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landscape depth map export


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  • Advanced Member

is there a preferred way of exporting depth maps to the landscape.  mine seem to have highly exagerated depth.  im just experimenting with a map in the paint room of 505x505

then exporting from textures/export/ displacement map current layer. depth factor for saved texture is 218  but thats way way exaggerated for unreal.  if i drop the opacity of the layer to zero it starts getting close but still not real straight forward having to eyeball that .

Anyobe done a tutorial on this?  the idea is to right click in unreal and import the depth map and be done



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I do not do make landscapes for Unreal 4 all the time so these are suggestions. I have to go back reread to wrap my head around it again plus you might know some of the below information but put it here to be safe.

Unreal 4 for landscape height maps...  Black is zero depth or lowest point of your heightmap. White is the highest point.  This info is from the Unreal docs.

In 3DC 127, 127 127 is zero height so try exporting your height map as a test using  "Zero level is black Normalized"    Just know that everything black in your grayscale image will be zero depth in Unreal 4 up to the highest point which will be white.

Now In the Unreal Engine 4, 1 unit is 1 cm, so 100 units is 1 meter.    
A landscape at 100% on the Z axis has a total range of 512meters. 25700.0 to -25500.  That is the default import setting, of course the settings of xyz can be changed, you will see in the docs.

Ok now put the two together... black would be zero height, lowest level and white would be 512 meters at the default import settings.

The above and the docs will at least give you a standard to work by for creating your landscape height maps in 3DC.


Just in case------Do not export 8bit greyscale textures, it will create staircasing of your landscape terrain..

I export in 32 bit tiff and use photoshop to covert to 16 bit png for Unreal 4 

I am not sure why you are getting such extreme depth in 3DC when exporting. Can you share the height map?

Link to Unreal 4 docs on this.  Go to the heading " Height Maps" on the first link. Really here the first part under the heading section is FYI, the rest I believe you know already. The second link is good information. 3rd link is for world machine basic but helps to understand scale etc. World machine basic is free for maps up to 513 x 513 maps. The amount of cpu cores are limited per license you buy.





Edited by digman
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I'm also was experimenting with height maps for Unreal Engine recently. You can export height maps from the Sculpt room with "Export Depth Along Y". Then choose .exr for you export file. Of cause, there is some conversion in Photoshop needed: 32 bit -> 16 bit with "Exposure and Gamma" for the method. Then save as a greyscale png.

In Unreal Engine I'm just scaling the landscape by 50% along the Y axis. Maybe it's not exactly accurate but it's kinda works. Try this :)

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