We are pleased to announce that we will be releasing the first major update to the built-in materials across Studio! These updates will take these materials to a new level of realism and fully utilize PBR from the ground up.
In addition to that, we’re happy to announce a list of materials we’re adding to the built-in library! Finally, we need your feedback and suggestions to help us extend the build-in materials even further, so please read this announcement and comment below!
When we started this project, we had several goals in mind:
- Strive for a high level of realism, using real world examples to drive our direction.
- Unify the appearance of similar parts and terrain materials, making them more compatible.
- Author for the most common uses for each material to maximize usefulness and uniqueness of each material.
- Improve the responsiveness of color shifting terrain and parts, giving you greater range of possibilities.
Each material has been reimagined from the ground up to look closer to its real-world counterpart. We also wanted to make the different materials more distinct, so users have plenty of options for their terrain and parts.
First, let’s talk about terrain! Terrain materials were very important to us because of how much they can root a game world when done properly. These updates will also go a long way to allow you the opportunity to more fully realize some biomes.
Second, let’s go over Parts (terrain can’t get all the love). Part materials are central to many games, whether or not they’re using the terrain, making a realistic game or a cartoony one. We wanted to update the part materials to both allow them to blend better with their terrain counterparts, and also give you broader visual range in the current built-in materials.
…Speaking of built-in materials, we also wanted to expand the current part materials to include ones that were previously exclusive to terrain. Now you can have snowballs, lava columns, and asphalt roads!
This is by no means the end of our expansion, so keep an eye out for opportunities to share your opinion on additional materials!
One small bit of house-cleaning we’re doing is renaming several of the existing materials. This way, the existing and new materials will have clearer relationships and a clearer connection to the real-world materials they’re based off of.
Changing this won’t affect the enums called for the particular materials. It simply changes the naming/representation in the material list.
Examples of this renaming are:
- Pavers (Brick Pavers)
- Rock (Gabbro Rock)
- Foil (Aluminum Foil)
- Diamond Plate (Diamond Plate Steel)
- Metal (Scratched Aluminum)
- Corroded Metal (Rusted Iron)
- Fabric (Knitted Fabric)
- Ground (Dirt Ground)
- Grass (Wild Grass Ground)
- Leafy Grass (Leafy Grass Ground)
- Wood (Wood Grain)
Details of Beta Release
This material update will be part of an opt-in beta initially. You will have the option to turn it on in Studio and see their impact on your games. We will also take applications for whitelisting places so you can publish your game with the new materials for users to see!
Once we’ve gotten all your fantastic feedback, the updated materials will be applied across all games, including existing games.
This beta will contain the updated materials for terrain and parts, as well as 13 more part materials that were previously exclusive to terrain:
- Cracked Lava
- Leafy Grass
Lastly, we are pleased to announce we are working on expanding both terrain and part materials to include many more options. We want to empower our community to create what they envision with a more robust built-in library. Below is a list of the materials we’re looking to add:
- Terrain/Part Materials
- Wood Bark (Pine)
- Tile Surface (ceramic)
- Marshland (dense/sparse emergent)
- Leafy Dirt Ground
- Snowy Grass
- Jungle Floor
- Snowy Rock
- Dried Leaf Ground
- Gravel Ground
- Plains Grass Ground
- Part Only Materials
- Stucco Plaster
- Cardboard Paper
- Painted Metal
- Iron (refined)
- Fur (short hair)
- Full Grain Leather
Now, we want to hear from you!
What other materials you feel need to be added to the built-in library? What real-world materials are you missing? This can be terrain ideas, part materials, or both!
Our continued mission to power imagination is driven by what you need. So comment with materials/imagery you feel would unlock your creations, and we will consider adding them to future material releases!