View Full Version : landscape and environment creation

12-27-2003, 08:44 AM
I just downloaded the demo of Vue 4 and it seams straight forward enough. It even allows for export to LW. Is there any other program doing this good of a job with creating environments fast while looking good. One short fall for Vue 4 is the lack of a good water system. You can do lakes, and oceans but i have not seen any ability to create water falls.

The reason I ask is I'm going to be buy a package like this or worldbuilder, and i thought I'd ask you all first
Thanxs !!!!

12-27-2003, 01:59 PM
I just looked at bryce is it any better, please help thanx again.

12-27-2003, 02:10 PM
you can pick up world builder full version of 2.3 from a magazine called digit you'll want to get a back issue around sept/oct 2003 from www.digitmag.co.uk though it's a quirky app it can deliver pretty good scenes with time spant in it.

bryce is pretty cool and simple to use but animated aterfalls are not it's strong point..and rendertimes can be quite long in some scenes....also you should be able to find bryce 3 on some backissues though theprice of bryce 5 is so small i'd be tempted to get bryce 5 new from say www.amazon.com

lighwave is quite capable of creating all manner of scenes animation including waterfalls etc..though bryce would be a good place to start learning 3d landscapes and you can export to lightwave as well...

12-27-2003, 10:10 PM
thanz cresshead, i was thinking of going with bryce because of the price. i will export what ever I do into lightwave.

12-28-2003, 04:42 AM
Originally posted by d1wojo
thanz cresshead, i was thinking of going with bryce because of the price. i will export what ever I do into lightwave.

I'd have a good read of it's export facilities before trying to export entire scenes from bryce to lightwave as they will not work (in Bryce 4) anyway.
You can export the ground plane objects but thats about it. Also you will have to retexture it in Lightwave anyway as the textures are really poor or just don't transfer, its been a while since I used my version of Bryce but from what I can remmber the terrains it does export were VERY poly heavy as well.

You can get better results using subds in Lightwave and just pulling them around. The main job is getting the correct LOOK with your textures. Now if Terregen exported textures with its .LWO export you would really be in business! BTW there is a MASSIVE tutorial on the web about terrains in lightwave at CGtalk or CGnetworks or some other site cannot remmber to be honest but it went on for a about 30 pages of info

any one any idea where it is?

12-28-2003, 04:18 PM
How about worldbuilder is this any better then the rest of them

12-28-2003, 05:11 PM
Originally posted by badllarma
Now if Terregen exported textures with its .LWO export you would really be in business!

I really think such a thing would increase the amount of 3D artists that use Terragen. I suppose it is possible to set the camera right on top looking down and turn off all shadows (or leave them if you want textures with shadows) and render out a square texture. The problem with this is that it will probably stretch the texture on steep slopes. I've never tried it so I don't know.

d1wojo: If you haven't yet, i advise you to try out Terragen before you spend a cent on something else. It's free too (for non commercial work). But it too can't create waterfalls.

12-29-2003, 06:12 AM
if i remember correctly since the last revision you can turn your terragen-camera to orthografic, that should solve the stretching problem.... i think..


01-01-2004, 06:08 PM

Ya, there are proggys like you're all saying that do setup like
you're all saying. My personal fav. is World Construction Set.

But unless you're doing lots of them it's really not that hard
to set it up all in LW with nothing other than PhotoShop.

Here, check this out:

Introduction to Landscapes and Lightwave (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/introduction.html)

Chapter One: Heightmap Creation

1.0 - Section Introduction (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c01/c01.html)
1.1 - Planning the Environment (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c01/c01b.html)
1.2 - Photoshop Heightmap Creation (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c01/c01c.html)
1.3 - Realtime Heightmap Editor (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c01/c01d.html)
1.4 - Chapter Review (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c01/c01e.html)

Chapter Two: Mesh Creation, Deformation & Transformation

2.0 - Section Introduction (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c02/c02.html)
2.1 - Polygon Groundplane Creation (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c02/c02b.html)
2.2 - Subdivision Surface Groundplane Creation (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c02/c02c.html)
2.3 - Groundplane Deformation (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c02/c02d.html)
2.4 - Using the TextureScape Plugin (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c02/c02e.html)
2.5 - Chapter Review (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c02/c02f.html)

