Release Notes for Version 1.5.5

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Release date: March 21, 2009

Core Engine


  • A new standard script method called "Get String Length" has been added to retrieve the length of a string. Ordinarily, a script variable would be fed into the method's "Input string" setting. The method outputs an integer.


  • The skin controller now performs skinning updates as a Job Manager task. The allows multiple models to be skinned in parallel on multi-core CPUs.
  • Depth lights no longer have a constant shadow map boundary. Instead, the boundary is calculated dynamically based on the bounding volumes in the scene being illuminated. The default method for calculating the boundary is conservative, so an optimally-sized box usually won't be calculated automatically. However, you can draw a shadow space volume (in the Spaces page) and connect the light's SHAD connector to it in order to force the light to assume a particular bounding box for the volume it illuminates. The whole point of this is that a depth light's position is no longer relevant for shadow mapping. Only the direction in which the light faces matters.
  • The post-processing pipeline can now accept a full color matrix to be applied to the final scene, enabling a wider range of special effects. The color matrix is set using the World::SetFinalColorTransform() function.


World Editor

  • Several visual improvements have been made in the World Editor:
    • All types of nodes are now rendered in the perspective viewport (zones and groups being the only ones that weren't before).
    • The volumes for triggers, emitters, spaces, physics shapes, and effects now display text on their surfaces describing the type of object for easier identification.
    • Lights, sources, and cameras now display a volume similar to the other volumetric nodes, but only when selected.
    • Infinite lights are now rendered with a big arrow showing the direction of illumination.
    • Portals now show arrows indicating the direction in which they flow.
    • Markers, models, lights, sources, cameras, and particle systems are now displayed as crosshairs with an icon attached off-center. Previously, the cubic icon would block out the background making alignment difficult.
    • Groups are now rendered as loose bounding boxes.
  • The gizmo in the World Editor now displays three new handles, colored red, green, and blue, when the rotation tool is selected. These handles can be used to rotate a node about its local axes, where red, green, and blue correspond to x, y, and z.
  • Selection locking has been added to the World Editor. While the selection is locked, a tiny lock icon appears next to the cursor to indicate that the selection can't be changed.