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Nature Environment in UE4

UPDATE
New shading model for foliage has been added in 4.7 version of Unreal Engine, so complaints in original post are no more valid.
Foliage shading model is awesome, check out Koola work for example

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My thread in feedback is ignored, but I think this issure should be addressed.
It’s not some minor issue :frowning:
Due to the absence of proper lighting model for 2-sided foliage it’s [FONT=Arial Black]impossible to create good foliage, grass or whatever, no matter how you will setup your material.
The current workaround - using diffuse texture wired with sunlight parameter connected to emissive light output plus ss lighting model, but this is so NOT next-gen =_=
I can’t understand how so basic thing keep being ignored :frowning:
Few examples from UE3 and UE4 for you to feel the difference:
Unreal Engine 3
3c07572408054c6470a7e527db775c4f196d8469.jpeg 77b18dceccbef0a0f605d6c698cc5023d3db0658.jpeg
Unreal Engine 4 from Epic Demos

Maybe I’m not aware of some super duper way to shade your grass, maybe I overlooked something - that’s why I’m posting this in Content Creation and not in feedback

It’s well known issue. There are some “workarounds” but don’t expect they will provide you with plausible results.

First you can use emissive to uniformly lit you grass.

https://answers.unrealengine.com/questions/11949/request-foliage-lighting.html

Here are also some work arounds.

In other words, you are absolutely right. We just need proper forward rendering path, to properly lit foliage. On stream about rendering, they said they will be evaluating various forward rendering techniques over next few months, to add to engine. So we can just wait for now.

Pic 3 is a real photo I think…

Hah, well, maybe I’m overcritizing then :smiley: But still, I think idea is pretty clear

I use edit normals + sss(distance blending) + fresnel shading for my foliage

final grass shader:

360° lighting

Man, this is AMAZING!!! Such a beautiful grass!

Wow. That’s beautiful work. Have you considered adding tutorials to your blog for UE4?

Looks fantastic!, great work.

Indeed it is. Loading...

Not sure why it was claimed to be from Unreal 4?

Bravo, sir! Looks excellent!
How do you utilize fresnel?

Someone posted this photo, claiming UE4 and my perverted brain said something like: HM, THIS GRASS LOOKS BAD. IN OTHER DEMO GRASS LOOKS BAD TOO. NOTHING ELSE DOESN’T MATTER!

@Ulrich: Would be lovely if you could share the shader setup for the grass - it does look very good!

Cheers,
Michael

That looks amazing! As others have asked, is it possible to have you share your magic?

@_@Ulrich would love to see the shader setup or maybe a tutorial on how you made this grass… looks really nice and I am trying to make a foliage map as well

thx guys :slight_smile:

here a short break down(is from ue4 beta):

  1. Use Edit normals to create custom normals for your mesh.
    http://wiki.polycount.com/VertexNormal

  2. When u import the texture with alpha mask, check the “DitherMipMapAlpha” is true.

  3. Here the basic MatTree():
    Dropbox - grass_shader_setup_base.jpg - Simplify your life
    Blend Mode: Masked
    Lighting Model: Subsurface
    Two Sided: true

For the gradient textures use a simple TexCoordinate with ComponentMask.

I use in my shader alpha mask distance filling. The mask is no pixelated and flickering in the distance.
Here my MatTree:

The SSS is very hardware hungry i use the distance blending for better performance.

Use the Opacity Slot for SSS transparently.

  1. Create a custom Wind Shader with high z vector offset.
    Here my custom wind shader(i use it for all(weather, trees, ocean, flaggs etc.)):
    Dropbox - Error
    Here the animate texture:
    Dropbox - dynamic_wind.mp4 - Simplify your life
    the final texture has 32px x 32px resolution

Hope this was helpful, sry for my bad english. :stuck_out_tongue:

greeting,
Ulrich

Thank you a lot for sharing Ulrich will try this later (and your English is just fine). :slight_smile:

Awesome, Thank you for the information, this will help a lot. Distance blending is a really good idea for terrain and foliage!

Thanks for the specifics. Your work with Unreal materials is so good I’m surprised Epic hasn’t snatched you up yet!

Cheers,
-D

Wow that is beautiful. The wind effect is incredible. The darkening and lightening as the random wind waves move the grass. Wonderful.

Is there a tutorial for UE4 on how to make custom wind shaders like yours? How to make the animate texture?

Thank you for sharing. That is better than any grass I have ever seen in any game. I mean it. The wind effect is glorious.

Ulrich, you are my new favourite person ever.

Love your work.

Ulrich, how exactly do you use the Edit Normals modifier to average the normals? Is there an automatic way to do it?