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  1. Posts
    340

    Space Graphics Toolkit [RELEASED]







    The Space Graphics Toolkit is a collection of components that allow you to easily construct impressive space scenes for your games.

    All aspects of this pack are designed to give you full control over the graphical results, so you don't need need to be an astrophysicist to get quality results (i.e. there are no magic values you must carefully tweak to get something looking how you want).









    The dust component allows you to create infinitely scrolling dust clouds, or starfields.

    • Additive or Subtractive particles (for bright/dark dust/stars/etc)
    • Super fast scrolling & fading (it's all calculated on the GPU)
    • Easily gives your games a sense of speed










    The nebula component allows you to easily create volumetric nebulae and galaxies from a single source image (e.g. a satellite picture).

    • Additive or Subtractive particles (for bright/dark clouds)
    • Automatically samples 3D positions from 2D image
    • Can be combined with starfield component to create galaxies










    The debris spawner component allows you to create infnitely scrolling fields of asteroids/space junk/anything you like.

    • Use any GameObjects you like as debris
    • Control the spawn probability of each debris type
    • Spawn debris in 3D or 2D (e.g. top-down game).










    The thruster component allows you to easily add thruster effects to your spaceships. The thrusters are automatically animated to turn on/off and flicker.

    • Thruster flare (like lens flare)
    • Newtonian physics
    • Thruster Controller component (for handling multiple thrusters)
    • 2D & 3D Spaceship Controllers (for thruster controls)









    The surface tessellator component gives your planets and stars dynamic LOD, so the surface mesh will increase in detail as your approach the surface.

    • Cylindrical & cube map texture support
    • Lots of options to tweak performance
    • Surface Tessellator Collider component (for mesh collision)










    The planet component allows you to create terrestrial planets like Earth, or Mars.

    • Volumetric atmosphere
    • Atmospheric scattering
    • Atmospheric cloud layer
    • Specular hilighting on the water
    • Night lights
    • Can receive planetary ring shadows
    • Solar or Lunar eclipses
    • NEW Cube map texture support
    • NEW Fog setting










    The gas giant component allows you to create gas giant planets like Saturn, or Neptune.

    • Fully volumetric
    • Limb darkening
    • Night lights
    • Can receive planetary ring shadows
    • Solar or Lunar eclipses
    • NEW Cube map texture support
    • NEW Volumetric Probe component (allows spaceships to enter gas giant atmospheres)










    The star component allows you create stars like the Sun. These can either be fairly simple stars (like the sun), or really crazy ones (as seen above).

    • Volumetric atmosphere
    • Solar flares/prominences (currently static)
    • NEW Cube map texture support
    • NEW Fog setting










    The asteroid ring component allows you to create asteroid rings, like the Asteroid Belt.

    • Procedurally generated
    • Fully animated orbits
    • Set the inner and outer orbit speeds to create interesting effects
    • Specify the distribution pattern (e.g. mostly on the inside/mostly near the middle/etc)
    • Thousands of asteroids per draw-call
    • Supports n*n tilemaps for great visual variety
    • Can receive planetary shadows










    The ring component allows you to create rings around planets, like Saturn. You can also use this to show orbit paths, asteroid rings, or generally anything that needs a ring.

    • Procedurally generated
    • Particle scattering (i.e. sunlight through the ring)
    • Split mesh to allow for correct depth sorting against planet atmospheres
    • Can receive planetary shadows
    • Can cast shadows onto planets or gas giants









    • Procedurally generated
    • Animated to pulse in size
    • Can be used as a foreground or background object
    • Specify the distribution pattern (e.g. on a sphere/inside a cube/in a ring/etc)
    • Thousands of stars per draw-call
    • Supports n*n tilemaps for great visual variety
    • Extremely high resolution, with tiny textures (the starfields above use two 128*256 tile map textures)
    • NEW Combine multiple starfield textures into one starfield
    • NEW Automatic texture atlas generation for multiple starfield textures
    • NEW Set spawn probabilities of each type (colour/texture) of star
    • NEW Manually edit individual star settings (radius, position, etc)
    • NEW Elliptical Galaxy distribution
    • NEW Each distribution type has many settings






    The pack also contains many other smaller features:

    • Skysphere component
    • Simple orbit component
    • Surface displacement component (to make planet or star surfaces bumpy/elevated)
    • NEW Gravity Source & Gravity Receiver components
    • NEW Render queue changer (allows you to change material render queues in editor)






    Q: Does this package work on iOS and Android devices?
    A: Yes, all shaders in this pack use Shader Model 2. It's been tested on several devices including the: iPad 1, iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4S, and several Android devices whose names escape me.

