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Development – Rewriting the material system 02

Posted by SolarPortal 22/01/2018 1 Comment(s)

With our internet crisis seeming to be resolved, I have decided to write another blog on the development of the new material system which we are rewriting due to the old one being to hard to use. Please read the first blog post to get an idea of the new system design here

In this update, we have very good news on the development as we now have what looks to be a usable system. By this, i don't mean that it is usable by an end user such as yourself but more-so usable by us developers which signifies this system is worth completing and developing further. We call it a prototype.

The system now allows for any sub material to be changed simply by dragging and dropping the material of choice from the asset manager onto the submesh slot.
This then changes the "Material Sub Data" property to store what material is assigned to what submesh as all the "Material" button does now is opens the new panel which displays all the sub materials associated with the sceneEntity.

Using this new workflow means materials can be shared across meshes and lods to improve performance and quality of your scenes.

Once you have finished editing your sceneEntity, you can store them to a preset and bring them back into the scene allowing an infinite amount of customisations you can apply to any entity by mixing and matching materials. Saving and loading your scene will also store/restore the material data correctly as well.
This all means that stage 2 of the development is now working.

I even made a video that demonstrates this new material system in play.

You may have noticed a new feature which does not exist on any of the other Versions of skyline to date. This is the "Prepare folder for Skyline" menu button in the Asset Manager.

What happens is we convert all FBX files into the .mesh files and we now split materials into separate material files rather than one long material file as this allows you to reuse certain materials. Then we rename all the texture files into unique names, followed by changing the textures used in the material files. After that, the system then renames the materials into unique names and alters the mesh data to reference these new names.

All this is too ensure there are no duplicate resources in the system and all names are compared against the resource lists.

The next stages are to:

  • Work on dragging materials to the entity instead of sub entity slot
  • Rewrite the material editor to save the correct material data back to the correct material file.
  • Change the submesh materials from tecture images into proper material spheres showing the advanced shaders on them.
  • Test LOD stages when working with submaterials that change.
  • Apply a set of materials as default materials for the mesh, which is what will be used every time the mesh is dragged in.
  • Be able to convert a whole material file into individual files when preparing a folder.
  • And more.............

Thanks for reading and staying up to date with the development of the Skyline Game Engine and hope you can support us if your not already. :)

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11/01/2022, 06:56:47 PM,


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