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Features of L3DT release 2.5

Important stuff.

Features of L3DT release 2.5

Postby Aaron » Wed Mar 28, 2007 1:17 am

Hi Everyone,

L3DT release 2.5 is spending one last week in the purgatory that is final debug, so I can now give the definitive list of new and improved features for this release:
  1. There's a new 3D renderer, which you can open from the toolbar. Although it's still not quite as fast nor feature-complete as L3DTVi2, it does not have any of those nasty file format-related crashing problems that plague the use of L3DTVi2.
  2. The display rendering of large maps in the main window is much faster, due to a mip-mapping algorithm.
  3. There is more extensive mosaic map support, including options like resizing heightfields, and tools like manual water flooding.
  4. Heightfield erosion modelling is stronger and more realistic.
  5. The RAM requirements have been reduced for exporting maps when resizing (e.g. exporting 4k x 4k map as 4097x4097).
  6. A copy/paste feature has been added for cloning parts of the map.
  7. An 'Export to Torque Atlas' option will also be available for TGEA users. This requires a plugin, which will be included by default for users who purchase L3DT for Torque from GarageGames. For users who purchase L3DT Professional from Bundysoft, the plugin will be freely available as a separate download (installation takes about 3 seconds). Note this plugin is still being debugged.
  8. There is also a new variable-precision compressed heightfield format option (HFZ), which can give better accuracy than HFF/TER, or smaller file sizes, or both (depending on desired precision).
  9. Penultimately, there are additional heightfield effect options, such as smoothing and inflation (see 'Operations->Heightfield' menu).
  10. And finally, there has been some mild re-jigging of various interface elements, following feedback from users.
Those are the main visible changes, but the majority of the improvements in L3DT v2.5 are bugfixes, plugin API improvements, and general architectural improvements. These changes pave the way for the more flashy features coming in future releases, like multi-core support (partially included in L3DT v2.5), river modelling, custom map layers, custom terrain algorithms, an 'undo' option, manual heightfield editing, and so on. Of these, the first cab of the rank will probably be river modelling, as I've been making some hay in this field already (see here).

Anyway, if you'd like to see a more detailed list of changes, please consult the v2.5 development plan.

Best regards,
Aaron.
Last edited by Aaron on Tue Apr 03, 2007 7:29 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Aaron
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Postby demi » Wed Mar 28, 2007 7:44 am

Nice stuff Aaron. You have done a remarkable job on this and deserve a big thumbs up.

:)
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