Volumetric rings are out of beta testing and are being released to everyone! You can read more about this feature in our previous blog posts here and here. More improvements for rings are planned for the future, but for now I must move on to other high-priority tasks (major bugfixes, other major graphical features, etc.).

Changes of this build (0.990.43.1865) compared to the previous public beta build:

  • Adjusted brightness of filmic tone mapping functions
  • Changed sharpness function for volumetrics (galaxy, nebula, comet tail, aurora)
  • Sharpness of volumetrics and 3D rings is reverse of the global scene sharpness to prevent over-sharpening (ability to switch off this function in the config file or in the debug toolbox)
  • Overhaul of the debug toolbox, controls are split into several tabs
  • Added combined satellite mass info to the Wiki
  • Fixed a bug that made procedural rings too sparse
  • Fixed a crash that sometimes happen after reloading of a planet/system in the planet editor
  • Fixed bug with stopping of terrain textures loading
  • Fixed a bug with generation of a double Wolf-Rayet system, where the secondary star has a luminosity hundreds of times greater than the whole system (for 0.991)
  • This update is being published to the main, beta, and 0.991_beta branches. Note that some planetary systems in the 0.991_beta may be different now, because changes in the planet generator code are not final. This must not affect the main branch, so your saved locations must be intact (except of course for rings around procedural planets).

    Changelog compared to 0.990.42.1830 (last main branch update)

  • Added volumetric 3D planetary rings
  • Updated exoplanet catalog (June 03, 2021)
  • Support for blackbody thermal glow and temperature maps for spaceships (accurate radiator glow appearance)
  • Better sharpening algorithm (AMD FidelityFX Contrast Adaptive Sharpening)
  • Elevation and temperature textures are split into independent arrays (improves terrain LOD capabilities by cost of increased VRAM usage)
  • Additional security checks in terrain texture cache (improves stability)
  • Ability to reload a planet or planetary system in the editor without waiting for completeness of terrain generation
  • Safe (crash-free) change of terrain texture settings (texture compression, detail textures, graphics quality preset) while camera is near planet surface
  • Geographic grid on black holes, neutron stars, and white dwarfs is warped according to gravitational lensing
  • Geographic grid color parameter is added to all skin config files
  • Optimized the Map mode performance near the Solar system and in other galaxies
  • Anti-aliased lines of constellations and coordinate grids (celestial, geographic and the Map mode grid)
  • Sharper orbital path lines
  • Ability to skip building the shader cache by pressing Esc in the loading window (splash screen)
  • Importing locations from clipboard automatically detects format (se:// URL or script)
  • Exceedingly thin atmospheres are not rendered in Solar system browser previews
  • Added reading of physical video memory size from the system registry
  • FXAA smooths alpha channel in screenshots and previews
  • Alpha channel is used in Solar system browser previews again
  • Separately configurable unit for star surface temperature in the interface
  • Opening the map mode while a star is selected will zoom to show its planetary system
  • Added support of DEG MIN SEC format for lat/lon in the Goto command
  • Adjusted brightness of filmic tone mapping functions
  • Changed sharpness function for volumetrics (galaxy, nebula, comet tail, aurora)
  • Sharpness of volumetrics and 3D rings is reverse of the global frame sharpness to prevent over-sharpening (ability to switch off this function in the config file or in the debug toolbox)
  • Overhaul of the debug toolbox, controls are split by several tabs
  • Added combined satellite mass info to the Wiki
  • Fixed spin-orbital resonance display for hyperbolic orbits
  • Fixed bug with debris rings being very rare around gas giants
  • Fixed missing asteroid belts
  • Fixed molten comets bug
  • Fixed non-functional interpolation of variables if the duration is zero or negative
  • Fixed inability to type negative magnitude limit in the camera toolbar
  • Fixed Wiki display of Hill/influence radius for gas giants
  • Fixed bug with celestial grid and constellation line colors not loading from the skin config on startup
  • Fixed incorrect catalog stars clipping in the Map mode
  • Fixed wrong number of stars rendered in the Map mode
  • Fixed keyboard zoom speed being framerate-dependent in the Map mode
  • Fixed multiple errors in printing object names to the log file
  • Fixed incorrect impostor rendering of distant galaxies after loading some saved locations
  • Fixed bug then SE uses less VRAM for terrain textures after change of terrain texture settings than it actually can
  • Fixed big moons orbiting inside rings
  • Fixed anti-aliasing (MSAA) on previews in the Solar system browser, the Wiki, and the Locations browser
  • Fixed bug with modifying a system with a black hole then restoring it in the Planet editor
  • Fixed bug with reading key combinations with “Numpad -” from keys.cfg
  • Fixed artifacts in ocean specular highlight on AMD Radeon (everywhere) and NVidia GeForce (near equator)
  • Fixed black level of Earth’s city lights then texture compression is enabled
  • Fixed bug that made procedural rings too sparse
  • Fixed crash that sometimes happen after reloading of a planet/system in the planet editor
  • Fixed bug with stopping of terrain textures loading
  • Fixed bug in a double Wolf-Rayet system were secondary star has hundreds times larger luminosity than the whole system (for 0.991)
  • Discuss this post on the forum.