Search Unity

  1. Get the latest news, tutorials and offers directly to your inbox with our newsletters. Sign up now.
    Dismiss Notice

[Feedback] ImageSequencer (version f1 - 20161101)

Discussion in 'VFX Toolbox' started by ThomasVFX, Oct 28, 2016.

  1. ThomasVFX

    ThomasVFX

    Unity Technologies

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2016
    Posts:
    43
    Hi Everyone!

    This thread is the official feedback thread for ImageSequencer version f1.
    This version of ImageSequencer can be downloaded here.

    Feel free to post any feedback, in this thread.

    Known Issues:
    • Does not work currently on editor using DX9 / DX12 backends
    • Performance issues on Windows OpenGLCore (prefer DX11 for now)
     
    Last edited: Oct 28, 2016
  2. Kevin-VFX

    Kevin-VFX

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2016
    Posts:
    13
    Looking good so far, offsets a lot of my script work from Nuke into unity. I'll have more constructive feedback soon with some use.

    I personally would love to have some built in frame interpolation support in addition. I built my own shaders to do such a thing which even support parallaxing, but right now doesn't directly support particle systems. A seamlessly integrated version that works with the image sequencer would improve my workflow tremendously.

    Here's someone's example of what I'm talking about. http://www.klemenlozar.com/frame-blending-with-motion-vectors/
     
  3. Player7

    Player7

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2015
    Posts:
    1,535
    Perhaps not a feature for the image sequencer per se, but yeh having saw the demo of it at unite, I also think it would be a good idea to support optical flow which is what its also called with frame to frame blending in the texture sheet animation of the particle editor... that way we don't need to add lots of extra frames in the image sequencer to get smoothness in the animation at runtime.
     
  4. ThomasVFX

    ThomasVFX

    Unity Technologies

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2016
    Posts:
    43
    Yes indeed both linear frame interpolation and optical flow interpolation are features we have in our backlogs, since increasing frame count is not a good solution. In 5.5 there is a particle shader (Anim Alpha Blended) that does frame interpolation. It requires a bit of configuration in shuriken as seen in this gif :

    http://i.imgur.com/AHKpmER.gif

    Also, the optical flow generation is part of our R&D, and we will eventually come up with a full robust pipeline for It, so you can expect having this kind of feature in the future.
     
  5. Player7

    Player7

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2015
    Posts:
    1,535
    cool cool
     
  6. Kevin-VFX

    Kevin-VFX

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2016
    Posts:
    13
    Oh nice. Good to know basic linear frame blending has been added. I look forward to the optical flow interpolation. A texture that's interpolated using motion vectors is way more convincing in VR due to the high framerates required.
     
  7. Stardog

    Stardog

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2010
    Posts:
    1,638
    Will some type of Fog or Contour be added? Using the old Global Fog doesn't make sense.
     
  8. ThomasVFX

    ThomasVFX

    Unity Technologies

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2016
    Posts:
    43
  9. Stardog

    Stardog

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2010
    Posts:
    1,638
  10. Jingle-Fett

    Jingle-Fett

    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2009
    Posts:
    573
    Yes! I'm absolutely thrilled about this feature. I've been using flipbooks for the VFX in my game to great success for stuff like explosions and fire, so having a tool inside Unity like this is greatly appreciated!

    @ThomasVFX I haven't tried the tool yet but I have a question. How would the Frame Processor Stack work if you needed multiple passes? For example if you made an explosion effect, but also rendered out a normals pass so it could be relit, a depth pass, emission, etc. Is there any way to "sync" or copy the frame processors stack so the same effect gets applied to all the passes? Like if you re-timed the color pass and needed to apply the exact same effect to the other passes.
     
  11. Dudledok

    Dudledok

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2013
    Posts:
    110
    Can this be used for existing sprite sheets? So you have your original flipbook and you generate new ones from that based on your new time curves / whatever instead of needing an image sequence.
     
  12. jack-riddell

    jack-riddell

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2014
    Posts:
    326
    Hi i have been building a bunch of Image editing / processing scripts for my Normal Mapped Particle packages here
    https://www.assetstore.unity3d.com/en/#!/content/68445
    https://www.assetstore.unity3d.com/en/#!/content/60561

    The textures I use in these packages often require custom post processing like vector normalization.
    The final game ready textures are often a composite of several input textures like a normal map,emissive map and transparency map.
    How in depth are you planing to go with custom scripting?
    Will you have multi texture / texture compositing support?
    When processing large textures especially on a single core performance can be quite bad how are you planing on optimizing this and will there be easy api's for custom scripts to bolt into that take advantage of multi core processing?
     
  13. ThomasVFX

    ThomasVFX

    Unity Technologies

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2016
    Posts:
    43
    Yes absolutely, there is a Break Flipbook procesor that takes as input an already assembled spritesheet and divides it into a sequence of images, so you can process them, retime, crop, optimize, then finally assemble again and export the result into a brand new optimized flipbook texture sheet.
     
  14. ThomasVFX

    ThomasVFX

    Unity Technologies

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2016
    Posts:
    43
    Hey, cool stuff ! :)

    For custom scripting we have some leads at the moment but nothing ready yet, so you can expect something eventually.

    For the performance issues, the ImageSequencer processes only little stuff on CPU : the processors are shader-based so the performance mostly depends on your GPU. Still, we do not advise low end or laptop graphics cards for processing large data.
     
  15. ThomasVFX

    ThomasVFX

    Unity Technologies

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2016
    Posts:
    43
    Hey, thanks for all the kind words :)

    (this answer is also related to @jack-riddell 's question so I'm wrapping up)

    Good question indeed : For now the sequencer only supports one sequence of images per template, so for now there is no way to factorize settings for multiple sequences. We have stuff to research in this way to achieve a simple and efficient pipeline, so maybe It should eventually come, but no promises yet ;)
     
    Last edited: Nov 10, 2016
    VeronikaF and Jingle-Fett like this.
  16. bigSky

    bigSky

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2011
    Posts:
    114
    Just a word to support this tool - it's very well organized, clear workflow that cuts out a number of steps, and is easily integrated. Saved me time.
     
  17. AcidArrow

    AcidArrow

    Joined:
    May 20, 2010
    Posts:
    7,567
    The crop tool should have an "auto" function. Where it goes through all the frames, finds their smallest bounds (based on transparency) for each one and then keeps the largest.
     
    laurentlavigne likes this.
  18. jack-riddell

    jack-riddell

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2014
    Posts:
    326
    After a bit of testing here are a few things that I think needs some changes.

    The loop tool is very confusing and for some reason removes half the frames in the process. you should be able to put in an image sequence of 25 images and get back a 25 image sequence that can be looped.

    Adding and reorganizing image sequences is needlessly time consuming. Being able to drag in a folder is nice but without the ability to group select, delete or re order images makes working with long image sequences a pain. The image import tool needs the ability to easily reverse the order of the selected images.

    Colour correction tools need temporal control. With image sequences like flames or smoke I often needed to tweak the colours for only one section of the sequence but leave the rest of the sequence unchanged.

    Finally the save system is a bit annoying. It should open in the folder that the image sequence script object is in, should have the same name as the image sequence script object and the save directory should be editable in the file name text field in the script object editor.

    Its a nice tool and definitely a lot more polished than the tools i have been hacking together but their is still a lot of functionality missing. With a tool like this it is very all or nothing ether it can do what you need or you have to write your own from scratch.

    anyway i hoped this helps and i look forward to seeing how this tool develops.
     
  19. ThomasVFX

    ThomasVFX

    Unity Technologies

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2016
    Posts:
    43
    Hi @jack-riddell , thanks for your feedback and your time for all these, helps a lot.

    Indeed some of your comments totally makes sense, here are some comments and thoughts about it :

    Currently, the functionality of the reorderable lists with a lot of images is currently the bare minimum, we are assessing if we would add macros or request more UX on the GUI component (for instance multi selection, sorting,etc), but for the time being I think adding a menu with options to reverse order and sort would be a good start.

