Tutorial: Volumetric Lighting Last edited 3 weeks ago2020-03-05 00:36:48 UTC

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Volumetric lighting, also known as light shafts or god rays, is a lighting effect that can add depth and realism to the visuals of your map.

Prerequisites

Creating the effect

Skew a brush to closely match the angle of your light source. Since the base faces of the brush are meant to be invisible, they should be textured with CONTENTWATER in order to mirror the side faces of the brush, making it more realistic. Lastly, the brush should be an entity, such as func_illusionary, with Render Mode set to Additive. The translucency can be set with FX Amount (1 - 255).
User posted image
If you use NULL or black_HIDDEN, not all of the side faces will be rendered at the same time, and the effect is invisible from some angles (i.e. inside or directly below the volume). Here are a couple examples of volumetric lighting with and without the use of CONTENTWATER.
Volumetric lighting, with and without the use of CONTENTWATERVolumetric lighting, with and without the use of CONTENTWATER
Volumetric lighting, with and without the use of CONTENTWATERVolumetric lighting, with and without the use of CONTENTWATER
A scrolling texture could also be used with a func_conveyor entity.
Scrolling volumetric lightingScrolling volumetric lighting

Errors

Error: WATER brushes not allowed in detail
This error is caused by any of the following keyvalues in your entity:
  • zhlt_clipnodedetaillevel
  • zhlt_detaillevel
Error: mixed face contents
If your brush is textured with CONTENTWATER, then this error is caused by any of the following textures on your brush:

Volumetric lighting textures

TextureGroup
FADEvalve/halflife.wad
FADE2valve/halflife.wad
CULIGHTAcstrike/cs_havana.wad
CXLIGHTAcstrike/chateau.wad

2 Comments

Commented 1 month ago2020-02-24 22:10:13 UTC Comment #102552
this could probably stand a little more info on exactly what contentwater is. I'm looking at these images and I can't really tell which is which.
Commented 1 month ago2020-02-24 22:12:49 UTC Comment #102553
The whole thing could use more explaining and less telling.

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