VisualShaderNodeCurveXYZTexture in Godot – Complete Guide

Welcome to our comprehensive guide on the VisualShaderNodeCurveXYZTexture class in Godot 4! This delightful node is a gateway to creating dynamic, visually stunning effects in your games, all within the power-packed visual shader graph of Godot. As we delve into the intricacies of this class, we invite you to explore its capabilities and discover how it can enhance your game development journey. Whether you’re a beginner dipping your toes in the magical waters of game design, or an experienced coder looking to broaden your skill set, this tutorial is crafted to meet you where you are and propel you forward.

What is VisualShaderNodeCurveXYZTexture?

VisualShaderNodeCurveXYZTexture is a specialized node within the powerful visual shader graph of Godot Engine. Part of Godot’s shader programming environment, this node allows developers to perform custom texture lookups using a CurveXYZTexture. It’s a powerful tool that provides a high degree of control over the texturing process, enabling you to manipulate RGB values through the use of curves.

What is it for?

Primarily, the VisualShaderNodeCurveXYZTexture node enables you to edit and apply complex texture curves directly in your shader scripts. This can be used to creatively alter the visual aesthetics of game objects, such as:

– Adjusting the color intensity or gradients on a character’s outfit.
– Modifying the lighting effects on a landscape to simulate different times of day.
– Adding more depth to particle effects like smoke or fire.

Why Should I Learn It?

Learning how to utilize the VisualShaderNodeCurveXYZTexture opens up numerous possibilities for you to elevate your game’s visuals. The built-in editor for texture’s curves provides an intuitive way to see real-time changes and fine-tune your effects:

– Achieve more lifelike or stylistic visuals without the need for complex code.
– Gain an understanding of curve-based texture manipulation, a valuable skill in shader programming.
– Foster creativity in your game design by experimenting with different visual effects.

Stay tuned as we dive into coding examples and hands-on experiences that will illuminate the power of the VisualShaderNodeCurveXYZTexture. Let’s unleash your imagination and bring your game visions to life!

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Creating a Basic VisualShaderNodeCurveXYZTexture

To get started with the VisualShaderNodeCurveXYZTexture, first, you’ll need to create a VisualShader in your project and add a Texture Uniform:

var shader =
var texture_uniform =

# Set a name for the uniform for later reference
texture_uniform.uniform_name = "MyTexture"

# Add the uniform to the visual shader
shader.add_node(VisualShader.TYPE_FRAGMENT, texture_uniform, Vector2(0, 0))

Next, create the curve texture node and link it with the texture uniform:

var curve_texture_node =

# Add the CurveTexture node to the visual shader
shader.add_node(VisualShader.TYPE_FRAGMENT, curve_texture_node, Vector2(200, 0))

# Link the texture uniform to the curve texture node

Setting Up Curves for Color Adjustments

Once you have the basic link established, it’s time to define the curves that will manipulate your RGB values. To do this, you’ll need to add three VisualShaderNodeCurve nodes, one for each color channel:

# Create curve nodes for RGB channels
var curve_r =
var curve_g =
var curve_b =

# Add them to the visual shader
shader.add_node(VisualShader.TYPE_FRAGMENT, curve_r, Vector2(400, -100))
shader.add_node(VisualShader.TYPE_FRAGMENT, curve_g, Vector2(400, 0))
shader.add_node(VisualShader.TYPE_FRAGMENT, curve_b, Vector2(400, 100))

With the nodes added, connect each one to its respective color channel on the curve texture node:

# Link the curve nodes to the curve texture node
shader.node_connect(curve_r.get_output_port_by_name("value"), curve_texture_node, 0)
shader.node_connect(curve_g.get_output_port_by_name("value"), curve_texture_node, 1)
shader.node_connect(curve_b.get_output_port_by_name("value"), curve_texture_node, 2)

Passing the Output to a ShaderMaterial

Now that the RGB curves are linked, the transformed color information must be passed to a ShaderMaterial. First, create an output node and make the final link with the curve texture node:

var output_node =

# Add the output node to the visual shader
shader.add_node(VisualShader.TYPE_FRAGMENT, output_node, Vector2(600, 0))

# Link the curve texture node to the output node, RGB to RGB
shader.node_connect(curve_texture_node.get_output_port_by_name("rgb"), output_node, output_node.get_input_port_by_name("rgb"))

Finally, create a ShaderMaterial and assign the earlier created VisualShader to it:

var material =
material.shader = shader

# Now you can assign the ShaderMaterial to any MeshInstance in your scene
my_mesh_instance.material_override = material

Adjusting Texture Curves Within the Editor

Godot provides a user-friendly curve editor within the Visual Shader editor. Double-click on any of the VisualShaderNodeCurve nodes to open the curve editor and adjust the curve for each RGB channel to shape the texture’s final look:

– Drag the points on the curve to adjust the value mapping for that point.
– Right-click to add new points or delete existing ones.

Experiment with the shape of each curve to affect the color output of your texture. By adjusting the slope and position of these curves, you can control the intensity and transition of colors across your textures.

