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Lighting Issues

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I've been having some bizarre lighting issues recently and was hoping somebody would know how to fix them.

Sometimes when I load the map or hit "Lock Game View Settings" in the World Editor, the entire map goes black, with the exception of some sort of light source that illuminates all doodads and units from underneath. I can fix the blackness by moving the camera around to certain areas of the map, but the light source below the map rarely goes away. I've only noticed it disappear when I leave the map running and unattended for awhile.

Both of these problems are occurring in two of three maps that are part of the same campaign file. I never noticed this problem until they were added to the campaign. The campaign and both maps have a lot of imported models, so I assumed there was an issue with one of the models, but I have checked almost all of the models I have imported since I began having this problem. Hiding all units or doodads in the world editor doesn't seem to affect the lighting at all either.

I also just updated my graphics card drivers to the Windows 10 versions (I use a geforce gtx card) and I began to have issues around this time. The problem is isolated to these two maps though so it's not an issue across all of Warcraft III.

I've attached images showing the issues. One of the blackness with the underlighting and one with just the underlighting.

Has anyone had these or any other similar problems before? How might I go about looking for a solution?


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First time hearing this, Wow.

Yeah, I've never before seen this or anything similar.

I remember having this problem a while back in an old map I was making. I could never find the cause of the problem. I'd be interested if anyone could figure it out...

I was using Windows XP at the time, so I doubt its OS related.

Yeah I'm doubtful that's the problem as well because of how isolated an issue it is.

Are you using terrain fog? Set it to linear fog or it will cover the whole map in the editor.
(This is probably not the issue but it could be)

The fog is set to the defaults or close to the defaults, with the colour changed. I just checked and it is on linear.
Level 11
Jun 2, 2013
I also started seeing this problem recently in my map. I ended up having to set my fog to linear and set my Z Start and Z End to 100,000. Then I just control fog in game with triggers, which has worked so far.

Simply "Disabling Fog" didn't work for some reason (at least in my case), and what made it more odd was that in editor Game View settings you couldn't see the black fog, it only happened in game.


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Dr Super Good

Spell Reviewer
Level 64
Jan 18, 2005
This can happen if you have too many light sources in a scene. The game can only apply 8 light sources per vertex patch when rendering. It automatically selects which 8 are used by some algorithm. If you are unlucky (or do something stupid?) it can fail to select the environment ambient light as one of the 8 resulting in there being no base background illumination.

The reason for the limitation on lights is the fixed pipeline render. The game was written before programmable shaders became mainstream and before scalable lighting techniques, such as used by StarCraft II, were possible.

Looking at the image there appears to be some lights somewhere that are affecting the models. These do not seem to have nearby physical manifestations meaning they must be coming from distant models. My guess is you have a couple of buggy custom models placed somewhere on the map which have incorrectly configured lights.

If the map is bigger than the standard largest WC3 map then maybe there is some other issue, however I have never heard of this being the case before.
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