World Machine to Lightwave3D works quite well

scallahan1

Still...Absolute Amateur
Hi Folks,

I've followed a few threads talking about World Machine for generating maps to use in Lightwave3D and I just had to download it. After checking out the trial version and not being happy with 1025x1025 maps, I threw down for the Indie (Standard) version for $119 US. Since I'm only an amateur I do not believe I'll hit any walls concerning the limitations. I just used the default terrain and set the resolution to 8192x8192 and waited patiently for the build. Brought them in and did the usual displaced mesh routine. I used 2015 for this one because I'm more used to displacing mesh in it. It appears to be a great tool to use with Lightwave. I know there's plenty of other terrain generators out there as you folks mentioned all of them in other threads. I had to pick one, though. :)

I made a quick low-res 960x540 10 second animation to see the results. Quite enjoyable so far.

World Machine to Lightwave3D

Steve
 

prometheus

REBORN
seems to be looking good...but I
am Looking at it on my phone and in bed..I will check tomorrow on a big monitor.

iv'e been messing with worldmachine too..but gaea is more fun and much faster to apply erosions and builds with.

I haven't checked the comparative pricing though.
 

prometheus

REBORN
Looked at it on the bigger monitor, still looking good.

2015 though, and you should perhaps try a slightly softer sampled light, dp sunlight perhaps? right now the shadows seems to be at 0 angle, the only size you can get from the standard distant light.

And why not try add cloud shadows by using a flat poly or a huge dome that is 100% transparent except for where you add a fractal texture in the transparency channel, it will give the scenery more dramatic looks, unless pure clear sky that is.

Like I did here, but the godrays will be to slow to handle with hypervoxels, here I used lw 2019 and the newer volumetrics and added a volumetric item with tiny amount of scattering and density, to catch any light ray, and of course the transparent plane with the fractal texture is controlling how large the shadows and rays are shaped, as well as the contrast in the fractals governs the softness of the rays and the shadows, the softness of the shadows is further more also controlled by the dp sunlights size angle, this one set to be a little higher than typical true sunlight angle of 0.52

The fractal used for the transparent plane(also hide it in render panel as unseen by camera) is plain old tubulence and it can be seen in the opengl viewport to the right.

 

scallahan1

Still...Absolute Amateur
OMG yes I absolutely hate the shadows on my quickie animation but I didn't know what to do about it. I like the landscape itself so I will probably try one of those things you mentioned. I'd really love to get some godrays in there. I'll look into this soon. Mondays I am so pooped out after work cuz I don't sleep well Sunday nights cuz I don't usually expend enough energy on the weekends. Save it up for the work week. :) It won't be long tonight when my brain starts to fail and the rack calls. ;)

Thanks for the suggestions.
Steve
 

prometheus

REBORN
OMG yes I absolutely hate the shadows on my quickie animation but I didn't know what to do about it. I like the landscape itself so I will probably try one of those things you mentioned. I'd really love to get some godrays in there. I'll look into this soon. Mondays I am so pooped out after work cuz I don't sleep well Sunday nights cuz I don't usually expend enough energy on the weekends. Save it up for the work week. :) It won't be long tonight when my brain starts to fail and the rack calls. ;)

Thanks for the suggestions.
Steve

Godrays isn´t that easy in 2015 with this method, you don´t use volumetric lights in 2015 you need to use hypervoxels as fog items, and that is tricky, you may want to check
bryphi77 on youtube, he has a tutorial on that.

In 2019 is a bit better I think for this.
but otherwise you can see here below how well it works in 2015, and that was with an older machine and the hv legacy system, you perhaps only can work with, with 2015 and not really in 2019 either even though clouds and volumetrics is way better for this stuff, I wouldn´t recommend combining this method in 2015 with true hypervoxels volumetric clouds, just fake it and use backdrop images, and a transparent cloud plane, rays cast will however not match accurately from any image backdrop since that is something else..but you may get away with that kind of fake.

another method is to use a spherical cloud dome, and extract an alpha map, a black and white image from that, and then make two geometrical sphere domes, once with transparency and using that black and white image alpha, that one should be unseen by camera but react to sunlight passing through casting shadows, then the other dome, slightly larger should be the cloud image, and then reference them to the same null, this way you could rotate the dome and have the godrays follow the image quite accurate, though it´s only suitable for rotationall control since you shouldn´t move the cloud directionally with that, not with a skydome, if there is somekind of pre-animated skydome, that would be the best to get movement as well.

 
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scallahan1

Still...Absolute Amateur
Hmm. I may consider moving the whole shebang to 2020 version since I really only have displacement to deal with so far. Good info u gave. :)
Thanks,
Steve
 

prometheus

REBORN
Hmm. I may consider moving the whole shebang to 2020 version since I really only have displacement to deal with so far. Good info u gave. :)
Thanks,
Steve

I can´t recall how it was with octane...if it could use the rman textures and all the others for the volumetrics, that´s the way to go in such case...meaning extra cost for additional render engine, I say if You want to get the best out of it with decent render times, and also true volumetric multiple scattering.

The clouds you can make with native 2019 is pretty nice..If you know how to tweak it that is, but it fails in providing fast GI rendering, and also true multiple volume bouncing I believe.

