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Buildmark [ray tracing sandbox & benchmark]

Discussion in 'Made With Unity' started by Lex4art, Jan 28, 2021.

  1. Lex4art

    Lex4art

    Joined:
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    Posts:
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    Buildmark is a sandbox with gameplay based around ray tracing tech - real time global illumination, reflections and shadows. Take on build challenges to see how ray tracing works and what can be achieved with all its pros and cons. Also, there is a ray tracing benchmark to decide who is the boss!

    Already available on Steam (Early Access program).
    Development progress & plans
    Discord (work in progress)
    Youtube (work in progress)
    Benchmarking Leaderboards

    FAQ:
    • Q: Can I run Buildmark on non-RTX videocard/integrated graphics just for benchmarking?
      A: No. Even benchmark won't start without Microsoft DXR ray tracing tech support in your hardware. There are some exceptions (Nvidia added software support for ray tracing in several non-RTX videocards), but don't expect comfort gameplay with those - fps will be simply unplayable.

    • Q: Can I run Buildmark on newest AMD 6xxx series videocards?
      A: Theoretically should work with Buildmark but not tested *yet*.

    • Q: Were are save files stored? I need to backup my super cool stuff I've build.
      A: Saves for Play/Build mode are simple text files stored only locally:
      C:\Users\ your_windows_user_name \AppData\LocalLow\Techkind\Buildmark
      (If Windows installed on disk "C:\", if not - use appropriate disk name instead).

    Buildmark v2021.1 _ 19-01-2021 105.jpg Buildmark v2021.1 _ 27-01-202152.jpg Buildmark v2020.1 16-11-2020 84.jpg Buildmark v2021.1 _ 23-01-2021 111.jpg

    Current limitations
    • Video memory management is wasteful for now (no texture streaming bug) - users with 6GB and 8GB videocards will have 2x lower texture resolution by default (except benchmark scene) till this issue is fixed. Temporarily (till map reload) textures can be forced to full res with Ctrl + F6 but keep an eye on VRAM consumption or Buildmark will slow down or even crush. Use Ctrl + F7 to return to half-res textures/images or just save and load scene to reset it into defaults.
    • Build mode has enough textures in material library to overload even 11GB 2080Ti - it's up to you how many material variety to apply on the objects of the world. Also, remember about Ctrl + F7 to switch on half-res textures to free a lot of VRAM.
    • Undo (Ctrl + Z) can cancel only one action [to be improved].
    • Slow loading of save files in Build mode [by design, multi-threaded loading may be possible in future releases].
    • Multi-selection highlight effect not visible on objects with emissive materials.
    • In Build mode spawning objects takes a time, at least for the first object or two from selected category. By design, unfortunately [hope to improve that - addressables are tricky to use].

    • Nothing too serious for now.

    In the initial release of Buildmark its interface was 'geekish' - walls of text to read, tons of hotkeys to keep in memory and different interfaces for Play and Build modes - only handful of the tech enthusiasts survived through all this. That was fundamental problem and got highest priority to be rethought and reworked... So, two months later, here is the patch to fix those problems.

    Substantial changes:
    • New Q.E.R.F.C.T. interface - simple & unified between Play & Build modes.
    • Gameplay improvements for Play mode - better 'item hunt', persistent inventory between levels.
    • Reduced Play mode complexity - now it's one feature at a time to deal with.
    • Added flashlight to make building process easier in places were global illumination can't reach. Flashlight is not available in 'Night challenge' from start but can be found there as a hidden pickable tool.
    • Some achievements were added for Play mode and benchmarking; nothing for Build mode *yet*.
    • New 3D text generation engine provided means for localization of Buildmark - just translate provided text file (supported ~582 languages, including simplified Chinise, Japanese, Korean and Thai) and put it in the same folder were Buildmark.exe is located. Also, now you can enter player name (that is above your avatar in game) in any supported language in any combination - "English only" restriction is no more.


