Asset Screen #1: Where's the icon?

Asset Screen #1: Where's the icon?

I've recently started rebuilding the asset screen for Rank: Warmaster. This screen will allow you to control your personnel, your AIs, your installations, and your ships; your assets, in other words. It'll be a busy screen!

But everything starts somewhere, and here I decided to bring in some new icons while I thought about how to approach the rest of the task. Only, the icon didn't cooperate; it should have been colored bright white like the text, but instead it was gray and washed out, as you can might be able to see above. Here's a closeup:

Asset Screen #1: Where's the icon?

Still, very difficult to see!

All troubleshooting boils down to somehow removing possible options until we're left with a small enough pool of possible answers that we can reasonable test them. After talking to Arthur, it seemed there were two major ways something like this could happen: either something could be wrong with the icon, or something could be wrong with the lighting. (Remember that in 3d modeling, we get to define light sources and where those light sources are pointing.) The question that we boiled this problem down to was this: "Is this image still washed out and gray in other contexts?"

As it turns out, the image displayed correctly in our screen building software. It also displayed correctly when used as a backdrop instead of an icon. In addition, when we turned up the ambient light, the image got brighter and more distinct. This meant that the image was almost certainly NOT to blame. The leftover option was the light source.

The light source did indeed turn out to be the problem. When I added a bit of code to make the light shine directly forward, toward the screen, the icon showed up as brightly as we wanted in the first place. Lesson learned: if you can't see something in your game, but it's visible elsewhere, check your lighting. Just remember where you moved it from so the next person to use it doesn't have my problem!

Asset Screen #1: Where's the icon?
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