Table of Contents


VL.Stride offers two workflows for rendering:

  • High-level: Work with models, lights, materials, textures (Entity-Component-System)
  • Low-level: Work with draw calls, pipeline states, and GPU resources directly

If you worked with a game engine before, then you've used the high-level approach. If you're coming from vvvv beta and you worked with DX9/DX11, then you've been using the low-level approach.

Both workflows can be combined without any drawbacks, and both can render into a texture or an output window. You can also write shaders for both.

High-level (scene graph)

Commonly known as entity-component-system (ECS). The scene graph consists of a tree of scenes that have entities.

Scene graph data structure

Each entity has a list of components that define the behavior and functionality of the entity. An entity can also have a list of child entities.

Entity data structure

Every entity has a TransformComponent. Child entities will multiply their transformation with the parent transformation.

To build the scene graph you can use the Group or Group (Spectral) nodes in the category [Stride]. A group node is technically just an entity that sets the input entities as its child entities.

Root nodes

SceneWindow and SceneTexture both set up the scene system. Connect a RootScene to either of them and start building the scene graph from there.

See the help patches: Overview Scene Graph Basics, Overview Scene Graph Advanced, and Work with Children.


The SceneWindow node comes with a built-in default camera that can be used with the mouse to look around in the scene. The default camera can be overwritten by connecting a camera to the Camera input pin.

To build your own camera, you can use the Entity node and connect a CameraComponent to it, or use the Camera node that combines these two. The help browser has a section for cameras with several help patches.


See Models and Meshes.


A light component can be attached to any entity and it will use the transformation of the entity as the light transformation. The help browser has a dedicated section for lights with many help patches.

See also: Stride Lights and Shadows doc

Post Effects

The Stride render pipeline has a set of post-processing effects that can be applied to the rendered 3d scene. Such as ambient occlusion, bloom, and other screen space or image base effects.

The help browser has a PostFX section with many help patches.

See also: Stride Post Effects doc

Low-level (custom rendering)

This workflow allows you to manage your own draw calls with the graphics API. It takes more effort to use because you need to know about shaders, buffers, pipeline states, and other graphics API features.

The main data type is IRenderer. This interface can be implemented to take part in the rendering by connecting it to a render sink. The MeshRenderer or QuadRenderer, for example, are implementations of this interface.

You can order draw calls with the Group and Group (Spectral) nodes in the category [Stride.Rendering]. These group nodes are implementations of IRenderer that pass the draw call to the renderers connected to the input.

Renderer sinks

There are several sinks to which you can connect an IRenderer. Depending on the use case and the moment in which you want to render.


To participate in the scene rendering, this node can be placed in the scene graph and will pass on the draw call of the SceneWindow or SceneTexture to the connected IRenderer. It also has a setting to specify the render stage of the scene:

  • BeforeScene: non-graphical, useful to prepare buffers or textures for the scene
  • Opaque: the normal 3d render stage
  • Transparent: the transparent stage, after Opaque
  • AfterScene: after the scene, this can be used to draw into the final render target
  • ShadowCaster*: these stages can be used to render into the shadow maps


Render something into a texture with a specified size and format. Useful for rendering helper textures, such as masks, text, or other basic graphics that will be used in the scene.


Render something into a window directly, without the high-level scene setup. Useful to display a fullscreen texture or to compose the final output of an application.


A very low-level node that schedules a draw call without a sink. It is used, for example, by the TextureFX nodes to render into a texture.

If there is more than one RendererScheduler, then the order in which they are called in the update loop, is the order in which they will be called during the rendering.

For more details, see also: Stride Low-Level API doc and Programming guide for Direct3D 11