Dynamic Shaders - 2.0

community technology preview

Author: Meltac (C) 2011-2015
With contributions from Sky4ce, Kingo64, BAC9-FLCL, Daemonjax, LoNer1, Lyoko774, DDraig, OGSE Team, Thunderfreak, Gnomus, and ket

Version 2.0 Main Features

- Reflective dynamic wet surfaces (totally new implemented)
- Indoor light reflections in selected places
- New Sun Shafts aka "God Rays" (totally new implemented) with additional sun effects
- Rainbows with dynamically changing size and intensity depending on sun appearance
- Adaptive Night Vision Scopes, now also switchable by keypress
- Dynamic Depth of Field and Zoom DoF
- Reflective suit visors (from the outside and the inside)
- Reflective lighting optimized (slightly improved lighting model)
- Thermal/Infrared Vision
- Soft Shadows - Improved shadow jitter implementation
- Refractive water drops on visor HUD during rain fall
- Lens Flares on specific light sources (not only sun)


Tested on SoC patch 1.0005 and 1.0006
- might work with other versions will no to little changes (untested). Please check the Release Notes .

Many thanks to everybody who helped developing, testing, and releasing this mod!

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Dynamic Shaders 2.0 CTP

Community Technology Preview

The long awaited version 2.0 of Dynamic Shaders is now available as CTP in the download section. When installing it make sure you've read the following notes.

2.0 CTP 2.0 CTP

Why CTP ?

This is a preview version, which means that the final release has not been finished. In software development we talk of a Community Technology Preview for pre-releases that don't "fit" in the regular "Alpha-Beta-Final" release chain, and serve as a showcase of what main features the upcoming version is about to contain. In terms of DS 2.0, there are still a lot of areas that need refinement, balancing, or even one or the other fix to be applied in order to be considered a "final" release.
In other words: Enjoy the new features - but be prepared to encounter some glitches or bugs ;-)

2.0 CTP 2.0 CTP

What new features does it bring?

The CTP contains almost all features that DS 2.0 has been advertised for, plus two or three things that haven't been announced publicly. A few minor features have been crossed out, and things that have not been mentioned as part of DS 2.0 will not be contained.

Feature List (as on the mod's summary page):
- Reflective dynamic wet surfaces (totally new implemented)
- Indoor light reflections in selected places
- New Sun Shafts aka "God Rays" (totally new implemented) with additional sun effects
- Dynamic rainbows
- Adaptive Night Vision Scopes, now also switchable by keypress
- Dynamic Depth of Field and Zoom DoF
- Reflective suit visors (from the outside and the inside)
- Reflective lighting optimized (slightly improved lighting model)
- Thermal/Infrared Vision
- Soft Shadows - Improved shadow jitter implementation
- NEW: Lens Flares on specific light sources (not only sun)
- NEW: Water Drops on Visor HUD during rain fall

Further improvements:
- Semi-transparent HUD cross-hair of selectable color
- Improved Parallax Mapping
- Added jitter and edge distortion to night vision scopes and NV binoc
- support for all 41 levels of the extended Kostya's STALKER Map Pack
- support for mods with zoom-less weapons (to still have zoom DOF in aim mode)
- support for modified FOV (Field Of View), like with FOV-Switcher tools
- scopes with additional scope zoom
- many small fixes and improvements.

What unfinished things are to expected?

As for a CTP some areas of the mod either haven't been finished, or would be ok but haven't been fine tuned and balanced well yet. The following list contains features with refinement requirement:

  • Wet surfaces create glitches under certain circumstances and are toned down for that reason.
  • Indoor reflections behave like wet other areas, therefore they are not refined yet as well.
  • Sun Shafts are most complete but might need adjustment to your liking.
  • Rainbows move with the skybox when you have a rotating sky.
  • Switching night vision on/off disables the "current task" feature as they take over the Tab key.
  • Depth of Field effect looses intensity when used together with sun shafts.
  • Thermal vision is a fake effect and therefore creates "false" or strange results sometimes.
  • Soft Shadows change the way the entire shadowing behaves so need to be balanced out well.
  • Lens Flares are only configured for Agroprom Underground, and only on certain light sources.
  • Water Drops appear / dry out with the wet surfaces without taking indoor areas into account.
  • Many things that need further fine tuning and sometimes even bug fixing.

