The effect of the EE's lighting on characters' faces - can it be fixed?

Something that’s been bugging me a lot in the EE, is that the new lighting really messes up the shadows on characters’ faces, especially custom heads. I don’t know, maybe it’s related to something that has been present in NWN all along, but if so, it has been amplified in the EE to such a degree that it’s impossible to ignore anymore.

I love that the EE now allows me to have 255 heads per race and sex accessible during character creation already, and I assembled a nice collection of heads a few years ago, but most of them can look really terrible now depending on the lighting in a module and the angle you look at them, since the shadows are so intense and often odd, that they look like beards, on male and female characters alike. So all the nice heads now only look nice when the character is highlighted and temporarily not affected by environmental shadows.

I doubt Beamdog will still try and do anything to fix it, especially seeing that it mostly concerns backwards compatibility with custom content. And I don’t know a lot about custom content creation myself, which is why I’d like to ask the experts here: Is there anything that could be done on the part of the community in order to fix this glaring issue?

I assume part of that might have to do with the heads themselves, with creators back then neglecting shadow shapes because they were less conspicuous before the EE or something? But fixing all the heads individually would be a tedious and time consuming mammoth project, I guess …

Alternatively, is there a way to generally remove shadows from characters’s faces and make them look like they’re highlighted all the time?

Or disable the new lighting and shadow effects in the EE to make face shadows appear as in 1.69 again?

Of course, none of these solutions sound ideal to me - if they are even possible at all. But what can we do? What do you guys think? Any ideas or opinions?


(I’m aware I probably should have posted this on the EE forums, but I explicitly wanted the insight of CC creators and there is no subforum for CC in the EE section.)

The bearded ladies have always been an NWN thing. EE did not create that problem, it might just have made it more obvious, though personally I think it was already pretty obvious in vanilla NWN.
Also, those are not shadows, it’s caused by smoothing and there’s not a lot smoothing can do with 20 polygon heads :wink:

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Hm, that’s a shame. So we just have to live with all these beautiful head models looking terrible in-game? :worried:

Tbh, I haven’t played 1.69 in quite a while, but I do not remember it being this bad. Like I said, I don’t really know the first thing about CC and I’m not very tech-savvy either, so at the risk of embarrassing myself, what exactly is smoothing? Could it be turned off? If it’s not related to shadows, why do the heads look okay on highlighted characters?

Models are made up of connected triangles. Smoothing is simply a “smoothing” of the edges where one triangle meets another to give the illusion that the surface isn’t made up of individual triangles.

Smoothing isn’t something you can turn off with a game setting, nor would you want to. Smoothing groups are defined in the model, and without them you’d see graphics much worse than what you see now.

That said, you can (unless they changed it) disable the new lighting in the game’s settings - think its under graphics.

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