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Thread: What software are you using for Landscape/ foliage generation?

  1. #16
    Eat your peas. Greenlaw's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by prometheus View Post
    For free alternatives, I would recommend looking in to blenders ANT landscape...

    ...Roads and paths may be nice to work on with blender, either drawing directly with grease pencil or with curves and stroke on surface, then if needed to be fused witht the landscape..just remesh it all.
    I keep telling myself I need to learn Blender, even if I use it only as a support program for LightWave. So much to do, so little time. Sigh!

    Actually, I'm very interested in learning how to use Blender's Grease Pencil since much of my work involves 2D animation these days.

  2. #17

    Blender is nice, but a bit easy to get lost in that app. Quite powerful, and very complex.

    i use it for this and that.
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  3. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by Greenlaw View Post
    I used to use Vue, mostly back in my Rhythm & Hues days. It's very powerful and worked well with LightWave and Fusion. Some of the projects we used it in are a Fable: The Journey trailer and a Halo: Midnight trailer for MS, and other video game trailers and cinematics. You can see some of that on my Rhythm reel. I also used an old standalone program called Tree to create a lot of alien trees in our cinematics for Star Wars Kinect. Tree worked very well but its UI was archaic even back then. We also had XFrog but I'm not sure I ever used it there.
    Never was a fan of Vues erosion tools, I thought even bryce was a tad better in that regard. What was the nail in the coffin, was that geocontrol (and gaea) does allow you to generate flow maps, wich is (imho) godsend for texturing. Also GC allowed to use isolines to shape the terrain (like adding paths).
    Also LW progressed in regards of texturing an instancing that vue became more and more obsolete.

  4. #19

  5. #20
    RETROGRADER prometheus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tischbein3 View Post
    Never was a fan of Vues erosion tools, I thought even bryce was a tad better in that regard. What was the nail in the coffin, was that geocontrol (and gaea) does allow you to generate flow maps, wich is (imho) godsend for texturing. Also GC allowed to use isolines to shape the terrain (like adding paths).
    Also LW progressed in regards of texturing an instancing that vue became more and more obsolete.
    Thatīs not where vue shines really, neither landscape tools or vegetation as mentioned with all other options with worldmachine, geocontrol, gaea..and instancing and tools for creating trees.
    Still think itīs the spectral sky engine and clouds and volumetrics, even though we got more tools now with volumetrics..itīs about getting a spectral physical sky right, which only vue and terragen does properly..and with infinit cloud layer and also have it decently working when all layers are there for fog, clouds and godrays.

    Individually you may set this up in lightwave ..but when you try and slam all of it, global scattering, volumetric clouds (which still isnīt infinite) and getting godrays going on at a decent quality..you may very well end up with more extreme render times than terragen and vue actually does..that is with all that combined, if you can manage only volume clouds in lightwave..that may work though, but we still lack a proper realistic skymodel as spectral volumetric, the global scattering doesnīt replace that or add that in my opinion.

    Then again..many would probably not even use the volumetrics ..and just have use for terrain and vegetation, then slam on simple physical sky or hdrīs.

    The only interesting of later years was that vue implemented vdb import..which if I had an interest and motivation..I think I could produce awesome skies with muc more realistic hero clouds, but as mentioned..the team behind vue nowadays seems determined to kill it off with prescription..and a lousy site for checking the features of vue...Havenīt gone there the latest year to check it out, and I am not bothering even to try the demos out longer.

    Vue vent for VDB import which I think was the best priority though..while terragen is looking at the wrong end for VDB export...think they should have focused on getting it in instead, canīt stand terragen interface and controls either, and I canīt stand the horrible cloudfractals vue has ..which rocks in terragen.

    No tool is doing it the way it should do to the full extent..so the story goes.

  6. #21
    RETROGRADER prometheus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by erikals View Post
    Blender is nice, but a bit easy to get lost in that app.
    For me ...not that much getting lost anymore, think itīs way less complex or convuluted as compared to houdini..and itīs terrain tools.

    By the way, the simple rock creator can do some nice starting rock blocks, clone it a couple of times, and place on top of eachoter, boolean merge it..and remesh, copy with od copy and paste and paste in to lightwave layout, use surface displacement and the crackle procedural.

    Itīs an easy process that brings some of the direct ease of rock base..which would be more tedious in lightwave, but then heading over to lightwave for some better fractals than blender has..or at least it is easier to use, and thatīs because of how you can layer fractals and use the nodes for displacement...which I am not overly happy with in blender.

    Then again..we got photogrammetry and pre-scans.

