So I looked at how EG did level streaming in boy-kite and for some of it makes sense (overall it’s mind-blowingly complicated and i wished there was some kind of step-by-step breakdown of how the whole thing is built; the youtube videos EG posted just cover a lot of theory about the assets they made, and don’t really give a tutorial on how they actually put all of it together). For example, I see there’s a “cave” section, and since you can’t see any the internals from the outside, it seems they just used SM assets (boulders, etc) to stitch the cave opening with the interior level, and none of it gets rendered until you actually get near the cave.
What I’m not clear on is: does that same concept work for a single, large continuous landscape? Case in point, I imported a single large non-tiled heightmap which I then tile by selecting sections of the landscape and moving them to separate levels. From a resource management, that part makes sense because I can do foliage, lighting, etc. all within a level by itself, though I’m not sure how to handle things like sky lighting and such that i would assume to put on the top persistent level. Do they overlap? Looking at the cave interior in kite, all the lighting is interior and you can see there’s no sky light and looking through any openings you just get black space. But I don’t want to double up on exterior lighting, or have the sky sphere appear twice, etc.
Also, does streaming distance control the loading of the different landscape sections, like how LOD controls the resource usage by loading in lower-quality versions at far distances? and if there’s something that would be visible by line-of-sight but is farther away than streaming distance, does that mean it won’t be visible? For example, if i place trees really far away but on landscape that’s in the same level, I see billboards, even though the trees are like 10km away (because i have the foliage cull distance disabled). if those trees were on a separate level and were further away than the streaming distance, would they just not appear, and then “pop” into view as I approached the level bounds?
Basically I’m looking for tips, info, and/or explanations for how level streaming works with continuous landscape.