Gravity Knight Part 9: Visual Effects.
For visual effects like sparks, dust or clouds we used particles. We wanted them to pick up the simplified look of voxels in a similar way as all with other elements of the game.
Sparks and Dust Particles
To give the player a stronger impression of the knight’s moving speed we added dust particles. They were made using a default system that uses the “Sprites-Default” material instead of the “Default-Particle”. This way the particles are rendered as little squares that are a good match for the game’s voxel look. In the same way we added particles to torches and the lava falls.
For the clouds we wanted to use a particle system, too. Unfortunately particle systems that emit custom meshes require a lot of performance. Therefore we kept the shape of the clouds very simplistic. Furthermore we were able to discard the top faces and saved another 25% of mesh geometry.
The particle system itself was then created using the cloud model as a rendered mesh and an unlit shader to keep the look of the clouds surfaces flat and appropriate to the rest of the game.