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id's "MegaTexture"

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Hi, I saw an upcoming game "Quake Wars" is using the "MegaTexture" technology. They somehow use 1 gigantic texture to cover the entire landscape. Of course, an ordinary bitmap wouldn't work. Even a 4096 x 4096 bitmap isn't really detailed (unless the terrain is very small) and already takes many memory. So my question is, does somebody know how they do this? Letting a shader generate detailed stuff based on much smaller texture(s) maybe? Greetings, Rick

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Original post by spek
Hi,

I saw an upcoming game "Quake Wars" is using the "MegaTexture" technology. They somehow use 1 gigantic texture to cover the entire landscape. Of course, an ordinary bitmap wouldn't work. Even a 4096 x 4096 bitmap isn't really detailed (unless the terrain is very small) and already takes many memory. So my question is, does somebody know how they do this? Letting a shader generate detailed stuff based on much smaller texture(s) maybe?

Greetings,
Rick


This is just a guess from what I've seen so the following may be horribly wrong :p

Firstly, I think they do use one huge texture for the landscape. Probably generated procedurally and then touched up by an artist. This texture probably also stores some internal mipmaps of it self.

Now what I think happens is something similar to how geometry clipmaps or texture clipmaps work.

Basically he would load multiple textures at different detail levels. So for example, the square around the player would get the highest detail texture (mip level) and the squares around that square would get lower detail textures. Each of these textures would probably be the same size (1024x1024 for example).

Now when the player moves the texture would be scrolled and a small part of it updated (edges when needed, could have something like an extra boundary area).

So basically he could have very high detail with just 4/5/6 textures that are updated and streamed off the HD as necessary.

How he hopes to apply it to all geometry I have no clue. Again the above may be way off, someone please correct me if it is.

HTH

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I've read some stuff on people who are poking around with the recent Doom3 SDKs, which includes a slightly functional version of megatexture, and apparently they're able to do things like 'draw' roads onto the landscape. It's entirely possible that it's a semi-procedural texture, where it's heavily artist influenced, but still some procedural touchups or something.

Also, Carmack has said that it's not clipmaps, but in the same breath he also said that he's not that familiar with that bit of research, so maybe it is and maybe it isn't.

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It also gets a quick mention in EDGE Magazine...

Quote:
...a single 32,000 x 32,000-pixel image that's mapped over the entire geometric landscape, the megatexture can be rendered in parts rather than as a whole, reducing it's memory footprint to a remarkably small 8mb of video RAM.

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This topic is 4305 days old which is more than the 365 day threshold we allow for new replies. Please post a new topic.

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