One of the most interesting elements of the graphics of Batman: Arkham Origins is the deformable snow technology that added a layer of realism to the white curtain covering Gotham City.
Warner Bros. Games Montréal Lead Rendering Programmer Colin Barré-Brisebois held a panel at the Game Developers Conference showcasing the tech, and below you can see the slides used for the presentation.
Technical explanations aside, the slides included an interesting perspective for the future: We learn that the same tech could be used for other soft and deformable materials, like sand and mud. In addition there’s a chance that the heightmaps (that determine the deformation) could be saved and reloaded, effectively making tracks permanent.
Just imagine the applications in a future open world game, where we’d be able to actually track enemies that move dynamically through the environment, and maybe having to cover our own tracks in order to avoid being hunted down. Quite interesting, isn’t it?