Do I need to make any configuration effort to get this working?

This mod is all about configuration - it is not meant to be run "as is". Sure, the release *does* run out-of-the-box, when put onto a vanilla installation (i.e. no other mods installed), but realistically in most cases you'd wan't to adjust one or the other feature to your liking and other mods.

So, it's really worth the effort looking into the various pieces that might be configured:

1. Shaders
The shaders themselves have several settings files - those end with .txt extension in gamedata/r2 folder. There is a general ShaderSettings file (including wet surfaces settings), and decidated files for sun shafts, visors, rainbows, and lens flares.

2. Scripts
Some scripts have configurative elements as well: shader_control, weather_control, visor_control. Most settings can be left as they are, but you'd want to check the console settings in weather_control (only change first list value of respective console setting, leave the second one!).

3. Configs
There are some .ltx files in the config sections, most important those in the shaders subfolder. There you can also add locations for areas in the game that should have a ground always dry, wet, or reflective.

Can it be merged with / into other mods?

Short answer: Yes, it can. Realistic answer: In most cases some basic file merging might be required. This affects mainly a few script and config files, although in some rare cases shader merging might be needed as well.

I can't give a general merging instruction here because the effort to be taken depends very much on the mods that you want to run DS 2.0 along with. However some file comparison / diff tool will certainly do a good job in assisting the merge procedure.

Files that need merging in almost every case (when not run on plain vanilla) are bind_stalker.script and environment.ltx, often also level_weathers.script, ui_main_menu.script, and ui_custom_msgs.xml. There are also some files that you might or might not take over, such as the textures (but some features might not work then as expected), or anything that is duplicate with no differences in your other mods, obviously.

What about the system requirements?

DS 2.0 is a beast, shader-wise. You'll want to make sure you have a well optimized (and not extremely out-dated) rig. The mod is DirectX 9 only (full dynamic lighting / R2 renderer). Check the sample user.ltx provided in the download section to avoid renderer errors on a fresh game installation. Plus, DirectX 11 runtime needs to be installed on your system. But relax - you won't need a fully DX11 compliant graphics adapter to run the mod. Anything not older than a Geforce GTX 260 should do, although in order to get a decent frame rate you'll need something like a GTX 560 Ti or newer. CPU load is reasonably high as well, but a moderate multi-core machine should do. However be sure to have enough memory available and run a patch of the game allowing to address enough of it (in my tests the game used about 1.7 GB on full load).

Ah, almost forgot: An SSD disk or at least decent harddrive might really help speeding up launch times!

Why does it come with a bin folder?

As mentioned above, the mod runs on the DX11 runtime. To enable best hardware support I had to provide two binaries to copy into your bin folder. This way you won't need to replace any native DirectX binaries on your system.

If you got any questions or comments don't hesitate to contact me. I can't always reply instantly, but I will look into any request as soon as I get a chance to.

Important Note: Fix for start-up crash
In case you get an error message on start-up after installing the CTP with this log (or similar):

error is error X3539: ps_1_x is no longer supported; use /Gec in fxc to automatically upgrade to ps_2_0
error X3539: Alternately, fxc's /LD option allows use of the old compiler DLL

Can't compile shader postprocess

To fix this, simply copy this sample user.ltx into your stalker documents folder (something like C:\Users\Public\Documents\STALKER-SHOC).

[Announcement] Patch 1 for DS 1.2 Beta

[Announcement] Patch 1 for DS 1.2 Beta

News 1 comment

A first update for the current Beta release of Dynamic Shaders 1.2 containing a set of hotfixes and improvements will be available soon.

Beta Release 1.2 ready for download !

Beta Release 1.2 ready for download !

News 1 comment

The long awaited next version of Dynamic Shaders has finally come to a state where we can proudly announce the beta release of version 1.2.

