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12. November 2019


Today Epic Games have announced the acquisition of Quixel, the maker of the massive MegaScans PBR texturing library as well as texture creation and management tools Quixel Bridge and Mixer.  The acquisition is a gigantic boon for Unreal Engine developers, as they will get access to the massive texture libraries for free!  Additionally, even non-UE4 users benefit from this deal, as Megascans subscriptions are being improved and Mixer and Bridge 2020 are both being released for free!

Details from the Unreal Engine blog:

Today we are thrilled to announce that Quixel, creator of the world’s largest photogrammetry asset library and bundled toolset, has joined the Epic Games family!
Founded in 2011, Quixel is based in Sweden, and over 100 employees across six countries worldwide are joining the Epic Games team. Quixel’s products include Megascans, an extensive library of 2D and 3D photogrammetry assets, supported by companion applications Bridge and Mixer.

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As part of making the Quixel Megascans library of more than 10,000 assets free for all use with Unreal Engine, ten high-resolution packs have been shared today for free on the Unreal Engine Marketplace, as well as assets from the popular Iceland collection used in the “Rebirth” cinematic short. Additional asset packs will be made available for free on the Marketplace at a future date within the Unreal Engine 4.24 release timeframe.

And more details from the Quixel blog:

Megascans becomes free for use with Unreal Engine

The Megascans library is now completely free for use with Unreal Engine.

That means that if you are using Megascans with UE4, you get free, unlimited, and instant access to all of Megascans through Bridge and Mixer, and a wealth of Megascans packs on the Unreal Engine Marketplace. Ten high-resolution packs have been shared today for free on the Unreal Engine Marketplace, with additional asset packs being made available for free on the Marketplace at a future date within the Unreal Engine 4.24 release timeframe. This way, you can access the content in whatever way you prefer.

If you’re using Megascans only with UE4, we’ll refund all of your subscriptions for 2019. If you have an active subscription, log in to find out how to obtain a refund. If you have made Megascans purchases in 2019, but do not have an active subscription, we’ll reach out to you regarding refunds.

Megascans subscription prices lowered for everyone

Furthermore, with the generous backing of Epic, we’re immediately slashing the pricing of Megascans, giving you nearly twice as much content to download, and removing the resolution cap—for everyone, regardless of what engine, DCC or renderer you love and rely on. We’re also giving you a refund for the remaining duration of your subscription period to allow you to hop onto one of our new plans. If you have an active subscription, log in to find out how to obtain a refund.

Bridge and Mixer 2020 will be 100% free for everyone

But that’s not all. Epic is helping us make the upcoming 2020 versions of Bridge and Mixer 100% free for everyone, with no subscription required and both fully featured. We are releasing these new free versions within a few weeks from now and I’m thrilled to finally be able to share with you the upcoming updates.

Excellent news all around!  If you want to learn more, be sure to check out our video below.  If you want to see Quixel in action, be sure to check out our earlier hands-on video.

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3. November 2019


TexGraph is a free procedural texture generation tool that runs on the Windows platform.  TexGraph is described as follows:

TexGraph is a procedural texture creation tool that let you create textures by connecting nodes in a graph. It is designed to be similar to other tools in the market but at the same time be very simple and easy to use and extent by users.

If you are a shader programmer you can create your own nodes or edit the existing ones. Check the github page https://github.com/galloscript/TexGraph-Public and the Programming Custom Nodes section of the user manual for more information.

TexGraph is available for download on Itch.io here.  While not open source, TexGraph is very easy to customize.  New nodes are simply GLSL scripts, while new models and HDR maps can easily be added to the project.

You can learn more about TexGraph and see it in action in the video below.  Another similar tool to TexGraph is the Godot based Material Maker project that you can learn more about here.

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27. October 2019


Talos is an open source Java based particle system creation tool powered by the LibGDX graphics framework.  The source code is available on GitHub under the Apache 2.0 open source license, while the executable is available here in JAR format.  Currently there is a LibGDX runtime with hopefully more game engines to follow in the future.

