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Author Topic: Evergem, The Netherlands  (Read 40668 times)

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Offline capo

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Evergem, The Netherlands
« on: October 13, 2007, 11:46:47 AM »
Welcome to my Mayor Diary!

Intro:

A few days ago Ennedi asked me in his wonderful MD (<--linkie) to show him how I created my rugged shorelines from the picture contest. After a few days of struggling with new files and dependencies, finally everything is working as it should again and I can fulfill his request. Iím someone who terraforms and builds as he goes, so please donít expect big region or city views yet. In general a city zone takes me 2 weeks to create if I have plenty of spare time, so please be patient. I will post a list of vital mods/bats with every update so if you see something you like, itís going to be quite easy for you to recreate it.  The purpose of this MD is not only to showcase work, in future updates I would also like to teach you readers a bit about my home country: The Netherlands.

The Netherlands is like SimCity in real life. Almost every tree you see here is put there for a reason, we have very little original nature, the green parts of The Netherlands are mostly man-made. Reason for this is that a big part of the Netherlands (the northern part where I live) used to be sea. This new developed land is very flat and doesnít have much variety, we actually have zero mountains in the Netherlands..we do have some hills though, way in the southern tip. This may look very dull (in RL or SC), but this is the view I look at each day, so please do not expect great mountain work or crazy hills..for me that just wouldnít be realistic.Ö This is my first MD so any advice, feedback or criticism is welcome!

I donít want to overkill the first time so in this first post I would just like to include this small Ďtutorialí about my shorelines as requested by Ennedi, in future updates you will learn the history of the city, region and country, itís landmarks, itís scenic views, you name it, everything.

Part 1: creating lake shorelines for the city of Evergem.
Important mods / props for terraforming:
* Watermod: PEG's Brigantine
* CP's Terrainmod: Meadowshire
* CP's ploppable rocks Brown ; Grey ; White
* JRJ's Slope and Tunnel Mod
* JRJ's Tree proppacks : number 2 ; number 3 ; number 4


Allright here we go!

Step1:
I always create a border when terraforming. Usually I drag a road or railway so I know when to stop when creating my lake. This may seem silly for some of you, but it's actually quite usefull especially when you are in God-mode. After I'm done terraforming, I usually raze this road or railline.


Step 2:
Simple, use the valley creating tool in mayor god mode to create a basic lake of your likings.


Step 3:
Until now it has been easy, this is where you will really start working. Use the create hill tool (in the NORMAL mayor menu, not the God-mode one) to raise the terrain before the shorelines. Not on the shorelines but a few tiles away from it IN the water. Just experiment with it, remember this is not what it will look like in the end so not everything has to be picture perfect. Also use the hill-tool to create random depths of your lake. A realistic shoreline usually doesn't plummet 30 meters down once you have taken 2 steps into the water, it's better to gradually let it slide...


Step 4:
Now using the create valley tool (again the normal menu, not the god-mode) and lower your shores until you see very little green on the edges. I usually start quite a few tiles away from the lake, moving the mouse at a reasonable pace towards the lake. The closer you get to the lake, the slower you move your mouse. This will create some more realistic slopes towards the lake.


Step 5:
Now it's time to use CP's grey rocks on the shores, don't place too many..but just enough for some nice realistic details. I always keep in mind how the water flows (or has flown), these rocks didnt fall out of the sky but were washed ashore. I start with the smallest ones, placing them on any place that seems right around your lake shore..try to place these grey rocks in the water or just on the shoreline (I try to avoid the green spots) so it will look like they washed onto shore a long time ago (last Ice Age?). When I concentrate more small rocks at one spot, I usually throw in a big one or 2 as well. This looks very realistic in my humble opinion. It will now look something like this:


Step 6:
Now let's start working on some small details. Did you ever see a forest where every tree was completely alive and green? No, there are sick trees, dead trees, fallen down trees, yellow-ish trees..you name it. Let's start with the dead ones first: for this I use JRJ seasonal trees: winter and CP's logs. It's also a nice effect to place some logs on the shores for some nice washed on wood. I've also placed a few different colour rocks around the shores, like the white ones you see here. One rule I keep in mind to keep it realistic: on the grey/purple-ish parts of the shoreline you will see almost no trees, except for a few dead ones. The most important rule of all is: less is more! That's right, having 3 well placed rocks in one area will always look better then massive amounts of randomly plopped rocks.



