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Blotchy shadows on foliage

What’s likely to be causing the blotchy, terrible shadows on this foliage? On billboards it wipes out most of the tree, on more detailed LODs it turns the branches into patches of black.

The light souce is dynamic and the terrain lightmap has been built.

DFAO.

10chars

Close! Turned out to be an insanely bright skylight being managed by a plugin, creating contrast around the DFAO.

Also make sure to check “Distance Field as if 2 Sided” on every LOD of your foliage meshes. But you’re still going to have some of those sweet black holes among foliage either way. No way to eliminate them entirely, you can only make them appear less visible.

you can use some tricks to improve it though
https://docs.unrealengine.com/en-us/Engine/Rendering/LightingAndShadows/DistanceFieldAmbientOcclusion ← scroll down to Foliage

the gist is that for LOD1/2/etc you pull the vertices towards the camera to get them closer compared to the distancefield AO area, and for imposters you pull them towards the camera but on top of that you use PDO to push some areas back into the AO area to simulate a better volume