February Blog: Show me the Updates!

Continuum

The Alpha branch of the Continuum Shader has been relatively inactive as of late, but we have big things happening in the background. A lot of work has been put into the brand new "Rebase" branch, a new branch meant to restructure the base of the code which will hopefully allow for easier editing, as well as much better handling of data. Once we have all of that out of the way, we will begin to migrate and optimize functions from the Alpha branch with our ultimate goal being, do everything that the Alpha branch does now, but at a much better frame rate. Because of this new milestone, we will soon be pushing Beta 3 out to all Tier 2 supporters so that everyone remains as up to date as possible while we continue working on the rebase in the background. As Continuum gets closer and closer to the Release Candidate testing stage, We will continue to work hard and implement several new PBR techniques and features, as well as optimize to surpass the performance of Continuum 1.3  

Continuum 2.0 Alpha  

Continuum 2.0 Alpha

 

Continuum 2.0 Rebase: Not much to see, we have some basic shading done, POM implemented, and our sky function implemented  

Continuum 2.0 Rebase:

Not much to see, we have some basic shading done, POM implemented, and our sky function implemented

 

Hey, where'd the section on Pulchra and Nova go?

This section is going to replace the Pulchra and Nova section as Nova is going to be dedicated to its own blog, and Pulchra is currently undergoing developments not directly related to the resource pack. The Nova blog is a quick recap of all that has happened over the past year of development, as well as a rough roadmap as to where David wants to go next with Nova. This includes the inclusion of Bedrock shading support, Forge mod injection, light-map rework, and many more plans for the future as the renderer begins to take shape. For more details on what's happening, please visit this link to view the latest Nova blog. As for Pulchra, our texture artist is creating a new module to add specular support and conform to the PBR standards of SEUS: Renewed, but this is currently a task that is being put on the backburner as he is working with developers to integrate Pulchra download's into our dedicated GitLab server. This will enable us to take another step in making your purchasing experience easier, eliminating the need to manually send invites to buyers and eliminating the extra steps of switching between file hosting services to download both products. Until this has finished, there have been about 1 or 2 textures added, which should give a general idea as to what's next for the next major Pulchra update.

Rain texture, pretty self explanatory change.

Rain texture, pretty self explanatory change.

Just a test to see how light disperses across a material, may be used for ores.

Just a test to see how light disperses across a material, may be used for ores.

 

Conclusion

Some of you may have noticed that recently, Continuum has been very quiet even a month after the holiday season. We've slowly been migrating back into working on our mainstream projects with our primary focus as of now being quality of life tweaks to make everything faster such as our new GitLab automation system specified above. We hope to have these fixes out soon, so we can begin to dedicate all of our time to prepare for consumer release.

Until then, that's all we have for next month, thanks for stopping by and we hope to have much more to share with you all in the near future.

-James

 

Nova Update: January 2018

Wow. It’s been a full year since the last Nova development blog post. That’s... a long time. I want to get these out more often than that. We’ll see what happens.

A lot has happened with Nova in the last year.

When the year began we were hard at work implementing GUI rendering for the main menu. We finished the framework for that, and added all the pages that were needed to load into a world. There’s still a lot of GUI pages that we haven’t explicitly touched, and probably a few crashes hiding in there, but we have enough to load into the game.

The people who had joined to make the GUI got busy with real life, so I also developed the chunk rendering code. Nova is able to render chunks like Minecraft with Smooth Lighting turned off (getting smooth lighting working would have been hard). There was actually a lot of difficulty here. Minecraft groups the faces in a model by the face of a cube that they would be up against, and it provides an enum for each face of the cube. This would be fine, except that it uses the value `null` (which is never a member of an enum) for all the faces that are not directly against the side of a cube. That is, if you iterate over all the enum values and get each of their faces, you still have to ask for the faces with `null` instead of an actual enum value. This is incredibly silly and caused me a lot of grief

E3 2017 happened. During it, Microsoft announced the Super Duper Graphics Pack for Minecraft. Minecraft: Windows 10, Pocket Edition, Switch, and XBox were moving to a new engine, Bedrock, and Minecraft 1.3 would add support for user-defined shaders - and the Super Duper Graphics Pack would be built using that support.

This changed many things. One of Nova’s main goals was compatibility with existing shaderpacks. At the time I started Nova this meant compatibility with shadersmod shaders, which soon become Optifine shaders when Karyonix gave the shadersmod code to sp614x. While watching E3, I decided to support Bedrock shaders as well. Users will be able to use many existing shaderpacks from all versions of Minecraft with Nova.

