There are several factors that lead us to create this system. An important one was the limitation of our 3d knowledge, the artist knew very well how to work 2d assets so we decided to create a system were we used these 2d assets to simulate 3d objects. The trick was to stack layers of sprites one on top of the other and to use a camera set to perspective (not isometric)
Here we can see our SMS H ingame:
Now lets see the unit within Unity:
With this system we can softly imitate 3d. It hides itself relatively good as long as you don't turn the object too much to its sides. Of course, it has a lot of limitations, though each layer weights no more than 50k each (layers are no bigger than 521 pixels wide or high), and we render them through the Unity sprite system. Units have from 5 to 15 layers and we have them duplicate to create a shadow under water, but even so, it is very light.
Here you can see the process of creating the SMS H unit based on the real dreadnaught SMS Helgoland used in WW1 by the German Imperial Army: En.wikipedia.org
And here is how all the layers look in the explorer:
We are still waiting to be greenlit so if you liked this and enjoyed the BETA please leave us an upvote here: U-Boats Steam Greenlight