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Megatexture 'proof of concept'


channie

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Some guys at Doom 3 World managed to get a megatextured terrain working in doom 3.

This kind of 'proof of concept' has a few drawbacks a 3d rendering-oriented programmer spotted :

- The diffuse map resolution is way too low comparing to QW screenies

- The fragment program just add a LOD on the megatexture chunks

- It seems a single diffuse map cannot get all the details we've seen on various QW screenshots, so is there a detail map or such to be added on top ?

- How is handled the LOD since using it impacts a lot on general performance (all the lods must be loaded on gfx cards to be handled by fragment program...)

So far, the workflow seems very smooth :

- create a 32k x 32k plane with any 3d modeling package

- apply a heightmap (from worldmachine or terragen) as a displacement modifier

- export the model to a .lwo or .ase

- fix material name of the exported model

- create the associated shader :


megatexture/mon_terrain

{

qer_editorimage megatextures\mon_terrain_editeur.tga

{

blend filter

megaTexture mon_terrain.mega

}

{

map _white

blend diffusemap

}

}

- There you go :)

Feel free to play around with this and post your results :)

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hey satan :)

yeah, RR2 gave some insights on getting proper shadows on the terrain, that was very appreciated :)

All the infos I gathered come from various previews on websites, infos on splash damage forums, among others.

The goal is to provide a comprehensive level design guide, a way to create a decent QW map from scratch, with balance in mind, so I talk about several conception topics including the main objectives design, secondary ones, routes, layout, covers, and more.

Once the SDK is released, I'll continue to write posts about technics, workflow, optimisation, iterative building, testing and marketing after release...

The guide, once properly revised, will be translated in various languages.

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so when you are talking of "proof of concept", what is so special about it?!

you can have a 32k² mesh in pretty much every game nowadays (i guess so?) with multiple texture layers... the only interesting sentence i read in the various interviews is that you can have one diffuse map (and height?) @ 32k². but this on artistic side not very handy. and if it is just 32² times a 1024² texture with some variation, you can have this by standard methods (repeating a texture and blending others "in" by with vertex colors, alpha layer, layer masks, ...).

so what is so special about mega texture?!

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I've read the diffuse map is generated by the QW editing tools.

The main advantage is the artist is free to add gfx details (blasts, vehicles tracks, ...) on parts of the map that'll be walked over by players. No more blending by shaders, so you can basically do whatever you want by painting over :)

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I don't understand why they are trying to emphasize this 'megatexture' technology as the concept been around for years (read: Battlefield 1942). Instead of layers, as with Hammer, it's a single diffuse where if wanted, you could paint the entire thing in Photoshop. It's a LOT easier and let's you do what you please as far as terrain details go. Hell, if one wanted too, you could start creating a level right this very second. Sure, you will be limited to terrain generation, but that's the main point. Think of it as Terragen while being able to actually paint it. I just hope it isn't object oriented where you can only place things (like Battlefield as well), or model and import them instead of brush work, 'cause brush-work > all. :-D However, if this megatexture technology branches out towards the actual architecture, then I'll tip my hat to that.

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I don't understand why they are trying to emphasize this 'megatexture' technology as the concept been around for years

its a selling point.

Exactly. Because when you're making a PC game for snobby PC gamers, you have to come up with a few technology-related bullet-points to put on the box, regardless of how much of a breakthrough they really are. Because graphics are important and spouting off the latest rendering buzzwords to fellow geeks earns you cool points.

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Well I realize it's a selling point, but nearly every modder should realize such 'technology' has been around for years. Hell, I wouldn't even consider it a technology. In all honesty it's a lot easier on the engine and is hardly a breakthrough, as it only has to deal with a single diffuse. Now procedurally generating a realistic environment is a breakthrough...

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haha good one zacker :-D

well as far as i am aware the megatexturing technology is indeed new (at least the way it is being used). its one big texture that is being streamed in and out of memory. it doesnt load the whole texture at once. afaik what battlefield does is using a "lowres" texture for creating unique shades on the terrain so it looks completly unique on a distance and if you get closer it just uses tiled textures layered on that. thats only a guess tho.

seriously tho i really think its only a selling point. megatexturing will start to be really interesting as soon as you can use it on all surfaces.

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haha good one zacker :-D

well as far as i am aware the megatexturing technology is indeed new (at least the way it is being used). its one big texture that is being streamed in and out of memory. it doesnt load the whole texture at once. afaik what battlefield does is using a "lowres" texture for creating unique shades on the terrain so it looks completly unique on a distance and if you get closer it just uses tiled textures layered on that. thats only a guess tho.

seriously tho i really think its only a selling point. megatexturing will start to be really interesting as soon as you can use it on all surfaces.

Isnt that what I saw in a presentation bij the splash damage devs? I'm pretty sure I saw them putting all the textures in one materials and laying uv's on that (terrain, building props, everything). No more worrying about uv space, you can now lay them out in a way thats way easier to work with etc.. I personally cant wait to work this way, it all sounded incredibly revolutionary!

I also saw a wip map by a splash damage dev who was making props with unique textures on every surface, so he was just baking in his lighting and everything, because texture space doesnt matter anymore anyways with megatextureing (to some extent ofcourse).

Very interesting stuff for the future :), I really hope this isnt my imagination because the quake wars engine is the one i'm looking out most for.

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