Support for Bedrock Shaderpacks was added to the backlog, but there was more work to be done for chunk rendering. Adding the code to support Bedrock Shaderpacks would have to wait.

In September, another revelation dropped - The Windows 10 (and probably XBox) versions of Minecraft were moving to DirectX 12. This would allow Minecraft greater performance on many systems, but it had an affect on Nova. Using Vulkan for Nova had been the original plan, and it’s something I had put on the backburner while I was learning how to work with Minecraft: Java Edition’s code. This new revelation was a challenge: surely I could make Minecraft: Java Edition render as well as Windows 10.

Conversion to Vulkan began mid-October. I first had to learn Vulkan, or at least get a grasp of the basics. I decided that, since I had been spurned to convert Nova to Vulkan by Bedrock, I should add in support for Bedrock Shaderpacks while I was converting to Vulkan. That decision has caused me a lot of pain, since supporting Bedrock shaderpacks, Optifine shaderpacks, and Nova’s extensions to both added a lot of complexity to what Nova had to do. I moved across the USA, started a new job, and travelled a lot for the winter holidays - all things that have taken away from Nova.

That brings us to today. Nova continues to plod steadily on. Nova can load Bedrock material files, and is reasonably good at initializing its Vulkan context. Nova can load textures and shaders without too much difficulty.

The immediate roadmap sees rendering commands added to Nova. This will allow Nova to render the GUI and chunks, like the OpenGL version of Nova.

Once that feature parity is achieved, I’ll take a step back and look at the progress of Minecraft: Java Edition. MC:JE is making significant changes to its renderer for 1.13, and I want to move Nova to Forge instead of raw MCP. Adapting to 1.13 and to Forge are both significant changes, and I want to do them at the same time. If Forge for 1.13 releases before Vulkan Nova has feature parity with OpenGL Nova, we’ll be able to jump right in to the Forge conversion without any delay.

However, if I have to wait for Forge, there’s numerous other tasks I can do. These will all be focused on optimizing Nova so we can render the maximum number of pixels per second. Some items on this list are:

  • Multithreaded command buffer generation and submission
  • Indirect chunk rendering

Once the Forge conversion is complete, I’ll likely spend a bit of time working through making GUI and chunk rendering really nice. We’ll dive into Minecraft’s GUI, making sure each page renders properly through Nova. I’ll work on making chunk rendering respond to the rendering options in the options GUI, such as the setting for fancy leaves or the render distance. When I'm satisfied with that, we’ll begin conquering entities. They’ll have a good bit of complexity with tracking their position, rotation, and animation state, but it’s nothing we can’t handle.

The future of Nova is bright. This project has taken a long time already, and I expect there’s still a lot of time before it’s anywhere close to done, but I promise all this work will be worth it.

January Blog: A few updates, and reflection.

Happy new year!

Happy new year! Hope you guys had a great holiday season. It's actually been relatively quiet development wise here at Continuum, but we still have a bit of news to share with you guys today.


Continuum

Visually, there hasn't been many changes to Continuum since the beginning of December, but most of the time has been spent micro-optimizing and organizing internally. This period of reorganization has allowed for a new Ambient Occlusion system, less present shadow acne, re-done sky shading, etc. All of these features will contribute to the upcoming water update which will introduce projected caustics, better volumetrics, better parralax, etc.


Nova

As you all know, we are currently putting all of our time and focus into the conversion of Nova from OpenGL 4.6 to Vulkan, and into making Nova use the Bedrock material format which is used by versions of Minecraft that run on the Bedrock engine (Windows 10, XBox One, Switch, and Mobile). We've completed replacing all the OpenGL code with Vulkan code, and now comes the process of testing the new Vulkan code and removing any bugs that will hinder development.

One major recent bug was loading Bedrock materials. Because Nova is a highly data-driven renderer, we didn't want to predefine materials that you have to use. This meant that Nova had to scan the materials directory in a shaderpack to see what materials the shaderpack developer wanted to use. We used the new standard filesystem library to scan the directory for materials, but unfortunately the standard filesystem library has a number of warts which made the library difficult to integrate. Performing that integration took a few weeks (since we're also busy with the holidays), but the integration is now complete.

