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The Time of Day window will typically open with just the basic properties listed but you can toggle between the basic and advanced properties, by selecting the Toggle Advanced Properties option on the left hand panel.

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A complete list of the parameters and their functions can be found at the end of this tutorial. There are also additional parameters which can be accessed via the Rollup Bar -> Terrain -> Environment tab.

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It is important to realize that each yellow dot in the graph for each property is a key frame and times that lie between these keyframes will have their values interpolated.

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Time Of Day Tasks

Description

Import From File

Imports the Time Of Day settings from an XML/TOD file.

Export To File

Exports the Time Of Day settings to an XML file.

Reset Values

Resets all the parameters to their default values.

Expand All

Expands all the parameter group panels.

Collapse All

Collapses all the parameter group panels.

Toggle Advanced Properties

Toggles the properties view panel on the right to either show just the basic properties or all available properties.

Current Time

 

Current Time

Displays the current time that is being edited.

Start Time

Initial time that will be used when the mission is started.

Warning

If you do not set this value correctly, your TOD will not be set correctly in pure-game mode.
If you have Current Time set to 07:00 and Start Time set to 12:00, it will be 12:00 in pure-game mode and 07:00 in Sandbox.

End Time

End time that will be used for the mission. If the end time is set to 23.59, the time will loop, starting the next Time Of Day cycle once a day is over.

Play Speed

Speed at which the time advances; 0.005 is a good general value.

Update Tasks

 

Play

Starts or resumes the playback of the Time Of Day sequence in the Editor.
If the current time is not within the specified time range (between the start and end time), frame playback begins at the specified start time.

Stop

Stops the playback of the Time Of Day sequence in the Editor.

Force Sky Update

Selecting this check box forces a complete update of the sky light calculations in each frame.
If the check box is deselected, calculations are distributed over several frames and it can take some time until the effect of the modified parameters becomes visible.

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Parameter

Description

HDR dynamic power factor

The dynamic power factor is applied to all the light sources, when rendering in the HDR mode.
When HDR is enabled, eye adaption is usually applied, which brightens up dark scenes and dims down bright scenes.
As a consequence, more light intensity range is required so that HDR scenes look similar to LDR scenes.
When the HDR Dynamic Power Factor is set to 0, no change in brightness will be applied to the HDR light sources.
Positive values will brighten up the lighting, while negative values will darken it.

Note

This value should be left at 0 to maintain consistent and accurate lighting results. It will be removed in future updates. Use the HDR Curve Editor controls instead.

Lights HDR dynamic power factor

DEPRECATED (3.6) - Control the HDR brightness of all dynamic lights within the level.

Sky brightening (terrain occlusion)

DEPRECATED (3.6) - This value specifies how much ambient occlusion on terrain, under trees, and the like, should be visible.
A value of 0.0 results in full ambient occlusion, whereas a value of 1.0 results in no ambient occlusion at all (ambient term is equal to the current sky color).

SSAO amount multiplier

DEPRECATED - This value specifies how strong the effect of Screen Space Ambient Occlusion should be.
A value of 0.0 removes the effect of SSAO from the final rendering, whereas a value of 2.5 yields very strong visibility of ambient occlusion.

SSAO contrast multiplier

DEPRECATED - This value allows you adjust the contrast value of SSAO.
Values range between 1-2, with higher values increasing in the intensity of your shadows calculated using SSAO.

Global illumination multiplier

This value specifies how strong the global illumination will be.

Sun color

This RGB value sets the color of the light source used as the sun.

Sun color Multiplier

This value specifies the brightness of the sun and gets multiplied with the sun color.

Sun specular Multiplier

An additional control for the brightness of the sun, allowing you to increase the intensity and brightness of the sun on specular materials in the world.

Sky color

DEPRECATED (3.6) - This RGB value specifies the sky color, which is used as the ambient lighting color.

Sky color Multiplier

DEPRECATED (3.6) - This value specifies the brightness of the sky color (ambient color).

Ambient ground color

DEPRECATED (3.6) - This RGB value specifies the ambient ground color in the world.
This works as a fill light off the ground and can be useful for adding light to darker parts if the terrain.

Ambient ground color multiplier

DEPRECATED (3.6) - This value specifies the brightness of the ground color and gets multiplied with the ambient ground color.

Ambient min/max height

DEPRECATED (3.6) - These values are used to control the height range for the ambient ground lighting.

Fog Parameters

Parameter

Description

Color (bottom)

This allows for gradient coloring of the global fog. This value will be the bottom color of the fog

Color (bottom) multiplier

This value is multiplied by the bottom fog color and specifies the brightness of the top fog color.

Height (bottom)

Specifies a reference height for the vertical fog gradient (in range [-5000..35000], default is 0).
For the fog color this marks the height at which it will reach the specified color at the top.
For the fog density it marks the height at which the vertical density fall off reaches the specified density.

Density (bottom)

Density at the top (in range [0..1], default is 1). Please note that it is possible to set the top density to a higher value than the bottom density.
This will effectively flip the vertical fall off and produce thick fog in the sky and clear views at the bottom. Also note that both top and bottom density can be equal.
In this case you create a fog effect that is entirely depth based only. It is also important to understand that the volumetric fog computations treat a level as a continuous unbound volume.
That means specifying a density > 0 at your given top height doesn't mean that fog will suddenly stop there but instead continues to gradually fall off.
The same is true for the bottom boundary or density values < 1.

Color (top)

This allows for gradient coloring of the global fog. This value will be the top color of the fog.

Color (top) multiplier

This value is multiplied by the top fog color and specifies the brightness of the top fog color.

