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Simple yet powerful digger for Unity's terrains (soon to be on the Asset Store)

Discussion in 'Assets and Asset Store' started by Amandin-E, Nov 24, 2018.

?

What would be the best name for this asset?

Poll closed Dec 1, 2018.
  1. Digger

    2 vote(s)
    9.5%
  2. Magic Digger

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  3. Terrain Digger

    9 vote(s)
    42.9%
  4. Miner

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  5. Magic Miner

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  6. Terrain Miner

    3 vote(s)
    14.3%
  7. Magic Mole

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  8. Terrain Mole

    3 vote(s)
    14.3%
  9. something else? (reply to this thread to give your idea)

    4 vote(s)
    19.0%
  1. Amandin-E

    Amandin-E

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2015
    Posts:
    435
    Hi there,

    Some of you may already know me as I'm the author of Ultimate Terrains.
    Today I would like to introduce a new product I'm developing (for those who bought Ultimate Terrains, don't worry, I'm still developing it as well!).

    I realized that many people don't need a procedurally-generated-and-editable-in-real-time voxel terrain (especially because this is CPU/GPU/memory intensive), but still want to be able to create some caves, tunnels, cliffs and overhangs on their classical, standard, Unity terrain.

    This is why I decided to create this new product.

    With it, you will be able to:
    • dig in your Unity terrain just like if it was a smooth voxel terrain.
    • apply different textures on the cliffs, in the caves, etc.
    With it, you won't be able to:
    • dig in real-time (even if that may change in the future).
    • generate caves procedurally.
    Basically, when you dig in your terrain with this tool, it will automatically cut the terrain (making it transparent) at the right place and will generate a small chunk of voxels just where you need it. The resulting mesh is created thanks to Marching Cubes, using the new Job system and the Burst compiler. It is extremely fast, this is why in the future it will probably be possible to dig in real-time as well.
    Of course, it also automatically creates a collision mesh as well as proper triggers to automatically disable terrain collision for the right objects at the right time. No need to add any script on your objects. It is handled automatically.

    A video is better than one thousand words, so here it is:


    The video looks like it is laggy when I press play, but it isn't.

    BTW, I'm not sure how I should name this product... Could you answer the poll or give me better ideas? :)
     
    Last edited: Nov 24, 2018
  2. Razmot

    Razmot

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2013
    Posts:
    302
    Great Idea !

    Ultimate Terrain Holes ?
     
    Amandin-E likes this.
  3. Amandin-E

    Amandin-E

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2015
    Posts:
    435
    I'm afraid it'd be confusing for people to have Ultimate Terrains and Ultimate Terrain Holes.
     
  4. secondsight_

    secondsight_

    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2014
    Posts:
    146
    Very nice ! Keeping an eye on it.
    Are trees, objects and details on a already finished terrain deleted ?
     
    Amandin-E likes this.
  5. Amandin-E

    Amandin-E

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2015
    Posts:
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    Thanks! I haven't done that for now, but I will definitely add this feature. It should be straightforward.

    Also, I've just successfully integrated it with CTS ;) Need more work to setup things automatically but I can already confirm this is working.
     
  6. Amandin-E

    Amandin-E

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2015
    Posts:
    435
    And here is the proof (a screenshot made with CTS). Had to modify a little bit the Mesh shader of CTS to make it work properly. I will contact Adam to ask him if he could include my version in future CTS updates.

    terrain-digger-cts.jpg
     
    AdamGoodrich likes this.
  7. ceebeee

    ceebeee

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2017
    Posts:
    397
    Looks amazing. I'm curious what ballpark you have for price?

    Also It reminds me of plowing or digging furrows, maybe the name could be based on that.
     
  8. Amandin-E

    Amandin-E

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2015
    Posts:
    435
    I’m not sure yet. Probably between $40 and $60. I will probably do a launch offer as well.. around $30 during one week for example.

    Thanks for the ideas!
     
    ceebeee likes this.
  9. neoshaman

    neoshaman

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2011
    Posts:
    5,570
    I guess it use the voxel for auto placement of trigger zone to shift to cave underground collision?
     
  10. Amandin-E

    Amandin-E

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2015
    Posts:
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    Indirectly, yes, as voxels keep track of altered areas.
     
