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Level Design Terrain: A Quick Start Checklist

DingBat

Grizzled Veteran
Nov 21, 2005
751
0
Hi,

I posted this on the AfterHourz forums a while back.

We didn't include a terrain tutorial in the SDK because it's pretty much a general UEd thing and there are other tut's available. That said, I'm constantly forgetting how to add terrain, so I keep this little check list around. It might help you guys here as well.

<Clipped from AfterHourz forums>

As a follow up, here's what I do to quickly add terrain:

1. Subtract a world cube (more duh, eh?)
2. Add a zoneinfo actor.
3. Set it's bTerrainZone property to True in the ZoneInfo group
4. Open the terrain editor dialog.
5. Click on the little button with the blank page icon down in the lower left corner.
6. Fill in the following:

Package: myLevel
Group: Terrain
Name: heightmap
xsize: 256
ysize: 256
height: 128

hit ok

7. Find a texture to use as the base for your terrain. Select it.
8. Back in the terrain dialog, go to the Layers tab. Select the first undefined layer and hit "New". Fill in the following:

Package: myLevel
Group: Terrain
Name: Base

Click on the AlphaFill property, click on the '...' and select pure white.
Hit ok

9. Now, select "Select" in the Tools list and then go to the "Misc" tab up top.
In the Misc tab enter:

Steps: 1
Strength: 50
Check "Use entire Heightmap"
Then hit Build.

You should now see the terrain with some random levels in it. Rebuild and save the level and off you go.

</Clipped>

Hope this helps.
 
One thing which I've found that saves on a lot of time is creating a "starter map" with the following:

* Large subtracted cube
* Several Terrain Actors (in various sizes - 128x128, 64x64, 256x256)
* Sunlight Actor
* ZoneInfo Actor
* Skybox with fogring and Skydome
* ROLevelInfo Actor

These are all things needed in pretty much every RO map, so I just have a starter map with these already set to go. That way, I don't have to repeat the basic process every time I start a new map.
 
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DingBat

Grizzled Veteran
Nov 21, 2005
751
0
WickedPenguin said:
One thing which I've found that saves on a lot of time is creating a "starter map" with the following:

* Large subtracted cube
* Several Terrain Actors (in various sizes - 128x128, 64x64, 256x256)
* Sunlight Actor
* ZoneInfo Actor
* Skybox with fogring and Skydome
* ROLevelInfo Actor

These are all things needed in pretty much every RO map, so I just have a starter map with these already set to go. That way, I don't have to repeat the basic process every time I start a new map.

I do the same thing. Which is why I'm always forgetting how to set up terrain. :)
 
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Divinehammer

Grizzled Veteran
Mar 9, 2006
1,397
6
Sunny, Obamalot
WickedPenguin said:
One thing which I've found that saves on a lot of time is creating a "starter map" with the following:

* Large subtracted cube
* Several Terrain Actors (in various sizes - 128x128, 64x64, 256x256)
* Sunlight Actor
* ZoneInfo Actor
* Skybox with fogring and Skydome
* ROLevelInfo Actor

These are all things needed in pretty much every RO map, so I just have a starter map with these already set to go. That way, I don't have to repeat the basic process every time I start a new map.

It would be awesome if you posted a template like this somewhere. I suggest Map orchestra but just somewhere we can all get it that would boost the community I think.
 
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Elton

Grizzled Veteran
Apr 5, 2006
113
5
Divinehammer said:
It would be awesome if you posted a template like this somewhere. I suggest Map orchestra but just somewhere we can all get it that would boost the community I think.

I second that proposal!

BTW: Jason Busby's Mastering Unreal Technology : The Art of Level Design is a great book for the modders library
 
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DeV

Grizzled Veteran
Nov 21, 2005
636
2
36
Netherlands
Divinehammer said:
It would be awesome if you posted a template like this somewhere. I suggest Map orchestra but just somewhere we can all get it that would boost the community I think.

Elton said:
I second that proposal!

BTW: Jason Busby's Mastering Unreal Technology : The Art of Level Design is a great book for the modders library

I'd say make the template map and post it somewhere..

BTW: The book is a nice read indeed.
 
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DingBat

Grizzled Veteran
Nov 21, 2005
751
0
I tend to make my world cube at least 64000 uu's. Btw, it's best to think in terms of "power of 2" lengths to avoid running into issues when it comes to UEd.

It actually doesn't matter if your terrain doesn't fill your world cube. The players won't notice it. In fact, you should remove any terrain the players can't see to reduce the performance load.
 
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Chernuk

Grizzled Veteran
Apr 29, 2006
161
0
Sorry, I misunderstood what you were asking.

You want to use the Visibility tool in the terrain editor. Its the 7th one from the top. CTRL+LMB and CRTL+RMB makes the terrain appear and disappear (or vice versa). I find it best to use this tool in wireframe mode.

After removing a portion of the terrains visibility and you want to have a smooth edge, try using the edge turning tool.
 
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Crube

Grizzled Veteran
Mar 20, 2006
56
0
BobCobb said:
Yea, but it deletes the entire base_layer, not what I want. I was asking how to delete the portions of the terrain that will not be seen and do not need to be rendered, for performance reasons. Take a look at arad, theres nothing in those thar trees.

That's the visiblity tool in the terrain editing menu. You can basically cut holes in the terrain with it.
 
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