GeoControl or World Machine ?

Started by yossam, September 03, 2013, 03:48:51 pm

Previous topic - Next topic


I am going to purchase one of these...............could you fine folks give your opinions and reasons for like or dislike?



World machine for me, has a node based worlflow like Terragen so very easy to get used to.

Always found it easy to get the exactly the shape of terrain I want out of it


I like World Machine also.  The developer is quite active as you can tell by looking at the forum and his developers blogs.

I'm not going to say anything negative about GeoControl since I don't follow that product.
(04Dec20) Ryzen 1800x, 970 EVO 1TB M.2 SSD, Corsair Vengeance 64GB DDR4 3200 Mem,  EVGA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti FTW3 Graphics 457.51 (04Dec20), Win 10 Pro x64, Terragen Pro 4.5.43 Frontier, BenchMark 0:10:02


I like WM for ease of use but geocontrol has better erosion if you can get it out of GC in a way you can use. I always have trouble matching things up in TG. 


They're two very different workflows, so unless you're equally comfortable with both, or more willing to just learn however the "best" app works, then it might come more down to user interface. I wouldn't say that if the two were not fairly well matched. World Machine is is a superb product and my personal choice, but like Terragen it's more procedurally oriented (and heavily uses nodes, even more so than TG really). There is some good ability to create specific shapes and edits (e.g. spline tools), but it's not "painting" a terrain. Geocontrol is very versatile and does have some nice erosion (though I think some combination of WM and GC erosion is really the ideal as GC misses some things WM has in this area too), and it's much more capable in the area of "painting" what you want; it's kind of less technical, more artistic, in a way. Personally I couldn't really get used to its layers interface last time I used it, but I'm sure it's improved since then. Bottom line I think you should try both if you can and if the UI one of "clicks" for you more than the other, then by that one. Feature-wise they're fairly well matched.

- Oshyan


September 23, 2013, 10:04:24 am #5 Last Edit: September 27, 2013, 02:42:33 pm by PabloMack
I need something like this too. With so many SW companies using fractal-generating procedurals in geometry and color/texture, I am wondering how portable these are between software packages. With film going to 4K, using UV-mapped color images to texture terrains seems like it may not be adequate for the job. Using a 4K X 4K UV map in a recent test, I found the detail lacking on that SD project. There seems to be a limit for how large an image SW can handle. PTEX may relieve some of this problem. So this makes me wonder if there are any cases of procedural textures that can be ported between systems. Does anyone have any experience with transportable procedural textures?

Just on cursory inspection, it seems that the consensus is leaning toward World Machine. Though it is more expensive, both systems are very affordable. With more activity going on with WM and a more active forum, I may be getting WM myself.

I would like to get this kind of effect I shot in [Correction] Argentina: [attach=1]


PabloMack - re UV maps - the way to go is to tile the UV's on an object. Even characters have multiple UVs nowadays as many as 8 (upwards) 4k textures to get the resolution needed - 4k is a realistic image size to cope with memory issues etc and combined with mip-mapped texures can provide an good way of managing memory.

Landscapes are no different and you can tile as many UV "tiles" as you want outside the standard 0-1 UV space. In Terragen you could do a similar thing and setup a bunch of projection cameras to get the resolution you want.

Ptex isn't really the way to (IMHO) unless you are prepared to paint absolutely everything...


September 27, 2013, 05:10:57 pm #7 Last Edit: September 27, 2013, 05:25:30 pm by PabloMack
digitalguru: I have used texture tiling quite a bit but not for attempting to do realistic terrains. This is okay for games but it so often looks tiled if trying to make real-looking terrains. I've had mixed results. And I know you can use multiple UV maps on a single model. Nevermind what I said about that. It was late and I wasn't thinking very clearly. Please explain to me, if you would, what standard 0-1 UV space means. I am guessing that the 0-1 just means that coordinates on the image range from zero to one in both the U and V dimensions (where 1 just represents the whole width or height of the image)?

As for evaluating World-Machine, I am somewhat underwhelmed by the software package. Even though it can export polygon meshes, internally it only supports height fields which only work well on shallow slopes. I suppose you could use the tool to rough out an altitude and then place polygon mesh objects in key places where you need them. I read on the WM forum about someone complaining that colors are not exported with the polygon meshes. Hopefully that has been addressed. I would want a tool that would create my terrain's geometry as well as to color it. Especially where erosion is concerned, the coloration should be done before the erosion because the erosion sediment carries the color of the rocks that they came from. Very often they are of different color than the rocks around whose bases they collect. It would be undesirable to have to go in and selectively color all of the sediment after the geometry is produced. It would be much better if the terrain building software did that automatically. Some of the examples I saw don't look very convincing. In particular, some sand colored sediment layered on red and gray rocks. It is possible that some quartz type sand blew in to cover some red and gray basaltic rocks but what I was looking at seems unlikely. It would be better and a whole lot easier if the erosion would take color from the source rocks and use this to make the coloration of the erosional sediment. If this is then exported with the model, you would be done instead of having to do the coloring in some other package.

Here is a marvelous effect which I photographed in NW Argentina which you can't do with height fields. [attach=1]
I also photographed a flock of Parrotlets very near by. [attach=2]