    Q: Does this package work in the free version of Unity?
    A: Yes, every feature is fully supported by the free version of Unity.

    Q: Does this package work with Unity 4?
    A: Yes.

    Q: Is this package for background scenery only (i.e. things that can only be seen from a distance)?
    A: No, the planet atmospheres, star atmospheres, and gas giants are volumetric. This means that your camera can seamlessly travel through them and to the surface. However, there is currently no LOD system used on the planet or star surfaces, so the level of detail as you approach a planet's surface will probably be very low, unless your game uses a small scale (e.g. Spore or Super Mario Galaxy). But you could always write a component that generates a mesh with varying LOD, and apply it to the planet or star's component. It's just that it's quite a lot of work to implement a generic solution that many people will be happy with, so I haven't attempted writing such a component yet.

    Q: How optimized are the shaders?
    A: You'll notice in the screenshots of the inspectors that there are many checkboxes before various categories (e.g. Shading or Scattering). Toggling these will automatically switch to a shader that only implements the features you're currently using, so the shaders should have little waste. In addition to this, in many areas I've foregone physical accuracy in favour of efficient computation.

    Q: How many FPS do you get?
    A: This really depends on the platform and which components you use. Each component has a certain vertex shader and pixel shader cost. Meaning the FPS drop will either depend on how detailed your mesh is, or how big the object is on the screen. None of the shaders are particularly expensive in terms of the vertex shader, so you shouldn't have to worry about that too much. But if you do, then you can just use a lower detailed mesh to represent the object (the pack comes with many LOD stages for planets and such). The biggest hitter in terms of pixel shader cost is the gas giant shader, because it's fully volumetric so I had to use some rather expensive pixel shader instructions. But you can use a terrestrial planet's cloud layer as a stand-in, at the cost of losing the volumetric aspect. And for iOS devices, the asteroid rings are fairly expensive up-close, because I had to use alpha-testing. The other shaders should be fairly performant, but keep in mind these shaders aren't completely magic, so be sensible and limit the amount of items in your scene if performance is an issue (e.g. on mobile devices).

    Q: Can this be used to create alien worlds too?
    A: Yes, the reason there's an abundance of real world scenes is because it's fairly easy to find decent textures of Earth and such. I've included several alien scenes and alien world media into this pack, but I'm not a professional artist.

    Q: Will you add any more features in the future?
    A: Yes, if this gains enough interest and people buy it, then I definitely see myself adding way more things to this pack. In fact, I've already added way more than I originally planned for my first release.

    Q: Will the price stay the same?
    A: No, the price will eventually increase as I add more features.

    Q: Why are all these screenshots so freaking large? You owe me my next internet bill!
    A: I wanted to show off the visual fidelity that can be achieved using these components. All screenshots in this thread are unedited, have no anti-aliasing(AA), and use no post-processing.





    NEW Demo 1 - Asteroid Vortex (Asteroid Ring + Corona)
    NEW Demo 2 - Infinite Asteroids (Debris Spawner + Thruster)
    NEW Demo 3 - Flying Around a Star (Star + Corona + Thruster)
    NEW Demo 4 - Elliptical Galaxy (Starfield)
    NEW Demo 5 - Saturn (Gas Giant + Ring)
    NEW Demo 6 - Atmospheric Scattering + Dyanmic LOD (Planet + Surface Tessellator)
    NEW Demo 7 - Misty Galaxy (Nebula + Starfield + Dust)

    NEW Video 1 - Creating The Sun

    More videos to come in the future!





    From the Unity Asset Store.





    If your internet connection hasn't exploded yet, then here's a bonus picture of the Solar System, with accurate sizes:



    If you have any questions, comments, etc, then feel free to ask!
    Last edited by Darkcoder; 08-15-2013 at 02:13 AM.


  2. Location
    London, UK
    Posts
    220
    This looks like some great work. Is there any chance you could add some demo webplayer scenes showing off the features for us to check out? Would definitely encourage people to buy if its as awesome as it sounds
    | www.quickfingers.net || Follow me on Twitter |

    Step-seq : A music creation toy based on ease of use and ear pleasing results!
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  3. Posts
    78
    Hey congrats on the release.
    I noticed you do not mention about a 3D-background effect as in the development thread. Was it cut out?

