Houdini Engine for Unreal - Version 2

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Hey guys, I'm having a pretty detrimental issue with Houdini Engine v2 right now.

I'm working on a large-scale environment processing tool for a project, for which I'm using PDG and world composition functionality in Unreal Engine. I've already had a lot of bugs and crashes with the earlier betas of HEv2, but the latest build ironed some of those out.

Now, I've done a week of extensive testing and I can't figure this one out: Whenever I try to bake my environment into world composition levels (using the 'Unreal World Composition Prepare' node), either the levels don't show up at all or they show up without the landscape / heightfield component. I'm following a somewhat similar setup to the Procedural Desert tutorial by Simon Verstraete.

I've tested this in a normal SOP-level HDA as well and with a simple setup, that one works fine. I've ruled out the possibility of it having to do with incompatible resolutions (the SOP example uses the exact same 4033x4033 heightfield) or any incorrect attributes (again, exact same as the SOP HDA).

Anyone with the same issue, or is this a known bug?
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JvK Artwork
Hey guys, I'm having a pretty detrimental issue with Houdini Engine v2 right now.

I'm working on a large-scale environment processing tool for a project, for which I'm using PDG and world composition functionality in Unreal Engine. I've already had a lot of bugs and crashes with the earlier betas of HEv2, but the latest build ironed some of those out.

Now, I've done a week of extensive testing and I can't figure this one out: Whenever I try to bake my environment into world composition levels (using the 'Unreal World Composition Prepare' node), either the levels don't show up at all or they show up without the landscape / heightfield component. I'm following a somewhat similar setup to the Procedural Desert tutorial by Simon Verstraete.

I've tested this in a normal SOP-level HDA as well and with a simple setup, that one works fine. I've ruled out the possibility of it having to do with incompatible resolutions (the SOP example uses the exact same 4033x4033 heightfield) or any incorrect attributes (again, exact same as the SOP HDA).

Anyone with the same issue, or is this a known bug?

yeah, I have the same issue. I'm using UE 4.26 and compiled the latest houdini engine (with 408) by myself. when you bake out something, if it have some meshes or instances. it can generate the sublevel but without heightfield. Basically it can't bakeout the heightfield at all by using pdg.
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Prefacing this with the disclaimer that I use Houdini and UE4 as a hobbyist, so the requested capability might not be as useful as it sounds in more complex pipelines.

Context:
UE has some interesting things going on at present with landscape edit layers as well as Epic’s landmass plugin (as seen with the new water system in 4.26).

Landmass reads in the height data and can output changes to the landscape as a layer in a non destructive way.

RFE:
Ability to export height-fields as a layer to landscapes.

Ideally I would like to be able to have this workflow.

1. Define the base massing model / blockout of the landscape within UE’s landscape tools. I could also use landmass tools (such as the 4.26 Water system or my own custom designs) onto this landscape.

2. Import the landscape into Houdini as a heightfield (this is already possible) and apply erosion.

3. Export the eroded terrain as a layer onto an existing landscape within UE (so for example in this case as a new layer onto the input landscape).

Current issues:
Currently the only reasonable ways to continue with applying manual changes to the landscape is to unhook it from Houdini (by cooking it as a base mesh).

The Houdini integration isn’t built with back and forth changes to the landscape in mind so its not safe to apply manual changes (or automated processes within UE via Landmass) onto this terrain as it could be lost when rebuilding the HDA.

Other advantages of this RFE:
The key advantage is being able to apply an erosion HDA into a terrain that is defined in UE.

Another would be that you could theoretically apply multiple terrain HDAs onto a single landscape.

For example I could apply a secondary HDA to raise/lower areas of the landscape for foliage or roads and bring these results into UE as a layer.
As it is a layer I can go back and forth non destructively without having to worry about losing manually painted terrain details on another layer.

It would also be possible to create an HDA at the end of my pipeline to generate layer infos for landscape material and foliage purposes.

Since this happens at the very end it would correctly identify slopes and other features on the terrain that might have been manually painted on top of the original eroded terrain.

==

I'm curious to know other people's thoughts on a feature like this. With my brief examination of the plugin I did not see anything that is a significant blocker in making something like this possible.
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@JvK Artwork and @ChinaNoodles I think the best way is to submit the bug with an example HDAs. That will helps the squeaky wheel to get some oil.


Hey @adipamihi, it's interesting to hear what workflows people have regarding landscapes. Is there a need for you to use unreal landscape tools? Anything missing in Houdini? After sculpting terrain in Unreal you can export to file and import it in Houdini as a layer on top. You would only need to calculate the delta between sculped and unsculpted terrain. Some time ago I wrote a tool to speed up some terrain workflows: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ArqavvTEFgs [www.youtube.com] check it you maybe that will give you some ideas
Probably for those type of discussion best thing to do will be to create a separate topic
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