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How can I set a camera projection matrix? I want to render a perspective like the old SimCity 1989:

image description

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Great! Thanks very much! Please tell me how yu find the angles (curious how find them). –  Châu Feb 8 at 8:02
    
For my answer below I just eyeballed it based on the image you linked to. –  gandalf3 Feb 8 at 8:08
    
OK, thanks for your help! –  Châu Feb 9 at 8:54
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For orthographic rendering Blender can't take a custom projection matrix, however you can shear an orthographic projection to get the desired results.

  • Use an orthographic camera, with the camera set at an angle (45 degrees on the X and Z axis).
  • In the render settings, set the Aspect X to sqrt(2)
    This will give something almost exactly what you're looking for, except that its rotated 45 degrees.
  • To correct the rotation, use the compositors Distort -> Transform node.

enter image description here

Notes:

  • rotating the image will loose some accuracy, so you'll want to render larger, then scale down.
  • in the compositor you can scale down by 1/sqrt(2) to avoid loosing the corners.
  • Depth/Mist won't work as you might want, however its probably possible to use a gradient and offset the depth in the compositor.
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Excellent work! Use rotation –45° for SimCity direction. –  Châu Apr 11 at 10:07
    
Careful, x and y direction ok; but z direction is not correct for mist or depth effects. –  Châu May 6 at 10:06
    
@Châu good point, noted in answer. –  ideasman42 May 6 at 18:52
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