Arbitrary Images as Terrain

Thursday, July 10th, 2008 | Author:

A little tip on the side…

Via Image Map Shader, you can load any texture fairly easily and use it as displacement to make a terrain out of it.

There is an easier way to do it, however! You can also load images with the Heightfield Load operator. When you add a terrain with Add Terrain > Heightfield (load file), the list allows .ter terrains, as well as .bmp and .tga bitmaps.

Be sure to know that the last selection in the list, “*.*”, shouldn’t be overlooked. If you choose this, you can load any file. Of course it makes little sense to load just any data, like an application. Images however, work perfectly. TG2 recognizes all the formats that it accepts for Image Maps. Some of those are .jpg/.jpeg and .png.

If Heightfield Load is used instead of Image Map, some shaders and a lot of tricky Projection and Displacement settings can be avoided! :)

Category: Beginner | One Comment

World Machine 2 released

Sunday, July 06th, 2008 | Author:

World Machine 2, the successor of the popular terrain tool has been released this friday. If you want to try the new version yourself, you can get the free basic edition on the new website. Unlike in WM1, it includes all of the creative tools, even those that were restricted to the standard edition before. The catch is that the terrains from the basic edition are still limited to 512¬≥ in size and you can’t use them commercially. more…

Category: News | Leave a Comment

Update for the free edition soon

Sunday, July 06th, 2008 | Author:

That last two updates (tech preview 3 and 4) have been available to pre-purchasers only, everybody else had to work with the now nine-month-old second tech preview (v1.9.04.1) that doesn’t have multithreading, transparent water etc.

This wait might be over “soon”!

[...] Having said that, there are some user interface bugs in that have been addressed in recent updates which were available to Deep pre-purchasers. We will bring the free non-commercial edition up to date with these bug fixes soon.


(source: Matt at the Planetside forum)

Category: News | Leave a Comment

Group: Capture Nodes

Tuesday, June 17th, 2008 | Author:

Group: Capture Nodes is a relatively unknown function, but it would come in handy for a lot of users.

Here’s a problem: you have built a complex surface with a lot of nodes, and now you want to move it around a bit in the network, so you have more space for other groups or new nodes. That’s not so easy. If you try to move the group, a lot of nodes just stay where they are. more…

Category: Documentation | Leave a Comment

Translations and Themes

Tuesday, June 17th, 2008 | Author:

The blog has been online for 7 weeks now and is quite popular, judging from the amount of spam filtered out by Akismet. Thanks to everyone who has posted a real comment :)

Right now, we’re translating the last few articles from our archive and by we I mean Mohawk, who kindly offered to help us with the translation. This frees up some time for writing actual articles! For the future, we’re planning a series documenting single shaders and their use.

I’m also thinking about a new theme for the blogs – Avenue. You can take a look at it at my personal blog.

Category: Meta | Leave a Comment

Doubled plants

Friday, May 23rd, 2008 | Author:

In my personal experience it’s often the case that a bush or tree is simply not dense enough. A tree trough which you can easily see is sometimes just inappropriate. To the right is an example.

This How-To shows a simple trick to give single objects a much denser structure.


Category: Advanced, How to.., Ideas | 2 Comments

Making objects usable

Saturday, May 17th, 2008 | Author:

As if it’s not frustrating enough that there aren’t a lot of free objects on the internet, a lot of them aren’t compatible with TG2 either. Often textures don’t load for example. However, this problem can be easily fixed! How it’s done is shown here with the use of the French Maple tree (Montpelier Maple, Acer monspessulanum) from the website of the TU Dresden. more…

Category: Advanced, How to.. | Leave a Comment

Copy and Paste

Friday, May 16th, 2008 | Author:

Don’t feel like retyping all the shader settings, trying to describe them, or make screen shots?

Then you can simply copy and paste. We know from word processing programs: you select a phrase, hit copy and then keep it on the clipboard. Now this text can be inserted anywhere (as long as the data on the clipboard is not replaced by other data).


Category: Tricks | 2 Comments

Flexible Heightfields

Friday, May 16th, 2008 | Author:

If you’ve ever tried to stretch an imported terrain, i.e. a heightfield, over the whole planet like in TG0.9, you’ve probably run into some problems because heightfields don’t follow the curvature of the planet. more…

Category: Advanced, How to.. | 3 Comments

TG2 Alpha released!

Tuesday, April 29th, 2008 | Author:

TG2 alpha has just been released! Pre-purchasers were sent an e-mail including a link to the download page. According to Matt, “All the emails have been sent but they can take a few hours to be processed by mail servers”. Experience shows that some of those mails will not arrive at all. So far there has been no announcement on how users who have chosen not to receive any e-mail will get the update.

The Alpha fixes a long list of bugs and comes with some new features. In particular, transparency and multithreading are finally implemented! The complete changelog has already been announced last week and can be found in the planetside forum.

During the next few weeks, we’ll take a closer look at the release. What is the speed-up of multithreading? Do single-core systems benefit from the new engine too? How do the new features work?

Do you have any questions yourself? Let us know in the comments and we’ll try to answer them in our next article! :)

Category: News | One Comment