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Blizzard Tests Ray Tracing on the Shadowlands Beta

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The latest driver by NVIDIA comes with ray tracing support for Shadowlands Beta.

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Ray tracing is a rendering technique for generating an image by tracing the path of light as pixels in an image plane and simulating the effects of its encounters with virtual objects. The technique is capable of producing a high degree of visual realism, more so than typical scanline rendering methods, but at a greater computational cost. (Source)

A short and probably far-fetched "demonstration" of how Ray Tracing could potentially look in World of Warcraft can be seen in the video below. Keep in mind that ray tracing shading in this video is injected with a third-party tool and the biggest concern when it comes to ray tracing are FPS drops due to increased computational costs, so there is a chance the use of ray tracing will be extremely limited in the game and used for just shadows.

If you don't know what ray tracing is, you should definitely check out the following video by Linus, as pointed out by Redditor iCappy_.

Ray tracing support only comes with RTX graphics cards, and here is Mojang, the developer of Minecraft, with a side-by-side comparison of how Minecraft looks with and without it. 

(Source)

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Neat for RP walking, but the chug is too much for anything other than that.

Edited by Grimij
I apparently can't read

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29 minutes ago, Grimij said:

Neat for RP walking, but the chug is too much for anything other than that.

The video is not how it will look or perform in-game, it's a demo made with a third party tool.

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1 hour ago, jinsu2301 said:

How about we get some hi-poly-count models first? It's 2020 and barrels are still honeycomb-shaped...

Been leveling recently and I've been surprised at how far their gradual replacement of older creature models has swept through the game. Went through Northrend and when an original model pops up next to the Legion ghouls and abominations you really notice.

I'm not surprised they haven't done the same gradual replacement with props. There's no telling how it'd affect the aesthetics of zones. But you're right, some of it is definitely very very old.

Orgimmar particularly gets to me, somehow, despite it being mostly Cata. Just doesn't feel great any more. 

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8 minutes ago, Halock said:

Been leveling recently and I've been surprised at how far their gradual replacement of older creature models has swept through the game. Went through Northrend and when an original model pops up next to the Legion ghouls and abominations you really notice.

I'm not surprised they haven't done the same gradual replacement with props. There's no telling how it'd affect the aesthetics of zones. But you're right, some of it is definitely very very old.

Orgimmar particularly gets to me, somehow, despite it being mostly Cata. Just doesn't feel great any more. 

I don't mind the old stuff as much, but even BFA and Legion models are shokingly low quality:
2n71qb5bswj11.png

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2 hours ago, jinsu2301 said:

I don't mind the old stuff as much, but even BFA and Legion models are shokingly low quality:
2n71qb5bswj11.png

It's not a game meant to be viewed up close like this - like some other works of art, it gets better when you take a step back.

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3 hours ago, jinsu2301 said:

I don't mind the old stuff as much, but even BFA and Legion models are shokingly low quality:

Ah. Yeah, there's some weird stuff. I think something must've gone blatantly wrong with that staff -- for anyone else reading, if you look very closely at the ends of the frayed ropes there's a white outline. That's even more obvious ingame. Really weird. The two recolours don't have that issue and pull off the blurry top better, Though they're still not amazing.

I've always supposed that's their trying to eke as much form out of as little computer load (or speed of creation, IDK) as possible. This probably isn't a great comparison to your screenshot, but I actually noticed something really cool about that just last night. Different game, same sort of aesthetic quality

screen2.thumb.png.008ee53ac0e9490ac95693ab1a667a0c.png

Vastly different quality of effect depending on where your focus is. On the left it's either on his hand or what's hitting the shield in front of it. On the right it's on the shield he's extending, so they get away with something that'd fit in with Vanilla spell effects.

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