Chapter 3. Shaders and Materials

Shaders and Materials


Shaders allow for a level of realism in games that is stunning—and getting better all the time. In Figure 3-1 there are some screenshots provided by NVIDIA. As I write this, the latest crop of DirectX 10 cards is out, DirectX 11 is right on the horizon, and the quality of the graphics is amazing. Simply put, a shader is a mini-program that processes graphic effects in real time. For example, the reflections on a surface can move in real time instead of being “baked” or permanently painted onto a surface. Shader effects are very powerful visually, even if viewers are unaware of what they are seeing—the ...

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