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Procedural Playthings: Dream Houses And Archipelagos

The day I don’t ooh and aah over procedurally-generated prettiness, you will know I’ve been replaced by a Snatcher, and you will know what to do. Today I’m being distracted from work by Oskar Stålberg’s Brick Block [official site], a browser-based procedural building generator.

Plop down blocks and they’ll merge to grow arches, windows, doors, balconies, and terraces decorated with cute details like plants, pots, and beehives. As a fan of dollhouses and miniature things, it is delightful. He’s made procedural archipelago and city generators to play with too.

Creating fantastic apartment blocks and dark arched alleyways is such fun, and the delicate lighting ties it all together so well. I hope you will enjoy playing with it.

His archipelago generator is great too, drawing spires of rock out of the sea with a gentle rumble as fish leap and birds fly by (click and drag to pull rock around). You might find it comforting to listen to this soundscape while poking about.

His city generator is far scrappier, the work of one day. Clicking and dragging lays down roads which populate with trees, buildings, and whatnot. It’s interesting to see the working as you add new bits onto existing streets, watching the algorithm figure out the final form. It’s not as pretty but hey, let’s procedurally generate everything while we’re at it.

Though I can hardly talk about procedural buildings and cities without mentioning Project Sprawl. And who even knows what Strangethink is up to with all those cats? Oh, there are so many more procedural things to coo over at the moment but I mustn’t get carried away or I’ll never finish work.

Anyway, also look at how Oscar turned these stumps and fungus into miniature towns populated by micro-people. They’re nothing to do with this, but are great. That’s all for now, honest.

[Thanks to my chum Pat Ashe for pointing this out.]

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Alice O'Connor

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When not writing news, Alice may be found in the sea.

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