    Small improvements:
    • Added mini tutorial scene for build mode. With time it will be improved, for now I hope it will be enough for building enthusiasts ).
    • Added 'Tier 0' graphics quality - draft mode. It's using screenspace instead of ray tracing; only shadows are ray traced. Very noisy but useful for building something really heavy or for videocards without hardware ray tracing support.
    • Minor sound improvements (added "select/deselect object sound, replaced annoying "apply material" high pitch sound to new one and so on).
    • Teleporters now working on one hotkey 'V' instead of 'F1'/'F2'/'F4'/'F4'. Teleporters can be duplicated. So each time you press 'V' to teleport there will be teleportation to the next available teleporter.
    • In Play mode hold 'Shift" while dragging spawned object to temporarily enable 0.25m snapping. In Build mode there is an option to spawn object with snapping to 0.25m/1m world grid. Useful for placing architecture objects.
    • New tool for build mode - "reset position": roundup horizontal *world* coordinates of selected object to nearest 0.25m.
    • Crosshair is more informative about current tool, it's modifiers and selection status.
    • Added scrollbars for saved games in main menu.
    • Added scrollbars in Build mode for spawnable objects & material inventory.
    • In Build mode you can hold 'Spacebar' to fly higher and 'Ctrl + spacebar' to lower down.
    • Fixed Tier detection happens twice.
    • Fixed avatar physics bug allowing climbing on walls if you're close enough to it's surface.
    • In Build mode you can spawn teleporter(s) - you can find it in "System" category of spawnable objects calalogue.
    • Many more minor quality of life improvements.

      //Changes:
      - Saves made with previous Buildmark version will work but some assets will be missing (system items - FAQ stands, teleporters and such).

    • Quick fix for graphics settings auto-detection script that can force lowest graphics settings (Tier1) no matter the actual hardware. Now it works properly, new auto-detection will be performed on start to find & set fair graphics settings.

    • Added "Power saving mode" (after 45 seconds of inactivity it will be turned on - lowest graphics settings + 3 fps max cap).
    • Benchmark Leaderboards now opening inside Steam overlay instead of external web browser (there is an issue when external web browser is opened though Buildmark it will set it to endless "Running" state in Steam and prevent it to be closed by normal means).
    • Ray tracing Tier 1,2 and 3 were tweaked to increase reflections quality and thus fix reflective materials appearance (black or weird looking). To compensate performance drop from increased reflections quality shadow distance for Tier 1, 2 and 3 was decreased. Hope this trade off will be more visually appealing.
    • Added Buildmark EULA. Necessary evil ...
    • Added option to prevent sending benchmarking data (score, GPU model, steam username) to Steam Leaderboards. This option can be found on the new benchmarking settings screen that will appear after "Benchmark" button was pressed in main menu.
    • New default avatar. Still WIP but it's more funny than that "thing" from before.
    • Minor improvements to increase speed & reduce memory usage when loading save file in Build mode.
    • Fixed last issue with Escape menu - it was not blocking Item icons from object/material spawn panels in Build mode.
    • Minor improvements to phrasing on panels with missions descriptions.

    Features added:
    - Benchmark: added on-line Leaderboards for benchmarking results. You can access them from Buildmark benchmarking results page ("Leaderboards" button). GPU-specific leaderboards appears with delay (manual activation required from my side).
    - Build mode: library expansion - added light sources (point/spot/area lights) as spawnable objects. Scale them on all axis to change brightness. Spotlights angle can be adjusted by scaling only on green axis (super rough for now).
    - Build mode: library expansion - added volumetric fog (square/gradient/sphere) as spawnable object. Scale it to cover needed area.


    Minor improvements:
    - Build mode: removed lag on open/close build menu categories.
    - Build mode: Fixed hardcore Termination tool bug (deleting first spawned object of a kind will remove ALL related objects/materials).
    - Build mode: "Undo" operation now works on image billboards and video displays.
    - Build mode: Reduced VRAM consumption in building process (not perfect, but better).

