We are proud to have released the new major update for NoLimits 2 with lots of new features.
Here is a list of the most important changes
New Deferred Shading Renderer
This new renderer allows much higher framerates when having lots of light sources and is optimized for medium to high end graphics cards. Here are some of the key features of the new engine:
Improved Light Source Rendering
Engine scales much better with high number of light sources
Scales much better with high end graphics cards by reducing driver load (less draw calls)
Even light sources that are very far away will be rendered
Improved computation using linear color space for more realistic visuals
New Graphics Effects
Custom implementation of Screen-space Ambient Occlusion (SSAO) greatly improving visuals
Sun shafts effect
High Dynamic Range lighting with adaptive iris effect (works great together with bloom effect)
New underwater caustics effect
New automatic occlusion detection system (manual occluders are rarely needed anymore)
Improved light shafts with higher quality and performance (allows much cooler light effects, such as lasers)
SMAA anti-aliasing (Copyright (C) 2011 by Jorge Jimenez, Jose I. Echevarria, Tiago Sousa, Belen Masia, Fernando Navarro and Diego Gutierrez.) for best trade-off between performance and quality
New Park Objects
New park lamp set (over 20 new scene objects)
New fence set (over 13 new fence types, each coming with multiple variations)
New bench set (over 15 new scene objects)
New trash can set (5 new scene objects)
High Definition foliage set (10 new scene objects)
Improved Sound Effects
Various coaster styles have received brake sound updates
Moveable magnetic brakes sound added
Gate sound added
[The NL Dev Team]
Small Teaser of upcoming NL 2.5
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Here is a small teaser of the upcoming NL 2.5 showing the new sun shafts effect (a.k.a. God Rays). The expected release date of NL 2.5 is early January which will be the third anniversary of NoLimits 2.
We wish you relaxed holidays and a good start into 2017. [The NL Dev Team]
First screens of new update
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The main design goal of the upcoming update 2.5 was to enhance the engine so that it will have better performance when having lots of light sources. The main reason for poor performance was that the engine used to have a traditional forward renderer. While that used to be a valid solution for fast rendering of most day-light parks (with the sun as the one and only light source), more and more users wanted to be able to equip parks with many lamps and such for night-time environments. Also newer graphics effects like HDR (high dynamic range rendering) and SSAO (screen space ambient occlusion) that are common in modern games were hard to add to the traditional rendering system. Something had to be done to fix all that. The solution was to turn the engine to a full deferred renderer. Basically all modern engines are deferred renderers by now, they scale much better with the number of rendered light sources and allow for a wider range of advanced rendering effects. Let me show you a couple of screenshots showing a few of the new features:
We see that having parks with many light sources is no problem any more. Framerates are not much slower compared to day time. The range of lights is also increased to infinity, so you will see all the lights up to even the farest distance. What else do we see on those screens, we see the new ambient occlusion effect (I created a custom implementation of SSAO, that is both efficient and also pretty), as the name implies, basically everything gets shaded by it. We also see a new bloom effect, and a harder to see new God-ray effect. Last but not least we see some of the new park objects created by Marco. There will be a lot new park objects. We will offer over 20 new park lamp models, around the same number of new fences and benches for all kinds of applications. Most of the new objects can be custom-colored. You will even be able to change the color of the light sources easily. More information coming soon... [The NL Dev Team]
New Update 2.5 coming soon
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We are close to release a new major update. The main new feature is an improved graphics engine. I implemented a true deferred rendering engine that will have much better performance when using lots of light sources. Especially night time or indoor coasters will heavily benefit from the new engine. Also there will be a couple of new graphics effects like screen-space ambient occlusion, bloom and HDR that will further more improve the realism of the graphics. The update will be free for all NL2 users. More info coming soon. [ol]
Merry Christmas with our new update!
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The NL Dev Team wishes you a Merry Christmas. We have a new update (188.8.131.52) for you with 2 new flat rides and some other cool features...
Here is a list of the most important changes:
New Flat Rides
We have improved the already existing Enterprise and Pirate Ship with some highly detailed and scripted models. The new ones are looking much better, with bump maps, reflections and special sound effects. They also have a more realistic ride program. The existing ones will be kept as demo objects, but all park designers are encouraged to use the new versions for their parks from now on. With the addition of the new flat rides created by MGrides, NoLimits 2 now has an impressive collection of highly detailed and realistic flat rides, making it possible to create even better parks and fun fairs. We have updated our Doppel Looping park to make use of the new rides, so you can instantly try them out.
Stereo 3D Mode
We have added an option to enable a stereo mode for 3D TVs. If you have a 3D TV either with active shutter glasses or passive polarization glasses, you should definitely give it a try. The stereo 3D mode can be activated using a command line parameter (see help files for reference). Be sure to also enable fullscreen mode. Use your TV's remote control to enable 3D side-by-side mode manually. Some TVs require the resolution to be at full HD (1920x1080) otherwise they cannot be set into 3D mode.
High DPI (Retina) GUI Mode
The graphical user interface (GUI) was enhanced to be high DPI aware. That means that the user interface can now be properly scaled using the Windows text scaling option or by manual setup. This is very usefull for high resolution monitors or TVs to get sharp and large text rendering.
New Icons and Mouse Cursors
We added special mouse cursors and icons for the edit modes inside the editor. We hope that this will improve the look and feel of the editor.
The update is free for all existing customers. We hope you enjoy the holidays and have fun with the new update.