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InfiniGRASS v2.0 - Next gen interactive & true non uniform volume grass, procedural worlds, pooling

Discussion in 'Works In Progress' started by nasos_333, Aug 24, 2015.

  1. nasos_333

    nasos_333

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    ARTnGame presents the next major asset, InfiniGRASS.

    The InfiniGRASS system can paint ultra detailed static or dynamic grass everywhere, without any limit in shape, form, shader or placement surface. The system provides true non uniform grass for absolute realism with incredible performance (GPU based).

    It is possible to apply any amount of grass anywhere, on objects or terrain. Based on a custom multithreaded LOD and AI system for ultimate performance and adaptability, from higher end systems to mobile (mutlicore is recommended).

    The grass may also be grown dynamically in real time and the player can interact with it, by chopping or stepping on it.

    The core system works on all platforms, but the grass shaders that will initially come with the pack are SM3.0 and the mobile varieties will come as a bonus later.

    InfiniGRASS is the ideal companion for Sky Master ULTIMATE and has been developed with the new Syy Master v3.0 update in mind, for perfect fit with the new Water/Ocean and Snow growth systems as well as Sky Master lighting and volumetric fog. Seasonal changes will also be enabled in InfiniGRASS once Sky Master v3.0 is released.

    Initially the system will come with 6 grass types and shader varieties (vertex and transparent based), an editor to place grass, real time placement option and a complete fence creation and rocks placement system.

    The pack will be submitted to the store this week.

    DEMOS:

    InfiniGRASS v1.1 NEW Demo - Multiple LODs - Per splat map scaling - new Brushes (rocks, mushrooms, wild grass, ground leaves) - Object follow mode
    https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/79230236/INFINIDY/INFINIGRASS/INFINIGRASS_PAINT_DEMO.html

    InfiniGRASS demo with Sky Master v3.0 Snow-Water-Sky-Rain
    https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/79230236/INFINIDY/INFINIGRASS/INFINIGRASS_SKYMASTER3_DEMO.html

    Instructions:
    -Paint grass with right mouse button and erase with left.
    -Paint fence with right click and stop painting with fence paint toggle button.
    -Paint rocks with right button, erase with left. 3rd rock type can be painted on itself !!!
    -Press "Interactive on" to plant interactive grass, use for tall grass and use "cast ball" toggle to cast balls on the grass. Use small brushes for best dynamic result.
    -The hero can also step on the grass (if balls are not activated)
    - Toggle snow and water (and rain in special FX) in Sky Master demo to see how these extra FX integrate with InfiniGRASS

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Round planets - InfiniGRASS fully supports any surface
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Grass Interaction - Before stepping on grass
    [​IMG]
    After stepping on grass
    [​IMG]

    Uber detailed grass
    [​IMG]

    Fully compatible with Sky Master ULTIMATE 3.0 (volume fog, image effects)
    [​IMG]

    Endless Fields, placed in editor or real time
    [​IMG]

    (Note: The pics are from WIP and the system has grown a lot since they were taken and is constantly polished for perfection. SpeedTree trees will not be included in the pack and can be downloaded from Unity store for free)

    Videos and images from the latest version will follow soon.

    All the grass, rocks and fencing in the images is placed/created with InfiniGRASS.

    Sky Master ULTIMATE customers will benefit from specially made shaders that support the new global snow coverage feature that will be included in the upcoming v3.0.
     
    Last edited: Oct 23, 2015
    Deon-Cadme, 00Fant, HakJak and 13 others like this.
  2. nasos_333

    nasos_333

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    [​IMG]

    The grass can be defined directly from prefabs. In the pic there is a combination of instantiated grass and flowers within the same grass type.
     
  3. -Singularity-

    -Singularity-

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    Looks good,

    Can you provide details regarding performance? How is this rendered? Is it dx11 only?
     
