Started by cajomi, May 26, 2007, 03:47:31 am

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I am waiting...........
and waiting...............

I had paided for a tech preview, expecting, that the software will be developed.
I can not see this at the moment. The small list of changes for the last update, a longer time ago, was absolutly not impressive.

Where are the improvements for the usability?
May be here are mostly TG fans, because I did not find much critic about the developement steps, but if you are not blind and look for example at the rero gallerie, you will find many users, that switch back to TG 0.9. That cannot be because it has more power. So, what do you think, what is the reason?
They have problems, because it is new, has changed, and users to not like such changes. They want, what they were used to. Hm, that is right. I have read this here in the forum, similar.
And so, it looks like the leader (Matt) is thinking, that it is only a question of documentation, and he has not to improve the usability.
Please tell me, if it is so.

Johannes Rosenberg
developer of GeoControl
Developer of GeoControl


Please see the thread titled 'Oshyan I have a nagging feeling..'

I too feel impatient, but Planetside have given many assurances that the full version of TG2 will be released this year. Granted that could mean December 31, but if that is what it is, then that is what it is.

I have seen too many software companies rush products into use before they were properly tested to start nagging Plantside to hurry up. ( I am talking about commercial business software as well, not just hobby software). It NEVER works properly, it ALWAYS causes chaos and sometimes misery. I work in the Civil Service in the UK, and I wish I was allowed to give you examples of the kind of problems that are caused  when software is rushed into use before it is ready. My own Department has been virtually crippled by damn near useless IT systems.

Please believe me when I say, late and right is far far better than early and wrong.

I want to be using TG2 (and maybe TG3 & 4) for a good while to come in the future, for me to be able to that, it has to succeed. If it is to succeed, it has to be a winner right off the bat. A flurry of early complaints and bug reports would kill the commercial viability of the project. I believe Planetside are right to be patient and to wait until they know they have got it right. I do not know what kind of problems they face, but I can already see a product which, though unfinished, knocks the spots off it's nearest competitors. That is enough to give me confidence that they will overcome whatever difficulties they face, and deliver what they have promised.

They have said 2007 is the year. I am willing to take them at their word. If come 2008, they have not delivered, that will be a different story, but until then my feeling is that we all back off a little. This kind of pressure from User groups forced Curious Labs into releasing Poser 5 too early a few years back, and it was a disaster.

Please do not make that happen with TG2?
adamans rebellis quod iustus nos


Please, open your eyes. In 5 months one update.

And if you are talking about going to early into the market: The tech preview is in the market. And I am one of those, who do not believe in freeware. So I have given my money to ensure, that the developement will go on. And of course, I expected, that as a licence owner, I will take part at all updates, what means like a beta tester.
So, if this is the cycle of developement, one update in 5 months, that looks, like TG2 is a free time project.
Developer of GeoControl


To be entirely honest with you I don't have many problems with the current tech preview. Absence of sub-surface scattering, and proper water are pretty much all that truly bug me. Oh, and the occasional crash on a highly-detailed scene, but since I work in an industry where repetitive saving is essential, it rarely affects me at all.

As for render times, I barely notice them, since I have a seperate computer used for rendering. What exactly are the problems you are having with it?

I agree that only one update in 5 months is not a great sign of progress, but you must remember that they wouldn't want to dump untested code on people who have paid for the privilege. It's a lose-lose situation. They test everything - and people complain - they release quickly - and people complain.

Harvey Birdman

May 26, 2007, 05:30:44 am #4 Last Edit: May 26, 2007, 05:32:36 am by Harvey Birdman
I too paid for a technology preview, and I feel I'm getting my money's worth. I went into this with my eyes open, with the understanding that this was not a complete product, and that substantial development remained.

I have had my doubts from early on that a final product would be released this year. When I look at all the features yet to be implemented/completed/debugged, I just don't see that happening. And I can live with that.

I am concerned that Planetside is setting themselves up for failure by insisting that a completed product will be released by a specific deadline. (Given their track record, it seems that more discipline has possibly been needed in terms of setting deadlines, but I wonder if there isn't too much rigidity about this particular date.) I would be pleased by more frequent updates, but I understand that this can slow the development process as a whole.

