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[Question] Is it possible to bake only bent normal AO from skylight?

This lightmass baked bent normal AO looks very good and useful for buildings etc, because the AO shadows I see in the dev screenshots seem to have a high range, creating wide shaded areas with subtle transitions (like the AO shadow from the ceiling shadowing the floor and walls), very different from the SSAO shadows, which seems to be only in the small contact areas and in edges. As I need to use a dynamic day-night system, my newbie question: - Is it possible to bake only this bent normal AO in lightmass, leaving the skylight/sky ambient lighting up to an ambient light (which I can script to change color and intensity through the day and night)? I mean: bake only the bent normal AO, not the lighting (nor color, nor intensity of light on the lightmaps).

Thanks in advance,

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asked Mar 11 '14 at 05:45 AM in Rendering

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ue4-archive ♦♦ STAFF
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As I need to use a dynamic day-night system, my newbie question: - Is it possible to bake only this bent normal AO in lightmass, leaving the skylight/sky ambient lighting up to an ambient light (which I can script to change color and intensity through the day and night)?

Yes, absolutely, that's one of the main reasons for the current implementation (separation of shadowing and lighting). We don't yet have support for changing the actual sky lighting at runtime, but that's next. As long as your level geometry doesn't need to move, you can use a stationary sky light (baked shadows) with dynamic time of day.

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answered Mar 11 '14 at 05:45 AM

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ue4-archive ♦♦ STAFF
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avatar image ue4-archive ♦♦ STAFF Mar 11 '14 at 05:45 AM

Thanks for the answer, Daniel! Great to hear that.

My level geometry doesn't need to move. The only things that I'll guess will move a little are the trees, but it's only a subtle animation of wind blowing on branches and leaves, and their projected shadows (from the direct sun light) can be dynamic. Their AO from skylight won't be compromised if they're still/baked. And if the bent normal AO happen to give me wide, long shaded regions (like in those screenshots of the Skylight anouncement post) in a denser forest environment, better yet.

Thanks for this.

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