Stay tuned for the next portion in our tutorial where we’ll explore more advanced uses of the VisualShaderNodeCurveXYZTexture node, integrating it with different types of shaders and connecting it to other shader nodes for more complex visual effects.In this section, we’re going to enhance our usage of the VisualShaderNodeCurveXYZTexture node by exploring its integration with different shaders and how to utilize it alongside other shader nodes for more intricate effects.

Integrating with a Vertex Shader

One of the powerful aspects of Godot’s shader system is the ability to modify not just the appearance of textures, but also the geometry of your objects. Here’s how we might integrate our curve adjustments into a vertex shader to influence vertex positions:

var vertex_shader_node =
shader.add_node(VisualShader.TYPE_VERTEX, vertex_shader_node, Vector2(200, -200))

# Configure the curves for the vertex shader
var vertex_curve =
shader.add_node(VisualShader.TYPE_VERTEX, vertex_curve, Vector2(400, -200))

# Assuming we've already configured and linked our curve texture node in the fragment function
# We now connect the curve to the vertex shader in a similar manner
shader.node_connect(vertex_curve.get_output_port_by_name("value"), vertex_shader_node, vertex_shader_node.get_input_port_by_name("vertex"))

Adjusting Opacity with Alpha Curves

Transparency can add a lot of depth to visual effects. Adjusting the alpha channel through a curve could be used, for example, to create a fade effect on a texture:

var alpha_curve =
shader.add_node(VisualShader.TYPE_FRAGMENT, alpha_curve, Vector2(400, 200))

# Link the alpha curve to the Alpha channel of the output node
shader.node_connect(alpha_curve.get_output_port_by_name("value"), output_node, output_node.get_input_port_by_name("alpha"))

Manipulating Normals for Better Lighting

Curves can also be used to tweak the way lighting interacts with the surface of an object. This can be done by modifying the normals with our curve texture outputs:

var normal_map_node =
normal_map_node.uniform_name = "MyNormalMap"
shader.add_node(VisualShader.TYPE_FRAGMENT, normal_map_node, Vector2(0, 200))

# Connect the curve-adjusted color to the normal map input
shader.node_connect(curve_texture_node.get_output_port_by_name("rgb"), normal_map_node, normal_map_node.get_input_port_by_name("normalmap"))

Combining with Time for Animated Effects

Animating your textures using curves can add impressive dynamic effects. To achieve this, we’ll use a time node in conjunction with our curves:

var time_node =
shader.add_node(VisualShader.TYPE_FRAGMENT, time_node, Vector2(600, 200))

# Connect the time node to influence the curve directly
# The curve will now control an aspect of the texture that progresses over time
shader.node_connect(time_node.get_output_port_by_name("time"), curve_r, 1)

Utilizing Texture Masking

Sometimes you may wish to apply curve adjustments selectively to certain parts of a texture. This can be done using a mask:

var mask_node =
mask_node.uniform_name = "MyMask"
shader.add_node(VisualShader.TYPE_FRAGMENT, mask_node, Vector2(0, 400))

# Combine texture lookup result with mask
var mix_node =
shader.add_node(VisualShader.TYPE_FRAGMENT, mix_node, Vector2(200, 400))
shader.node_connect(mask_node.get_output_port_by_name("color"), mix_node, mix_node.get_input_port_by_name("blend"))

# Mix original texture with curve modified texture based on mask
shader.node_connect(texture_uniform.get_output_port_by_name("color"), mix_node, mix_node.get_input_port_by_name("a"))
shader.node_connect(curve_texture_node.get_output_port_by_name("rgb"), mix_node, mix_node.get_input_port_by_name("b"))

# Send the result to output
shader.node_connect(mix_node.get_output_port_by_name("rgb"), output_node, output_node.get_input_port_by_name("rgb"))

As you become more familiar with the VisualShaderNodeCurveXYZTexture, you’ll find that its potential is limited only by your creativity. You can craft vibrant, dynamic, and responsive textures that respond to events, environmental factors, and user inputs. Whether for gameplay mechanics, aesthetic design, or immersive environments, mastering this tool is an essential step towards becoming a proficient Godot shader developer.As we continue exploring the power of the VisualShaderNodeCurveXYZTexture, keep in mind that Godot’s shader system operates within a context. This means that the values and results of one shader operation can influence or be influenced by another, as seen in the following examples.