    - Benchmark: Added text "X1, x2 ... x5" on "SPORT" trophies. Now this "SPORT" sign makes more sense.
    - Benchmark: Returned button "Screenshot" (Steam screenshot this time).
    - Benchmark: Added button "Reset history" (under the history spreadsheet).
    - Benchmark: Polished visuals / element placement on the benchmarking results screen.
    - Benchmark: Added "DIFF" indicator to benchmarking scene (near 'Score'), showing DIFFerence between your current run and your best result.
    - Benchmark: Hiding/showing avatar by button now happens without any lag.
    - Benchmark: Fixed incorrect display of RTX 2060 video memory (was rounded to 5GB instead of 6GB).
    - Benchmark: Added rough & unofficial support for non-wide screen monitors on benchmarking results page (previously tech specs and other UI elements at left/right sides were cropped).

    - Common: FPS indicator now stays blue in Main menu and benchmarking results scene (because it's annoying when it shows red/yellow 30 fps while that low fps is just forced there to prevent too much heat/noise from PC.
    - Common: Changing focus from Buildmark to another app (Alt + Tab) now won't reset video player to beginning.
    - Common: VRAM consumption reduced when user images re-applied on the same billboard twice or more.
    - Common: "Reset object materials" on image billboard now resets it's scale to default value.
    - Common: Tweaked scale tool speed (not its acts more natural & handy when you using specific axis to scale). Added limits on max and min scale (to avoid PhysX crash/visual glitches).

    - Removed OS version from benchmarking results screen (guess it's not secure to share this kind information, at least if Windows was not updated for a while).
    - Removed native screenshot function (now when you press 'F12' only Steam overlay, if enabled, will capture screenshot in *.jpg).
    - "Screenshot" button was removed from benchmarking results screen, hotkey is enough for now.
    - If you need screenshot in *.png file format (lossless) use Ctrl + F12, it will be stored in game folder. Steam will capture it's jpg version too, duplication but that is it for now.

    - Benchmark runs 20% faster (volumetric fog was removed - almost undetectable anyway).
    - Benchmarking results screen design improved.
    - Build mode: fixed bug with "black rectangle" on text billboard.
    - "Alt + minus key" function was improved (now it's using scene-specific Tier5 settings).
     
    Last edited: May 3, 2021
    PutridEx, viking81, ADNCG and 4 others like this.
  2. Lex4art

    Lex4art

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2012
    Posts:
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    Buildmark patches 2021.1B.jpg

    - Benchmark runs 20% faster (volumetric fog was removed - almost undetectable anyway).
    - Benchmarking results screen design improved.
    - Build mode: fixed bug with "black rectangle" on text billboard.
    - "Alt + minus key" function was improved (now it's using scene-specific Tier5 settings).

    And here are some benchmarking results - my dev config with stock GPU/CPU clocks:
    Lex4art best score Buildmark 2021.1d.jpg

    P.S. If somebody have new AMD 6xxx series videocard (6800, 6800XT, 6900XT) - please, contact me (volunteers needed to test Buildmark compatibility & AMD ray tracing support, I will send you a free Steam key).
     
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2021
  3. Yanus3D

    Yanus3D

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    Cool! Soon I will test your software!
     
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  4. Yanus3D

    Yanus3D

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    My score :)
    Fantastic idea ...I really enjoy play!
    Buildmark v2021.1b 29-01-2021 1.jpg Buildmark v2021.1b _ 29-01-2021 7.jpg Buildmark v2021.1b _ 29-01-2021 3.jpg
     

    Attached Files:

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  5. Lex4art

    Lex4art

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    Thanks for live feedback ). In benchmarking results RTX 3090 probably held back by single-thread CPU performance but anyway 5.5K is a very nice to plank to reach.
     
  6. Yanus3D

    Yanus3D

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    Lex4art Yes this is due my low frequency Dual Xeon CPU...and as single core is not speed monster ;)
     
  7. m0nsky

    m0nsky

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    My score on a 7700K + RTX 3080. :D

     
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2021
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  8. mgear

    mgear

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    nice, i guess higher cpu core speed would help alot.
    upload_2021-1-30_14-24-12.png
     
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  9. Yanus3D

    Yanus3D

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    Yes, in my case: bottleneck :D
     
  10. Lex4art

    Lex4art

    Joined:
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    Posts:
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    Buildmark patches 2021.1C.jpg

    - Removed OS version from benchmarking results screen (guess it's not secure to share this kind information, at least if Windows was not updated for a while).
    - Removed native screenshot function (now when you press 'F12' only Steam overlay, if enabled, will capture screenshot in *.jpg).
    - "Screenshot" button was removed from benchmarking results screen, hotkey is enough for now.
    - If you need screenshot in *.png file format (lossless) use Ctrl + F12, it will be stored in game folder. Steam will capture it's jpg version too, duplication but that is it for now.

