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Thread: Lightwave + Terrain Generator Question

  1. #1
    bmadigital.com Wickster's Avatar
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    Lightwave + Terrain Generator Question

    I'm planning on purchasing either Bryce 5 or Vue 4, but I don't know how they work with Lightwave. Does anybody here know which would be a smarter purchase for Lightwave user like us?

    Considering that since DAZ took over Bryce and selling it for a super low price of $89.99 and 3D World Mag has included a full version of Vue 3, with upgrade price of $29.99.

    Any help would be much appriciated.
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  2. #2
    Registered User hazmat777's Avatar
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    I haven't gotten into it too deeply yet, but I'm very happy with my first attempts of importing landscapes from Vue 4. It seems to only import the terrain and leave off any modified texturing. It just applies a sort of generic green/stone look depending on the angle of the polygons and elevation. Not a lot of testing done though on my part so maybe there is a work around.
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  3. #3
    Dreamer MooseDog's Avatar
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    if you're committed to purchasing a terrain generator/editor, take a look at this:

    Leveller

    no texturing, no radiosity, no extra bells, just heightfield editing, with import/export support for a TON of file formats.

    for free, there are also a lot of options like terragen. google is your friend here
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  4. #4
    bmadigital.com Wickster's Avatar
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    THANKS!!

    leveller looks like an awesome program...though i might have to brush up on my texturing skills (which i don't have.)

    Though I would think vue should have more support for lightwave since the company has also done Ozone for LW. But that leveller sure looks sweet...
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  5. #5
    Super Member Silkrooster's Avatar
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    Vue should beable to handle lightwave object easier than Bryce. Vue can import LW Objects not sure about scenes I think its objects only. Vue can export terrains to LW. If you want to export complete scenes to LW then you need Vue Pro.
    Bryce can import Lightwave 5 objects, I don't recall if the textures worked or not I don't think so. You can export terrains and symmetrical lattices and some imported objects to LW. Currently there is no way to export a complete scene to LW.
    Vue 5 is due to come out to the market. Soon Bryce upgrade should be available, Daz wanted a verion out this fall and a full upgrade next year. People are entering their wish list for Bryce on DAZ's web forum. Vue 5 looks very promising. They plan on adding HDRI, Radiosity and more. With the pro version to follow later.
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  6. #6
    CORE 5718 mattclary's Avatar
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    Make sure to check out Terragen, it's free.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by mattclary
    Make sure to check out Terragen, it's free.
    And it has a dedicated Lightwave exporter: no fussing around with .obj files

    Definitely keep an eye on this product: the next version looks like it`s really going places.

    R

  8. #8
    Dreamer MooseDog's Avatar
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    it has a dedicated Lightwave exporter
    true on the face of it, but sadly the exporter is limited to terrains of 256x256 size. depending on your needs, alot of detail will get lost.

    i'll second the terragen is a sweet little app thoughts. unfortunately, heightfield editing is currently not one of its strengths. yeah, it can generate those random (kinda sometimes fake lookin) fractal heightfields, but (again depending on your needs wickster) if you need to get dirty and edit and model a heightfield, terragen won't help you. leveller specializes in just that.

    the next version of terragen should play very nicely w/lw as the author worked for a lw house in l.a. for awhile.
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  9. #9
    I AM THE Action_Bob
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    I checked out Terragen and thought it was promising. I am even thinking of sinking the 100 bucks for the registered version. I was wondering if some peeps have used it to import models into lightwave for rendering - what is the best way to import the mesh and reduce the poly count to a reasonable level without the hassle of 3point polys and the smoothing errors you get from them. I was thinking htat maybe a better approach would be to have a meshed sub-patch in lightwave and import the rgb file from terragen instead of the actual mesh - and use that as a displacement map? Any suggestions?

    -Adrian

  10. #10
    CORE 5718 mattclary's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ACLOBO
    ...the hassle of 3point polys and the smoothing errors you get from them.
    Say what?

    Quote Originally Posted by ACLOBO
    ...a better approach would be to have a meshed sub-patch in lightwave...
    Huh!?!?

    The max mesh size appears to be 129032 polygons, not exactly heavy.

    Here is a quick screenshot from modeler. not bad for something you can get for free.
    Last edited by mattclary; 02-20-2009 at 11:58 AM.