Height (top)

Specifies a reference height for the vertical fog gradient (in range [-5000..35000], default is 4000).
For the fog color this marks the height at which it will reach the specified color at the top.
For the fog density it marks the height at which the vertical density fall off reaches the specified density.

Density (top)

Density at the top (in range [0..1], default is 1). Please note that it is possible to set the top density to a higher value than the bottom density.
This will effectively flip the vertical fall off and produce thick fog in the sky and clear views at the bottom.
Also note that both top and bottom density can be equal. In this case you create a fog effect that is entirely depth based only.
It is also important to understand that the volumetric fog computations treat a level as a continuous unbound volume.
That means specifying a density > 0 at your given top height doesn't mean that fog will suddenly stop there but instead continues to gradually fall off.
The same is true for the bottom boundary or density values < 1.

Color height offset

Shifts the color of the vertical fog gradient towards the top or bottom (in range [-1..1], default is 0).

Color (radial) & multiplier

Specifies the color of the fog component responsible for producing halos around the sun and in-scattering of sun light.

Radial size

Specifies the size of the radial fog component (in range [0..1], default is 0.75).

Radial lobe

Specifies how much the radial fog component is affected by distance (in range [0..1], default is 0.5).
Small values will make it affect the horizon only while bigger values will make it appear to over glow the scene.


On the left is a Radial Lobe of 0 (note sharp horizon) and on the right is Radial Lobe of 0.3 (note blurred horizon).


Be aware that too high Radial Lobe value will cause it to project in front of objects. 1 on left, 0 on right.

Final density clamp

Specifies the maximum fog density that is allowed for final blending with the scene (in range [0..1], default is 1).
This allows the sky, horizon and other bright distant objects to punch through even if the fog is dense.
However, care should be taken to not set this value too low as otherwise depth perception is compromised and will result in implausible visuals and seemingly apparent artifacts especially when moving the camera.

Global density

This value specifies the global density of the volumetric fog. Higher values produce denser fog.

Ramp start

The ramp values can be used to control the fog density in relation to the camera.
This value sets the distance from the camera at which the fog will start to be rendered (at 0 density).

Ramp end

This sets the distance from the camera at which the fog will be rendered at its maximum density, set by the Global Density parameter.

Ramp influence

This value determines how much the ramp values effect the rendering of the fog.

Shadow darkening

Specifies how much the fog color computed per pixel (via the settings above) is generally darkened based on the volumetric shadow value computed by the engine per pixel (in range [0..1], default is 0.25).
The factor is applied after a darkened fog color has been calculated using the sun and ambient darkening factor below.

Shadow darkening sun

Specifies how much the radial fog color is influenced individually (in range [0..1], default is 1).

Shadow darkening ambient

Specifies how much the ambient fog color (i.e. height gradient) is influenced individually (in range [0..1], default is 1).

Shadow range

Specifies how far volumetric shadows get traced (in range [0..1], default is 0.1; that is, up until 10% of the level's far clip plane distance).
Please note that the number of samples per view ray do not increase so smaller values will result in more accurate results but shadows won't cast that far.

Sky Light

Info

Please note that these parameters are ignored when a static sky is used.

Parameters in this section are solely used to compute the atmospheric appearance of a dynamic sky. They do not directly affect the rendering of objects in the world (for example, lighting colors and intensities).

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Night Sky and Night Sky Multiplier

Info

Please note that all the parameters in this section are ignored when a static sky is used.

Parameter

Description

Horizon color & multiplier

This RGB value that is scaled by the multiplier specifies the horizon color of the night sky gradient.

Zenith color & multiplier

This RGB value that is scaled by the multiplier specifies the zenith color of the night sky gradient.

Zenith shift

This value shifts the night sky gradient. Small values shift it more towards the bottom. Higher values shift it towards the top.


A zenith shift of 0.2 (left) and of 0.8 (right).

Star intensity

This value controls the overall brightness of the stars.
Please note that the flickering of stars due to atmosphere turbulence is completely procedural and cannot be controlled.

Moon color & multiplier

This RGB value that is scaled by the multiplier specifies the moon's emissive color.

Moon inner corona color & multiplier

This RGB value that is scaled by the multiplier specifies the color of the moon's inner corona.

Moon inner corona scale

This value controls the size and blurriness of the moon's inner corona.
Smaller values will produce a bigger, blurry corona.
Higher values will produce a smaller, more focused corona.

Moon outer corona color & multiplier

This RGB value that is scaled by the multiplier specifies the color of the moon's outer corona.

Moon outer corona scale

This value controls the size and blurriness of the moon's outer corona.
Smaller values will produce a bigger, blurry corona.
Higher values will produce a smaller, more focused corona.


Different moon corona inner and outer scales: 0.5/0.01 (left), 0.5/0.5 (middle), and 1.5/0.05 (right).

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Shadow map acne is usually visible at medium range on the 3rd and 4th cascade especially. To prevent shadow map artifacts, the sun shadows bias and slope bias settings are exposed in the time of day.

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Shadow Bias

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In most cases, the "Bias" should be kept as low as possible, to ensure a proper connection between the shadow and the shadow caster. Values between 0.01 and 0.05 offer the best compromise.

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Bias = 0Bias = 0.05
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Bias = 1Bias = 5

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In most cases, you want to keep the “Slope Bias” at a fairly high value, to remove the artifacts usually produced by the low shadow bias. Values between 32 and 64 offer the best compromise.

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Slope Bias = 8Slope Bias = 32
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Slope Bias = 64Bias = 0.025 / Slope Bias = 32

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