    Impressive, you reached gold 4-star trophy on just 3080 ). Unity still single threaded in general... seems this is the case for mgear - best result so far but GPU probably can do more (well, a bit more - 82RT cores VS 68RT cores at higher clock) but even 9900K can't provide. Will see if somebody can reach 8K for 5 star trophy XD - maybe upcoming Intel CPUs or even AMDs 5xxxx at 4.8Ghz+ can provide enough juice for overclocked GPU.

    P.S. on benchmarking results screen you can render your trophies in better quality - switch between ray tracing Tiers save way as in game - Ctrl + 1 for lowest/fastest and up to Ctrl + 9 for maximum DXR quality. And Ctrl + 0 for path tracing (now it's working properly - text not disappears, brightness is better).

    P.S.S. Meh, 3-star trophies lighting is way too dark, need to fix that...
     
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2021
    keeponshading likes this.
  11. mgear

    mgear

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    disabled hyperthreading, not much difference
    upload_2021-1-30_16-36-3.png
     
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  12. Lex4art

    Lex4art

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    Nov 17, 2012
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    Seems that Intel's HT is well developed and not causing much harm for peak performance. But this little bit of improvement still nice thing to have :).

    For those who are willing to express themselves - here is a video tutorial about how to setup own avatar & name to be visible on the benchmarking results page:
     
    Last edited: Feb 15, 2021
  13. Yanus3D

    Yanus3D

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    Lex4art
    It just hit me a few days ago: can you check that benchmark is standard with screen resolution?
    I have 2560x1080 screen resolution and I am afraid that Benchmark was tested on that size but other people in FullHD (for example)...so this bring different scores.
     
    Lex4art likes this.
  14. Lex4art

    Lex4art

    Joined:
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    Posts:
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    Buildmark patches 2021.1D.jpg

    Features added:
    - Benchmark: added on-line Leaderboards for benchmarking results. You can access them from Buildmark benchmarking results page ("Leaderboards" button). GPU-specific leaderboards appears with delay (manual activation required from my side).
    - Build mode: library expansion - added light sources (point/spot/area lights) as spawnable objects. Scale them on all axis to change brightness. Spotlights angle can be adjusted by scaling only on green axis (super rough for now).
    - Build mode: library expansion - added volumetric fog (square/gradient/sphere) as spawnable object. Scale it to cover needed area.

    Minor improvements:
    - Build mode: removed lag on open/close build menu categories.
    - Build mode: Fixed hardcore bug with Termination tool - deleting first spawned object of a kind will remove ALL related objects/materials.
    - Build mode: "Undo" operation now works on image billboards and video displays.
    - Build mode: Reduced VRAM consumption in building process (not perfect, but better).

    - Benchmark: Added text "X1, x2 ... x5" on "SPORT" trophies. Now this "SPORT" sign makes more sense.
    - Benchmark: Returned button "Screenshot" (Steam screenshot this time).
    - Benchmark: Added button "Reset history" (under the history spreadsheet).
    - Benchmark: Polished visuals / element placement on the benchmarking results screen.
    - Benchmark: Added "DIFF" indicator to benchmarking scene (near 'Score'), showing DIFFerence between your current run and your best result.
    - Benchmark: Hiding/showing avatar by button now happens without any lag.
    - Benchmark: Fixed incorrect display of RTX 2060 video memory (was rounded to 5GB instead of 6GB).
    - Benchmark: Added rough & unofficial support for non-wide screen monitors on benchmarking results page (previously tech specs and other UI elements at left/right sides were cropped).

