Book Image

Become a Unity Shaders Guru

By : Mina Pêcheux
5 (1)
Book Image

Become a Unity Shaders Guru

5 (1)
By: Mina Pêcheux

Overview of this book

Do you really know all the ins-and-outs of Unity shaders? It’s time to step up your Unity game and dive into the new URP render pipeline, the Shader Graph tool, and advanced shading techniques to bring out the beauty of your 2D/3D game projects! Become a Unity Shaders Guru is here to help you transition from the built-in render pipeline to the SRP pipelines and learn the latest shading tools. With it, you’ll dive deeper into Unity shaders by understanding the essential concepts through practical examples. First, you’ll discover how to create a simple shading model in the Unity built-in render pipeline, and then in the Unity URP render pipeline and Shader Graph while learning about the practical applications of both. You’ll explore common game shader techniques, ranging from interior mapping to adding neon outlines on a sprite or simulating the wobble of a fish. You’ll also learn about alternative rendering techniques, like Ray Marching. By the end of this book, you’ll have learned to create a wide variety of 2D and 3D shaders with Unity’s URP pipeline (both in HLSL code and with the Shader Graph tool), and be well-versed with some optimization tricks to make your games friendly for low-tier devices as well.
Table of Contents (23 chapters)
Part 1: Creating Shaders in Unity
Part 2: Stepping Up to URP and the Shader Graph
Part 3: Advanced Game Shaders
Part 4: Optimizing Your Unity Shaders
Part 5: The Toolbox

Using billboarding for in-game UI displays

It is quite common in games to have outdoor scenes with a lot of vegetation, be it trees, bushes, ferns, or a bit of everything. At first sight, these might look like complex assets to optimize and render, since you have all these leaves to show everywhere, requiring a high enough density for the player to really feel the foliage volume... but that’s where the trickery comes in!

To fake this effect of leaves all around you without having to model millions of polygons of foliage, game creators have developed a nice technique over the years: billboarding.

In short, this shading ruse allows us to have some objects face the camera at all times – for example, the leaves in our trees – and thus, use just an image instead of a heavy 3D model. In a completely different context, billboarding can also be applied to extra-diegetic elements such as pickups and UI so that they are more readable in the scene.

In the next sections...