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GuyWithBeard

Looking for cheap AO baking solutions

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Hi,

 

We have a project where a game level is built from tiles. We are using Unity but we don't export levels as Unity scenes, but instead we bundle the tile sets with the game and create new levels on the fly (basically info about where the tiles are and how they are rotated) and send the level data across the network to the game.

 

The game needs to run on fairly low-end mobile devices so we cannot afford any SSAO or something like that but the levels would look so much nicer with some sort of AO. I am now roaming the net, looking for cheap AO or pseudo-AO solutions that we could use. When exporting the levels we have access to a lot of power (for instance I calculate occlusion culling data using compute shaders) and we can do some heavy lifting on the tools side, but the runtime needs to be ass cheap.

 

Anything come to mind? You are free to suggest anything that even remotely looks like proper SSAO. Thanks!

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Can you show us what these levels look like?

If there are a relatively small number of general shapes, you should be able to bake occlusion for each general configuration.

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If you have the level at hands, why not run it through a AO tool like xnormal ? If you want to avoid large texture, you could bake the texture to vertex colors.

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That distance field approach sounds cool, I'll check it out. Cheers!

 

Yea, you could use a distance field to generate your AO values and bake that. I actually trace a few steps per-vertex along each vertex normal into the distance field to approximate occlusion in my vertex shader. I'm also using that same distance transform texture to modulate the brightness of my entities, so that their luminosity reflects the same AO that the world geometry does.

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