  11. #11
    Newbie Member hulagirl7's Avatar
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    Don't goof with bryce.
    It's more 3d app than "landscape generator"

    VistaPro seems better than bryce. And cheaper. Can Xport too.

    I LOVE TERRAGEN!
    But it's not complete.
    Excellent to fool with now, but just wait 'til 1.0... ROCKIN'!!! (pun intended)

    Vue's newest version thinks it's a full-featured 3d application. It's not. And
    shouldn't be. I THOUGHT they were specializing in landscape/terrain.
    Not anymore.

    World Construction Set- it's so cool with all it's ecosystem settings,
    and I feel it's top on 3d terrain + LW. The plants/trees are 2d, but after customizing, they look suweet. But it's too much $$$$, in my opinion.

    I know spending enuff time with LW, I can create better landscape than
    these apps. But takes more time. Not spoon-fed, like fore-mentioned.

    For the best interaction, and minimal export/compatibility-hassle, I feel like
    LW + HD instance + Xfrog plant libraries = cheaper & more flexibility.

    mahalo

  12. #12

    What to buy, what to buy!

    Well, I've used Bryce 5 for over a year now. What Bryce does well is 2d rendering. You know, set up the objects and adjust lighting and sky and send to the render engine for print purposes. And I dont care what others are saying right now, but Bryce skys blow SKY TRACER out of the water. But, you can't pull Bryce sky planes or water planes into LW. Bryce can pull LW5 Objects into its engine. Now, you can make skies and water images in Bryce, render down to a 2d image, save the file as your favorite image type and use it as a backdrop in LW. Its not as dynamic as a 3d wrap around but depending on your needs will fool the eye everytime. For less than $100 its worth a try anyway.

    Terragen is a program i've had for about a week. If the new version due out next year delivers what is says, then Terragen will be a good tool to have. While the export to LW is limited right now to 255x255 the plan is to boost that up. Terragen is fun though. If you like making landscapes and such you will have a good time with it. The terrains you export to LW are not as detailed as in Terragen but can ve very usefull in the right job or project. And the skys are fun to make and give great realism. Again, as in Bryce you can work up your skies in Terragen, save them down as an image file and use them as great backdrops in LW.

    All we have to do as LW users is fool the eye. How we do that is up to us. Happy creating!
    I have a couple bryce files on my website. www.provinestudios.com
    http://provinestudios.com/html/finea...ed_forest.html
    http://provinestudios.com/html/edito...tml/clown.html

  13. #13
    bmadigital.com Wickster's Avatar
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    gackt! too much choices, i didn't know there that many options for generating terrain. well better get downloading, i guess i'll start with the free one first. Thanks!


    World Construction Set- it's so cool with all it's ecosystem settings,
    and I feel it's top on 3d terrain + LW. The plants/trees are 2d, but after customizing, they look suweet. But it's too much $$$$, in my opinion.
    yeah...i thought World Construction Set would be the best choice but looking at the price, i quickly dropped it from my list. I'll Try out Terragen and see where i go from there.

    I know spending enuff time with LW, I can create better landscape than
    these apps. But takes more time. Not spoon-fed, like fore-mentioned.
    i wish i had time to play around LW to create my own landscape but i just don't.


    Thanks again all! again, Our LW Community ROCKS!!!
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  14. #14
    I AM THE Action_Bob
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    Hey Wickster, this is another option - I found this tutorial on the LWgroup and it is pretty involved. The nice thing about it is that the "essential" toolset the author has a link to is a collection of free plug-ins / programs that they use during the tutorial. Of special interest is the "free" realtime heightmap editor for BattleField 1942. The thing that makes it intersting is that since it is meant to mod a first person shooter, you get to roam around your landscape while you edit it. Maybe it will help.

    http://www.lwg3d.com/forums/showthread.php?t=14999

    -Adrian

  15. #15
    I recently downloaded Terragen and really like it. I think the render quality is superior to Bryce and Vue - though I am basing this on what I see on the respective company's sites. (Terragen render quality is illustrated well on that Mars video on the Terragen site.) For rendering backdrops that are composited with LW, Terragen could be pretty good, apart from the limitations such as no trees or foliage.

    On the down side, terrains that I have exported from Terragen to LW just don't look right, maybe as someone said, because of lack of detail. They might be okay as distant objects though.

    Best regards

    Alex

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