Community Technology Preview announcement

Community Technology Preview announcement

News 2 comments

We are preparing a CTP containing a subset of the new features.

Dynamic Shaders 2.0 announcement

Dynamic Shaders 2.0 announcement

News 21 comments

After extensive work including various code rebuilds I've come to the decision to start version 2.0 instead of continuing with 1.2.

RSS feed Downloads
User.ltx for fresh SoC installation with DS 2.0CTP

User.ltx for fresh SoC installation with DS 2.0CTP

Script 0 comments

This sample user settings file will fix a crash of DS2.0CTP on a new installation of the game or with some setups.

Dynamic Shaders 2.0 CTP

Dynamic Shaders 2.0 CTP

Full Version 66 comments

Community Technology Preview (CTP) of the long awaited Dynamic Shaders 2.0 mod. See details for more information...

Dynamic Shaders 1.2 Beta - Patch 2 & ThermalVision

Dynamic Shaders 1.2 Beta - Patch 2 & ThermalVision

Patch 7 comments

Second patch (non-cumulative) for Dynamic Shaders 1.2 Beta containing a set of further improvements, including thermal/infrared vision scopes. Check out...

Dynamic Shaders 1.2 Beta - Patch 1

Dynamic Shaders 1.2 Beta - Patch 1

Patch 14 comments

First small patch for Dynamic Shaders 1.2 Beta containing a set of hotfixes and improvements. Check out the readme.txt before installation.

Dynamic Shaders 1.2 Beta

Dynamic Shaders 1.2 Beta

Full Version 30 comments

Beta release of the next generation of the Dynamic Shaders mod. Please read description before installing and also install Patch 1+2 (separate downloads...

Dynamic Shaders 1.1 Beta Patch 2 (non-cumulative)

Dynamic Shaders 1.1 Beta Patch 2 (non-cumulative)

Patch 2 comments

Second official patch for Dynamic Shaders 1.1 Beta, fixing an issue with iron sights. Not cumulative - please install Patch 1 first. See description for...

Comments  (0 - 10 of 553)
MonarchX
MonarchX

Can you PLEASE create custom files for Autumn Aurora 2.1 non-ENB version? I tried my best to tinker around with files and edit them, but I keep on getting very strange green-ish shades at night on non-green textures and there are shiny squares on gate textures.

To make it work, I used all files from Dynamic Shaders, except for the environment weather file because it crashed the game as soon as it got loaded.

Making it work with Autumn Aurora would be SO awesome! If you want even more challenge - make it work with ENB!

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MonarchX
MonarchX

OK, it seems the developers of Autumn Aurora cannot be bothered with telling people how to properly merge this mod and Autumn Aurora without having issues...

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MonarchX
MonarchX

One more thing! With Autumn Aurora 2.1, which uses MAX Shaders and / or early Dynamic Shaders version, all the shows and effects are drawn as far as I can see. With Dynamic Shaders, there's banding and shadows disappear at a certain distance. The R2_sun_near command has no effect on shadow draw distance. How can I fix it then?

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Meltac Creator
Meltac

Sorry, I don't have time to do any custom merging and/or provide customized files for any other mods.

However I know that there are people who succeeded in merging DS 2.0 CTP with AA2, you might search the web for such merges. Also, you may ask User d4v33edz here on moddb who did quite a couple of merges with DS.

The banding effect depends to my knowledge on many settings / factors where r2_sun_near is only one of them. Apart from shaders and any modified binaries or injector tools you should check *all* your shadow-related config settings. Unfortunately there is not one single set of settings that fits all systems and mods, so there's probably no way around testing / tweaking all values per mod.

Reply Good karma+1 vote
MonarchX
MonarchX

Thank you for a prompt response! I did get it to work with AAS2.1, but the banding is strong and no shadow settings I tried fixed it... They say that consoles command work better than editing user.itx.

I can now see banding with AA2.1 too now, but it is not as obvious as with AA2.1 AA2.1 only shows banding on some surfaces and DS2.0 shows it on all surfaces.

