MatCap (Material Capture) shader uses an image of a sphere as a view-space environment map. It’s very cheap and looks great when the camera doesn’t rotate. It is widely used in 3D sculpting software (like Zbrush) to preview meshes.
Phong shading model is one of the most classic realistic shading models. It captures the basic features of a lit object using a very concise and straightforward theory. It matches people’s observation in daily life, and also easy to describe using math. Therefore, Phong shading model is always used as the base for other artistic shading effects to be built on.
When learning and practicing shader programming for Unity, I found the Cg Wiki website extremely benevolent on getting a well-rounded understanding of how to shade an object step by step. Apart from the magic configuration parts(Shader Properties/Passes/Tags etc.) of a typical Unity shader, the main function-related part of the shader only lies between CGPROGRAM and ENDCG. According to my practice, I believe Cg Wiki and Unity Shader Reference can cover almost all the basic tricks of Unity shader programming. ;)
My first water shader exploration in unity started with trying to make the water surface waving. This required mesh manipulation through shader or scripts. By playing around it, I got to know more about what other effects I can try, and above is a little side-achievement – a nice low poly water effect.
First try of making a water effect in Unity.
Welcome to my technical blog. My name is Victor Li and I am a Technical Artist and CG Engineer based in Vancouver.