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Burnt_Fyr

Vector Field Height Maps

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I've been thinking about vector fields as of late and was looking for thoughts as to how to implement them for a terrain engine. I'm thinking a 32bit image format, using 3 pixels per vertex of terrain. So a Terrain of 101x101 Verts, would require a image 303x101pixels. The Terrain's vertices would be translated by data in the vector field image to give rise to landscapes not possible with heightmaps. Is this a reasonable approach? Any suggestions/links/leference material?

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The Halo Wars terrain was completely built around a vector field concept.

The two primary problems you have to look out for :
1) To properly use VectorField terrain, you need to increase your resolution significantly (note, this creates all sorts of other problems you need to deal with ;)
2) You need to be extra sensitive about how you're doing your terrain chunk bounds, as now you're allowing the artists to pull verticies into other chunk's AABBs.

A quick google pulled up the slides from the GDC09 talk I did on the subject:
http://tech-artists.org/forum/showthread.php?t=388


~Main

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