Menu

LEX File Exchange
EA Support Files
SC4 Wikipedia
Network Addon Mod
Dependencies
Chat

Author Topic: Marsh's Swamp (Random things I am working on.)  (Read 37850 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline marsh

Marsh's Swamp (Random things I am working on.)
« on: December 31, 2010, 03:52:08 AM »
I'm just asking for some help here.

I tried making my own water mod as well as rock mod. But each time it doesn't work. (CTD) I used an existing water mod and imported new textures. I kept all the group and instance values exactly the same as the original ones, but still doesn't work.
I didn't find any tutorials about them. So I mostly based it on trial and error, and just random guessing.  &mmm

,marsh
« Last Edit: February 27, 2011, 06:17:40 PM by marsh »

Offline Lowkee33

Re: Water/Rock mods
« Reply #1 on: December 31, 2010, 10:28:46 AM »
I would guess that your textures are not binary squares. 128x128,256x256,512x512,1024x1024.

Since you are overriding the Maxis Textures you have some freedom.  The fact that your game crashes means that the TGI is correct, and the problem is in your textures somewhere (otherwise, the Maxis water/rock/beach would show).  For the time being, you can also delete any exemplar you may have made for the textures because that ID is in Maxis too. 

Last night I worked on the Terrain Tutorials, but there has to be a place for making new textures as well.

Offline marsh

Re: Water/Rock mods
« Reply #2 on: January 01, 2011, 04:55:40 AM »
Thanks that helped. (I knew it would be a completely stupid reason.  %wrd ) The textures Got screwed up when I was editing them...

thanks
,marsh

Offline marsh

Re: Water/Rock mods
« Reply #3 on: January 16, 2011, 10:13:45 PM »
More help please?

I'm having a problem with the blending of terrain textures.

After the 3rd zoom, everything looks great.

However, the 4th zoom and past there is very little blending in the textures, and the transition is very sudden and apparent. (And ugly.)

Here is what I'm referring to.

Zoom-3


and the same area at zoom 4


Any way to make this stop?

,marsh

Offline turtle

Re: Terrain Blending
« Reply #4 on: January 17, 2011, 08:43:02 AM »
Hey Marsh,
I can't really help you personally, but I think maybe what Ennedi posted in Orange_o_'s lex candidacy thread could help you. Something about spread curves... see this post: http://sc4devotion.com/forums/index.php?topic=6746.msg295830#msg295830

I wish you good luck with your project  ;)
turtle
My name is Thomas...

Offline Lowkee33

Re: Terrain Blending
« Reply #5 on: January 17, 2011, 09:43:48 AM »
Indeed, this is done in the texture's exemplar (which are all in No_4).

In the texture exemplar you will find "spread curves" for all of the zooms.  I don't know the exact nature of the properties, but the numbers there probably refer to meters.

Here is the textures as they are in No_4

Full Size

For this, I have just copy/pasted the zoom 2 (Z2) curve into the 3 and 4 properties for the "ed" texture.


Full Size

I have scaled these images, and the jpeg conversion doesn't help either.  The problem is fixable, mostly because these textures do match each other.  You are basically making a choice between blending and definition.   

Offline marsh

Re: Terrain Blending
« Reply #6 on: January 17, 2011, 04:31:03 PM »
Thanks a lot for the help lowkee!  ;D You too turtle. That could help other with things a bit.  ;)

________________________________________________________________________________

Anyways, since this IS a project board and not a help thread, I'll show what I have been doing.

First off rock mods.

Nothing special, since these are NOT MY TEXTURES. Their from Orange's terrain mod and I was just screwing around. Pretty much only for personal use.  ;)

I was trying for some icy rock textures at higher altitudes. I may try to make my own textures, since these are a bit repetitive and bland. (For cliff textures anyway)



This one looks like a very, eroded and smoothish rock.

Again, not my textures, but I was just trying this out to get some ideas.



Now onto my terrain mod.

I am currently editing my Socorro Terrain mod which I realesed on the STEX before Christmas. ->me<-

It was originally for my wild west region. (Which I am trying to Taylor it customly for)

The textures at lower altitudes are fine. Right now I am trying to get some nice High-Alpine looks.

I got a nice effect in this picture, but I was hoping to get it a bit brighter.

However this still needs a lot more work.

As you can see, Theres a large mess of textures at the higher altitudes.




See?... Really horrid. It looks like I was drunk when making made my terrain mod.

Ennedi made some nice high-altitude terrain in this post, as well as this post which I am trying to mimic a bit using some of Orange's textures.

