Honours Project - the Idea

By Greg Goltsov

Due to the very high frequency of updates to this blog, I thought it would be cool to include updates on my Honours Project. This way, there will always be something worth writing about and, hopefully, showing.

What's the idea

I've always been fascinated by procedural generation of game-centred content, and especially landscapes. I mean, Minecraft, of course, brought it to the mainstream along with voxel worlds, but the sheer idea that a whole city can be generated from start (layout, districts) to finish (geometry and buildings) is truly inspiring for me.

I've noticed that people have been mostly centred on the kind of modern, high-rise "glass and concrete" cities, which seem a bit generic at times. So, living in Scotland I grew to truly appreciate the nice, old, brick architecture - Edinburgh being my main inspiration. This has always been in the back of my mind, creating a generator of small Edinburghs - given the landscape, creating the whole old centre from ground up, developing ways to describe the architecture on the way.

Inspirations

My first big "wow" moment came, of course, after watching for the first time the demo of the very realistic and nice-looking Introversion's Procedural City Generator:

There is something really cool about being able to see the algorithms work step-by-step, as opposed to them simply hanging and then giving the final result.

Another interesting bit of technology that's been developed in this field is Greyscalegorilla's City Kit. It's a Cinema 4D plugin that lets you quickly create a city (one of those "glass and concrete" varieties) within the 3D editor. Now, the coolest thing about it for me is its ability to generate cities on non-realistic terrains. Let me illustrate:

Now that's just amazing - procedurally-generated Inception - something that not many other generators really allow, so that might be one of the things that I really want to implement, given I have the time.