Sculpting for fast level layout

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October 29th, 2009

It would be really hard to add terrain tools to our engine and keep the quality we have for the terrain, but sometimes it is still nice to layout a level using sculpting tools. I have recently been testing out doing basic layout in Mudbox before making a height map in xNormal, and finally running it through World Machine 2. This workflow is a bit awkward, but still allows us to automatically generate a lot of nice terrain data, and so is actually still faster than many other methods. Here is a comparison with the Mudbox sculpt on the top, and the same terrain in the engine:

Some small details are lost, but it is still nice to be able to have control of the layout, and work with a tool for sculpting as advanced as Mudbox. Here is the new level I am working on that takes advantage of this technique!