Suggestions for making an earth terrain.

I havent really done any terrains yet in panda but i was thinking about when i make my earth terrain i would use a high resoulution earth heightmap that i could divide into squares and make a kind of tile engine in panda so it would only load the squares your ship is closest to to save memory because i will have about 32 squares per planet so i wanted to make it so that when i reached the last square on the side of the earth it would automaticly load the first one to make it look like the earth is spherical.

 I dont know if this is a good idea or not so i would like some advice :bulb:

1.) Make a sphere and apply a suitable earth texture on it
2.) Create Specularity map for water
3.) Create normal/bump or the best, a parallax map and apply it on the sphere
4.) Create a Specularity map for terrain, and make special space for things like urbanizied areas, forrests, deep jungles, snow/ice-cold areas and deserts.
5.) Create a very-high poly model of the terrain and let other modules optimize it:

  • Very Long distance: Low LOD, more normal maps
  • Long distance: Low LOD, Less normal maps, better texture quality
  • Far: Medium-Low LOD, Less normal maps, best specularity maps quality, objects, high tex quality
  • Medium Distance: Medium LOD, Lots of normal maps, best spec maps, diffuse maps, high tex quality, anisotropy filtering
  • Pretty Close view: High LOD, Less Normal maps, enchanced best spec maps, best diffuse maps, full antisotropy filtering
  • Close: Low view-distance, Very high LOD, all normal maps, enchanced best spec maps, best diffuse maps, full antisotropy filtering
  • Game-Close: Low view-distance, Highest LOD+b-smoothing of polys, all normal maps, enchanced best spec maps, best diffuse maps, full antisotropy filtering, depth of field, motion blur, (SSAO?), high ambient settings 1 core and highest ambient lighting for 2-4 core :slight_smile:,
  • Gaming/FPS: Good view-distance, Highest LOD+b-smoothing of polys, all normal maps, all enchanced best spec maps, some diffuse maps, full antisotropy filtering, depth of field, motion blur, (SSAO?), high ambient settings 1 core and highest ambient lighting for 2-4 core :slight_smile:, all objects, dynamic weather, dnyamic objects
  • Closest view: almost no view-distance, very low lod, all normal maps, all spec maps, the very very best+enchanced textures.

That’s if you want to go with the modern gaming-graphics wind. If you just want to “show” the earth and not making the whole giant world, then just copy the google earth earth model(should be found somewhere) and load it.

ok so what your saying is that i can make a high poly model and have it become less detailed the further parts of it is away from the camera?

Heavily simplified, yes.

If you want to place the player in the earth and then make him quickly “fly” throug the earth just by selecting the place where should he be, then you should use some effects so it won’t look really really VERY ugly. Belive me, without a specularity map or “shiness” the earth in-game looks like a china’s plastic toy…

oh no… i think you misunderstood my question. I need the earth to be an ‘area’ not an object in space. I need to make my ship fly accross it so i dont think a sphere will work because it will eveutually fly off the side… but i need to make it seem like it is a sphere so i was thinking of making multiple terrains and peice them togerther like the earth and to make it seem like a sphere when it reaches the edge of one side of the earth it loads the next set of terrain tiles.

1.) Make an infinite plane
2.) Make objects on the plane appear smaller if “they’re in distance”.

btw this solution of an infinite earth is not very liked by the players… :unamused: