Grand designer allows you to create an infinity of planets, nebulae, asteroids thanks to the power of procedural noises. Using the power of your DX11 GPU, every parameter changes can be seen in realtime. You can then export the planet geometry, its textures, snapshots and simple animations.
All Reviews:
Positive (47) - 97% of the 47 user reviews for this software are positive.
Release Date:
Apr 13, 2016

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Recent updates View all (11)

October 24, 2018

Features pack DLC is available

Hi everyone,

This DLC adds 40+ features resources to build planets. Those features are either structures, cities, buildings, hell holes, lava pits, rock formations that you can spawn on the surface of the planets to enrich them.

You will have also access to the substance designer files used to create a large part of these features, except the ones that were made from 3D models. This will allow you to modify and/or create you own quite easily.

The package contains 40+ models (height, color, emissive and alpha) at a resolution of 2K x 2K.

You have access to 3 models on the 40 with the basic Grand Designer software!

8 comments Read more

October 23, 2018

V 1.2.0 Major Update

The release of this update took a lot longer than expected, but finally ... it's here ... and it's free for all previous users

This major update fixes the following bugs:
  • Interface - Fixes incorrect tooltips
  • Interface - In the minimap, the baked in height water level is fixed.
  • Interface - Dropdowns are improved.
  • Interface - Navigation was sometimes broken when in no UI mode (Tab) : fixed.
  • Interface - Reset values not always consistent : fixed.
  • Generator - Input map strange behavior when the map was not in the media directory fixed.

And adds the following features :
  • Interface - The water level is visible in the minimap now.
  • Interface - Noise models/presets are directly available now using the Models button directly on the Noise title section. This allows quick tests. You cannot add new presets yourself.
  • Interface - New open and save dialogs, using the latest windows forms.
  • Interface - Hot : Sliders are much more accurate. If you press Shift while dragging, 10x more accurate, Ctrl, 100x more accurate, Ctrl+Shift, 1000x more accurate. The cursor automatically wrap around the screen.
  • Interface - Hot : You can enter out of range values in the text box next to the sliders. Use at your own risk as out of range values can generate unexpected behaviors.
  • Interface - The planet is hidden while computing the HD version, reducing rendering time.
  • Interface - Hot : some tabs can be displayed in Solo mode, allowing precise tuning by removing the influence of the other layers (use the Solo toggle button on the right of the tabs).
  • Interface - You can now display Directional AO and Cities maps in the debug mode bar (left of the viewport)
  • Interface - Super Hot : Color ramps are now editable, using as many colors are you want, adding more flexibility to the coloring process. All previous ramps will be automatically converted to the new system, so you can improve them afterward.
  • Interface - Some color ramps uses new the alpha channel, like the clouds, the rings, ice, details … etc.
  • Interface - New progressive rendering, like the previous one, change this setting in Options/Miscellaneous.
  • Interface - Enforce viewport size before doing snapshots or large snapshots (Viewport menu).
    Noise is now split in 2 sliders: noise layers combination type and noise type.
    Some noise layers combination are available only for a selection of noise types,
    the unavailable types are greyed out.
  • Generator - New noise layers combination modes has been added.
  • Generator - New noise type (Flat Voronoi) has been added.
  • Generator - Intermediate buffers use a more accurate format (16 bits between 0.0 and 1.0) instead of a half precision (16 bits too but for a much larger range)
  • Generator - New blending modes for details and details 2, it’s quite similar to add+cut range, just simpler to use :
    ▪ Fill valleys : Using the Level slider, you can add relief only under a given
    ▪ Fill peaks : Using the Level slider, you can add relief only above a given
  • Generator - Directional AO generation and rendering. This allows much better contact shadows on the planet. The generation parameters are in the ‘Other’ tab, the rendering parameters are in the lighting section of the Shader tab (Local shadows).
  • Generator - Vegetation can be controlled by heat.
  • Generator - Roughness by slope added in relief tab.
  • Generator - Improved noise distortion using an intensity slider and a roughness (scale) slider.
  • Generator - Hot : Features tab has been added.
    ▪ Enable spawning heightmap brushes on the planet to add building, cities, special mountains and so on.
    ▪ Some samples are provided with the basic version of Grand Designer, you can buy an extra DLC for more advanced and complete feature set, including some substance designer files allowing you to easily create new ones.
    ▪ You can create your own features :
    • Red channel = heightmap
    • Green channel = color map
    • Blue channel = self-emissive map
    • Alpha channel = shape cutout
    • Use power of 2 size like 1024x1024, 2048x2048 … etc.
  • Generator - Hot : Square textures can be generated now, reducing by 2 the size of your planet and keeping the same details density by making it mirrored. You can change that by checking the Use square format in options->Output. This is working also for partial planets and backgrounds!
  • Generator - Heightmaps (relief base) and features maps can be either in sRGB or in linear space.
  • Generator - New color ramp influence for relief, details and secondary details, allowing richer colors.
  • Generator - Relief, details and secondary details can be limited to a portion of the planet, based on the distance to the equator. This is also influenced by the tilt axis and equator offset parameters in the weather tab.
  • Rendering - The ring has been split in 2 (front & back) for better blending with planets with atmosphere.
  • Rendering - The atmosphere is now directly affected by the color and intensity of the sun.
  • Rendering - Rings are now perfectly rounds and are not depending on the geometry density, UV are generated analytically.
  • Rendering - Hot : Atmosphere rendering has been dramatically improved :
    ▪ Volumetric shadows are now supported.
    ▪ Clouds can be rendered
    • As before (on the ground)
    • As a plane
    • AS a volume
    ▪ Different levels of quality
  • Rendering - Shadow dithering (you can tune it in Shader->Lighting->Dithering). Cool results when doing large snapshots.
  • Rendering - Textures dithering (in Shader->Texture->Dithering)
  • Rendering - Improved quality for snapshot with alpha (better alpha extraction).
    Directional AO can be exported in an RGBA texture.
  • Export - Geometry export has been fixed and allows now much bigger/denser planets with more than 65k vertices.
  • Export - New simplification/decimation algorithm, better, faster.
  • Export - Hot : Magicavoxel export. This is still experimental, but it’s working fine so far.
    ▪ You have to export a partial planet (coverage percentage <1)
    ▪ You can define the height of the area you are exporting (1=maximum size for a single bloc in magicaVoxel = 126 voxels)
    ▪ The area defines the number of 126x126x126 blocks you want for the surface.
    ▪ You can also export the cloud layer.

