Creating worlds with convincingly varying terrain character has always been difficult. It has gotten a bit easier thanks to this new device.
Create a simple grayscale guide map and any number of terrain type inputs. The Height Choooser will decide which terrain to place where according to the guide map, smoothly blending between them.
What's more, you also get mask outputs showing where each terrain type was placed -- very useful for further processing or texturing.
World Machine has always been able to produce excellent color maps for texturing. WM 2.3 introduces an exciting new way to manipulate your texture masks.
The Splat Converter is a mask manipulation device that was designed to improve the ability to create so-called "splatmaps" or "weightmaps" for some modern game engines such as Unity and Unreal Engine. A splatmap is essentially a guide bitmap indicating the influence of different terrain textures at each pixel.
The Splat Converter helps you manipulate your masks destined for splatting. You can choose which material blends to favor, the exclusion amount (contrast), and of course enforce sums-to-one behavior across your masks. The Splat Converter supports up to 16 channel splatmap sets for your highly varied scenes!
The Colorizer is a simple but powerful way to define texture colormaps.
The example above uses only a single Colorizer to achieve all of its texturing!
You'll find yourself using this handy new device all over the place in your texturing networks.
If you have multiple monitors, you probably don't need to be told how useful they are!
The Professional Edition now has multiple monitor support. Keep any views you want open on your additional monitor(s).
Sometimes you need to export a large and detailed world region that doesn't fit well into a rectangle.
The Tiled build engine now has support for exporting a complex tileset instead of a complete regular grid. Although the tiles are still indexed on a grid, you can choose to export only certain tiles to better handle irregular map areas without wasting time building areas you do not need.
Tiled Input is similarly updated with support for missing tiles and pickable import regions.
In addition, tiles with non-square dimensions are now fully supported.
As the steady march of technology has continued, higher and higher resolutions become possible.
Accordingly, all of the resolution limits in World Machine have been raised to let you work with higher detail previews, views, and builds.
Of course, you will need a powerful workstation to perform at the new maximums. Luckily, some of the remaining power-hungry devices have been multithreaded for higher performance. In addition, the Professional Edition can now use up to 32 cores!
Also helping out, in a nice free upgrade the Standard Edition has gained 64bit support and 2-way multithreading.
Some highly requested improvements have been made to the import and export options of World Machine:
You can now import DXF polylines with elevations!
A long requested feature, your Layout Generators can now import spline and line shapes with elevations from your favorite 3D software into World Machine. This makes it easy to imprint your terrain with geometry that you've already laid out instead of having to replicate it inside of World Machine.
A highly requested feature, meshes may now be exported with their UV coordinates attached. For some workflows this cuts out an additional stop to assign a planar mapping.
Additionally, tiled-build meshes are now placed automatically in their proper worldspace location so that your meshes line up right away.
For the first time, World Machine can preserve all geolocation metadata using the .BT file format. You can now export your real world heightfields from GIS applications like Global Mapper, perform image processing on the heightfields, and save out the modified files with their geolocation data intact (including writing a new .prj file).
The world file shown to the right is an outline of how it's done. Just connect the pass-through metadata output and inputs and you're good to go!
Learning how to use complex graphics software can be intimidating.
To help out, we took some time to create a collection of several dozen new example files for World Machine.
These files consist of both technique demonstrations and also more general example scenes for you to pick apart and see how they work. Whether you're importing and improving real world data, texturing, using layouts, or simulating lava...
We also added a "Open Example" menu shortcut to make the examples even easier to get at.
All of the illustrations on this page are images from an example world. Look them up if you're curious. And enjoy!
There are plenty of smaller improvements that nonetheless can be a real boon. These include:
You can now set a base elevation for the world that can be below zero. This small but important change makes matching to real world datasets a bit easier.
World Machine now creates a handy palette of your most recently used devices along with any of your customized Favorites quick access list.
Motion Blur can now be performed at any heading!
You can now export 8 or 16bit per channel TIFF and PNG bitmap output files
... and other even smaller details all across the program (for example, parameters in a device might now properly enable or disable themselves).
World Machine 2.3 was originally planned to be only a bug fix release. Even though we slipped more than a few new features into the release, the original goal was not forgotten. Quite a number of issues identified in previous versions of World Machine have been fixed.
Memory-related errata in particular were heavily targeted. We remodeled many parts of the core codebase to help prevent future issues and make future releases happen faster!
Crash when ATI Radeon driver has triple buffering + vsynch When importing tilesets that are partial, need a way to specify overall bounds Should really build necessary blend neighbors when selectively exporting tiles Made clamp find extents work again Ramp now takes larger values Fixed regression where path falloff didn't work Made detail, difference mode work in RGB/scalar combo Paths with only one vertex now simply have that height at all values Subdivide vertex now works correctly in closed paths when vertex is beginning or end. Fixed preset listbox not being tall enough You can now dismiss tabbed worlds directly, rather than having to first select that tab. Fixed bug where Equalizer never captures sample Fixed bug which occurred with multiple render extents not updating their tile reporting properly Erosion flowmaps not masked Crash when inserting empty macro Crash in splitter Crash saving after deleting a routing point Leftside view cannot show 2D overlay view Non-square tiled terrain export errors Clicking on TFI tile size boxes cause extents to change Non-square TIFF files import wrong Routes broken when copy/pasting macro? New Groups start with broken alpha Pasting devices removes route points Bank Selector wierd pt2 Bank Selector wierdness cant save sessions when text packets are in world Paths in program options are not directly settable File Input crashes if HFZ file not present Sessions are broken.. sometimes Drop curve to surface sometimes crashes World Machine crash at startup After adjusting shape, following devices are not re-built PNG file export bug on massive size worlds 3D view z-fighting of water plane Disconnecting a wire falsifies the current device when it shoudln't Very large worlds causes erosion mishap; possibly other devices too Mesh Output with quads displays wrong Right click deleting a wire doesn't falsify Changing device by clicking on wire or route point causes issues Routing additional wires through existing RPs causes collapse Cancel while blending does not cancel immediately Tiled Build has small memory leak during blending? Tiled Mesh output not correctly located Select Color does not disable parameters properly worlds are not saving lighting angle lines disappear in layout view on selection Converting to macro doesnt recognize when multiple wires belong to same devices subdividing polygon only adds vertex on one side TMD freezing WM on load WM 2.2 Crashes on load with stranded route points Updated device parameters dont show up Build when already built does not finish Welded vertices behave oddly when subdivided Tiff import Breaklink doesn't falsify its output. why did this change? Selecting non-visible (parameter) devices in a macroworld, or maybe any world, does not update leftside preview Erosive Power Slider odd Advanced Perlin Numeric setting tiling numbering Crash on load Going above 160 size preview causes pixelation Erosion dialog: changing strength of filter effects geo enhancement Blur device Motion blur does not work Overlay view does not update color table Moving device origin with wheels does not properly update remaing network behind WM Crash from building TFI bug: extents output crashes world machine mesh not compatible yet with new display system size mismatch on previews inside macros Thermal Weathering - can you enable hyperthreding on this device too? Macro Parameter names / options not taking Select Color failure "Delete Device!" deletes Group instead VBO checkbox does not stay checked bitmap output flipped Seamfixing checked in layout view causes display irregularities Conserve mem checkbox On multiple monitors, dragging WM to 2nd monitor causes erratic behavior Advanced Perlin Persistence guide wonky RGB Tiff Export sometimes interpreted wrongly by other apps
The best news for existing World Machine customers is that you can upgrade to 2.3 for free! Just follow the link below to head to the upgrade site and get setup. If you haven't purchased World Machine yet, head to the Purchase page for more details.