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Dynamic Global Illumination From Heightfields

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    Dynamic Global Illumination From Heightfields

    Ok so I just got done watching this video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eMF1Th5HK9A&t=28. Which at the time that I posted it points out the feature of dynamic global illumination from heightfields. I was immediately dumbfounded as I never even heard of the technique. What is it and how is it done?

    #2
    It takes the heightfield from the landscape and uses it for very efficient global illumination, so the light only bounces from the landscape. It's not yet in 4.7 but will be in 4.8.
    Easy to use UMG Mini Map on the UE4 Marketplace.
    Forum thread: https://forums.unrealengine.com/show...-Plug-and-Play

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      #3
      Very very cool. When you say it will be in 4.8... how will I enable it when it ships in 4.8?

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        #4
        I have no idea since 4.8 is not yet out so there is no documentation about that.
        Easy to use UMG Mini Map on the UE4 Marketplace.
        Forum thread: https://forums.unrealengine.com/show...-Plug-and-Play

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          #5
          It will be in 4.8 but disabled by default as it needs a bit more work.

          Heightfield dynamic Global Illumination

          * Enable with 'r.DistanceFieldGI 1' on console
          * Surfel GI is currently disabled as it doesn't interop yet
          * A GBuffer atlas is created for Landscape from components that can affect indirect lighting based on the current view
          * Shadowing from a directional light is computed by reusing shadowmaps and ray tracing distance fields
          * Lighting is computed for the atlas using GBuffer properties
          * First bounce GI light transfer is computed for a receiver by iterating over all the nearby lit texels of the heightfield and treating them as Virtual Point Lights. Two gather regions are used, the larger one skips through the heightfield to achieve a larger bounce distance. Distance field AO is used to provide local shadowing.
          * Material diffuse color not yet supported, and regions outside of the view don't have valid shadowing.

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            #6
            Originally posted by DanielW View Post
            It will be in 4.8 but disabled by default as it needs a bit more work.
            Fair enough

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              #7
              "From heightfields".. does this mean that it can´t be used in closed environments without landscape height data, i.e. houses, caves, etc?

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                #8
                That seems to be very interesting for my project. I'm really looking forward to 4.8 and some improvement in the future.

                If somebody is interested in read into this topic, here is a nice paper from Microsoft Research, even if it's a bit mathematical.

                Game Design - Photogrammetry - Programming
                Tutorials · Twitter · Twitch

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                  #9
                  Originally posted by ForGobbler View Post
                  "From heightfields".. does this mean that it can´t be used in closed environments without landscape height data, i.e. houses, caves, etc?
                  Probably not going to find out a lot of information concerning specifics just yet - it still needs some work, and things are likely to change before it is implemented and widely used.

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