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Generating consistent buildings: A semantic approach for integrating procedural techniques

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Author: Tutenel, T. · Smelik, R.M. · Lopes, R. · Kraker, K.J. de · Bidarra, R.
Source:IEEE Transactions on Computational Intelligence and AI in Games, 3, 3, 274-288
Identifier: 436006
doi: doi:10.1109/TCIAIG.2011.2162842
Keywords: Façade shape grammars · floor plan generation techniques · procedural modeling of buildings · semantic modeling · Organisation · MSG - Modelling Simulation & Gaming · BSS - Behavioural and Societal Sciences


Computer games often take place in extensive virtual worlds, attractive for roaming and exploring. Unfortunately, current virtual cities can strongly hinder this kind of gameplay, since the buildings they feature typically have replicated interiors, or no interiors at all. Procedural content generation is becoming more established, with many techniques for automatically creating specific building elements. However, the integration of these techniques to form complete buildings is still largely unexplored, limiting their application to open game worlds. We propose a novel approach that integrates existing procedural techniques to generate such buildings. With minimal extensions, individual techniques can be coordinated to create buildings with consistently interrelated exteriors and interiors, as in the real world. Our solution offers a framework where various procedural techniques communicate with a moderator, which is responsible for negotiating the placement of building elements, making use of a library of semantic classes and constraints. We demonstrate the applicability of our approach by presenting several examples featuring the integration of a façade shape grammar, two different floor plan layout generation techniques, and furniture placement techniques. We conclude that this approach allows one to preserve the individual qualities of existing procedural techniques, while assisting the consistency maintenance of the generated buildings. © 2011 IEEE.