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Rendering / Creating Planetary Bodies?!?

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Hello, I was just wondering if anyone knew a framerate-friendly way to render a planet on a VERY large scale. I want to stress very large scale, as in the earth to an astronaut kind of scale. Anyway, what would be the best way to store and render the planet? Any suggestions are welcomed... Thanks, -Jesse

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I have really no idea how to go about this, but I have noticed articles on this at GamaSutra, so check them out:

http://www.gamasutra.com

Cray

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Thanks for the link, I forgot to check there... Yeah, I really don''t have a clue how to do it either, but I suppose that''s why I''m posting, isn''t it?
Anyone else have any other input or articles they found that might help?
Thanks,
-Jesse

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I''ve never done anything like this, but I would guess the best way would be to track the lattitude and longitude of the player so you know which part of the terrain to render. The geometry would be like an octree, but instead of dividing the world into cubes, you divide the spherical planet into slivers.

Lattitude and longitude would be calculated by comparing the player''s position to the planet''s origin. The angles you get are what you want.

~CGameProgrammer( );

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A version of an octree is definatley the best way ... divide each hemisphere into 4. Then work out which sections are visible, and just render them. Also - You only need to store 1/8th of the total geometry - but don''t forget to store all the texture coordinates!

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Well, dividing each hemisphere into four parts (by slicing the sphere with three planes) is only good if the planet is small. For very large ones, you''ll need to slice it into finer pieces. And the number of slivers that should be rendered should be based on the distance above the ground. At ground level, not much can be seen, though high above, you can see more. Very far away from the planet, you can see basically half of it.

All this only really applies to spherical planets, BTW. If you want to do something weird like irregularly shaped planets, it would be more complicated.

~CGameProgrammer( );

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