Terrain - Water, Water Everywhere + Big Brushes

Hi developers,

We’re feeling aquatically awesome enough today to release some water-related updates. We’ve also fixed the bugs reported in the last terrain release thread (thanks for reporting!) and will soon move the new terrain features out of Beta. For now, everyone can enable these new features from the File → Beta Features menu.

Sea Level
It has always been challenging to create level water across an entire map, especially for maps containing islands or archipelagos. No longer! Using the new Sea Level tool, you can create a consistent water level across any area you’d like. If you’ve accidentally flooded your map or want to work on some sub-surface terrain, we’ve also provided the ability to evaporate all the water in a selected volume. You are Poseidon - command the sea!


Layer Cake
The Heightmap/Colormap Importer creates terrain in a thin sheet. This is a good representation of the information present in the heightmap but has some unfortunate side effects (players can swim through water and fall off the world). We’ve now implemented a planned upgrade, allowing imports to be layered. Layered imports can be used to add depth to oceans and then (by switching or removing the colormap) adding a consistent floor to the map. We’ve also added a color mapping for Air (255,255,255) so you can create sub-surface features like caves.


Bigger and Better Brushes
By popular demand, we’ve doubled the maximum size of brushes. All brushes now have a max dimension of 64 voxels. BE WARNED - using a 64 voxel brush with iterative actions (Grow, Erode, Smooth) will be very slow.

We’ve also made the brushes more flexible, allowing diameter to be set independently of height (on the Cube and Cylinder brush) and allowing you to choose a brush pivot point (i.e. how the brush arranges itself around the cursor). These both add to the precision of editing terrain features.

One other small but convenient item… we’ve restored the hotkey for material selection. Pressing ‘Alt’ and clicking acts like an eyedropper, selecting the material you’re hovering over in the UI.


None of this would have been possible without the incredible work of @24RightAngles, @ArmyOfCorgis, @wengawenga, and @St4rst0n3!

Please give us your feedback and feature requests for the future of Terrain below!

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This update is literally amazing!! It’s going to make terrain creation was easier! This is my favorite update! Thanks to whoever helped out on this! Time to go over my favorite parts :triumph::

we’ve restored the hotkey for material selection. Pressing ‘Alt’ and clicking acts like an eyedropper, selecting the material you’re hovering over in the UI.

I didn’t even know we could do this, but it sounds like something that could be really helpful!

One suggestion I think is needed is this.

Ok, time to to make a realistic scuba diving game. I mean, adding depth to ocean may be my favorite update this month!

36 Likes

Great job to the terrain team for pushing out these updates. It’s nice to see terrain having more and more features. Hopefully it’ll motivate developers to incorporate terrain more into their games.

I had a few suggestions with the terrain aswell.

  1. Being able to change the primary and secondary colors of terrain seperately.
    Allow developers to change the primary and secondary colors in terrain materials

  2. Moving the terrain colors to the actual terrain tab, not under the terrain property.
    Put terrain colors under the terrain panel, not workspace

Keep up the good work guys, the terrain gets better and better every update!

13 Likes

Sea Level
It has always been challenging to create level water across an entire map, especially for maps containing islands or archipelagos. No longer! Using the new Sea Level tool, you can create a consistent water level across any area you’d like. If you’ve accidentally flooded your map or want to work on some sub-surface terrain, we’ve also provided the ability to evaporate all the water in a selected volume. You are Poseidon - command the sea!

I love this a lot, because I have been having some problems with the water in roblox studio for a long time now, because it was a bit complicated (for me) and now I’m happy that there is something like this now!

Bigger and Better Brushes
By popular demand, we’ve doubled the maximum size of brushes. All brushes now have a max dimension of 64 voxels. BE WARNED - using a 64 voxel brush with iterative actions (Grow, Erode, Smooth) will be very slow.

We’ve also made the brushes more flexible, allowing diameter to be set independently of height (on the Cube and Cylinder brush) and allowing you to choose a brush pivot point (i.e. how the brush arranges itself around the cursor). These both add to the precision of editing terrain features.

One other small but convenient item… we’ve restored the hotkey for material selection. Pressing ‘Alt’ and clicking acts like an eyedropper, selecting the material you’re hovering over in the UI.

I like this too since when I am making the terrain using brushes, sometimes the brushes are not the width/height/length I want them to be and are not the shape I want them to be so I am happy to see that there is a way to change it now.

Layer Cake
The Heightmap/Colormap Importer creates terrain in a thin sheet. This is a good representation of the information present in the heightmap but has some unfortunate side effects (players can swim through water and fall off the world). We’ve now implemented a planned upgrade, allowing imports to be layered. Layered imports can be used to add depth to oceans and then (by switching or removing the colormap) adding a consistent floor to the map. We’ve also added a color mapping for Air (255,255,255) so you can create sub-surface features like caves.

I wanted there to be layers in studio for a while now because in some of my projects I need it, and I can not think of an easier way to make layers than this! I personally think that this was a great idea and I can’t wait to see it in action.

