Objects Window

Parameters

Objects List

Click an object to select it

Add Object

Click to add another object to the scene 

Delete Object

Click to remove the current object from the scene

Plot on Terrain

Click to mark the individual location of every object on the Terrain Window

Show on DirectX

Click to recalculate all object location and generate the object preview shapes on the DirectX preview

Export Objects

Click to export all object locations to a file allowing other software to utilise Forester's object location algorithms. One such program is Forester2Blend by Guy Van Rentergem which uses the file to locate objects in Blender.

Object Label

Type a short description for this object

On

Click to toggle the current object on and off for inclusion in the scene. Useful when performing test renders to reduce processing/rendering time.

Object Type

Click to select the current object type.

Distribution Shape

When Forester positions objects it starts by generating an initial position defined by the object shape type. It then performs a series of checks to establish whether the position is valid (eg depending on the terrain slope at that point, etc). If it finds that the position is invalid for that object (eg a rock has been placed on the water surface), then it will generate a new location (again based on the shape type). It will perform this up to 100 times for each object (or each 'duplicate' of an object) or until it finds a satisfactory location before moving on to the next object.

Point

A single object is placed at the location defined by Coord#1

Line

Multiple objects are equally spaced along the line from Coord#1 to Coord#2. Object positioning can be randomised by using an X-Y-Z variance.

Ellipse

Objects are distributed uniformly around the circumference of an Ellipse centre Coord#1, size Coord#2. Object positioning can be randomised by using an X-Y-Z variance. If objects are not Locked to Terrain, distribution will be around the circumference of an elliptical cylinder

Ellipsoid

Objects are randomly positioned within the Ellipsoid centre Coord#1, size Coord#2. If objects are not Locked to Terrain, object distribution will form an Ellipsoidal 'cloud' in space.

Box 1

Objects are uniformly spaced within the box with opposite corners at Coord#1 and Coord#2. Object positioning can be randomised by using an X-Y-Z variance.

Box 2

Objects are randomly spaced within the box with opposite corners at Coord#1 and Coord#2.

Image Map

See later for details of the Image Map distribution type

Flight Path

The object will move along the specified flightpath

 

Number of Copies

Defines the number of duplicate of this object. Note: Point distribution shape objects are fixed at 1 copy. See later for details of how this value controls the Image Map distribution type.

Marker colour

Defines the colour on the Image Map that relates to this objects, and also sets the colour that this object will be displayed as on the DirectX preview and Terrain Window.

Coord#1/#2

These values depend on the distribution shape. (See above)

Lock Shape(s) to Terrain

If ticked then each objects Z-location will be locked to the terrain height at that point. Note: for some distribution types, eg Ellipsoid, turning this off causes the objects to hang in mid air.

Offset

Adds an offset Z-value to the object height (only relevant if Lock Shape(s) to Terrain is ticked)

Rotation X,Y,Z,Fix

Sets the rotation of each object dupe. Tick the 'Fix' boxes to set all dupes to exactly the same rotation. If a rotation axis has an unticked 'Fix' box, then the rotation will be varied randomly with an 'amplitude' equal to the rotation value (unless this is set to zero, in which case this rotation will be 100% random)

eg. If a rotation axis is set to 10 and Fix is unticked, then each dupe will have a random rotation between -10 and +10 degrees about that axis. If the rotation is set to 0 (zero) and is un-Fixed, then each dupe will have a random rotation between -180 and +180 degrees. If rotation is set to 10 and Fix is ticked then every dupe will have an exact rotation of 10 degrees.

Scale X,Y,Z,Fix

Sets the scale of each object dupe. Tick the 'Fix' boxes to set all dupes to exactly the same scale. If a scale axis has an unticked 'Fix' box then it will be scaled to within +sc% and -sc% of the scale value, where sc is the Scale Variance value.

Variances

Uniform

Currently unused.

Random - Seed

This sets the random number generator seed value for this object. Each seed value generates a different string of random numbers, but the same seed will generate the same numbers over and over again. Use this value to try a different set of random object locations if, for example, the original seed produced a tree that grew just in front of the camera, etc.

X-Y-Z Variance

This sets the maximum distance that an object can be moved from its original location. This is particularly used with Image Maps to create a random offset to each object.

Scale Variance (%)

This controls the maximum scale variance when scaling each object dupe (See above - Scale X,Y,Z,Fix)

Water

These options set how the objects interact with the water plane. Note that most of these options can also be set using the Altitude Distribution functions (see below)

Ignore

The water plane is ignored in any object positioning calculation.

Avoid Water

Any objects over water will be rejected from the scene

Avoid Land

Any objects over land will be rejected from the scene

Float

Objects Z-height will be set relative to the water surface

Sink

Objects Z-height will be set relative to the terrain under the water

Altitude Distribution - H-a, H-b, H-c, H-d

The probabilities are linearly interpolated between H-a and H-d. Therefore the probability of an object occurring at an altitude exactly halfway between H-a and H-b is 0.5, and the probability of an object occurring at an altitude exactly halfway between H-b and H-c is 1.

H-a is the absolute minimum altitude that an object will occur at. ie: the probability of an object occuring at or below H-a is zero - P(Object @ H-a) = 0

H-b is the minimum altitude that an object has a 100% chance of occurring at. P(Object @ H-b) = 1

H-c is the maximum altitude that an object has a 100% chance of occurring at. P(Object @ H-c) = 1

H-d is the absolute maximum altitude that an object will occur at. ie: the probability of an object occuring at or above H-d is zero - P(Object @ H-d) = 0

Slope Distribution - S-a, S-b, S-c, S-d

The slope distribution uses the same principle as the altitude distribution (see above)

Separation Distance

Minimum

Sets the minimum separation distance between object duplicates. Use with caution as this parameter can drastically increase the calculation times. Use SMALL minimum separations.

Maximum

Sets the maximum separation distance between object duplicates. Use with caution as this parameter can drastically increase the calculation times. Use LARGE maximum separations.

More About Image Maps

The Image Map distribution type allows a large number of objects to be quickly 'painted' onto the landscape using the basic built-in image editor, or by importing a bitmap file from a graphics package. The precise colour of each pixel defines which object will be placed at that location on the main terrain. The pixel colour corresponds to the 'Marker Colour' of the individual objects. NOTE: Grey pixels (where Red Component = Green Component = Blue Component) are ignored and should not be used as a Marker Colour. Use the X-Y-Z Variance control to randomize the location of each object so that they do not appear too regimented (unless this is a required effect - have a look at the graveyard crosses in my gallery for an example).

The default Image Map size match the size of the current terrain. However, by editing the Image Map in an external graphics program (eg: Paint Shop Pro or PhotoShop) the Image Map can be enlarged to provide a higher resolution. When imported back into Forester, the map will be scaled to fit the current terrain size.