In a new video interview – shared by AMD – The Creative Assembly’s developers shared some new information about the engine powering the latest Alien game. Michael Bailey, Alien: Isolation’s Lead Engine Programmer, claimed that the game’s engine supports up to a million particles thanks to its use of computer shaders, and talked a bit about the game’s lighting system.
As Michael Bailey claimed, Creative Assembly made a lot of use of computer shaders in its game. Computer shaders were used from Creative Assembly’s radiosity solution to its GPU particles system.
“[Our] GPU particles system which specifically uses computer shaders to update, you know, thousands if not up to a million particles, lots of sparks bouncing accross the environment, and lots of embers kind of rising up and kind of flowing in a very natural way.”
Michael Bailey also talked a bit about the game’s lighting system that uses deferred lighting.
“We have a deferred system which is not traditionally good at lighting out for objects but lighting coming out of, you know, steam in the corridor and dynamic lights. It’s very important to the atmosphere that they react correctly. So we, effectively, rendered out our particles into a separate G-buffer, and until we apply our lights directly on top of that in the same way we would other items in the world. This gets the light reaction onto particles a very kind of realistic look and proper volumetric sense.”
To Creative Assembly’s credit, Alien: Isolation looks great and performs amazing on the PC platform, in a variety of graphics cards. And while there were minor shortcomings, the end result was gorgeous (especially after using SweetFX).