Submitted by , posted on 15 May 2001

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This shot was taken from the landscape renderer I'm working on. It demonstrates the use of LODs for landscape rendering.

The landscape is rendered as a 16x16 grid of tiles, with each tile drawing one of 5 pre-calculated LOD meshes (depending on distance from the viewer). The gaps between the tiles have not yet been filled in. The LOD reduction routine I'm using preserves detail with a bias towards higher points, so distant peaks are preserved.

With LOD turned off (each tile being just a grid of 16x16 quads), I get 14 fps in polygon mode, or 4 fps in wireframe mode, drawing 115200 triangles (on a GeForce2 Pro with FSAA 2x). With LOD turned on, the triangle count depends on the complexity of the landscape mesh. This one is nice and flat and so reduces to about 12000 triangles per frame, which displays at about 80fps in polygon mode or 20fps wireframe. Despite the fact that this landscape, including all the LODs, is made up of 90059 vertices and 145374 triangles, it manages to fit into about 1.45MB of memory (by the cunning use of BYTES instead of floats wherever possible).

The landscape renderer uses OpenGL. Eventually I hope to use it in a racing game I'm designing.

Ben Woodhouse

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