Quick Start

From Terragen Documentation from Planetside Software
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If you really want to get started quickly, here is a short step-by-step run-down of how to get a basic scene in Terragen 2. You can find more complete details on how to create a nice, basic scene in "Creating Your First Scene". These are essentially the same steps that we go over in that document, however no explanation or detail is provided here. It is simply a series of steps to arrive at a basic scene for those who want a very quick overview and who prefer to experiment on their own from there. Feel free to explore and experiment but if you get lost don't forget that "Creating Your First Scene" offers a lot more detailed help and instruction.

  1. Start Terragen 3
  2. You will see a default scene with gray terrain and no clouds
  3. Switch to the Shaders layout
  4. Click on Base colours
  5. Click on the Color tab
  6. Change each color to a shade of brown by clicking on the colored square on the far right and selecting your color, then clicking OK
  7. Now click Add Layer above the node list and select Surface Layer
  8. Click on the newly created surface layer
  9. Using the instructions above, change the default white colour to a greenish-yellow to represent grass
  10. Click on the Altitude constraints tab
  11. Turn on Limit maximum altitude using the check box, then set Maximum altitude to about 300 or until you start to see brown mountain tops in the preview
  12. Click on the Slope constraints tab
  13. Turn on Limit maximum slope and set the Maximum slope angle to about 25 with the Max slope fuzzy zone at about 10
  14. Click on the Coverage and breakup tab
  15. Set Coverage to 0.7
  16. Set Fractal breakup to 1.0
  17. You may want to do a test render to see how things look; press F3 (Windows) or Command-1 (Mac) to bring up the Render window then press the Render button
  18. Add a Snow-like surface layer using what you have learned from adding the grass layer above (hint: use minimum altitude restriction instead of maximum altitude)
  19. Switch to the Lighting layout
  20. Click on the Sunlight 01 node to adjust the sunlight settings
  21. Use the Heading and Elevation controls to find a lighting angle that you like – specifics will vary depending on the camera angle you have chosen
  22. Switch to the Atmosphere layout
  23. Click on the Add Cloud Layer button above the node list and select Mid-level: Altocumulus (3D/Volumetric)
  24. Do a render test to see how your scene is progressing
  25. Click on the newly created cloud layer
  26. Increase Cloud depth to 500
  27. Reduce Coverage adjust to about -.25
  28. Render your scene again to see how the clouds look and if you are satisfied, move on
  29. If there is noise in your cloud shading, click the Quality tab in your Cloud layer node
  30. Increase Quality to 1, if not already set
  31. Go to the Renderers layout
  32. Click on Full Render in the node list
  33. Set Image width to 800 and Image height to 600
  34. Do a final render
  35. Save your image with the Save button

The Node List is a part of the Terragen interface that shows a list of nodes along the left side of the application window. The Node List generally shows only those nodes that are relevant to the current Layout (e.g. Terrain, Atmosphere). It sometimes includes buttons or other controls that are specific to a particular Layout as well. The Node List is hierarchical and each level is collapsible.

A single object or device in the node network which generates or modifies data and may accept input data or create output data or both, depending on its function. Nodes usually have their own settings which control the data they create or how they modify data passing through them. Nodes are connected together in a network to perform work in a network-based user interface. In Terragen 2 nodes are connected together to describe a scene.