I know I need to make some textures myself when doing this. But I'll do that when I have time.  ;)

My terrain mod WAS nice.. but at the moment I completely messed it up trying to get it how I want. :D

Also, any help is greatly appreciated.  :P

,marsh


Offline Lowkee33

Re: Terrain modding and other stuff.
« Reply #7 on: January 17, 2011, 05:09:03 PM »
Ennedi's contributions to the terrain modding are many and valuable.

Check this out Texture Maker

I have made a few textures with it.  Grass is harder, and an image editing program certainly helps.

Just make sure you make the 1024x1024 and change your Terrain Texture Tileing Factor to .1 in the terrain exemplar.

Offline Lowkee33

Re: Terrain modding and other stuff.
« Reply #8 on: February 25, 2011, 03:55:29 PM »
Quote
Just make sure you make the 1024x1024

ehh, you may know I have had a change of heart with this one.  Basically, it comes down to file size.  We have necessary textures: water, cliff, beach, lower beach, deep sea, and the two on the edge of a map.  That leaves us with 249 textures we can make without interfering too much with Maxis.  1024x1024 are going to be about 2.5mb each, so that is a near 625mb mod.  512x512 would be 150mb, which, to me, is still too much.  You got to figure, NAM and a variety of add-ons is about 100mb, so a terrain mod that size would have to be nearly as essential (could it ever be?).  I am going for about 60mb, but part of that is dependent upon if I end up using a dynamic moisture simulation.

btw, do you want the INI I made using Cycledog's textures?  Haven't got much feedback.  You would need the Weather Tuning Exemplar too, but I could point you to that if you are interested.

:) The Reason I am Posting:  Finally dug my head into the terrain texture exemplars:

Texture blend strength:  This is the strength of a texture as it blends with other textures.  We may have been able to fix the problem you had before by increasing this value for the brighter green/stone texture.

The two unknowns appear to have no effect whatsoever.  I removed them and changed value significantly with no effects.

The SpreadCurves all work the same way.  They are ordered pairs.  The first of the pair is the distance from the center of the texture, which I don't think is meters.  The second of the pair is the strength of the texture.  It is hard to tell this by Maxis Terrain Textures, but check out the Beach Exemplar (0x39) it has 12? Reps.  The 6 Reps are something like this: 0,1,16,1,32,0.  This says "0 from the center the texture is at %100, 16 from the center the texture is also %100, and 32 from the center the texture is at %0".  Not a very good curve.  A much better curve would have more reps (which is possible) and slow down the rate of going from %100 to %0: 0,1,8,.8,16,.6,24,.4,32,.2,40,0.  In general, the distances can be smaller for closer zooms, and depending on how well the textures match each other.  (This is why copy/pasting the zoom 2 into the 3&4 worked to fix your issue.  We increased the distance the textures spread out.  During my tests I noticed off and on performance issues while changing zooms, so I am slightly weary of making these properties have too many Reps.

Offline marsh

Re: Terrain modding and other stuff.
« Reply #9 on: February 25, 2011, 11:33:27 PM »
Thanks for that info. I like to take any that comes my way. :)

I've been playing around with my terrains (not as much as before.) For some reason the texture maker does not work for me. Just get an error message saying it has stopped working.  &mmm

,marsh

*edit - I would love that ini.  ;D

Offline marsh

Re: Terrain modding and other stuff.
« Reply #10 on: February 27, 2011, 06:17:08 PM »
Well.... working on some tree controllers for fun.   $%Grinno$%

They're from C.P.'s tree pack. This is a spring version.



Although those missing areas in the valleys are a ain for me ATM.  ()what()

As you can see from the very professional looking image below, I want that peach circle like the red circle. Any help there? At the moment no trees get planted there what-so-ever.



As well as the spring, there is a fall one. I think it needs a larger variety of color. However that would conflict with the trees of the other seasons that are located in the same places... (This is why seasonal trees would be awesome:P)



These are NOT seasonal. They are just simple controllers I have made, mainly for my own personal use. Lowkee is working on seasonal versions of C.P.'s trees. Which you probably can't tell, but I am very anxious for them.  ::)

And finally, just some playing around.




,marsh  :)


*edit - Here is another pic by joshriddle577. I gave to him in chat to test (because I was unsure about the dependency) It came out very nice... Spread out and neatly placed :)
(I think that is my terrain mod as well.  :D)

« Last Edit: February 27, 2011, 06:48:03 PM by marsh »

Offline Lowkee33

Re: Marsh's Swamp (Random things I am working on.)
« Reply #11 on: February 27, 2011, 07:48:13 PM »
I'll have that INI for you soon, today was busy with props.

Looks good.  I helped JackFrost with some flora-ing and that thread would help you.  (Link).  From your pictures it looks like you are missing a moisture value somewhere in FloraPreferences.

