Hacker News new | comments | show | ask | jobs | submit login
OpenStreetMap plugin for Unreal Engine 4 (github.com)
362 points by mariuz 347 days ago | hide | past | web | favorite | 61 comments

And thus we get VR games like Slenderman stalking you, on the streets of your home town! Or GTA 6 - Your City. ARK or Day Z, but set in actual Detroit. Oh, what amazing gaming possibilities this unlocks.

And hopefully, self driving cars and quadcopters and other drone robots can use a 3d model of a city, to better navigate the real world. How about teaching a self driving car, with the GTA 6 - Your City game?

GTA is already being used to train self driving cars: http://download.visinf.tu-darmstadt.de/data/from_games/data/...

My self driving car hit every person on the street. Real life GTA!


Upvote guaranteed for unlocking that memory!

"GTA 6 - Your City"


GTA My City would be an awesome game!

There were a handful of driving games set in real cities back when GTA 3 came out, but they died because real cities aren't designed for fun game play. It's interesting for like 5 minutes but then you start looking for something to actually do.

GTA - Stuck In Traffic.

The export function on osm.org is a pretty expensive operation on the live database and not the best way to download OSM XML data for most people. If you're looking for a city-sized extract, https://mapzen.com/data/metro-extracts/ is a good source. They have pre-built ones for commonly requested areas, or you can select your own bounding box.

There's also the continent/country/state level extracts on Geofabrik: http://download.geofabrik.de/

Or you can use osmosis to cut a file down to any arbitrary area: https://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Osmosis

That will be doable soon for Flightgear. It already supports OSGEarth:



Reminds me about this: SuperTuxKart

SuperTuxKart is a free, open-source racing game. This page is about generating 3D levels for the game, using OpenStreetMap data.



Mother of god, I need to be able to race in STK in my area. I could race to a new destination before driving there, to ensure I don't get lost; kinda like that feature in Google Earth.

Before people get all excited: OpenStreetMap barely contains any 3D data. You can get a layout, and guess the height of the houses, if not tagged/stored in OSM, and they usually are not.

So OSM doesn't have much 3D data now but I wonder if maybe that'll change if this sorta thing takes off. If the interface for contributing 3D data (terrain and buildings, say) is well done, and plugins and libraries start to get support then we could see some of the larger cities filling out pretty quickly.

OSM doesn't need terrain data, since it would be very messy to store. And you can just combine OSM data with SRTM/ASTER/etc data if you want "ground heights"

There isn't really support for terrain in OSM. But there probably shouldn't be, there's not really any good way to collect a little bit of elevation data.

For what it's worth, most GPS chips report elevation (however accurate or inaccurate that may be). It could be as "simple" as using the elevation data in the existing traces, assuming they didn't strip that or fail to save it.

Then again, for common elevation data, there are loads of other good sources which can be used in conjunction with OSM, not sure about licensing though.

The problem with elevations from GPS chips are that they are ellipsoidal heights, that is the height from the surface of the ellipsoid used to model the earth. This can be very far from the elevation referred from mean sea level. I think SRTM is still the best way to get elevation data as mentioned by other commenters.

That explains a lot! After looking at some traces I started to suspect the same. I guess I should've RTFM.

Ah my bad, I'm not familiar with the details of OSM. I figured there'd be some vague support for elevation data so that at least you'd have a nice-ish starting point for modelling a city. Thanks for the clarification though

One approach people have used is to import something derived from SRTM into their rendering system and use that along with OSM data.




also imagine when self-driving car companies start contributing their camera data. you could have pretty good coverage of textures and other things.

Why would they contribute?

same reason why they do opensource.

granted, this is probably more on the "intellectual property" and "secret sauce" side of things.

Plugin like this for DroneDeploy would allow you to map your own neighborhood

> Keep in mind that many locations may have limited information about building geometry. In particular, the heights of buildings may be missing or incorrect in many cities.

How do they figure out the building heights at all then?

High-resolution LiDAR and IFSAR. You can download some US elevation data for free from the USGS[1], other countries may have similar datasets available.

[1]: https://viewer.nationalmap.gov/basic/?basemap=b1&category=ne...

Australia has a high res lidar available for free, about 300gb, I've been wanting to import it into blender but need a new hdd/more space to do it.

