Maybe there are some artist types who love staring at textures all day. Me? I’m a programmer, and I like staring at code all day.
So today I have mostly been staring at textures all day, and it’s boring. Worse than that, I am trying to get textures into the correct format for my new favourite terrain shader – MegaSplat. It’s an amazing shader, capable of handling up to 256 textures. That sounds amazing, but getting the textures into the correct format can be a chore. So I also bought Channel Packer from the Unity store – a simple little plugin that will pack 5 textures into 2, ready for use with MegaSplat. Then I need to create texture arrays with these converted textures. I’m also converting them to 4k where possible, which may become an option in-game.
I’m going for reasonably full PBR support, so that means diffuse, height, AO, normal and smoothness. I’ve got most of the textures I want, apart from some plain grass textures which I will probably get from GameTextures.com – their textures look really good. The idea then is to feed these into a texture graph from MegaSplat that will procedurally texture my terrain. Nothing fancy initially – a lower layer of sand blending into grass, with rocky bits where the terrain is steeper. Here is an example of a rocky ground texture.
Hopefully in a few days I will have the textures converted and a texture graph up and running. It’s really a very cool system that should allow for quite realistic texturing to be done automatically. I don’t really enjoy texturing terrains, and I’m not very good at it either, so anything I can do automatically is very welcome!
And talking of automation, I’ve got another new Unity plugin on my radar. This one is called CScape and only came to the Unity store yesterday. It looks very powerful and will be a great way for me to create the MegaCity island I have planned. At the moment the cities are completely flat, which is not ideal, but I’m hoping the plugin will evolve to create some amazing looking cities.