In conclusion I think that all of these features are great and I can not wait to use all of them in some of my projects and builds!

2 Likes

This is such perfect timing. I was just looking for a sealevel sort of plugin. Thanks for taking all of our feedback and acting so quickly!

Is there any documentation out there for “layer cake” heightmaps? I did a quick search online and didn’t find much.

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I was waiting for this in a long time! I have a map that got ruined because of a mistake with water, but now, I should be able to fix it with this new feature, thanks!

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OMG Thanks so much, it makes my life so much easier to paint now! Before, I spent hours trying to paint my terrain!

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These new tools look awesome, It’s always good to see new improvements in the terrain feature. As well as that it’s great how you have all used our feedback in making these new tools and I really appreciate it!

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I was very confused when I woke up this morning when I was going to edit my terrain :smile:

This is outstanding. Terrain editing on a large scale has certainly gotten easier. That said…

Is there any publicly available announcement in regards to allowing the water material on all BaseParts? Seeing that one aim was to resolve issues with water as well as the traction my thread requesting water as a material for parts has gained in its lifetime, I have some reason to believe that this work is planned on a level slightly higher than “It sounds handy, but that’s about it”.

4 Likes

In my opinion, being able to separately change terrain color (color zones?) would be a nice feature that would be extremely useful.

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What a great long needed update, for a person who uses terrain for most of his builds, I really appreciate the abundance of terrain updates for studio, greatly appreciated!

I was just messing around with the new tools and I ran into a couple of bugs that really threw me off at first.

1) The “Region” panel doesn’t automatically create a scroll bar.
Basically when you open studio, if you already have the Terrain Editor enabled, it just assumes that the Fill panel is big enough to view its contents and won’t create a scroll bar. So if you have something above it, like I do in the screenshot below, or if you just have a tiny screen, you won’t be able to scroll down and see the full contents of the panel. This is especially problematic with the Fill tool since it requires you to press “Fill” in order to use it.


It is worth noting that it does create a scroll bar if you update the size of the panel (i.e. just sizing it up and down until it realizes that it needs to create a scroll bar), but if you switch to any other tool, whether it be in Edit, Generate, or even within Region itself, the scrollbar will either reset or take on whatever property the other panels have. Below I have a few examples showcasing these strange properties.

Examples of strange scroll bar behavior.

In this, I switched from “Region” to “Edit” and back to “Region.” Since Edit doesn’t normally have a scroll bar, Region took this property so I was forced to update it in order for it to properly create one on its own.

In this second example, I switched from “Region” to “Generate” and back to “Region.” Since Generate had a much longer scrollbar than Region, Region took that property. Except in this case, the scroll bar will always be much longer than what’s necessary regardless of what size I make it, so I can always scroll way past where the Fill button is.

In this third and final example, I simply selected another tool within Region and switched back to Fill. In this case, the scroll bar completely went away and didn’t properly update. On top of that, it seems like the scroll bar actually goes past the bounds of the panel itself as it gets cut off by the command line below it.

2) Merge Empty doesn’t function normally.
I’m honestly not sure how to title this point. But basically here’s what I found: by default Merge Empty is on, despite the toggle saying the opposite. Trying to turn it it off will actually do the exact opposite


If it was just a weird visual bug, then yeah turning it off would result in it just merging the terrain again. But instead at this point the toggle completely broke and I had to select another tool to get it to reset.

3) The Fill tool doesn’t generate its own selection box.
This may be intended, but even then I feel it’s worth mentioning. Say I make a selection and then I select something like Resize or Rotate for whatever reason and then I go to Fill, it’ll use the selection type of the previous tool I used as seen below.


This can be mildly frustrating since typically when I use any sort of Fill tool, I’d only really want to make selections to fill while switching to the other transformation tools to make whatever adjustments I need to make. Not only that, but I was really confused when first booting up studio as to why the Fill tool wasn’t doing anything. This may be a matter of personal preference, but I feel as though it would greatly benefit from having its own selection tool. That way it’s easier to understand for people who are just trying these tools out for the first time.

But even with those in mind, I’ve been having so much fun with these tools! I’m super excited to start messing with terrain again.

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These new controls are fantastic! Excited to see what kind of creativity can flow from these new updates (pun intended?) Overall yeah, props to the team for making this. The sea level feature will make my life easier from now on when trying to create large bodies of water.

I’m also really excited to see more builds in the future using terrain and making it look awesome. This with grass decorations will make some really really neat stuff I predict.

Yess roblox finally re-added sea level, long been missing since old blocky terrain tools was removed.
I think now roblox really should re-add a mountain creator tool, would really speed things up when trying to create some hills or mountains.

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Better rock material! the rock material roblox is using is extremely unrealistic,you really don’t find those triangles in nature,maybe something a bit smoother,or maybe a new material that can be used other than rock,maybe a different type of rock? perhaps shale/dolomite/schist/tufa or whatever,anyway,different rock materials or updates to the rock material would be great!

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Great update! Looking forward to some more water based games!

Poor @Quenty who had to script the water level stuff on WFYB😶