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Note to mods: I'm posting this here rather than the bugtracker as it's not really a bug to be reported, it's working as it's currently designed, but with unintended consequences. Also, as this post doesn't contain a suggested solution, but is for discussion of possible options, this seemed the logical place to do this.
The render distance for tents has a problem. As I understand it, if someone is beyond the view distance of a tent, it's invisible to them, allowing them to see and shoot anyone inside or behind the tent that they obviously shouldn't be able to see.
The obvious solution would be to increase that render distance value, but I've been around ArmA and DayZ more than long enough to know that 99% of the time it's never that simple. If it were, it would have been set to match player view distance from the start. This distance was chosen for a specific reason. I would assume the reason it's set so low is related to the lag we often encounter when multiple tents and barrels are nearby. It's a symptom of a larger issue, and this is a way to minimize its effects.
If that's true, the current setting is a reasonable temporary solution - frustrating a times, but reasonable.
If my assumption is wrong, what is the real root cause? What would happen if the distance was the same as the view distance for other players? Is the problem more of a client-side or server-side issue? Is it related to some attribute about containers specifically, be it anything from protective cases to vehicles? Or is it simply any object that isn't a player, an AI, or part of the map? I would assume that even if the model is not rendered in, the server obviously knows it's there, and at some level the client probably knows it's there too, likely well before it actually renders when the player gets within range. When it comes to unmoving, player-placed objects, what is the difference in workload for the client when that tent is inside the overall object view distance range, but just outside the preset tent render distance vs. inside the render distance? With the advances and optimizations that we will start to see with .63 and continuing onward, in what ways will it address the wider issue (whatever it may be) that necessitated the lower view distance that were not possible and/or practical with the old engine? It seems logical that this draw distance issue would have to be resolved for base building to be even remotely usable. Even if that newly built wooden wall or barricade can, unlike a tent, stop or at least slow down a bullet, having your entire base look like it was made entirely from parts salvaged from Wonder Woman's invisible jet from 500m away is not exactly ideal.
I know that many of those questions can only be fully answered/explained by the devs. If they find a moment to do so, great! If not, I hope that they might perhaps consider using this in some form as an example in a Status Report in the future for showing how the new engine is able to handle a problem like this in ways the old engine couldn't.
I usually make TV style cinematic series based of DayZ and Roleplay (Like THIS and THIS). This time I tried something different. I was approached by a roleplay community to make a "Guide" on Roleplay and general rules of Roleplay. The video describes what a lot of communities do in terms of RP on DayZ. Of course, always read and follow your community's rules and lore.
I truly hope you enjoy it, even if you're not into RP.