The next step is continued testing of loading Bedrock materials and the exiting rendering code, finding bugs and places where our understanding of Vulkan is lacking, and fixing those issues as they occur. The material loading code is very complex, mostly because that code contains the shader loading code which has to handle a file format that's evolved organically over the last few years. We expect that the majority of the bugs will be related to material loading.

Once the Vulkan conversion is complete, we'll be converting Nova from a pure MCP mod to a Forge mod, which will enable a much more user-friendly approach of injection. As you may know, we've tried a number of things to make Nova easier to compile for non-developers, with each approach being too unreliable for satisfactory results. By converting Nova to a Forge mod we'll be able to distribute the precompiled code, eliminating any compilation issues. Converting to a Forge mod is something that needs to happen anyways, to ensure greater mod compatibility.


Pulchra

The Continuum support add-on for the latest Pulchra update is now complete! This add-on should add proper specular map support for the new SEUS Renewed and Continuum 2.0, and you can find a comparison below showcasing what specular maps can do in your average Minecraft house

You can see on the bottom, specular adds a whole new depth to textures both lighting and reflection wise (looking at the floor and walls).

I am also pleased to announce that we will soon be migrating away from Google drive towards our own download servers, which will enable for direct access to Pulchra and Continuum immediately after purchase. This should help with future purchases as it will no longer require a g-mail account, and it should prevent any mishaps about not recieving invites for either product.


In Conclusion...

Let's take a step back for a moment, to the very beginning of the development of Continuum 2.0.

Initial Commit: July 31st

Optimization of Ambient Occlusion: December 28th

We've made great progress over these last few months, and with a lot more happening behind the scenes, we hope to improve our shaders, resource pack, and renderer even further with more consistent updates as we march towards release. We here at Continuum Graphics look forward to an exciting 2018, and would like to thank all of you for supporting us through out all of 2017.

Here's to another year,

-James

 

Winter Sale is Live!

Hey guys, Luca here (You might know me as Hox from the Discord server).

The winter sale is now live,all tiers are 50% off!
The sale is live until the 31st of December.

Not much has happened since the last blog post but here's a small update.
Pulchra's 2.0 modules are now being worked on,Robin(aka Robobo) has made a new shadow bias function which greatly improves how shadows look at a distance and Joey (aka Dotmodded) is still cleaning up and organizing the code.
More on this in the next blog coming early 2018™
We wish you a merry Christmas and happy new year.

December Blog 2.0; An apology, a giveaway and updates on all the things

General updates on the Blog

Hey guys, Seth here (You might know me as Soulshot96 from the Discord server). I'll be writing this month's blog in James's place, as he has some personal stuff to take care of. 

So, to start, I'd like to apologize for our last blog being late (multiple times), and then having to be taken down so soon after being published because of errors. Hopefully moving forward, we can get them up more regularly, and with fewer errors!


The New Twitter

We have also launched a Continuum Twitter account, to go alongside our Facebook, Instagram, and Discord (feel free to follow us on all of those as well, if you'd like). So to celebrate, and get into the Holiday spirit, we are running a giveaway all month long. You can enter here: 

Even if you already have a package, you can follow the Twitter for general updates about Continuum and our other projects.

Anyway, on to the Blog. It has been almost two months since our last blog, so I'm sure you're wondering; what have we been up to? 


Continuum

Work on Continuum has been slowly pressing onward, with PBR Wave Generation implemented, as well as Volumetric Caustics. They are both in fairly early stages but the work on Volumetric Caustics should be finished in about two weeks time. If there are no surprises of course. We do not currently have an ETA for the wave generation, but soon™.

Here are a few teasers for both of these new effects (both of which are now available to test for users with access to the alpha);

First pass of PBR Wave Generation for Continuum 2.0

Continuum 2.0's new Volumetric Caustic tech in its first iterations...

Another addition to Continuum is the new Tone Mapper. It allows basic image adjustments of saturation, contrast, contrast midpoint, gain and lift, as well as color tint options for gain and lift. You can adjust the main settings via the shader settings. That can be found under Camera > Camera Effects > Post Processing.

Basic Tone Mapping options in shader settings > Camera > Camera Effects > Post Processing

Advanced users can also adjust the Tint of gain and lift via the final.fsh(lines 261 and 262; edit the RGB values after vec3). Users with Alpha access can start playing with these new options right now, and more might be added in the future.

