L3DT documentation
Large 3D terrain generator

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About L3DT

What is L3DT?

L3DT is a Windows application for generating terrain maps and textures. It is intended to help game developers and digital artists create large high-quality 3D worlds.

Modus operandi

L3DT is a general-purpose terrain generator that supports several modes of operation:

  1. Automatic: If you want to make maps automatically, you can set a few general parameters to describe the map you want, and then use the calculation queue wizard to finish your map for you.
  2. Manual: You can manually edit your map using brush tools, to get everything pixel-perfect.
  3. Design: L3DT also allows you to design the terrain map using a high-level 'design map', which sets out the general shape of the terrain and specifies the locations of various overlays like mountains, volcanos, etc. When L3DT generates the terrain, based on your design map, you get the features you want without having to build it all yourself.

The last mode is unique to L3DT, and allows users to design and generate maps with ease. For an example of this in operation, please consult the fjord tutorial, in which a map is designed from scratch.

What does it do?

Take the visual tour of features »

L3DT does quite a lot. A brief list of features would include:

Generating and editing heightmaps

Generating textures, light maps, bump maps, etc.

Calculations and optimisations

  • Support for multi-core processing.
  • An automatic disk paging system that supports heightfields up to 128k × 128k pixels in size (16 gigapixels) and textures up to 4M × 4M pixels (16 terapixels). Want to make megatextures? No problem!
  • An automated calculation pipeline that allows you to queue-up some or all of your calculations, set the relevant settings, and then walk away while L3DT does its thing. No program baby-sitting is required.
  • A batch generation engine for making multiple map projects automatically.

File formats

3D display

  • Real-time 3D rendering and editing of maps in the Sapphire plugin, as well as support for Terragen, VTP Enviro, and other popular renderers.


  • A graphical interface for performing custom calculations by connecting together multiple 'filters'.
  • An extensive plugin API ('Zeolite') that allows developers to directly access L3DT data, perform calculations, load or save files, add new file format options, etc. The source code for many examples are provided.
  • Support for scripting using the Python and ZeoScript languages (via the cdPython and ZeoScript plugins).

User support

Please note that some of these features are only available to registered users of L3DT Professional. Please consult the comparison of editions page.

Who's responsible for all of this?

The name's Aaron Torpy, and I'm the proprietor of Bundysoft.

More questions?

l3dt/about.1294887558.txt.gz · Last modified: 2017/08/31 07:26 (external edit)
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