In this chapter the book focuses on procedural textures. It talks about how fractal patterns from simple functions can be combined and altered to create an endless amount of variations of an infinite texture that will avoid issues such as tiling or in some cases resolution constraints of traditional texturing methods that use images.

I do believe however that towards the conclusion where the authors suggest that such work is possible in real time is slightly too optimistic. This is due to the fact that having this technology work in real time is one thing and having it work in a game setting is completely different. As soon as procedural content gets involved much of the CPU/GUP power has to be dedicated to it, which can leave other game systems like AI or complex rendering and post process effects restrained.

I find this paper interesting as it delves deep into how some of my workflow software works. I currently use World Machine from some environment work which uses the same noise functions described in the paper. What I am also intrigued by is the possibility of using these textures to generate meshes. In the past I have experimented with creating assets like large cities with many buildings by using a single displacement texture as well as a box mapping projection – the result was a city block the was several kilometers large that was made up of only two textures!

stefan-misirdzhiev-city-done-2*Personal work based on a workflow similar to the one described above

Cozzi, P. and Riccio, C. (2012). OpenGL insights. 1st ed. Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press.