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Possible Editor features?

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Just wanted to post about a couple possible/potential editor features that y'all might find interesting to implement, or at least look into.


First, regarding bodies of water. I was working with the Leadwerks editor a bit, and having enabled the water plane, got to thinking in terms of "what if I wanted to add other water pools and such at different elevations? How would I handle that?"


To my knowledge, LW doesn't have anything to support additional, specifically placed water bodies. I'm not sure if there's plans for that, but there's a couple systems I've seen that each seem to work really well.


One approach is like they do it with the Neverwinter Nights 2 editor. You create a water body, set its height, and basically "paint" the water in.

Here's a video showing it:


Another approach is like they've handled it in the Unreal Engine (and maybe still do, I haven't messed with it much since 3). Basically, you create a water volume, which is a CSG-type object that you scale and place where you want the water to be. Anything inside this will be "underwater". Then you place a plane (flat, or animated) with the desired water shader/material directly above the volume. It creates a convincing enough effect.



Another feature I've seen in other editors (and in Blender's sculpt tool, for that matter) is for terrain editing. It's a "pull" or "grab" function. Basically, you place the brush where you want it, left click and move the mouse, and it pulls just the area inside the brush up and down, effected as normal by your brush settings. This has proven very handy to have when tweaking small areas, especially if you can get down to the single vertex level.



Other than that, I'd like to make a suggestion for something I'd like *not* to see - that is, a compulsory node-based material system. Mind you, I'm not totally against node-based material systems, I just don't like when that's the *only* way to create one. My ideal setup would be to have something like you have now - select the diffuse, the normal and other maps, and voila, you have a working material. But, then there's, perhaps, a "use nodes" button that can be pressed on a per-material basis, so you can then go in and do more complex material/shader editing if you wish. Or, if you change your mind, you just cancel the editing, and it returns to the basic material. I like the idea of node editors, I just hate having to first how to create a material if all I want to do is jump in and start editing something. Just thought I'd add that in tongue.png

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