ScreenFX:Water [WIP]

Hi guys!

I decided to develop screen for rainy environments, e.g. screen distortion, droplets etc. Below is first result of the work.

The goal is not just to create single material, but the group of materials ranging from simple to complex, from non-procedural to procedural and from static to dynamic, so that users will have something to choose from.

p.s. is the first pack of screen I’m preparing. In the future I’m going to create more, so if you need something particlar let’s discuss it!

If you would like some feedback i’ve got to tell you that your distortion is too much, Your rain drops look like molten iron and they have no depth at all.
However good try keep working on it.

My personal setup would be, Plane in Realflow to simulate the camera, Water thrown on screen for a frame, Wait until they form clear forms and keep simulating as gravity pushes them down. Then go into 3ds max, Extract Depth for alpha and extract normal.

Setup on UE4 would be the easiest part since all hard work is done.

Chris I.

Thanks for the tips. You’re right about the art, although distortion textures and strength of the distortion can be adjusted. I’ve seen many tutorials on how to create drops (in Photoshop or 3dsmax), however right now I’m doing UE4 side things.

Reworked material and texture a little bit. Looks better IMO!

Much better.

Tweaked the texture once again (also I’m able to create tons of such textures now in almost no time!). Added parameters to darken drops contour and a slight touch of specular highlights on the drops as well.

Now I’ll move onto more complex and dynamic .

p.s. When I sneezed on the screen today, I had hard times finding out which drops are mine and which are inside UE4 editor :cool:

The new one is definitely better. :slight_smile:

Great work so far devast3d! The latest shots of your project are looking great. Be sure to keep us updated as you progress along in the development of your Water FX. Have a great day!


Added the ability to blur the distortion. Compare two images below. Upper has muted and blurred less obvious drops, while lower has crisp and shiny drops. Which one do you guys like?

I might be in the minority, but the top, more subtle water effect looks nicer.

how does the effect dissipate? Does it fade out, or does it run off the invisible plane/screen?

There is the strength of the distortion, fade parameter and post processing blur (drops are also made with post processing material). All these parameters applied to the crisp drops made muted drops (also edge darkening and speculars were removed from the upper version).

I guess both versions have their use.

If it’s too strong, then it just distracts from the image behind it. Even though the bottom picture shows what you’d actually see on a car windshield in real life, the top effect is not distracting, and adds the sense of realism that you want. The shimmering effect is also very extreme: that refraction would only happen if a full sheet of water is cascading down a pane of glass, not rain droplets. If you really want to kick post process into high gear, try to find a way to animate the drops and let them leave trails. That would be awesome!

Something easier than that though might be to put some fog from the humidity around the edges of the frame, like a vignette. If you can blur the edges, that would be cool, too!

Great feedback, thanks. I’m actually working on animating droplets at the moment, so stay tuned!

Reworked blur a bit (also added blur towards the edge of the screen as was suggested) and added color tinting on drops. Please compare the images.

one with only drops

with drops and blur (maybe hard to see on the still image, but it’s actually quite noticeable in motion).

And one same as second but with new effect applied. What do you think of it? It really adds feeling of wetness, but obscures some portion of the screen (though the effect is adjustable via texture and material parameters).

The last one is bad and let me say why. We keep adding stuff like that, Like flares, Blood and raindrops.

Flares are something (an artifact) that is created by cameras, The human eye cannot really see flares, Blood well what can I say i’ve never seen someone being shot on the leg or chest and bleed from the eyes unless it is something else he suffers from and water well ofc water droplets are visible on glass or your own like glasses etc and would only be experienced like a quick blur that washes out if a splash hits your eyes.
We do not add them to block player view but to stimulate the immersion. Once someone overdoes something like that on players screen the illusion breaks.
*Rumble over

1 and 2 look good, 1 is looking clean and water like while 2 looks like water that has moved / had a motion due to it’s blur.

Realistic, no. Aesthetically pleasing, yes.

Sometimes you have to sacrifice realism to achieve a look, which people all too often confuse with realism these days.

That is incredibly subjective. I personally don’t find , which are stuck to the screen, pleasing at all. It is very distracting when playing a game. Usually to the level of being annoying. By all means is it up to us artists to decide what we think matches the game. But just because it is possible to add a fancy effect to a game, does not mean it should be done. creeping is dangerous. :slight_smile:

Great effect so far. Loving the additions in the most recent update.

It’s almost silly to talk about realism with effect. In ‘real life’, you wouldn’t have droplets of water on your eyes like . I think there is almost an assumption that the character is wearing some sort of headgear or eye-wear. You can choose that for yourself. Besides, sort of thing would be an easy toggle you could provide to players allowing them to disable it all together.

Keep it up, devast3d. Do you have any plans to release after you’re finished? :slight_smile:

When I played Metroid Prime 3, Samus would walk past an open pipe and the steam would fog up her mask for a moment, and you get a quick glimpse of her reflection for a moment when the screen steams up. The effect fades after a second when you leave the steaming pipe, so it’s never distracting to the gameplay or used to mess you up. I would definitely not like to see an effect like if I’m not supposed to be self conscious about wearing a mask of some sort, because that’s the idea effect seems to be best at selling. Having the effect in there does wonders to push the sense of immersion in the environment. As long as you don’t overdo it, you can reap the benefits. Also, Mario did , several times. The droplets were further off the center of the screen, but it was in there, and in Mario Kart 8 as well.

I also don’t like to have those effect all time. But using them some times here, some times there, I think that is good.
A long time ago, on my XNA time, I was using a effect like , but only for explosions. You can see here on little explosions and also on the nuke explosion almost at the end of the video.