    Btw, I fully support the Quickfingers idea of the demo web player. Please do let know if you need a hand with hosting.


  4. Location
    The House of The Mouse
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    I am definitely interested, but want to see a web player demo first and/or video of it in action. Looks good!


  5. Posts
    340
    Quote Originally Posted by Quickfingers View Post
    This looks like some great work. Is there any chance you could add some demo webplayer scenes showing off the features for us to check out? Would definitely encourage people to buy if its as awesome as it sounds
    Thanks. I'll definitely release a demo scene in a day or two. But more importantly, I plan to make some semi-decent videos showing how to use the components to achieve various graphical effects without much hassle.


    Quote Originally Posted by Novack View Post
    Hey congrats on the release.
    I noticed you do not mention about a 3D-background effect as in the development thread. Was it cut out?

    Btw, I fully support the Quickfingers idea of the demo web player. Please do let know if you need a hand with hosting.
    Nope it's still there, the asset also contains a demo scene that creates a separate scene as a background, and comes with a pdf detailing how to set it up yourself. I didn't realize it was such an important feature to highlight so I didn't mention it here, I'll definitely get around to making a section about this.


    Quote Originally Posted by zombiegorilla View Post
    I am definitely interested, but want to see a web player demo first and/or video of it in action. Looks good!
    Thanks, I'll do both very soon!


  6. Location
    UK
    Posts
    31

    Couldn't wait for the demo...

    Sorry, couldn't wait for the demo so I bought it...

    Only problem is now that we have guests round so I can't sit on the computer playing with it!! And I have to go to work early tomorrow (nooOOOOoo!!) So I won't get to play around and marvel at it all until late tomorrow afternoon (GMT.) Will give you feedback ASAP!!

    EDIT:

    One thing does spring to mind, though, without even testing it - it's a feature request, and I know you've touched upon the subject in the original thread and discounted the idea as it would perhaps be too specific to a certain situation, but it would be absolutely PHENOMENAL if you could include the ability to fly to the surface of the planets and have the surface procedurally generated or something. I'm far from being a competent coder to manage that myself, but could probably tweak my work-in-progress to fit whatever system you came up with...

    UPDATE:

    Just had a quick flick through the demo scenes - ab-so-lutely frikkin' awesome!!! Not only do the planets and gas giants look realistic, they're beautiful too!! I love the asteroid fields - already I'm thinking of a way to add colliders to the ones that are within a certain range of the camera... I'm sure for performance reasons it'd kill the computer to calculate collisions on them all...

    Can't wait to sit down with this tomorrow and spend some real time looking at how it all works and seeing if I can swap an alien planet from this package into my project.

    Love the sunrise/sunset within the atmosphere - but this is CLEARLY demanding some sort of system to allow the player to visit the surface of a planet!!!! That's gotta be top of the priority list for future updates, surely?!

    One other thing - and sorry for the lack of technical or astronomy-related jargon - but when viewing a planet with atmosphere from the dark side, so you see the lovely thin orange line of dawn breaking, I think it should be brighter if that makes any sense? Or perhaps could do with just a little more work to make it look spectacular.

    Thanks so much for putting this together - I'd say it's worth every penny now, but that would definitely be the case if you add planet surfaces...
    Last edited by nockieboy; 08-19-2012 at 01:25 PM. Reason: Quick review!! :)


  7. Posts
    340
    OK I added a demo of an alien gas giant scene:




    Quote Originally Posted by nockieboy View Post
    That's gotta be top of the priority list for future updates, surely?!
    Haha, I guess this isn't one feature I can't reason my way out of adding.

    I can fairly easily write (and will over the next few days) a component to tessellate a planet's surface, thus giving you dynamic LOD no matter where on the surface of a planet you're on. But it's kind of a rabbit hole of features, oh well!


    Quote Originally Posted by nockieboy View Post
    Just had a quick flick through the demo scenes - ab-so-lutely frikkin' awesome!!! Not only do the planets and gas giants look realistic, they're beautiful too!!
    Thanks! I also have some ideas on how to make them look even better, but I'll stick to one thing at a time


    Quote Originally Posted by nockieboy View Post
    I love the asteroid fields - already I'm thinking of a way to add colliders to the ones that are within a certain range of the camera... I'm sure for performance reasons it'd kill the computer to calculate collisions on them all...
    I will eventually implement this in the pack, the main issue you'll probably come across is that the asteroid positions aren't directly stored in the mesh, so you can't easily find which ones are near the camera. To make this calculation more sensible I'll most likely have to change the way the asteroid generator plots the orbits. But if you find an efficient way to do this with the current setup then let me know.