Flora can be changed like terrain textures.  If you plant trees, save, quit, and then change the RKT of the tree you planted, then the next time you open the game the new model will appear there.  So, you could make 4 identical tree controllers where each on references different seasons.

The best way to have a tree controller is have one cluster for each florapreferences Rep.  You would start with a few models being repeated in many flora exemplars, but as new trees are made you could simply switch out RKT, and no one would have to replant.

Offline marsh

Re: Marsh's Swamp (Random things I am working on.)
« Reply #12 on: April 01, 2011, 04:16:21 PM »
Lowkee: Thank you. That REALLY helped.  ;D I did not know that before... :P

Well I have a new mod on the STEX.


The HD Sandy Beach Mod.

I have used Orange_o_'s textures for it (He gave me permission to release it ;) and I have to say they are really beautiful.







3rd closest zoom of the beach.




Offline kodlovag

Re: Marsh's Swamp (Random things I am working on.)
« Reply #13 on: April 08, 2011, 05:20:20 AM »
Nice mod, marsh.

I now decided to play with tree controllers. I was bored to planting trees at mayor mode, I want to do it with the god mode brush. It's so much faster.
I saw your pics in your MD so many times, and if I'm correct, you plant them with a controller. I found the attached tree controller in one of your older post. I was more or less successful with recreating your newest controller with girafe's maples, Heblem's tropical trees and gdv's coconut palms. Not very easy to fine tune the flora radius and cluster radius parameters to look good. I can't even decide the exact number of maple models used. Maybe other models are there too.

My final goal would be making a full tropical tree controller, similar to cp's controllers. Can you share your controllers already made to help me? Or cooperate in a project? Or if you already started it, I would be happy if I could join. I think it's time to make new controllers, as there are many new tree models are out since cp's pack.


Other
Do you have any more information about the FloraParameters property? I think I already read everything available on the SC4D.
 1. State change interval [day/2]
 6. Cycle length for state change [day]
 8. Max allowed slope
11. Radius of exclusivity. Flora only placed, if no other flora exists within this radius
13. Radius occupied. Flora only placed if not intersects with other occupant sizes.
Visit my MD, welcome to Archipelago

Offline noahclem

  • Administrator
  • Forums Legend
  • *
  • Posts: 5871
  • Total likes: 712
  • Reputation: 16
  • CL:
    Resident Reindeer
Re: Marsh's Swamp (Random things I am working on.)
« Reply #14 on: April 08, 2011, 11:13:52 AM »
Beautiful stuff Marsh! Hopefully you're interested in kodlovag's proposal too--tree controllers for those new HD trees would be great!

Offline marsh

Re: Marsh's Swamp (Random things I am working on.)
« Reply #15 on: April 08, 2011, 09:36:57 PM »
kodlovag -

I know how to make tree controllers, however the thing I am struggling with at the moment is the property that tell where each tree is supposed to go. I don't often use tree controllers. I'd rather "tell" my trees where to go themselves. The tree controllers I made was because I wanted the region view to look nicer. Just as a temporary placement of sorts. 1 tree controller I did attempt though... I simply started replacing properties in one of C.P.'s controllers. It made a beautiful "Prairie". Similar to the open areas in my Wild West region I made.

A tropical tree controller would be nice, and I would be interested in working with you. (As soon as I completely understand the flora preferences, along with many other ones.  &Thk/( )

I made this in about 3 minuets. Just a simple one using Girafe's maples and some bamboo.



My current forests, for my tropical region, I use Girafe's maples, moonlight's bamboo, goldiva's palms, and heblem's trees here and there. Moonlight made some bamboo on his site (HD) and it blends in amazingly with girafe's maple trees. >>Linkie<< Scroll down the page and you will find them.

The flora parameters, if I am not mistaken  &Thk/(, decides where the trees are placed at different elevations. Again, I have not played with it yet so I'm still figuring that out.


Offline Lowkee33

Re: Marsh's Swamp (Random things I am working on.)
« Reply #16 on: April 09, 2011, 12:35:00 PM »
The flora parameters, if I am not mistaken  &Thk/(, decides where the trees are placed at different elevations. Again, I have not played with it yet so I'm still figuring that out.

This is FloraPreferences, the one with 256 reps.  Very similar to the Texture Table in the INI.  It can be imagined as a 16x16 table, but in this case, the top row is the lowest elevation, the columns still go from dry to wet.  The bottom row (the last 16 digits) also behaves like the top row in the INI, but in this case the setting for the "end" of the flora elevations is in the FloraTuningParameters.  Unless you have snow covered trees (which thanks to Girafe, we do), I wouldn't recommend trees having any value other than 0 in the last 16 reps.

