Question about Tiled Build Setup

I’m relatively new to World Machine, I have the professional version and am wanting to create a large open world.

In the Project Settings, in the Scene Setup tab, assume I want to create a 256km^2 world. Even with the highest UE4 landscape option, I’m at 31.49 m/pixel which is obviously not ideal.

I assume the above resolution doesn’t matter when doing a tiled build correct? In the Tiled Build Setup tab, if I set the Tile Resolution to 4033 and Tiles per side to 64 (probably not ideal either but using it for this example), I get back down to 0.99 m/pixel. This is the only value that matters when doing a Tiled Build correct?

I have a couple bonus questions that I may as well ask here. I understand 100.0 Z-scale in Unreal is equal to 512m, if I have in the Project Setup tab 2.048km, I should set Z to 400.0 correct?

Lastly, I can’t see any details when working on any type of large landscape project. Everything just looks like little bumps and I don’t want to export it just to load it in to Unreal and see there’s issues. Is there a workflow to follow to add details to local areas when working on large landscapes?

Ehm this depends? I assume you mean, with the maximum resolution UE4 supports for a single grayscale image, you can only get a detail resolution of 31.49 m/pixel. If so, yes tiled builds can help! Each tile can be separately imported into UE4, effectively bypassing the maximum image size constraint.

No, this is not the only value that matters. When doing a tiled build, you should find a sweet balance between the number of tiles and individual tile resolution as well, as this can influence how efficiently a tile can be rendered, and if you will (or will not) hit your RAM limit. As you don’t need to merge the tile into one single image, you don’t need to worry about needing a lot of RAM for that merge.

I’m not familiar with UE4, but I suppose so yes, in order to keep slopes at the same angle, this is important.

Yes there is! You can create multiple Extents, and give your working Extent a dimension of, let’s say 16×16 Km, allowing you to work on a smaller scale. You will then have to drag your working Extent around to work on other areas.

Thank you, you’ve alleviated a lot of my concerns. I need to do research on the Extents you mention. Appreciate it!

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Hello. May I ask you to explain a little more what you mean by:

  1. " You will then have to drag your working Extent around to work on other areas"?

  2. “You should find a sweet balance between the number of tiles and individual tile resolution as well, as this can influence how efficiently a tile can be rendered”.
    Do you have sense of what that sweet spot is, or how I should think about the ratios of tile # and tile resolution?

My final project will also be a large map, 200km x 200 km for Minecraft, and I think I understand the basic idea of the first part of your post, where you say to make multiple extents, where you can work at a detailed resolution, like less than 10 m/pixel. So how do I understand how extents and tiles relate to each other?

And lastly, if I am building a 200x200 km map (10K x 10K in Minecraft), does anyone have sense of what is the best resolution I should be working at? Should it be 1-2 m/pixel because in Minecraft blocks are 1m cubed, and the player is 2m tall? Or does that really matter? Would anything less than 10 m/pixel work just as well?

Thank you!

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In the Explorer View (press F7), you can move around your Extent.

It is common to have one “main” Extent, with smaller “detail” Extents. The “main” Extent would be your final render Extent, as it comprises your whole world, and therefore it also has a high resolution, let’s say 8K. It is however, on most computers, not feasible to iterate/work on a world at 8K resolution. Your RAM gets eaten up and the build times are too long to be efficient. So that’s where the “detail” Extent comes into play. Using it, you zoom in on a smaller area, work with a lower resolution, let’s say 2K, and therefore can iterate much faster. But, as the name “detail” implies, you won’t be seeing your whole terrain any more, so you must move it around to get to other parts of your world.

Sadly I don’t. It depends on your computer’s capabilities and the desired output resolution. I always strive to go with the largest tiles possible. Often, the reason to go with a tiled render are RAM constraints. So a good rule of thumb, I guess, is to have one tile take up just shy of your full amount RAM. That way you are reducing the number of tiles to render, but are avoiding the performance degradation caused by paging (when you run out of RAM and WM starts writing cache data to your drive).

I hope this answers your questions, if not, please let me know!