Configurable Tone Mapping and Tint options in final.fsh (recommended only for advanced users)

Joey (DotModded) is also researching new methods for rendering clouds and water, as well as taking a week to clean up Continuum 2.0's code, as it has apparently gotten a bit disorganized. 

Continuum 2.0 is still on track for a Q1 2018 release. With a new Beta release soon™.


Pulchra

Josh (Blockstate), recently released a fairly large update that he has been working on for quite some time. Update notes are as follows: 

  • New custom models module -Added 10 custom models
  • New moon module -Added moon
  • New misc module -Added 2 textures
  • New Loading Screen Small and Large module -Added loading screen
  • New GUI module -Added background texture -Added background panorama
  • New Sounds module -Added menu3.ogg
  • Updated optifine textures module -Replaced 12 old textures -Added 38 textures
  • Updated block textures module -Replaced 115 old textures -Added 64 new textures
  • Updated font module -Replaced old font with a new and much better font
  • Updated better foliage module -Added 57 new textures -Replaced all old textures

Modules that add support for Continuum 2.0 are still being worked on but all other modules are uploaded on the google drive. ETA should be sometime this week for 2.0 support.

Here are a bunch of screenshots of the new textures for your veiwing pleasure. 


Nova

Dethraid has made some decent progress on translating Nova to Vulkan. Though progress has been slow, because in Vulkan you have to do a lot of things manually, versus things being done automatically in OpenGL. 

His current, and shorter term goal is to get the translated Vulkan version of Nova to the same level of the OpenGL version when the screenshot above was taken. He is about one-third of the way there. 

It can now load textures/shaders and uses the same format for shaders that the Bedrock Engine uses. If you don't know the Bedrock Engine is, it is the new unified engine for every version of Minecraft except the Java version. So, everything from the Pocket Edition to the Xbox One X version. This means that Nova will be able to load shaders and textures from those versions of Minecraft. Which may not be useful at the moment, but should be when Bedrock becomes more established and more shaders and textures are purpose-built for it. 

Be sure to follow Dethraids Nova Twitter (above), or check the update channel on the Nova Discord to keep up to date with Nova. 


In closing...

We are going to try to cut down the delays on Blogs as much as possible going forward, and release them more consistently. There should now be a new one about once a month.

Before I close this out, I'd like to remind you guys to not forget to enter the giveaway, and more importantly, at least if you're from the US, don't forget about the fight for Net Neutrality. I can't stress it's importance enough. We can't give up on this. I'm going to link a few sites below that will help you contact your representatives about this. Please take a minute and do so if you're able. 

Thanks for reading, and supporting us. See you in the next Blog. 

-Seth

 

 

Bi-Weekly Blog 10/14/17: Instagram page and other things

Guess what? Blog 4 actually went up on schedule! And with the release of the Beta branch for Continuum as well as a brand new Instagram page, we have a lot more things to talk about. For now, lets start off with whats been happening with Nova.

Nova Renderer: Now with lightmaps and water geometry, and different block-states (debug)

Nova Renderer: Now with lightmaps and water geometry, and different block-states (debug)

So as you can tell from above, Nova Renderer is getting somewhere, now with proper transparent glass, water geometry, and being able to show different block-states properly like open and closed doors, cornered stairs, etc. David is also planning on switching back to a Vulkan renderer vs OpenGL 4.6, hoping to bring more benefits to multi-core processors.

That's all for now on Nova, lets move on to Pulchra.

 

2017-10-11_16.08.59.png
2017-10-12_11.04.30.png

The progress of Pulchra has been pretty odd so to speak. although many textures are complete, Josh wants to re-do or enhance a lot of them, as well as work on all of them at the same time instead of focusing on 1 texture, then moving to the next. The next update is anticipated to launch some time next month.

 

Continuum 2.0 Beta 1

Continuum 2.0 Beta 1

Continuum 2.0 Beta 2

Continuum 2.0 Beta 2

Beta 2 is due for launch tomorrow, with several optimizations to volumetric light and volumetric clouds as a whole. Although not as big as promised, I guarantee that we have something big in store coming soon.

ssd.PNG

We have an Instagram account! Now you may be wondering, what would we ever do with an Instagram account? We have decided to host screenshot contests! In which you send us screenshots through any possible means such as Facebook, Discord, Instagram, etc. and we feature a winner every month!

