Release Notes for Build 148

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Release date: March 13, 2008

  • Glow and bloom effects have been added to the post-processing phase of the rendering system. No distinction is made between glow and bloom during post-processing, but the two effects are created by different parts of the shading equations. Glow comes from the emission component's alpha channel, and bloom is determined by the intensity of the specular component. Glow and bloom are enabled on a per-material basis, and each has a check box in the Material Manager. (Glow is found under the Ambient tab, and bloom is found under the Specular tab.) Glow and bloom can be enabled or disabled globally in the Graphics Settings dialog.
  • A new generic animation controller has been added to the engine. This controller can be attached to an entity node, and it simply plays an animation resource for that entity. The animation controller also exposes play and stop functions that can be called from a script to change animations or stop the current animation.
  • The Material Manager in the World Editor has been largely redesigned. It now always displays every material that is used by a world, and all previews are rendered in real-time. The various material attribute settings have been reorganized into four panes: Diffuse, Specular, Ambient, and Texcoords. The first three panes group attributes by where they appear in the lighting equations, and the Texcoords pane contains everything related to texture coordinate transforms and animation. The New button now creates an empty material, and a Duplicate button has been added that creates a copy of the currently selected material. A Delete button has been added that removes a material from a world, but only if it is not used by anything. The Import and Export buttons still exist and function as before.
  • The World Editor now directly supports plugin modules. The external API is in a rather early state, but it is possible to create a plugin that displays new tool pages in the editor. World Editor plugins should be placed inside the Plugins/Tools/Editor/ directory so that they are loaded after the World Editor itself is loaded. Support for import and export plugins has been moved to the World Editor, and the Collada Importer plugin has been modified to work directly with the editor.
  • Up to four columns of tool pages can now be displayed in the World Editor. How many columns there are, and where they appear, is configured by selecting Editor Settings from the Layout menu. Each of the four available columns can be placed on the left or right side of the viewports when made visible. Pages can be dragged from one column to another.
  • By holding in the Control key (Command key on Mac) while clicking on the collapse or close button of a tool page, all pages in the same column can now be collapsed or closed at once. There is a new command in the Page menu that shows all available tool pages.
  • In the World Editor, the selection mask will now be automatically updated whenever a new node is drawn so that the node is always selectable right after it is created.
  • The Clone Group command in the World Editor has been replaced with the Clone command. Any node can be cloned now, and the result is a new copy of the node that refers to the same object(s).
  • The right-click popup menu in the World Editor now contains a Get Info item. Also, the Frame All and Frame Selection items in this menu now work on perspective viewports.
  • Editable text elements can now be made read-only by setting the kEditableTextReadOnly flag with the SetEditableTextFlags() function. Text can still be selected and copied from a read-only text element, but it cannot be modified by the user.
  • The Movies plugin now exposes script functions for playing, stopping, pausing, and resuming movie items inside panel effects.
  • The Collada Importer now correctly sets the default up direction to the y axis if an imported file does not indicate an up axis.