AI Generated surroundings in Climb Portal

The Climb Portal has a neat Mario Kart Rainbow Road feel to it. But wouldn’t it be nice to have the option of riding on something that looks like an actual real world mountain? Having Zwift programmers visualize every single climb would likely take too much time and resources, but why not use generative AI to create the surroundings! Maybe a new version per week for each climb? :wink:

I wonder if it would be possible to use photogrammetry?

See the video from Sydney there - just the poster screen of the video is showing Crown Towers Sydney in Barangaroo. It’s pretty accurate. At 1:04 you can see the Wintergarden (on Bent Street Sydney), Centrepoint Tower (Sydney Tower Eye) as well. Even before that the EY building. Later on you even see Adobe’s office in Sydney. Flip to London though and it’s not nearly as good as the data supplied wasn’t as good.

It would take time and effort but would be worth it because all the portal climbs could potentially be semi-accurate.

Zwift more broadly is a gamified visual experience, and is not intended to look like a life-like replica of the outdoors. Climb Portal more specifically is an evolution that takes the gamified look and feel into a different direction from the rest of Zwift. We don’t have any plans to make it look like a real world ride.

We don’t want Zwift to be like flight simulator. Zwift can run on an aging iPad presently. It’s not about photorealistic graphics.

That said, RGT had magic road scenery, while monotonous, far more compelling than Zwift’s hyper-surreal rainbows. I’ve ridden Old La Honda IRL many times, and riding it as a climb portal didn’t make me feel as if I was on the real thing at all, but more as if I was playing a video game. In contrast, even the crude RGT magic road scenery on the same climb put me into the scene.

Another comparison: Indie Velo just released a new climb where the only scenery is dirty snow. But even that has some semblance of realism. I assume that this is just an initial release and Indie Velo will improve the scenery in the near future.

So what I’d like to see, in the least, is realistic terrain taken from LIDAR map data used to generate the portal roads worlds. Then use land use data to populate it appropriately: trees, grass, rocks, etc. But the surrealistic rainbow, while a fun game environment, is inconsistent with conventional Zwift philosophy.


Yeah, I tested out the new indievelo road and was kind of blown away at how simplistic it was. Hopefully it gets some love

I didn’t say it had to be like that, I was referencing the technology being used for generating the scenery, didn’t realise things had to be explain to nth degree.

Anyhow we have the answer. Portal climbs will remain as they are. :frowning: