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SoaringTortoise

Cliff face tragedy

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I''m going through the tedious process of refining my terrain render''s cliff face generation. At present I''m just using cubes attached to the terrain VB to show that the terrain can handle cliff faces. Now, I don''t want to hard code the cliff characteristics (e.g. indoors, they''re walls instead of cliffs. By the beach, they are chalk cliffs. On mountains they are granite. Apart from the texture differences, the actual geometry will also change), but I can''t think of a simple way to externalise the cliff characteristics. Let me explain: A cliff face is drawn between two significantly displaced heights in the height field. However, it is the nature of a height-field that the two points may not always be exactly the same vertical distance apart. This disqualifies using a simple mesh - there would be no way to make sure that there are no gaps between the mesh and the terrain (unless I force the height difference to always be exactly the same, but that introduces regularity, which is a bad thing). If there was a way to somehow tag individual vertices in a mesh to say, "This points must be welded to the top-left vertex of the terrain," that would be great, but I don''t see a way to achieve that. Another way is to hard-code several algorythms for generating cliff faces depending on a cliff type parameter. This is immensely tedious and makes me, a coder, responsible for the artwork. The only other way I can think of is to create a custom cliff-face object editor, which would allow the artists to create their own cliffs and save them in a proprietary format. My issue with this is that it''s a heck of a lot of work to create a mesh editor. Did I miss anything?

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