The output from your project must be saved to a file in order to use it elsewhere. To do this, you must build the output. When you build the output, Gaea will create it at your target resolution. This may take a while to build depending on the complexity of your terrain, and the effects used.
This image shows the Build Swarm building your terrain project.
Over the course of a complex project, saving and managing the appropriate outputs can become a tedious task. Managing outputs for several different nodes, especially those with multiple outputs like the Erosion node, can make it even worse.
The Build Manager simplifies how builds are saved, organized, and managed for future use.
Instead of creating a dedicated "Output" node and then specifying the file to save, you can mark a node for automatic output.
To mark a node for export, right-click the node and select
Mark for Export. You can also use the Graph Toolbar button. In the Layers Workflow you can right-click a layer in the Layers List.
Once a node is marked for saving, it displays this icon underneath the node.
You can choose the file format to use for all outputs, modify a node's output name by clicking on the node's label, choose unclamped (formerly called "Full Range"), and +1 output (where 512 x 512 becomes 513 x 513 — necessary for some game engines).
You can also use the Build Manager for version control and file organization.
Any node marked for export shows up in the Build Manager list. You can also add other nodes directly using the Add Node button.
Each node will expose its savable filename, the format in which it will export, and the different outputs it exposes.
This is the path where the built output will be saved. By default it is saved in a version controlled path in the Builds repository. You can always enter a normal path directly, or pick from presets in the dropdown.
For additional information see the Organizing Builds below.
The output resolution of the build. Higher resolutions give you better detail at the cost of longer processing times.
16k and 32k builds are experimental at this stage and will be optimized over the next several builds.
This dropdown allows you to choose the the format in which your output is saved. You can also select per-node file formats in the node list. If you change the selection here, all nodes will default to the selection made here.
Mesh Formats are not available globally, but must be chosen per-node.
For details on the individuals formats available, see File Formats.
Tiled output is experimental at this stage. It will be stabilized in future updates.
These options govern the mesh output of nodes in the list that are exporting to a mesh based format such as OBJ, FBX, or XYZ.
Gaea can automatically generate multiple LODs (Level of Detail) models for you in a single pass. Each LOD is half of the previous vertex count.
For example, if you are exporting 4 LODs:
This is the vertex count of either dimension. Higher density creates more detailed meshes at the expense of speed and memory. The total number of vertices is the square of the vertex count specifed. So for example, 512 vertex count is: 512 x 512 = 262,144 vertices. The estimate of vertex and face count is shown below the settings.
Force all faces to be quads instead of triangles.
This option is for builds that need to be taken to Unreal Engine, and is turned off by default. Unreal engine requires particular dimensions for ingesting terrains. To meet Unreal's requirements, Gaea will build the terrain at its own fixed resolutions and then faithfully downsample to the Unreal friendly resolution.
Pick the nearest Gaea resolution in the main Resolution dropdown, then select the Unreal friendly resolution in the Resample dropdown.
You can choose to save color maps in RGB, sRGB, or scRGB color spaces.
Increase output scale by +1
Some software require heightfields to be one pixel larger than the normal dimension. For example, 4096 is required to be 4097. Check this option to increase the dimensions by one pixel.
This option is ignored when the Resample option is used.
Save a copy of this .TOR file
Saves a copy of the current .TOR or .TORX file in the build folder.
Close Gaea UI
The Gaea interface - especially when using high resolution previews - can consume enough RAM to cause an impact on high resolution builds. To conserve memory, you can check this option to close Gaea when the build starts.
Open folder after build
Check this option to open the build destination folder when the build completes.
Generate Build Log
Generate a machine and human readable build log in .txt format at the build location.
Beep when done
Checking this option will sound a beep when the build is complete.
The Location field in the Build Manager provides two built-in options for storing your builds.
The first option is the central build repository, which is stored in
Documents\Gaea\Builds\[Filename] by default, but can be changed to any location — even to a local network or an online shared folder with OneDrive, Dropbox, GDrive, etc. This can be useful in team situations.
The other option is to have it stored alongside the file in a Builds folder. So if your file is called MyTerrain.tor, a folder called MyTerrain_Builds will be placed next to it.
In both cases, inside the Builds folder, a subfolder with the build timestamp is created. The build output files, a build.info file, and the .tor copy are stored inside this subfolder.
But these are not the only options. You can explicitly specify a location instead of choosing a template, or you can create your own combinations using an absolute path and variables such as:
[FileLocation]Location of the currently open file.
[Builds]Central build repository.
[Filename]Name of the current file without extension.
[Resolution]Current resolution (eg. 8192).
[Timestamp]Sortable timestamp in
[Username]Your local network identity.
[Machine]Your local network machine name.
[Date]Current date in
[Time]Current time in
[+++]Increments a 3 digit number when an existing path exists.
So you could create your own path template such as:
which would create:
Or something more specific such as:
which would create:
If you encounter trouble writing to network shares, we recommend hosting the share as a drive instead.
Gaea's Build Manager and Build Stack give you low level version control without additional overhead.
The "Save copy of .TOR" option is useful when you want to manage different versions of your actual project file. When turned on, every time your build finishes, a copy of the .tor file in the exact state of that particular build is stored alongside the build output. You can easily go back to any older build state for your file, and save it as new file.
You can also map the folder to almost any modern version control system (Git, Mercurial, Visual Studio Team Services, etc.), or share on a network folder with your team.
For advanced use, see Build Swarm.