  4. nasos_333

    nasos_333

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    Extreme grass density crash test, the impact on CPU is minimal to non existent as it is all GPU based. I have this dense grass as a preset, it takes lots of ram though and this density is not needed to get good results, but is impressive for locally extreme thick low height grass.

    If ram is not an issue, the whole level can be filled with such density without much impact in fps (and the grass can be placed on any surface and orientation as well)
    [​IMG]

    It is DX9 and performance scales from extremely fast (static grass with shader based wind), to mid range (one interactor per frame) to heavier for stronger systems (multiple concurrent interactors) and depends a lot on the trade off between performance and LOD distances.

    When batched the grass motion is purely shader based, so it is super fast without much impact even with extreme grass density. The transparent variety will induce a bit more of rendering ms due to overdraw, but generally in low-mid grass height case this is not so evident.

    For interactive case, it is a trade off between draw distance, items per group and draw calls. The system batches items in groups of a certain number. If the item number is high, it takes more to open the batch for interaction (so you may experience a bigger local performance drop while interacting), but you have more items batched in a single group and thus lower draw calls when batched and not interacting. The LOD system will disable these groups after a distance or LOD them, so you can still choose to have lower items numbers for faster interaction and keep draw calls low, by lowering LOD distances.

    Generally the system is made for total control over the performance/looks trade off in the dynamic region. LOD supports smooth fade out.

    Adding grass in real time has very little impact, even while growing it in a temporal dynamic phase.

    The grass can be extremely easilly be customized and generally the system can be used to place anything with the same LOD system and grouping logic, so besides the grass, the imagination is the limit as to how else it can be used.

    Here is also a first video of the effect (WIP so some textures may seem off). Grass can be painted on any surface and in both the editor or real time (with real time growth as well).



    All my videos are recorded with Bandicam in my not so stellar old PC (intel Core 2 Duo), so there may be some skips when i am accessing the menu to control Sky Master sun etc, the effect is 100% smooth when playing without Bandicam. I will create a demo today and post for actual performance testing.
     
    Last edited: Aug 25, 2015
  5. nasos_333

    nasos_333

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    Empty level for comparisson
    [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    About the videos, unfortunately my PC is rather old so when i record with Bandicam the performance takes a huge drop, so videos are looking slow.

    Here is a comparisson for example, normally i get a smooth 14-16ms everywhere in the stage in the pic (in 1080p) and with bandicam ranges from 20ms-35ms (in 720p !!!).

    So the only solution is to export a demo, to showcase the performance (or grab me an extrernal video recorder that i have postponed for so long :) ).
     
    Last edited: Aug 25, 2015
  6. Xoduz

    Xoduz

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    Looks very nice!
    Does this mean I can paint grass on skinned characters? :p
     
  7. nasos_333

    nasos_333

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    :), sure, if they have a collider :)

    One note, the grass does not move with objects (like in Particle Dynamic Magic system for example), it can potentially move with objects (since in dynamic phase you can do anything with it, fully script it etc) but wont be practical for the massive grass use.

    But it will be a great idea to add such an option for local effects later.
     
  8. SAOTA

    SAOTA

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    This is is beautiful, would love to see how this adds to my arch viz scenes. Good job nasos_333
     
  9. nasos_333

    nasos_333

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    Thanks :)

    It is ideal for architectural i suppose, as there is total artistic freedom as far as grass textures/prefabs/assets go.

    Also it supports full shadows and self shadowing, that make a world of difference, with independent shadow LOD.

    The placement system can easilly be adjusted to create any kind of other foliage, like bushes or vines etc, with or without LOD and dynamics. I will be working on more specific shaders for such other bonus items after the initial release (though the grass shader may already be used with some tweaking to get a first nice result in vines etc)
     
    Last edited: Aug 25, 2015
  10. nasos_333

    nasos_333

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    Video with the heavy grass (still super fast, just takes more ram).

    The video is recorded with Bandicam (thus is not at all indicative of performance) and i also access the inspector to control the sun etc

     
  11. -Singularity-

    -Singularity-

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    Excellent! Thanks for the comprehensive answer, it's very much appreciated.

