Join 3,375 readers in helping fund MetaFilter (Hide)

photorealistic landscapes
September 10, 2005 8:52 PM   Subscribe

Terragen is a scenery generator, created with the goal of generating photorealistic landscape images and animations. It is available for Windows and the Mac OS. The newest version was released this week. Be sure and check out the gallery. (previously mentioned)
posted by crunchland (22 comments total)

(more images generated with this software can be see here.)
posted by crunchland at 8:55 PM on September 10, 2005

Color me impressed. Thanks for this.
posted by brundlefly at 8:58 PM on September 10, 2005

I played with this thing a long time ago on a crappy box and lacked the patience for the rendering times -- now that I have a better machine at my disposal I'm looking forward to another go.

Thanks for reminding me.
posted by cedar at 9:05 PM on September 10, 2005

I remember playing around with this back in 1998. It was awesome then, and it still is now. Most impressive is the long awaited importation of 3D models in Luc Bianco's gallery. This feature was first promised in . . . '99 or '00, I think, and is currently in alpha testing for Terragen 2.

Can't wait to play with it.
posted by Ryvar at 9:09 PM on September 10, 2005

This is pretty fun, thanks. Is it supposed to instill God-like delusions?
posted by fenriq at 9:26 PM on September 10, 2005

Wow, even I can do this sort of...I mean I have some terrain...not nearly as pretty as the examples, but better than I would have thought I could do.
posted by duck at 9:36 PM on September 10, 2005

Some of the pictures in the gallery are models of real mountans. I was looking at those, and I actualy forgot that I was looking at CG. I mean really, completly forgot.

The totaly fictional scenes still look fake to me, though.
posted by delmoi at 9:43 PM on September 10, 2005

I take that back, some of the images here do not look fake at all to me.
posted by delmoi at 9:49 PM on September 10, 2005

I'd be blown away by any renderings of Ringworld. Come on, Internet, make me some Ringworld renderings.
posted by rolypolyman at 10:02 PM on September 10, 2005

Cool! New toys!
posted by dejah420 at 10:31 PM on September 10, 2005

I used this for a project in my junior year of highschool, 5 years ago. Nice to see they're making some progress on it. It's still a pretty amazing tool.
posted by deafmute at 11:09 PM on September 10, 2005

cool. but yeah, there's something "off" about all these images. especially the foregrounds are weak because the living detail is missing. the clouds are a bit more impressive.
posted by muppetboy at 11:28 PM on September 10, 2005

Terragen is an incredible program which I've used for the past five years and even liked it enough to register it.

Its fairly easy to make detailed renderings of real-life places, using USGS DEM's, or the high resolution mappings of Mars. Using some of the preliminary images released by NASA after the probe impacted the comet, I was able to render a rough approximation of what the comet's surface would look like.

The software still has a few rough edges, but it was worth the money just for the entertainment value alone, and I'm very excited about Terragen 2, though I'll probably have to get a system upgrade just to handle it.
posted by pandaharma at 12:18 AM on September 11, 2005

cool. but yeah, there's something "off" about all these images.

Sure, you can do better with MAX or Maya, but keep in mind this is a free demo program that costs $99 to register. (I bet you could composite Terragen background and, say, a MAX radiosity/GI foreground with good results.)

The new Version 2 TGD looks even better. Don't miss these or these. I especially got a kick out of this after the Monument Valley post from yesterday.
posted by Enron Hubbard at 4:17 AM on September 11, 2005

I love how we all used this program years ago. I, too, was in that club. Many wonderful hours spent tweaking fake landscapes. That was the life. Really nice to see it's still around.
posted by grrarrgh00 at 4:24 AM on September 11, 2005

I thought Terragen was something to do with the Inhumans :)
posted by kaemaril at 5:12 AM on September 11, 2005

I downloaded this three or four years ago, I think, and it was awesome then. The pictures made by the new version look even more incredible...
posted by ubersturm at 2:47 PM on September 11, 2005

The totaly fictional scenes still look fake to me, though.

funny, that.
posted by joelf at 3:19 PM on September 11, 2005

Wow, thanks for reminding me of this. I, too, used it years ago and despite the shear 'coolness' of it was forced to give it up because of limited computer muscle. In fact, Ryvar, you may have shown me this. (Happily waxing Godlike....)
posted by umberto at 3:58 PM on September 11, 2005

Nice! Thanks
posted by Smedleyman at 5:41 PM on September 11, 2005

How about .. Terragen meets Google Earth?
posted by mitocan at 2:33 AM on September 12, 2005

Terragen is great fun (I've been playing with it for years, too) but somehow all I seem to make is dramatic, glaciated fiords, or barren mars-like landscapes. That monument valley one is fantastic.
posted by Jimbob at 4:14 AM on September 12, 2005

« Older The National Archives recently announced a new pha...  |  "Guantanamo hunger strike stag... Newer »

This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments