It’s no mystery that one of my favorite features of the visuals of Star Wars: The Old Republic is the lush representation of the game’s vegetation.
The good news is that it’s about to get even better, thanks to a new shader developed internally at BioWare, that introduces a realistic translucency effect to leaves and grass blades.
In the real world leaves aren’t completely opaque. They are so thin that they turn translucent when you look at them against the sun. This effect is very rarely seen in video games, but the new shader can reproduce its looks, and it’s quite spectacular. It’s actually amazing to see how much difference such a small detail does.
The new shader will be introduced with update 1.5. In the meanwhile you can check out a gallery with before and after pictures on four different planets below.