2D, 2.5D With Mix Of 3D Rendering (Transparency Issues)
Right out the gate I have hit a huge road block, it has to do with the way UE4 draws transparency and deals with the draw order for it's shapes.
I have tried the paper 2d sprite method but currently I couldn't get the sprites to cast or receive shadows, it also seemed rather limited with what I can do with the sprites themselves. I am using bones and animating a mesh with color and alpha to produce the final look. UE4 seems to be a bit behind Unity as far as being able to build a 2D puppet directly in the engine and being able to animate that puppet. But even Unity doesn't have true bone deformation for their sprite sheets, unless you use a 3rd party plugin. Pupet2D Looks rather promising
If I use the shader method of masked V.S. translucent I can get things to look pretty good but there is no gradation in the transparencies. This works in some cases.
So if I do use the translucent method, I get no shadows and there is no control over the draw order of the pieces.
So unless I am mistaken, it may be impossible for me to get the look that I am going for in UE4 due to the way transparency currently works. I know transparency issues is on Epic's radar, but when will this be addressed? We have this beautiful rendering engine but something as crucial as transparency is still an issue in many different areas of rendering in UE4.
I'm posting a shot of how things look like in Maya as well as UE4, Maya is using viewport 2.0 and I am using their depth peel method for transparency sorting. This is the look that I hope to achieve in UE4.
Also as the game is moving, this type of rending to cards can at times become blurry and hard to read correctly, I have tried to disable mipmaps, depth of field and also motion blur, but none of these things completely get rid of the issue. It is hard to describe what is going on other than to say with movement the 2D art becomes hard to read.
Any help would be greatly appreciated.
Hey NickZucc -
So there are a few settings that must be adjusted but you can achieve the look you are after in Paper2D (minus the Skeletal-driven Sprite, which is actually on our roadmap to add into the engine). I'll try to breakdown everything:
Translucency Sorting -
This is a result of the deferred rendering in the engine and how we currently deal with Translucency, you can however manual set the depth sort order for translucent objects by going into the details panel of the sprite and manually setting the Translucency Sort Priority, the higher the number always draws on top with a default value of 0.
Lit and Lighting Sprites:
The default Paper2D project in the engine is setup to not use lighting so all sprites are created using the MaskedUnlitSprite Material, however we do have a MaskedLitSprite Material (and TranslucentLitSprite) and you would need to set those Materials in the Sprite's Details:
In addition to that though, the default project has no lighting in it since all the default sprites are set to unlit and emissive. So you would need to add a light, a spotlight or directional light would probably work the best for overall lighting. I would suggest using the settings below to start (the big one being turn off Inverse Sqaure, it might be the way light works in the real world but in 2D it can be hard to layout lighting using):
Finally you will need to make sure your sprites actually cast shadows and in the case of translucent shadows like these vines they cast them volumentrically:
Hopefully this can get you started and if there is anything I can do to help further please let me know -
answered Dec 08 '14 at 06:36 PM
Lovecraft_K ♦♦ STAFF
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