Submitted by , posted on 17 June 2002

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After looking at IOTD for more than 2 years now, I decided it was my turn to show up what I was up to. I know this looks like a cheesy terrain renderer, in fact it is but by posting this IOTD I wanted to put the emphasis more on the terrain editor than the terrain renderer itself (I know it's not the prettiest terrain renderer you have seen!).

So you guessed it, this is a demonstration of my terrain editor I am currently working on, as well as a Java pathfinding demo I have done last week on my lunch time. The pathfinding code has yet to be translated to C++ so I can incorporate it in my terrain editor. : )

The editor is built for a strategy game I am working on. This is not my first game, but it is my most serious attempt to build a complex one. This time I am building all the necessary components (engine, editors, etc) before writing a single line of code for the game, I really want to finish it. The UI isn't the best in the world since I am learning MFC along the way (we should have something along the line of JFC/Swing in C++!). I have been working on this for a few months in my spare time (some weeks I can work something like 5-10 hours while other times I won't touch it for a few weeks).

Right now the team consists of two artists and one programmer (me). The artists are working on the concept art for the game so I have the time to finish the editor.

There is a build you can try at (no source code). If you try it, I'd like to hear from you.. Specs of your machine, fps, etc. And if you encounter a problem, send me the WhatsWrong.log file in the data\log directory.. : )

The controls are a bit flaky at the moment, I have a bug in my DirectInput code with MFC. It works well when in fullscreen though (but the editor is limited to windowed mode). The controls are: Arrows for movement, Page up and Page down for looking up and down.

It has only be tested on my two home computers which are:
  • Both are Athlon 750
  • Win 98 and Win XP
  • Both have GeForce2 MX 400
  • 512MB and 1Gig of RAM
  • On the technical side:
  • The editor is built using MFC and DX8.1
  • Properties editor (heightmap, detail texture, skybox, texture layers, etc) so you can see the modifications on the fly
  • Terrain, loaded from a heightmap, uses a quadtree for culling (no LOD yet)
  • Terrain textures generated based on height and slope using configurable texture layers
  • Uses skyboxes
  • Uses DX Effect Files for different rendering effects
  • Missing features:
  • Terrain editor generating a lightmap (next on my todo list)
  • I have to fix a bug in my DirectInput code using MFC (works well in fullscreen)
  • Vegetation based on the texture layers (which can be compared to regions)
  • Console (the underlying model class is done, I just need to plug it in the UI)
  • Day/Night cycle (will play a role in the final game)
  • Water (I had a transparent water plane slightly moving up and down, it sucked so I removed it!)
  • Fog
  • Get rid of all programmer art!
  • Feel free to visit for more details. Any suggestions or comments can be sent to Patrick Lafleur, aka nosfy

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