    Quote Originally Posted by nockieboy View Post
    One other thing - and sorry for the lack of technical or astronomy-related jargon - but when viewing a planet with atmosphere from the dark side, so you see the lovely thin orange line of dawn breaking, I think it should be brighter if that makes any sense? Or perhaps could do with just a little more work to make it look spectacular.
    I think I know what you mean. I just noticed my atmosphere texture blending causes the sunrise/sunsets to just be flat colours, this definitely shouldn't be the case. I'll have it fixed in the next release.


    Quote Originally Posted by nockieboy View Post
    Thanks so much for putting this together - I'd say it's worth every penny now, but that would definitely be the case if you add planet surfaces...
    Thanks! Expect an update later in the week


  8. Posts
    290
    A really lovely pack of effects, that I was lucky enough to get to test. Highly recommended. Glad to see it's out!


  9. Posts
    21
    Just picked this up last night and have to say this pack is just awesome. I've been wanting to make a space game for a while and this is exactly what I've been looking for. One question though, I know this is a graphics pack, but is there any possibility you might add a gravity script to it in the future? It would be handy for my ships flying around to to be affected by the planets gravity. But hey, understandable if you don't. And again, amazing pack, I'm certainly going to get a lot of use out of it.


  10. Posts
    12
    Purchased this because well it is very cool and I can see potential in some work I want to do. Question, do you plan to add things like gas clouds and particle effects for when travelling through space and the like. Nothing could be sweeter than being able to see that huge cool looking gas cloud in the distance and then travelling through it etc.

    Looking forward to your updates can't wait to see where you take this.


  11. Posts
    340





    It's not finished yet, but here's a small progress report on the surface LOD component. You can see the planet's surface mesh increase in detail the closer the camera gets to it. The gaps/seams in the terrain are what I'm working on fixing right now.




    Quote Originally Posted by runonthespot View Post
    A really lovely pack of effects, that I was lucky enough to get to test. Highly recommended. Glad to see it's out!
    Thanks! And thanks for helping test it


    Quote Originally Posted by kottabos View Post
    Just picked this up last night and have to say this pack is just awesome. I've been wanting to make a space game for a while and this is exactly what I've been looking for. One question though, I know this is a graphics pack, but is there any possibility you might add a gravity script to it in the future? It would be handy for my ships flying around to to be affected by the planets gravity. But hey, understandable if you don't. And again, amazing pack, I'm certainly going to get a lot of use out of it.
    Thanks! I guess I could add a gravity component. Your ships are physics objects using the rigidbody component right?


    Quote Originally Posted by Dogcomplex View Post
    Purchased this because well it is very cool and I can see potential in some work I want to do. Question, do you plan to add things like gas clouds and particle effects for when travelling through space and the like. Nothing could be sweeter than being able to see that huge cool looking gas cloud in the distance and then travelling through it etc.

    Looking forward to your updates can't wait to see where you take this.
    Yes, gas clouds are one fairly large feature that's currently absent from this pack and I definitely plan on adding them in the future.

    As for the particle effects as you travel through space, I was very close to writing such a component and including it in the initial release. But I decided that I'll freeze my current feature set and actually release the first build as it was already delayed quite a lot. They will definitely be included fairly soon though!


  12. Location
    UK
    Posts
    31
    The sneak peek is looking good! Can't wait to try it out!


  13. Posts
    21
    Quote Originally Posted by Darkcoder View Post
    [CENTER]
    Thanks! I guess I could add a gravity component. Your ships are physics objects using the rigidbody component right?
    Indeed they are, And thank you so much if you do add that in. and love the sneak peak, I'm currently working on recreating our solar system and being able to land ships on mars with better quality planetary surfaces will just be amazing. Also I gotta thank you for the wonderful highres textures in the pack, I only just noticed that they where in the texture folder. My ISS model looks amazing orbiting around earth with those textures (especially as it passes over the night side).


  14. Location
    New York
    Posts
    397
    Well, this is certainly up my alley!

    Congrats on what looks like a hella wonderful addon for us space game junkies!


    Starfields and asteroids make up a large part of my games and anything that give me a leg up on making them look great is a good thing!

