Note: This post was originally written on May 22th 2019
It has been a few months since the did a project on Houdini. I wanted to go back to it so I do not loose the skills I have and also to improve what I already have. I decided to create a fencing tool since it’s a good starting point and actually a very versatile tool that could help us build levels faster (more on that at the end of the post).
I wanted to be able to draw a curve and generate a fence from it
I wanted the curve to conform to a terrain
- I wanted to be able to control the fence appearance
What I Did
To achieve this, I had to design two different systems:
One to create a portion of the fence itself with a control panel that would later be used for controlling the digital asset.
- Another one to draw a curve and generate the fence from it.
During today’s Personal Development Time, I was able to create both system, however, I didn’t have time to make the fence look appealing with many controls over its appearance.
I faced some challenge over the control of the normals and the fence orientation when ray casting it to the heightfield. Also, the ray casting created a very noisy result at first, so I had to change my approach to keep the input as simple as possible to make sure it was as clean as possible.
I want to create a great digital asset for fence generation with multiple fence styles and controls
I want to add randomization of instances when generating the fence so not all sections look the same
I also want to see how I can include texture automation and see if I can integrate substance designer
I would like to make it compatible with close curve system and open ones (currently works with open)
This tool is the base of many other potential tools:
Replacing the fence with shelves and we can create the interior of shops and libraries very quickly
Replacing the mesh with lamppost and we can quickly dress the side of a road
Replace the fence mesh with houses and we can easily create streets and neighborhoods
This will need more work but I believe I can create from this tool a bridge system