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New and Noteworthy in OGRE 1.12

This is only a high level overview. For a detailed changes, see the git changelog.

Core changes

Stable Media files

Previously all of our bundled Media files lived in the Samples/Media subdirectory - including the RTShaderLib. However the latter is not a sample, but required to use the RTSS component. Therefore the "core" media files got split out into a separate directory and install it together with the respective component. This allows you to easily reference this files instead of having to copy it into your project.

Consequently we also moved various embedded resources to the filesystem for easier editing.

ACTION REQUIRED you will have to add the Media/ShadowVolume resource location to use the build-in algorithms.

NEON intrinsics on all ARM platforms

We converted our SSE based OptimisedMath using SSE2NEON. While the gains are not as substantial as on x86, you can expect an speedup of about 30% for e.g. CPU skeletal animation.

Automatic Plugin discovery for Windows Debug builds

Ogre now automatically append the _d suffix to plugin library names on windows. Consequently it does not need a plugins_d.cfg any more. Therefore you can now use the same config files for release and debug with the same content.

Separate UV skyboxes removed

Ogre no longer supports cubic_texture .. separateUV textures. Previously it was possible to create a "fake" cubic texture unit which would actually contain 6 individual 2d textures. These could be used to render skyboxes. Only skyboxes that is. For everything else you would need real hardware cubic textures. Ogre will ignore the separateUV part now, and create a real cubic texture anyway. The advantage is that ogre renders the skybox with only one draw call.

ACTION REQUIRED If you use custom shaders on such materials, you will have to update them to cope with real cubic textures.

RenderSystem - unified API for fixed-function and shaders

The RenderSystem API was modernized and streamlined for programmable pipeline usage. Consequently most of the legacy fixed function API calls were removed (e.g. _setProjectionMatrix, _setSurfaceParams).

Instead these parameters are now passed through the GpuProgramParameters structure to the fixed function unifying the API between fixed and programmable pipeline.

RenderSystems supporting RSC_FIXED_FUNCTION, now export the respective parameters through getFixedFunctionParams. You can query and modify those and then apply them using applyFixedFunctionParams.

If you bypass the SceneManager and use the RenderSystem directly, e.g. _setProjectionMatrix becomes

    auto params = rs->getFixedFunctionParams(TVC_NONE, FOG_NONE);
    params->setConstant(8, Matrix4()); // the "magic" 8 is defined in getFixedFunctionParams
    rs->applyFixedFunctionParams(params, GPV_GLOBAL);

Improved Profiling

The instrumentation code inside Ogre was improved to be less costy compared to the measured code. At this we also improved the labels to be more readable (camera name vs. "_renderScene") - see the updated Profiling tutorial.

Additionally the Profiler class can now use Remotery as its backend. Again see the tutorial for more details.

Breaking non-API changes

These changes require unit testing on your side as compilation will succeed, but the rendering result may vary compared to 1.11.

  • fog_override semantics changed: previously it would only affect fixed function fog and shader autoparams would still get the global scene fog. Now both autparams and fixed function settings are affected.

  • SubMesh::setMaterialName now immediately queries the MaterialManager instead of merely storing the name. This means that if you do not load any .material files and do an import/ export cycle of a .mesh, the material names will be lost. This is a common use case for offline processing of mesh files. Register a MeshSerializerListener to create dummy materials in this case.

  • Ogre::any_cast now throws a std::bad_cast exception instead of a Ogre::InvalidParametersException for compatibility with std::any_cast. Both derive from std::exception, in case you want to preserve legacy compatibility.

  • The OGRE_BUILD_* defines moved to a separate OgreComponents.h header. As those were typically checked with #ifdef, these check will silently fail. Migrate to the Ogre.h header instead of including headers form OgreMain directly.

  • compute shaders are no longer automatically dispatched when the according material is used during rendering. You now have to explicitly reference the respective material in a compute compisitor pass.

Samples

As a side-effect of the stable media files effort, the Sample media files were refactored as well. Now all GL rendersystems share a common GLSL shader codebase - likewise the D3D rendersystems and the Cg plugin use the same Cg shaders (which is just HLSL9 really).

Additionally we took advantage of the RTSS improvements and replaced any custom depth shadow code by the unified RTSS solution.

Bites

The ApplicationContext class was split into ApplicationContextBase and ApplicationContextSDL. This allows additional implementations (like Qt) and eases consumption in projects that do not use SDL.

Real Time Shader System 3.0

The RTSS API was overhauled and is now more flexible and easy to use. You can now directly acquire shaders for an arbitrary Pass using TargetRenderState - without having to go through any Viewport Scheme juggling. This means that TargetRenderState can now replace any ad-hoc shader generator that you might have in place to leverage the Ogre maintained RTSS shader snippets.

The RTSS now defaults to Per-Pixel lighting, consequently making it the default for GL3+/ GLES2 and D3D11.

Depth Shadowmap Support

The PSSM3 shadow stage now supports hardware PCF and automatically uses it if your shadow textures are compatible (i.e. of type PF_DEPTH).

Furthermore you can now use it generally for depth based textures by not calling setSplitPoints - it will use only the first depth shadow texture then.

Merged Lighting calculations

The Fixed Function, Per-Pixel and Normal map sub-render states now all share the same shader code.

ACTION REQUIRED you must update your RTShaderLib for the 1.12 shaders.

Terrain

To allow usage PF_DEPTH shadow textures, the "linear" depth code was dropped from the SM2Profile.
Where previously you were expected to write an interpolated value of (gl_Position.z - depthRange.x) * depthRange.w in the fragment shader, it is now enough to just write gl_FragCoord.z.
This enables early-z optimizations by the hardware and generally eases the workflow. Refer to the Terrain Sample for the updated depth shadow scene setup.

Furthermore it is now possible to load legacy 1.7 style Terrains (aka "terrain.cfg") using TerrainGroup::loadLegacyTerrain.

ACTION REQUIRED you have to add the Media/Terrain resource location to use the SM2Profile Shader Generator.

D3D9 RenderSystem

Direct3D9 feature level 9.1 is now required.

GL/ GLES2/ GL3+

#include directives in GLSL shaders are now resolved by OGRE. The lookup is performed by filename using the Resource System. (based on the existing code of the Cg plugin)

Monolithic shaders are used instead of separable shader objects (SSO) by default again due to better performance and better driver support.

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