About creating detail textures

First of all, please understand that these articles were written through Google Translate.

I’m creating a terrain with a game background used in Unity.
A few minutes ago I created a 100km x 100km terrain with a resolution of 1024px per tile with 20 x 20 tiles.
And I tried use it with 20km x 20km terrain in Unity.
In Unity, one tile is one square kilometer.
The resolution of the texture was made 2048 pixels, unlike the heightmap.
The game needs details from the player’s point of view.
Textures were created with WM’s own functions using Color Device and Selector, not external files. However, when applied to Unity, the texture detail was lacking.
So I am wondering if I should make the texture with a resolution greater than 2048px.
The problem is that the build time and memory usage are too high.
So I ask how others are doing.
Now the map I made took about 20 hours.
To get the desired detail, I should set the per-tile resolution to at least 4096 pixels.
I don’t know how many days it will take if I increase the resolution.
When creating detail textures, to increase the build resolution is the only way?

These are part of the terrain.
It has a 5km x 5km range and plans to use it as a 1km x 1km terrain.
The resolution is 4096 pixels.
However, there are not enough details yet.
Need to increase the number of tiles?
I already have 400 tiles. To increase the resolution, I need to increase it by a factor of 4 at a time. So the number of tiles will be 1600. That’s an absurd number. However, if I set the resolution per tile to 8192 or 16384 pixels, I don’t know how many days it will take to make all 400 tiles. I really don’t know what to do. Whether WM is an application that is not well known in my country, there is also a absurd lack of related materials, but it is not easy to find lectures or materials in other languages ​​because of the language barrier. Any advice please?

Thank you for reading…

Ps. I’ll upload the WM file I created if needed.

Short answer: WM is not made to create such detailed textures, so this won’t work, no matter how much you try.

Long answer: WM is a “macro scale” tool, meaning it’s to be used to create big features in your terrain and the smallest feasible features you can desire to get out of WM, are between 1 - 10 meters, depending on the size of your terrain. Just creating terrain in WM is not enough, you must texture it in some other tool, for example, a game engine. In there, you can place/paint high quality textures on the terrain.

So what can you do with WM in regards to texturing? You can create masks, or better said, guides, for your in game textures. Meaning you create a black and white image that will guide you were to put certain textures (or use it to automatically place textures). This is the point where resolution becomes important, as you want your masks/guides to be of an acceptable resolution. Having a 100×100 m guide isn’t helpful if you want to use the guide to help you texture flow lines that are 5 m in width, and the same goes for river banks and such. So instead of trying to create a diffuse texture in WM, use WM to create general guides for the texturing you’ll be doing inside the game engine.


I kept thinking about it after I wrote it, and I thought so too. But I wasn’t sure. Thank you for your reply. Now I think I know what to do. I’ll create a splat map and try to apply the detail texture in the engine. Thank you.


How do you do this, I’m looking to export the texture directly from WM. From this feature described, it looks like this should be possible then without the need to use a 3rd party system.

Unique World Texture

Modern projects often avoid the repetition of tiled textures and create a unique high resolution material for every point in your world (sometimes called Virtual Texturing or Megatexturing).

Could you clarify what you mean with “this”? What technique/feature are you referring to?

In general, to export greyscale images or bitmaps (images with colour), use the Height Output and Bitmap Output devices respectively.

In the features listed with WM, there’s a section described as “Unique World Texture”. I’m looking to build a Megatexture or in the game engine that we’re using, it’s called a Vista Texture. So, would a Bitmap Output take what textures I see in WM and then I’ll be able to “paste” that onto my terrain in this game engine?

We’ve tried utilizing the different black and white masks; however, this said game engine is limited in the number of different layers making it difficult.

@hinerl01 Yes, you can create a megatexture. Hell, you can create a mega-material (with PBR based layers). Even using outside file textures.

That’s not what this topic was about however, next time please create a new topic when you want to ask an unrelated question. Read on if you need some more details.

Workflow or feature summary, oversimplified

You can import outside files using either “file” generator, or PBR material using “Material” generator (this one is also used to procedurally create a material). For the exports, use a corresponding output node. “Bitmap output” for a single RGB texture, “Height output” for black and white masks, “Material” output for PBR material layers (you can also use bitmap outputs for individual PBR layers, but material output does all that automatically, much faster to set up)

To combine different textures in world machine, you can use either “Combiner”, “Chooser”, or “Layers” nodes (depending on what kind of combination you are trying to achieve). You can create all sorts of megatextures, and even whole GLTF scenes, using World Machine.

Here are some megatextures I created entirely using world machine

Made some threads on the forum itself about some of them. First link is the gallery, the rest are separate forum threads about some of my works:
Gallery! | Portfolio

Snowy mountains redux
Legacy models now available at a reduced price
Forgotten hills
Island project continuation


Thanks for the helpful response. I thought OP could utilize this information as well, as I percieved the topic to be related. And concerning the scale of his project, your own gallery showing it’s possible to obtain such detail. Regardless I’ll remember next time, have a great day!

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@hinerl01 You’re most welcome! Concerning original post though:

The original post is about getting details fit from a “player’s perspective”, closer than 2 meters or thereabouts. A 1:1 megatexture created with wm (where an 8k terrain has a corresponding 8k texture), would produce a detail level of 1m/pixel within a game environment (usually, or at least by default). This megatexture would fail to provide any detail at any camera closer than 200-300m (for an 8km square, 8k resolution terrain and texture, for reference). The higher you go with scale, the more detail you lose. All of my own megatextures would show this problem when used within a game engine (that’s why I’ve packed 8k “weightmaps” with every terrain for assets that ended up as paid products).

The solution to original posters question is given by @HYLK perfectly. For any kind of detail where the camera is closer than 100m from the terrain, you need to build your “Terrain Shader” within your target engine, using weightmaps from world machine. In engine, you can stream a dynamic detail level procedurally, aided with guides you exported from world machine. Best of both worlds. You can still use your megatexture for features about 300m to 500m away from your player. But closer up details are best done procedurally, “In-Engine”.


Ok awesome, this a great explanation as my own understanding was that building a megatexture would suffice. Again, I appreciate the thorough response!

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Just from a bystander’s point-of-view, even an off (original) topic question is helpful - when it generates such helpful replies. My own issue is close-in rendering of figures in the scene where the camera is as close as in an FPS, and the application does not offer procedural textures, or even good, layered shaders. I would look for help in the forums for that app, but I do appreciate the information given here, since part of it would apply to my workflow.


I agree with both you and WFab and it’s more or less a grey area and no real “right or wrong”, but it’s good to always think to yourself whether it’d be better to create a new topic or not. That said, especially for newcomers I think, the bar to create a new topic is higher than for us, old rusty forum lurkers :stuck_out_tongue: