How can I achieve advanced text effects?

I have many use cases for advanced text styles, like what you can achieve with Photoshop or Illustrator. It would be great to be able to render simple 2D effects like strokes, drop-shadows, gradient-overlays, glowing. These are graphic effects, such as color and lighting, so for scope I’m not addressing shape-distortions (yet).

It seems I need to use a TextMesh with some shader magic, and I’m a bit surprised how little this is covered from what I could find. I did manage to find an example of what I mean demonstrated by this guy.

You can see the inspector in his YouTube video in which you can see he’s accomplishing the effect with a shader, but unfortunately there is very little information otherwise.

So really I guess I have two questions.

1.) Are there any shader packages out there already that could do this sort of thing?

2.) If not, how would I go about writing the CG to build this sort of wizardry?

My CG isn’t the strongest, but I do have the Font.shader from Unity’s built-in shaders to start from.

It turns out EZGui can build effects by editing font atlases.