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SunBurn 1.3.2 Launched!

Last post 1/10/2012 4:42 PM by Derrick. 11 replies.
  • 6/3/2010 5:10 PM

    SunBurn 1.3.2 Launched!

    We are very excited to announce SunBurn 1.3.2, the first full release of 1.3 is now live! As mentioned in previous blogs this release is absolutely massive, and easily the biggest SunBurn update ever.

    It includes SunBurn's new engine-centric design, component system, new and more streamlined editor, terrain system, volume lights, 2D rendering, avatar rendering, and much, much more.

    And like all SunBurn updates, it's completely free for SunBurn Engine developers!

     

    Beyond Ambient Lighting

    To avoid flat ambient lighting the initial SunBurn release introduced material-level ambient occlusion, which adds a significant amount of depth even to ambient lit scenes.

    SunBurn's material-level ambient occlusion has the added benefit of being very lightweight and compatible with both forward and deferred rendering. In fact it's so lightweight the effect is always on, there's practically no performance benefit to turning it off.

    For over a year this technique made a considerable impact on SunBurn games, demos, and visualizations. But this time around we wanted even more awesomeness. :)



    Indirect Ambient Lighting

    To further enhance SunBurn Engine's existing ambient lighting we've added another SunBurn unique feature: material-level indirect lighting. Once again the effect is very lightweight, always enabled in deferred rendering, and is absolutely stunning.

    SunBurn's material-level indirect lighting adds considerable lighting depth, and at detail levels ambient occlusion cannot achieve. The depth is also controlled by the scene's ambient light object, making it easy to tune in-game for the best possible visuals.

     

    Full 2D Rendering

    Probably the most exciting new SunBurn Engine feature is full 2D rendering. This was certainly one of our favorite R&D projects over the past year, and one we couldn't wait to get started on (we started immediately after the initial SunBurn launch)!

    This is not just a 2D renderer. It's full 2D support for all SunBurn features: lighting, shadows, materials, your existing custom effects, post processing, forward rendering, deferred rendering, the new component / manager system, scene interface, …, EVERYTHING. :)

    SunBurn also supports rendering 2D scenes to texture for display in 3D scenes, and vice-versa.
    This latest SunBurn Engine release includes two 2D starter kits, one for Windows and one for Xbox 360 – both featuring the cool 2D demo we've been showing off:



    SunBurn's 2D rendering uses a very lightweight and familiar interface based largely on XNA's SpriteBatch. However SunBurn also supports submitting static sprites once and re-rendering them many times, making the interface much faster than SpriteBatch (which requires all sprites to be submitted / drawn every frame).

     

    Terrain System

    Even before its launch we considered including some type of terrain system in SunBurn, and in fact the Tiling Terrain example was one of our first SunBurn examples. Unfortunately many terrain systems are either very dynamic but cpu heavy, or very lightweight but static – neither of these options were acceptable in our opinion.

    So instead of rushing a terrain system out, we spent the past year researching tech and (more importantly) getting a feel for how we and the SunBurn community ideally would want to use the system. Interestingly our initial assessment was fairly accurate – the ideal system should be lightweight on both the cpu and gpu, as well as highly dynamic (so imported or content pipeline generated meshes were out).



    Based on this we developed a height map based terrain, with configurable tessellation and lod transition, blend mapping with several material layers, normal and specular mapping, and entirely gpu driven. The terrain also has a constant and very reasonable poly count regardless of the height map size or detail, which means the terrain can be tuned to a specific polygon budget.

    And because the terrain height map is processed on the gpu, the terrain is entirely dynamic. Meaning you can write shaders to procedurally morph, edit, and erode the terrain, as well as the blend map.

     

    New Editor

    This release also includes the new SunBurn editor; the streamlined, cleaner, and better looking front-end we demoed at GameFest.  While the new editor is feature-wise similar, the ui provides a larger 3D viewport, shows more controls on-screen, and allows stacking and organizing object browsers.

    Probably the best new feature are real-time assets – textures are automatically updated in-game when they change on disk.  This adds a whole new dimension to game workflow, you can edit textures in Photoshop, Gimp, ... and see the changes in SunBurn without toggling back and forth.

    Originally we planned to release the new editor shortly after GameFest, however while working on it we had the opportunity develop an even better workflow.  Now instead of being a separate application, the new editor is integrated into SunBurn – hitting F11 opens the editor without tabbing over to the Windows Start menu, and the editor hotkey is customizable.  In addition we've added detailed tooltips throughout the editor.

     

    More to Come!

    And we're still not done talking about all of SunBurn 1.3's new features.  Check out our latest dev blogs below for more information!

    Countdown to SunBurn 1.3.2 (SunBurn's engine-centric design, component system, and new editor)
    SunBurn 1.3.2: The New Editor (a look at the new editor from its lead developer)

    -John Kabus

  • 7/6/2010 10:42 PM In reply to

    Re: SunBurn 1.3.2 Launched!

    gorgeous but way to expensive XD
  • 7/7/2010 9:15 AM In reply to

    Re: SunBurn 1.3.2 Launched!

    Its a lot compared to the price of XNA 3.1, sure :P
    But I've been using sunburn for about a week now and I can see its saved me months of development time and it's been rather easy to integrate it into my existing framework.
    I guess its value depends on how many hours you would spend writing a rendering system of this quality by yourself, and whether you plan to release a game and recuperate some of the costs!
  • 7/7/2010 11:32 AM In reply to

    Re: SunBurn 1.3.2 Launched!

    Oh and also, don't forget that Sunburn Framework is free for trying out, learning and evaluating!
  • 7/7/2010 7:00 PM In reply to

    Re: SunBurn 1.3.2 Launched!

    is there a discount for students or premium members?
  • 7/7/2010 7:02 PM In reply to

    Re: SunBurn 1.3.2 Launched!

    yea i do agree it is a magnificent engine and definatly could be an amazing asset :)
  • 7/7/2010 9:43 PM In reply to

    Re: SunBurn 1.3.2 Launched!

    Hi Blind Bartemis,

    Yes, there is a 25% discount for Creators Club Premium members.  While we don't have student discounts we do offer the SunBurn Framework for free.  It contains SunBurn's core API and features, which students, educators, and hobbyists are welcome to use - it also makes a great evaluation tool.

    Hi Rinse, thanks for the compliments!


  • 10/16/2011 8:35 PM In reply to

    Re: SunBurn 1.3.2 Launched!

    You've convinced me to try out Sunburn.  How long will the Engine be available for $150 USD?

    I've downloaded the Framework and will play with it.
  • 10/28/2011 3:56 PM In reply to

    Re: SunBurn 1.3.2 Launched!

    Hi Derrick,

    Derrick:
    How long will the Engine be available for $150 USD?


    As far as I know there are no plans to increase the price, so you should be able to purchase SunBurn Indie at that price for the foreseeable future.

    This thread has some great announcements, but we've released a ton of newer features in SunBurn 2.0, which you can check out here.

    Let me know if this helps!
  • 1/10/2012 3:18 AM In reply to

    Re: SunBurn 1.3.2 Launched!

    Does it support XNA 4.0?
  • 1/10/2012 1:46 PM In reply to

    Re: SunBurn 1.3.2 Launched!

    Sunburn 2.0 does. Read the thread linked to in the post above yours.
  • 1/10/2012 4:42 PM In reply to

    Re: SunBurn 1.3.2 Launched!

    Sorry about that.

    Will we get a free framework download of Sunburn 2.0 to test drive?  I only found one for Sunburn 1.3.2.

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