Exactly - How to make a light glow

Aight, here's a image from a games that runs on the Unity engine.


Larger version

My question is simple, how do I achieve this type of "glow" effect in the scene? I have seen the same question countless of times but have yet not been able to find a tutorial or text that REALLY explains the process step by step. I don't really know so much.

At the moment, I have done a simular room in max, and textured it. I also have the fluorescent lamp itself as a speparate object, but with no texture. That's it. I can't really move on, and don't wanna start make a big mistake.

..My own idea is that I shall go into 3dsmax again and add some omni lights that makes the wall look like it is "illuminated" by the fluorescent lamp. Then, somehow, I shall render this out as a lightmap. But I am not sure how to do that right now. I seen some good guide about it somewhere I think, anyways..

Then I split up the fluorescent lamp into to "objects", the part1 that doesn't glow (this I also add fitting texture too) and part2 that DOES glow (this I add a simple white texture too). I import both parts into Unity and parent them up so it looks like it is "one" object/model.

And somehow, somewhere, I get my hands on a script that makes the "white" part2 model glow? Or maybe is it some effect? Got pro prefabs.

..How to I make a room appear dark? <-- This maybe is this achieved when I add a lightmap?

I am on the right way?

I really love all answers I will get. <3


To make an object glow with the Glow Effect pixel shader, you need to add that particular shader to the camera you will be viewing from.

How it works:

A pixel shader is post-process, so it makes its pass after all cameras in the scene have rendered the frame. After the frame is rendered, it takes the rendered image and uses that image data along whatever formulas it has to create a desired effect (in our case, bloom/glow).

This shader takes advantage of all the materials in the scene's alpha data.

Set up:

A material will typically have a color property, and the pixel shader will use the alpha channel of this color property to determine whether or not it will glow.

You'll notice that if you set the alpha of the color property of a diffuse material, or any other material that doesn't utilize the alpha channel of the color property for opacity, it won't affect the appearance of the material. This is where you tell a material how much it should glow when that pixel shader does it's pass.

By setting the color property's alpha of the material to 0 (black), it tells the pixel shader to not glow, if set to white, it will be the maximum amount of glow the shader will allow (defined in the image effect's parameters). Anything in between modifies the intensity of the glow.

You can use the alpha view mode of the Editor's Scene View to give yourself a better idea of what will glow, and by how much to really fine tune things.

Hope this helps.


These scenes probably use image post processing effects, which are part of the pro standard assets. This effect isn't available in the free version. If you have those assets, apply the glow effect to the scene. Your lights should probably now glow. If you want your room dark, turn down the ambient light settings in Render Settings.

Use blooms and flares, or use a halo.