Vanishing Point (Not the '97 remake!)

Hello there!

I’ve been working on for a while now, and since i finally have something worth showing i decided to drag you all along in journey of mine. It is probably going to end up being a cinematic sequence and i’ll also try to turn it into a driveable car in the future. I may even release it to public if i can manage that so that you can be the Kowalski of your dreams!

It is about 400k poly’s now(the interior still needs a ton of work). I used DBuffer decals for the Challenger logo(DBuffer decals rock!) because it wasnt the sane thing to do to model it and the texture resolution of the body wouldnt give the quality. Tail lights are SSS materials. They look beautiful with tube lights in them but the performance goes down the hill with 3 lights sitting next to each other. :\ So i’ll turn it into translucent emissive material i think. And yeah, the environment looks emptier than a desert should be for now.

That’s it for now!


Do you have the Pistol shift in the interior

Not yet, but i definitely will soon. :slight_smile:

Pretty impressive. Looking forward to the final composition. =)

make a vid of the interior and the overall of whatever you have, everyone likes vids :stuck_out_tongue:

Not yet. I’m still playing with lighting. First i had started with LPV, but currently LPV causes the editor to crash if an object in the level has multi/sub materials and one of those materials is translucent or additive. So i had gone back to normal dynamic lighting. But skylight or ambient cubemap didnt satisfy me. As you can see in the first post everything gets too bright(especially the interior gets brighter than it should be), and if i go too low with skylight intensity then metallic parts in the shadows get too dark. So, i detached all the transparent parts of the car and put them together in the BP and here’s the current result:

I’m not a huge fan of the highlight across the bottom edge but i can live with it(i may even change the light’s angle a little bit to reduce that light bounce in the middle) and the interior lighting is a lot better way.


Road test with landscape splines, and here’s why Epic don’t need to spend more time on a road tool for now;


:smiley: best road that I have ever seen in the UE4


that’s an awesome road !

And I love the car being red now!

When’s the cinematic coming?!

(and what’s a DBuffer Decal vs a regular Decal?)

looks awesome as always :), if you do make a cinematic will it have the splat at the end?

Thanks guys!

, you can hear a better explanation of Dbuffer decals here: ://

And how to enable them;

They are more useful for static lighting but they also have more blend modes so i enabled them. I dont mind the performance for anyway, and their performance cost isn’t anything drastic considering i have 4 decals on the car for now.

The car is going to be white again in the end, btw, but i wanted to go for a change time. I’ll make a rainbow paint for you when it is finished though! :smiley:

@, which splat do you mean?


splat (1m50s), would look epic;)

Ahh…man, you are rude! Kowalski isn’t even here yet and you’re thinking about killing him? :frowning: Nah, i’m not going to kill him. And even if i wanted to recreate that scene the only thing i have to block the road is the Flying Scotsman right now…lol

Looks great! And I’m not just saying that because a challenger is one of my favorite cars. :slight_smile:

Cheers, TJ! Hope i can make it as awesome as it is in real life in the end. :slight_smile:

Hey !

Just to warn you…long post incomming :smiley:

So first of all, about your LPV crash. Its not crashing because you have mat IDs that use translucency. Its crashing because these mat IDs are casting shadows. Just deactivate shadow casting on these parts in the static mesh/skel mesh viewer and you should be fine :wink:

However, when talking about LPVs vs. Lightmass I just want to mention some things that you might not know (or maybe you do and decided to artistically work around them, which is totally fine^^)

So first of all, LPVs are super cool, but for now, they only support ONE . And that is to make dynamic GI from the main directional light. While that is already a cool thing, its impossible to get convincing results with that because some features that are missing are so elemental to the consistency of a rendered image, that it “almost” makes no sense to really use them right now.

The thing is, the material system for example needs reflections, because without them, they dont look the way they should and that is for all types of materials, but its the most important thing for metals. Right now, LPVs dont support the whole reflection environment from UE4 which means, all materials will look broken. The reflection environment in UE4 right now is FULLY static.

Yes, there are SSR, but they are not really a part of the reflection environment and are also way to weak/buggy/limited to provide full reflections.

The thing is, you could still use a skylight to use it for reflections (and that only works if you dont deactivate Lightmass which you then need to build with the main light deactivated to get no lighting from it), but since it will not only make reflections, but bounce lighting as well, you will get double GI :frowning:

If you reduce the intensity, you will also reduce the intensity of the reflections…so thats not so cool^^

What you also have to be aware of, even if you say “force no precomputet lighting” in the world settings, static lighting stuff is still active in the shaders and causes permutations, slow downs and texture streaming to hang. So if you really want to use the LPVs, you should also add “StaticLighting=0” into the console variables. That makes **** a loooot faster :smiley: (and it could help you with your 3 lights for the backlights. Also for those, I would use 3 movable lights with shadows off, and only the one in the middle will get shadows on…if that makes a difference for the looks. So you can guarantee some nice shadows while maintaining performance)

But as mentioned, then you will force deactivate anything static, so no skylight reflections anymore. You will only get SSR and metals will look white.

