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ldemarinis
PostPosted: Thu Mar 13, 2008 6:04 pm    Post subject: Dynamic Lightmap Reply with quote



Joined: 04 Mar 2008
Posts: 21

I just have a quick question about dunamic lighting on Blended Atlas terrain, and I though that this community would be familiar with this. I know that dynamic lighting is available on blended terrain. However, when you export from Grome you bake the map. Is there anything other than turning the lightmap dimension in torque to 128 or 256 I have to do to make this work. Should I still compile the terrain normally?
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PuG
PostPosted: Fri Mar 14, 2008 4:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote



Joined: 04 Oct 2007
Posts: 20

Hi ldemarinis,

Two parts to your question really. Firstly Atlas uses a baked lightmap which is combined on compile and overlayed in the HLSL shaders to produce your lit terrain ingame.

In TGEA 1.03, GG included a new lightmap bake function for Altas within Torque (similar to what they use on Legacy), controlled by "lightmap dimension" variable defined in your Atlas2 mission block - what this does is it basically writes out to a separate texture which replaces your Atlas compile lightmap onload (256, 512, 1024 is the pixel size).

Personally I don't thing much of it, takes along time to generate and pretty poor quality results, you would better to do it fully within Grome, and ignore the Lightmap Dimension variable (keep it set to zero).

As for Dynamic Lighting, what they really mean by this is for realtime lights defined in a datablock will cast onto the terrain, and the same applies with dynamic shadows.

So, yes Atlas2 can receive lighting from dynamic lights, but no it still uses a lightmap for its main shading.

Hopefully that answer your question.

Best Regards,
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ldemarinis
PostPosted: Fri Mar 14, 2008 7:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote



Joined: 04 Mar 2008
Posts: 21

Yes, that most definitely answers my question. Thanks so much. I get more answers here than anywhere else.
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ldemarinis
PostPosted: Fri Mar 14, 2008 7:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote



Joined: 04 Mar 2008
Posts: 21

One quick question. I am making my baked lightmap and it is taking forever. I started by importing a 1025 x 1025 heightmap into a 4x4 zone structure. is the possible reason for the long render time. I do know that these usually take a very long time. Just trying to understand the program and the process as best as I can. Thanks for all your help.
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PuG
PostPosted: Fri Mar 14, 2008 7:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote



Joined: 04 Oct 2007
Posts: 20

I think best answered by ALicu, but I have noticed it can take some time depending on your system hardware, the size of your landscape/number of zones - also if your not already, make sure your running 1.2 (just released & some great speed improvements).
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ldemarinis
PostPosted: Fri Mar 14, 2008 8:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote



Joined: 04 Mar 2008
Posts: 21

Thanks man. This product is great the more familiar I become with it the more I like it. Very very clean and a dramatic improvement on Altas' working pipeline.
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ALicu
PostPosted: Sat Mar 15, 2008 11:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote



Joined: 12 Feb 2007
Posts: 1326

Hello, we are glad you like our product Smile

Lightmap computation can spend considerable amount of time depending on the scene complexity. It needs to send rays for each lightmap pixel and see if they collide with scene geometry. In version 1.2 we've done optimizations than improved the processing to 5 (or even 10) times faster computation. The thing to notice here is that the processing doesn't take much time because of the heightmap resolution, but mainly due to lightmap image resolution and the other additional objects on terrain. Also if you use more than one rays per texel (enter a value greater than 1 in Rays field inside the Shadowmap tool) the time will increase (double at 2 rays, triple at 3 rays etc). With more rays it can give more precise results (mainly penumbra effects if spread is correctly chosen) but for most of the time you can use 1 and apply another filter after (blur for example) and still get realistic results.

In general is a good idea to select only a small portion of the map and tweak the tools parameters. After you find good parameters you can apply it to the entire scene.

Also, in version 1.2, with the new scripting language you can setup a script to do all the processing. You can, for example, apply the shadowmap to all the scenes in a directory (load a scene, apply tool, save etc) with a script that can run offline (without user intervention). This is good for teams that do the same expensive processing before the builds on entire game structures (multiple directories).

Regards,
Adrian L.
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