Terrain demo much extended

March 11, 2010
Terrain 1 Terrain 2
Terrain - wireframe view showing our simple LOD approach Terrain - valley view with a hint of fog

Our procedural terrain demo (see kambi_vrml_game_engine/examples/vrml/terrain in SVN) got a lot of improvements this week:

  • Heterogeneous terrain (idea from Ken Musgrave) implemented, this makes more realistic terrain (smooth valleys, noisy mountains).
  • Terrain is rendered with nice blended texture layers, normals are calculated for fake lighting, fog may be used, all by simple GLSL shader.
  • Simple LOD approach for rendering is used, this is an ultra-dumbed-down version of geometry clipmaps. The way I simplified this is unfortunately painfully visible as LOD "popping" artifacts. But, hey, at least I can view really large terrain.
  • You can test various noise interpolation methods, including Catmull-Rom splines.
  • 2D noise can be blurred, which (may) improve the terrain look.
  • You can switch camera to Walk mode.
  • You can add a heighmap from grayscale image to generated terrain.
  • Rendering uses VBOs for speed.

Finally, the programmers may be interested in my my notes and links about basic terrain generation methods.