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18Aug/13Off

August Already?

You might have noticed that my last post mentioned that the next TerreSculptor build should be available in July.

Well, July has gone by and we are well into August.

It would seem that it has taken considerably longer than what I had estimated to get the latest set of fixes and features completed.

I typically get between 60 and 70 hours each week into software development, however, at the current half-a-million lines of code I have been spending a considerable amount of time in reorganizing and refactoring the code base to allow for easier maintenance and future features addition. This project really requires a team of two to four software programmers.

The next build release for TerreSculptor will be available in a few weeks time, hopefully by the end of this month.

 

A few of the changes and updates in this next build include:

  • Editor 65536x65536 Terrain Resolution. The editor maximum heightmap dimensions has been increased from 4096x4096 to 65536x65536. Resolutions this large will require 64-bit Windows and 8GB+ of memory.
  • Numerous additional import/export file formats.
  • Significant improvements to the file read/write classes. For better performance, better error handling, and a base class setup that will allow additional file formats to be added more easily.
  • Floatmap support. A lot of the code has been completed for the future support of floatmaps (floating point heightmaps). TerreSculptor will allow working in either standard 16-bit integer heightmap mode or 32-bit floating-point floatmap mode (requiring twice the memory), with simple changing between modes at any time if desired.

I have also been reworking the user interface in preparation for the change to a dark color theme similar to most other 3D applications.

 

I have decided to push the status of TerreSculptor back to Alpha.

Since the software is still free-for-use including commercial use, this delay is good for everyone out there who is using the software.

It was at pre-Beta since I was hoping to have it in full Beta by the end of this year. However, there are still so many features that I want completed for the first retail release that it will be sometime next year, with some of the following main features planned:

  • CryEngine metrics support.
  • Colorset Editor.
  • Layer Creator (currently the Extractor dropdown).
  • Mask Editor and Compositor.
  • Additional terrain generators.
  • Multi-Noisemap Generator.
  • Additional modifiers.
  • Additional Erosion modifiers.
  • Project file open/save.
  • Terrain LOD system.
  • Terrain Stack.
  • and much more...

 

I have also started drafting some How To tutorials for proper methods of obtaining and converting Digital Elevation Model files that will make it onto the wiki soon.

-eof-

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