Terrain caves?

Is it possible to carve out caves into the terrain? I know many engines struggle with this and usually requires traditional mesh based caves, but it’d be awesome to be able to carve them out. Is this available or maybe planned? CryEngine for example does this by allowing boxes of voxels, which is pretty neat.

It is not possible right now, but you can make a feature request for it here.

I don’t think there is such a thing atm.

I achieved a cave through a terrain hole and meshes for the walls of the cave.

Actually, CryEngine doesn’t support this at the moment. (Kicked out for v 3.5)
However some Unity Developers created fantastic voxel based terrain/mesh engines.
I’d love to have such a thing. Would be very very powerful if your project features lots of caves and crazy, cliff-based landscape…

Ah, I didn’t know it was removed. Thank you.

Yes, I’m aware of the voxel stuff going on in Unity, but ideally I wouldn’t want to use an entirely voxel based terrain as it’s not the most optimal for only wanting some caves and overhangs. I’m really not sure how to go about it to be honest.

Jup old CryEngine Voxels were quite buggy… I think they might be redoing it…
And you’re right a pure voxel terrain with far view distance would be really expensive.
Mixing it would be cool.
Alternatively I could even imagine a voxel editor tool which then bakes static meshes…
I think that would be an incredibly powerful landscape tool :smiley:

Then why not use Zbrush/3dCoat/Mudbox or the sculpting tools within 3dmax? (I think blender even has something similar)

I modeled a cave like old mine in 3ds max planned to make hole in side of hill of the terrain (using landscape). I got a hole in terrain so player can walk through into my mesh mine/cave, but my prob is the terrain is still rendered there. I hope I wrote that right so you can under stand. there in the place I painted it the player can walk through the terrain even tho it still looks like there terrain is there. its funny and irritating thing. I don’t know if its a bug or what.

Yes would be really nice to have some thing like this as CryEngine have/used to have. you could to really amazing caves and sculpture better hill like details with it.

You could try making a landscape for the floor and another for the ceiling of the cave, and simply flipping the ceiling landscape over so the vertices are facing the camera.

I’m not sure that’ll work quite right. The seams would never come together well I don’t think. In addition to that you’ve 2 or more terrains being rendered then.

I suppose the best method still is to use ZBrush and sculpt out the cave as just a mesh. Kind of really sucks to still have to do this with latest and greatest engines. Would be great if Epic could chime in on this… maybe something already on the roadmap?

I think the solution is voxel boxes. They’d basically be zones that’d have the terrain behave like voxels so you can carve out holes, have overhangs, etc… they could also be completely independent from the terrain it self and just be a new type of voxel terrain that can be used along with traditional terrain for the caves, overhangs, etc…

Lets say you want to build a cave.

One way:
Create a cave that you think might be well-fitting in lets say zBrush.
First of all both zBrush and Mudbox seem not to be made for creating hollow, complex interior structures…
Then if you’re happy with it, texture it, export it, import to UE4.
Place it and do test. Most time you’ll then find out it’s not as good as you thought it’d be.
Back to zBrush again. Do corrections, export etc etc.

The other way:
Place a voxel olume/object or what it would be like.
Realtime preview, game-oriented editor navigation.
Jump into game and try if it works. If not, you can do changes within seconds.
Once you’re happy, bake, or even better ‘freeze’ it into a static mesh.
In editor, you might even be able to ‘unfreeze’ the actor and make it an editable voxel object again.

That would be cool. :cool:

@Krileon: Just what I thought too.