Dynamically Changing Curve Points

In Godot, it’s possible to programmatically manipulate curve points within your shader for dynamic effects. Here’s an example of how to do that:

# Imagine we have an instance of VisualShaderNodeCurve called 'curve_r'
# We want to move the third point on the Red curve

var new_position = Vector2(0.5, 0.8) # X represents the position on the curve, Y represents the value of the curve
curve_r.curve.set_point_position(2, new_position)

Creating a Dissolve Effect

By altering the alpha curve, you can create a dissolve effect, making objects appear to disintegrate or materialize over time:

var dissolve_curve =
shader.add_node(VisualShader.TYPE_FRAGMENT, dissolve_curve, Vector2(400, 300))
shader.node_connect(time_node.get_output_port_by_name("time"), dissolve_curve, 1)

# We need to configure our dissolve curve to be a step function or a similar sharp transition
# Then, we connect it to the alpha of the output

shader.node_connect(dissolve_curve.get_output_port_by_name("value"), output_node, output_node.get_input_port_by_name("alpha"))

Gradient Mapping

Gradient mapping is an effective technique for recoloring a texture. By using a grayscale image and a color ramp, it’s possible to assign specific colors to different grayscale levels:

var gradient =
shader.add_node(VisualShader.TYPE_FRAGMENT, gradient, Vector2(200, -100))

# Assume 'texture_uniform' is our grayscale texture
shader.node_connect(texture_uniform.get_output_port_by_name("rgba"), gradient, gradient.get_input_port_by_name("offset"))

# Now output the gradient-mapped color instead of the original texture color
shader.node_connect(gradient.get_output_port_by_name("rgba"), output_node, output_node.get_input_port_by_name("rgb"))

Texture Distortion

Curves can also be used for texture distortion effects, like simulating water ripples or heat haze:

var distortion_curve =
shader.add_node(VisualShader.TYPE_FRAGMENT, distortion_curve, Vector2(400, 0))

# This time we'll use a noise texture as input for distortion
var noise_tex_uniform =
noise_tex_uniform.uniform_name = "MyNoiseTex"
shader.add_node(VisualShader.TYPE_FRAGMENT, noise_tex_uniform, Vector2(0, -200))

shader.node_connect(noise_tex_uniform.get_output_port_by_name("rgba"), distortion_curve, distortion_curve.get_input_port_by_name("value"))

# Let's assume we already have a UV manipulation node
var uv_map =
shader.add_node(VisualShader.TYPE_FRAGMENT, uv_map, Vector2(0, -200))

# We're going to mix our original UV with the distortion
var mix_uv =
shader.add_node(VisualShader.TYPE_FRAGMENT, mix_uv, Vector2(200, -300))
shader.node_connect(uv_map.get_output_port_by_name("uv"), mix_uv, mix_uv.get_input_port_by_name("a"))
shader.node_connect(distortion_curve.get_output_port_by_name("value"), mix_uv, mix_uv.get_input_port_by_name("b"))

# Now use the distorted UV coordinate to fetch the texture color
shader.node_connect(mix_uv.get_output_port_by_name("uv"), texture_uniform, texture_uniform.get_input_port_by_name("uv"))

Enhancing Normal Maps for Dynamic Lighting

To further enhance the realism of dynamic lighting on textured surfaces, curves can adjust normal map values in real-time:

# First, create a normal map node
var normal_map_uniform =
normal_map_uniform.uniform_name = "MyNormalMap"
shader.add_node(VisualShader.TYPE_FRAGMENT, normal_map_uniform, Vector2(0, 200))

# Connect your existing curve-modified texture to the normal map's UV space
shader.node_connect(curve_texture_node.get_output_port_by_name("rgb"), normal_map_uniform, normal_map_uniform.get_input_port_by_name("uv"))

# Now, connect the normal map to the output
shader.node_connect(normal_map_uniform.get_output_port_by_name("color"), output_node, output_node.get_input_port_by_name("normal"))

Using the VisualShaderNodeCurveXYZTexture with these creative approaches, you can add significant polish and unique characteristics to your game’s visuals. Employing curves in your visual shaders is not just about creating visual interest; it’s also a step towards mastering the manipulative power of shaders in Godot—and the foundation for creating truly interactive and engaging gaming experiences.

Continuing Your Game Development Journey

As you’ve embarked on this exploration of the VisualShaderNodeCurveXYZTexture in Godot 4, remember that this is just the beginning of what’s possible in the realm of game development. To hone your skills and continue learning, we encourage you to dive into our Godot Game Development Mini-Degree. This comprehensive program will guide you further through the intricacies of building cross-platform games with Godot 4, covering everything from 2D and 3D assets to complex gameplay mechanics.

And for those seeking to broaden their horizons across a range of topics within the Godot Engine, our broad collection of Godot courses is the perfect resource. Whether you’re just starting or looking to refine your existing game development skills, our courses are designed to take you from beginner to professional at your own pace. Unlock your potential and craft the games you’ve always dreamed of with Zenva – your learning adventure awaits!


Embarking on the journey of mastering VisualShaderNodeCurveXYZTexture and other Godot 4 features is an exciting step towards transforming your game visions into reality. Armed with the knowledge of these powerful tools, you’re well-prepared to create the immersive, engaging, and stunning visual effects that modern gamers love. The world of game development is vast and filled with endless possibilities, and with Godot 4, you have a robust platform at your fingertips to bring your unique ideas to life.

Don’t stop here; continue to build, create, and share your magnificent worlds and stories. Dive deeper into the rich landscape of Godot development with our Godot Game Development Mini-Degree and become a beacon of innovation in the game development community. Your next great game is just a tutorial away with Zenva, so keep coding, keep learning, and let your passion for game creation shine!


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