View Full Version : Terrain Evolving

FwO Raven
15th Apr 2000, 04:07 AM
Well yesterday you saw my post from my previous try to make an out door terrain, this is now my second try, I have 11 in game shots (first 9 are in spectator mode so polycount is higher then in first person mode since I am higher above ground)
Average polycount is 290 but I get an average of 46 fps in first person mode (This time I used OpenGl instead of Direct3D)

TerOmen: I downloaded your terrain (GrandCanyon, really cool /infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif but u could have decreased the polycount by half if you would have used adaptive triangulation, check this screen shot to see what I mean:
On the left is my mesh with adaptive triangulation and on the right the grid triangulation (as you used it), the adaptive triangulation is much more detailed in areas where it is important and uses only have as many polygons as grid triangulation. (just a suggestion /infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

The 11 in game screen shot are only as link so you don't have to wait for all of them to load:


As you can see I got the found out how to properly and quickly apply the textures /infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

15th Apr 2000, 06:49 AM
I've never used it, but I believe that TerraEdit is unable to do adaptive triangulation (which is why I'm using vertex manipulation on a bunch of triangular brushes in my level... Takes a lot of time, but gives me a lot more control).

Which program did you use to model that terrain?

15th Apr 2000, 07:03 AM
Indeed hunchback, terraedit doen't have adaptive triangulation. I would sure want to know which program you have used.

Andirez - Team Duck

FwO Raven
15th Apr 2000, 04:12 PM
Well the easiest method is to make your terrain in Bryce4 and the export it (Bryce will let you select if you want adaptive triangulation or grid triangulation)
Another way would be to import the dfx file from TerraEdit into 3D Studio Max and the use an optimize mesh plug-in.

Well I would suggest using Bryce though if you don't have 3dsmax, (it is a lot cheaper and you can also make cool ground textures in it).

15th Apr 2000, 05:00 PM
Raven dude, some questions if I may...

What CPU and 3D card do you have ?

Do the know the theory behind adaptive triangulation ?

When you use Bryce4 (would Bryce2 do the job) do you build your terrain by hand or can you source it from an imported bitmap for the height field approach ?

Which triangulation method do you think is best for the UT engine, ie keeping that all so important polycount down, remembering that you must still allow for Buildings, Bots, mutator effects etc etc. ?


FwO Raven
15th Apr 2000, 06:28 PM
1.) I have a K6-2 350MHz, 192Mb 100MHz SDRAM, Riva TNT video card (Asus V3400TV) and Aureal Vortex2 8830 audio card.
2.) Do I know the theory of adaptive triangulation? Yes, I think /infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif: basically vertices are placed at points where there is a set change in elevation in the plane of a face, thereby large flat areas and evenly sloped areas only require very few polygons while areas with a lot of elevation changes still maintain their detail.
3.) I don't think Bryce2 will do, the main problem is that Bryce2 (as well as Bryce3d) does not have good terrain export options. (the object export function was one of the main upgrades of Bryce4 toward previous versions), but I am not totally sure about that since I don't have Bryce2.
4.) Do I build it by hand? hmmm it is very easy to create terrains in bryce and then apply effects to it which makes it look realistically, basically the way you build terrains in bryce is by painting a height image. (what you would usually do in a picture editor and the load in to TerraEdit, just that it has many cool filters specially designed for terrains)
5.) I think adaptive triangulation is better in general since it uses only about half the polygons for a terrain with the same detail as a terrain created with grid triangulation.

15th Apr 2000, 09:24 PM
Cool stuff indeed Raven...

Thinks... I need that AT (shhheshhh thats a long word) real bad...

Looks like I will have to get a copy of this Bryce4 animal just to improve my terrains, looks like it would make my life easyier, I spend a lot of time messing with the terrain brushes that TerraEdit creates, I use UnrealEd to do as much AT as I can /infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif well just lots of those flat polygons I join up to be one...

Question how much is Bryce4 ?

Can it also help texturing or is that as per usual - UnrealEd... ?

Do you not think that even an average of 290 is rather high.... what is the top end of that polycount, with your levels do you intend on using cunning techniques to make them playable with building, 15 bots all running around and mod specific game AI.


15th Apr 2000, 09:32 PM
Just a few more questions...

Lightly, do you use any, or is it all ambient lighting

Textures the shadows are just textures yes... ?

A 2048x2048 image cut into 256x256 little images and then applied and aligned...

Do you intend on blocking players climbing the terrain to gain height, if not the polycount will go though the roof...


16th Apr 2000, 01:01 AM
290 polys is a joke, especially on a AMD 350(!)

but the adaptive triangulation looks pretty cool, altho I don't see how it could 1/2 the poly count on the kind of terrain I've built.. still, have to find a copy of Bryce 'somewhere' and see for myself /infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif

16th Apr 2000, 05:19 AM
Very cool stuff...Gamasutra has a very interesting article on this subject you might want to read if you have some time. More of a programmer's read, but a good read all the same:

Chris Robbers
Infiltration Programmer

16th Apr 2000, 07:10 PM
Very cool link Cat thanks very much...

A rivoting read...


[This message has been edited by bastard_o (edited 04-16-2000).]