I think the data was found here http://www.ga.gov.au/scientific-topics/national-location-inf...

http://elevation.fsdf.org.au/ is starting to get data from LIDAR on a more local level, NSW/Sydney has some point cloud data up (presumably not just elevation but buildings/man made structures?) with more coming online every month until July 2018

Sorry was about 300gb for nsw, not sure of other states/territories

and probably photogrammetry from the arial photos.

Which is what Google and Apple do. Pretty good, but it doesn't work well with trees

> How do they figure out the building heights at all then?

I don't know how this software does it, but people are tagging "number of floors" for buildings, and you can get a decent estimate of building heights from that (by presume X metres per floor). When standing on the street, you can easily figure out the number of floors.

Time of day and shadows? Just a guess.

It'd probably be easier to use aerial imagery

It's only a short step to pulling that information from Google Earth, which already has it for many cities.

Looks cool to me. A Quake/Unreal-like 3D-game, with realworld maps, could be cool :)

Would assets built upon the exported XML be considered an "adapted database" in the license terms?

The decision for the OSM license switch was a questionable one. If you're in the US, the (federal) copyright statutes contain no sui generis provisions for databases. I.e., there is effectively on copyright protection for the kinds of things you'll be pulling from OSM, so long as you can guarantee that the data you're pulling is limited to the attributes that wouldn't meet the threshold for creativity. This includes all the boring but most useful stuff: coordinates, dimensions, building height, street layout.

This is not legal advice.

The Open Database Licence (as used by OSM) is expressly a contract as well as a copyright and database rights licence, so it applies in the US even when copyright doesn't. (I'm choosing not to pronounce here on whether applying copyleft/share-alike to geodata is a good idea...)

IANAL, but seems doubtful that they can enforce that contract; some servers (that the OSM project links to) don't even mention it when you download the files, let alone require an explicit mark of your agreement.

Copyright is different, in the sense that in the absence of a license, the default terms in the law actually prohibit one from copying stuff, hence one can't claim ignorance.

Enforceability of clickwrap is a long-disputed topic. But I think it's fair to say that anyone who intentionally disrespects the wishes of the volunteers who are providing them with the best source of free geodata in the world is a first-rate idiot.

That is useful in the US, but in Europe boring but useful databases are still covered by copyright.

I presume you mean "Derived Database", which has a share alike (and attribution) requirement in the OSM licence. The other possibility is a "Produced Work" which only has an attribution requirement. Notably a map image generated from OSM data is widely held to be a "produced work". If the result of this is "database-y" then it's probably a "derived database". If it's "image-y", it could be a produced work.

ODC uses adapted to describe derivatives in their "human-readable summary".


What form of definition of "database" are used, ie how do we differential between an "adaptation" and an "adapted database".

For example, would a texture used in a game that has a environment grid generated from the osm database be considered an adaptation of the osm database? I personally don't think so, on the concept that the concept of databases has conceptual borders which generally don't include textures.

Does UE4 support paging landscape?

Yes, a UE4 world can be divided into a grid and the engine will manage loading/unloading areas as necessary. There's a caveat with this however, as each segment is effectively a separate level so you have basically no choice but to import your terrain as a chunked hieghtmap instead of using the terrain tool as meshes can't span multiple levels.

We are doing something like this for hackerexperience.com :) hope to see more games with real world interaction!

I would love to try this on for size just as a desktop application for practical puposes. Would be nicer under a freely licensed engine though.

The next installment of XCOM is going to be sweet!

Any similar thing for Valve Counter Strike engine (whatever it is)?

That's the Source engine. As far as I know it's not open source. It's a very heavily modified quake 3 engine if I remember correctly, so you could get the open source ioquake3 (or with media, since ioquake3 is just the source code without any game sprites/sounds/etc.: Open Arena) and work in there.

Start the countdown to moral panic about the opensource first-person shooter that is set in Washington DC, NYC, or Chicago, and which is contributing to gun violence.

Unreal Engine 4, not Unread.

I was really excited, sounded so promising :)

Have any example renders?

Here's a brief flyover and zoom out of Brooklyn:


Open the link. The readme has a few.

Guidelines | FAQ | Support | API | Security | Lists | Bookmarklet | DMCA | Apply to YC | Contact