Tuesday, March 03, 2009

EQII Shadow Maps

If you log into the Test server you can see an early implementation of shadow maps for EQII. I'm really excited about this feature going in and its something we've been wanting for awhile. Ryan Favale has done an excellent job adding this new shadow system to EQII. Now you'll have a choice between shadow volumes (CPU) and shadow maps (GPU). There will certainly be situations depending on your computer hardware and the zone you're in where one might be faster than the other and vise versa. But this option will at least let you choose the shadow system that works best overall for your system.

There are some inherent differences between the two shadow technologies and if you're interested to read more about how they work, there is some decent information on Wikipedia. We are using something similar to the cascaded shadow map system described below.

Shadow Maps (GPU)
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shadow_mapping

Shadow Volumes (CPU)
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shadow_volume

If you get a chance to try these out on the Test Server, please give us your feedback in the following thread. Ryan is still tweaking for performance and quality as well as fixing bugs as he's made aware of them. So the more feedback we get, the better!

http://forums.station.sony.com/eq2/posts/list.m?topic_id=444895

5 comments:

Björn said...

Thrilled about this. I also hope this is just the first of many improvements to the graphics engine.

Shadows *have* been a large gobbler of framerate. It will be interesting to see how this will work out.

Anonymous said...

Well, it would be nice to cover the basics properly first. I am referring to tonight's Login Server outage, which ALSO uses the same DB for sign-in on the Forums, so NOBODY can even sign in to let you know that we can't get into the game! AND...it's a Friday night! When you step on it, you step on it good!

Anonymous said...

I'm excited to see the new shadows! My system atm is great but it just doesn't work having shadows on in pvp..just takes away to many fps. Great to know that my gpu will be used in eq2 lol..

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