Unity Gaia: Is it worth the price

Unity has lot of powerful tools to in build within but terrains are not yet perfect in unity. When it comes to terrain unity assets store offers a wide range of terrain tools to select. In unity, Gaia is the most popular and most user friendly terrain generator available. You can have beautiful looking terrain in minutes.

Unity Gaia features

  • Stamping- You can stamp landscapes like hills,valley, rivers with this.
  • Spawning- you can add vegetation, houses and other object in scene with this.
  • Built In, LW, SRP- This gives good performance and easy loading in mobile devices.
  • Third Party Extensions- Unlimited scaling for features
  • Multi Tile Support- Improves performance but having multiple titles
  • Preset biomes for immediate results

If you want realistic terrains it’s by far the easiest way to get there. Gaia automates quite a few processes (like setting up the correct lighting on your camera/project and adding post effects, an upcoming update is also going to add a replacement for unity’s standard water) but at heart it’s really only designed for shaping your terrain.

It has procedural spawners for painting your terrain textures and adding trees and grass, as well as other details like rocks or even Points of interest (farms, villages, etc.) But this is pretty broad stroke stuff. If you want more control over the placement of things then that’s where Gena comes in. It’s a great tool but I’m not sure I’d place it at the top of my list, unless you have a big budget. GameObject placement is something you can do by hand given enough time.

Instead, what I would totally spend my money on is VegetationStudio. You can’t really do performant terrains on Unity without it. Buy it, you can thank me later.

You’ll also probably want to budget for a terrain shader. Unity’s basic terrain texture rendering is a bit flat. CTS is the obvious choice with Gaia, but MicroSplat is a valid alternative that provides a free entry point (you pay for additional add-one like Tessalaton and Anti-Tiling). If you dont want to spend more then you can go for Gaia pro.

GAIA PRO vs GAIA 2

If you use Gaia then you can freely upgrade to Gaia 2. But Gaia pro will require you to pay $45 to upgrade.

Features only in Gaia Pro

  • Advanced Masking & Filtering
  • HQ Forest Biome
  • HQ Water System
  • Profile Driven Lighting
  • Profile Driven Water

Assets included with Gaia pro

  • HD Temperate Forest Biome by Procedural Worlds
  • Ambient Skies, Sounds, Post FX & Water from Procedural Worlds
  • 3D Low Poly Adventure from  Synty Studios
  • 3D Village Exteriors Kit from 3DForge
  • Grasses from Turboscalpeur
  • Real Rocks from MotuProprio
  • Textures from GameTextures.com
  • Textures from NatureManufacture
  • Trees from SpeedTree
  • Screenshotting system
  • Lighting system

Gaia pro is really worth the price and is a one stop solution for all your terrain requirements.

Get Gaia Pro

Gaia has a vibrant discord server, ask questions there if you’re still unsure about anything related to environment design: https://discord.gg/rtKn8rw

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