Internet Ray Tracing Competition Entries

Mar-Apr 2000 - The City

City on a Rainy Day


The image

Looking out the office window on a rainy day.

How this image was created

With 4.5 weeks spent on vacation in the middle of this round, I had to come up with something and execute it quickly. The idea was simple... I just looked out the window at work one day.

I spent some time fiddling with creating streets and traffic lights and realised I was never going to have time to do any buildings. I unzipped Chris Colefax's city include files (which had been sitting untouched on my HD for months) to see if I could cannibalise any code and within an hour I had fantastic buildings in my scene! I went from there, basically adding custom objects to Chris's includes, tweaking various default city objects, and adding other features.

There is no media in this scene: lights are done with semi-transparent cones and the fog is a simple POV fog statement. There's really nothing tricky here, because I didn't have time to get into really nitty-gritty coding.

The rain is a plane with a mostly transparent stretched bozo pattern, and the water-on-window effect is a pane of glass with a turbulent sine-wave texture and a refractive index.


Development history

Hmmm. I was the one who submitted this topic to the IRTC Topic Suggestion System, and it turns out this is the round I am taking a 3 week vacation away from any computers!

Oh well... at least I have an idea quickly this time. Here is as far as I got before I left on my vacation!

Now it's after my vacation and I only have 5 days left to finish! This is where I am up to. I have some nice streetlights and traffic lights, and the streets are now slick with rain, but the buildings need a lot of work, and there is no traffic. The red thing is an advertising sign. You can't read it at this resolution.


After lamenting that the buildings would probably take too long to do really well, I figured I'd unzip Chris Colefax's City include files that have been sitting on my hard disk for ages unlooked at. After an hour of playing around, the image has improved about 9000%. If only I'd started with this!

This is still using Chris' default streetlights, which I will need to replace with my own. I'll also be modifying his vehicles and might even try customising the buildings a little.


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