Step 7:
Time to place the trees! Everybody has their own favourite set of trees. In this city I use JRJ's Aescul trees as my basic trees, while I use the seasonal summer trees and wildbushes for the shadow-sides and the Ulmus ones for the lighter parts. Here's the lake with the basic trees placed (Aescul)

Doesn't look that great eh? Well every forest has it's darker and it's lighter parts, so let's add some variation with the seasonal summer trees and Ulmus.

That sure looks a bit better but we are not there yet.

Step 8:
And the final step. Use the Winter wildbushes from JRJ on the shores, fill your forest with all colours of rock (again not too much) and wildbushes, create small open spaces and please don't forget to place an occasional JRJ autumn seasonal tree every now and then. Click a few times to get a yellow/orange one, you know the drill :) The only limitation is your imagination..




I hope this will be usefull for some people, if not..I had a fun time creating this small 'tutorial'. Thanks to Ennedi for the inspiration!

Until the next update,

take care :)

The complete history of Evergem ->My Mayor Diary <-
Come and visit Paroch Plein!

Offline sebes

Re: Evergem, The Netherlands
« Reply #1 on: October 13, 2007, 11:54:24 AM »
Thanks for showing us this Capo! I will sure try to do this myself as well now that I learned the tricks here  :thumbsup:
Check my MD:               
Rhenen,NN

Offline Serkanner

Re: Evergem, The Netherlands
« Reply #2 on: October 13, 2007, 12:55:51 PM »
Very good explanation how to make these very nice shorelines. I usually make the 30 meter plummets  :D  but will try to make something more like this next time.

Of course I am extra interested to see how this MD will develope because I am also a flat builder and also Dutch.

Offline Ennedi

Re: Evergem, The Netherlands
« Reply #3 on: October 13, 2007, 01:44:14 PM »
I think it will be a very interesting MD!

You made a great characteristic of the Netherlands landscape in very simple words. And your tutorial is really excellent done! It is also very simple and clear, so everybody can easy repeat your steps and look at results :thumbsup:

Everything you do is well thought  and well-grounded, I am sure you make a lot of experiments to come to the point in wchich you are now. ;)

And here is my short analysis (I added some my ideas in a few points, I hope you have nothing against it  :))

1. Making orientation points and lines is a very good practice. In addition, you can raise the road (using a Ground Lifter from the Hole Digging Lots set) and you will see it in SC4 Terraformer if you use it.

2. Your explanation how to terraform a shoreline is really great. Dear Readers, please note the method of starting a few tiles away from the place you want to terraform - it is very important (in mountains even more ;D) I didn't see a better explanation of such theme.

3.
Quote
I usually start quite a few tiles away from the lake, moving the mouse at a reasonable pace towards the lake. The closer you get to the lake, the slower you move your mouse. This will create some more realistic slopes towards the lake.

These mouse movements are not mechanical at all! It is rather like painting by brush. You must practice some time to accustom your hand to these movements;)

4.
Quote
Now it's time to use CP's grey rocks on the shores, don't place too many..but just enough for some nice realistic details. I always keep in mind how the water flows (or has flown), these rocks didnt fall out of the sky but were washed ashore. I start with the smallest ones, placing them on any place that seems right around your lake shore..try to place these grey rocks in the water or just on the shoreline (I try to avoid the green spots) so it will look like they washed onto shore a long time ago (last Ice Age?). When I concentrate more small rocks at one spot, I usually throw in a big one or 2 as well. This looks very realistic in my humble opinion. It will now look something like this:

I always try to make the same  :thumbsup:

5.
Quote
Now let's start working on some small details. Did you ever see a forest where every tree was completely alive and green? No, there are sick trees, dead trees, fallen down trees, yellow-ish trees..you name it.

I agree, this is the best method of making a forest also in my opinion. If you want to have some dead/seasonal trees, rocks, or for example small areas covered by trees different from your main kind of forest, do it first. Then you can fill the rest of the space by your main kind of flora you use (of course it is good to leave some free space to do what capo explained in steps 7 and 8 (about seasonal trees - capo put it at the end, I do it sometimes at the beginning, you can choose the method :), the amount of seasoneal trees will be an important factor)

6.
Quote
The most important rule of all is: less is more!

Yes!!!

Quote
The only limitation is your imagination..