    - Common: FPS indicator now stays blue in Main menu and benchmarking results scene (because it's annoying when it shows red/yellow 30 fps while that low fps is just forced there to prevent too much heat/noise from PC.
    - Common: Changing focus from Buildmark to another app (Alt + Tab) now won't reset video player to beginning.
    - Common: VRAM consumption reduced when user images re-applied on the same billboard twice or more.
    - Common: "Reset object materials" on image billboard now resets it's scale to default value.
    - Common: Tweaked scale tool speed (not its acts more natural & handy when you using specific axis to scale). Added limits on max and min scale (to avoid PhysX crash/visual glitches).

    Here is a video about volumetric fog density volumes and light sources that arrived with this 2021.1d patch:


    This is covered (but thanks for notice anyway!) - internally benchmark scene always rendered at 2560x1080 resolution using render to texture feature and only this rendered texture displayed to user camera were upscaled/downscaled to actual users monitor resolutions, so it's resolution-agnostic and results are correct in any case (but output image may be blurry even if your monitor has same 2560x1080 resolution as rendered texture - I can't make pixel-perfect output from rendered texture to user camera).
     
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2021
  15. Yanus3D

    Yanus3D

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    Lex4art 2021.1d patch looks great!
     
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  16. mgear

    mgear

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    could the results screen be non-ray traced / static image only?
    (i started the test, forgot it was running, went to eat.. came back to the room, it was pretty warm out there.. :D )

    and how about using steam leaderboards?
     
  17. Lex4art

    Lex4art

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    Sounds actual and reasonable - something like get screenshot, stop rendering and show this screenshot of the scene if mouse was not moved for a short period of time. Hope it won't be so hard to implement with small patch... Added to my "to do" list.

    Fully static solution is not the option - there are plans to improve results scene (add some animated lights/objects and so on).

    About Steam leaderboards - implemented with this last patch 2021.1d. They're using Steam name instead of that was set in Play/Build mode lobby (there is now way to change that). But don't expect much - there are almost no one to compete with. Technically Buildmark is released but there are maybe few thousands people in the whole world who knows about it - Steam don't promote Early Access games at all and I'm slowly switching my brain to wrap around this new and unfamiliar promotion challenge. With recent patch benchmarking part of Buildmark feels good enough to start spreading the word within popular overclocking communities - will try to do that this week, even if it won't be easy because it's not free to try... Also, I need to check out Steam default EULA - is it protects me from cases of hardware dies while user was playing/benchmarking or I need to create my own EULA... Entrepreneur stuff, heh.
     
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2021
  18. Lex4art

    Lex4art

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    Buildmark patches 2021.1E.jpg

    • Added "Power saving mode" (after 45 seconds of inactivity it will be turned on - lowest graphics settings + 3 fps max cap).
    • Benchmark Leaderboards now opening inside Steam overlay instead of external web browser (there is an issue when external web browser is opened though Buildmark it will set it to endless "Running" state in Steam and prevent it to be closed by normal means).
    • Ray tracing Tier 1,2 and 3 were tweaked to increase reflections quality and thus fix reflective materials appearance (black or weird looking). To compensate performance drop from increased reflections quality shadow distance for Tier 1, 2 and 3 was decreased. Hope this trade off will be more visually appealing.
    • Added Buildmark EULA. Necessary evil ...
    • Added option to prevent sending benchmarking data (score, GPU model, steam username) to Steam Leaderboards. This option can be found on the new benchmarking settings screen that will appear after "Benchmark" button was pressed in main menu.
    • New default avatar. Still WIP but it's more funny than that "thing" from before.
    • Minor improvements to increase speed & reduce memory usage when loading save file in Build mode.
    • Fixed last issue with Escape menu - it was not blocking Item icons from object/material spawn panels in Build mode.
    • Minor improvements to phrasing on panels with missions descriptions.

    Upd: There was a delay - now it should be live, finally.
     
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2021
    mgear likes this.
  19. Yanus3D

    Yanus3D

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  20. Lex4art

    Lex4art

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    And another patch (2021.1f):
    • Hotfix for graphics settings auto-detection script that can force lowest graphics settings (Tier1) no matter the actual hardware. Now it works properly, new auto-detection will be performed on start to find & set fair graphics settings.
    If graphics was suspiciously poor - probably it's because of this bug. Ugh, for how long it was there _-_ ...
     
