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Thread: Gaea is released

  1. #1
    Intermediate User Shloime's Avatar
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    Gaea is released

    Hi, just a heads up:

    Maybe I missed another official post, just wanted to point to it:
    Gaea is released and there is a free version with limited resolution, but perfect to play around and try the software. I didn't explore the export settings yet.

    Look at quadspinner.com
    Greetings, Shloime
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  2. #2
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    Hi, yeah gaea look very cool and promising, also the new upcoming draw mode.

    here is the directlink to gaeawebsite - https://quadspinner.com/gaea/
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  3. #3
    Super Member OlaHaldor's Avatar
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    Gaea has matured a lot during the last couple of months after it became available to early adopters.
    It's got some quirks and bugs, but they're being squished at rapid speed. It's an awesome newcomer, and should definitely be part of anyone's toolbox.

    If you have World Machine or World Creator 2 already, is there space for Gaea? Certainly. All these have their own strengths and weaknesses.


    If own them all, so feel free to ask about anything


    From the top of my head, these are my opinions on all three:

    World Machine
    + Node workflow, very versatile and flexible.
    + Import and process GeoTIFF and other heightmap formats.
    + Great for both natural/photo realistic and non-photo realistic landscapes.
    + Can do HUGE landscapes. Continents even.
    + Tiled output. Supports UDIMs too.
    + Rivers and lakes tool in the latest dev build looks promising.
    + Production proven and solid.
    + Few bugs.

    - Can be experienced as slow compared to competition, depends entirely on your CPU speed and number of cores.
    - Requires quite a bit of RAM for big projects. Better get 32GB or 64GB minimum. Or be super safe with 128GB.
    - Looks are deceiving; many I talk about WM with says they are put off by the "Windows 95" like interface. Too bad for them though they don't know what they're missing. But I agree it could need some modernizing.
    - Low resolution preview. Old tech.
    - Slow development.
    - Slow or dying community forums.


    Gaea
    + Modern UI and user experience.
    + Nodes - very flexible workflow!
    + Layer based workflow as an alternative to nodes.
    + Modern high quality 3D viewport.
    + Young product - more features being announced and in development.
    + An impressive amount of various erosion nodes!
    + Very active development - friendly, open for discussion, improvements and ideas.
    + Growing and helpful community.
    + Import custom heightmaps.

    - Can be buggy at times (they're squishing bugs fast though!)
    - No tiles export (yet)
    - Still young, missing some features.
    - Can export only 16K or 32K for now (will be easier to handle with tiles when it's released)


    World Creator 2
    + Rapid speed with GPU processing.
    + Tiled export.
    + A large selection of filters to process and refine the landscape.
    + Intuitive and interactive shape tools.
    + Intuitive and interactive masking tools - paint directly on the landscape (not a top-down view)
    + Possible to scatter foliage on the landscape, great to get an idea of scale, for screenshots or get started on concept art quickly.
    + Possible to import your own 3D meshes and textures, use to scatter or hand place, and texture the terrain.
    + Import custom heightmaps.
    + Powerful and intuitive way to translate, scale and rotate imported heightmaps.

    - Requires a relatively beefy GPU to work efficiently (I would say a GTX 1070/RTX 2070 at minimum)
    - GPU dictates how big the terrain can be. 8K is bordering to the limit of what's possible even with a 1080 or 1080 Ti without pulling hairs because of lower performance.
    - Cannot pick which tiles to export. It's either all or nothing.
    - Layer based/level step based workflow is not intuitive, and has some severe limitations to flexibility.
    - Masking tools aren't as refined or versatile as the competition.
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  4. #4
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    Thanks OlaHaldor. My question would be about licensing, and which one matches the friendly nature of LW licensing. I think Gaea Enterprise is the only one which allows offline usage - apparently Gaea is not node locked, but is any kind of online activation required ? Are the other softwares offline too ?

    Also, which one tops it for ease of use in your view (example think of thick jungle with running river and mountains in background) ? Many thanks.
    Last edited by TheLexx; 03-27-2019 at 03:39 AM.

  5. #5
    Super Member OlaHaldor's Avatar
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    Up until now, licensing for World Machine has been offline. You input a serial code when you launch. But that's about to change it seems. In the latest dev build you are required to input the license code, and it will connect to their server to verify.
    You can activate WM on up to two computers on one license, but run on only one computer at a time. You can deactivate the license at any time to move to a different computer.

    I'm not sure if World Creator 2 is online only or not. The launcher has the option to login to check for updates at least.


    Gaea and offline; Enterprise. That's it. I'm not sure how the other models go, as I have the enterprise license. And really, at that price point, I can't imagine why anyone wouldn't go enterprise.
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  6. #6
    Eat your peas. Greenlaw's Avatar
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    The demo/tutorial videos for Gaea look pretty cool. Considering the Indie price, I'll have to seriously think about this. Thanks for posting the info guys.

    I've always liked Vue Infinite and I kept up a maintenance subscription on a personal license for many years, but I might finally drop it this year because, TBH, I hardly ever use the program anymore. The last time I used Vue for actual production work was back in my Rhythm & Hues days, so maybe six years ago?

    Since then, I've created a lot of realistic environments mainly using LightWave with instanced trees, grass, rocks, etc., and terrain sculpted and painted with 3D Coat. Adding an affordable terrain generator like Gaea to this mix might be all I really need.

    I'll be giving up some cool bells and whistles from Vue, but I guess I'm not exactly missing them right now anyway.

  7. #7
    Eat your peas. Greenlaw's Avatar
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    OT but kinda related: Does anybody know of a decent and affordable city generator? There used to be an add-on for Vue that I never used, but I'd still like to have something that's compatible with LightWave.

    Recently, I had to create several city blocks and streets for LightWave and it was a real pain in the butt to create a realistic urban layout (i.e., irregular shaped blocks and streets, and non-flat terrain.) I experimented with using instances and some scripts I found, but everything I tried looked too grid-like or too random. In the end the city wound up being mostly created through hand modeling and placing. (And it wasn't really that realistic...I still took a lot of shortcuts to just get it done.)

    Surely by now there's gotta be an easier and cheaper way to do this?

    Thanks for any info.

  8. #8
    Eat your peas. Greenlaw's Avatar
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    Hmm...OpenStreetMap for Blender looks interesting. I don't use Blender but really should look into this. Here's a link I found with info:

    https://lesterbanks.com/2016/06/real...etmap-blender/

    Wonder if something like this could be made for LightWave.

    Found another one for Blender called SceneCity. I probably need to look at more examples but, so far, the results seem too 'grid-like' and only on flat terrain, so it probably wouldn't be used to simulate the city where I live which has hills and hardly any parallel streets. I guess there's a companion plugin for generating terrain but the example still shows flat terrain for the city area.

    Years ago I looked into City Engine but felt it was too rich for me. This morning I tried to find out what it costs now but they are asking for way too much information before they will tell me. Don't have time for that nonsense. Sigh!

  9. #9
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    @ Greenlaw, might Video CoPilot's Metropolitan Pack work for you in LW (compatible formats list OBJ and FBX) ?

  10. #10
    Eat your peas. Greenlaw's Avatar
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    Thanks. Looks like a good collection of assets.

    I'm really more interested in generating a realistic city layout though. Most of the stuff I'm seeing is very grid-like.

    I'm looking for something that can generate a city layout resembling, say, Los Angeles:

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	LosAngeles.JPG 
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ID:	144592

    LA can be somewhat 'grid-like' in very small neighborhoods but not for very long distances. I don't need something to exactly re-create LA but would like get similarly irregular urban layouts.

  11. #11
    Eat your peas. Greenlaw's Avatar
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    Find a few free to cheap solutions that might work out. They all seem to rely on OpenStreetMap data which I'm not familiar with. Guess I know what I'll be studying this weekend. :P

    I'll post again if I learn or discover anything new.

  12. #12

    Quote Originally Posted by Greenlaw View Post
    Hmm...OpenStreetMap for Blender looks interesting. I don't use Blender but really should look into this. Here's a link I found with info:
    https://lesterbanks.com/2016/06/real...etmap-blender/
    Wonder if something like this could be made for LightWave.
    should be doable, use https://www.openstreetmap.org and http://osm2world.org then import in LightWave.

    Found another one for Blender called SceneCity. I probably need to look at more examples but, so far, the results seem too 'grid-like' and only on flat terrain, so it probably wouldn't be used to simulate the city where I live which has hills and hardly any parallel streets. I guess there's a companion plugin for generating terrain but the example still shows flat terrain for the city area.
    yes, bit hard to find good info, and cost is $100, so no free testing.

    Years ago I looked into City Engine but felt it was too rich for me. This morning I tried to find out what it costs now but they are asking for way too much information before they will tell me. Don't have time for that nonsense. Sigh!
    i seldom bother with companies that don't have a price available, because it always means the cost will be way too high, however, this time, seems it starts at $500
    https://www.google.no/search?&q=city+engine+price

    ---------------

    personally, i'd go for the OSM 2 LightWave solution.
    more fluid / natural.

    then like TheLexx mentions, add 100 3D Models, $125, https://www.videocopilot.net/products/3d/metropolitan
    or > https://kitbash3d.com
    or > https://www.turbosquid.com/3d-model/...sort_order=asc
    or similar. Advanced Placement might be of use.

    ---------------

    @ OlaHaldor
    Thank You. Great info!  
    Last edited by erikals; 03-27-2019 at 09:46 PM.
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  13. #13
    Super Member OlaHaldor's Avatar
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    I just tried the OSM2World thing. It works. It's rough. But it works.
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  14. #14

    very cool
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  15. #15
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    Since a list of sorts was mentioned, I may as well name-drop Terragen and also ask if anyone has an opinion on the older terrain systems like Bryce or Carrara's inbuilt system. All examples I see are of scenic landscapes, maybe with a spaceship in the sky or a castle in the distance, rather like an establishing shot in a film, but if one wanted to get a bit more interactive, for example a character running through jungle whilst flicking branches out of the way or swimming in water - has anyone here faced such scenarios with terrain software ?
    Last edited by TheLexx; 03-28-2019 at 05:53 AM.

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