...And your MD is an excellent example of it! :thumbsup:
« Last Edit: October 13, 2007, 01:46:24 PM by Ennedi »
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Offline Yoman

Re: Evergem, The Netherlands
« Reply #4 on: October 13, 2007, 02:06:02 PM »
I fell in love with that picture in the Sc4D picture competition. So its just natural that I would love this MD :)

I do however have one suggestion that someone might have mentioned before. (two acctually)

1. Minimize the tool bars by hitting numlock and press Crtl-Shift-S to take a picture.

2. Either unpause the game or install Mijg-Dudy's no yellow bar mod from ST to get rid of the ulgy yellow pause bar.

Otherwise I really can't wait for your next update. You've constructed one of the best shorelines Ive ever seen.

Offline bat

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Re: Evergem, The Netherlands
« Reply #5 on: October 14, 2007, 05:11:32 AM »
A wonderful start there! Looking forward to more...

Offline tooheys

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Re: Evergem, The Netherlands
« Reply #6 on: October 14, 2007, 05:37:18 AM »
Capo, your terraforming is up there with the best of them.  &apls

Great work, have you had a look a Jeronij's ploppable water yet, would be interested to see what you can do with that.

Will certainly be watching this.

Cheers

Dave

Offline Schulmanator

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Re: Evergem, The Netherlands
« Reply #7 on: October 14, 2007, 01:41:59 PM »
Nicely done! Thanks for the step-by-step!  :thumbsup:
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Offline Pat

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Re: Evergem, The Netherlands
« Reply #8 on: October 16, 2007, 01:34:25 PM »

Capo bravo!!!  &apls &apls what a great start to your MD and i cant wait for more of it - pat

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Offline capo

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Re: Evergem, The Netherlands
« Reply #9 on: October 16, 2007, 02:01:44 PM »
Replies:

sebes: Thanks for dropping by! (Bedankt voor het langskomen) I'd be curious to see the results when you are done.

Serkanner: Aaah the blessings of being Dutch. No problems with slope-unfriendly buildings or whatever, we can just keep our land fairly flat and still consider it to be realistic. Thanks for visiting my MD!

Ennedi: Thanks for your analysis and your kind words friend, everything you wrote down I completely agree with. You are right about all the experiments, there are many old cities in the dustbin. You know what they say: practice makes perfect! (oh oh, that's the school teacher talking inside of me :D )

Yoman: Don't worry, all of the pics will be without frames from now on. I only kept them here in this case because this was a tutorial. I didn't know about that num-lock option though, that will save me quite some time since I always prefer a big view when zoning/building. Thanks for the compliment about my shorelines, you make me shy ;)

bat: Thanks for your vist, I hope my next update (within a few days) will also be of your likings.

tooheys: I've downloaded the latest transparent water and I must say it looks great. There will be a small surprise coming with this latest masterpiece of jeronij, propably in an update or two. I won't give away the secret but all I can say it will be something I doubt you've seen before, but it will take you back to the first SimCity ever created... Now how's that for a teaser? :D

Schulmanator: Thanks for your visit! You're welcome about the step-by-step, with all this fine content and tutorials out here it's the least I could do

patfirefightr: Thanks my friend, prepare yourself for an update soon. I've been experimenting with creating my own lots lately, unfortunately it takes a lot more time then I'd thought. Next to that I promised Barby to sort out a new mega-cleanitol file, so please be patient for more. I promise an update of this MD this week though!
« Last Edit: October 16, 2007, 02:05:40 PM by capo »

The complete history of Evergem ->My Mayor Diary <-
Come and visit Paroch Plein!

Offline M4346

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Re: Evergem, The Netherlands
« Reply #10 on: October 16, 2007, 02:12:07 PM »
I also wondered how you achieved that amazing result in the photo submitted to the picture competition and showcased elsewhere, and now I know and can see the work in progress!  ;D As others have stated, the result is incredibly realistic and aesthetically pleasing (I almost said atheistically pleasing :D) and I have to whole-heartedly agree with them.  :thumbsup:


Serkanner: Aaah the blessings of being Dutch. No problems with slope-unfriendly buildings or whatever, we can just keep our land fairly flat and still consider it to be realistic.

My boyfriend, being of Dutch descent (like me) and having had the opportunity and fortune (some say misfortune :P) of visiting the Netherlands will agree with you completely about the flatness of the lay of the land.  ;D He would, however, view it as a curse more than anything else.  $%Grinno$%

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Offline paroch

Re: Evergem, The Netherlands
« Reply #11 on: October 16, 2007, 03:53:15 PM »
Hey Capo,

I'm glad you've started an MD and I found your tutorial very interesting.  So far I've only played on pre-formed maps, but I will be giving some of your methods a try anyway.

