Self-Illuminated Vertex-Lit
Reference Manual > Built-in Shader Guide > Self-Illuminated Shader Family > Self-Illuminated Vertex-Lit

Self-Illuminated Vertex-Lit

Self-Illuminated Properties

This shader allows you to define bright and dark parts of the object. The alpha channel of a secondary texture will define areas of the object that "emit" light by themselves, even when no light is shining on it. In the alpha channel, black is zero light, and white is full light emitted by the object. Any scene lights will add illumination on top of the shader's illumination. So even if your object does not emit any light by itself, it will still be lit by lights in your scene.

This shader is similar to a Lightmapped shader, but there are slight differences. In this shader, the illumination map uses the same UV mapping as the main texture whereas the UVs can differ in a Lightmapped shader. Lightmapped shaders can also "emit" colored light, while Self-Illuminated emits monochrome light. This shader is also a bit more compatible with older graphics cards than a Lightmapped shader.

Vertex-Lit Properties

Vertex-Lit is the simplest and least expensive shader. Any lights shining on it are rendered in a single pass, and therefore faster than any pixel-lit shader. Even lights marked as Pixel lights will be rendered as Vertex lights when using this shader. This shader calculates lighting at vertices only, so interpolated "overall lighting" is drawn over the actual pixels of the object's triangles.

Because it is vertex-lit, it won't display any pixel-based rendering effects, such as light cookies, bumpmapping, or shadows. This shader is also much more sensitive to tesselation of the models. If you put a point light very close to a cube using this shader, the light will only be calculated at the corners. Pixel-lit shaders are much more effective at creating a nice round highlight, independent of tesselation. If that's an effect you want, you may consider using a pixel-lit shader or increase tesselation of the objects instead.


Generally, this shader is cheap to render. For more details, please view the Shader Peformance page.