Chapter Three: Low Polygon Terrain Construction

3.0 - Section Introduction (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c03/c03.html)
3.1 - Low Polygon Heightmaps (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c03/c03b.html)
3.2 - Low Polygon Groundplanes (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c03/c03c.html)
3.3 - Low Polygon Displacement and Transformation (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c03/c03d.html)
3.4 - Recreating the Sea Floor (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c03/c03e.html)
3.5 - Chapter Review (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c03/c03f.html)

Chapter Four: Terrain Object Surface Breakdown

4.0 - Section Introduction (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c04/c01.html)
4.1 - General Area Surfaces (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c04/c04b.html)
4.2 - Detailed Surfaces (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c04/c04c.html)
4.3 - Planning Surface Modifications (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c04/c04d.html)
4.4 - Creating Surface Modifications (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c04/c04e.html)
4.5 - Chapter Review (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c04/c04f.html)

Chapter Five: Preparing Textures

5.0 - Section Introduction (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c05/c05.html)
5.1 - Gathering Texture Resources (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c05/c05b.html)
5.2 - Creating the Beach Texture (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c05/c05c.html)
5.3 - Creating the River and Lagoon Textures (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c05/c05d.html)
5.4 - Creating the Island Textures (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c05/c05e.html)
5.5 - Creating the Addon Textures (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c05/c05f.html)
5.6 - Chapter Review (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c05/c05g.html)

Chapter Six: Texturing Your Terrain

6.0 - Section Introduction (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c06/c06.html)
6.1 - Setting Up Primary Textures (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c06/c06b.html)
6.2 - Creating Secondary Textures (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c06/c06c.html)
6.3 - Creating Alpha Maps (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c06/c06d.html)
6.4 - Adding the Alpha Maps (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c06/c06e.html)
6.5 - Chapter Review (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c06/c06f.html)

Chapter Seven: Obscured By Clouds

7.0 - Section Introduction (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c07/c07.html)
7.1 - Using Gradients and Image Maps (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c07/c07b.html)
7.2 - Skydome Objects (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c07/c07c.html)
7.3 - Skytracer2 (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c07/c07d.html)
7.4 - Imageworld Plugin (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c07/c07e.html)
7.5 - Textured Enviroments (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c07/c07f.html)
7.6 - OGO Taiki (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c07/c07g.html)
7.7 - Additions to your Skies (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c07/c07h.html)
7.8 - Chapter Review (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c07/c07i.html)

Chapter Eight: Creating Water

8.0 - Section Introduction (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c08/c08.html)
8.1 - Creating the Water Plane (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c08/c08b.html)
8.2 - Displacement and Bumping (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c08/c08c.html)
8.3 - Depth Attenuation (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c08/c08d.html)
8.4 - Adding Shoreline Foam (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c08/c08e.html)
8.5 - Chapter Review (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c08/c08f.html)

Chapter Nine: Grass!

9.0 - Section Introduction (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c09/c09.html)
9.1 - Grass Using Textures (http://www.firedragon.com/~flashfire/html/landscapes/c09/c09b.html)

*9.2 - Grass Using Saslite and Sasquatch (not complete/online)
*9.3 - Grass Using Clip Mapped Objects (not complete/online)
*9.4 - Instancing Grass (not complete/online)
*9.5 - Chapter Review (not complete/online)

*Chapter Ten: Trees and Other Flora

*Chapter Eleven: Rocks, Debris and other Natural Clutter

*Chapter Twelve: Underwater Detailing

*Chapter Thriteen: Lighting and Shadows

*Chapter Fourteen: Camera Options and Image Filters

*Chapter Fifteen: Weather Effects

*Chapter Sixteen: Advanced Topics

*Addendums: Bonus Content

For updates to this awesome tutorial as they happen go to:
FlashFire Joes fine landscape tutorial at www.lwg3d.org (http://www.lwg3d.org/forums/showthread.php?t=14999)

01-12-2004, 03:32 AM
Here's another tut link BTW:


Alan Daniels
01-12-2004, 03:24 PM
Originally posted by Tesselator
Here, check this out...

Oooh, man! This is a goldmine. Thanks for posting this, Tesselator!