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Acropora 

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A procedural modeler, Acropora combines volumetric modifiers with multi-octave 3D noise sampling to generate detailed surfaces in far less time than conventional surface modeling software. Acropora adopts a less deterministic approach to generating complex, organic shapes by applying sequences of modifiers on large voxelized meshes. The effect is to create an endless, seamless expanse of surface that undulates and changes in a natural way. The resulting meshes contain caves, ridges, overhangs and other natural features that are not possible with height maps. Meshes can then be broken up into segments, with segments further divided into different levels of details.

 

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Just some of the features available:

  • A variety of base shapes including sphere, plane, cylinder, torus and others.
  • Compound shapes (heightmaps, pillars, caves, weaves)
  • Terrain generation tools
  • Cave creation tools 
  • Voxelisation of user imported models (.3DS, .FBX, COLLADA, .OBJ)
  • Mesh export to .3DS, .FBX, COLLADA, .OBJ
  • 3D texture export of voxel volume to .DDS format
  • User-specified volume block and voxel dimensions.
  • Over 50+ volume modifiers
  • Automatic generation of up to 15 octaves of noise (user-programmable settings include orientation, strength, quality, frequency, phase, and range of influence)
  • Extensive voxel and noise editing tools
  • Batch processing
  • Multiple LOD support 
  • Intuitive editing and manipulation of very large meshes
  • Seamless joining of adjacent meshes
  • Mesh decimation, smoothing and tesselation.
  • Mesh filtering and vertex blending tools
  • Ambient occlusion
  • FX effect file support and multitexturing
  • Multithreaded CPU support and GPU acceleration (on supported cards)

 

 

  

 


How it works

 

 

Mesh generation begins with a base geometry and combines complex noise sampling with user-specified shape modifiers to generate a unique density field, which is then “marched” to generate a surface that becomes the solution mesh. Once the iso-surface is extracted the user can smoothen, tesselate, optimise or filter the resulting mesh. Density function evaluation is numerically intensive; therefore, the volume is often broken down into blocks. Mesh operations can be carried out globally on the entire mesh or on selected/activated blocks. Acropora automatically takes care of alignment, ensuring smooth seams between adjacent meshes. GPU support provides realtime response to volume editing. In addition to applying global modifiers the user can create localised regions or volumes, operating in tandem or independent of other regions. Acropora can also be used to test and develop procedural surfaces, that are later applied in shaders for mesh generation in hardware. More info...

 

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Semi-deterministic approach

 

 

Voxel modelling via implicit mathematical expression is by its very nature a non-precision approach to sculpting surfaces. While 3D models can be sampled by fine grain voxels, the strength of Acropora lies in rendering complex, multi-joined surfaces that are inherently difficult using conventional modelling tools: Labyrinthin cave structures, complex organic weaves, believable rock outcroppings, overhangs, and canyons are just a few of the possiblities. The user can control the strength and quality of surface structures.

 

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