New architecture for terrain generation through 2D height field volumes, with new SOP nodes and support in the viewer and mantra renderer.

  • Procedural terrain generation.

  • 30+ dedicated nodes.

  • Straightforward worflow, similar to image compositing but in 3D.

  • Masks limit operations to certain areas.

  • Viewport visualization of 2D height fields as 3D surfaces, and masks as surface tinting.

  • Dedicated Mantra procedural for rendering.

  • Very fast: hardware accelerated via OpenCL.

Foliage by SpeedTree, textures and small rocks by Allegorithmic and Quixel


Mask inputs to limit effects to certain areas. Generate masks from free-form curves, texture maps, or the output of other height field nodes.


Import height field data from standard GeoTIFF and several Lidar formats.


Project 3D models into the height field, or paint height free-form.


Powerful erosion models.


Output height fields as polygonal surfaces, 3D volumes, or image maps.


Works with existing Houdini tools:

  • Because height fields and masks are standard Houdini volumes, you can use existing tools such as volume SOPs and Wrangles to edit them.

  • You can import height fields into COPs and use compositing nodes to edit them.


Examples in the Terrain FX shelf tab.


Native output to game engines.


Fully tile-able, game-friendly terrain material and specialized shader for VFX use.


Native integration with dynamics and crowds.


The new SOPs have names starting with HeightField.


In the ⇥ Tab menu, you can abbreviates prefixes and initials in node names. So you can type "height" or just "hf" instead of typing "height field".

For example, you can type "hf mbo" to select Height Field Mask by Object.

What was new in Houdini 16