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Creating Terrain Hole Materials

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Creating Terrain Hole Materials


Overview:  This technique allows you to use an opacity mask to create holes in the landscape. The base size of the hole components will be dictated by the size and scale of your landscape components. (denser mesh - Smaller holes)




References courtesy Unreal Engine Documentation







Landscape Hole Materials

Creating holes in your Landscape is something that you can do in Manage Mode but only by deleting entire Landscape components at a time. To get around this, you can use a Landscape Hole Material to mask out the visibility and collision of a certain location on your Landscape. This is great if you want to make something like an entrance to cave in the side of a mountain.

You can use the same Material for your Landscape Material and your Landscape Hole Material, but be aware that Materials that use opacity masks are more expensive, performance-wise, than Materials that do not. That is why you have the option of creating a separate Landscape Hole Material.

How to create a Landscape Hole Material:

  1. First either open up or create a new Material in the Material Editor. Once the Material is open, look in the Details panel and set the Blend Mode to Masked.


  1. Next, search for and add a LandscapeVisibilityMask node to the Material Graph and connect its output to the Opacity Mask input.


  2. Now you can set up the rest of your Landscape Material like you normally would and when completed, you should have something that looks similar to this.


  3. Once the material has been complied, it is now time to assign it to the Landscape so that it can be used. This can be done in theLandscape Hole Material section in the Details panel.


  4. When completed with everything, you should now be able to mask and un-mask the visibility of your terrain like in the following video.

Also see the reference to painting a hole material on the landscape





The Visibility tool enables you to create holes in your Landscape, such as for caves.

  Alternate Controls Operation Shift + Left Mouse Button Removes the visibility mask, making the Landscape components visible again. Using Opacity Masking to Create a Hole

Although you can use the sculpting tools to create vertical holes in your Landscape, you may find that you also want to create horizontal ones, such as for caves. You can do so by using opacity masking to "paint" away the visibility of a section of your Landscape with the Visibility tool.

In order to paint away the visibility of a section of your Landscape, you must set up the Landscape Material correctly. For information about setting up a Landscape Hole Material, see Landscape Hole Materials.

If you use the Visibility tool without having a Landscape Hole Material assigned, the Visibility tool will remove the Material layers applied to the selected sections, but will not create a hole in the Landscape itself.

After you have set up your Landscape Hole Material, you can use the painting tools to create a hole in your Landscape.

To create a Landscape hole:

  1. Make sure you have a Landscape Hole Material assigned to your Landscape.


  2. In the Landscape tool, in Sculpt mode, select the Visibility tool.


  3. Find the location on your Landscape where you want to create a hole.


  4. Adjust the brush size and falloff appropriately.


  5. Press Left Mouse Button to create the hole and Shift + Left Mouse Button to erase a hole that was created.


    You can now fit Static Mesh Actors in the hole in the Landscape to create a cave.


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