    What is the price :) ?
     
  12. nasos_333

    nasos_333

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    I am thinking of a lower price for early adopters (30-40$) and then move to $60 a few days after the release.
     
  13. -Singularity-

    -Singularity-

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    Delicious!
     
    nasos_333 likes this.
  14. nasos_333

    nasos_333

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    Sky Master ULTIMATE v3.0 - ocean and use with InfiniGRASS
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    Here is another demo i am working on, this will emulate see weed motion and uses Sky Master ULTIMATE 3.0 and its new Ocean module for the water and sky.

    Note that Bandicam makes the video look much slower on my old PC, the actual gameplay is very smooth. Also i had an error when recorded that video that made draw calls 10x the actual ones :) (320 actual, 2500 with the erroneous prefab), so this is only to show the look, for performance evaluation i will post a webplayer demo soon.

     
    spinnerbox likes this.
  15. nasos_333

    nasos_333

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    [​IMG]
    UPDATE:


    The GUI is now complete, all refinements are finished and the demo is the current WIP and will be done today, so the pack will be submitted by the end of the week.

    Also i just filled an entire map with super thick grass in real time, making this demo is super fun :)

    About the pack icon, i have created some but i am not sure which to put in yet. Any suggestions are welcome :).
     
    Last edited: Aug 26, 2015
  16. davisj16usmc

    davisj16usmc

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    I'd recommend the third icon in the second row. Looks great! I'm definitely buying.
     
  17. nasos_333

    nasos_333

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    With Sky Master ULTIMATE 3.0 Ocean-Water system[​IMG]After real time painting
    [​IMG]
    Before real time painting (starting grass painted in editor mode)[​IMG]
    Gradual snow gather in grass (and trees - terrain with Sky Master v3.0)[​IMG]
    Paint on any surface[​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    Thanks :), i cant wait to finilize it and see cool uses in games.

    I have been playing with it all day and decided to create the snow shader that will work with Sky Master v3.0 as well, i post some pics above of the WIP. The grass will gradually gather snow along with the terrain and melt in summer etc

    The thick grass in wind motion is too epic to describe as well :), the demo will support wind control to get the turbulent effect.
     
  18. nasos_333

    nasos_333

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    Some more vertex varieties, this uses a more detailed grass model that bends in a more smooth way.
     
    spinnerbox likes this.
  19. nasos_333

    nasos_333

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    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    UPDATE:


    The demo is now ready and working perfectly, i have also added the snow coverage feature and interactive grass in the same demo stage for completeness. Wind controls and artistic controls are also included.

    I will upload the demo later today, after some extra testing.
     
  20. nasos_333

    nasos_333

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    [​IMG]

    The first edition of the manual is now done, if anyone would like to preview it before the system is on the store (and provide suggestions for improvement which would be most welcome), i can send it in email.
     
  21. paulojsam

    paulojsam

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  22. nasos_333

    nasos_333

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    They are totally different, as i dont use DX11 and i have total customization and placement control (you can use anything for grass and of course other objects besides grass)

    The power of the system is the customization and ease of use of custom interactive and fully changable grass anywhere, it is even possible to paint it in real time on any surface, have it grow etc

    Essentially the DX11 grass could work as a sub system in my system, that would allow to use it in massive quantities with the LOD system (if it can be batched, i have not tested it).

    I have multiple shaders and grass assets included for various purposes (wind, snow, flowers, wheet etc) as well.

    That is the core of the system, i also have a fence creation system etc

    The snowed grass in the above pics is actually all painted in real time during gameplay as well.
     
    Last edited: Aug 27, 2015
  23. nasos_333

    nasos_333

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    Epic landscapes with full grass coverage

     
  24. paulojsam

    paulojsam

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    your unity package is more dinamic and complex then. Do you also have the ability for the player to step on it, and create a path
     
  25. nasos_333

    nasos_333

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    I think the demo will showcase best what can be achieved with the system, i will try to upload it tomorrow.

