I am making an engine with 2D volumetric transparent objects and need advice how to store transparency data. There are 3 requirements:
- The transparency textures need to be easily editable with common tools (e.g paint.NET, so .png preferred)
- Since a pixel value will determine the light transmittance 8 bits are not enough - in this case lights could travel maximum 256 pixels in non fully transparent textures.
- It should be clear what each pixel means when looking at the texture.
I've tried using the HEX values from RGB pixels. For example heres a strip with HEX values from 0 to 0xFFFFFF:
While this gives enough values (256*256*256), looking at the image its not clear what each pixel means (=if I'd pick a random pixel from this image you could not tell approximately the alpha value).
Does anyone know a good method how to represent >256 values in an RGB texture, where its clear what each pixel means?