The Power of Lighting With Probes and Emission
Within Unity, we have many methods in which we can light a scene. Today, I’ll be going over a couple different ways we can light something, and how they work.
To start, we will take a look at emission lighting. Within Unity, emission lighting is when the colours and intensity of a material are presented in such a way as to make it appear the object is self-illuminated. Generally, there are maps that are made by the art team that detail which parts of the object will be brighter than others:
As we can see, the edges of this display case have illuminated edges, which in our scene give it the illusion that it has a source of light on it. When we go back into our editor, we can adjust the intensity of the emission in such a way so that it can either emit a lot or absolutely no light:
Within Unity, there are 2 main uses for light probes:
- Primary use is to provide high quality lighting on moving objects in your scene
- TO provide lighting information for static scenery when it is using Unity’s LOD (level of detail) system
What makes the use of light probes so efficient is that in scenes with a lot of things going on, and what looks like there could be multiple sources of light, we can implement a massive grid of probes and have effectively a single source for our light:
In order to achieve this level of lighting, there is hours worth of work put into it to allow it to work so well.