I am creating a dystopian city and I would like to create a series of irregularly shaped buildings from a displacement map of a wall I have downloaded. I have turned the displacement map into a series of individual cubes that I would then like to be able to arrange together to form a building. Here is an example of it in use as a flat surface (I have manually indented and extruded certain cubes to give the wall some dimension): flat building

However, I would now like to create a large landscape of irregular buildings using these building blocks from above, creating a series of buildings such as the ones in this image: example

I originally tried using the geometry node and arranged the cubes around a shape that I modelled to replicate the building however I couldn't get it to work as all the faces intersected with each other, I couldn't get the faces to point the right way and I also couldn't get them to follow the shape of the building to look realistic. Screenshot

I don't think the geometry node is what I need to get the building to work but I'm at a loss of how else to go about this other than manually arranging every cube individually. If anyone could give me some guidance that would be greatly appreciated :) If I have left any information out please let me know and I will add it

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    $\begingroup$ I am not sure if this is the best possible approach for such task... Personally I would try to place random cubes with particle system with Z always facing up but with possible Z rotation and then I would select all boxes -> Separate by loose parts and tweaked some of those boxes to make taller, bigger or different shapes of buildings... $\endgroup$
    – MikoCG
    Aug 30 '21 at 11:37
  • $\begingroup$ @MikoCG how would you make the cubes always facing up? -- the reference image looks a bit like the voxel remesher with "block" mode. $\endgroup$
    – Blunder
    Aug 30 '21 at 15:23
  • $\begingroup$ Nevermind, It's hair. You can comb it. $\endgroup$
    – Blunder
    Aug 30 '21 at 15:34
  • $\begingroup$ Yes you need to go to hair, use advanced option, go to rotation and choose Orientation Axis. This way all objects will face one single way $\endgroup$
    – MikoCG
    Aug 31 '21 at 6:22

Here's a try with a remeshed sculpt, done by the Remesh modifier, method set to Blocks:

blocky base sculpt

Then you can add a Hair Particle System, render the hair as a collection of blocks, and emit them from faces (Emission > Source > Emit From: Faces). Set Emission > Source > Particles/Face to 1.

Set Render > Render As to Collection, Render > Scale Ranomness to 0.500, and *Render > Collection > Instance Collection` to the collection of your cubes.

To smooth the blocky base use Shaded Smooth. If you like add a Displace and a Subdivision Surface modifier. The ParticleSettings modifier must stay on top of the modifier stack so the particles use the blocky mesh:


Here is a quick render test:

render test

With a few modeled larger buildings, trees particles, better textures, some fog, and HDRI lighting you should be able to get an image close to the reference.

Geometry Nodes might work with the blocky base mesh, too.


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