Guide : Using lights in your mod

Talk about your new mod or map here

Moderators: bert_the_turtle, jelco

User avatar
Chris
Introversion Staff
Introversion Staff
Posts: 1172
Joined: Sat Nov 25, 2000 7:28 pm
Location: Cambridge, UK
Contact:

Guide : Using lights in your mod

Postby Chris » Fri Apr 29, 2005 1:14 am

I've been playing all the mods that have come along so far and i'm very impressed. There is some cool stuff here. But one thing has consistently been a bit rough, is the use of lights. This is understandable, as lights aren't particularly intuitive or easy to edit in the in-game editor. However lights are essential if you want your mods to look their best.

All of the maps in the final game of Darwinia have 2 light sources. Generally speaking the first light is high up, neutral coloured, to give a general illumination to the whole level. The second light is generally low down (virtually horizontal in some cases), and coloured quite strongly, to give a glow or edge to one side of all the hills. This gives Darwinia a lot of its distinctive look.

To create lights in the map editor, click on Lights, then click Create Light. Pretty self explanatory. You can have 0, 1 or 2 lights. Anymore than that won't make any difference as only the first 2 lights will be used when rendering. Using lights has no effect on the games performance.

The R, G and B values correspond to the Red, Green and Blue colour components of your light. Generally speaking you should try to avoid highly coloured lights with components greater than 2.0, as this can look very unnatural, unless that's the effect you're looking for. For example, if you want a Green landscape you would be better off making a green landscape texture, and lighting it with a softly coloured yellow light, rather than creating a strong green light. You can adjust the brightness and create interesting saturation effects if the brightness goes too high.

The Y value corresponds to the angle of the light. A Y value of 0 would mean the light was horizontal, and a Y value of 1 would mean the light was pointing directly downwards. Horizontal lights give great highlights and can make things look very moody. Lights with high Y values give good overall light but can look bland.

The key to succesfully using lights is their orientation. We spent a long time fiddling with the lights on each level in the game, getting the angles just right. To adjust the orientation of a light, click 'Select Light' in the lights dialog. Then hold down the left button in the middle of the screen, and drag the mouse left and right. This will rotate the angle of the light around the vertical axis. You can use this to create many different types of lighting. Experiment and see what you come up with.
Last edited by Chris on Fri Apr 29, 2005 11:08 am, edited 1 time in total.
nihilisthetics
level1
level1
Posts: 50
Joined: Sun Apr 24, 2005 5:28 pm
Contact:

lights

Postby nihilisthetics » Fri Apr 29, 2005 1:35 am

Also, from messing about, I have learned that the x and z components can have a value between 1 and -1. This is the distance along the x and z axis of the map, where 0 is the midpoint.

Its good to have 2 lights opposite each other 1 light at, say, -1 -1 and the other at 1 1. This way you always get the faces of objects illuminated.

N
User avatar
The GoldFish
level5
level5
Posts: 3961
Joined: Fri Mar 01, 2002 9:01 pm
Location: Bowl / South UK
Contact:

Postby The GoldFish » Fri Apr 29, 2005 4:52 am

Unless of course, you *want* your levels to look earie and side lit... or bland and toplit (or maybe you intended to never have a light in your level at all and then someone complained so you put one in quickly at the end of development... hehe).

I've not really played many of the mods, but I can think of a few lights I'd like to fiddle with in Stricken. Highlighting the lights (NPI) though is a good idea - they certainly do add alot of character to the levels (or deliberately don't).

Also, I think lights add processor time or something at the start of the level, much like trees do. I have no idea how much, but that's probably a good reason not to use many more than 2, heh.
User avatar
xander
level5
level5
Posts: 16867
Joined: Thu Oct 21, 2004 11:41 pm
Location: Riverside, CA, USA
Contact:

Postby xander » Fri Apr 29, 2005 5:34 am

Well, then, that explains the trouble I have been having. I had assumed that X, Y, and Z were simple cartesian coordinates that refered to position on the map. Thus, I was trying to place lights in places like 5000 500 2500 to create a side light. Thanks for the explaination.

/me goes back and fiddles with the lights a bit.

xander
qFox
level1
level1
Posts: 59
Joined: Tue Oct 23, 2001 5:11 pm

Postby qFox » Fri Apr 29, 2005 9:20 am

its an... IV... post.... must worship dish now... ;)

Oh yeah, thanks for shedding some light into this.... :D
elDiablo
level5
level5
Posts: 3111
Joined: Thu Mar 14, 2002 12:23 pm
Location: London, UK

Postby elDiablo » Sun May 01, 2005 8:57 am

qFox wrote:Oh yeah, thanks for shedding some light into this.... :D


*groan*
We dont stop playing cos we get old... We get old cos we stop playing.
qFox
level1
level1
Posts: 59
Joined: Tue Oct 23, 2001 5:11 pm

Postby qFox » Sun May 01, 2005 9:39 am

oh come on, it was a door waiting to be kicked :)
Puzzlemaker
level2
level2
Posts: 115
Joined: Sun Jan 29, 2006 10:37 pm

Postby Puzzlemaker » Mon Jan 30, 2006 7:00 pm

It wasn't that bad. In fact, I round it rather punny.
Azrael
level0
Posts: 8
Joined: Tue Feb 14, 2006 2:17 pm
Location: Cambridgeshire, UK
Contact:

Uh . . .

Postby Azrael » Tue Feb 14, 2006 3:04 pm

These jokes are so bad, I may have to come and murder you in the night. But, as they say, the pun is mightier than the sword :roll: .
sirvoks
level3
level3
Posts: 436
Joined: Tue Dec 19, 2006 4:47 pm

Postby sirvoks » Sat Dec 30, 2006 3:52 pm

Thanks for explaining that Chris :)

Oh come on.. what a bad joke.
User avatar
prophile
level5
level5
Posts: 1541
Joined: Fri Feb 18, 2005 4:17 pm
Location: Southampton, UK
Contact:

Postby prophile » Sun Dec 31, 2006 4:59 am

...gravedig
User avatar
Levi
level1
level1
Posts: 17
Joined: Fri Jun 08, 2007 6:14 am
Contact:

Postby Levi » Tue Jun 12, 2007 11:01 am

:idea:

ty ty
infowars.com

Return to “Mod Projects”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest