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Heightmap without slope?

Hello all! I’m attempting to take a grayscale 16-bit image from one of our graphics guys and turn it into a prototype of a very simple building. The problem I’m having is that even solid straight lines on the .png are translated into a “mountain range” instead of a hard edge. I’m sure there is a way around it, but I haven’t been able to find much. When building from hand, I can get the desired hard edges, but future work will have many small, uniform items that need to be uniform in height as well (think a row of benches, like in some churches). It won’t be for the final product of course. Thanks for the help!

Zoom into your png and look at pixels.
When neighbour is 100% and other pixel 0, you still need a transitionpixel.
Paint it on paper, how you plan to do it.
And then aaaaah you see, for a straight vertical edge you need minimum two edges on same x or y axis, only with difference in z.
Not possible without slope, if you ask me.

Thank you for the help! I haven’t figured out the navigating here yet so I lost where I had posted this initially…

That makes sense, as it’s mostly for landscapes and the natural gradients of land. I’ll look up a bit more on the pixel makeup and talk to them further.

I did have some success by “Flattening” the tops of the sections, it just took some fiddling with the depth/settings.

Your image editor more than likely applies some interpolation and pixel smoothing which may be part of what you end up seeing. You can turn this off in photoshop in order to better preserve the binary sharp edges you are after. Note though - this may not solve the problem depending on how UE handles any number of steps after this point. I don’t know for a fact that you can ever get truly vertical terrain sections, if that’s what you are after then using BSP’s or modeling something in a 3D program will definitely grant you some better control.

Yeah we tried a few more options but they suggested the same (modeling outside UE and importing). It makes more sense and then we’ll have the meshes there for covering later, but I always have to try every idea at least a few times. Thanks for the assistance, guys!

When you have a HM and could use Blender, you could do there exactly, what you tried before in UE, without problems.
Look for displace modifier, but i would suggest to put your hm as BG in Blender, layout a grid, snap to incremental, add plane, add loopcuts to your desired resolution.
Mark faces in edit mode and extrude them.
Make your gridplane not to big, think modular, when it comes to buildings.