position, before beginning the
processing for that frame. Note that if you have multiple CollisionTraversers
handling the same scene graph, you still only need to (and only should) call
this function once.
3. Whenever you move an object from one point to another in your scene (except when you put it into your scene the first time), instead of using:
You should use:
set_pos() means “teleport the object here” and
set_fluid_pos() means “slide the object here, testing for
collisions along the way”. It is important to make a clear distinction between
these two calls, and make the appropriate call for each situation.
If you are moving an object with a LerpInterval, and
you want collisions to be active (and fluid) during the lerp, you should pass
the keyword parameter
fluid = 1 to the LerpInterval constructor.
It is rare to expect collisions to be active while an object is moving under
direct control of the application, however.
Visualizing the previous transform
When you are using the
set_fluid_pos() call, and you have
show() on your CollisionNode to make it visible, you
will see the CollisionNode itself each frame, plus a ghosted representation of
where it was the previous frame. This can help you visually see that the
previous-transform mechanism is working. (It does not guarantee that the
set_respect_prev_transform() call has been made on
your CollisionTraverser, however.)
At the present, the CollisionTraverser only uses the previous transform information when the “from” object is a CollisionSphere. Other kinds of collision solids currently do not consider the previous transform.
Enabling the previous transform mode helps reduce slipping through walls considerably. However, it’s not perfect; no collision system is. If your object is moving tremendously fast, or just happens to get lucky and slip through a tiny crack between adjacent polygons, it may still get through without detecting a collision. Any good application will be engineered so that the occasional collision slip does not cause any real harm.
The CollisionHandlerFloor is especially bad about allowing objects to slip through floors, in spite of the previous transform state, especially when you avatar is walking up a sloping path. This is just because of the way the CollisionHandlerFloor works. If you are having problems with the CollisionHandlerFloor, consider reducing the slope of your floors, increasing the height of the ray above the ground, and/or reducing the speed of your avatar.