Also to consider is the Water Flora property.  If this is set to true, then the flora only uses the first 16 reps of the preferences, and ignores any altitude limitations.  It doesn't work the way the description says it does.  I don't think it ever could either, the main problem being that underwater is guaranteed to be only the wettest moisture level.  (although maybe a rep in the parameters changes the non-workingness of the altitudes).

Values in preferences can be anywhere between, and including, 0-1.  The main function of values other than 0 or 1 is to be like a strength modifier, but there is another which I will explain further down. 

I would be happy if I could join. I think it's time to make new controllers, as there are many new tree models are out since cp's pack.

Agreed.  I will be working on a Girafe only controller, but we haven't seen the last of plants from him (unless the birches broke his spirit  :'( ). 


Quote
Do you have any more information about the FloraParameters property? I think I already read everything available on the SC4D.
 1. State change interval [day/2]
 6. Cycle length for state change [day]
 8. Max allowed slope
11. Radius of exclusivity. Flora only placed, if no other flora exists within this radius
13. Radius occupied. Flora only placed if not intersects with other occupant sizes.


I have been meaning to post this in a tutorial section, but here you go. 

CycleDogg did some valuable research into this, and filled in a bunch of gaps.

11- This is the amount of space a flora takes up after it is plopped, however see rep 14 
14- If the height difference between flora is greater than this, then flora will override the 11th rep

At least, 4, 5, 9, and 10 have something to do with RandomSeedingCellsPerMonth property in the Flora Tuning Parameters.

By default, this property is set to "0".  By changing it to something other than 0 you will see trees being planted automatically every 24 months pre-mayor mode.  The 18 months change be changed to 1 (which is how it is in my seasonal flora patch), at which point you will see however many trees to have set to plant per month appear.

Rep:

9- if this value is less than or equal to the values in the flora preferences, then a tree will be placed.  Otherwise, the tree is removed.

10- not too sure.  Perhaps speed of seeding, perhaps slope possible.  Values between 0-1 seem to make a difference, although Maxis has them at 30

4 and 5- relate to the "spreading" of the flora.  There is a point where rather than be placed randomly (also depending upon preferences) flora "spreads", like if you were to pour liquid on a floor.

Without 4 and 5 being high, this random seeding is slow and tedious.  It may be some kind of radius.  My testing with increasing rep 9 makes large gaps of flora.  Changing 4 or 5 effects the gaps, but it also seems to make clustering not work as well.

So that leaves 2, 3, and 12 as being mysterious.  All of the god-mode trees have these set the same, so finding differences in behavior is tough.

I have attached a file that will plant Maxis trees at a somewhat manageable rate.  The 9th rep is also set to .9 so that in some places, the types of trees can "battle".  Within 2 years of running this you can have a fully covered large tile.

The main downfall of this is that it stops working after you enter mayor mode.  There is also a moisture simulation that would make trees much more diverse, but this only starts after entering mayor mode.  Even if it could, the moisture simulation only seems to be able to last one year (no matter the change in the property that basically says "length of moisture simulation').  If disasters didn't pause the game as well, I could see really neat things happening.   

Offline marsh

Re: Marsh's Swamp (Random things I am working on.)
« Reply #17 on: April 10, 2011, 04:02:15 AM »
Wow Lowkee. That helps a lot.  :) I'll play around with tree controllers more sometime in the near future. I think I'm starting to understand now.  ::)

Although today.... I've been playing with terrain mods more. Trying to get a good one for a future desert region of mine. The sand looks great further away. Like dunes. I need to modify the texture so that when you change zoom they stay more or less the same size. For some reason though Girafe's trees fit in surprisingly well...



As well as a rock mod for it.





Finally... how is this for Simmars terrain? :P





Today I've just been having fun. Although I hope to actually go further on that Desert terrain mod.

Offline kodlovag

Re: Marsh's Swamp (Random things I am working on.)
« Reply #18 on: April 10, 2011, 06:10:56 PM »
Nice terrain textures, I like your mod. If you need, I have 7 sand and rocky sand textures, packed and ready to use. However I've never tested how they look in the game. Just PM me, if you want them.

This is what could I achieve by now with tree controllers. Will try to add the bamboo too. Looks better in game, jpeg conversion shifts the colors.



Visit my MD, welcome to Archipelago

Offline kodlovag

Re: Marsh's Swamp (Random things I am working on.)
« Reply #19 on: April 10, 2011, 06:29:34 PM »
11- This is the amount of space a flora takes up after it is plopped, however see rep 14 
14- If the height difference between flora is greater than this, then flora will override the 11th rep   

After playing hours during the weekend with a test flora I found the same rules.
Thanks for the info on the flora spreading and auto planting. I've never run long enough the game in god mode to see this feature exists.

Do you plan to make a seasonal tree controller?
Visit my MD, welcome to Archipelago