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making a sea with shader

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hi I'm going to simulate a scene containing a sea alongside some ships, boats and a beach, I thing I I've two options for making the sea, initially I should make a plane, then I can apply the noise effect on this plane in two ways: the first way is to manipulate it through changing the vertex buffer contents (i.e. locking the buffer on each frame, changing the heights, unlocking) and the second wich seems more modernized is using a vertex shader for applying some random effects on the vertices (is there another approach?) which one is better, in terms of performance and the visual effects which I can achieve? do you know any special algorithm for making the sea noises? thanks in advance PowerX engine

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