As a ROBLOX Developer, it’s currently too hard to create a game using smooth terrain. Terrain tools are not effective enough, and cause developers to waste precious time figuring out ways to make their terrain look how they want, while also working on the game. Here’s how I’d say we fix this:
New tools would fix all of our problems. At the moment, we have a small selection of basic tools we can use for editing terrain, but they are nowhere near the scale they need to operate at to fulfill the dreams of developers. For instance, it is extremely hard to make terrain based on a sketched out image. Third Party plugins are needed to create a heightmap, import the map, then convert all the thousands of parts to terrain. All this takes time, when roblox knows d*** well that they could easily implement a heightmap importer. The importer would probably be the number one request on this list overall, because if roblox tools aren’t up-to-snuff, we could resort to L3DT or a 3rd party app to edit our height maps.
Building roads and integrating ground-layer parts into terrain is a pain in the bass. Roads are almost not an option because the terrain rotates parts randomly when you drag. Also, because of the general nature of terrain, the ground is not smooth. This can lead to problems like a higher part count and a less immersive experience. I had to make my entire roadway system an elevated highway because it’s insanely difficult to place parts on terrain, despite the fact that it was a heightmap. It’s sad that this isn’t a thing already
Perhaps the most essential part of a terrain is the way it looks to the player. If the terrain supported custom specular, diffuse, and normal maps made by developers, it would open the door to truly beautiful scenery. An expansion on this idea is to have layered materials, so, for instance, 50% transparency of grass on top of 50% transparency Dirt. Of course, the ROBLOX defaults would still be there, so any developers who don’t want to go through the trouble of creating their own textures could use ROBLOX defaults or another developer’s released presets.
“Fill” bucket tool
This is another one that is sadly not implemented yet. Making water ponds and oceans shouldn’t require third party part-terrain converters or plugins. Not only this, but in the event that the bottom terrain is uneven, most Part-to-Terrain converters don’t check underneath the brick to see if it’s intersecting another cell, so the cell will be replaced. I, personally, wouldn’t tolerate this. I’d use the Regions tool, but the selection range doesn’t go higher than 2048, so I can’t use it to fill water easily. Not only can the fill bucket fill in materials but also textures. Textures are impossibly hard to paint across an entire terrain, and most users don’t know how to script the textures in. But it’s OK because we have the paintbrush tool, right? well… The brush’s max. brush size is not that big, and it lags a lot when painting. It’s tough to even paint a small area with that thing.
I haven’t thought about how Part-Terrain integration could be improved, but sometimes the game quality is determined based on what’s on the terrain, not the terrain itself. The terrain doesn’t allow for easy integration of parts, so it’s very hard for us devs to make cool things with it. This is also a large reason why I wanted my
"Road" Instance implemented (New Road Creation Tools).
I really hope to see all these ideas implemented into the terrain at some point. Thanks!
- I like all of the ideas in this post
- I liked some of the ideas in this post
- I didn’t like any ideas in this post