Could you direct me towards people who made DS2.0 work with AA2.1?? Are there dedicated forums or threads for this topic?

FYI, the user.itx file you provided gives me a black screen and requires PC restart... It seems to be trying to load a lower resolution, even though there are no resolution settings in user.itx.

Otherwise this/your mod rocks! One thing I see in AA2.1 is SkyGraphics CFG file with lines for HDR, which do not exist in DS2.0.

Do you recommend using the updated R2 Renderer files from AA2.1 / Complete 2009 mod or the vanilla R2 renderer?

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Meltac Creator
Meltac

As I've said before, try to get in contact with d4v33edz by PM here on moddb. Other than him I don't know anybody in person who merged DS with AA2.

The banding issue is indeed a very nasty thing. Actually I haven't been able to completely get rid of it in certain mods, and I have no idea what would fix it apart from the shadow settings. It seems to me as if there was a difference in rendering / lighting between near and far plane. There might be a bug in some of those shaders which hasn't been spotted / fixed yet.

The user.ltx in the download section is meant as a template for your own adjustment. It's virtually impossible to provide this file in a version that works with each and every system, even the vanilla version crashes with some systems / settings.

I have no dedicated opinion about what renderer is best, but I have the experience that all of them have their pro's and con's, and not all work well together with DS. You'll have to try out which one works best for you.

Reply Good karma+1 vote
MonarchX
MonarchX

Thanks again!

About User.itx - I understand of course. I think its the resolution that gets messed up. Is your User.itx set to use a specific resolution, that below of 1080p?

FYI, I tried DS2.0 with vanilla R2 renderer, an advanced one from Mod Pack 2013 / Complete 2009 (2012), and a further improved one from Autumn Aurora 2.1. It works identically.

Shadow banding remains the most significant problem...

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Meltac Creator
Meltac

Resolution in that user.ltx is 1920x1200. Sure, probably not the best in terms of compatibility. But I got very few complaints about this.

Sorry about the banding issue, couldn't provide any more help at the moment. In case that I'll find a fix I'll publish it as a patch, though.

Reply Good karma+1 vote
Freely
Freely

Gorgeous mod, very impressive stuff, although I'm not entirely sure why I'm getting frame issues. I would assume a 2500k and 270x would be more than enough, and 8GB RAM - But she's never quite stable @60FPS.

Could it be that the mod is still in the works, and more optimization is required?

I'd also like to know if it were even possible for this to work with ZRP, as it constantly crashes and makes no difference if I choose ZRP or this mod to take priority. (Going through a new run after 2 years of not playing) and holding off on the overhaul mods.

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Meltac Creator
Meltac

DS 2.0 is truly a quite demanding mod in terms of computational expense, depending on your system and settings it's absolutely possible to bring even a well powered rig down to its knees. There are some optimizations yet to bet made, though.

However FPS depends much on your shader settings and what effects are currently active. If you're experiencing performance issues try lowering some effect' quality settings.

As for compatibility with other mods, it's all about correct merging. ZRP is approved to work with DS but might require some manual merging. Check the error in your log file to see what's going on.

Reply Good karma+2 votes
Freely
Freely

It's pretty much a given when it comes to pushing Stalker. I'm always blown away by what the modding community can put out, and I can only imagine how frustrating it can be to work with an impressive, but buggy and dated Engine/Code.

I'll tinker with the effects to get a stable 60FPS, and will uninstall everything but ZRP and see what needs to be done as far as compatibility.

It may not even be ZRP that is causing the instant crash at start up, and be something else. Quirky things happen when it comes to having multiple mods coexist.

I can't wait for the finished release of Dynamic Shaders, though. It's truly impressive what can be done with this STALKER series.

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Meltac Creator
Meltac

Thanks. I'd like to know what causes the FPS drop in your case, so if you're willing to let me know about your further investigations and results you can send me a PM anytime.

Honestly I'm not sure whether there ever will be a final version of DS 2.0, but you should check the mod "TK Singularity - Ground Zero" for further improvements and additional effects:

Moddb.com

Reply Good karma+1 vote
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