  7. #22

    [B] certainly improved,
    Houdini... i gave it up, i think...   
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  8. #23

    rock creator

    looks alright, i'll probably use other methods, but i'm sure it will be super in the near future.

    this one looks alright also >
    https://www.cgrecord.net/2017/09/roc...-engine-4.html

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  9. #24


    also neat, some Unreal magic >  
    notice how the rock merges with the landscape, yet is a separate object (!)
    https://forums.unrealengine.com/comm...rs-battlefront

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  10. #25
    Eat your peas. Greenlaw's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Markc View Post
    I would never had thought to use 3D Coat for terrains.......
    I will have to give this a go.
    Currently only use it for 3D painting.
    3DC is fantastic for terrain when I have something very specific in mind, which is usually the case. Like everything, it takes a bit of practice to get convincing results but the process is pretty fast once you get the hang of it.

    Come to think of it, I did need to model a specific piece of terrain at work last year. We don't have 3D Coat there so I used ZBrush, which I found works very well for terrain too. Also, there are third party brush packs you can buy designed for modeling terrain and they're pretty cheap.

  11. #26
    RETROGRADER prometheus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by erikals View Post
    rock creator

    looks alright, i'll probably use other methods, but i'm sure it will be super in the near future.

    Itīs not really the rock creator only which unleashes the power, itīs when you combine it well in piling up..remesh fuse them, and either sculpt on top of that, or add procedural displacement, and finally texturing surfacing.
    That rock creator for unreal, I can see the potentional, though those samples are too repitive I think..and that kind of schiffer sharp rocks is the hardest type to do I think.

    Sample image, on rock generator piece..cloned 3 times, rotated a bit, boolean merge, remesh, od copy and paste, send to layout..added crack displacement, dp rock displacement, used a gain for the function to sharpen certain areas in the cracks..sort of crushing levels, using the same crack procedural for a gradient to control the color.

    If not working with photogrammetry, and quixel and free scans, sculpting in zbrush, 3dcoat or blender requires the sculpture skills and an approach to get it right, roughing out the main shape, level 2 shapes of sharper shiffer, terrace levels, then level 3 of finer cracks, and a possible layer 4 or noise bumps and distortions.




    Click image for larger version. 

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    and if lacking brushes, you can always make your own in Lightwave ..but seriously ..really special designed if you can afford it..and you know you got a project, then get some of that, or get zbrush, cause thatīs the only one that can get an alpha brush from any sculpted part you do, to use as a brush when you further continue to sculpt..or use it with blender or 3D coat..so a grab doc tool for blender would really be something..but I donīt think itīs possible, a different base core for how zbrush handles it...maybe by exporting the object out as displacement map and convert to alpha map for a brush somehow.


  12. #27
    RETROGRADER prometheus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by erikals View Post

    also neat, some Unreal magic >  
    notice how the rock merges with the landscape, yet is a separate object (!)

    Havenīt tried..but would be awesome if possible with the vdb remeshing, yet still maintaining the different two materials for each boolean object so to speak.
    But at such level needed for rock displacement..and then performing remeshing on top of that..hardly not for a realtime performance.

  13. #28
    Super Member CaptainMarlowe's Avatar
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    I used to use Terragen free version and export to LW. Before that, I went for Vue but dropped it years ago. This days, I use mainly Houdini, or Blender ANT. I have also used 3D-coat alot (and start to use it more and more again, as I am preparing my transition to Linux... only to re-discover that for painting, it works very well and has some nice features I don't have in my old Licence of Substance Painter).
    When I need a specific landscaping, I sometimes also use Metamorphic directly inside LW.

  14. #29
    ack ack Markc's Avatar
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    Do this mean your dropping LightWave.....if your moving to Linux?
    Mac Pro (2010) OSX 10.13 RX580 Pulse LW2020
    (plugins: LWcad 2018, TFD 1427, Syflex 2018, StarPro 2020, ExrTrader 2020, Ubercam 2.0, RR Daz Mocap (not working), DP Light 2020)

  15. #30
    Super Member CaptainMarlowe's Avatar
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    Most likely, yes, unless the devs manage to fix the problem preventing to activate the license for or LW under Wine. This is sad, because except for this licensing problem, LW runs fine with Wine.

    Which means my primary packages will certainly be Blender, Houdini and 3D-Coat. I will also use Chronosculpt which has a Linux version, maybe Substance Painter and Designer, if I manage to install them (only CentOS is supported by Allegorithmic), and maybe a few others that I would manage to run natively or under Wine.
    My greatest lost with dumping Mac OS will be FCP X/Motion and the tons of plug-ins I have for them. But I'll live through it, and I start to get comfy with DVR/Fusion, so no showstopper, here.
    Of course, if a solution appeared that allowed to use LW under Wine, I would continue to use it, because I like it for a lot of reasons, especially (I know, people think I'm out fo my mind when I say that) the new render engine which I really love.
    Last edited by CaptainMarlowe; 04-10-2020 at 06:05 AM.

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