Outerra is an in-development ‘world rendering engine’ which is literally capable of rendering a geographically detailed world on a 1:1 scale. The developers have shared with us a video showing initial Oculus Rift Outerra support and are expected to soon release support to the public.
Here’s how the developers describe Outerra:
Outerra is a unique 3D rendering engine, a world rendering engine capable to seamlessly render whole planets from space down to the surface. It can use arbitrary/varying resolution of elevation data that it further dynamically refines using fractal algorithms. The fractals try to mimic natural processes, generating fine, believable terrain with high resolution. The world is also being dynamically textured and populated with vegetation using predefined land type material sets and the computed terrain attributes.
This video gives a good idea of the beauty and scale that Outerra is capable of:
Outerra Oculus Rift Support Coming Soon
Back in March I wrote about the possibilities of Outerra and the Oculus Rift. At the time, there were a few hints that the developers were considering support.
I’m happy to report today that the developers have since received their dev kits and are already well on their way to making the game compatible with virtual reality. Here’s the first look at Outerra Oculus Rift support:
“One thing that’s really nice with Oculus is the sense of scale. I haven’t shown it in the video, but for example the truck looks appropriately large, when you approach the large tires…” Outerra developer Brano Kemen told me.
Kemen says that while initial support is already implemented, there is still some tweaking to be done before a public release:
There are still some basic issues with the stereoscopic rendering that I need to fix before releasing a build with it (sky and sun are wrong, antialiasing).
…some artifacts there are more visible with Oculus than on a monitor display, particularly there are some light leaking pixel gaps in the rocky parts, missing terrain self-shadowing, and morphing between terrain LOD levels. Experiencing it with Oculus actually gives us extra motivation to fix these issues, to make the experience better. But overall, this thing has a great potential.
Kemen expects to first release Outerra Oculus Rift support to supporters who have purchased the alpha version of a game based on Outerra called Anteworld which you can buy for $15. Further down the road support may come to the free Outerra tech demo.