Improving and Exporting a Mars FBX based on MOLA data

Started by mystyphy, August 14, 2021, 09:20:24 AM

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Hi, I'm new to Terragen, just found it today, started playing with it and I'm kinda lost. 

So far I've been able to generate a Mars based on MOLA data that looks pretty good. 

What I'd like to do is generate terrain to create more detail based on the MOLA data (i.e. fake more detail) so that I can zoom in to the planet and get close to the surface.

I then want to be able to export this as an FBX model I can take into other apps. I'm expected a model of around 700 million to 2 billion polies.

My question is: How do I control the number of polies the planet is in Terragen? I know how to do it in other software (Blender, World Creator, etc.) but any time I export from Terragen I get a 16k FBX file. Can someone point me in the right direction or tell me that the software isn't meant for this?

Thank you!


Exporting objects from TG is a bit rudimentary right now. To control polygons, you use the MPD detail of the render. 

Then I would use MeshLab to doctor it, remove duplicate faces and vertices etc.


FBX seems to be a load option in Meshlab, but the .fbx output from Terragen always crashes Meshlab for me. I'd suggest using .obj - it's more reliable and there are more editing options for it.


Perhaps another question might be, 'Why export out of Terragen?'. Perhaps the answer here is to remain inside of Terragen, instead of trying to get a dense model out ?
Just a thought.




That's a good question, but you might want to export the terrain for many reasons - you'd have more control setting a complex camera or model animation in another package than Terragen.
You don't have to export such a dense terrain to animate to, just reduce the micropoly detail or the resolution for the micro export (they do the same thing)


How small a resolution? I always rendered at small resolution 400x200 but to not get a 2gb plus terrain i had to drop MPD to like 0.1 or 0.05 for a low poly terrain.


That's interesting, do you export with a top down ortho projection? I usually export at 1024 x 1024 resolution (a habit I've got from rendering texture maps at powers of two, but shouldn't matter I guess) with a MPD of 1 - and that usually gives me a file around 450mb, which boils down from to about 150 mb after a Meshlab delete dup verts and faces.

If I need a low poly preview, I'll drop the rez to 256. If I need more resolution, I'll tile the terrain, but usually in 1024 rez tiles.


I do often use orthographic, but not for rock exports which seem to act the same save for the random holes in the backside where I think it approximates things a little more where it can't see.

I'll have to dink around with this cause dropping resolution seems like it would be quicker.