Paranormal Toon Shader: Light-Driven Npr For Cycles & Eevee

by cfc in Surfacing

Fully Light-Driven Toon Shader


ParaNormal Toon Shader is a procedural normal parallelization shader, an innovative NPR shading solution that allows a fully light-driven workflow and full compatibility with both Eevee and Cycles, including GPU rendering.

Full support for the real lighting in your scene eliminates manual adjustments to materials, making it a breeze to achieve stunning toon rendering with subtle gradients, detailed shadows, and dramatic lighting.

Make your toon renders stand out like never before with a unique look inspired by digitally colored comic books and anime, while using the standard Blender workflow you already know.

Features Overview

  • Supports light intensity & falloff, light color, indirect lighting, and shadows from any light source.
  • Shader settings including diffuse, specular, metal, emission, and opacity can create nearly any toon material.
  • Includes multiple shader variants plus modular nodes to customize the shaders or build your own.
  • Customize the look with adjustable soft shading and procedural halftones.
  • Uses the standard Blender lighting workflow you already know.
  • Integrates with the Asset Library.
  • Compatible with both Eevee and Cycles, including GPU rendering.


✨ Illuminate Your Creativity with Unparalleled Lighting

Say goodbye to dull, flat lighting! Achieve stunning visuals inspired by your favorite digitally colored comics and anime with lighting features previously unseen in cel shading.

With support for true colored lighting—no more faking it with “virtual lights”—plus light intensity, light falloff, indirect lighting, and shadows from any type of light, ParaNormal brings your scenes to life.

🎨 Creating Materials is a Breeze


Between diffuse, specular, metallic, transparency, and emission properties, you have everything you need to bring any toon material to life.

Getting started is simple: Drag and drop a base material from your Asset Browser into your scene, assign a key light, then tweak the color and other properties to achieve your desired look. Whether you need a matte material like stone or skin, or something shiny like steel or glass, you can configure the shader with just a few clicks.

Try bringing in your own hand-painted textures to achieve truly stunning visuals!

🌈 Customize Your Artistic Vision

ParaNormal is designed to be flexible and versatile. It includes nodes designed to work like simple building blocks that can easily be chained together to achieve a custom look, as well as a library of modular node groups for advanced users. Let your creativity flow and achieve the art style you envision.

🌟 Choose Your Render Engine

Both Eevee and Cycles provide incredible rendering capabilities. Eevee offers blazing-fast rendering and ample flexibility for art direction. Cycles delivers more advanced lighting features, ideal for achieving moody, dramatic lighting with clean shadows. Choose the one that best suits your project’s needs and style.

View Comparison Gallery

🚀 Revolutionary Approach

ParaNormal Toon Shader procedurally parallelizes shaded surface normals relative to the primary light source, providing a dynamic visual style that combines the look of 2D with all the lighting features of 3D. Experience subtle gradients, detailed shadows, and captivating lighting in your creations.

This revolutionary approach introduced by ParaNormal is similar to the manual normal painting techniques that have since been popularized by Cody Gindy and Alan Wyatt's BrushFlow, but in the form of a shader that is fully automatic, does not require any editing of your normal maps, and is optimized for a toon-shaded look.

Say goodbye to the limitations of emissive shaders, Shader to RGB, and OSL. Unlike other toon shaders, ParaNormal doesn’t require setting brightness in materials and works seamlessly with both Eevee and Cycles, including GPU rendering.

💰 Save with Early Access

Innovation is challenging, so ParaNormal is currently in Early Access to gather feedback and refine the experience. New features and updates are in active development to make it even better. The price will increase for new buyers as features are added and improved, but existing owners will receive free updates forever. By getting in now, you not only enjoy a low price but also become an essential part of shaping its future.

🆕 Latest Update

January 20th, v0.5.0 – Soft Shading & Blender 4 Updates

  • NEW: Softstep utility node. Maps a value range to stepped values, with adjustable soft edges between steps.
  • NEW: Soft shading added to all ParaNormal shaders (via new Blend property, powered by Softstep), plus relevant utility nodes (Add Specular Highlights, Direction Mask, Duotone Color, Specular Mask).
  • Support for Blender 4 and numerous other fixes and improvements! (details)

Previous Updates

  • October 27th, v0.4.0 – The Ink Update (details)
  • October 12th, v0.3.0 – Maintenance & a few improvements (details)
  • September 2nd, v0.2.0 – First update released! (details)
  • August 25th, v0.1.0 – Released into Early Access!

📦 What’s in the Box?

  • 8 total shaders: ParaNormal Curve Shader, ParaNormal Flat Shader, ParaNormal Triplanar Shader, and ParaNormal Uber Shader, plus utility & reference shaders including Basic RGB Toon Shader, Separate Worlds Shader, Unlit Shader, and Vector Visualization Shader.
  • 7 materials: Base Matte, Base Semi-Gloss, Base Gloss, Base Metal, Base Glass, ParaNOIRmal, and Line Art (Inverted Hull).
  • 34 modular shader node groups for customization or building your own shader variants.
  • 22 reference scenes demonstrating various features.
  • 1 complete, in-depth User Guide.
  • Free updates forever.

ParaNormal Toon Shader is still under active development, so things are changing fast and additional content may be added soon.

Note: Meshes (and any other assets not listed above) shown in promotional images are intended for example purposes only, and are not included. Assets from promotional images are used here either with the permission of the artists, or in compliance with the Creative Commons Attribution license. Soft shading example features "Girl," by Leonth (CC BY). Line art in promotional images uses either the Line Art modifier or inverted hull technique.

Choose a product version:

Sales 100+
Customer Ratings 3
Average Rating
Published 11 months ago
Blender Version 4.0
Render Engine Used Cycles, Eevee, Freestyle
License Royalty Free
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