GroundWizTM RTS


GroundWiz RTS Version 2.5:
The new version of GroundWiz RTS brings the following improvements:

  • Terrain generation and vegetation planting were optimized for optimal performance by using multi level caching. Main GPU and CPU procedural algorithms use data caching via textures and data arrays.
  • Terrain displacement detail is added via projected grid that avoids massive hardware tessellation (previous version was exclusively dependent on hardware tessellation that used more GPU resources)
  • New algorithms for realistic ground textures & displacement (rock, dirt, sand). New procedural ground shaders combine artist created & real-time procedural detail to bring high resolution grounds and also non-repetative far views at the same time.

Here is the debut trailer of Altitude0: Lower & Faster (extreme air racing game), which uses GroundWiz RTS technology.

GroundWiz RTS:
Presenting GroundWiz RTS technology and Benchmark tool.
This game showcases GroundWiz RTS (Real-Time Shaders) technology. At minimum, DirectX 9 compatible graphics cards are required. If DirectX 11 is available, terrain rendering will also use displacement, tessellation and higher detail ground surface.


What is GroundWiz RTS (Real-Time Shaders)?

GroundWiz RTS is a set of procedural shaders for rendering nature in real-time applications. GroundWiz RTS is optimized for parallel computing using multiple CPUs and GPU shaders to achieve real-time performance.

GroundWiz RTS consists of Planter and Terrain Map.

GroundWiz RTS Planter

Since version 2.0, GroundWiz RTS supports procedural nature planting via GroundWiz RTS Planter.
It brings highly advanced procedural planting (instancing) to real-time environments.

GroundWiz RTS Planter is all about procedural planting: as the scene is explored, plants are procedurally created (planted) over the terrain and discarded when not needed anymore. This way the detail can be enormous - billions of instances of different sizes: from big objects (ex. trees) down to the smallest detail (ex. pebbles) can all be handled by the same Planter routines.

Planter supports numerous adjustable standard controls and over 30 different planting constraints. More...

Planter uses graphics card (GPU) to speed up procedural planting (shader version 3.0 and higher). On the other hand, GPU shaders are also used to display planted instances: with the use of proper LODs (level of detail objects), it is possible to show many hundreds of thousands of objects in real-time.

All of GoundWiz RTS settings are compatible with GroundWiz Planter plug-in for 3ds Max. Some instances can be planted in 3ds Max plug-in and imported into GroundWiz RTS while others are procedurally planted for unlimited detail. . For a description of GroundWiz Planter plug-in settings, see online manual.

GroundWiz RTS Planter in real-time flying over Alpine mountains

GroundWiz RTS Terrain Map

GroundWiz RTS Terrain Map is used for rendering procedural 3D terrain materials in real-time.

GroundWiz RTS Terrain Map uses fractal algorithms to generate terrain materials and mimic real-life terrain.
The core building block of terrain map is ground layers that are combined in a tree like structure where each layer has its own set on limitations (constraints).
User controlled constraints include slope angle, height, direction, vertex color, image masks and most importantly randomness factors. Based on these parameters, transitions between layers are calculated.
Each layer can also have its own set of image maps: albedo, specular, bump. These images are especially useful for close-ups to bring real-life photo detail to the terrain.

Procedural displacement tessellation (new since GroundWiz RTS version 2.1) is supported on DirectX11 compatible graphics cards. This feature adds a great amount of terrain detail, which will be extra noticeable on rocks and mountainous terrains. The amount of tessellation is user controllable and should be adjusted to the speed of graphics card.

Another important aspect is procedural terrain roughness - controllable per ground layer. Terrain roughness affects lighting via normal mapping and also layer distribution.

Optimized routines of GroundWiz RTS Terrain Map make it possible to render a big layer tree in real-time (16 layers and more). The current version is optimized to use graphics cards that support Shader Model 3.0 and above.

GroundWiz RTS Terrain Map is derived from and compatible with our GroundWiz plug-in for 3ds max.
If you are a 3ds Max user, you may download a free version of GroundWiz Lite and test GroundWiz yourself. GroundWiz RTS can load 3ds max scenes and results will be very similar if not identical.

The video shows compilation of animations captured from real-time flyovers over coastal terrain
- recorded using Radeon HD 5850 running DirectX 10, resolution 1920x1080.

What is GroundWiz RTS meant for?

GroundWiz RTS is meant for:

  • Automatic creation of ground materials in real-time applications: game development, visual presentations and animation industries.
  • Large 3D worlds where manual terrain mapping would be very time-consuming if not impossible.
  • Procedural self-modify terrains where shape of terrain is not known in advance.
  • Ideal for online content and cases where storage space is scarce - GroundWiz RTS Terrain map requires very little data for generating terrain maps.


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