A full day of 'meet' today, covering all topics in and out of development, with some good short term goals set for the next three weeks. We also revisited the issue of lighting balance, which I am still at a loss to fully grasp the issue.
As you can see above, this is a variant of the 30 ambient, 50 contrast setting from yesterday which is now adjusted to 40 ambient and 40 contrast to create more of a day-time lighting effect.
We have also tentatively planned to bring in an artist to mock-up a typical scene inside the 3D modeller, complete with desired lighting and a fly through so we can compare his 'correct' lighting system with my 'obviously incorrect' lighting system. As I say, I am still coming to terms with exactly what is incorrect in the above shot aside from the obvious lack of ambient occlusion shading, more scenery, more action and perhaps a few atmospheric effects. I have handed off the production of this fly-through so I do not get distracted with my immediate mission to finish the pre-bake process, save some precious memory usages and move swiftly onto performance. Hopefully it will yield results from an additional perspective on the visual finish of the engine, and certainly create some new assets in the process.
Development work resumes Friday, which should hopefully see the light mapper producing a fast light mapped object set for The Escape demo, which is my current test level. Once that is in and working, I will be switching over to what I am calling my 'glass terrain' trick which will lightmap a film of geometry stretched over the terrain world to catch the floor shadows of every object in the scene, and then render that super-fast. I can then remove the static rendering of the shadows and thus improve performance as I hand over this responsibility to pre-baked shadows. Should not be too many distractions on my radar so should get some good coding done.
As an amusing aside, I just discovered a band called "The Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain" which played a great rendition of The Good, The Bad & The Ugly and also Leaning On A Lamp Post. Made me smile a lot :)
Also, in case you missed the news or lost touch, Alpha 6 of AGK V2 is now available to all AGK V2 pledgers, details here:
If you have not checked out AGK in a while, you have to check out this latest alpha, it's coming on in leaps and bounds! If you don't know what AGK is, it's the easy to use programming tool behind the number one Driving Test mobile app in the UK. Check out the platforms supported: http://theorytestapp.co.uk/
I am personally looking forward to the new 3D and Shader command additions, and especially keen to see the performance achievable from the new generation of really fast Android devices!