“Generating displacement from normal map for use in 3D games” by Dmitriev and Makarov

  • ©Kirill Dmitriev and Evgeny Makarov




    Generating displacement from normal map for use in 3D games



    Tessellation is one of the main features of most recent Direct3D 11 API. It enables dicing of incoming geometry on the fly and gives developer control over newly created vertices. If displacement map is available, one can displace those vertices to create rich adaptively generated content in real-time. Until recently just a few games made use of displacement maps. Bump mapping with normal maps is used much wider. Weak point of bump mapping is lack of silhouettes, occlusion, and shadows, which reveals the coarseness of geometry. However, process of converting existing content to use displacement mapping is very long and expensive, and so few game developers risk significant budgets to perform such endeavor without guaranteed investment return. We propose a relatively inexpensive solution of automatic conversion of normal maps to displacement maps.


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    2. Kaneko, T., et al, Detailed Shape Representation with Parallax Mapping. In Proceedings of ICAT 2001, pp. 205–208
    3. Microsoft, Inc. 2011. Tessellation Overview, http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ff476340(VS.85).aspx

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