 

The winner chosen will either receive

Tier 1 of Pulchra + some unannounced extra perks (which will also come to Tier 2 and 3)

An upgrade from Tier 1 to Tier 2,

Or an upgrade from Tier 2 to Tier 3,

anyone with Tier 3 will win a $25 gift card to use on whatever they please.

The main rules are:

The screenshot must be using Continuum Shader 1.3 or 2.0,

 You can submit as many entries as you want,

You can only win once,

Any image editing will result in immediate disqualification, meaning that all mods and resource packs are fair game. 

 

That's just about all we have for this week, Check in on Halloween for a special update with Continuum.

-James

Bi-Weekly Blog 9/26/17: Secrets

Hey guys, welcome to blog post 3. Unlike Half-Life 3, this blog post actually managed to be finalized (in valve time). No worries, this was only a hiccup in our schedule due to other unforeseen circumstances. Anyways, Now with all that out of the way, we can discuss the current status of Nova Renderer, Pulchra, and Continuum.

David has been hard at work continuing the development of Nova Renderer, and with so much behind the scenes, you guys haven't actually seen anything yet. However, today marks the day in which Nova Renderer has reached a playable stage!

As you can see, Nova clearly renders blocks now, and chunks load a little bit slower than Minecraft right now, which is impressive considering that most of the development time right now is grabbing assets from the Minecraft client, and actually rendering blocks was done in a relatively small amount of time, so expect greater chunk loading times soon!

 

Now onto Pulchra,

21731730_1915181775402090_704721087247774590_o.jpg

More on that later...

 

Finally, onto Continuum

The performance of Continuum as of now has been significantly impacted by about 40-50 fps,

This is the FPS of latest build of Continuum at default settings

This is the FPS of latest build of Continuum at default settings

This is the FPS at which volumetric clouds are disabled

This is the FPS at which volumetric clouds are disabled

This is the FPS at which the Volumetric Renderer found in blog post 1 is disabled

This is the FPS at which the Volumetric Renderer found in blog post 1 is disabled

Performance is not doing so well right now, The shader is rendering air, moisture in the air, earth shadow, and the biggest culprit here is the Volumetric light being rendered from clouds, as well as the cloud shadows being cast. This will all be fixed in due time but for now, it is best that you disable Volumetric Renderer as well as Global Illumination.

 

That's all for now, you may have noticed that this blog seemed a lot more anti climactic then anticipated... The plan was to talk about 3 more topics that happen to be a lot more secretive than I thought, so maybe in the next blog, I could possibly cover some of these vague details. But for now, This is the end of blog post 3, tune on October 13th to find out some details about whats next for this company ;)

 

-James

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Bi-Weekly Blog 8/18/17: Status updates on Continuum, and the new blog standard.

Hey guys, Welcome to Blog Post 2. This weeks post is going to be shorter than last time and future blog posts will likely stay this particular length because the first blog was actually meant to be split into two parts

The new standard of blogs will go over updates on Continuum products, with other topics such as company stuff being separate blogs, meaning you could possibly get 2 blogs in 2 weeks!

With that out of the way, lets discuss the status of Continuum's updates...

As you can see, there has been a significant drop in Continuum alpha build updates. With Continuum Graphics finally being registered as a company, there is still lots of legal work to be finished before we can get back on track with the frequency of updates. Rest assured, this legal work will likely be completed sometime next week so be on the look out for a flood of updates.

As you can see, there has been a significant drop in Continuum alpha build updates. With Continuum Graphics finally being registered as a company, there is still lots of legal work to be finished before we can get back on track with the frequency of updates. Rest assured, this legal work will likely be completed sometime next week so be on the look out for a flood of updates.

You can see that there is mention of optimization in these past few weeks, therefore, I would like to show you some of the progress the team has made over the past 2 weeks with the build at launch versus the most recent one.

This was the build available for download at launch.

This was the build available for download at launch.

This is the new build found today, much better...

This is the new build found today, much better...

Note that the FPS on the most recent build with Pulchra at 512x resolution gives about the same FPS as the first build

Note that the FPS on the most recent build with Pulchra at 512x resolution gives about the same FPS as the first build

Some more screenshots if you needed those.

Well that's all we have for this week, check in on the next 2 weeks to discuss the current status Nova Renderer.

-James

Bi-Weekly Blog 8/4/17: Continuum 2.0 Features and more!

We have a Discord server! Continuum has launched an official discord server for better interaction with the community as well as better support, Click here to join!

We have a Discord server!

Continuum has launched an official discord server for better interaction with the community as well as better support, Click here to join!