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2021
  21. Lex4art

    Lex4art

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    Last edited: Feb 23, 2021
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  22. Lex4art

    Lex4art

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    After 2.5 weeks of work (+1 week on localization means) new UI is almost there - with all tools available at once it's a bit confusing but for Play mode it won't be the case (only limited set of tools will be there, full set is only for Build mode). Hope you like it:
     
  23. PutridEx

    PutridEx

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    I wish I had Ray Tracing capable hardware. :(
    It looks fun & interesting to mess around with. Cool project! (Also, HDRP! yay!)
     
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  24. Lex4art

    Lex4art

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    Here are some progress on this hardcore 2021.1g patch. What is already done:
    - New Q.E.R.F.C.T. UI - simple, based on scrolling icons with mouse and still fast enough. And it's unificated between Play & Build modes as much as possible.
    - Fixed Tier detection happens twice.
    - Minor sound improvements (added 'select/deselect object' sound, replaced annoying 'apply material' high pitch sound to new one and so on).
    - In Build mode now there is an option to spawn object with "snap to grid" (in horizontal coordinates) 0.25m/1m. Hope this thing will allow to place object in modular-like way without tons of problems that modular assets with pre-defined snap points have.
    - New sub-tool for build mode - "reset position". Roundup horizontal *world* coordinates of selected object to nearest 0.25m.
    - Crosshair is more informative about current tool, it's modifiers and selection status.
    - Added scrollbars in Build mode for spawn/material panels.
    - Added scrollbars for saved games list in main menu.
    - Added 'Tier 0' graphics quality - draft mode (hotkey is Ctrl + ~). It's using screen space GI & reflections & AO instead of ray tracing; only shadows are ray traced.
    - Effects menu panel (hotkey F3) for switching special effects like DoF and chromatic aberrations.
    - Weather menu panel (hotkey F2) for tweaking sun angle/direction (later there will be weather settings/presets but for now it's only about sun).
    - Settings menu panel (hotkey F1) for switching ray tracing quality presets (Tiers), screen rendering resolution, sound volume, mouse sensitivity, vsync.
    - Teleporters now working on one hotkey 'V' instead of F1/F2/F4/F4. Teleporters can be duplicated - each time you press 'V' there will be teleportation to next teleporter available.
    - Changed 3D text generation asset to a new, better one - https://forum.unity.com/threads/released-glyphmeshz-3d-text-mesh-generator.858316 . It's possible to enter player name (that is above your avatar in game) in any supported characters - no more "English only" restriction.
    - Added means for localization of Buildmark - just edit provided text file (supported ~582 languages, including simplified Chinese, Japanese, Korean and Thai) and put it in the same folder were Buildmark.exe is located.
    - In Build mode you can press 'spacebar' to gain height and 'Ctrl + spacebar' to lower down.
    - Added flashlight (hotkey 'G'). In 'Night challenge' its not available from start but can be found as pickable item there.
    - Improved simplicity and friendliness of Play mode lobby & Build mode lobby scenes.


    And what is in needed to be finished:
    - Fix Avatar physics bug (you can "walk on walls" by pressing jump near wall).
    - Add localization for image/video billboards text (about how to add own image/video there); tricky because this text is the part of texture...
    - Some usability improvements + feedback info while scrolling through dozens of spawn/material icons in Play mode.
    - Add one achievement - nothing special, it's only about rewarding early adopters of Buildmark who did run version 2021.1
    - Add new video for main menu screen - new UI requires new video to avoid confusion.
    - Add new screenshots with new UI for Steam page. Ugh, so many strings attached with new UI...
    - Add stairs asset to Play mode in Night challenge.
    - Add City block template scene for Build mode. Raw and simple, but for now it will do the job + some city assets to the spawnable objects library.
    - Add simple tutorial scene for build mode.

