From my question at Unity Answers:

Hello everyone, I'm facing a bit of a problem here: I need a shader which has the ability to colour individual vertices and be lit pixel by pixel. Until recently, I was planning to use just vertex shading, since I couldn't find any info about this. The thing, it looks like this: Bad shading 1 and Bad shading 2. As you can see, it is horrendously bizarre and even glitchy. Here is the shader I'm using right now (ShaderLab syntax):

Shader "Alpha/VertexLit Colored" {
    Properties {
        _Color ("Main Color", Color) = (1,1,1,1)
        _SpecColor ("Spec Color", Color) = (1,1,1,0)
        _Emission ("Emmisive Color", Color) = (0,0,0,0)
        _Shininess ("Shininess", Range (0.01, 1)) = 0.7
        _MainTex ("Base (RGB) Trans (A)", 2D) = "white" {}

    SubShader {
        //ZWrite Off
        Alphatest Greater 0
        Tags {Queue=Transparent}
        Blend SrcAlpha OneMinusSrcAlpha 
        ColorMask RGB
        Pass {
            Material {
                Shininess [_Shininess]
                Specular [_SpecColor]
                Emission [_Emission]    
            ColorMaterial AmbientAndDiffuse
            Lighting On
            SeparateSpecular On
            SetTexture [_MainTex] {
                Combine texture * primary, texture * primary
            SetTexture [_MainTex] {
                constantColor [_Color]
                Combine previous * constant DOUBLE, previous * constant
    Fallback "Alpha/VertexLit", 1

I searched around on the Unity forums, wiki and also on Google, but I found no resources for this. I really need the vertex colours here, it's a crucial element of the graphic style of my game, and is the simplest way to do what I want. Any help is immensely appreciated. Does anyone know if such kind of shader exists?

  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ What is your question? (we can probably guess what you mean, but it's always best if you state your question explicitly somewhere in the text) \$\endgroup\$ Commented Dec 31, 2013 at 20:02
  • \$\begingroup\$ Sorry, I'll edit the question. I'm asking if such a shader exists. \$\endgroup\$
    – Kroltan
    Commented Dec 31, 2013 at 20:13

1 Answer 1


Why not do that with a surface shader? you could have Per Vertex coloring and on a same time keep multi-light shading (Which is "almost" default when using surface shaders)

Surface shaders doc :

According to those docs over here, you should be able to create a basic surface shader with diffuse and lighting. And by tricking the vertex:disp in doing no specific action except getting vertex position and converting it to color you want (using an out struct which could be a bit more evolved).

After doing that and getting back the color you got in vertex:disp inside your albedo infos, you just let surface shaders do their job and take care of the lighting (you can specify it there #pragma surface surfaceFunction lightModel [optionalparams])


I think i'm starting to get what you mean by vertexColor, you mean Weight Shade : giving a vertex a 0-1 value and from this value get the color mix which correspond?

or you just need access to the Color property in your input data for surf :

        struct Input {
            float2 uv_MainTex;
            float4 color : COLOR; //get vertex color (blind shot not sure)

        sampler2D _MainTex;
        sampler2D _NormalMap;
        fixed4 _Color;

        void surf (Input IN, inout SurfaceOutput o) {
            o.Albedo = IN.color.rgb;
            o.Specular = 0.2;
            o.Gloss = 1.0;
            o.Normal = UnpackNormal(tex2D(_NormalMap, IN.uv_MainTex));

As stated in docs :

float4 with COLOR semantic - will contain interpolated per-vertex color

That is definately what you should be looking for

  • \$\begingroup\$ Could you give me an example? I've just started searching about shaders, let alone CGprograms. \$\endgroup\$
    – Kroltan
    Commented Jan 7, 2014 at 23:09
  • \$\begingroup\$ Edited with complementary info \$\endgroup\$ Commented Jan 8, 2014 at 7:03
  • \$\begingroup\$ Thanks for the detailed answer! And by vertex color I mean using the information from Unity's Mesh class (new Mesh().colors) on the vertices. \$\endgroup\$
    – Kroltan
    Commented Jan 8, 2014 at 12:30
  • \$\begingroup\$ ok so i believe you should try adding float4 color : COLOR; to access those infos from Shader as stated in docs (very nice i always wanted to try that) \$\endgroup\$ Commented Jan 8, 2014 at 12:34
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ Almost forgot this question! If any future reader is interested, here is the resulting shader: pastebin.com/9BgQsrfX \$\endgroup\$
    – Kroltan
    Commented Feb 7, 2014 at 16:02

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