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Dalek

3D tiled terrain

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With regards to terrain for an ISO style RPG - i've been thinking about different ways of implementing a detailed world, and of course have looked at (not implemented yet) many of the terrain generation methods available. I'm really keen to have a reasonably detailed world, including overhangs and caves etc. So I am envisaging a terrain made of 3D building blocks, or tiles, with reasonably small level sizes to minimize memory requirements. Can anyone offer any advice as to perhaps the best method for rendering a map like this, i.e. occlusion methods etc? Thanks.

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So you want to create a 3D world out of small boxes. Maybe you can use the same algorithm that was used in the game 'Descent'.
You would be drawing the blocks in a certain distance from back to front.

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Yeah, small 3D boxes (they would be meshes). I suppose the most recent game I can think of that uses a methodology like this is Neverwinter Nights (although I am not quite up to trying to recreate that on my own!).

Its been a long time since I played descent - may have to have a look at it again! Thanks for the suggestion though.

Also - when rendering these blocks - each block would be represented internally as a model object - it would also store a handle to its texture. Now as I understand it, it is best to try and batch your objects by texture - what would be the best way of doing this?? Using an integer identifier for the texture to base the sort on? Or perhaps sorting the objects by the address of the texture?? Not really sure on that one...

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Descent is a portal engine, it doens't do outdoor environments too well
better for first person shooter indoors stuff

it sounds to me, like what he means by Boxes, is that the world is partitioned into a giant 3d grid of cubes
and there is a small set of cube tiles that can be re arranged in this grid to create stuff
kinda like Lego blocks


if your building blocks are regular size so they do use a grid, then you probably want quadtrees or octtrees to sort out which ones are visible or not

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Guest Anonymous Poster
Quote:

it sounds to me, like what he means by Boxes, is that the world is partitioned into a giant 3d grid of cubes
and there is a small set of cube tiles that can be re arranged in this grid to create stuff
kinda like Lego blocks

Yes - thats right. I wish I had thought of the lego block analogy!

Thanks for that comments on textures nmi - thats a good idea. :)

And octrees/quadtrees - excellent.

Cheers!

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