There is a new trailer where you can see some of these features in action :

As well as 4 new tutorials to see how to use them :

I hope you'll enjoy all of these new features!
Thanks again for your support! You're the bests!
5 comments Read more

About This Software

The power of procedural creation :

Grand designer allows you to create an infinity of planets, nebulae, asteroids thanks to the power of procedural noises. Using the power of your DX11 GPU, every parameter changes can be seen in realtime.

Controlled chaos :

Create complex ground structures by using one of the thirteen noise generators, like :
  • Perlin
  • Voronoi
  • Multifractals
  • Billow
  • Hyperfractals
  • Exponential
and more ...
Combine the basic noise layer with a secondary and a tertiary noise layer and procedurally generated craters. Those extra details will beef up the complexity and the richness of the ground of your planet.

Natural features :

Boost your productions by adding natural details like :
  • oceans - and tune water height, density, colors ...
  • ice caps - and tune ice expansion, randomness, transitions smoothness, minimal and maximal level ...
  • desert regions - and tune desert spread, randomness, edge sharpness ...
  • clouds - and tune clouds shape, coverage, coloring, coriolis effect, twirls intensity and much more.
Add sediments taking into account the slopes and cavities of the terrain. Color them depending on the moisture level, terrain height and type. Add extra random vegetation to enrich the surface of your planet.

Colorize the world :

Create endless variations of your worlds by using the intuitive color ramps editor. Store presets by categories and recall them whenever you want, it's that easy.
Make multiple color variations easily with the adjustment tab.

Fill the void :

Set a background for your planet by rendering volumetric nebulae in no time, tuning stars color, density and intensity.

Export :

Export the textures in png, tga, dds and tiff with a resolution up to 4k x 2k with up to 4 samples per pixel in the regular version and up to 16k x 8k with 64 samples per pixel in the pro version (see version comparison). Have access to all individual layers like :
  • albedo
  • roughness
  • ambient occlusion
  • normal map
  • sky color and alpha
  • slopes
  • curvature
and much more ...

Export also the terrain geometry and reduce its complexity to make it usable in realtime.
All the assets can be used in your favorite engine or renderer like : Unreal engine 4, Unity 5, Maya, 3DS max, Blender, Marmoset toolbag, Sketchfab and more ...

Render still images and still-image sequences:

You can render very large images thanks to the snapshot system, up to 30k x 20k resolution with the Pro DLC. And also, sequences of images where you're animating the different planet and background parameters.

You should consider buying the pro DLC of grand designer if you plan to use it for advanced usages or if you want to ouput large and high quality textures. See the differences in the following table :

Note that this software requires a directX11 graphic card to run and windows vista or above, in case of doubt, don't hesitate to ask.

Grand designer website
Ignishot forums

System Requirements

    • OS: Windows Vista 32bits
    • Processor: 1.5Ghz
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: DX11 card with 1Gb
    • DirectX: Version 11
    • Sound Card: not used
    • OS: Windows Seven 64bits
    • Processor: 2.0 GHz
    • Memory: 8 GB RAM
    • Graphics: DX11 card with 2Gb or more
    • DirectX: Version 11
    • Sound Card: not used

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