  11. Cecrit

    Cecrit

    Joined:
    May 18, 2015
    Posts:
    17
    Loving it so far!
    As for name I would throw in the suggestion of Volumetric Terrain as it would suggest more than just heightmap based terrain.

    How does it work (or is supposed to) when someone tries to create floating islands or deep and wide cave systems with multiple openings?
     
  12. pointcache

    pointcache

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2012
    Posts:
    542
    What do you mean by this? If it creates a collision mesh, why do you need triggers? Does it work with navmesh?
     
  13. Amandin-E

    Amandin-E

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2015
    Posts:
    435
    Floating islands would be quite complicated to sculpt, but there is nothing that would prevent you from digging a lot to create floating islands (the top of the islands being the normal terrain). You should be able to sculpt anything you can sculpt with a full-voxel-terrain.

    The triggers disable terrain collision at right time to let objects pass through the holes. The collision mesh is nothing more than a mesh collider on cave meshes so the objects don’t pass through the floor of caves.
    No, navmesh isn’t updated for now. Actually I’m not sure i should spend much time on this as the new terrain system will bring this feature out of the box in Unity 2019.2 (as well as other things like light mapping that currently don’t go through the holes).
    Actually, my system will be a lot better with future official terrain holes feature!
     
    pointcache likes this.
  14. awesomedata

    awesomedata

    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2014
    Posts:
    1,178
    This looks very useful (and performant!) compared to entirely voxel-based terrains.

    A few questions/insights from an artist standpoint:

    • Would you eventually be able to use different mesh shapes (at different voxel resolutions for different sculpt detail levels) as "brushes" used to "dig" into the terrain (while being able to also set the material being used for the "dirt" portions)?


    • What about standard "mesh" terrains? -- Can these also be dug into, or is it just Terrains?


    • It would also be useful to be able to add "clumps" of dirt in particular areas too (that take on the terrain texture) to help create certain kinds of "gentle" overhangs that don't particularly need to "dig" or have custom collision triggers.

      In general, these "gentle" overhangs are done via mesh implants (i.e. literally intersecting meshes), but the seams they create usually need to be hidden by grass or other techniques (such as special shader+mesh band-aids). Your asset could solve this problem by grabbing the terrain texture and generating blob geometry in tricky spots. Just an idea.


    • Another important consideration -- if the voxel groups could be stored/associated with the terrain/mesh somehow, it would be easier for some users to show/hide entire terrains (and their holes) with something like World Streamer.


    • Finally, some way of generating or handling LOD for very far away terrains with holes is going to be important in cases where the terrain silhouette is heavily modified with holes (e.g. the mountain in BotW with a giant hole through it). The issue is going to be figuring out what constitutes a small dent versus a huge hole. Perhaps the volume/size/number of voxels used could help determine this by allowing the user to pick a "cutoff" volume of voxels in the distant mesh? Another option could be to allow the user to "select" groups of voxels that would be used (or unused) in the LOD contribution -- but this could be tedious.
    Also -- "Holey Moley", "Digger", "Super Digger", "Holes", "Endless Holes", or even "Ultimate Holes!" -- because I think the user can figure out that holes are probably for some sort of a "Terrain" -- and calling it "Terrain" + anything could be redundant and not very memorable, especially if it is not clear whether this is "Voxel" terrain, "Mesh" terrain, or "Unity" terrain -- and trying to specify that in the title could get convoluted.. Form follows function -- and the main function of this is "Holes" or "Digging", right? For example, even if it uses voxels, I probably wouldn't mention voxels in the title, otherwise it could confuse users on what it actually *does* which makes this asset unique. Just my two cents. :)
     
  15. Amandin-E

    Amandin-E

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    awesomedata and ceebeee like this.
  16. PaperPrototype

    PaperPrototype

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    Jan 3, 2018
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    3
  17. BattleSheep94

    BattleSheep94

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2019
    Posts:
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    Is it Releases yet? I search for a digging Tool/asset to dig ingame with a shovel or pickaxe
     
  18. Willbkool_FPCS

    Willbkool_FPCS

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2018
    Posts:
    151
    Yes, it's called Digger, look it up in the Asset Store. There are two versions, the newest allows digging in runtime.
     
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