Mercator is primarily aimed at terrain for multiplayer online games and forms
one of the WorldForge core libraries. It is intended to be used as a terrain
library on the client, while a subset of features are useful on the server.
Mercator is designed in such a way that individual tiles can be generated
on-the-fly from a very small source data set. Each tile uses a fast
deterministic random number generation to ensure that identical results are
produced "anytime, anywhere". This enables transmission of terrain across low
bandwidth links as part of the standard data stream, or server side collision
detection with the same terrain that the player sees.
The use of tiles means that there is inherently a large degree of gross control
of the shape of the terrain. Finer control is implemented by allowing geometric
modifications - for example, a polygonal area might be flattened, or a crater
could be applied.