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Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Toon Time

We are often asked if Voxel Farm can do a cartoony look. As a side project I decided to give it a try. This is what I managed to do in a couple of nights:


I had been recently exposed to Adventure Time by my kids, the influences are clear. This programmer's art so go easy on me. Also there is very little detail. All materials are solid colors. Only two instanced objects (a tree and a stump) but I think it works for the most part.

You can read a guide on how this was built here. It served as an example of how to create a biome from scratch in Voxel Studio. We will probably expand this project to cover other topics like voxel instances and runtime extensions.

15 comments:

  1. That's pretty rad! I'm curious about the flickering on the terrain though: it looked like holes in the geometry, though the video was moving a bit too fast for me to tell.

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    1. That is just the occlusion culler misfiring for some cells. It is too aggressive. The frustum occluder also misfires in this video, this is when you get the holes right in front of the camera, at the character's feet. BTW this rendering was captured straight from Voxel Studio, which is the dev app.

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  2. Was wondering, what do you think about this?
    http://gamasutra.com/blogs/LeonardRitter/20150423/241777/Towards_Realtime_Deformable_Worlds_Why_Tetrahedra_Rule_Voxels_Drool.php

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    1. I am a big fan of Paniq. I have followed this development on Twitter for a while so I have an idea of what he is trying to do and it rocks. Paniq has a lot going on there. I haven't read this particular article yet.

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  3. Couldn't the same be achieved 10 times faster with a few runs of a simple noise generator? I mean adjusting a few sliders until the terrain looks good instead of creating models of mountains, arranging them, making sure it's tileable, exporting ect.

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    1. No, I think any pure-noise terrain will look like crap. There are not enough sliders in this world. But maybe this is just a phase I am going through.

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    2. I recently read some of your earlier articles. It seems your dream was to create everything procedurally, but from what I have seen of Voxel Studio you seem to have dropped all of your old ideas like creating landscapes with voronoi noise, generating roads and political maps, etc. Is that true or am I mistaken?
      Btw, did you ever try to create terrain with a geologic/hydrologic simulation?

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    3. You may be missing the bigger picture. Like you say current Voxel Studio allows for finer artist input and control, but this is only a necessary step for what comes next. I think this topic merits its own post, I will writing about this in the next few days.

      (I did try hydro sim, but never geologic)

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  4. Cool stuff! Finally an excuse to read through the Voxel Farm Documentation.

    So is the only way to get overhangs now to use instances? (Not counting caves)

    It seems there's now a heavy reliance on user-supplied maps, and further plans for procedural generation?

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    1. err, that was supposed to read "ANY further plans for procedural generation?"

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    2. Correct, this specific terrain component is heightmap based. This is to accommodate this particular type of input, which is fairly common already and easy for people to understand. Like you said, overhangs could be achieved with instances.

      Even if this seems focused on user supplied maps, there is a lot of procedural generation you can achieve with this. For instance you could input maps that are tilable perlin or voronoi noises. This component will allow you to specify different frequencies and amplitudes to the same maps, this produces the same results as noises, with the advantage you are not limited to specific noise profiles.

      Generation of more complex maps is coming, but clearly we had to properly support artist made content before anything else.

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  5. What was the song you used in the video?

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    1. Drop and Roll by Silent Partner. It is in YouTube's Audio Library.

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    2. I'm different from that other anonymous guy. But I searched and listened to that song you said it was, and it is not what I heard in the Voxel biome: toon biome video. Could you be wrong? I think you are mistaken, or it changed somehow? I know this is several months late...

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