    -Will
    "With THIS!, you could be like GOD!" - Kozer, Blake's 7

    Windows 7 (64-bit): 24Gigs / Hex Core 4.0GHz (OC) / Dual NVidia GTX 460 1Gig
    WinVista SP1 (32-bit) 4G / Dual Core / NVidia 86xx 256M (Dell XPS 1530 Laptop)


  15. Posts
    290
    Good lord- DarkCoder, if you get that planet detail system working...
    Well, it looks AMAZING.


  16. Location
    New York
    Posts
    397
    Purchased - I had to support this add-on!

    Being a Wing Commander junkie, this will definitely help me make my levels look very nice and save me a lot of time with my development.

    I hope this project is successful enough for you cause I'd love to see development continue further!


    The only thing I'd ask is if possible, please break up the PDF documentation into separate pages; I wanted to print out the Planet and other documentation but it's formatted as one long page of text and images.

    Now off to play with some asteroid fields and other stuff!

    -Will
    Last edited by WillBellJr; 08-24-2012 at 08:18 AM.
    "With THIS!, you could be like GOD!" - Kozer, Blake's 7

    Windows 7 (64-bit): 24Gigs / Hex Core 4.0GHz (OC) / Dual NVidia GTX 460 1Gig
    WinVista SP1 (32-bit) 4G / Dual Core / NVidia 86xx 256M (Dell XPS 1530 Laptop)


  17. Posts
    340





    This shows Earth from fairly close up, and as you can see I've now fixed the terrain seams with the dynamic LOD. The surface uses a 4096x2048 texture, so each texel represents a region of under 10km (9.7km at the equator).

    I mentioned earlier that adding this was going to be a rabbit hole of features, and I'm sure you may be able to see why; While the terrain mesh now looks more detailed up close, the terrain texture doesn't. So if I release it now, I know everyone will request that I add support for detail maps. If I add detail maps, then they would have to only be applied to the land parts of the planet, but then the sea would look boring and flat. Eventually I'll have to separate the land from the sea, but I will leave that for another release.




    Quote Originally Posted by kottabos View Post
    Indeed they are, And thank you so much if you do add that in. and love the sneak peak, I'm currently working on recreating our solar system and being able to land ships on mars with better quality planetary surfaces will just be amazing. Also I gotta thank you for the wonderful highres textures in the pack, I only just noticed that they where in the texture folder. My ISS model looks amazing orbiting around earth with those textures (especially as it passes over the night side).
    Thanks! Let me know if/when you post pictures of your project, I'd love to see it


    Quote Originally Posted by WillBellJr View Post
    Purchased - I had to support this add-on!

    Being a Wing Commander junkie, this will definitely help me make my levels look very nice and save me a lot of time with my development.

    I hope this project is successful enough for you cause I'd love to see development continue further!


    The only thing I'd ask is if possible, please break up the PDF documentation into separate pages; I wanted to print out the Planet and other documentation but it's formatted as one long page of text and images.

    Now off to play with some asteroid fields and other stuff!

    -Will
    Thanks, and me too! Haha, I didn't think people would actually print it out, but duly noted. I'll split the documentation up for the next release.


  18. Location
    Long Island
    Posts
    778
    This keeps getting better and better. With the terrain though, are you allowing it to be modified with the terrain tools also to put foliage and stuff on it? And the ability to flatten it out, etc?
    If so I'll buy it right now.
    Last edited by Archania; 08-25-2012 at 11:16 AM.


  19. Posts
    340
    Quote Originally Posted by Archania View Post
    This keeps getting better and better. With the terrain though, are you allowing it to be modified with the terrain tools also to put foliage and stuff on it? And the ability to flatten it out, etc?
    If so I'll buy it right now.
    I'm pretty sure it's impossible for the terrain tools to interface with any user components. In the future I may write such tools, but the terrain isn't the main focus of this pack, so I don't want to spend all my time on it. Right now, the height is based on a height map texture (of equirectangular projection) that you specify, so you can just draw a solid colour in some area if you want flat terrain. Currently there's no built in method to place objects on the surface, so I'll have to think about that. But it will most likely look different to the way you plot stuff on Unity terrains, because you can have any number of planets, so it would be incredibly inefficient to plot all your trees outside of runtime.


  20. Location
    Long Island
    Posts
    778
    Thats understandable. I have thought of a work around already to it. Would be great to just generate great looking planets. Which you already are doing.
    Thank you for answering.

    Update: Alright.. you sold me on it.. I can see this helping me out. Thanks!
    Last edited by Archania; 08-25-2012 at 05:20 PM.

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