    Regarding the behavior of the looping processor, what you say makes a point but looping a 25 frame sequence over 25 input frames produces temporal tiling (as the sync point of the sequence is repeated twice), that's why we eluded this case and assumed the needs would be at least twice the frames to produce proper looping. Anyway, we could add an option (or a dedicated processor) for people who still want to do this anyway.

    Color correction tools are currently using a single parameter for the whole sequence but indeed this parameter could be sampled from a curve (just like the fade does), so I guess either an improvement of the existing or a new processor 'over time' would help.

    For the file output, we will not go through such a error-prone system such as simply editing a string, as It has more implications as it looks like. Anyhow, you have a point regarding the default folder and naming of the file and would not be too much to be fixed :)
     
  20. jack-riddell

    jack-riddell

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2014
    Posts:
    326

    Thanks for the reply. I understand the need for some extra frames to lead in to the looping seam but requiring double the total frame count is a bit excessive especially for long image sequences. I made this looping sequence using 32 source frames looped over 25 output frames. To get it to work with your looping system i ended up duplicating the first frame in the sequence 18 times.
    TriAxisFire12Logo1.gif
    While this is not the best loop ever made I think you can see that far fewer extra frames are needed for looping.
    Smoke assets can take a long time to compute and render, in some cases 10 + minutes per frame. If i have a 128 frame sequence that is a full day of rendering, doubling that to two days for an extra 128 frames that will barely be seen is a bit excessive.

    With my image editing tools I use the following save address layout.
    Save File address.png
    while not as polished It has a lot better functionality than the current unity save system.
    You drag a file or folder into the Save Directory field and the property drawer converts it to a string address for the folder. When saving a file the Save Directory address is combined with the File Name to produce the final output location.

    One issue I run into a lot with the current system is that when I want to duplicate a file and make small changes like change the colour of a flame or the length of the image sequence I have to go through the whole saving process again. By having the file name separate and easily editable in my system improves the iteration time greatly.

    anyway I hope this helps.
     
  21. ThomasVFX

    ThomasVFX

    Unity Technologies

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2016
    Posts:
    43
    I see what you mean for the looping, in this case this is different as you use 7 more frames that will be used for transition (which is low but seems enough for your effect). For this kind of case, we could unlock the sequence length, and clamp indices from start or the end of the sequence (reproducing what you do by duplicating frames) so It would behave the same way as you want. In this case a warning would be provided to indicate that the leading or trailing indices would be clamped, this is a bit tricky and we will look to make it more understandable and elegant.

    For the file names, I think the problem lies in a lack of UX rather than using a bare unsafe string editor. We will look to improve the save file dialog (especially when re-saving or adding a default location and consistent file name) so the process goes more smoothly. :)

    Thanks for all your feedback and your time.
     
    VeronikaF, TG9999 and jack-riddell like this.
  22. TG9999

    TG9999

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2017
    Posts:
    1
    @ThomasVFX By "re-saving" you mean that Unity will recognize changes to the file at its original location (and not in the Unity folder into which Unity imported it)? That would be a huge time saver.
     
  23. AliceBl

    AliceBl

    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2017
    Posts:
    2
    Can you already estimate when optical flow textures will become available?
    Should we post this an idea on the Unity Feedback board, or is it already on the way?
     
    Kevin-VFX likes this.
  24. FireIce987

    FireIce987

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2018
    Posts:
    7
    Is this tool still in active development?
     
  25. Reanimate_L

    Reanimate_L

    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2009
    Posts:
    2,465
    @ThomasVFX ^This, any update about this tool? is it included in package manager now?
    Please don't let another good tools fall into the limbo
     
  26. MadeFromPolygons

    MadeFromPolygons

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2013
    Posts:
    3,075
    Please finish stuff you start unity. This is unfinished currently, but in development for 2 years or so
     
  27. hippocoder

    hippocoder

    Digital Ape Moderator

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2010
    Posts:
    26,918
    Hi, please don't hassle Unity staff. This is an experimental area and you're making zero sense. Take a break.
     
    NeatWolf likes this.
unityunity