The global volumetric scattering can work with volumeric clouds, but I really don´t recommend it for large scale skyscapes, it´s just too slow (depending on cpu of course)
You can see a little sample of global volumetric scattering here with moving volumetric clouds, but it´s not real scale, and it´s tricky to get the rays good, you have to deal with the light´s volumetric distance, and find out how far you are from it with the camera and the clouds, and going to high with the distance, you get uggly sharp clipping around the cloud edges (which may be adjusted with curves in density or texture amplitude) and it may be corrected by pulling back the distance a bit.
Very short clip, due to long rendertimes.

 

been looking a bit at World Machine also (again)

Nice results for certain mountain styles.
For more "rocky" stuff sculpting is the way.

tho' a combination is of course an option.


 

prometheus

REBORN
been looking a bit at World Machine also (again)

Nice results for certain mountain styles.
For more "rocky" stuff sculpting is the way.

tho' a combination is of course an option.

Yup, sculpting the rocks, or use photogrammetry or both.
there are ways to extract at leat ortho images and apply erosions on the bottom of the rocks, as "almost" was showcased in the Lightwave to terragen tutorials.

Not sure about worldmachine and it´s status, easy to work with to some degree, but it´s to slow compared to Gaea, and the development status seem a bit stagnated?
Anyway..downloaded the basic 4020 release to see what has changed since then, will get back on the feedback vs Gaea later.
 

prometheus

REBORN
OMG yes I absolutely hate the shadows on my quickie animation but I didn't know what to do about it. I like the landscape itself so I will probably try one of those things you mentioned. I'd really love to get some godrays in there. I'll look into this soon. Mondays I am so pooped out after work cuz I don't sleep well Sunday nights cuz I don't usually expend enough energy on the weekends. Save it up for the work week. :) It won't be long tonight when my brain starts to fail and the rack calls. ;)

Thanks for the suggestions.
Steve

Forgot to say, in 2015 version of lightwave, all you can do for fixing the harsh distant light shadows, is to either use a dome light, but change angle on that to very low level, like 0,52 or 1-5 perhaps, to soften the shadows, since the dome light is a sampled light type.

Or better, install Dpsunsky for that version, it also has this sample setting, for better realism when the sunlight is going up or down, you should go in to the lights color channel and under modifier add the sunssky Suncolor, there is a script for this but I usually do it manually.

I think you need the 2011 version for lightwave 2015, since there wasn´t any specific update there after that until 2018, it will give you soft shadows with sampled lights, increasing angle size..more softer and 0,52 usually is the default setting for an accurate shadow softness from the sun as I am aware of.

In 2019-2020 versions of Lightwave, there is a native physical sky, but lately I think ivé mostly used dp sunsky instead, a bit easier for me to control as I want, though the physical sky and it´s sunlight may be more accurate, and I do not use the newer sunlight type in there, but go for the standard default light, but changing with sampled size, since they added that as well to the standard light in 2019-2020 versions.
But I only have 2019.1.5 and don´t plan to upgrade soon, so there are some changes with environment and GI I do know too little about.
 

prometheus

REBORN
um, can't you use DP infinite light for that ?

Yes, I think it does..it says so on his site, I honestly haven´t used that much..probably got unistalled when I re-installed lw 2015.
" DP Infinite
-DP Infinite is a Light plugin which looks like the LW Distant Light but with soft shadows.
-Select "Square" (faster), "Disk" or "HemiSpherical" area shape,
distribution of samples are different and modify the quality of ray-traced soft-shadows.

-Adjust "Angle" parameter for soft shadows, with this parameter softness of shadows
are not dependant of the Infinite Light distance.

-DP Infinite Light has no caustics.
"


We could look at Dp Infinite Light, and the SK_sunlight and check which one is ideal under what situation, which one renders fastest, best quality and behaves more like true sunlight etc, or other advantages.

But I haven´t had a reason to use that to get the soft shadows in LW 2015, the SK sunlight does the soft shadows as well...se samples in the image below..
Thank´s for reminding me about Dp Infinite light, I need to make sure all those are installed as well and go through them a bit more actually.

The newer physical light in Lightwave 2019 and above, I think looks a bit odd in terms of it´s shadow softness, It might be a bug or a completely different take on how shadow sofness actually occurs based on how real sunlight cast shadows, I will have to check that up more closely again.

SK_Sunlight shadow softness angle variations.jpg
 
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yeah, both SK sunlight and DP infinite is worth a go in LW2015.

my "major" issue with 11/2015 is basically Volumetric Fog/Clouds/Smoke.
which you kinda talked about earlier above i believe.

it lacks the nice SSS style one can see in Octane.
(not going the Octane route as of now)

 

prometheus

REBORN
yeah, both SK sunlight and DP infinite is worth a go in LW2015.

my "major" issue with 11/2015 is basically Volumetric Fog/Clouds/Smoke.
which you kinda talked about earlier above i believe.

it lacks the nice SSS style one can see in Octane.
(not going the Octane route as of now)

SSS..I hear that mentioned sometimes with volumetric scattering, not sure that is what you should refer to for the right terms regarding volumetrics, sub surface happens withing a surface material, clouds has none, it´s just scattering of light within particle volumes.

