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Landscape Tool Improvements in 4.24?

I saw “Landscape Tool Improvements” on the UE4 development roadmap for 4.24. Can anyone from Epic give a little more color there? What can I expect to change? I’m going to be teaching those tools to my high school class later this year and I want to be prepared!!!

I for one hope that includes better ways to use virtual texturing, better instances foliage tools. Better landscape layer painting tools.
I doubt it, but maybe the torello board has some details?

Either way, if you are teaching high school students it might be worth showing them how to use GIS and real world hightmaps to bring a real location into unreal. It’s quite complicated but all the data (real scientific data from usgs) and the program are free to use / open source. It’s a fairly complicated task as well, but bringing in a real map to start sculpting on normally provides a better final result.

We also very much need way to create caves ,the right way, is this being considered,unity has paid plugins but I see nothing for UE4, and no I can’t code well enough to know where to even begin,maybe someday.

For caves you just make a hole in the landscape with the visibility brush, it also disables collision. no code needed. then you just use other meshes / layer another smaller landscape as well if you want.

TY MH for offering assistance as always,but I’ve known about that method for some time and it breaks realism and is clumsy ( IMHO only) , so I will avoid it . Code is the answer but my skills are insufficient , yet anyway.

Unity has an incredible voxel cave designer ( a couple of them if you can afford them ) which is my preference, I can hardly believe no one has tackled it here.

There are some voxel plugins for UE4 on the marketplace. And one was at 90% off a few days ago. You can use those to create a whole map or partially edit it with voxels when needed.

The problem is that for voxel caves you would need also voxel terrain itself. Right now Landscape is heightmap based, which allows it to employ numerous optimization techniques, especially in terms of collision. Having landscape voxel based would mean complete redesign of the landscape system along with introducing quite a few limitations current landscape system doesn’t have. It’s not nearly as simple as “put in voxel caves plz” :slight_smile:

Do we have any #'s for how it would be affected,is it really that bad ? Anyway DarkS474 seems to disagree, you can do partial edits, without affecting default terrain optimization ? I was searching for caves which is a big part of why its a popular so I’ll go back and check on voxel’s .

Thx all

I found a few but not finding any that say you can target smaller areas of terrain( & are we referring to native).

You can create holes as told above in the thread and then edit with voxels to create the caves, adding voxels with a voxel plugin like adding static meshes on a map.

There is this other voxel plugin for UE4 that is not on the marketplace which allows importing/converting to voxels, so your map gets converted: https://voxelplugin.com/

I have seen a few voxel plugins that seem to be on-point for landscape creation, the reason you can’t just change the whole engine to use those is that they don’t work on everything as the current solution does.
The landscape is essentially a static mesh when you publish. Voxels are basically mesh pixels. consider them that way anyway. you have 100 meshes instead of 1 to represent a 1m cube area (way exaggerated). The performance loss is noticeable and it may not even work on lower CPU items such as mobiles.

It would be nice to be able to acess landscape spline inside Blueprint. We can make roads and paths with that tool, but we need to able to acess the spline nodes to use as paths for AI. Right now, we need two splines, the landscape one for visual, and another one for the AI following paths logic.
Or at least one option to export or duplicate to create a separeted spline, saving us time to have to create another spline.

You already can. Just use normal splines with the Editor Apply Spline node.

EDIT: That’s just for deforming the landscape to the spline. It just occurred to me you’re talking about how landscape splines automatically set repeating spline meshes to make roads. You can do that with blueprint splines too! Here’s an old but good short tutorial series that walks you through making a road/path tool for placing repeating spline meshes along a spline. It’s pretty much what landscape splines do, but in a blueprint you can edit. Unreal Engine Spline Road Tool Tutorial - YouTube

It would definitely be nice to see a voxel landscape mode in ue4. I’d also love a tile mode. So far the only answers to those are plugins, which is a shame, since you risk your project getting stuck in old versions of the engine.

Niagara is amazing. Chaos is amazing. Quixel subs for free is amazing. Keep the good stuff coming, Epic! But if you’re looking for the next big engine project, I hope you have your ear to the ground. It’d be really great to see voxel and tile landscape editors. Leveraging those to streamline workflows (no more going to blender or maya for each cave you want), and allowing us to create our own 3d tilesets would be such a huge boon for RPGs and action games.

I know it’s a big ask, and that voxel landscapes aren’t as performant, but it’d be such an amazing addition.

A general performance upgrade on the way the landscape work would be ideal.
Aside from the (little known?) Tessellation bugs eating FPS right from ticking the landscape material tessellation option even while having a multiplier of 0, the way that the layering system works really needs an update.

I’m currently just using 1 to max 3 landscape material and applying custom meshes with details and materials, tessellation, vertex paint, and essentially saving over 50fps over doing the same with the landscape and a more complex material.

I seriously have no idea why this is yet, though I do want to pull and review engine code out of curiosity…
That wont happen until after the jam… (and I’m kinda hoping the new release will avoid me having to go look? :P), but yea. I would say that 60% of my performance issues were landscape material related.