The Pulchra Revisited PBR Extension is now available for Continuum! The PBR Module is now available for download! All blocks now have proper specular mapping meaning that Pulchra fully supports the new versions of Continuum 2.0. The PBR Module is available for all resolutions for free, download it now in the Google Drive folder.

The Pulchra Revisited PBR Extension is now available for Continuum!

The PBR Module is now available for download! All blocks now have proper specular mapping meaning that Pulchra fully supports the new versions of Continuum 2.0. The PBR Module is available for all resolutions for free, download it now in the Google Drive folder.

The new direction of Continuum 2.0 After many months of development, Alpha builds of Continuum 2.0 have finally been released. In these months, we have cleaned up and replaced nearly all prior code from Continuum version 1.3. The new direction of Continuum is very unique in contrast to our previous works. We will be moving to a fully PBR back-end while preserving the artistic style found in previous versions. Current features found in alpha builds, as well as planned features, will be using highly advanced techniques found in many AAA games. With research from Frostbite, Unreal, Nvidia, Disney, and Pixar Animations, we have come up with what will be the most sophisticated graphics processing ever to be introduced to Minecraft. For starters, Continuum 2.0 has moved to a photometric pipeline,which means that all inputs are supplied with real world values such as color temperature measured in kelvin. This will introduce proper integration of all light sources and correction of light ratios that are based off of real world values, which in turn, allows for a more natural and realistic feel in Minecraft. With this new photometric pipeline, we can accurately simulate how certain things should look if they were to be seen through a real world camera or a human eye. Current implementations will contain an Auto and Manual camera mode, as well as an Eye Adaptation mode to be found in later builds. In Manual Camera, mode the shader will behave like a real world,  full manual camera with camera controls such as Aperture, Shutter Speed, and ISO, Allowing you to capture the perfect screenshot. Not to mention the modifiable 3D lut and tone map, that allows for complex, customizable color grading that will give you full control over the look and feel. You can even choose to share presets with others using our convenient and simple library system.

The new direction of Continuum 2.0

After many months of development, Alpha builds of Continuum 2.0 have finally been released. In these months, we have cleaned up and replaced nearly all prior code from Continuum version 1.3. The new direction of Continuum is very unique in contrast to our previous works. We will be moving to a fully PBR back-end while preserving the artistic style found in previous versions. Current features found in alpha builds, as well as planned features, will be using highly advanced techniques found in many AAA games. With research from Frostbite, Unreal, Nvidia, Disney, and Pixar Animations, we have come up with what will be the most sophisticated graphics processing ever to be introduced to Minecraft.

For starters, Continuum 2.0 has moved to a photometric pipeline,which means that all inputs are supplied with real world values such as color temperature measured in kelvin. This will introduce proper integration of all light sources and correction of light ratios that are based off of real world values, which in turn, allows for a more natural and realistic feel in Minecraft. With this new photometric pipeline, we can accurately simulate how certain things should look if they were to be seen through a real world camera or a human eye. Current implementations will contain an Auto and Manual camera mode, as well as an Eye Adaptation mode to be found in later builds. In Manual Camera, mode the shader will behave like a real world,  full manual camera with camera controls such as Aperture, Shutter Speed, and ISO, Allowing you to capture the perfect screenshot. Not to mention the modifiable 3D lut and tone map, that allows for complex, customizable color grading that will give you full control over the look and feel. You can even choose to share presets with others using our convenient and simple library system.

This feature ties quite nicely into the next section which going over our PBR Camera Post Processing. With inputs to the camera, we can accurately recreate common lens effects like Depth of Field (DOF). The DOF in Continuum will be customizable on a per blade basis, allowing for a custom aperture shape which in turn allows for complex bokeh images. Other effects such as bloom, motion blur, and film grain are also all done on a physical basis to allow for a proper filmic feel. However, in the Eye Adaptation mode, we are currently researching methods to have the player camera adapt in the same way the eye does based the human eye’s response to different wavelengths and powers. Talking about the PBR back-end, The revamped lighting system starts with the primary light source in the game, the sun. The sun is provided with a configurable Lux and temperature (Changing these will break accuracy from earth however if you are simulating a place that is not earth it is totally acceptable :p). The sunlight is then absorbed and scattered by the atmosphere, creating an accurate PBR sky. Both the sun and the moon are then used to light the PBR clouds which is the last step in our sky lighting systems. These clouds will be highly configurable in both density type and size, allowing you to create nearly any weather condition you can dream of.

