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Making better use out of texturing parameters.

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I was getting a little sick of having textured ground that really didn''t have any "texture" to it, and I figured that displacement mapping wasn''t really an option at present. Then I stopped and said "hey, wait a second". I''m already using texture weights for blending purposes; why not use those same weights to do a little surface displacement as well? I''ve been tweaking the results for a while now, and I finally achieved a definite improvement in the overall appearance of the ground: I weight the textures in the vertex shader; if the shader determines that a particular vertex will use the rock texture (through a noise filter), it also displaces the vertex by 1/2 a unit in the y direction (up for rocks, down for dirt). The end result is that, instead of just having pieces of rock texture showing through the ground, you have actual rocks sticking out. It''s an easy way to add extra detail geometry to the ground without actually drawing small rock meshes. Collision detection isn''t an issue, because the coordinates aren''t displaced enough to have any impact in that regard.

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