Sprite DLight - Support ?

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  • "Looks cool but I don't know how heavy it is if it is being used in runtime. I'm all in for something like this, but it seems like a big support request."

    I appreciate Dee explanation of some of the information. However I would also like to clarify on top. That DLamp does not generate Normal Maps at run time. Normal Maps are generated outside C2 and added to the project by other apps.

    "Without a proper shader or a sprite object that supports the separate maps, I find it hard to believe that this is actually feasible. Don't forget that for each Sprite object that we want this effect to be applied, we need at least one extra sprite overalyed, that will hold the "bump" effect. "

    Elios as a good point here. First it's feasible, but we have to create a little mini system to support this. It would be nice to have Sprite plugin to support Maps or a Behavior to support Maps. As it is right now. The best way is to create a MapLayer under/over? the sprite layer. Pin the Normal Map to the sprite. And set the layer to which ever layer it needs to be. There are samples of light mapping on the C2 forums here and there. However it's not as convenient as other systems, which attach the map to the texture groups or objects. But maybe some requesting to Ashley.

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  • Right, the tool does not provide plugins for runtime-calculation of normal maps, it just provides the maps as images, which can then be used in game engines.

    Doing plugins for game engines separately would require me to rewrite the tool for various different engines, in multiple programming languages, which would of course be cool, but this exceeds the scope of the project by far ($2,2k funding goal and estimated delivery date by April 2015).

    Another reason making runtime-generation of normal maps in the quality of Sprite DLight very unlikely is that the shape volume effect is pretty performance-heavy.

    This effect is one of the major things that separate the generated maps from the output of other tools, like CB (you saw the difference in the animations), and dropping that for better performance would make the whole thing kind of pointless.

  • jayderyu , please note that I'm basing my concerns on my personal experience with this kind of approach.

    On my project memories the third level is full of textures with the bump shader on top of the regular "diffuse" Sprites. You can hit esc and choose the "time" level if you wish too see what I mean.

    In this level I have many parallaxed layers that all need to have a layer above them, holding the bump shader. I had to make a system that created all the normal map textures at run time and scattered them in the correct position and corresponding layer for each diffuse Sprite. It was a difficult task to do and it automatically doubled the number of sprite objects/instances. It also has a hit in performance.

    I like the idea of a Sprite object that has multiple map capabilities, or something like a behavior that holds the necessary maps. I bet it won't happen any time soon however, perhaps If C2 had a "real" lighting system it would wad been easier to implement.

  • A quick update on Sprite DLight:

    The Kickstarter got funded within 17 hours after launch and is now at 170%. Thanks to all of you who backed it or gave me feedback on it, I am still overwhelmed.

    Now I'd like to ask you guys for suggestions regarding stretch goals. Any ideas for additional features are very welcome.

  • Now I'd like to ask you guys for suggestions regarding stretch goals. Any ideas for additional features are very welcome.

    Brilliant, congratulations!

    For stretch goals, personally I'd like to see you working with a select few game creation applications (C2 among them, of course) to improve integration of Sprite DLight's outputted maps. For example, having a behaviour for objects that allows you to overlay those maps on a regular sprite, and interface with the existing light object. No idea how you'd do that but I imagine it'd require outsourcing the work. (We have a couple of geniuses on these forums who I'm sure could help!)

  • Thank you, GeometriX.

    Your stretch goal proposal is something I will not add as a stretch goal, but my plan is to get in touch with experts for some of the most popular engines and to set up some kind of knowledge base to give users a starting point.

  • The project finally has four stretch goals:

    • $ 4.000 Lighting preview (already reached)

    • $ 7.000 Mac version

    • $ 9.000 Re-Rendering

    • $11.000 Manual artistic control

    I made another video to introduce all these new features. It is included in the Kickstarter stretch goal update of Sprite DLight (Update #4).

    Thanks to everybody who contributed to these stretch goals with amazing ideas, and thanks to all of you who backed the project.

  • A small update:

    Stretch goal #2 is reached. Sprite DLight will also be available for Mac!

    Here is a screenhot of the first Mac test build:

  • Happy Thanksgiving!

    There is a new feature: an animated dynamic lighting preview for sprite sheets.

    The full update including a video, is available on the kickstarter project page (Update #6)

    "Selen Run Animation", ©2014 Lunar Ray Games, animated dynamic lighting preview of the sprite sheet in Sprite DLight

  • This looks quite good. I've already got Sprite Lamp, but I'll be jumping on the kickstarter for this too.

    I hope as these approaches become more popular Ashley seriously considers implementing a "real" lighting engine into Construct 2, or if that isn't possible, maybe Construct 3? The amount of hacky nonsense that you need to go through to fake lighting is quite disappointing, and you never really get what you hoped for.

    Biggest shortfalls, in my opinion:

    • Multiple light sources are apparently still impossible in C2.
    • You need to combine several different objects/techniques (sprite blobs, shadowcasters, normal maps) to achieve a complete lighting system, and they rarely play well together, resulting in many situations where the lighting breaks.

    If these issues are never fixed for Construct, I'll still happily use this tool to generate normals for use in Unity. Looks like a good way to get a butt-load of usable maps quickly and easily.

  • Thanks a lot, plauk

    Yes it would really be nice to have Construct 2 fully support dynamic lighting.

    In the meantime, you could still go with the new feature of the recently reached stretch goal, which allows you to re-render sprites with the lighting conditions of different environments, based on the generated normal map. This feature will work with batch processing and it transforms the spot light into a directional light, so all subjects on sprite sheets can be consistently rendered:

    "Super Aged Warriors Alpha 2 HD Turbo Special", ©2014 AlbertoV (DYA Games), re-rendered for different environments with the normal map and lighting of Sprite DLight

  • The final stretch goal (a feature which allows for convenient adjustments to the generated normal maps) has been reached and the project has 6 more days on Kickstarter.

    I am currently re-designing the UI:

  • The clock is ticking...

    27 hours left to grab the tool at the Kickstarter backer price and to jump in for the beta.

    "Skull Plant", ©2013 Kevin Chaloux (kaiseto.deviantart.com) , normal map and dynamic lighting preview of Sprite DLight

  • is this something I could use stationary outside the layout view to light my sprites? I have a top-down space shooter and I would like to simulate light coming from a nearby star. thanks..

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