Adding Reflection Probes within our Sci Fi Scene

The finishing touches on the URP version of the project!

The final main touch we can apply to our scene using the Universal Rendering Pipeline is Reflection Probes.

Reflection Probes act similarly to a camera, capturing a 360 degree image around them. This image can be stored as a Cubemap, allowing other objects in the scene to take directional snippets and blend them into the mesh renderer.

Much like our volumes, we can define area and size of our reflection probes, and within the Universal Rendering Pipeline we can actually blend areas and give different weights through the Importance parameter. This can be important to experiment with and get right, as materials can only receive information from two different reflection probes at any given moment.

Reflection probes can be used intensely for effect, or we can simply use them just to add a slight bit of sparkle to our materials. In my sci fi scene, my main intention was to have the bright green glow of the center piece, spill out into the rest of the room through reflective elements.

Before and after a central reflection probe

Paired with the fog particle system from GamedevHQ’s Filebase plugin, the reflection probe really brings the scene together nicely. Note the metallic floor is now lit ever so slightly, which allows for a better outline on some of the ground based props such as the chairs.

Overall, using the power of Unity’s Universal Rendering Pipeline, we can easily turn a relatively simple scene, into a much more lively atmosphere through its many different features. Next week, we’re going to import this same scene into the High Definition Rendering Pipeline and see how much further we can take it still!

Starting scene vs the finished URP product

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