while i agree that the artistic direction of The Last Night is outstanding, it’s not super relevant to the topic. They aren’t doing anything that’s new as far as rendering tech and vfx goes.
What i find interesting about Noita is that they are doing something new. At first I thought it was some trickery with a pixelizer shader, but that would be way too simple. I have a sneaky suspicion they’re mapping particles to textures and then “activating” their simulation when they collide with anything. Or at least something along those lines. It’s not obvious what’s going on.
At a very high level, I can think of several ways that they may have pulled this off, but I keep getting blocked (in my mind). It would be cool get a basic-ish breakdown of their rendering and particle pipeline.
Maybe it’s a point sim system? I just feel like that would be super expensive to render, but maybe not when it’s one of the only things you’re rendering.