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Sprite Lamp
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Platforms: PC, Mac, Linux
Languages: English
Posted:
Updated:
Nov 12, 2013 @ 2:35pm
Dec 4, 2013 @ 11:25am
Recent Announcements View All (1)
Kickstarter success!
Description
Release date: Second quarter 2014
Sprite Lamp is a tool for combining dynamic lighting with 2D art.

How it works
To make use of Sprite Lamp, the artist draws the subject of an image (a texture, a character, etc) several times, in the same pose and position but lit from different directions. Sprite Lamp then processes these images to produce a high-quality normal map (as well as several other map types). These images can be used in a game engine of your choice to achieve dynamic lighting while maintaining a painted or a pixel art look.

Sprite Lamp is a tool for producing maps — it doesn't directly integrate with engines. Any game engine that allows normal mapping or custom shaders can work with Sprite Lamp. Some shader techniques can be of particular benefit with this style, however, and I intend to make some shaders available for common engines (such as Unity) to help developers get the best out of them.

Uses of Sprite Lamp
Sprite Lamp can create normal maps, depth maps, ambient occlusion maps, and anisotropy maps from input images that are readily authorable by an artist, without the use of 3D modelling software. This has a variety of uses.

  • Making 2D games with dynamic lighting: This is the obvious one, of course. Games with the visual style of Metal Slug, Braid, Gunpoint, or Bastion, can now be combined with dynamic lighting. Stuff like carrying a torch, lighting up the room with explosions and muzzle flashes, or changing the lighting conditions as the day turns to night — all the good stuff that goes with a dynamic lighting engine — can work with your 2D art.

  • Making textures for 3D assets: Of course, since Sprite Lamp creates standard assets like normal maps, you can use it to texture objects or characters in your game. This can be used to keep a painterly look, or just help out people who lack the patience, skills, or computer power to model a high-res mesh to bake a normal map from.

  • Relighting characters for different environments: Sometimes it can be a challenge to have a single character travel to different levels in a game, because the character has to fit multiple different colour schemes. If you were to make that character's assets with Sprite Lamp, you could intelligently recolour them for lots of different environments without having to rework any art. This can be done completely as a pre-processing step, or dynamically, allowing you to use the same art for different environments, time of day, etc.

  • Anisotropy maps: The Pro version of Sprite Lamp has the ability to process a hand-drawn 'flow map' into an anisotropy map. This is useful for producing anisotropic specular highlights, which are common on surfaces such as hair or brushed metal.

  • Stereoscopic effects: Normal mapping alone can fall apart when viewed in stereoscopic 3D, because your depth perception tells you that the object you're looking at is flat. Because Sprite Lamp can create depth maps, you can make use of shader effects such as parallax mapping to help a texture hold up under this scrutiny.
46 Comments
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yutou【神隐ing】 Aug 27 @ 11:33am 
nice!
Nox Aug 13 @ 4:40am 
Cool!
Dreamer Alone Jun 11 @ 7:35pm 
I'll buy n matter what if I'm able to use it on Game Maker Studio Pro.
Shadow Jun 9 @ 12:13am 
C'mon man, ship it!
H.T. May 12 @ 11:25am 
Like.
Harrington* Apr 9 @ 2:56pm 
Like!
Spartan789 Mar 18 @ 8:38pm 
like!
Morgan Dexter Feb 15 @ 6:11pm 
like!
MUST | teamless Jan 28 @ 7:39pm 
like!
[CPC] Fenrir Jan 21 @ 2:42pm 
nice !! looks great !