Monday, December 19th, 2022 Posted by Jim Thacker

Planetside Software unveils Terragen Sky

Orignally posted on 4 November 2022. Click here for details of the latest early access release.

Planetside Software has launched Terragen Sky, a new application for creating and rendering skies.

The software, currently available in early access, makes the sky generation capabilities of Terragen, Planetside’s landscape generation app, accessible using a simplified UI and workflow.

A streamlined app for generating photorealistic CG skies for VFX, visualisation and motion graphics
Unlike its parent product, which also generates terrain and instances objects like rocks and vegetation, Terragen Sky is focused purely on creating and rendering CG skies.

According to Planetside, Terragen Sky “comes with a fresh new UI” and provides a simpler way of creating clouds than in Terragen itself, with “all of the node wiring tucked away out of sight”.

The demo video shows an intuitive workflow, with users clicking in the viewport to position the sun, then adusting cloud layers via slider controls for coverage, density and altitude.

Generate 360-degree HDRIs with preset resolutions up to 8K
As well as sky elements for matte paintings or backdrops for VFX and animation, Terragen Sky can generate 360-degree HDRIs that can be used as environment lights in other DCC software and game engines.

A Live Send 360 feature exports the current sky as an EXR preview, generating a live link with software that automatically updates environment images, including Clarisse iFX, OctaneRender, Unreal Engine and V-Ray.

Planetside describes it as a “near-real-time source of HDR lighting”.

Exports to Terragen itself for the final touches, but will become a ‘truly standalone’ app
Skies generated in Terragen Sky can be refined in Terragen itself, either by exporting parameter data or a complete scene file, although Planetside aims to make Terragen Sky a “truly standalone application”.

The firm is working on “UI components to bring many of [Terragen’s] advanced controls into Terragen Sky”.

According to Planetside’s latest email newsletter, it will also be possible to create more stylised skies in Terragen Sky, including “planetary orbital shots” and skies for fantasy and alien worlds.

Pricing, release date and system requirements
Terragen Sky is available in early access for Windows only. The early access build is free to anyone with a current subscription to or maintanance contract for Terragen, and with new perpetual licences of Terragen.

Terragen itself is available for Windows 7+ and Mac OS X 10.8+. You can find current pricing here.

Read more about Terragen Sky on Planetside’s website

Read the online documentation for Terragen Sky