Game Art Tricks

It’s a collection of various game development tricks in all kinds of games that I sometimes visit. The analyses are written by an artist so there aren’t any code snippets, but it’s all presented in a way to show you how the tricks work in principle so you can try to implement them yourself.

Some examples:

Some are explained better than others, but you should at least get some interesting ideas.


Nice. This is something many aspiring game developers don’t get. Games are all smoke and mirrors and not simulating atoms to get breakable surfaces :wink:


Thanks, really interesting stuff :smiley:

I especially love the hyperspace space ship jump effect !
Everybody speak about the ship cutting feature but i’m also interested by the white outline…i already have a few ideas where i can use this effect…
How would you achieve this? Is it something similar used in the water shader for foam spawning only where water collides with terrain?

Yeah it’s sort of like reverse soft particles. Look at that entry about cutting in alien isolation and wolfenstein new order, specifically the wolfenstein heat outline. It looks like the same trick to me, but I don’t really know how to implement it.

Hummm, I’m not sure it is exactly the same trick cause in the ship example the plane always remains a plane (i was thinking about a shader displaying some color where it detects collision…i don’t know how but…) whereas in the two other examples, the mesh is cut and the heat color is only applied on inner edges.
And during the cutting phase, we clearly see that a new mesh is generated along the cut path (wireframe gif for alien isolation and the one where we can see bad joins between quads on cut direction change for wolfenstein)

Yeah I suppose you’re right. You’d need some sort of control to report collisions, maybe something like that forceshield shader in shaderblow which uses the data to show ripples.

Yep, but the question is collision with what ? …tri vs tri and recreate a shape inside the plane each frame? I’m pretty sure i can do that directly in shaders …maybe with depth buffer) in an easier way…i need to study the jme water shader…i still think this is exactly the same trick the engine uses for foam on the coast.
Would love some input of our shader master nehon :stuck_out_tongue: (i think he did htis one)

Hint Nr 1: Depth buffer is your friend :wink:

Or, if you want it possible from all angles you just need to know the center point and normal of the quad.

Ah, never manipulated it yet but thanks, it confirms my thoughts :slight_smile:

Edit : just get your edit, can you elaborate a little bit on the second part?

I am on the phone… will post im the evening… actually, i you only want to cut along a single axis in modelspace it gets super simple

Yep, with just a plane in model space. it could be a good start anyway. Need to understand how depth buffer works…my shaders are pretty simple right now :s