My Landscape/Enviroment wip (heavenly inspired by The Witcher 3 demo videos)


I’m .

First i want to say thank you to Epic Games, there engine and to all of you here at the forum, sharing so much knowlege!

English is not my native language so please bear with me.

Some time ago i started with UDK and after some time i moved to cryengine. As i started with UDK i knew nothing about modeling assets or make textures but i was allways interessted how games are be made.
I never ended a project.
I think i made my first crappy textures as i played Mechwarrior Online. I saw endless FanArt in the forum there and wanted to do something too.

So i dug the internet and made some weeks later my first set of custom textures as fanart and posted them in the forum. I used UDK to display the mech’s with customtexture.
I dont know if i can post them here to? You can find some of my work in my twitter gallery to.

After some days, and the lack of new maps i decided to dug into the cryengine. I posted my littl project on the forum and a hot discussion was born. After some days of work on the “custommap” there was a post somewhere
in the forum and it was said that community made stuff will never be in the game because the community can’t hit the developers quality requierments. Because of that i stoped my little project.

This is the custom map an the last thing i did for the last 1,5 years.

Some weeks ago i was hit bye the fever again but this time with unreal engine 4 and it feels good. This time i want to dig deeper and have started a new little project. Maybe this project is to big but
a want to do something that i can show.

Some days ago i saw a 35 minute gameplay from The Witcher 3 and because i can see so much assets from the game i decided to build some of the assets.
This is the point i will start at and will follow the video and try to build the assets is see. Maybe i need a year for 10 meters, maybe not. Time will tell :wink:

While i’m on the building i plan to show some of my workflow.

First i need something i can greybox and paint on top. I started with Worldmaschine and a 4k Map in Unreal.

World Maschine 2, painted the heightmap in ps to get a angle like in the gameplay video from the witcher.

Inside Unreal… looks god but i think 4k is maybe to much.

Early Landscape Material… tomorow i try to find a way to use the big texture from Worldmaschine as a layer for color information and variation.

Thats all for today :wink:

Will be interesting to see what you will end up with. Keep us updated! :slight_smile:

Will do :slight_smile:

Not much done today in unreal. Spend some hours in collecting references. Scaled the map down to 2k, added a noisemap to the landscape material. This will effect the detail textures too and break tiling a bit. Sculp’d the landscape at the place where the town/habor will be. Same time i extracted some meshes with normals from worldmaschine. Will use them as vista meshes and as cliff faces.

This is very cool :smiley:
nice work and will be waiting for the rest :slight_smile:

Daily screenshot… blocked out some big shapes but working with bsp is not my favorite. Maybe i will do some simple modular assets for greyboxing tomorow.

That looks scaled down for 4km, just the mountains would be 4km+ and the field even more.


I don’t know exactly what you mean. What I meant was : I think 4k is much to big to populate with assets for 1 person ;).

Today i worked on landscape material. I like the way cryengine handel it so i took al look at epics stylised demo material. First i was scared of it but i played with the notes and after a while i understand it better.
So i started to bend it to my needs, integrated textures, normals and noisemaps.
As i played i thinked about foliage placing based on layers. I’m now able to place bushes, little trees rock pepples and so on randomly through random noisemaps on top of the textures.

This might be not much the most here but for me its a giant leap with unreal engine :wink:

All painted with one big brush.

This is a picture placing foliage and rocks on the trail layer. Downside is if i paint or alter the map with sculpting the foliage/rocks dont change.

And the material, based on epic’s sylised material

True but you don’t need to populate areas that are not reachable by the player. Scaling down the terrain will make it look weird proportionally.

Ah ok. Now i see your point. Your are right. I scaled it down to 2k and it looks not good as in 4k, the dimension feels wrong. The other problem is: build lighning for 4k is … :).

If I may have word of advice.

I wouldn’t focus on looks or materials at this point. You have set yourself to monumental task (4k terrain!). That terrain must somehow populated. With things. Lots of things.

I would start from researching how to populate this area with minimum effort. Creating procedural blueprints which will automatically spawn assets and how to create content to make procedural world possible.

I can tell from experience. If you are planing to populate it by hand… You will quickly burn out and throw it all to hell (;.

For this big level, you don’t want to use lightmaps. Really. Even Daniel Wright in one thread advised against it ;p.
Even if you manage to build it. Lightmaps will eat obscene amount of memory, while loading.

My 4x smaller level, with lightmaps build, is about 500MB. And it’s not even 1/4 finished.

He can still use a 4km terrain and focus only in the playable area, leave the background stuff for later.

Thx for the heads up! Much appreciated!

Started the procedural thing with the material already but the material is complicated. Is there a way to trow a material in the material?

For example. Can i use a rock material with diff speec normal ao in my terrainmaterial or must i do it with layerblends for normal speec and so on? Would be nice if i could trow a ready material in.

Was able to get some thing of texture blending in distance running. Quiet happy with the texture for now.

Made the switch to dynamic GI. My foliage (now with tangent space normal) works nice with it. Added a fresnel to foliage material, used near the same values as the fresnel for landscape mat. Looks nice in distance but gave me a 5-10 fps decrease.
Map is back to 4k again ;).

So you apply foliage depending on the landscape layer right but it doesn’t update if you draw? Either way, nice job. :slight_smile:

Thx, the foliage keep updating with sculpting terrain but sadly not with associated layers. Yes, i set the foliage to paint only on specific layers. For example: I have set up 3 different rough noise maps above in different extra layers. On this way i can place things like little rocks, bushes or smal trees randomly.

One screen more for today :).

The grass meshes look very nice! I also like the bright and saturated colors (in the foreground^^) :slight_smile: Keep us posted.


It looks cool- though I don’t quite understand, can you explain what you mean by that? You mean you are blending a different set of textures with the landscape based on distance?

Thank you.

Yes :). My starting point for this is realy simple atm (mostly added some things to the stylised demo material) but you can use this too to fake details like lakes or forests. There are much, much more things you can do with it.
I use a big tex from wm2 but i think you can use another set of detail textures to fake things like grass or bushes or use a panning texture to fake wind sweeping along the fields. Arrrr… endlees possibilities :slight_smile: