As of version 3.8.4, CRYENGINE provides an extremely efficient, yet highly approximate large scale ambient occlusion solution for outdoor environments. In combination with Screen Space Directional Occlusion (SSDO) and Height Map Ambient Occlusion (Height Map AO) additional shading cues are provided to the eye that yield enhanced depth perception of a scene.


Click the images for an On/Off comparison


Height Map AO can be enabled via the Environment tab as shown in the screenshot below.

When active, occlusion is evaluated (based on) a height map representation of the scene. By default the evaluation is performed at quarter display resolution, though the CVar r_HeightMapAO allows evaluation at half or even full resolution as well.

The influence of Height Map AO can be restricted via Clip Volumes and Vis Areas: Both object types provide a 'IgnoreHeightMap AO' checkbox which will locally disable Height Map AO inside the volume.


Related CVars