World Machine Development News

After the Storm

GDC was a whirlwind! It was great to meet a lot of longtime World Machine users and put some faces to names, as well as connect with new folks. I got a lot of great feedback about what people are hoping to get out of their terrain software.

This week has been a slow return to normal. I’m making small tweaks and fixes to ‘Alpine Lakes’, including tracking down some issues that have affected a couple folks activating with the new license manager.

Have you gotten a chance to play with 3025 yet?

Encounter any issues, or have anything not work the way you want/expect? I’d love to continue polishing the new features before they drop to Release. Email me with your thoughts, or post to the comments here.

For example, a few small improvements that are in-progress include:

  • We forgot to package the Water Output macro with the initial release. Oops! You can get it here for now if you’re missing it.
  • Allow the Erosion and Thermal Erosion devices to accept water in their sediment removal inputs
  • Improve erosion’s ability to treat areas masked by water as permanent (stay at the input height)
  • Have Mesh Output accept the water datatype and just Do the Right Thing for export.

There’s going to be a lot of continued iteration in the future on the new features exposed in Alpine Lakes. Expect a followup build 3026 once some of the above issues are ironed out and more feedback is incorporated.

Simultaneously, the Help Center should continue a slow march towards full documentation of all the new devices and features. It takes a lot of work to write good docs, but I’ll do my best.

Until next time!


By Stephen

Founder of World Machine

2 replies on “After the Storm”

Hey, congratulations on a successful GDC!

A few kinks I encountered while playing with the new build:

1. Rivers are heavily resolution dependent, and sometimes do not reach the sea when plugged into coastal erosion.
2. Water sometimes flows where it shouldn’t. Floods beaches, leaves droplets at top of the mountains etc.
3. Coastal erosion sometimes does not work correctly with guide level. The beach sometimes ends up completely submerged, no matter how many times I click the button to match sea level with guide level.
4. Overall quality of river generation is a bit too low, sometimes there are very obvious straight, pixelated lines.
5. A soil deposit node to go with water dynamics will help tremendously. I tried to do it with snow, but it destroys the river completely, no matter how you mask.

The new updates sound very promising! I hope at least some of these get fixed before 3026 as well.

Thank you for the list! I’ll follow up via email more extensively, but for #2, make sure that the Flow Restructure device is immediately before Create Water – there shouldn’t be top of mountain droplets unless something has disturbed the terrain shape.

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