Game engines that easily allow caves and overhangs?

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tvvladimir 101 Aug 03, 2011 at 06:49

Hello,

I have created a topic before asking about game engines that allow voxel terrains. It appeared that there aren’t many. Well, what about game engines that can create caves and overhangs easily and are available for indie developers? Are there any? All i want is to create very large terrain with vegetation, rocks and big amount of overhangs and caves.

Thanks for your answers upfront!:happy:

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Tottel 101 Aug 03, 2011 at 14:14

C4 Engine. You can probably see an add in the top right corner of this page. :)

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tvvladimir 101 Aug 03, 2011 at 18:29

But anything else aside from C4 engine?

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Reedbeta 167 Aug 03, 2011 at 18:37

If you’re modeling the geometry as opposed to using a heightfield, then any engine should be able to do it. It’s just differently shaped environment geometry, that’s all.

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tvvladimir 101 Aug 03, 2011 at 18:56

But from what I see I can’t make a cave in just any engine that easily, there r no options in atleast the engines I’ve checked: torque, unity, and so on… So what do you mean take any engine?

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Tottel 101 Aug 03, 2011 at 19:19

What he means is:

You’re looking for an engine that natively allows you to create cliffs and caves as part of the terrain. Some engines have this feature (voxel terrain), but most engines still use a heightmap-based technique.

So, if you want a cave in most game engines, you model it in a 3rd party modelling program (3ds max, blender, ..), and then you import this into your engine and place it on/in the terrain.
If you wouldn’t mind using this last method, I would suggest you look up “modular” modelling, to save you a lot of time.

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alphadog 101 Aug 03, 2011 at 19:59

A heightmap for the surface, a mesh for the overhang and a portal that allows you to access the inside of the cave. That’s how most games navigate the fact that they don’t have volumetric terrain in most engines. C4 does have volumetric terrain.

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Stingray 101 Aug 22, 2011 at 21:56

Wouldnt Unreal be good for this since you “Carve” out the enviroment? I maybe out in left field though LOL.

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Artur 103 Aug 23, 2011 at 00:37

Why is this so hard to do, why couldn’t a terrain tool allow for sculptris like tessellation and maybe a simple retopo tool to clean up the mesh/terrain.

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alphadog 101 Aug 23, 2011 at 18:42

@Artur

Why is this so hard to do, why couldn’t a terrain tool allow for sculptris like tessellation and maybe a simple retopo tool to clean up the mesh/terrain.

Because, most commonly, terrain in 3D games are handled as a flat mesh to which a heightmap is applied. A single heightmap does not allow you to specify caves, overhangs, or other similar structures.

You can use multiple heightmaps, if your engine knows how to work with them. To simplify, one map bumps “up and down” and the next ones bumps “out/in”. These maps are relatively trickier to generate or work with.

Depending on the game world, you can model the whole terrain, or you can model certain parts of it and “overlay” it with your heightmapped terrain.

Rarer techniques are voxel-based engines or procedural/higher-order surfaces based engines. But, those are not common.

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rouncer 104 Aug 24, 2011 at 00:32

Artur, its a pain overcomplicating things.

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tvvladimir 101 Aug 24, 2011 at 07:02

You mention “procedural/higher-order surfaces based engines”. Can you state what are these engines? I’d like to give it a try. But only thoese engines that are available for the public.