irrEdit including a full lightmapper?

So after working a bit on Irrlicht last weekend, I stopped and sat down to write something funny. In the beginning I just wanted to write a nice raycaster. Maybe you've noticed already, I really love raycasters, maybe because it's the first technology which brought me into contact with realtime 3D graphics. I already wrote raycasters in lots of languages - VisualBasic, Java, Delphi, C++, TurboPascal, C.
But then I thought 'how about trying to write a light mapper instead'? So I started a lightmapper. And if you think about it, it's nothing more than an inverted ray caster. :) In short: This was the result after some hours of work:

The results are surprisingly good: The lightmapper has a very high quality (nearly no artifacts) and is astonishly fast. For the scene in the picture, it needs about half a second to calculate everything with shadows enabled.
I wrote other light mappers several times ago, which had different quality and speed, and I didn't like most of them. But this time I took a different approach and I really like the result. The thing I wrote now is just a toy of course and lots of features are missing to make it useful for users (saving lightmaps and meshes, optimizations, compression etc). The question now is: Should I invest some time to finish this up? Would people use this? Or is it a complete waste of time?

26 comments, already:

Finish it at all costs!
This looks good, and if you complete this irrEdit might easily ‘compete’ with comercial programs!
(oh, and first comment)
RustyNail - 31 07 06 - 17:34

Finish it! And I don’t even use irrlicht, but I’d write a loader for your format just to have lightmapper that actually works.
Electron - 31 07 06 - 17:40

Oooh nice! Finish it!! :D
The Anaconda - 31 07 06 - 18:26

I agree, very nice! It would be awesome if you took the time to finish this.
AlexL - 31 07 06 - 19:20

Great Great Great!!!!!!

Please finish it!! _
Blizzard - 31 07 06 - 19:57

Definately, good light mapping tools are extremely hard to find!
SwiftCoder (link) - 31 07 06 - 20:44

I’d love to see it finished, but mainly because I want to see what you’re doing to get a lightmapped scene in half a second.
mg_mchenry - 31 07 06 - 20:49

Yes, it would be very valuable for all Irrilcht-Users.
I following irrlicht since version 0.6, and was very impressed.
So – this would be make Irrlicht even better – and results in better looking Games / Tools.
neotoma - 31 07 06 - 22:03

does it also create its own uv-map? yes, it would nice if you finished it. although, doesn’t it get more and more common nowadays to light everything dynamically anyway?
hugo - 31 07 06 - 22:32

this is a good idea, if it won’t take a really long time, id say go ahead and finish it, and maybe roll it into irredit 0.3 or whatever the next release is :-)
buhatkj - 31 07 06 - 23:13

How much time do you think it will take you to fully implement it?
Yomero - 01 08 06 - 00:39

Lightmapper? OMG HE’S IN MY HEAD!

Seriously, I’ve been looking for even a half-decent lightmapper that sits well with blender. Hopefully this will work! (X Export FTW)
agrif - 01 08 06 - 01:15

I use giles, which I think is the best lightmapper on god’s green earth, so having an intergrated lightmapper is of little value to me.

Having said that, before I brought giles I was having great difficulty finding a free lightmapper to work with Irrlicht, so having a native one available would greatly benefit people who don’t want to buy or can’t afford a commercial solution.
Ryan Ray - 01 08 06 - 01:54

A basic lightmaper is good! but search more for GI (global illumination) with some open engine!
Lonerunner - 01 08 06 - 07:16

This would beat everything!!!
Martins - 01 08 06 - 08:53

Yes it’s a very good think to have a lightmapper embedded in your visual editor… would be great to have also the radiosity processing to get drammatically more complexity and quality in the final render!!! finally IRRLICHT and all the related tools would be a very impressive alternative platform for the free game developers….So continue the development!!!
almighty - 01 08 06 - 13:35

i was waiting for something like that for ages! finish it, please!!!
Lino - 01 08 06 - 13:44

I’d say go for it only if you intend to also develop a radiosity algorithm for it. That would really make the difference between irrlicht and the rest!
Perhaps you could also have a look at FSRad’s source code: . At the moment I am trying to find a way to feed this beast with a usable file format :)
Loris (link) - 01 08 06 - 15:20

I think you must finish it. It would be useful in Irrlicht, and for all of us!
dK (link) - 01 08 06 - 16:57

toxic – An Open Source Global Illumination Renderer

toxic is a physically correct global illumination renderer aiming to produce photorealistic images and animations.
Lonerunner - 01 08 06 - 19:01

An interesting technique for realtime radiosity:
WhiteNoise - 01 08 06 - 21:16

wow, overwhelming feedback. Ok, so I’m going to finish it after I have some time again and done with work on Irrlicht. :)
niko - 01 08 06 - 22:18

What lighting model is this using? Blinn-Phong? Is this using spherical harmonics or classical radiosity for diffuse surfaces?
Matthew Johnson - 03 08 06 - 17:27


That’s great stuff! Please make this lightmapper, it would be the best feature added ever!
cmoibenlepro - 04 08 06 - 19:10

How about using an ambient occlusion shader technique?
djmips - 05 08 06 - 03:59

Wow! havent caught up on your blog in a while, seems I’ve been missing out on some very cool developments. nice work :)
Gaz - 06 08 06 - 02:07

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