Conference 5–9 August 2012
Exhibition 7–9 August 2012
Los Angeles Convention Center

Efficient Real-Time Shadows

Los Angeles Convention Center, Room 403AB

This course is a resource for applying efficient, real-time shadow algorithms. It builds on a solid foundation (previous courses at SIGGRAPH Asia 2009 and Eurographics 2010, including comprehensive course notes) and the 2011 book Real-Time Shadows (AK Peters) written by four of the presenters. The book is a compendium of many topics in the realm of shadow computation.

The course provides an overview of various techniques but moves beyond the basics to practical solutions and game-relevant techniques summarized by a presenter from the production industry. Topics include: the theory behind shadow computation, when physical accuracy can be replaced with plausible shadows, implementation details, and practical issues such as budget considerations and performance trade-offs. Case studies illustrate the techniques behind major game titles and upcoming engines.




Some understanding of geometry and linear algebra. Some working knowledge of GPU programming. The first part of the course is accessible for beginners. Advanced topics are introduced as the course progresses.

Intended Audience

Attendees in many different fields, ranging from the game industry to the movie industry, and the visualization community.


Elmar Eisemann
Télécom ParisTech

Ulf Assarsson
Chalmers University

Michael Schwarz
Cornell University

Michal Valient
Guerrilla Games and Sony Computer Entertainment

Michael Wimmer
Technische Universität Wien