    You can indeed step on the grass and it will scale and rotate based on the hero speed. I can also cast balls in the demo and have those open the path. The first update will also bring a moan action that will make the grass fly to the air and vanish, for more epic feeling. If i manage i will sqeeze this action for initial release too.

    These are templete actions of course and any kind of action can be coded with the system, as long as it does not keep many grasses open (unbatched) at once or for a long time, that is the only limitation with the dynamic grass.

    Another perk is that these actions (after coded) are extremely easy to use, they dont need any extra setup, they just use a collider as trigger and is good to go.
     
  26. paulojsam

    paulojsam

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    thank you for your reply! I think you got another future happy customer!
     
    nasos_333 likes this.
  27. nasos_333

    nasos_333

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    Great, i am working around the clock to make the release asap, i have been testing the system extensively to regulate best the parameters for real time use, so the demo will act also as a guide for the gameplay use of the system.

    Also i will add lots of cool places to paint grass, like paintable rocks and spherical planets, for the complete showcase of what is possible.

    Here is another video. The videos have around half the frame rate of what i actually get when not recording, as the recording with Bandicam induces heavy constant frame rate loss, plus they have spikes when i access the inspector, so they are not representative of pefrormance.

     
  28. mk1978

    mk1978

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    Just to confirm. Is it so that you can use Terrain Composer for placing your grass in the scenes?
     
  29. nasos_333

    nasos_333

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    The system uses a custom editor to place and control the grass, but the editor is just an interface for the main script that does all the core work, so essentially any system could be used with it.

    The core is working by instantiating a single script that creates the grass, so where that script is instantiated in the scene, the grass will be created on that spot.

    The only issue is that the editor must pass various parameters to actually take full advantage of the system and customize it (like the surface normal), so while it is definitly possible to instantiate the grass prefab with any program (and it will work in the same performant way in game, with the default parameters in the prefab), for taking advantage of all the features an interface must be made to connect with Terrain Composer.

    Ideally if the composer can give a list of where the grass should go (position and maybe normal too), it would be trivial to write a script to populate these places in the editor, so i will see how this could work. If normal is not given, it is also trivial to find it and use it during instantiation.

    This is a feature that will come in a later update though, as i have not used TC, so i will need some time to see how this system works.
     
  30. nasos_333

    nasos_333

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    I had a quick look at TC and from what i gather it uses a texture to define grass placement. InfiniGRASS does not support texture based placement for the initial version (though it is definitly planned for later versions), so if TC does not provide a way to extract its information for grass positioning, it cant be used with InifniGRASS directly.

    I will check more extensively later, maybe there is a prefab mode for item distribution which i have not found yet.
     
  31. nasos_333

    nasos_333

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    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
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    Rocks painted with the syste in play mode, the grass/flowers was painted on them

    Now i am working on the final demo grass type, named "true medow", i will post pics soon
     
    Last edited: Aug 29, 2015
  32. nasos_333

    nasos_333

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    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Rocks with snowed grass.
     
  33. nasos_333

    nasos_333

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    One question, should i leave the demo totally free to add lot of density in real time, to showcase what can be painted in editor (since static can be far thicker than real time painted) or limit it to what should be used in real time only (meaning the patch spread and density will be lower and to cover the same region will require lots more cliks for example)

    Any suggestions on this are welcome, since adding the top density in real time can create visible spikes and is not meant for real time, so it might give the wrong impression about performance (note that the same grass can be painted in real time with about same final preformance, just with more smaller brushes).

    At the very least i will have a not in the demo with what densities to use for real time and which are a preview of editor bruses.

    I will post pics of the golden medow and the new vines brush soon.
     