Version 1.05 was just released with the following features:

  • legacy libgdx particle file importer full functionality
  • Modules can now be renamed with double click on the title
  • Full Copy/Paste functionality for modules from emitter to the emitter. Works between different talos windows.
  • Additive blend mode support in renderer and config properties for emitter
  • Global dynamic user set vars (global scope input)
  • Dynamic Drag point support for visualizing vector2 values in the preview window
  • Filtered search drop-down for module creation
  • Dropping curve in empty location auto-open's module popup.
  • Preview supports background and foreground images.
  • Viewport width can be changed with exact numbers in input box instead of just scroll for zoom
  • Particle in the preview window can be moved with right-click
  • Module multi-select with rectangle hit, with SHIFT, and with Ctrl+A
  • Categorized module list
  • Some modules now have their default values exposed as input fields
  • Performance numbers such as triangles, particle count, render times and more shown in preview
  • Runtime: attached mode
  • Runtime: loopable effects and support for API methods such as pause/start/stop allow completion
  • Batch legacy import functionality
  • Export for runtime format
  • Settings dialog for default asset location
  • Module Grouping with Ctrl+G, color and custom text for module groups
  • Up & Down positioning for emitters.
  • Fixed samples list to work, now you can see 3 example .tls in File->Samples menu
  • Offset dynamic shape module
  • Module to script in java code and manipulate inputs/outputs
  • Beam Renderer module
  • Random Input slot module
  • Perlin Noise module
  • From To to Position/Size/Rotation converter module

Given the new ability to import existing LibGDX particle effects, you can download plenty of examples to play around with in this project.  If you are interested in learning LibGDX be sure to check out our complete tutorial series available here.  To learn more about Talos and see it in action, check out the video below.

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20. October 2019


The creator of MagicaVoxel just released a new free interactive path renderer for heightmaps called AerioLOD.  It is a very early version, labeled 0.0.0 and available for 32 and 64bit Windows machines.

The very brief description from the homepage:

An interactive path tracing renderer for height maps.

  • support rendering height maps of size up to 16384^2.
  • support importing and exporting 8-bit and 16-bit png images.

Current release notes:

0.0.0 - 10/19/2019

You can check out AerioLOD in action in the video below.

GameDev News


15. October 2019


Material Maker is a free and open source MIT licensed procedural texture generation tool built using (and that can run within) the Godot game engine.  Material Maker 0.6 was just released.

Details of the 0.6 release from the Itch.io news page:

  • Material Maker is now a lot more generic and nearly all generators are based on GLSL shaders that can be edited. To test this feature, just drag one from the library to the graph editor, selected the newly created node and hit Ctrl+F. The node becomes editable, and hitting the pencil button will show the shader editor that can be used to define the node's parameters, inputs, outputs, and GLSL functions that will be used to generate textures. For now it lacks diagnostic tools, so you'd better start with  code you already tested (in shadertoy for example). Since images described in GLSL are math functions, all those generators are resolution independent.
  • It is now possible to create a group of interconnected generators using Ctrl+G. This will create a new node that contains the previously selected ones, while keeping all connectivity with other nodes of the graph. To edit the new subgraph, click on the pencil button of the newly created node ; and to get back to the parent graph, use the Up button in the top left corner of the view. If a Remote node was selected, it will be used to define the new node's parameters.
  • All nodes now have embedded previews. Just click on the closed eye left of each node output to open it.
  • The 3d preview can now be moved manually, and the "O" button in its top right corner will show the preview as background of the graph view.
  • the library pane now has icons for many generators and a filter.
  • There are quite a few new generators: truchet, weave, runes, mirror and kaleidoscope.

The source code for Material Maker is hosted on GitHub, although the 0.6 code doesn’t seem to have been made an official release yet.  Material Maker can also be downloaded from within the Godot Engine, in which case it will directly create a Spatial Material ready for use in your Godot game.  The standalone release instead exports a series of PNG textures for use in whatever engine or application you wish to use.

You can learn more about Material Maker in the video below.

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