This feature ties quite nicely into the next section which going over our PBR Camera Post Processing. With inputs to the camera, we can accurately recreate common lens effects like Depth of Field (DOF). The DOF in Continuum will be customizable on a per blade basis, allowing for a custom aperture shape which in turn allows for complex bokeh images. Other effects such as bloom, motion blur, and film grain are also all done on a physical basis to allow for a proper filmic feel. However, in the Eye Adaptation mode, we are currently researching methods to have the player camera adapt in the same way the eye does based the human eye’s response to different wavelengths and powers.

Talking about the PBR back-end, The revamped lighting system starts with the primary light source in the game, the sun. The sun is provided with a configurable Lux and temperature (Changing these will break accuracy from earth however if you are simulating a place that is not earth it is totally acceptable :p). The sunlight is then absorbed and scattered by the atmosphere, creating an accurate PBR sky. Both the sun and the moon are then used to light the PBR clouds which is the last step in our sky lighting systems. These clouds will be highly configurable in both density type and size, allowing you to create nearly any weather condition you can dream of.

Our Volumetric weather system will simulate wind fronts based on the Beaufort scale. This scale is the scientific standard of driving different wind conditions, where 0 equals virtually no wind while 11 is the equivalent of a hurricane. This volumetric weather system will drive things like water surface simulation, clouds, and waving vegetation. The surface has a ton of PBR lighting techniques such as proper directional diffuse sampling of all light sources including the sun, sky, clouds, and torches/glowstone. All ambient light is gathered by a new method of ambient occlusion a member of our team came up with (Based on the Burley BRDF and Alchemy Ambient Obscurance methods). This ensures proper and natural lighting that can be found in your Minecraft world  

Our Volumetric weather system will simulate wind fronts based on the Beaufort scale. This scale is the scientific standard of driving different wind conditions, where 0 equals virtually no wind while 11 is the equivalent of a hurricane. This volumetric weather system will drive things like water surface simulation, clouds, and waving vegetation.

The surface has a ton of PBR lighting techniques such as proper directional diffuse sampling of all light sources including the sun, sky, clouds, and torches/glowstone. All ambient light is gathered by a new method of ambient occlusion a member of our team came up with (Based on the Burley BRDF and Alchemy Ambient Obscurance methods). This ensures proper and natural lighting that can be found in your Minecraft world

 

The shadow method that Continuum will be using is Variance Shadow Maps (VSM). This method is outstanding for its great reduction of aliasing and peter panning. On top of that, we will also be adapting a new Dual PCSS method we have come up with, featuring fully proper stained glass shadows with proper penumbras. As a bonus, we will also be doing small scale ray traced shadows for those small needed details. Continuum will also use a new kind of specular reflection method that we believe is the most superior. This method is not only a fully PBR SSR ray tracer, it also allows for us to create a shadow space ray tracer as well, allowing for offscreen reflections. All reflections will be fitted with a dual layer GGX BRDF using a height correlated Smith approximation. The dual layers will allow for proper withering on surfaces whenever raining or near water. All air in continuum will be rendered using volumetrics, having proper volumetric atmospheric scattering, fog, and larger rain particles. All scattering done underwater will be volumetric as well, responding to the waters waves creating gorgeous underwater caustics and light shafts. Clouds will also influence shadows and volumetric scattering allowing for the morning rays to pierce through the clouds.

The shadow method that Continuum will be using is Variance Shadow Maps (VSM). This method is outstanding for its great reduction of aliasing and peter panning. On top of that, we will also be adapting a new Dual PCSS method we have come up with, featuring fully proper stained glass shadows with proper penumbras. As a bonus, we will also be doing small scale ray traced shadows for those small needed details.

Continuum will also use a new kind of specular reflection method that we believe is the most superior. This method is not only a fully PBR SSR ray tracer, it also allows for us to create a shadow space ray tracer as well, allowing for offscreen reflections. All reflections will be fitted with a dual layer GGX BRDF using a height correlated Smith approximation. The dual layers will allow for proper withering on surfaces whenever raining or near water.

All air in continuum will be rendered using volumetrics, having proper volumetric atmospheric scattering, fog, and larger rain particles. All scattering done underwater will be volumetric as well, responding to the waters waves creating gorgeous underwater caustics and light shafts. Clouds will also influence shadows and volumetric scattering allowing for the morning rays to pierce through the clouds.

