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Friday, August 17, 2012

More Grammar Screenshots

Here is another series of screenshots. These are also from the Canyon City grammar.






I really need to improve the lighting in this preview. I normally export the final mesh to 3ds max and render it with nice global illumination. The meshes I get out of this are so large 3ds max cannot deal with them anymore.

The mesh complexity is a problem only at this stage of the grammar edition. Once this is voxelized and optimized back to polygons, it will be fast enough even for realtime rendering.

Over the weekend I will see if I can load this into 3ds max to produce better previews and share them with you.


17 comments:

  1. Just amazing...

    Can you attach here some code of this big grammar, just to see how complex is !!!.

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    1. Thanks. There is a lot to do, for instance the houses you see on top are more of a sketch right now. I need to define them better, add stairs, etc.

      When this thing is done I will post the entire text of the grammar. What you see here in these screenshots takes around one thousand lines of grammar code.

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  2. how about adding SSAO to voxel studio for better screenshots, it doesnt care about polygon count ?

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    1. It would help for sure. Let's see if can make some time to add it.

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  3. Wow... But what about roads and stuff?

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    1. This structure in particular has no roads in the traditional sense. There are many platforms connected by stairs. This is how you move around.

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    2. Or, if you're wealthy, by JETPACK.

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    3. On the subject of getting around, this thing is incredibly massive, and getting down from the top would be a pain to say the least, some people wouldn't even be able to do it... so my solution would be: Elevators.

      Now, since this seems to be a somewhat medieval fantasy setting, I would opt for either magical engine(somewhat boring and easy solution) or go for the interesting option: man powered. If you think of it in a social sense, this would add jobs for strong men who would spend maybe an hour at a time, operating the elevators, lifting people by either means of some sort of wheel (like medieval cranes, or those things often seen on pirate ships... atleast in the movies) or just a complex system of pulleys.

      Could you make something like that with the systems you have in place now?

      Oh wait, there is water, right? You could have water-powered elevators as well =3, if the water flows from the top to the bottom in a quick and forceful manner.

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    4. Water-powered elevators in the desert? :)

      I'll avoid magic as much as possible. I've grown very tired of the Disney/Tolkien troupe.

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    5. Well, I figured, the water is sort of caught on the ceiling/roof, is it not? and it has to flow down, presumably through those towers, so if it goes with enough force (which might not be the case, not sure how efficient such a thing would be) it could be used to power things, but it might be more logical to use wind power =3... and some safety mechanics...

      That gets me to another question/thought... Do you think it would be possible to have the program make suitable solutions? For example for certain mechanics (such as the lift/elevator) to use water if there is plentiful flowing water nearby, use wind if there is enough constant wind, or otherwise man-power? It would be awesome if it would be possible, as it would add even more liveliness and realism to the world. It would basically give the impression that there are real, problem solving people living in those villages and cities.

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  4. Hey man,

    in one of your previous posts you said you had imported the structure into max for rendering.
    How about you make those files available around a little competition or something?
    Lets see how far people can get your geometry visibly with a nice render...

    Keep it up! This is so massivly epic, good job! :)

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    1. It is a great idea. I will consider it.

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  5. just an FYI your world is AWESOME! keep the screenshots and any insightful info coming!

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  6. really enjoy the fact that you refer to the structural similarities of these buildings as gramar. I'm curious if you are aware of Amos Rapoport's book The Meaning of the Built Environment: A Nonverbal Communication Approach. Therein, Rapoport describes architecture as containing a semiotic language. He sees the architecture of premodern or non-contemporary societies as having repeated elements that communicate specific meanings to the members of that society or culture. (However, he does not extend this observation to contemporary man made environment. In contemporary settings, or perhaps, more specifically, non-traditional settings, he believes the structures produced are drawn from many architectural dialects and languages, therefore confusing the meaning of any particular feature of architecture.) Anyway, these meanings often come in the form of social cues that give individuals an idea of how they should behave in particular setting. For instance, an individual of a particular society can tell when entering a setting if it is a private area, or a temple, or a public area etc. In essence, buildings and other structures encode certain messages that individual, if they are a part of that culture, can decode, allowing them to act accordingly in a particular man made setting.
    Rapoport points out that in these premodern or non-contemporary societies, builders are (generally) limited in their designs by what they know and what forms, spaces, and structures communicate the particular message that is appropriate for the intended use of what they happen to be building. This leads to repeated forms that give societies an understandable semiotic language. You brilliantly and eloquently referred to these varied but repeated forms of architecture as a gramar. I wonder then, if the gramar of a particular vernacular architectural style can thus be interpreted as being proper of improper or even legible or non-legible. It seems that you have found a way to reproduce this particular grammatical style perfectly. Even tough it is a fantasy gramar, (like elvish maybe?) it seems realistic because you seemed to have picked up on the same ideas that Rapoport was interested in.
    I wonder also about the introduction about slang into the picture. Obviously not every structure in a town will be some perfect archetype of the vernacular. Is it possible with procedural generation to produce structures with features or elements that subvert the norm?
    Additionally, I wonder if it is possible to generate a village or town with two separate grammars. Although I already think your work is beautiful, I think it would be really interesting to see a village with a cosmopolitan feel, where two sorts of architectural grammar are coexisting or clashing. Maybe sometimes the gramar of one culture could borrow a phrase or a word from the other.
    Anyway you might find the book interesting.
    love your work!

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    1. Well it is not my idea to call them grammars. These are grammars in the mathematical sense:

      http://mathworld.wolfram.com/Grammar.html

      Anything with a structure can be said to have a grammar.

      Semiotics is a narrower field. It deals more with the decoding and perception of symbols, as grammars are also used to structure communication.

      Like you said, the code that structures architecture's communication to human is not the same code that structures the architecture itself. The connection between these two is very intriguing.

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