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Any suggestions for creating ocean waves / ripples as seen in the pictures here:

and video here:

I was thinking of setting a background repeating tile. Then making some kind of noise tile which would mostly transparent and moving this in sections across the background tile.

Any improvements or further suggestions on this?


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Those really just look like... very big particles, or something. – thedaian Dec 9 '11 at 17:22
Oh. That may have thrown me. I assumed they had used something like this -… - overlayed and transparency and moved. – Chris Evans Dec 9 '11 at 17:41
I tend to think that this is a triple layers animation. First and second layers with waves images merged together and a third layer (a kind of heightmap with waves shapes or random multiple shapes) used to modify the alpha of the second layer... this ways there is waves "moving" and "disappearing". – Valkea Dec 9 '11 at 18:47
@thedaian The video does look like particles to me too... I can see repeating patterns but they are not tiled. – Aleks Dec 9 '11 at 19:05
I see the tags "2D" and "Art" I assume you don't want shaders? – Aleks Dec 9 '11 at 19:07
up vote 0 down vote accepted

A different approach to your idea...

Make a large tile that will be the static portion of the water and cut the highlights out of it by making them transparent. Then put a brighter texture with higher frequency underneath the static ocean and scroll it slowly. To not make it very repetative you can also try to scroll with some Lissajous curve.

You can optimize the performance if the cutouts can be fully transparent. Then you can draw the top layer first with depth write and then the back layer with depth test.

I'm thinking of other ideas...

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