Take a look at this picture: enter image description here

This is a picture of me diving down from a high height. As you can see, the world is a simple world with grass, snow, trees, etc.

The problem here is the 3D foliage. If is obviously just "jumping" into the scene. It also changes the scene dramatically - Instead of simply adding detail to the "current" scene, it's effectively overwriting the terrain underneath it and setting it's own colours/details.

Let's take a look at a popular game, such as war thunder: enter image description here

Yes, you can see the 3D foliage appearing as the player gets closer to it. However, it is very hard to actually focus on how or where it is appearing. Also, the grass adds detail to the terrain, rather than completely overwriting it and providing a completely different picture.

The TL;DR on this is - My game has grass that "pops" into existence and creates an obvious change in the terrain, whereas professional games have unobtrusive hard-to-notice geometry gradually fading into view.

How do other games do this, and how can I implement it?

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    \$\begingroup\$ It looks like the foliage in your second example matches the colour of the terrain underneath. So they may be selecting/tinting the foliage to spawn based on the terrain colour, or conversely they may have painted a terrain colour map based on the foliage that has been designated to spawn there. \$\endgroup\$ – DMGregory Jan 17 '16 at 19:46
  • \$\begingroup\$ @DMGregory Are you suggesting that I get the terrain colour underneath, and set the grass colour to be that colour (or a variant of it)? \$\endgroup\$ – joehot200 Jan 17 '16 at 21:31
  • \$\begingroup\$ That's one approach. The Witcher 3 uses a variation on this idea (using the terrain colour at the base and fading vertically) \$\endgroup\$ – DMGregory Jan 17 '16 at 21:34

You seem to just show the foliage at pre-determined distance.

Why don't you lerp foliage opacity between transparent and opaque across some distance range? Could be the simplest most noticeable improvement.

| improve this answer | |
  • \$\begingroup\$ The "Make it fully transparent and fade into opacity" is a great solution (thank you for that, by the way), but is there anything that is somewhat more elegant, or makes the transition a bit smoother than just making things un-transparent? As in, are there any other techniques that I can/should use for this? \$\endgroup\$ – joehot200 Jan 17 '16 at 21:29
  • \$\begingroup\$ Transparency combined with non-repetitive folliage looks great. Add more visual diversity in foliage. Also note than on 2nd video, foliage color is very similar to its background. \$\endgroup\$ – Kromster Jan 18 '16 at 4:53
  • \$\begingroup\$ Alright - Trying out your suggestions. I'll accept the answer when I manage to get it to work. Thanks for the assistance, I appreciate it. \$\endgroup\$ – joehot200 Jan 18 '16 at 11:44

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