I'm working on a 2D videogame where the world is an image designed in Photoshop and the player walks around it.

One of the nicest ways to improve said world is by using Lighting Effects as described here: https://helpx.adobe.com/photoshop/using/add-lighting-effects1.html

It creates lights and shadows that suit the composition of the world.

However, all of this is rasterized into one single image, so the player is always on top of the lights and shadows.

Is it possible to somehow separate the lighting into a different image so that I can effectively draw the player between the world image and the lighting effects? If not, are there software alternatives to achieve this?

  • There's a small chance it could work depending on what kinda lighting you're talking about. The thing is, you can't save the rendering capabilities of PS into an image. What you can export as an image is just black and white with varying opacities and that likely won't be enough to achieve the effect you're looking for. Realistically you can't get ideal results unless you do the light rendering in the game engine. Not that I know anything about that side of things.
    – Joonas
    Sep 19, 2018 at 11:42

1 Answer 1


A workaround:

If you convert the image layer to smart object and apply the filter to it, a smart filter is generated. You can edit or totally change the image keeping the effect same.

A multilayer image can also be used. Create at first a layer group and turn it to smart object.

See Photohop's quide how to use smart filters.

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