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Really big worlds?

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Dear community! At the moment I am working on an application that simply let me walk through a world. The world consist of vertices that are generated through a heightmap. No problem with small worlds, but I would like to have a world with theoretical no limitation in size. The problem is, that at some point the world gets too big to be loaded into memory or the loading takes too long. A solution would be to divide the world into zones and everytime you leave a zone the next zone gets loaded. But thats not what I am looking for. So my question: Is there an already existing technique for creating very big "seamless" worlds that is fast and scales well? Best regards and thanks in advance Oliver PS: Please dont blame me for not using the search-function, but I really do not have any clue which terms I should search for.

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Guest Anonymous Poster
research level streaming. several games have used it. including the GTA's, San Andreas used it to best effect though. there is quite a few documents on it out there. the most common method is to have a nice, efficient storage layout, and having a thread dedicated to streaming.

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Thank you very much for your fast answer. Cant wait to read through the docs :)

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Try a look at Hugues Hoppe's webpage, the "Geometry clipmaps: Terrain rendering using nested regular grids" article and the evolution which uses the GPU.

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