Speedtree Wind (Your feedback please!)

What’s your experience using Speedtrees and their wind representation in the Speedtree modeler versus that in Unreal Engine?
Mine is not so good.

  • Setting up wind in the Speedtree modeler is fairly straightforward and looks good (even though the presets on offer don’t always translate to a authentic 1 on 1 experience).
  • I find the controls of the wind gizmo in the ue editor to be clunky. Often I am tweaking for a 0.001 decimal in order to not get incredible World Position offsets from gusts or breezes.
  • Setting wind to good/best etc. in the material seems to matter very little if anything.
  • There seems to be a ‘warmup’ stage or something involved when rendering out via Matinee. Wind needs to kick in and before it does, you’re already in 10 seconds.

Compared to Pivot Painter wind/Manual WPO wind or even a simple grass wind applied via your material, it seems like a very lackluster feature.
In the end I just made my own WPO wind, offering me more control, no delays and a perfect match between editor and rendered output.

Am I doing something wrong?
Very curious to hear about other users their results!

My experience is trees in UE are not performing well as in speedtree modeler.

  1. I don’t know why but wind force and speed seems to have less effects than in speedtree modeler. Adjusting the wind takes more time.

2.In UE, wind blows branches off trunk sometimes when wind speed is high. So for me, it is hard to make strong wind scene. But in speedtree modeler, it works as it should do.

Another thing bothers me is that speedtree modeler seems to have better translucency filter, trees always look better in speedtree modeler than in UE4. When I apply wind in speedtree, it looks nice but when I apply wind in UE4, weaving leafs look horrible.
I tried to use different mipmap settings like no mip or sharp level 10, none of them look like what speedtree does.

Have you folks considered reporting this to SpeedTree and on AnswerHub ?

Any videos showing Modeler and UE4 so that the difference and issues are clearly visible ?

I’ve reported things like this in the past.
Typical answers are :1) Nothing 2) You have to contact IDV 3) You have to contact Epic
I’ll try again if we first firmly establish that indeed this is an issue experienced by everyone and not caused by improper usage.

That sucks :frowning: I am aiming for SpeedTree and wind for my scene on mobile, but now not only I am not sure if it will perform well on mobile, but if it will even work at all :frowning:

Keep in mind, speedtree packs wind masks into extra UV channels which are still quite useful for any custom WPO solution - there’s a height gradient, stuff for phase offset, etc. For mobile I would think you could eliminate the channels you don’t need and come up with some very basic WPO math to drive things.

I’ve also encountered a lot of these issues, but my main gripe is with the quality of animation on leaves (of just about any type). Ideally, I would like to see leaf cards rotate around the point they’re branching from, as opposed to them being sheared / skewed in 4-5 different ways. No doubt you can make more natural looking shear effects in your own material. On Epic’s part, they just need to fix the wind actor so that it spits out proper values into the material function…

Lastly, and as long as we’re in the rendering section, I wish speedtree would support baking depth maps on billboard atlases…

Yeah for mobile you could probably just use something like the ‘SimpleGrassWind’ WPO node. I haven’t actually looked inside of that so it might even be more than you need (but it says ‘Simple’ so I hope that also means ‘Cheap’ :D)
Speedtree Wind on simple/basic setting will also work ok for some basic wind.