    And all that I've planned to make in a two weeks... a month ago. Heh )
     
    Last edited: Mar 31, 2021
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  25. Lex4art

    Lex4art

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    Last edited: Apr 21, 2021
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  26. Lex4art

    Lex4art

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    Buildmark 2021.2 public beta now available (more like pre-alpha, but XD...). Currently the only difference between latest 2021.1g and this one is new bright theme for 3D background scenes in Main menu, Play mode lobby and Build mode lobby:
    20210502112154_1.jpg
    20210502112213_1.jpg
    20210502112446_1.jpg

    Also there is a quick and super dirty sketch of the third challenge - Desert (you can find it in Play mode lobby, unlocks after Art challenge is finished).
     
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  27. Lex4art

    Lex4art

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    Buildmark hotfix.jpg
    A micro-update was added to 2021.1g version of the game:
    - Fixed bug when player can't jump while standing still.
    - Player movement improved - no more sudden halts when running on the stairs.
    - Reduced height of players physbox (now you won't stuck while moving under the trees in Build mode for example).
    - Auto-detection script (that searches for optimal graphics Tier on Bulidmark startup) was improved.
    - Graphics Tier 1 and Tier 2 works much faster because there non ray traced shadows are used, but this comes with a price because there will be no more semi-transparent shadows from glass on those Tiers. Hope this was good trade off.
    - Quality of ray traced shadows gradually increases from Tier 3 (1 sample per pixel) to Tier 8 (12 samples). So, less noise & more smoothness for shadows on higher Tiers but with a price of performance. Previously there was always 4 samples per pixel - not good enough for quality and not fast enough for low Tiers.
    - Removed black outline from inner part of the progress bar in Play mode.
     
  28. Lex4art

    Lex4art

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    m0nsky likes this.
  29. Lex4art

    Lex4art

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    Buildmark hotfix.jpg
    A micro-update was added to 2021.1g version of the game:
    - Thanks to keeponshading for pointing on the problem, now fixed endless "loading" when spawning assets/materials in Build mode. (Addressables where not built successfully, without any errors or warnings. Updating on latest Unity 2021.1f9 fixed that).
    - Fixed "Play" button appearance in main menu (when there are no saves available).
     
    Last edited: May 28, 2021
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  30. Lex4art

    Lex4art

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  31. Lex4art

    Lex4art

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    Note that Buildmark beta 6 now available. It brings very first & raw DLSS implementation - super unstable, but for the sake of curiosity you can try it now ).
    20210607105109_1.jpg
     
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  32. Lex4art

    Lex4art

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    So, what has been done in July? In general my random development process ended up with "fix technical debt & make interface even more friendly":
    • All billboards now have simple icon-based UI (instead of wall of text with instructions how to add image on them) plus every type of billboard now can be used to play video (with timeline & sound volume controls and even multi-track audio somewhat supported). Now those billboards and displays merged into one type of objects - "Media panels". Here is how it looks:
    • Undo, finally, can revoke up to 40 actions, including those on linked FBX meshes:
    • Internal save/load system improvements for Play/Build modes allowing storing player-defined features like material color. Finally I can get rid of endless variations of the very same material just in dozen of different colors that spam material inventory right now.
    • Some minor improvements here and there (like in Play mode lobby on panel for each chapter there will be displayed amount of items you discovered in this level and how many still hidden).
    That's all that has been done for last 3.5 weeks of full time work - I'm still poor at estimates of how many strings attached to each change... So, Buildmark 2021.2 beta 9 is not released yet - too many technical things still needed to be fixed to work with those changes above + I hope to have this beta 9 released with some more improvements to ease of use/performance department:
    • Simplify Q.E.R.F.C.T. tools to Q.E.F. - so only 3 hotkeys to keep in mind:
      Q key - spawn inventory.
      E key - material inventory.
      F key - panel with all edit tools available.
    • On this edit tools panel there will be only one icon for Rotate, one for Move and one Scale tool. All tool-specific features (like switching between world/local space movement/rotation, gizmo mode, snap to angle/value mode, snap to surface or drag object) - all this will be merged into tool-specific icons, appearing on selected object that we intended to edit with current tool.
    • Create multi-line "console" (that feedback text appearing at the bottom of the screen) with different colors for normal, error and system messages.
    • Create visual effect in UI for each tool you found (to help find new hotkey for that tool, appearing at the bottom of the screen).

    Also, thanks to Unity team, there are substantial improvements implemented for ray tracing denoiser algorithm: more speed & more quality. This requires some work to re-tweak tons of ray tracing profiles on my side but it's totally worth it!

    Also, previous month I've found major bug that may randomly appear and reduce performance 2-3 times when video memory is filled on 80-95% and any other application (like web browser or Steam client) are present in background. If that is confirmed (so it's not a local problem on my machine) and fixed - this can bring very substantial performance boost for Buildmark, because it's memory hungry and every videocard with less than 12GB of video memory is randomly affected by this problem.

    And the last thing I've planned for this upcoming beta 9 is recently added to Unity "AMD FidelityFX Super Resolution" - another DLSS-like speed booster for ray-tracing capable hardware.

    Stay turned, this summer is not that fun as I hoped for, but technical problems being solved and things finally can be pushed further in terms of graphics/content/building features.
     
    Last edited: Aug 7, 2021
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  33. keeponshading

    keeponshading

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    Great progress.

    Can you give me some insides about the three rendering. Shaders used and which raytrace settings (volume overrides) and so on.
     
  34. Lex4art

    Lex4art

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    Mostly it's two standard HDRP shaders (Lit for normal materials and Unlit for non-transparent emissive). Only special thing with shaders is custom semi-transparent hologram shader (done in Unity via Shader graph using Unlit shader output configuration) - because it's using semi-transparency it's completely ignored by ray tracing. But with additional C# script that automatically makes a copy of object with that hologram shader, placing it on special layer that Player camera cannot see but this layer visible for ray traced GI/Reflections, and changing shader transparency mode to "opaque" - that makes this invisible and not transparent copy of the hologram involved in to ray tracing (fake way, but good enough - fake invisible object emits light to the scene and appear in reflecitons on the place where original semi-transparent material should be visible).

    Volume overrides - right now messed up (re-tweaking it for latest GitHub master branch/trying to create one set of settings that fits all my scenes and waiting for new PR with those ray terminate options to get rid from my own tricky setup with pure black reflection probe that makes sky reflection go away). Best way to share them is to create a simple demo scene but this I can provide later, when all those new changes arrive in official beta version of Unity.
     
    Last edited: Aug 7, 2021
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  35. keeponshading

    keeponshading

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    Thanks for the detailed info. The result justifies the effort.)

    The thing i don t get is the black reflection probe. You also added it to the 424 demo and i could not find out what it does.


    fyi
    Great things happen here.
    Played since some months with it and it became nicely usable now.
    Some nice HDRP DXR Screenshots at the end of the page.

    https://github.com/freezy/VisualPinball.Engine/wiki/Unity-Screenshots

    Meantime there is an HDRP and URP implementations to generate all these pinnball sims from old Visual Pinball definitions out of thin air in Unity.
    The physics engine has been ported to DOTS and most of the meshes of the game items are procedurally generated. Some really stunning concepts behind and a great learning ressource.
    see here
    https://docs.visualpinball.org/creators-guide/introduction/features.html

    code here
    https://github.com/freezy/VisualPinball.Engine

    more infos in the forum:
    https://www.vpforums.org/index.php?showtopic=43651
     
    Last edited: Aug 7, 2021
  36. Lex4art

    Lex4art

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    Originally tricky scene setup in several places + this black probe can solve issue "bright sky reflected on any glossy object inside dark room" - instead of bright reflections there will be pure black (not that realistic, but better than before). This probably not needed for open world car racing game - focus on car and try to disable this black reflection probe: if nothing happens visually - it can be removed.

    Impressive in its own way ). DOTS physics/hardcore programming a bit too cool for me right now, noted for the future as reference.
     
  37. Lex4art

    Lex4art

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    Overview of the first year since initial Early Access release - a lot of mistakes were found, but my level of adequacy in game development slowly rising.
     
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2022
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  38. Lex4art

    Lex4art

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    News and update on Buildmark roadmap & stuff. Ugh, life is challenging but when it was easy.

    P.S. Now Routine game project is back to life... hell, even Reset gives some signs of activity!