As an interesting information…since Lionhead is developing the LPVs for UE4… is what they have right now:

all the cool stuff mentioned there, is sadly not in our build yet. So I would definitely use LPVs, but not until these updates are provided^^

In your case, I would totally use Lightmass with the skylight. Make an importance volume around your road, add the skylight with a radius that is tweaked in a way you will still capture the bg mountains and add reflection capture actors only where stuff is close to the road so you will get reflections of these when the car passes them.

You wrote on the answer hub that without LPV, your interior is way too dark. That could be caused by having no indirect lighting cache so your skel mesh (which I suppose the car is) wont get any of the prebaked bounce lighting. The importance volume should fix that. Also note that when you make black/dark materials, they should never be black. In our production, the darkes material we allow has a luminosity value of 60/60/60 rgb. Charcoal is around 50, but thats fine. Black leather or plastic is at about 75-80. So with that in mind, it should actually not get too dark inside your car :wink:

Hope that helps and is at least a bit informative for you :smiley: If you already knew…just read over it and continue with awesome project xD

Cheers! :slight_smile:

That is a long post indeed! :smiley: Thanks for taking the time to explain all . :slight_smile:

So first of all, hope you dont regret typing half of that, but i havent even touched static lighting for one yet. :smiley: The landscape isn’t final yet and i figured i’ll change the lighting during and after it is finished so i decided to go fully dynamic. The main focus is the car(or cars, who knows) and probably the only static objects are going to be the landscape and foliage, and foliage doesnt agree with static lighting so easily nowadays anyway.

The reason i skipped skylight is, you need to disable “Lower Hemisphere Black” in order to get full reflections without baking lights. Otherwise, the lower side of reflective surfaces get pure black when SSR can’t capture enough reflections. And when you disable it, you get the reflections but lighting gets blown up and you cant fix it with AO either, and if you reduce intensity then reflections go down as well as you mentioned. It also saturates the landscape more than i need. It is going to be a desert so LPV’s shadows looked good enough to me. The shadows look darker in the distance but it is a distance i can handle with atmospheric fog.

About LPV vs. Translucency…Here’s my bug report on that: https://answers.unrealengine/questions/35329/lpv-causing-crash-with-translucent-material-in-a-m.html

I don’t know what you mean by deactivating shadow casting on skeletal mesh parts, but i tried every possible tick box i can imagine and nothing worked. It is not a big deal at all though and it may even be something on my side, so, i’m just importing transparent parts as separate meshes and putting them together in the blueprint.

I can’t let the tail lights not cast shadows since their light leak to the rear tyres, but that console variable you mentioned got me curious. Is it r.StaticLighting=0? It doesnt seem to work for me for some reason.

Finally on materials, i worked with PBR long before UE4 so have no worries. :slight_smile:

All in all, is a hobby project and has no deadline so i’m taking my time experimenting all possibilities. I’ll give static lighting a go as well once the landscape gets its final looks and keep you posted.

Thanks again for all the input and dont hesitate to make suggestions as you find more!

Hey ,

first of all, thanks for your detailed response! :slight_smile: As for the skylight and lower hemisphere shadowing, I actually havent tried out the differences that much^^ So I will do that to make sure I fully know how its affecting everything. Just did some small testing with it that wasnt so much depending on reflections.

I also have to say that I really love to have everything dynamic. I mean, I can fully work with lightmass and also would say that I quite know a lot about it now, but I really prefer a fully dynamic setup :smiley: Its just less time waiting and more time spent on cool things and finding cool work arounds :smiley:

About dark distance shadows, yeah I really hope Epic/Lionhead will at some pont introduce a that allows us to lerp the LPV against the ambient cubemap from an unbound post volume. Right now, you can not adjust the resolution of the LPV, so the bigger you make it, the worse the gi and the leaking gets. I found a good value is at 6000 units and an injection bias at around 3. However, that also means that the volume is quite small and shadows will get black pretty fast. Lerping those two would really help keeping shadow color nice outside the LPV.

Regarding your bug report…we (me and our graphics/all-around-genius programmer :D) already commented on it :wink:

About deactivating the shadow casting…take the skel mesh that you use for your BP setup und do :


Tested it on 4.1 and got no crash :slight_smile:

The console variable is: r.AllowStaticLighting=0

Yeah man…didnt mean to offend you (I dont think you are but just sayin^^) Its quite hard…PBR is still something people are struggeling with. I mean…I see a lot that are just so used to fake things that they just really cant let go and adapt :smiley:
And you can totally see it in the material work. Anyway, I love it!^^ And by the way, I also really dig your material definition! :smiley:

Yeah man, same goes for my preoject with the Bugatti. Lets see how long it will take me to finish it off besides all the other stuff I am working on xD

Hey, thanks as well and looking forward to see more!


She’s Alive!

Thanks to super awesome 4.2 release and Ori’s tutorials i got her up and running and it feels good to see her in motion. ^^


It still needs tweaking and there is something i’m not sure if it is expected behaviour or not. Like, the suspensions raise the body of the car after a certain speed and then lowers back when i slow down. It happens with template and offroad car as well so who knows.

Oh, and i found an about 200kmx200km heightmap of some part of Nevada, so i’ll split it up and recreate the terrain after i’m with tweaking the car.

it looks so much better in motion, gives it life:), although it looks like it needs more body roll, I am guessing that is one of the things youre going to tweak, cant wait to see it after you’ve finished:D