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Cool Fake Cheap Volumetric Lights Solution For Unity

3D Artist Kaldrin experimented with setting up fake lighting for a sharp pixel scene using cubes with a custom unlit transparent material.

3D Artist Kaldrin presented a neat solution for faking actual volumetric lighting for a stylized scene. It consists of cubes with a custom unlit transparent material made with Shader Graph on URP. The transparency and colors are based on the offset, following a defined gradient depending on the distance from the object's original position, when one of the faces is stretched in the opposite direction of the main light source.

In the Reddit post, the artist confirms this method isn't perfect, as it requires placing the cubes manually on the windows, but the code should work with other shapes and custom meshes. On the whole, it's a nice cheap solution to a complex problem and the atmosphere and aesthetics of the scene look great.

Kaldrin was inspired by Technical Artist Aki Welter's real-time fake volumetric shader, who also made a great in-depth tutorial on using Shader Graph to implement fake volumetric lighting in Unity:

Kaldrin has just also released Sclash, a 2D samurai fighting game, where you play as a hand-drawn samurai in a beautifully painted setting. With just 3 buttons and no combos, Sclash is easy to pick up and offers epic and very intense duels.

Follow Kaldrin on X/Twitter for more gamedev experiments, check out Aki Welter's work on ArtStation, and get Sclash on Steam here. Also, don't forget to join our 80 Level Talent platform and our Telegram channel, follow us on InstagramTwitter, and LinkedIn, where we share breakdowns, the latest news, awesome artworks, and more.

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