As you know from my MD, I use quite a few Dutch buildings so will be looking forward to seeing how a Dutchman puts them to use.  And hopefully there will be a few places where your sims can drink their Grolsch ;)




Offline threestooges

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Re: Evergem, The Netherlands
« Reply #12 on: October 16, 2007, 08:48:41 PM »
Well done capo. Also, for those who don't know, as an alternative to just using the mayor mode terrain options you can just use Shift + 1-9 to change the brush size and Ctrl + 1-9 for the effect of it, and you can sneak back into the God Mode menu by clicking it while holding Ctrl + Alt + Shift. This should be a very interesting MD, and this would also make a nice addition to the tutorial section. Consider putting it there too. Glad you posted this.

Offline tkirch

Re: Evergem, The Netherlands
« Reply #13 on: October 16, 2007, 09:41:16 PM »
Thanks for the great tutorial already used some of it in my city.  Excellent!!!

Offline jmyers2043

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Re: Evergem, The Netherlands
« Reply #14 on: October 16, 2007, 09:56:35 PM »
Nice tutorial. I do not have the patience to take the time to make a shore line like you. That is why I appreciate the amount of time it took you to create the scene that you entered into the picture competition. Others apparently agreed as it did make the 'hall of fame'

Well done on this first installment of your journal. I look forward to seeing more updates.


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Offline capo

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Re: Evergem, The Netherlands
« Reply #15 on: October 17, 2007, 05:39:17 PM »
Replies:
M4346: Dankie! I consider the flatness a curse sometimes as well, The Netherlands isn't one of the prettiest countries in the world :) Thanks for your kind words about my picture, much appreciated!

paroch: I can only hope that my Dutch buildings will grow into something looking as good as your MD, I wouldn't mind living in that Amstel corner you created. I hope that (in the modern version of this City) you will also find a good spot to reside!

threestooges: Those are some handy tips! I wasn't aware of the ctrl option to change brush size actually so big thanks to you! That tutorial section is a good idea, I'll have a look there first to see if there's such a tutorial already there

tkirch Thanks for dropping by, I hope the answers I posted to your questions helped you out some.

jmyers2043: Thanks for your visit, expect some familiar material for you in future updates of this region, as I mentioned earlier..I'm a big fan of your work :)

Part 2: The (fictional)city of Biroud, the Evergem Region:
Important mods / props:
* Watermod: PEG's Brigantine
* CP's Terrainmod: Meadowshire
* CP's ploppable rocks Brown ; Grey ; White
* JRJ's Slope and Tunnel Mod
* JRJ's Tree proppacks : number 2 ; number 3 ; number 4
* PEG's: Mountain Theme Pack + Addons
* SFBT's: Rural Power supply
* Deadwoods': BSC Forest Trail Lots

note: Even though the city is fictional, much of the history is not. I wouldn't recommend this MD for a school project or history presentation though, some stuff is completely made up ;) This update is also a dedication to a great movie, guess the movie for some extra points..

I would like to take you all back, way back into time. I would like to take you to the year 3000 B.C., the period where pictographic writing was created in Sumer, the time the Maya civilization started in South America and their invention of growing corn on designated fields to feed bigger cities. In Egypt the people and their faraos are starting to build Pyramids and more early civilization is on it's way for a few hundreds of years in Greece. Many great inventions are happening all around the world, but not in the part we are looking at today, right in the northern part of the Netherlands: Biroud


Here you see a landscape that is complety influenced by the Noordzee (North Sea). The tides control this rugged lands, the human nomad tribes that do live here can only walk from one 'island' to the other when it's ebb. This is the exact reason many tribes are still nomadic, only on a few selected places high above sea-level will have small settlements and even there you aren't safe.. Every now and then a superstorm sweeps away most things around the shoreline, it's a hard life living these days... Why do people want to live in this kind of area you might ask, well land that gets flooded every decade or two is extremely fertile. There's a lot of food available here if you know where to look for it or know how to grow it

Let's have a look at the central island. It seems that a nomad tribe called 'the Bir' has found a sweet water spring on a high piece of land, something quite rare close to shore in these salty regions. Are they here to fill their feedbags and then move on? or...let's have a look!
________________________________________________________________________________________________________



Aren't they a smart bunch! It looks like the Bir have finally found a place to call home. The Bir leader, the elder one (in Dutch: 'de oude') has blessed this settlement with his own name, from now on this village will be called Biroud! (Originally Bir-oude, wich with the sands of time turned into Biroud)

