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Fix Landscape Texture Tiling with This UE4 Macro Variation Technique

Category: UE4
January 30, 2020

"I have obvious texture tiling on my landscapes. It looks good up-close, near the player but then it tiles very noticeably far away..."

Before/After of a single grass texture using Macro Texture Variation Technique

I solved my first major landscape obstacle by learning how to hand-sculpt UE4 landscapes entirely in UE4 using the 5-step method I posted here.

But then I encountered another problem I had to solve. How to create landscape materials that look good.

The biggest issues most everyone has with landscapes is obvious TEXTURE TILING. Landscape textures often look good up-close near the player but at further distances the tiling becomes very noticeable.

Just look at this example, textures look pretty good near the player:

Tiling looks good up close near the player

But then you look up and see the ugly noticeable texture tiling:

Horrible texture tiling further away

Anytime you create landscape materials you WILL have to deal with this consistent landscape texture tiling issue.

There are a couple of techniques you will need to implement to reduce this tiling. One of these technique you are about to learn is called "Macro Texture Variation Technique".

How It Works

The way this technique works is you use a tileable texture with some light to dark variations. You use this texture 3 times with different tiling for each. All textures are then blended together with your landscape texture.

Before - here is a landscape texture by itself:

Single grass texture without any Macro Variation

After - here is the landscape texture after Macro Texture Variation applied:

Single grass texture after Macro Variation

You see it makes a big difference. It introduced some color variety and it looks more natural.

I love using this technique.

Video Tutorial: Macro Texture Variation Technique

Watch the video below to see how this is done and use it for your own landscapes.

Complete Macro Texture Variation Setup

See the complete Material Editor setup below:

Click on the image to see larger size (opens in a new tab)

Combining with Distance Tiling

Macro Texture Variation Technique is great and could be used by itself. But it is probably best when used alongside with another technique called Distance Tiling.

Distance Tiling Technique is the ability to set up one texture to tile at different sizes based on player's distance. So you can have one tiling scale near the player and it will automatically switch to larger tiling at further distances away from the player. This will almost completely eliminate any noticeable texture tiling on your landscape.

I explain how to setup and use Distance Tiling Technique in the "UE4 Fundamentals Vol.2: Landscape Essentials" tutorial course.

I hope you liked this technique and begin using it.

PS.

Learn how to create landscape materials and how to do landscape distance tiling technique in the second module of "UE4 Fundamentals Vol.2: Landscape Essentials".

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My name is Alex Galuzin. I am self-taught level designer, game environment artist and the creator of World of Level Design.com. I've learned everything I know from personal experimentation and decades of being around various online communities of fellow environment artist and level designers. On World of Level Design you will find tutorials to make you become the best level designer and game environment artist.

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