Landscape, without smoothing

I have taken a look at the landscape tool… it smoothes everything… I want an unsmoothed landscape.

To make it look like this:


Can it be or should I just use a static mesh instead?

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Yes it should be possible -> just play around with the landscape settings


Section Size: 7x7
Sections per Comp: 2x2
Brush Falloff: 0


That’s low poly but still smooth shaded.

I’d probably go for a static mesh but if you really want to use landscape you can manually calculate flat shaded normals in the material by using ddx and ddy of the world position:


Yeah, I played around with the suggestion made, didn’t look as I wanted. (Suggestions appreciated though)

I don’t really want to use landscape. I just thought it might be best, performance etc. Landscape can do LOD on parts of itself… a static mesh would be… well… since you’d be on it the entire time, there would be no LOD changes. Then again, it is a LOPO landscape I want, so it might not be an issue at all.

Well, use what suits your workflow best then. Just keep in mind that a static mesh with all hard edges has a significantly higher vertex count.
The good thing about the material setup above is that it looks flat shaded but has the same vertex count as a smooth shaded mesh.

I’m not entirely sure about having a higher vertex count. Even when you go pretty aggressive on a landscape and getting the vertex count down on that it still looks fairly complex when looking at the wireframe. Far more faces than what I am going for in my landscape.

But, I would like to try you model though… I just can’t find the “Absolute World Position” node in the editor. The other 3 no problem.

The node is called WorldPosition (Coordinates sub-menu).

As for the vertex count I was not comparing lanscapes to static meshes, but smooth shaded to flat shaded meshes in general. You can use that material with static meshes as well.

Hard edges create more vertex count because of the split normals rather than averaged normals which is why sometimes you will see Tri count of some static meshes are usually 2-3x the amount of the ‘face count’. Which is why something like this as a SM will have quite a count over doing it the shader way.

There is still stuff I need to learn about 3D… I don’t have my head around normals and UVs yet… and I fear for what comes after that :slight_smile:

I’ll take a look at landscape again, couldn’t get it to work with that shader thing it seemed. But I ran into trouble with placing foliage, so landscape seems more like the right choice. Things tend to snap to a landscape when placing stuff… it doesn’t snap to a static mesh :slight_smile:

I had used the wrong cross node, and didn’t get the blocky look.
So now I have it working.

I’m playing around with it now

I get terrible terrible LOD morphing when I turn down the landscape resolution. And when I turn it up, the faces get too small.

Should I use a higher resolution landscape, and scale that up? Any downsides to that approach?

Just wanted to post a slight improvement to the material that fixes some lighting issues, for anyone that stumbles across this thread:


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You should just uncheck ‘Tangent Space Normal’ in the material properties. This is basically the same and cheaper.

You’re right, that works too, I’ll use that. The revised version:


Thanks to all of you!
A very usefull Trick.

I love the search function on this Forum! :slight_smile:

Is there a way to change the distance at which the terrain detail is reduced? I’m getting a very ugly morphing effect.

Edit: Never mind, I figured it out.

How did you fix it? I’m getting a bad shading issue. The lighting looks really dark on some polys that are kind of steep, It looks really bad.

I know this is some serious thread necromancy but WHAT?

As you can see from the screenshot my game is “low-poly”, with no smoothing

Are you saying that it’s harder on the GPU than if it was smoothed? Wow holy ****



no, but a 5,000-triangle mesh with no smoothing will be more expensive to render than an all-smoothed 5,000 triangle mesh due to the way vertices are duplicated during a smoothing group / hard edge split. because in a regular smoothing pipeline every mesh is technically entirely averaged among all vertices in an element - smoothing ‘splits’ are created by actually splitting the meshes at every hard edge thereby disrupting the averaging process. the splitting of the meshes at those points effectively double the vertex count at each of those splitting locations as those edges can no longer share the same vertices with each other (because then their normals would be averaged), and by conceptual extension - if every triangle had its own smoothing group, every vertex would be duplicated, making a mesh with a no-smoothing style via SM be much more expensive on the GPU than a normally smoothed mesh. 2-3x the vertex count, in fact… Wow holy **** indeed

Is there a way to archieve this without using DDX and DDY, meaning: make it for mobile?

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