Animated cloud, looking for tutorial and techniques

Started by Frank_Art, October 15, 2018, 03:23:53 pm

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Hi all,
I'm looking for tutorial to learn how to animate clouds in Terragen4 and export it as a Flow Maps ... is it possible?
This is the type of effect i'm looking for


For any cloud but "Easy Clouds", you can animate them using a Transform Input Shader between the cloud density fractal and the density shader input. Translation on X and Z will move the cloud layer across the sky, translation in Y will make the cloud appear to "evolve" (the shape will change smoothly, as shown in your example video). For Easy Clouds, we will be releasing a 4.3 update with built-in animation functions in the near future.

I don't know what a "flow map" is, but you won't really be able to export the clouds at present. We have in-development OpenVDB export, but you'd just end up with a series of VDB files I believe. Which might be a challenge to do anything with in another package (depending on its volume handling capabilities).

What is your end goal?

- Oshyan


Hi Oshyan,  thanks alot for your answer:)
My final goad is to do an animated skybox for game, if I can export clouds as VDB I maybe will be able to create those "flowmaps" in Houdini.
Here an example of the effect I can achieve using flowmap , maybe there are others way to get there.


Ah, I see. Well, you can animate clouds in Terragen in a variety of ways (with a licensed version you can animate literally any setting), and could render that out to a sequence of images to load in your game background. Alternatively you can do post processing on a still frame Terragen render in another app as shown in the video. Does your game engine directly support texture distortion via flowmap?

- Oshyan


yes, so probable the best way is to render single frame of some clouds separately with transparent background using render layers and then "animate" them separately using flowmap technique.


Sorry to interject here, but since this seems to be about whether or not TG is good for clouds:

Would it be safe to say Terragen is a good source for "Clouds from Scratch; and one of the most powerful". I noticed a lot of software, including what my friend is using, is sorta based on preset models, somewhat like Easy Clouds. Asking for a friend.

What I gather, and from experimentation, you can achieve pretty much anything you can think of as far as clouds/gaseous stuff, and even noisy water (waterfalls)


I think the best way of thinking about TG clouds, is that the renderer paints a spot where white is in the texture and that texture is infinitely changing over distance giving variation. A lot of software uses a box to define the bounds of the effect, especially dynamic systems, which is great for hero stuff, but with vistas you start to run out of ram, which is where TG excels at mid to far range scenes.

Ariel DK

Quote from: Altenburger on September 09, 2020, 08:27:46 amHi guys,

Newbie here, looking for help with cloud animation. Should I get a licensed version for a full range of options to animate clouds in Terragen? I'm a student (online degree in graphic design), so can I apply for an academic license?


Welcome to the forum! For your cloud issue, YES, you gonna need a licensed version of TG if you are planning to make animations. About your other question, i strongly recommend you, as an advice, to post that concerns in a full new thread in the Support topic, or contact directly with Planetside support here:
hope to be helpful  :)
Hmmm, what version of Terragen does God use?