  34. nasos_333

    nasos_333

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    [​IMG]

    Rocks with snow added for demo
     
  35. nasos_333

    nasos_333

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    [​IMG]

    Vines brush
     
  36. nasos_333

    nasos_333

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    UPDATE:

    I have noticed that some types of grass are rather slow in Unity editor for some reason (maybe because they are not batched). For the slower PCs (like mine) i have also added an export to HDD feature, that can export patches to OBJ files and then they can replace the editor ones (which may be erased).

    This also allows the export of the grass painted in real time, so the game itself can be a grass painting editor. That was really needed as i got some amazing results while painting in game, which can now be exported for later use (but will not be part of InfiniGRASS LOD system anymore, though a simple LOD system may be used on them and the shader fade also applies for smooth transitions in the distance).
     
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2015
  37. nasos_333

    nasos_333

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    I posted the demos but my dropbox seems to be down for some reason, i will post again when it is resolved or upload to google drive.

    EDIT:
    Dropbox seems to be down for everyone, i hope they get it back soon
    https://downdetector.com/status/dropbox
     
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2015
  38. nasos_333

    nasos_333

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    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    InfiniGRASS with Sky Master v3.0 (grass created in real time inside the demo)[​IMG]

    First WIP demos of InfiniGRASS released !!!!

    This is an evaluation version, so any suggestions/comments are more than welcome so i can further perfect the system.

    The Sky Master demo is using top quality in everything and multiple image effects for best look, so it is best for stronger machines. Also the grass density and spread i have enabled in both demos are way beyond what should be used for real time, since i want to showcase what brushes can be like in the editor.

    The editor side can be rather heavy (as the grass is batched only in play mode and the heaviest grass can cause a slow down in editor mode), but i have a LOD system in the editor to make things easier for the slower machines.

    For real time use evaluation you can use smaller brushes (decrease both density and spread to get the same density per brush area, but with less grass placed each time so batching is transparent). A density of 2 min - 3 max is recommended for real time use (or 1-4) and spread of 8-15.

    Also note that left mouse will delete grass, so if some grass dissapears without reason, it is because button click erased it. I have an algorithm to eliminate grass blades placed in a wrong collider or spot, so some blades may also seem to dissapear when painting fast in real time.

    Both demos are targeting mid-high range PC (Sky Master one especially), as they are already demanding at that resolution on my laptop before even painting any grass !!! Of course my laptop is 5 years old and non gaming one, so latest laptops should be better i suppose.

    InfiniGRASS paint grass (and fences-rocks) demo
    https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/79230236/INFINIDY/INFINIGRASS/INFINIGRASS_PAINT_DEMO.html

    InfiniGRASS demo with Sky Master v3.0 Snow-Water-Sky-Rain
    https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/79230236/INFINIDY/INFINIGRASS/INFINIGRASS_SKYMASTER3_DEMO.html

    Instructions:
    -Paint grass with right mouse button and erase with left.
    -Paint fence with right click and stop painting with fence paint toggle button.
    -Paint rocks with right button, erase with left. 3rd rock type can be painted on itself !!!
    -Press "Interactive on" to plant interactive grass, use for tall grass and use "cast ball" toggle to cast balls on the grass. Use small brushes for best dynamic result.
    -The hero can also step on the grass (if balls are not activated)
    - Toggle snow and water (and rain in special FX) in Sky Master demo to see how these extra FX integrate with InfiniGRASS

    My PC has a very old CPU and low to mid range GPU, so would be great to see results with some latest machines :). The system is mutlithreaded, so it performs best if no other heavy processes are running in the background/other CPUs.
     
    garrido86 and dizzymediainc like this.
  39. dizzymediainc

    dizzymediainc

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    it definitely looks like an interesting system, would love to see the FPS displayed in the demos.
     
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  40. nasos_333

    nasos_333

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    I will create a demo specifically for real time use and add an FPS counter. In these demos the whole system is exposed, so if the full density is selected which is meant for editor use only, there will be spikes, so it would be best to have the frame rate showcased in a demo that is specifically for fps evaluation.

