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Runner Game  by simonjacoby    *****


Time Spent: About 2 months for the game
Date Added: Dec 18 2012 02:51 AM


here are a couple of screenshots from a hobby project of mine. It's basically a runner type game, where you try to collect as many items as you can on race track type levels. You can boost speed and jump to make cool tricks, and there's also obstacles such as blocks in your path and enemy turrets that try to shoot you. It's in it's very eary stages right now, but it's playable.

The engine is also 100% homegrown, and is something that I've tinkered with in different versions for a couple of years. The screens are from a Windows/DX9 version, but a Android/GL version is also in the works (specifically for Tegra 3 devices and Ouya). I've also backed the Oculus Rift, so if all goes well, I'll add support for that also. No release date is set, since this is a hobby project it's done when it's done. Posted Image

The rendering is a forward renderer, supporting gamma correct HDR image based lighting, implemented by using PRT for diffuse direct/indirect/subsurface scattering and HDR cubemaps for specular/reflections. No screen-space lighting effects such as SSAO are used. The water is standard normal map distorted planar reflection/refraction with fresnel falloff.

The rendering is post-processed (in HDR) with real vector field motion blur and bokeh depth-of-field, a streak bloom filter, automatic exposure adjustment, a channel separation filter, filmic tonemapping, vignetting, 3D-lut color grading, and FXAA.

The shading for the objects is very simple, for the objects basically vertex lighting with a cube map lookup and some math in the pixel shader. The water shader is also pretty simple but more texture heavy.

Since the shading is light, the rendering is very fast (the post processing is the heavy part). It runs even on SM2.0 hardware, and it runs at 60 fps @ 720p on a mobile radeon X1600, even with hundreds of objects on-screen (not shown in screenshots). With most of the post processing disabled, it's even playable on an Intel Atom 270 Netbook which is a good sign for the Tegra 3 version.

Thanks for reading Posted Image

Happy coding,

Visual Studio

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Dec 23 2012 10:10 PM

Very nice. I love the bokeh.


I have to agree, post processing and OIT resolve (being post process itself) are becoming the heaviest parts of my pipeline at the moment. For some components I think that this is a good idea, for other things (SSAO etc...) I think that it is the wrong approach, but the best thing we have for the moment.

Jan 04 2013 06:35 PM

the visuals are pretty amazing mate, could you potentially get a video up of some of the gameplay, it sounds pretty awesome.

Jan 04 2013 07:18 PM

I like the originality.   For "simple" shaders and so forth, it sure looks wonderful.  Keep up the good work!

Jan 04 2013 10:40 PM

nice, i love this water so much

Jan 05 2013 01:43 AM


Jan 07 2013 06:19 AM
Thanks for the comments :)

Sorry, I can't show any of the gameplay yet. Some of the models I've used (as placeholders) are from a commercial game and I don't want to get into any legal trouble. That's why some of the screenshots have a very weird aspect ratio, I've simply cropped them to get rid of those models.

I can post a video of some of the rendering stuff in action when I get home from work if you like.

Sorry for the late reply btw, it took a while for the post to become IOTD and so I hadn't checked gamedev for a couple of days.
Jan 07 2013 10:51 AM

It looks like it has the potential to be really very pretty indeed, but I do find your screenshots are pretty odd - all of them just look out of focus - a bit like when my 4 year old daughter wanders around with my nice camera :)


Another vote here to see some of the gameplay...

Jan 07 2013 04:06 PM
The out-of-focus look is actually intentional :) 
When you run along the tracks it focuses on the pickups that are a bit in front and the rest is slightly out of focus. The player also moves pretty much constantly (both sprinting and jumping), so the highlights on the water (and glowing pickups and highlights on models) goes from bokeh-dof-shapes to bright streaks. These effects together gives the game a unique look. Also, having it slightly out of focus really helps to make the water pop, it's a lot less interesting without it. :)
As I mentioned earlier, sorry, I can't show any (recent) gameplay shots right now. When the project has progressed a bit and I've replaced the assets with the real deal I can post a progress update.
Jan 07 2013 04:13 PM

Here's a dropbox link to a short clip: https://www.dropbox.com/s/lh54wwf4l4ysp28/RunnerRendering.avi


When you go there, you'll see a preview video with very crap quality. If you click 'download' and then 'direct download' you can get the original .avi with good quality (about 16 MB download).

Jan 08 2013 09:14 AM

That water really is gorgeous.