How to use more than two material nodes?

I’ve used the black/white mask node set up to paint two materials with normals on my terrain. I want to paint with more than just two materials, but don’t know how to set up my nodes so I can easily switch between the layers corressponding with the textures I want painted. Do I duplicate the existing mask layer or do I create a new mask layer for the other textures/materials and then join it with the other nodes?

Can you post screenshot of your node setup?
Or ideally a .blend file.

You use a Mix Shader node between two Principled BSDF nodes, with a mask image plugged into the Fac on the Mix.

You can also do this to stack and paint multiple materials onto a model, though I believe there’s a hard limit at some point, and it does start slowing down the viewport the more you stack on.

Yes that is what I am using, two BSDFs attached to a mix shader with the mask image in fac but that onlz allows me to paint two different materials and what I can’t figure out is how to plug in more Materials so I can for instance paint with four. Do I still use the mask for the original two materials or create a new one for the other two I add and then how do I join it into the existing node setup?

here it is

You need to use mix node miltiple times. I know that this can be cumbersome, but it is what it is.
You can make a group with multiple mix nodes and make inputs/outputs so you will have something resembling Layer node from 3DsMAX.

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Take a look at this Video by Simon Fuchs with 3 layer blending…also has source file minus the textures…

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I’m wondering if you could get a 4th texture out of that mix. A texture for R, G, and B, mixed on top of a 4th base that’s the null default.

I’m gonna try that out.

edit: damn, didn’t work. I was hoping I could get something out of black and white, but black just gives you a 50/50 mix of one texture, and white 100% defaults to another.

I’ve done something similar with vertex colors:

Mixing layers with mask:

With crazy texture tower:

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Nice!

Though all things considered, I wish there were an easier way to do this that require you to build long and complicated node trees. The game engines have been mixing materials together for their landscapes for years now. Why can’t Blender do the same?

Well, as usual with Blender answer is that material mixing wasn’t a priority for institute / studio and there are no patches from contributors.

You might want to check Material Wizard addon, it seems like a higher level node editor that removes most of low level node management tedium.

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That would make things a little more streamlined. I wonder how it compares to Fluent Materializer?

I have both and find Material Wizard a bit harder to use…just because you really need to understand what nodes need to be added and how to use each of them and what they do when added…Not really a faster way of adding materials but new nodes to build up shaders…Fluent on the other hand is basically a new node that you can add and then if needed add duplicates…a bit simpler to use…

I also use PBR Painter 2.2 that goes with the Layer approach… which will add as many layers as you want…I don’t remember what the limitations are for PBR layers but know that when you do reach a point in EeVee with too many layers it will turn purple ( Cycles allows more layers) …then you can either hide layers and continue or merge all the visible to a single PBR layer and then continue on adding more…you can also bake everything right inside the PBR Painter, which is a nice feature…

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