Decal functionality

Hey guys,

please please get metalness in dbuffer decals working!!


I think we deserve some official answer on why decals are so limited. Is it going to be improved in future updates? Is there a reason of why this hasn’t been done yet?

Thing is, the custom normals + mesh decals is a workflow that is being used more and more as time passes. It produces incredible graphical quality (just take a look at alien isolation or star citizen) and is more efficient and better performing than traditional workflows in some regards.

Im fact, people are starting to make mesh-decal-creation plugins for modelling softwares: look at “decalmachine” for blender (it can export to unity, substance designer, sketchfab, and in a limited fashion, to unreal).

You know how EMBARASSING it is to feel that unity users (f*cking unity!) can use this truly next-gen workflow while we have to settle to limited options in this engine? The graphics engine should be a tool that helps you, not a hassle you have to fight against.

Wishlist for mesh decals:

-Independent masking: there needs to be a way to make opacity work independently on base color, roughness, normal… Or at least just make normal not be affected by opacity. This is needed for many reasons.

Must have:
-Parallax oclussion mapping: POM works on decal actors, but not on mesh decals.
-Metallic input: self explanatory.
-Emissive input.

Not really necessary, but would be greatly welcomed:

Exactly, mate! Everything you mention is true and this HAS to be integrated in UE4. Especially the indpendent masking for each channel and the opacity problem. I´ve been working on this issue for nearly a week to find a workaround.

Mesh decal technique is so efficient, fun to use (from the artistic side) and the results are awesome (high texel density and lots of details) - if things work as they should. POM would be awesome, too. In Star Citizen it is sometimes really hard to tell if it has been modeled or if it is a decal :slight_smile: . I didn´t realize that it works with decal actors, thanks!

I ended up using dynamic lighting, because I need the metal channel. But now I have other problems, i.e. lightbleeding in some cases :frowning: .

Independent masking would be awesome.

I agree. The Mesh Decal Materials NEED to be able to blend Base Color, Roughtness, Metallic and Normal independently of each other. Something like switching between Overwrite, Stain and Opacity Blend for each Mat Attribute seperately would make these Decals truely capable of replacing baked Detail maps entierly.

Right now the problem is, that everything that goes beyond just normal decals, like a slight base color darkening by a quite translucent Base color B/W texture also weakens the Normal, while even pure Normal Decals need to be set to be quite translucent so they don´t overwrite the material normal of the tiling Mat beneath the decal.

It is a shame that it is not possible to selectively control the behaviour of Color, Roughtness Metallic and Normal. In Addition POM and AO would be great to have aswell.

Decals material really need that separate blending functionality.
Im for myself really need AO support in deffered decals cause without AO they doesnt looks really good.

I really think that upgrading functionality of deffered decals shader can bring some more developers in Unreal Engine community cause assets creation techniqes which uses tiled textures and decals for details are becoming more and more popular nowadays.

I’ve stayed away from this workflow for a long time for just this reason. Most of what I see out there is a look that is too clean for my taste. I’ve gotten some good results using a second UV channel rather than decals. This allows for all material blends and even custom grunge on floating details, but it’s a little more complicated. On the upside, It’s cheap on the draw calls and works with Unreal (also Blender, Maya, 3DS Max).

it is September 2020. Can anyone explain why these functions have been ignored for such a long time ? Why is there still no AO support in deferred decals and why is there still no channel independant opacity blending option ?

DECALMACHIN3 2.0 has released and it would be great if Unreal could finally catch up with Unity’s deferred decals: Atlasing - DECALmachine

+1 to this. As @dojo states, its 2020 and we haven’t heard anything on this front for years. Can we please get some kind of update on future plans for decals?