Add a Zone Entity

A Zone entity enables you to set properties in a specific area. These properties include: flying, ghosting, key lighting, skybox, ambient lighting, haze, bloom, and avatar priorities.

Explanation of Properties

The number of properties might seem intimidating at first. However, they all serve their own goals and have reason to exist:

Property

Description

Flying Allowed

Enables or disables flying for people inside the zone. This makes sense for game modes, or if you just don’t want people to break your immersion.

Ghosting Allowed

Enables or disables the ability to pass through entities by disabling the environment collisions. Useful for creating labyrinths, for example.

Filter

Filters are specialized JavaScript functions that prevent unwanted modifications to entities inside the zone. This property takes the URL to such a script. See Protect Your Domain’s Content for more information.

Key Light

This sets a directional light for the entire zone, e.g. this can simulate a sun casting light.

Skybox

This lets you set a so called “Skybox”. This is commonly used to apply a sky texture to the zone.

Ambient Light

This is used to apply light coming from the skybox. This is used if you have light coming from more than just a sun. For example if you have multiple suns.

Haze

Creates fog or mist.

Bloom

This enables a visual effect known as “bloom”. A slight bloom effect could be used to make zones appear bright.

Avatar Priority

This property changes the update priority of avatar movements by allocating more bandwidth reserved by the avatar mixer. It is commonly used on live events to have entertainers’ avatar movements still be smooth, even with a huge crowd also being updated.

Screen-share

Enabling allows people to use screen-share inside the zone.

Key Light

Key lighting is used to illuminate a zone. You can think of the key light as a sun which illuminates a zone from a specific direction. The following properties are available for key lighting:

Property

Description

Key Light Color

Sets the color of the key light. This could be used to simulate the color of a sunset.

Light Intensity

This changes the intensity of the key lighting.

Light Horizontal Angle

Sets the rotation around the zone’s y axis and starts in its -z direction.

Light Vertical Angle

Sets the rotation around the zone’s x axis and starts in its -z direction.

Cast Shadows

This enables shadows, while still respecting the “Cast Shadows” property of other entities.

Shadow Bias

This controls shadow bias and needs to be fine tuned. Too low values can cause so called “shadow acne”, while too high values can cause so called “peter panning”.

Shadow Max Distance

Sets the maximum distance in meters from your view at which shadows will be shown.

Skybox

Skyboxes are used to define the background of a zone. There are two types of skybox images that can be used. The aspect ratio is used to define the type of image. Images with a differing aspect ratio or a resolution higher than 4096 pixels are not displayed.

Types:

  • Cubemaps have an aspect ratio of 4:3 and consist of 6 sides, which are projected onto a cube.

../../_images/cubemap-skybox.png
  • Equirectanglar images have an aspect ratio of 2:1 and are projected onto a sphere.

../../_images/equirectanglar-skybox.jpg

Supported texture formats are PNG, JPG, JPEG, TGA, TIF and TIFF. PNG-48 or PNG-64 are not supported.

Ambient Light

Ambient lighting illuminates the view according to the brightness and color of a texture. Accepted properties are:

Property

Description

Ambient Intensity

This sets the intensity of the illumination.

Ambient Source

This takes the URL of a texture similar to the skybox. You can also use the same URL as the skybox. One scenario where this could be useful would be a space station that is illuminated my multiple suns and reflections from different colored planets.

Haze

Haze creates fog inside a Zone. This can be used to make things look more atmospheric, but is also useful for hiding distant geometry. Properties available for haze:

Property

Description

Range

This sets how far the haze extends in meters. Use this to influence viewing distance and thickness.

Use Altitude

This changes the haze intensity depending on altitude. Higher altitude means more fog.

Base

This is the base of the altitude range.

Ceiling

This is the ceiling of the altitude range. Regardless of the name, the ceiling can be lower than the base to have the effect upside down; lower altitude meaning less fog.

Haze Color

Sets the color of the haze.

Background Blend

This controls how much of the skybox is visible through the haze. Higher values showing more skybox.

Glare

Glare can be used to show an effect for the direction that the key light is coming from. This is mainly useful for making a sun look especially bright.

Glare Color

Sets the color of the glare effect.

Glare Angle

This changes the size of the glare effect.

Bloom

The bloom effect is used to make bright areas and objects glow. For example, this effect could be used to make a streetlight at night appear like it is illuminating light. It has the following properties:

Property

Description

Bloom Intensity

Sets the intensity or brightness of the bloom effect.

Bloom Threshold

This decides how bright something has to be to start glowing. The lower the value, the more areas start glowing.

Bloom Size

Sets the radius of the bloom effect. The higher the value, the larger the glowing effect.

See Also