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Chris_F

Voxel attributes

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I'm interested in raytracing/casting voxels, and I noticed that people usually only talk about giving the voxels color attributes, and sometimes normals. It seems to me that along with color and normals you would also need specular and glossiness values, maybe even full color specular and other values if you wanted a full range of materials. Yet I haven't seen these talked about in regard to voxel rendering. Also, I imagine that even with sparse data sets this would add up very quickly.

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Many people just store a single byte per voxel that is used to index a table of materials. The table of materials can store whatever attributes you need.

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I thought about that, but the lack of specular variance would make for dull images I think. Maybe sufficient for a simple Stanford bunny demo, but for a game?

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I thought about that, but the lack of specular variance would make for dull images I think. Maybe sufficient for a simple Stanford bunny demo, but for a game?

Sure, but voxels are already infeasible for most games, even without storing a bunch of per-voxel data :)

If you are using a sparse-octree representation, it isn't necessary to attach specularity data to every voxel. You can integrate it with the octree to store specularity with the highest common ancestor - that will give you decent compression, except in areas where the specularity is badly stippled.

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Sure, but voxels are already infeasible for most games, even without storing a bunch of per-voxel data :)


This research isn't for a game that will be released tomorrow. I'm forward thinking. :)

How would SVO compare, memory wise, to things like sparse virtual textures, which are already in use?

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I thought about that, but the lack of specular variance would make for dull images I think. Maybe sufficient for a simple Stanford bunny demo, but for a game?


eh?

If you used a byte to store the 8 then you could have 256 materials with 256 different specular values. Go up to 16bit and you have 65k materials open to you.

In short; what are you talking about willis?

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[quote name='Chris_F' timestamp='1323878296' post='4893875']
I thought about that, but the lack of specular variance would make for dull images I think. Maybe sufficient for a simple Stanford bunny demo, but for a game?


eh?

If you used a byte to store the 8 then you could have 256 materials with 256 different specular values. Go up to 16bit and you have 65k materials open to you.

In short; what are you talking about willis?
[/quote]

256 unique materials. Yeah, you could use up all of those with 256 unique specular values, but there are potentially other attribute values you'd want too. It's like comparing a 256 color GIF to a 24-bit PNG.

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And how many materials do you think the average AAA game uses right now?

Hint: it's not going to be anywhere near that level.


Well, if they use a full color specular + glossiness, that alone is a lot of variations.

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Voxels!!! Yes, I love this subject!
Im writing an engine right now, its just about feesable, Id say next generation of video cards and itll be ok to go for it, ive got really good detail going and its running fairly ok on my gtx480, im still working on my geometry tools, havent got up to materials yet.


Equal detail to megatexture, its about 8 times worse, stream speed and store amount... my own approximation.

Im really proud of mine, im going in geometry tools first, so its like making zbrush or rather 3dcoat modeller except it goes for the precision of floating point numbers in all directions, so its pretty cool.

id say a byte accessing a material table would be the way to go, like whats been said already - but remember 20 gigs at least for the finished environment/terrain compressed to utter hell, thats unfortunately the case for voxels... thats the main problem, everything else will remedy itself the next couple of years, actually getting started now isnt a bad idea!

cubes.png
(screenshot is screen space calculated normals, no normals are stored as of yet, but should be if you want to hide the blockiness to an acceptable level)


Another problem is if you want to animate, rigid animation is fine, just softbody animation means the cubes are going to have to bend somehow to get it to happen, its really cutting edge theory, i bet its possible tho.

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