Ocean

One of the master pieces of Paradise Sandbox is its high-quality and fully customizable ocean system. Also, it features a multi-threaded architecture so you will be able to achieve very high quality results even in real-time.

As well as the sky, the ocean is a component which can be added/removed to/from the scene. Some presets come with the ocean already configured.

If you want to manually add or remove the ocean system in your scene, you can simply use the Plugins menu:

One time you have the ocean component in your scene, select it by using the Project Explorer and change its properties by using the Property Editor:

As you possibly have already noticed, there are quite parameters for customizing the ocean look, so we will study them group by group:

Basic parameters

  • Color: Color of the water
  • Full refl. distance: Distance from the camera to the water surface needed to render only reflection (no refraction)
  • Reflection transparency: Transparency of the reflected component
  • Normal distortion: Level of the distortion applied to reflected and refracted components (the distortion is applied according to the normal vector of the water surface):

  • Position: Position of the ocean surface. Only the Y component (height/altitude) is taken account since this is an infinite ocean.
  • Planes error: Bias applied to reflection and refraction components. It must be set to the smaller value that gives a good result in your scene.

Components

There are 5 different components in the ocean system: sun, foam, depth, smooth shore transitions and caustics.

Each component can be enabled or disabled independently:

Sun

  • Color: Color of the Sun reflections on the water
  • Position: Position of the Sun, automatically linked to the MainLight direction
  • Power: Power multiplier
  • Area: Shininess applied to sun reflections
  • SSS Strength: Level of sub-surface-scattering (SSS) applied to the water. Only visible if the Depth component is enabled:

Foam

  • Scale: Scale of the foam
  • Start: Height where the foam starts to be visible
  • Opacity: Opacity of the foam. 0 means fully transparent foam (no foam).
  • Shore effect: Extra foam near surfaces which are at water frontier:

  • Wind velocity: Velocity of the wind, affects how fast the foam moves along the water
  • Wind direction: Direction of the wind
Depth

The depth components specifies if the light scattering along the water is taken account or not. Usually you will want to enable this component or otherwise you'll not have depth-based effects:

  • Limit: Distance from the ocean surface to the underwater surface from where it starts to be completely hidden
Smooth shore transitions

Specifies if the transition between the part on an object which is partially over-water and under-water should be smooth.

  • Smooth power: The level of smoothness. Note: works better with big objects (like big ships or big structures)
Caustics

  • Scale: Scale of caustics
  • End depth: Distance from the ocean surface to the under-water geometry where the cuastics effect is not visible
  • Caustics power: Color/power multiplier

Geometry options

The ocean geometry parameters controls how the geometry is created in order to render the ocean.

  • Complexity: Resolution of the grid used to render the water. The bigger complexity, the better it will look; but the render time will be slightly bigger:

  • Amplitude: Amplitude of waves
  • Choppy waves: Enables or disables choppy displacement
  • Choppy strength: If choppy waves are enabled, the level of choppy displacement applied
  • Attenuation distance: Distance at which waves amplitude is none. Useful if you're experimenting aliasing problems at the horizont.

Noise options

Controls the ocean pattern and motion.

  • Scale: Scale of the ocean pattern
  • Resolution: Size of the simulation field
  • Physical size: Real size of one simulation field. Play with this value.
  • Waves direction: Direction of the waves
  • Wind velocity: Velocity of the wind. Use values bigger than 20.
  • Wind direction: Direction of the wind (different from direction of waves)
  • Animation speed: Speed of the ocean motion