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Why is this object shader taking so long to activate?

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I came across something interesting while playing the game Unmechanical.  I am not sure if the issue is a development one or simply my computer sucks.  Any help would be awesome because I am trying to understand the dev behind many games I play.

 

To see the actual issue please watch this video from minutes 9:15 to 11:20.

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6VpATQ3NcQs&feature=youtu.be

 

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

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Guessing it was intending to glow green, from whatever it was being dipped into, but that the shader effect for the glowing green was broken (or that your videocard had a problem with it), so it appeared pure black.

Then, when you dip it in water, it "washed off" the green glow, setting the regular shader back on it.

 

This is completely guesswork on my part - ask the developer!

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At no point did it become completely black.  There was always a faint hint of lighting on it if you looked closely enough, especially after the first green dip, just before you dipped it back into the water.  It was already being light-shaded before it hit the water.

 

Look more closely.

 

 

L. Spiro

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Hmm, you're right. Even when it is almost black, it still seems to be receiving some lighting at various points - at one point green lighting is being cast on the almost-black object. Also my theory doesn't work for why it turned black when dragged into the shadowed corner.

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Although it doesn't look like it, my guess is the game uses some kind of lightmap (maybe a cubemap) for lighting the box (or at least for the specular), and the lightmap is rendered from the scene, but with a delay (less often than the main scene is rendered), so as it doesn't consume too many resources? But the lightmap from the environment is also blended with the old lightmap in small amounts, so that it doesn't transition abruptly from dark to light. That does seem like a weird way to do lighting, though. Note that the red and green light from the cauldron-thingy is not real light - it's just a polygon with a texture that looks like a point light, so it doesn't affect the lightmap of the box when the box is dipped in it.

 

I think developers often implement stuff like this in games that are supposed to run on older hardware, or consoles like the Xbox, which can't do deferred lighting for some reason... Or for mobile platforms, like the iOS :).

Edited by tonemgub

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Seriously, some of the responses here are so eye opening!!!!  Only after reading your responses did I realize what was actually happening!!!  Thank you so much for the help!!!  The game does show a very unorthodox way of shading (even though I have no clue what the orthodox way is).  I noticed that when the object was bright it would gradually (very slowly) change to dark as I held it in a dark area.  It was as if the object was taking longer than usual to adjust to the environment.  I would have never made that connection without your help!!!

 

You are wonderful people for helping and I know if you all joined forces you could make an amazing game together!!!!

 

THANKS!!!!

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