We are glad to present Verge3D 2.13 for Blender. With this update we deliver lots of great features, including EEVEE-based shadows, screen-space reflection and refraction, matcaps, App Manager configuration settings, the possibility to add your own application templates, and many other features.
Blender 2.8 users can now enjoy native EEVEE shadows! Yes, you can now setup shadows directly in Blender viewport (in ESM mode) and they will appear in the browser as is. We’ll be tweaking them a bit but they are already stable enough to give it a try with your applications.
Considering high fidelity (and good performance) of the new shadows, we’ve decided to enable shadows by default in Verge3D export settings.
New shadows work with all supported lamp types (Sun, Spot, Point). When using Sun lamps, be sure to switch the number of shadow cascades to 1 (the only supported value).
Our demo applications Industrial Robot, Teapot Heater and some others were ported to Blender 2.8 to receive the benefits of the new shadows.
A puzzle for enabling screen-space reflection or refraction is now available for creating computationally inexpensive yet quite realistic dynamic reflection and refraction effects.
The reflection effect works with Principled BSDF or Glossy BSDF materials of Blender’s EEVEE/Cycles, while the refraction effect works with Refraction BSDF materials.
In addition, a simpler puzzle for screen-space refraction is available. It is easier to set up and also works faster.
Matcaps (“material capture” textures) can now be used with EEVEE/Cycles materials via the Mirror Ball projection option of the Environment Texture node.
By supporting the Contant interpolation mode in the ColorRamp EEVEE/Cycles node, Verge3D now opens the way for creating non-photorealistic rendering effects (toon-shader-like).
Download the source file of the example above for the complete setup which includes leveraging Blender’s Solidify modifier as well.
App Manager Settings and Application Templates
The App Manager now offers a settings page, accessible through the gear icon on the top:
On this page, you can enable external server interface to make the development server accessible remotely through your machine IP address rather than localhost. This might help you debug from a mobile device, or showcase your apps in your company LAN or even via Internet. Also on this page you can change the cache timeout for Verge3D Network.
The settings page also allows you to add your own application templates based on which you can create new applications. In order to add a new template, create a folder in verge3d/manager/template/app and put there any files you’d like to be copied to new applications. If you want your app files to be automatically renamed, just use “template” in their names, e.g. template.html, template.css, template.gltf, etc. See the nearby Standard or Code-Based templates for inspiration.
Once you have a folder with template files, add it to the App Manager by clicking the +Template button and specify the name of the template. As a result, you’ll be able to select your template in the app creation panel:
Each application now have a dedicated page for better convenience while managing large projects. The application page can opened by clicking on the application name in the App Manager (notice that file icons are now displayed in a single row).
The application page contains the list of files and offers a search box for filtering them off. There is also a button for opening the application folder.
When clicked on Blender icons, the corresponding files will be opened in background without leaving the page (same with the main page of the App Manager), thus saving you time.
We also made some cosmetic changes to the UI, such as adding the backward icon.
And the last but not least thing – now the main page of the App Manager opens much faster thanks to optimized directory lookups.
Now, the HTML event puzzle, as well as other event and time puzzles which work asynchronously, can be inserted to other puzzles’ slots.
The puzzle get object direction now produces correct results for empty/dummy objects and for lamps.
A new puzzle called “get objects from” is available. With this universal puzzle you can:
- get the list of objects contained in a group thus making it iterable
- convert the output of the all objects puzzle to a list thus making it iterable
- find objects of a kind (e.g. cameras, lamps, annotations, etc)
- get children of some parent object
Finally, we implemented a new puzzle called get custom props to allow you to retrieve user-defined properties assigned to an object in Blender.
The puzzle outputs a dictionary from which you can easily get the values of individual properties.
Verge3D WordPress plugin now uploads applications asynchronously which speeds up the upload process and also fixed the maximum upload size issue.
We fixed bloom artifacts when lamps are present on the scene.
The App class API reference was updated to include all methods available in this class.
Fixed the issue with Windows Defender Antivirus which wrongfully detected the order.php script of the WordPress plug-in as malicious software.
The Mix Shader EEVEE/Cycles node now correctly works with its Factor > 1.
Hope you like our work! Feel free to tell us what you think about this release in the comments below or on the forums.
Minor update 2.13.1 fixes screen-space reflection not working on mobile and also improves the performance of this effect.