These are the main features that will be added through Alpha and Beta and will be fully prepared for Continuum 2.0s full release in early Q1 of 2018.

CONTINUUM 2.0'S FEATURE LIST:

  • Full Artist Customizability
  • Customizable Color Grading using known softwares.
  • Fully PBR and customizable Camera Systems.
  • Photometric Lighting Systems.
  • PBR Eye Adaptation.
  • PBR Post Process Effects.
  • PBR diffuse lighting.
  • PBR specular lighting.
  • PBR Global Illumination.
  • PBR Sky, Clouds, and Atmospherics.
  • PBR Weather Systems.
  • PBR Volumetrics.
  • PBR Dual Layer rough Refraction.
  • Real Parallax Occlusion Mapping.
  • Dual PCSS.
  • Colored light/volumetrics.
  • Dual Layer Reflectance for simulating weathering on objects.
  • Full PBR texture support from resource pack makers.
  • Cinematic and Photography Tools.

 

That's all the time we have for today, Check in two weeks from now to find out what we're up to.

-James

Pulchra Revisited Update v6.4.17

v6.4.17 Update Log

  • Added cactus bottom, side and top
  • Added command block textures (POM is going to be fixed)
  • Added clay
  • Added daylight detector
  • Added dead bush textures with three variants
  • Added end brick
  • Replaced end stone
  • Added fern
  • Replaced hardened clay
  • Added hay block side and top
  • Added packed ice
  • Added jukebox (WIP)
  • Added acacia, big/dark oak, birch, jungle, oak and spruce log tops
  • Added mob spawner
  • Replaced brick
  • Added nether brick (WIP)
  • Replaced netherrack
  • Added noteblock
  • Replaced all planks
  • Replaced all red sandstone and added carved red sandstone variants
  • Replaced all sandstone and added carved sandstone variants
  • Added slime
  • Added soul sand (WIP)
  • Created new module that adds Better Foliage mod support.
  • Added cat tales to Better Foliage module
  • Replaced font
  • Tweaked POM levels
  • Added "No Glass Texture" module which removes the glass textures

Pulchra Revisited Update v5.16.17

v5.16.17 Update Log

  • Removed "Glass Fix" module
  • Added built in "Glass Fix" to "Blocks" module
  • Added more biome specific textures for sand
  • Added a biome specific texture for coarse dirt
  • Replaced cobblestone texture
  • Added mossy cobblestone texture
  • Replaced farmland textures (wet/dry)
  • Replaced glowstone texture
  • Replaced gravel texture
  • Replaced iron block texture
  • Replaced acacia log texture
  • Replaced big/dark oak texture
  • Replaced and added all stonebrick textures except for carved
  • Added red sandstone placeholder textures
  • Added sandstone placeholder texture
  • Added ice
  • Added lapis storage block
  • Added netherrack
  • Added magma
  • Added sand to "Blocks" module since it was missing
  • Tweaked POM levels
  • Added snow and biome specific texture
  • Added bedrock
  • Fixed biome specific textures replacing incorrect blocks
  • Fixed "Font" module

Pulchra Revisited Update v5.12.17

v5.12.17 Update Log:

  • Updated module icons (Optifine module icons are a WIP)

  • Improved performance on the resourcepack selection screen

  • Updated pack.mcmeta files to give more information for certain modules

  • Removed version number from pack.mcmeta files

  • Fixed download issues (all modules will be in zip format)

  • POM adjustments

  • Added all plank textures

  • Renamed MCPatcher module to be Optifine

New Website, What Are We Up To?

We have a new website, welcome to it.

If any of the download links don't work, or you notice anything else unusual about the website, smash the "Contact" button in the upper right.

We started work on a Continuum Cleanup recently. It's in its early stages, but already showing a reasonable performance boost over Continuum 1.3 (144 FPS up from 132 FPS). Continuum 1.3 is a monster, past coding practices of its beginner developers have accumulated into over 13,000 lines of incoherent and unoptimized code. I am confident we can reach at least a 50% performance boost in the end, and hopefully we can fix most of the bugs once the code is structured.

Ebin is on hiatus currently, I just haven't felt like working on it. Joey has been investigating GLSL extensions and thinks it might be possible to backport Ebin to GLSL version 120. Basically, Intel compatibility might be on the way in Ebin.

 

- BruceKnowsHow