Get Started

To get started import the package as follows.

  1. Open a Unity project.
  2. In the menu bar, click on:
    Window > Package Manager
  3. In the package window select MyAssets and the Atlas Terrain Editor package.
  4. Confirm and import.

Initialization of Atlas

  1. Create a Unity terrain.
  2. Assign "AtlasUnityTerrainRenderer" component to it.
  3. This will bind the tool with the terrain
  4. Set up Terrain Layers.
  5. recomended order [ Grass1 | Grass2 | Soil1 | Soil2 | Rock1 | Rock2 | Sand | Snow ]
  6. Right click on the hierarchy window and select:
    Atlas > Unity > Preview Volume
  7. Atlas will render your stamps in real time within this preview volume

Editing Terrains

  1. Select the Preview Volume.
  2. Click edit to preview your stamps.
  3. The terrain will be rendered in two parts:
    • Part 1 = all terrain at lower resolution
    • Part 2 = a smaller square at full resolution
  4. You can move the smaller preview square around to the location you want to work on, by default it will automatically centered on your view.
  5. You can increase/decrease its size by adjusting the "preview render resolution" property

Placing stamps

  1. Select a stamp prefab from the project window.
  2. Drag the prefab into your scene.
  3. Position/rotate/scale the stamp to your liking.

Applying Atlas to your terrain

  1. Select the terrain.
  2. Change the resolution of the terrain height map to your liking.
  3. Click on render or finish editing the preview volume.
    atlas automatically renders when you finish editing the preview volume

Creating stamps from scratch

  1. Make sure that you're in edit mode.
  2. Right click on the hierarchy window and select:
    Altas > Unity > Stamp
  3. Position the stamp somewhere inside the preview volume.
  4. Select your stamp and assign a stamp asset.
  5. Your stamp will now be visible.
  6. If you want you can drag the stamp into your project window to turn it into a prefab.

Splatmaps

  1. Make sure that you're in edit mode.
  2. Select your stamp.
  3. Click + to add a new layer.
  4. Click Preview Mask.
  5. Select one of the available masks as your input.
  6. Select one of the Splatmap layers of the terrain as target.
  7. The order of the targets reflects the order of the Splatmaps you have configured for your terrain
  8. Change the layer properties according to your wishes.
    you can add more layers until you get the desired result

Mask painting

  1. Make sure that you're in edit mode
  2. Select your stamp.
  3. Click edit mask
  4. Adjust the size and opacity of the brush.
  5. Paint by clicking and dragging on the terrain within the bounds of the stamp.
  6. To invert the brush, hold down SHIFT
  7. Click on apply when you are finished.

If you're not satisfied with your results you can always.

Spline stamps

  1. Right click on the hierarchy window and select:
    Atlas > Unity > Spline Stamp
  2. Allocate one of the road stamp assets provided with the package.
  3. Drag a point to move it horizontally.
  4. Hold down SHIFT and LEFT CLICK to add a point.
  5. Hold down SHIFT and LEFT CLICK on the line to insert a point.
  6. Hold down SHIFT and RIGHT CLICK on a point to remove it.
  7. Hold down CTRL and drag to move a point in 3D.
  8. Hold down SHIFT + CTRL and drag to scale a point.

Adding details to your spline stamp

  1. Subdivide.
  2. adds a new node between each node
  3. Smooth height.
  4. averages all nodes height wise
  5. Smooth lateral.
  6. averages all nodes lateral wise
  7. Smooth scale.
  8. averages the scale value of all nodes
  9. Unsubdivide.
  10. removes every other node

Aligning splines with the terrain

  1. Adjust the heightmap opacity to 0 before dropping to floor so that the spline doesn't drop to its own height.
  2. Click on drop to floor
  3. Set heightmap opacity back to 1.

Spline to Mesh

  1. Adjust the mesh properties to your likings.
  2. Click create mesh to create it.

Object Scattering

Atlas has a workflow of scatter rules where each rule is an asset on its own. These rules can be part of a biome that can range from dense pine forests to desert fields or palm trees that are confined to a beach area.

The basic scattering tool is able to place trees, grass and/or prefabs. If you prefer a different scattering tool, Atlas supports it as long as the tool works on default Unity terrain.

Creating a scatter rule asset

  1. Create a scatterer rule asset right click on the project window and select:
    Atlas > Unity > Scatter Rule Asset
  2. Select the terrain.
  3. Make sure that scattering is enabled on the "AtlasTerrainRenderer" component.
  4. Create a new element and assign the scatter rule asset you just created.

Configuring scatter rules

  1. Select the scatter rule asset.
  2. Select the Splatmap layer that you want to scatter on. In this example we'll be using Splat2.
  3. Increase the min slider to finetune the threshold of asset placement.
  4. Optional: block spawning assets by entering a tag that the scatterer should avoid.
  5. Adjust the slope and height sliders according to your wishes.
  6. Set spacing to 50
  7. Enable self culling if you want objects to cull each other.
  8. Add an element to the scatter stack and allocate some big tree prefabs.
    • Set spawn radius to 25 and child count to 15
  9. Add another element with a big tree prefab.
    • Set cull radius to 2
    • Set spawn radius to 7.5 and child count to 3
  10. Add another element with a medium tree prefab.
    • Set spawn radius to 3
    • Set distance scale multiplier to 0.8
  11. Add a final element with some bush prefabs.
    • Set cull radius to 1
    • Set spawn radius to 3
    • Set distance scale multiplier to 0.5

What will be the result of this configuration?

