Monday, February 5th, 2024 Posted by Jim Thacker

JangaFX releases GeoGen 0.2

Originally posted on 18 October. Scroll down for details of GeoGen 0.2.

JangaFX has released GeoGen, its intriguing real-time terrain generation tool, in public alpha.

The lightweight node-based application makes it possible to generate both terrain and entire 3D planets for use in real-time applications and exports a range of game-ready data types.

The software was released in closed alpha in October 2023, but the latest build, GeoGen 0.2, is available for anyone to test, via a 14-day trial version.

The Substance 3D Designer of real-time terrain generation?
Developed as a “cooldown project” between bursts of work on real-time simulation tools EmberGen and LiquiGen, and originally known as SceneryGen, GeoGen is a real-time tool for generating heightmaps and 3D terrain.

JangaFX describes it as a successor to Grand Designer, the ‘procedural universe generator’ developed by Gil Damoiseaux, now working as a R&D engineer at the company.

JangaFX originally pitched it as being “built like Substance [3D] Designer, but for terrain and planets”, although the website now puts it less directly, noting that “if you are familiar with a certain industry-standard ‘procedural material editor’, you will feel right at home when using [it]”.

Generate terrain and planets using a non-destructive procedural workflow
GeoGen lets users create terrain using a non-destructive node-based procedural workflow.

It features a “wide array of sourcing nodes, modifiers [and] filters”, and “all of the parameters you need to finely tune anything from noise to erosion”.

The placement of terrain features can be controlled with masks, with support for “familiar blend operations”.

Although there are a number of rival terrain-generation applications, a distinctive feature of GeoGen is its ability to generate entire planets.

Planets can be generated at “arbitrary scale with full atmosphere support”.

A range of rendering and export options
GeoGen includes a “robust look dev renderer”, with options for raymarched, lightmapped and path traced rendering making it possible to choose how to trade speed against visual quality.

It exports “game-ready data types”, with terrains exportable as 3D meshes, or as heightmaps, color maps and texture masks, at up to 8,192 x 8,192px resolution.

Planets can be exported as 3D meshes, or as octahedral or equirectangular maps.

JangaFX hasn’t posted the online documentation for GeoGen yet, so at the foot of this story, you can find a longer feature summary, taken from the firm’s latest email newsletter.

EmberGen 0.2’s rewritten Crumble node. According to this tweet from developer Gil Damoiseaux, it can simulate “hundreds of thousands” of pebbles falling in real time.

Updated 5 February 2024: JangaFX has released GeoGen 0.2.

The update improves export from GeoGen, making it possible to export image sequences from all export nodes, to export multiple nodes at once, and to export the viewport state.

Other changes include the option to animate waves using the wave phase parameter, and to re-route nodes in the node graph.

The release is compatibility-breaking, since it reworks the Crumble node to generate deterministic results, and also updates the Fluvial filter and mask.

Pricing, system requirements and release date
GeoGen 0.2 is compatible with Windows 10+ and Linux. A macOS version is coming “soon”. It is currently available commercially in alpha. JangaFX hasn’t announced a final release date yet.

A node-locked perpetual licence of GeoGen costs $299.99; the rent-to-own plan requires 18 consecutive payments of $19.99 /month. A 14-day trial is available.

Read more about GeoGen on JangaFX’s website

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Read the full GeoGen feature summary from JangaFX’s newsletter

  • Fully featured node-graph based procedural generation
  • Powerful mask based system for absolute control
    • Masks based on Height, Curvature, Occlusion, Slope, Shadow, etc.
    • Familiar blend operations to leverage the strength of masks
    • Easy chaining of mask nodes
  • Broad range of Heightmap operators such as Terrace, Faulting, Craters, Crystallizer, Ridge & Bulge, etc.
  • Advanced erosion filters
    • Grid based and particle based
    • Work in multiple resolutions at once for finer control
    • Includes mask extraction
  • Water, snow, and sediment simulations with advanced level of detail control
  • Terrain and Planet generation
    • Terrain up to 8km by 8km, with a texture resolution of up to 8192×8192
    • Planets of arbitrary scale with full atmosphere support
    • Intuitive curve and color gradient controls
  • Mesh, Heightmap, and Texture Import and Export
  • Raymarched, Lightmapped, and Path Traced rendering for both speed and quality
  • Robust look-dev renderer
    • Fully simulated atmosphere with parametric controls
      Clouds, Water, Depth Of Field, Lighting, Atmosphere, and Texture Details