Should I use Landscape?

Hi guys, I’m exploring/re-learning unreal in past few weeks or so. And I wonder how using landscape benefits archviz type of work in unreal.

My (limited) current understanding of pros and cons of using landscape in archviz type of work is that:


Landscape has automated LOD’s - I assume not much for archviz as I can just build lower poly objects to pose in distance
can be built using heightmaps from world creator or world machine etc… - this is nice but is more of a workflow issue rather than benefits of using landscape object over static mesh
can be modified straight in unreal(sculpting, roads…) - This is a strong point but unless I need to travel too far in the archviz work I don’t really need it…?


**is always involved in lightmass calculation **- So a large landscape can cause a big hit in lightmass calculation right in the beginning of building a scene
is always a single object - so while I’m aware I can use several landscape objects, I cannot patch together an environment from varying quality of assets/landscapes
no control over lightmass density - I’m not aware if I could control how dense a certain region will be in terms of lightmass resolution and since a terrain is thin geo, it would still be too bright

Is there something I don’t understand here? I like working with landscape in unreal but my current understanding is that this tool is more suitable for large scale games but might provide little benefits for archviz that centers around a specific site? Can I expect trouble if I try to build massive environment (although just low poly as a backdrop) from static meshes?

In other words, I guess I’d like to know if it’s worth it to put up with the problems/cons landscape is giving me or if I can safely ignore that part of unreal and build everything with imported meshes.

Thanks for any answers/help and if anyone experienced can provide some examples on how landscape is superior or maybe the other way around (for archviz purposes) I’m looking forward to see why and how.

PS: I assume that in UE5 this could be easier to answer cause of the great decimator thingy that’s incoming, but as of now I’m confused.

I’m assuming when you say arch viz, you mean something like one or a small number of buildings, probably also interior.

You could just use a limited size landscape under the main part of the level. It’s not enough to cause problems, and then use something like:

For the distance.

You can also use a mesh for the nearby ground, but it’s up to you how your source that.

Pretty much yes, limited space, no distant “traveling”…
Yeah, maybe combining small landscape and distant meshes could work