Ogre 14.2 released

Ogre 14.2.0 was just released. This release contains some significant bug-fixes and feature additions, which we will discuss in more detail below. We recommend all users of the 14.x branch to update.

For a full overview of the changes, see the changelog.

Table of Contents

ImGui based ConfigDialog

The ApplicationContext can now display a ImGui based ConfigDialog, when you call runRenderingSettingsDialog().
The advantage of using ImGui is that we can get rid of platform specific toolkits like Xaw, which is necessary on Linux to be Wayland compatible. For the other platforms, this merely unifies the UI.
Furthermore, if you are already using ImGui, you will be able to integrate the Rendering Settings into your existing UI using the DrawRenderingSettings method.

The platform specific getNativeConfigDialog() based Dialogs will be removed in a future release.

Vertex Cache Optimization in MeshUpgrader

MeshUpgrader now accepts the -optvtxcache flag to improve the vertex cache utilization of the given mesh.

This reorders the index buffer of the mesh such that triangles are rendered in order of proximity. If enabled, the MeshUpgrade will print the change of the “average cache miss ratio (ACMR)” metric. It measures the number of cache misses per triangle and thus ranges from 3.0 (all 3 vertices missed) to about 0.5 for a convenient mesh.

Note that the algorithm for this was present since Ogre 1.6, it was just not exposed anywhere unless you explicitly processed your meshes by hand.

If you want to know more about the topic, see here. The algorithm in ogre has quadratic complexity though, but should provide better results.

Cleaned up samples

To integrate the ImGui based ConfigDialog, the SampleBrowser and the Samples were refactored, and now resemble more idiomatic usage of Ogre, such as input filtering using the InputListenerChain and interaction with ApplicationContext. This refactoring also led to the removal of a significant amount of boilerplate code.

Ecosystem Roundup

blender2ogre

Thanks to the work of “Guillermo Ojea Quintana” blender2ogre now supports manually specified meshes for LOD levels – in addition to auto generating mesh LOD using Blender or Ogre. See the documentation for details.

Additionally, he did some profiling and we could resolve a rather embarrassing bottleneck resulting in a import and export speed improvement of 10x.

ogre-meshviewer

Again thanks to the contributions of “Guillermo Ojea Quintana”, ogre-meshviewer now has nice ImGui based RenderSystem config dialog, wireframe mode, better LOD level inspection and a “Open File” dialog.

Ogre 14 User Survey 2024

Those of you who have been around Ogre for some time might remember that back in 2022, we conducted a survey about our user base. The results of which can be found here.

For the Ogre 14 development cycle we would like to assess to correctly emphasize the development on the most used features.

So for the next four weeks until the 25th of February, you have the chance to participate and help us to get an impression about our user base, how Ogre is used and share some wishes for the future. Simply follow the link and make your way through the 17 questions.

By dedicating 5-10 minutes of your time, you provide immensely valuable feedback in understanding the current situation and needs of the Ogre community. Your support is greatly appreciated.

PS: We would be glad if you could spread the word about the survey via all available channels to all potential Ogre users, because: The more participants, the more accurate are the results of course.

Ogre-Next 2.3.3 Daedalus & 2.2.7 Cerberus released

These are maintenance releases. Little effort should be spent porting to these newer versions.

OgreNext 2.3.2 release is skipped because there was a relatively minor issue discovered after its release and 2.3.3 fixed that.

For a full list of changes see the Github release for 2.3.3 and the Github release for 2.2.7

Source and SDK is in the download page.

Discussion in forum thread.

Pst! We’re deciding on name candidates for the upcoming Ogre-Next 3.0 release. Make sure to chime in!

Ogre 14.1 released

Ogre 14.1.0 was just released. This release contains some significant bug-fixes and feature additions, which we will discuss in more detail below. We recommend all users of the 14.x branch to update.

For a full overview of the changes, see the changelog.

Table of Contents

Rectangular Area Lights

A new spot light type LT_RECTLIGHT has been introduced along with the Light::setSourceSize method, enabling the rendering of rectangular area lights. In order to process this light type in your shader, verify that the spotlight_params.w autoparam is equal to 2. Then, spotlight_params.xyz contains the light width in view space, and light_attenuation.xyz contains the light height. Alternatively, just use the RTSS.

Correct whitespace loading

Historically, Ogre had incorrect glyph placement due to the initial  authors not fully understanding the freetype glyph conventions. 

The majority of these issues were addressed in version 13.0, but one notable  exception remained: the width of the whitespace character. This was  caused by a bug that prevented the width from being correctly read from freetype, so Ogre used the width of the number ‘0’ instead. This issue has now been resolved, as can seen below

However, to achieve  this, you must load the code-point 32. Failure to do so will result in  the ‘?’ placeholder character being displayed following the behaviour of ImGui.

RTSS: support for multiple shadow casting lights

Up until now, the shadow mapping SRS had only supported a single light source with the option of using parallel splits for increased resolution, due to the fact that it initially only supported PSSM.

I have finally came around to refactoring this code such it supports multiple shadow casting lights now.
By default this implements additive shadows, which was the most costly shadowing variant when not using integrated shadows. As we are using integrated shadows here, it is basically free now.
Only when using per-vertex lighting, we fall back to modulative shadows as all lights were already evaluated in the vertex shader.

You can configure the number of lights that should be considers via:

srs->setParameter("light_count", "2")

Ogre 14 released

We just tagged the Ogre 14 release, making it the new current and recommended version. We would advise you to update wherever possible, to benefit from all the fixes and improvements that made their way into the new release.
This release represents almost 2 years of work from various contributors when compared to the previous major 13 release. Compared to the last Ogre minor release (13.6), however we are only talking about 6 months. Here, you will mainly find bug-fixes and the architectural changes that justify the version number bump.

Table of Contents

For source code and pre-compiled SDKs, see the downloads page.

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Ogre 13.6 released

Ogre 13.6.0 was just released. This is the last scheduled release for the 13.x series and contains some significant bug-fixes and feature additions, which we will discuss in more detail below. We recommend all users of Ogre 13.x to update.

Generally speaking, this release brings much better lighting/ shadowing due to several bugfixes that previously degraded results.

For a full overview of the changes, see the changelog.

Table of Contents

RTSS Terrain

Already mentioned in the 13.5 announcement, this has now finally landed. Thanks to the preliminary testing by the rigs-of-rods guys, the remaining bugs have been ironed out. This feature allows to easily enable multiple lights or switch to PBR equations altogether.

RTSS based Terrain with multiple lights

Additionally, the layer normal blending equations have been improved and now multi-layer terrain has improved lighting.

Improved LiSPSM Quality

Here, I finally found the bug that significantly reduced the shadowmap resolution, when using LiSPSM (see above). This bug also affected PSSM, which internally uses LiSPSM.

Additionally, I could add shadow pancaking for directional lights. This is a feature also present in Ogre Next, that improves depth shadow z-resolution and thus reduces shadow acne.

Shadow pancaking is automatically used on RenderSystems that support depth clamping, like GL3+, D3D11 and Vulkan.

Image Codec implemented in Rust

To improve the security of the Ogre codebase, I looked into using the Rust language. The most critical part of Ogre is probably texture loading, as it has to deal with a plethora of different image formats. As astart, I have implemented a new Codec_RsImage.
Image codec are plugins since Ogre 1.11, this means that the Rust part is completely optional and you do not have to update your build environment, if you dont need it.

The new Codec internally uses image-rs to load the various formats, that are all implemented in Rust and thus provide memory safety.
Unfortunately, currently the Rust implementation is slower than the highly optimized C libs that have been around for decades. However, as Firefox is using image-rs internally too, I assume performance will catch-up over time.

UAV support in Ogre Script and compute shaders in D3D11

The texture shows the grid of GPU thread-groups that are generating it

Complementing GL3+, D3D11 now supports compute shaders as well. The respective Sample in the SampleBrowser will show you how to do it.

Additionally, that sample now got considerably simpler too, as you can now specify in the ogre script that you want to use a texture for writing in the compute shader, as

texture_unit {
   texture …
   unordered_access_mip 0
}

This will bind mipmap level 0, at the binding point of the texture_unit order UAV access (D3D11 jargon) or image load/ store (GL jargon).

IBL support added to the RTSS

Now the RTSS can add indirect, image based lighting (IBL) to PBR materials. To enable it via material scripts, you have to specify

rtshader_system {
   lighting_stage metal_roughness
   image_based_lighting texture lightroom_14b_ibl.ktx
}

Note, that it requires the metal_roughness parametrization to work. For best results, generate the cubemaps using cmgen tool of the Filament project.

While at it, the cubemap support was generally improved. Ogre now can correctly load the HDR .ktx files generated by cmgen (GL3+, D3D11 only) and also use the slightly more sane _px, _nx, _py, _ny .. layer suffixes in additon to the _fr, _bk, _lf .. suffixes it traditionally used.