    Tweaking the parameters for all grasses and testing will take a bit, so this demo will come later tomorrow.
     
  41. nasos_333

    nasos_333

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    [​IMG]
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    I post some pics from stress tests i do for the 3rd demo, with my very old PC (core 2 duo CPU) in (near) 1080p.

    The grasses range from simple vertex to very high detail transparent ones.

    The grass is cut in the LOD cutoff distance, so at any point the amount of shown grass will remain (about) the same, no matter how much the scene has.
     
    spinnerbox likes this.
  42. RiokuTheSlayer

    RiokuTheSlayer

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    I want this. I want this pretty bad.
     
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  43. nasos_333

    nasos_333

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    [​IMG]
    Hopefully i can submit today :), i am doing some final optimizations and the real time painting demo, so it is very close.
     
  44. nasos_333

    nasos_333

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    UPDATE:

    I reworked some of the usuability of the system, here is the latest changes

    - The system used 5 tags for the player and batching, now it is all handled by the manager without any tag use as an option (now default option), so there is no need to define any tags, unless grass must be grown without the GrassManager use.

    - The grass can be heavy for the editor, since it does not get batched until in play mode where it is super fast. Also when saved in the scene takes a lot of HDD space, so i added an option to Ungrow the grass in editor after painting and have it grow in play time or grow it back for editing in Unity editor. This allows for minimal scene file size (grass takes up zero as it is only a script before grass creation) and easier scene editing wihtout having to disaply the grass (when diplaying it, a LOD system applies).

    So the best practice will be to paint the grass and Ungrow it for saving the scene with minimal size. Then grow it back in editor to add grass or let it grow in real time (or any combination).

    I am adding these new features to the manual and testing some more before the submission, which will happen very soon.
     
  45. nasos_333

    nasos_333

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    Low grass with snow[​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    An extra optimization is now implemented, to even further lower draw calls when multiple type of grasses are painted one close to another. The grouping will now be done by type, as well as proximity.

    This extra categorization will be managed by the GrassManager.
     
  46. nasos_333

    nasos_333

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    [​IMG][​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Final optimizations have gone in and i get a super frame rate even in extreme grass quantities, with full quality, shadows and resolution.

    I will post more pics soon. After the last optimizations i have also almost doubled the LOD distance, without much impact to the frame rate.
     
  47. nasos_333

    nasos_333

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    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    More on the performance, with full coverage and very big LOD distances

    The new demo will come soon. Demos so far linked below (the system has received some major performance enchancements since the two demos as well)

    InfiniGRASS paint grass (and fences-rocks) demo
    https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/79230236/INFINIDY/INFINIGRASS/INFINIGRASS_PAINT_DEMO.html

    InfiniGRASS demo with Sky Master v3.0 Snow-Water-Sky-Rain
    https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/79230236/INFINIDY/INFINIGRASS/INFINIGRASS_SKYMASTER3_DEMO.html

    Instructions:
    -Paint grass with right mouse button and erase with left.
    -Paint fence with right click and stop painting with fence paint toggle button.
    -Paint rocks with right button, erase with left. 3rd rock type can be painted on itself !!!
    -Press "Interactive on" to plant interactive grass, use for tall grass and use "cast ball" toggle to cast balls on the grass. Use small brushes for best dynamic result.
    -The hero can also step on the grass (if balls are not activated)
    - Toggle snow and water (and rain in special FX) in Sky Master demo to see how these extra FX integrate with InfiniGRASS
     
  48. nasos_333

    nasos_333

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    UPDATE:

    The manual is now updated with all the latest changes and the system has been tested extensively with the new optimizations and works great, so the submission will be done today and a new, real time grass planting oriented, demo will also be posted.
     
    MarcusWatson likes this.
  49. nasos_333

    nasos_333

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    [​IMG]

    Testing on round surfaces
     
    Patico likes this.
  50. nasos_333

    nasos_333

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    Video with Sky Master ULTIMATE v3.0

     
    XGT08 likes this.