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Making terrain without topographical map


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Hi guys.


Whats the best way to make a fairly detailed (1:50/1:1000) terrain without topographical lines?


I know roughly what the site looks like and i want to extract the topo lines to make a stepped physical terrain model.


I've tried 'world machine' but it's not detailed enough, great for making large contours though.


I'm also thinking about game based sandbox modellers like crysis sandbox mod.


any other easy to use suggestions? I only need to extract the topo lines. no need for texture or rendering.




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The easiest way to model a terrain, is via displacement map.


If you know the contours of your site, all you need to do is paint a height map based on these contours, or better yet, extract the height map - by using a tool like Crazy Bump - from an aerial picture, or even from Google maps (terrain or satellite view).


This map, applied through a displacement channel to any - highly tessellated - plane, will create the terrain for you.


Apply your aerial -or Google - picture to the plane as the main color texture and you're done. All is left is to render it.

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unfortunately. i think there is too much urban clutter . It's a beach/cliff terrain but in an urban setting in sydney.


how would i go about painting my own bump map?


I am not talking about a bump map, I'm talking about a displacement map. They look the same, but are used differently. Bump is used to create an optical illusion, whereas displacement is used to actually displace the vertices in Z axis.


The displacement map/function can create a cliff no problem - as long as it doesn't have a negative slope - displacement only work in one axis.

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