Monday, November 19, 2012

Creating a Colored Unlit Alpha Texture Shader for Unity

Last week I wrote about Creating a Colored Unlit Texture Shader for Unity.  I've used the shader from that post quite a lot on my new game Match'n Flip; however I recently realized it didn't work with alpha textures (textures with transparency).  So I decided to make a short post about creating the same kind of colored shader for a texture with alpha.

Applying a color combine with an alpha texture opens up some interesting possibilities, because you can control the opacity of the texture by modifying the color multiplier's alpha value.  Below is a picture of the default Unity Unlit Transparent shader, and on the right are 2 examples of my modified colored unlit transparent shader.  The opaque section of the object on the top right is semi-transparent because I set the color multiplier's alpha value to 50%(0.5), which the object on the bottom left is full opacity but has a red tint applied.

The shader itself is pretty simple, I modified Unity's Unlit-Alpha shader to support a Color property and handle the color combine operation.  The shader will appear in the shader dropdown menu under NAKAI/Unlit/Transparent Colored.  In case you're wondering, the Unlit-Alpha shader was written using Unity's ShaderLab Shader Syntax, I highly recommend reading up on the operations involved.  As before, you are free to copy and use this shader as you wish, Enjoy!

// Copied from Unlit-Alpha.shader, but adds color combine(tinting)
// Unlit alpha-blended shader.
// - no lighting
// - no lightmap support
// - Added per-material color

// Change this string to move shader to new location
Shader "NAKAI/Unlit/Transparent Colored" {
    Properties {
        // Adds Color field we can modify
        _Color ("Main Color", Color) = (1,1,1,1)
        _MainTex ("Base (RGB)", 2D) = "white" {}
    SubShader {
        Tags {"Queue"="Transparent" "IgnoreProjector"="True" "RenderType"="Transparent"}
        LOD 100
        ZWrite Off
        Blend SrcAlpha OneMinusSrcAlpha 

        Pass {
            Lighting Off
            SetTexture [_MainTex] { 
                // Sets _Color as the 'constant' variable
                // Multiplies color (in constant) with texture
                combine constant * texture


  1. Thanks for sharing! That's very clear and useful

  2. Thanks! That will be useful in my game too!

  3. Nice article. It's very helpful to me. Thank you. Please check my hex to rgba converter.