Select the terrain and click render to see the scattering tool at work.
  1. A layer of big trees will spawn at a distance of about 50 meters between them.
  2. Each of these trees will spawn 15 big child trees within a 25 meter radius.
  3. These trees, in turn, will spawn 3 medium child trees within a radius of 7.5 meters.
  4. medium trees will be scaled towards 80 % the original size based on the distance from parent
  5. The medium trees will spawn 3 bushes in a radius of 3 meters.
  6. trees will be scaled towards half the original size depending on the distance from the parent

Detail scattering

In this example we'll be adding grass, feel free to use this for other things like small rocks and so on.
  1. Create a scatterer rule asset right click on the project window and select:
    Atlas > Unity > Scatter Rule Asset
  2. Select the Splatmap layer that you want to scatter on and put it on Splat1 (most likely grass).
  3. Adjust the min and max sliders on the mask to finetune the asset placement threshold.
  4. Adjust the slope and height sliders according to your wishes.
  5. Add an element to the detail stack and add some textures or meshes.
  6. When in HDRP you will have to assign meshes unless you have unlocked billboard grass
  7. Set density value
  8. Click render on the AtlasTerrainRenderer component.

Multiple terrains

  1. Right click on the hierarchy window and select:
    Atlas > Unity > Preview Volume
  2. Atlas will render your stamps in real time within this preview volume
  3. Create a Unity terrain.
  4. Add 3 new terrains using the Unity + button.
  5. Select all 4 terrains and assign the "AtlasUnityTerrainRenderer" component.
  6. Resize the preview volume, position it so that it covers your 4 terrains and enter editing mode.
  7. Place a stamp that spans the entire volume.
  8. Exit edit mode to apply the stamp to all terrains.

Creating your own stamp assets

  1. Right click on the project window and select:
    Create > Atlas > Unity > Stamp Asset
  2. Name your stamp asset.
  3. Insert your textures in the correct slots.

Atlas Unity Terrain Renderer properties

General
export color map when enabled the color map will be exported
export height map when enabled the height map will be exported
export normal map when enabled the normal map will be exported
export splat maps when enabled the splatmap will be exported
use scattering when enabled objects will be scattered based on the assigned scattering rules

Atlas Preview Volume properties

General
preview render resolution resolution while editing terrain, has effects on the performance during editing
auto center automatically center the full resolution square to your view
size preview volume size
this doesn't have to be equal to the underlying terrain size
terrain source the preview volume will copy stats like Splatmap layers and resolution properties from this source terrain
preview accuracy from source copies the resolution settings from source terrain, or set your own accuracy values

Stamp properties

General
size stamp size
stamp the stamp asset that contains your heightmap and masking textures
Mask
power a higher value results in more steepness
edge erase erases the edges
Blend Modes
blend the value will lerp towards target value
min the minimum value will be applied
max the maximum value will be applied
add the target value will be added
sub the target value will be subtracted
Height
opacity global opacity of the mask
power a higher value results in more steepness
cutoff min cuts off minimum value
cutoff max cuts off maximum value
invert inverts the mask
Color
opacity controls overall opacity
brightness controls brightness value
contrast controls contrast value
saturation controls saturation value
hue shifts the color
Splat layer
input allows you to select an input from your stamp asset
target allows you to set the target splatmap to your terrain
opacity global opacity of the mask
power a higher value results in more steepness
cutoff min cuts off minimum value
cutoff max cuts off maximum value
multiplier multiplies the mask value
offset controls overall offset
invert inverts the value

Spline stamp properties

Settings
closed when enabled the spline will be a closed loop
width width of the spline
tiling how many times the stamp will repeat itself along the spline
fade start fades the start of the spline (0 = no fading)
fade end fades the end of the spline (1 = no fading)
quality quality of the spline while in edit mode (out of edit mode the maximum terrain quality will apply)
road blending when enabled the stamp will use its 'road mask' to make intersections possible
Spline to Mesh properties
width width of the spline
max distance between points preferred distance between vertices along the length
max points maximum vertices count along the length
width segments vertex count along the width
tiling amount by which UV will tile
fade start start fade of the spline (0 = no fading)
fade end end fade of the spline (1 = no fading)
edge push down how far the edge vertices should be pushed down
mid push up how far the middle vertices should be pushed up
material material of the mesh which will be generated

Scatter rule asset properties

Splatmap
target the target splatmap on which you want to scatter the objects
mask factor min the minimum value that the mask should be
mask factor max the maximum value that the mask should be
Objects
block tag layer objects won't be placed on objects with this tag name
invert tag layer when enabled objects will only be placed on objects with this tag name
Slope
slope min minimum slope value
slope max maximum slope value
Height
height min minimum height value
height max maximum height value
Placement
spacing spacing between objects of the first layer
seed the seed used for generating random values
self culling when this property is enabled the objects will cull one another
Scatter stack
cull radius radius where other trees will be removed to counter overlap
detail cull radius radius where detail will be removed to counter overlap
spawn radius distance between spawned objects
child count amount of children that will be spawned by the object
scale multiplier min minimum value of the scale multiplier
scale multiplier max maximum value of the scale multiplier
width scale min minimum value of the width scale
width scale max maximum value of the width scale
height scale min minimum value of the height scale
height scale max maximum value of the height scale
distance scale multiplier scale multiplier based on distance from parent
Detail stack
density detail scattering density
min height minimum height
max height maximum height
min width minimum width
max width maximum width
hole edge padding the distance from a hole where no detail will be added
use instancing enables instancing on the detail objects
render mode allows you to select a render mode for details

Stamp asset properties

general
height heightmap preferably in 32-bit
color color map
mask determines overall opacity of the stamp
splat 1 & splat 2 each splat texture has 4 channels at your disposal
road mask a special mask that is destined for road blending; usually this mask looks the same as the opacity mask but narrower

Tips and tricks