Creating terrain, intro to layers

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In this tutorial you will learn how subtract a "level box" and how to make and manipulate terrain.

Open the BiA editor and click “file/new”.

Open your texture browser and open the “t_sky” package. Select the “editor” group and click on the texture: “texture_editor.sky”.

Now, right click on the cube icon on the side tool bar and type in the size of the cube you want.

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(Tip: try to keep your brush sizes divisible by 2, it helps to keep you level looking clean in the editor and reduces alignment problems).

Hit the “build” button and close the window, then hit “subtract”.

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To make the texture larger, and easier on the eye, do this: Select all the surfaces and right click. Under “face properties”, change the X and Y values to your likings. Close the window when your done.

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Now the texture should be larger.

Now we need a “zoneinfo”. To add one, open your actor browser and select actor/info/zoneinfo.

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Just left click on it once and close the window.

To place it, right click in your top viewport at the centre of your large brush. The click “add zoneinfo here”.

Now to adjust its properties. Select the zoneinfo you just added and double click on it or right click and select “properties” to open the properties window.

Under the “zoneinfo” tab, change “bTerrainZone” to true.

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Close the window.

Click on the terrain editing icon on your side toolbar , select the “terrains” tab, click “new”.

In the window that pops up, you can adjust a few settings. I advise you to leave the package and group name the same, so your terrain is saved with your level file. The name can be changed, as you will need unique names for each terrain you make if you have more than one terraininfo in your level. (It is possible to have several). The Xsize and Ysize can be changed to your liking, but anything over 512 may not work. The X and Y size dictate how large your terrain will be. (Although, you can stretch your terrain in the terraininfo properties, which will be discussed later).

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Now, to create a layer.

Open your texture browser again and open the package “t_terrain”. Select a texture you find suitable. Close the texture browser.

Now, in the terrain editing window, select the “layers” tab. Select and undefined layer and select “new”. Another window will pop up. Same thing applies here as with the terrain layer, leave the package and group names as they are, but rename the “name” to something appropriate. The Uscale and Vscale can be adjusted to your likings. These settings stretch the texture, which can reduce the appearance of tiling. Setting it to 4-8 will be best for most textures. The higher you go, the lest tiling you will see, but the lower res the texture will become.

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When your done, close the terrain editing window by clicking on the camera icon on your side toolbar.

Now, sometimes your terrain might not appear. You can fix this by doing several things. Do a rebuild. Move the new terraininfo icon you see in you viewports to the centre of your zoneinfo icon. Or, move it just above or below the zoneinfo icon.

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Now, if you would like the terraininfo icon to be larger, or any icon for that matter, do this:

Select the properties of the icon. Open the “display” tab in the properties window, then open the “DrawScale3D” and adjust the X,Y and Z levels, or adjust the level in “DrawScale”. (Note: these icons won´t appear ingame by default).

Right now the terrain is flat, you can make hills and valleys yourself by painting, or you can randomly generate it.

Lets start with a random generate. Select the terrain editing tool in your side toolbar and do the following: Click on the “heightmap info” picture first, then under “tools” select the “select” tool, then go to the “misc” tab.

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Now, you can add any values you like here, just remember to check “use entire hieghtmap”. When you have entered you values, hit “build”. (Note: high steps and and strength will create some wild looking hills, play with the settings and even if you type the same thing in, each time you hit build, you will get something different).

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Now, you can paint on terrain yourself as well. Under the “tools” tab select “painting”. Again, make sure you have the heightmap selected. There are a number of sliders on the right side. The inner and outer radius will affect your brush size, while “strength” will affect how much the terrain is heightened or lowered. To raise, hold down CTRL and left click, to lower, hold down CTRL and right click. If your terrain goes black in the 3D view, change the viewport render to “textured” by clicking on the 4th box from the left on the viewport toolbar, or by hitting ALT + 6.

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Thats it for basic terrain, have fun.


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