On the whole, I look at what I've already gotten vs. what I've paid, and I'm not too displeased. I hope for/expect more in the future, but I'm not going to freak out if 31 December rolls around and I don't have every bell and whistle working. I'd rather give the guys the time to get it RIGHT than pressure them into a premature release.


Hi Harvey,

Quote from: Harvey Birdman on May 26, 2007, 05:30:44 am
I have had my doubts from early on that a final product would be released this year. When I look at all the features yet to be implemented/completed/debugged, I just don't see that happening. And I can live with that.

Just read through your post. Is there a list somewhere that lists all the features that are going into Terragen2? I've never seen a list so I always assumed we would know what's in it when it gets released. So to me I can never understand when people say "oh I don't think Planetside are going to make their deadline and get Terragen out on time". Without an official list of features what's to stop Planetside from releasing at any point in time once the product has become more stable? At the minimum all they have to do is get the things working that are not at the moment, add multicore support, with maybe water transparency.

So to me I don't think people have to worry about Terragen2 coming out by the end of the year, it's just what exactly is going to be in that product at the end of the year.


I am not missing features.
I am missing improvements in the usuage. Simply take a look at the developement in the terragen rero gallerie and you can see, that it is going down with TG. Many users swichted back to version TG 0.9 and the quality of the posted images was better before TG2. The reason for this can not be, that there are not enough features.

If basic functions like using an imported mask for shading need own tutorials, then the usability is very bad and must be improved. And of course, when you need a lot of action for such a simple task, how much time do you want to spend, before you get an image ready to render?
Developer of GeoControl

Harvey Birdman

Reck - Good point. No, I don't have a list of features, I just seem to run into the 'oh, that feature will be implemented/debugged/improved later' quite a bit - translucency, smoothing, correct reflective surface behavior, etc, etc. I'm left with the feeling that there are probably a lot of others that haven't come up in coversation yet. The impression I'm left with is a lengthy list of non-trivial features. I have some small experience with software development and scheduling. I'm just saying that my personal experience, coupled with the impression I get regarding the state of product development and the complexity of the product, leaves me a little dubious as to 31 December 2007.

cajomi - I admit I've been tempted to revert to .9 for some skybox work.


Hay Cajomi, birdman, reck and the rest,

  Humm, first off this tg2 preview is free and why anyone would buy it before it is done is beyond me.  We have so much to learn in this program that it can make your head spin as it is, so getting more features before you have all the rest down is kinda well you know /winks.....

   I am betting the reason why allot of people have gone back to TG is because they do not have the skills to really work with a very hi end piece of software as let me tell you guys, this TGD2 separates the men from the boys and girls as it were and we all know it.
  Meaning most people cannot figure this stuff out, period dudes, so I can see why people have gone back to tg v09.  But only the dumb ones or the ones to impatient to learn or to wait for updates as we all know there are always workarounds for us, so I for one am never going to complain about tgd2 in any way shape or form and feel it a huge honor as they gave it to us as a freebie, WTG guys, so quit bitting the hand that is feeding us /smiles respectfully I say that /bows.  But is wasn't because they wanted more features but maybe some needed less to work this program, it is all relative at the end of the day aye Mates? I have at least 5 friends that went back to TG just because of that fact, not the other way around, they cannot get it, is all guys.  This is high end shit and we should all know it.

  TG is a very simple program and very easy to use, and I like the hard ones myself that make me think and expand my mind, maybe other don't like to think, but I do.
  I will buy the full version when it is done, not before as I see no point in it ATM, but when it is done? I will have it pure and simple.

  The only reason I use TG at all now is for little contests, making sky boxes, making textures for video game engines, and sometimes a bit of rocky textures to my L3DT terrains I make using Aaron's wonderful Terrain program, and you can find a free fun version at: http://www.bundysoft.com/L3DT/ it is for making huge terrains up to I think 400-550 miles square, and has amazing control for the terrains, much more then terragen ever did.  But hand in hand, OMG WOW what a hoot working with the 2.

  Anyway give the dudes a chance they are working hard for us weather we see it or not and they full well know what is and what is not working right so chill, it will all be done, and maybe even by the end of the year.
  We waited for Constructor at garage games for what over 2 years and when they did release? it was free, and they are still working on it, and don't ya know? even when it is free people will bitch about stuff, so take that all into account when we have a feeling maybe it is time to complain.

