CityEngine Polygon Modeling Tool enhancement idea

02-07-2021 10:07 AM
Status: Open
by Anonymous User
Not applicable

One more idea today.   I'm starting to wrap my head around the increasingly useful polygonal modeling tools and how to use them efficiently to write new CGA code.  I think there is something really special about being able to quickly model a shape I can't easily manually code,  and then use it my CGA.  

However, I think there are two key features missing to making this a homerun!

1. During polygonal shape modeling the new shape tool attributes is useful, but it would be nicer if I didn't have to lock it each time I want to set a number.  In Sketchup you just type a number after you extrude and it auto-locks to that for one assignment.  You can also retroactively assign height.  That is much faster when doing a lot of modeling.

2.  The streets have a graph tool "convert to statics shapes" but do not seem to have one for polygonal shape modeling.  This would be tremendously useful.  It would also be nice if we could define the starting scope by initial point and edge, to simplify the usage in CGA afterwards.    I know I could export the selection as an fbx and then use that, but it would be nice if that was automated as a static shape with a definable scope.  I don't know, maybe an fbx export is best?  Maybe there could be a "quick FBX export button" that exported straight to a predefined asset folder?  It's worth thinking about how to make this workflow the absolute best. 

Thanks CE Team for this amazing program and hard work to make it the best!

by Anonymous User

I should say, that after posting this I did export an fbx and looked into the presets more.   You can set up a simple fbx export (no terrain, no textures (our your preference here), faces separate for editing, etc.), assign it a "default export state", which can be targeted to a specific folder.   And setting up the scope is done mostly by setting the first edge.  So number 2 is just nearly there.  For some people, it might just be learning about setting up some predefined default option as I had.   


Hi Brian,

Thanks for your feedback and nice that you like CE 🙂

Regarding your suggestions:

1) This is currently not possible; however you can achieve something similar when you use TAB (before or while your drawing action) then enter a value and hit ENTER to lock it in.

2) I'm not sure if I fully understand what you want to achieve here (if not let me know), but you can select CGA generated models from graphs and then apply "Shapes -> Convert Models to Shapes" onto your selection.

I hope this helps!



by Anonymous User


Thanks again for the response!    

To answer your follow-up question:  I was not looking to generate a model from graph but from the polygonal modeling tools.  In my follow-up comment above I remarked that I did discover a workflow that works smoother that I had originally known.   I figured out that I should be setting up a model export preset, which is directed towards a preset folder location with predefined settings for my purpose.  It becomes a very fast exercise to export simple volumes once I did that.  After getting used to this workflow, I think its fine.   



@Anonymous User 

Ah I think I understand you now.  There is Tutorial 14c available showing a workflow in a similar direction. But its a valid point you’re bringing up here, maybe we can improve/simplify this workflow in the future, so thanks again for your feedback!