Materials can be annoying

I’m annoyed that when I want to change the color of an object, it actually changes the original material as well!  This isn’t parallel to how objects and prefabs work, where if you change an object away from its prefab, the program warns you, and then you can be like yes or no.  And once you’ve changed it, you can hit “apply” and change your prefab too, if you want!  Whereas materials just automatically changes your original material, and thus any other object that that material is a component of.  Grr.  (I’ve gotten better at remembering to duplicate materials, renaming, then making the renamed duplicate the component of the object whose material I want to change.)

Other fun thing I’ve been figuring out is what the heck “emission” means on materials, cuz it seems awfully important in getting my colors to look how I want them to.  #todo google lots about emission and actually understand it. (I’ve got it working for my purposes so I’m backburnering it.)

Relatedly, this morning I figured out that the reason one of my objects was a drastically different color than the other objects, despite having the same material (same emission, etc.), was because of the directional light’s direction.  Changed the rotation on the light and voila – they’re the same color (note that the position of the light doesn’t matter – it’s the rotation that changes how the light looks on the screen).  Took me like a week to figure out, which was frustrating, but makes sense given how new I am.  I’d watched this tutorial while falling asleep the other night (https://unity3d.com/learn/tutorials/projects/space-shooter/camera-and-lighting?playlist=17147), so that had helpfully primed me to even consider that my lighting could be doing things.  If you’re a beginner like me, I highly recommend watching the unity official tutorials (and others if you like them).  Even if those tutorials don’t look relevant, there’s probably something in there that’ll help you solve problems down the line.  Plus, it changes the pace nicely – sometimes I’m burned out on actively game-making, but it’s easy and even pleasant to watch someone else make a thing.

 

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