WHAT 2 DO:  Make lots of bug reports and feature requests and leave it at that, maybe if they like your input enough, they may ask you to join the beta team, but if we complain? I bet we never see that lofty place at all /winks........

Personally I am having a gas with my free copy and cannot understand why anyone would want to complain about such awesome software.  Unless of course you have something better we can play with?  if not? you know the drill /bows.

  OK I said my piece have fun guys and check my renders on renderosity if you feel we are getting the shaft.  It's the artists stupid, not the software that creates the great works of artOnly those that cannot create will complain about everything about the tools they use, at least that is what I have found.  I hope none of you wonderful artist brothers fall into that category, as I am sure none of you do /winks.
I have been winning awards using this software so it can't be all bad /winks

Maylock  aka DeathTwister
Maylock Aromy DeathTwister Stansbury
ATOMIX Productions


QuoteHumm, first off this tg2 preview is free and why anyone would buy it before it is done is beyond me.

Yes, there are much to lot terragen users thinking like you. Far to simple for you to understand, that money can help developĂ­ng, by given the developer more time. So buying can push the developement cycles. Hope you are not one of those stupid people that think, the less something costs, the better and most best is for free.

QuoteI am betting the reason why allot of people have gone back to TG is because they do not have the skills to really work with a very hi end piece of software as let me tell you guys, this TGD2 separates the men from the boys and girls as it were and we all know it.

QuoteIt's the artists stupid, not the software that creates the great works of art.  Only those that cannot create will complain about everything about the tools they use, at least that is what I have found.  I hope none of you wonderful artist brothers fall into that category, as I am sure none of you do /winks.

May be you take a look at the galleries of the artists, who used terragen 0.9,  those who got 20 and more comments or ratings for every render the posted at rero. There you will see, what an artist is able to you with a small feature list but a good usability. And when you get around 20 comments average for an render, you can yourself count to the artists.
After looking at your images, I have got the impression, that you think, you know how to use TG2.
Developer of GeoControl


May 26, 2007, 06:15:29 pm #10 Last Edit: May 26, 2007, 06:18:12 pm by Sethren
Personally i am taking a break from Terragen 2 because i feel that the UI is a bit over whelming at the moment. Trying to take what i do in GeoControl Alpha and place image masks and color overlays over the terrain still gives me alignment and size issues. Perhaps i am just brain dead just not seeing the obvious, i don't know.     ???      I guess i am just waiting for speed improvements (not enough time in the day and my PC overheats easily) and they will come.    ;D    Some type of easy way to create advanced shader materials with a preview window that had a shaded object to see what the material looks like. I want to able to plant a camera and move it around in the 3d preview window by just grabbing it with my mouse controls like in Vue or Carrara.

More thoughts...

Preview window with the option of seeing presets in 3D by terrain, flat plain, cylinder, box, triangle and sphere. ?

Needs a navigation window near the preview window to move the camera around freely with navigation like a trackball feature with roll, pitch, yaw, and a arrow navigation button with zoom, up and down.

Procedural Erosion: Fluvial, Glacial, Alluvial, Thermal, Wind, Talus Biuld up - Hard to achieve, i know.     :-[

Global River Network System - Hard to achieve.

Overhang/Displacement presets with a preview window seeing what they look like at a side view.

Displacements that can fake Tectonics. It is possible as i had done this in World Machine but not a real issue sense i can import heightfields anyways.

Global Mountain Ranges: Small clusters, Long chains, Range/Basin range and Shorter chains. Need a tutorial or some way to get this down.

Procedural Terrain Paint Brush: With 16bit image imports to shape the brush. Also would use procedurals to paint.  ?

Object Painter: Paint 3D Imported objects, Procedural Stones and Clouds.
Can work over a map in orthographic view and can be zoomed in and out to easily
see where the objects are being painted and a overall idea on what scale the user
wants the objects painted on.
Objects can be limited by Elevation, Slope, Mask, Amount, Scattering Size, Overall
Size per object selected.         I WISH!

Soft Shadows.

Island Generator: Clusters, Size, Scatter, Chains etc. Wild Idea!

Presets for Stones like Boulders, Smaller Rocks, Beach Pebbels, River Bed 
Pebbels, Flaky Stones, Lava Rocks, Rigid Stones, Cracked Stones and Smooth     
with some kind of stone shaper editor in a preview window.

