I’m working on one of my old addons, True Terrain. I’ve been creating this update for a while, but would love some input.
My previous version had (what at the time I thought was beautiful) an absolute mess of a material node tree:
The inside of these groups, is, to say the least, an absolute nightmare!
However, as part of my ‘streamlining’ for the addon, I’ve decided to also update all the nodes that go with it. Which, I’m hoping will make it easier for people who want to do things, more on the “expert” side of tweaking.
The current UI looks like this:
Which gives some options for tweaking, and then it was up to the user to delve into the material and do more fine tuning there. However, after nearly 1 year of it being live, I’ve had a few (around 20%) message me and tell me (and very fairly) that it’s just too complicated for people new to Blender. so here I am, attempting to make it a lot easier to use.
In this image:
Textures import in the red outlined nodes, and the big green one is where you do all the tweaking. This is far too messy! As I’m also using PBR textures, the options start to make the outcome, no longer PBR.
So I’ve now opted for this:
One node group, which imports all the PBR maps, and a principled shader and gives 2 sliders for adjustment: Roughness and Normal map stength.
Previously only 2 different textures could be blender together to provide a decent terrain material. One for the slopes (usually a rock texture) and one for the flatter parts of the mesh (usually a ground texture). This means, that you can only have a terrain generated with rock face, and ground material.
I’ve now reworked the blending node group, so that materials can be stacked!
This is the ‘ground’ material
Now blended with a rock material
Adjustments to the blend can be made with this:
Which means you can adjust how much ground or rock shows:
And now, due to the nature of the blending node, you can add another material on top:
Of course, at the minute this is messy, but this will be tidied up!
I will post more as I progress, but I’d love to hear input at this point.