But for volumetric scattering, yes..2015 and legacy volumetrics has none, it´s just opacity and various illumination methods with beer, rayleigh that determines how the light is passing through, but it doesn´t really bounce scatter, but then again..the actual multiple scattering in newer 2019 seems absent, or not taking proper effect, you have no control to set multiple indirect radiosity bounces, only rays in the GI tab and to me it seems it does nothing to really impact any indirect multiple scattering, even if you increase indirect intensity ..which isn´t the same thing as multiple scattering.

These two images, just a slight difference in density so it gives more contrasted shadows in the last image( no post processing) straight from the interactive render at a level of around 400 for final quality and 50 bounces, in another software I occasionally use.
Darn near impossible to get this with native LW 2019 render engine and GI, even though the volumetrics can be nice with within volume item, but for VDB multiple scattering and the lack of those shadow intensity controls, and a poor interpolation method, it just don´t get there, so VDB volumes for clouds in lightwave I am probably going to stay away until they get a those things fixed and stick to what currently works in other software.

Ivé asked if Lightwave Guru could take this free Disney asset and see how Octane performs, he showed me another sample, but we shouldn´t use other samples when I refered to this asset that can be compared against hyperion as well, so I am still waiting for that..but I think he is occupied with other more important matters for his business of course, so nothing wrong with that, just a bit of a shame that no one in here (there must be those using octane) has tested it and showed some samples with octane and this asset.

multiple scatter in clouds.jpg
 

prometheus

REBORN
Oh...

If using lw 2015 for Volumetric clouds, I would say forget it and , forget legacy hypervoxels for the realistic stuff and spend time on using another software you have access to, or upgrade to lw 2020 perhaps if that is the only way to work inside of Lightwave, I got it covered with 2019, so no need for upgrades to 2020 for my part, at least not when it comes to standard volumetric item clouds, VDB volumes as I said... is just simply not good enough inside of native LW 2019, unless using octane perhaps.
(dreaming of cycles-x, e-cycles for lightwave of course, if that guy is succesful, an perhaps he should be hired by vizrt and joined with other forces perhaps to speed up that process, if vizrt has that passion and intent to be competitive..with Lightwave that is)

You got embergen Erikals, I don´t ..so pull out some nice sims from that, and start rendering with multiple scattering as showed in these images above :)
 
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Oh...
If using lw 2015 for Volumetric clouds, I would say forget it...
Yeah, it is very close to my "Forget" trash bin
Too tricky.

Yes, got Ember, was almost gonna cancel it, but paid for 5 months already, so guess i might as well continue.
Kinda just sitting on the fence now watching the Ember progress.
for 11/2015 i'll probably run with a backdrop spherical sky image/render from another app or such.
reminds me, some good ones here >
but 11/2015 surely is limited when it comes to this, the only "real" hack is using Octane.



wish i had more time but, hey...


 

if vizrt has that passion and intent to be competitive..with Lightwave that is)
no, they basically pulled the plug on the traditional LightWave.
they will either transform it into something "non-LightWave" or sell it,... or let it go...

leritgho.gif


 

prometheus

REBORN
Yeah, it is very close to my "Forget" trash bin
Too tricky.

Yes, got Ember, was almost gonna cancel it, but paid for 5 months already, so guess i might as well continue.
Kinda just sitting on the fence now watching the Ember progress.
for 11/2015 i'll probably run with a backdrop spherical sky image/render from another app or such.
reminds me, some good ones here >
but 11/2015 surely is limited when it comes to this, the only "real" hack is using Octane.



wish i had more time but, hey...

Yup, the backdrop image or image sequences/animations is one way to go, unless employing terragen.
There seem to be no magic tool that does all this with full volumetrics in decent time for a medium level hardware equipment, the pro´s uses
renderfarms anyway.
for stills it will take some hour or more for a really nice image, for hobby users that will be the limit kind of, going for animation and you need to invest for that with better tools for drafts (octane) terragen etc, and find a good renderfarm solution.

Unfortunately my passion is much about volumetrics of all kinds, and that is one of the most computer intensive tasks there is I believe, many times I have asked myself why
I continue to mess around with it, it takes too much time, but it´s darn fun for stills anyway.

And back to back/drops :)
Not entirely sure how much volumetrics Ridley Scott and weta or other studios employed use for the movie prometheus and the coventant, but I think they opted mostly to work
with pre-recorded photage of real cloud layers, then mixing that in several ways, at least for the major part of some clouds, some elements as for the first movie and the decent down to the planet I think was a volumetric simulation, and some part´s in coventant when they needed som flyby interaction within a certain cloud, but other than that..probably mostly real cloud photage, they can fly out and take some with that kind of resources.

But for landscape and lighting and shadows, I think they used pretty much same principles as I covered with lights and shadows and casting rays projected to geometry surface, though they used cinema4D mostly for that, and it also took a long time to render, but that was probably because of the level of poly detail needed for the terrain, I think it took around 8 hours per frame for some shots where the terrain was CG,
 
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