Water Shader: Full transparency: Being worked on.
                    Fresnel: ?
                    Foam, Spray and Cresting Waves: The foam we know is possible via TG09
                    Caustics: ?

Global Lake Shader: May just correspond to the River Network System as rivers fill into lakes and also drain into the ocean. Wild Idea!

Improved Crater Shader: Planetary scale, Ejecta size, Overall size, Scattering, Jittering size and     
                                  Scatter, Depth, Height.

Waterfalls: Mentioned in the FAQ.

Additional Fractal Shaders: Like Chipped Slate, Unique Dune Patterns...

Global Weather System types: Presets, Global Cloud Coverage, Hurricane addition with storm 
                                              strength settings (See LunarCell) Tropical Storm addition (See 
                                              LunarCell), Jet Stream addition, Weather systems can be set up by 
                                              use of a flat map representing the planet and drawn by use of 
                                              splines representing global wind patterns in straight direction and
                                              drawn circles representing rotating storm systems: circles can be
                                              moved about the map, multiplied, scattered and resized.
                                              It's like using vector drawing to set up 
                                              weather patterns: I talked to Matt about this back in 2004 i
                                              think and nvseal has got something real nice going with this.

Rainbows: ?
Sun Dogs: ?
Halos: ?

Add new light types: Spot Light, Light Gel, Area Light, Local Volumetric Light, Make object into Light.
Simple Lens Flair System: Nothing over the top like Knoll Light Factory.
Sun: Aura, Color Ramp, Solar Flairs (See Flaming Pear Filter: SolarCell)

Presets representing all of the cloud types known: ?
Cirrus needs to be worked on to look more like the real thing: ?
Cumulonimbus: Needs thunderheads with flattening on tops that turns to Cirrus: Possible with
                     collision detection at a certain altitude.  Wild Idea!

           Wide Angle

Well, this turned into a wish list i guess. I'll shut up now.       ::)      ;D


Quote from: Sethren on May 26, 2007, 06:15:29 pm
Personally i am taking a break from Terragen 2 because i feel that the UI is a bit over whelming at the moment.

Um... and you think it won't be overwhelming with all of those extra features :P?
http://www.terragen.org - A great Terragen resource with models, contests, galleries, and forums.


May 26, 2007, 06:35:49 pm #12 Last Edit: May 26, 2007, 07:47:36 pm by Sethren
Of course it would be. Most of this stuff won't make it in TG2 i would imagine and other factors apply like technically how hard is some of this is to program and it's up to the developers to decide what goes in and what is not currently possible. Just my random thoughts out of control.     ;D   

I know the UI will be cleaned up in the end to a certain degree.     :)

Also there can be more added as long as the UI is done in a intelligent manner like having Drop-down menus, Scroll-down menus and Pop-Up Windows. I am sure there are other ways as well.


I'm coming in a bit late to this disscusion but I would like to give my two cents. Yes the UI right now is not very user friendly but it has to be understood that Tereragen 2 is currently in its alpha state, this isn't even beta testing. We will get what we wnat in time to come it you would like an alternitive to terragen I recomend Vue. Its can't do planets and its not as powerful (in my opinion) but its much more user friendly and it might be what you are looking for.


The world is round... so you have to use spherical projection.


Hi all,

Not entering in the update time line matter I'm writing because I
agree with those who think the usability of TG2 is where it needs
most work on....

TG2 is very powerful and when you get used to the nodes network
you fell the improvement it is, but...

TG1 is much more user friendly. No questions about.

Things I miss in TG2:
- Better camera location/position panel. We move the camera but are never sure
from where to where. And is very difficult to come back to a previous position.
I would like to see were my camera is pointing to and have some easy way to come back.
- Same thing for the terrain browser. It is very small and is difficult to choose a good
location to render. In TG1 of course just uses height fields but at least you see what
you want to see.
- Water control of course, but it is planned to improve.
- The sun positioner in TG1 is much more intuitive. Now you must move the sun and render to
see if it is is the correct place.
- With the current render rate is very difficult to have a proper preview of the scene.
Sometimes (especially in atmospheres) you see something in the fast low quality
render and what you get after 11hs render on the full is different.

there is more but I dont want to bore you all.