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Road Painter

Started by TorQueMoD, January 13, 2013, 11:02:16 am

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It cant be implemented the way you see it in that tutorial, for the sole fact that in WM you're not working on 3D meshes, but on heightfields (images).

You could set a tool that draws lines that get applied only as road masks, and only in the rendering phase, by modifying the altitude of the underlying heightmap to build a flat area perpendicular to the road-line axis.
By interpolating the effect, you could decide how accurately the underlying terrain's heights will be followed, so that you can tune how detailed and bumpy the road will be.

Using this method to paint roads, instead of using "layouts", would save us a lot of calculation time and will also result in a much less heavy tool for our CPU.
You could also set the tool to work as a separate "pre-bake it" one: you set the line, check its nodes (freehand-or-bezier option?) and then you "bake" it, which will make it generate a separate definitive mask. If you need to change the road-line, you just do it and then re-bake it, and yet its nodes' height would stay independent from the terrain's features.

Obviously roads would not show up in the "Layout View", but this would just save us CPU calcs and bring no real problems. It would work great with very large areas or roads that would require too many nodes, while you could still use layout generators for short roads or other kinds of elevated paths.

It would also be great if this tool could have a separate "final rendering" button, so that you can first check the whole terrain and lately apply the roads mask. I know you could actually already do it by manipulating the tools chain, but, you know, just for a matter of not doing it every single time you want a selective rendering. ^^

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