"GI without voxels" mode
This is a very experimental mode introduced in CE 5.2. It is supposed to be used only in very few cases. Mostly it may be useful for small indoor scenes where high resolution and leak free indirect lighting is required.
Instead of automatic voxelization, the level designer can construct a simplified proxy scene out of basic analytical shapes like boxes, cylinders and capsules. The engine will use this proxy scene instead of voxels (in the future they will probably work together).
It may sound like more manual work for a level designer but if we look at how many hours designers (using other engines) spend waiting for light map calculations after each object move or parameter change, it may become more efficient for production to just place 20-30 proxy objects into the scene and see the final illumination immediately and have direct real-time control over lighting.
In this screenshot all the geometry you see is actually the proxy geometry that will be invisible in final scene.
Pic1: Proxy geometry
There are 2 lighting components in the scene:
- A portal is used as area light to simulate primary bounce from the sky with sharp contact shadows.
- AO pass is used to simulate secondary bounces and also to collect bounces from sunlight. It is not very sharp.
Here is the demo level, it compatible only with CE 5.2: AGIDemo.zip. Please note there are also new suffixes in object names: "_TI_AO" (Analytical Occluder) and "_TI_AO" (Analytical Occluders producing harder conservative shadow)
The current limitations are:
- Light bounce works only in mode 0 for now
- Maximum number of occluders on the screen is 48 (but entire level may contain hundreds of them)
- Performance is not final and supposed to be 3-4 times better when we decide to continue the development of this feature