Check out some of the screenshots of foliage with Unreal Engine 4.7, beautiful rendering of leaves and foliage, HDR texture support, in-editor animation editing, along with hundreds of optimizations and improvements.
The new Foliage Shading Model allows light to be transmitted through grass, leaves, paper, and other materials.
Diffuse lighting on the opposite side of the surface becomes transmissive lighting on the side being shaded
- Transmissive lighting is a mix of wrap-around diffuse with a view dependent lobe for backscattering
- Subsurface color filters this lighting and can be used to represent varying thickness as well (e.g. leaf veins)
- Note that using opacity with this shading model will only affect shadow falloff distance
Foliage Rendering for Large Worlds
The foliage system has been optimized to to support huge, open environments! We now use a hierarchical system for managing and culling of foliage that scales to millions of instances! Also, we now smoothly transition between mesh LODs with a temporal fade to eliminate the annoying pop when switching LODs!