Right in the village's centre you can see the sweet water pool and the sacred mushroom shaped big rock. That rock is really a big deal for the Bir, it was sent by their gods a few days after they settled here and it's shape reminds the villagers of the fruits of nature, the rock must be worshipped if the tribe wants to have plenty of food. Four times a day the people of Biroud come to pray to the Gods at the altar at the left of the holy rock, hoping for sunny weather and the blessings of a good harvest. You can also see some small homes made of wood,straw, clay and...animal droppings. In each home a set of families and their livestock would live together, that with a fire burning in each home..must have smelled great!. There's even a small farm with some cows to feed the villagers and a 'bridge' leading towards a forest for some basic foraging. Wow they have come far in such a short period of time! Let's jump forward about 2500 years to the year of 500 B.C, I'm curious if this settlement is here to stay!
________________________________________________________________________________________________________



Oh my, this is starting to look like a serious village!

Please have a look at the wooden towers if you will. In times of big storm, all the people of the lower parts of the village can take refuge in several towers that are placed in Biroud. These towers are strengthened and have deep foundations to keep them at the same place, they are...by far not undestructable though.  But now when there does come a big wave, usually all it will take is your home and no longer your life! However, the people of Biroud have found a new way to fight these storms, but more about that later.
The homes are now made of stone, clay, wood and...animal droppings and look a lot more cosey (in Real life the homes didn't look at all like on the pic, but I couldnt find any better ones).
Did you notice the holy rock is now shattered to pieces? Well some long periods of famine, big storms and disease made the villagers curse their gods and now they have taken on a new set of gods. These days they only pray twice a day, the people of Biroud are hardworking and friendly people and their gods are a reflection of their characters. Without fear of the supernatural and Biroud's natural protection against enemy settlements, the people of Biroud are very happy and peaceful. Because of this Biroud is actually quite ahead of it's surrounding settlements. Take a look at the next pic for an example:
________________________________________________________________________________________________________



As you can see, some more cow farms are created at the edge of town and close to the small fishing port at the bottom you will see the village woodcutters working on 3 more homes, it looks like Biroud is really starting to blossom. Good for them!
________________________________________________________________________________________________________




This is Biroud's latest invention against storms I was talking about earlier. With a great collective effort the people of Biroud have made a big piece of elevated land, a manmade hill to live on and to be safe from the sea! For now all they built on it is the gathering place and lookout tower but Im sure that the rest of the homes will follow once this method of building has proven itself..

We can't say that the people of Biroud are the ones who should take full credit for this invention, many early settlements started to create manmade hills around 500 BC, in general they are called a terp but are also known as wierde, veenberg (in Dutch) or warft (in German).  This is a major breakthrough for these parts of North-Western Europe, now they will not have to rebuild their homes and towns after every storm or flood! Unfortunately it's still impossible to create dry land everywhere so the people would have more land to farm and live on..for this they will have to wait for another 1500 years. Thankfully it's possible for us to jump into time, so in my next update you will learn how Biroud developes into a farming metropole in the period of 500 BC - 1500 AD.

I hope you enjoyed.
« Last Edit: October 17, 2007, 05:44:32 PM by capo »

The complete history of Evergem ->My Mayor Diary <-
Come and visit Paroch Plein!

Offline Ennedi

Re: Evergem, The Netherlands
« Reply #16 on: October 17, 2007, 06:30:31 PM »
This landscape is really a great challenge for a city builder - and what you did here is a fantastic example of creativity!

I was very interested in your story - I didn't know anything about Netherlands prehistory ::)
Poland and all Eastern Europe was covered by large forests at that time, people travelled through them and settled in some places - mainly at the riverside or another good place to live. Their life was hard, but I think it was not as challenging as you showed in your story.
I am very curious what forced these people to come to the North Sea shore and live there, trying to protect themselves against storms and other hard conditions?

Your work is really great, I like it a lot! Some time ago I was thinking about showing some ancient tracks in my region ( I have a story about it too, it is also realistic but maybe in another meaning ;)) and my main problem was to find any objects to create such place :D
Your use of PEG Trails tunnel entrance is fantastic!  &apls
And PEG trails don't look as well ordered as usual
I like your story about gods and the holy rock :thumbsup:, and what you say about first attempts to make artificial hills is extremely interesting for me!

It seems I was right asking you for showing something from your showcase :D

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Offline douwe

Re: Evergem, The Netherlands
« Reply #17 on: October 17, 2007, 11:25:22 PM »
Very creative MD.  Love the Dutch prehistory, but of course I'm biased as I was born on the terp of the village 1 km from the Waddensea ( a shallow sand-barred section of the North Sea), but grew up largely among the hills of the Canadian Shield in Quebec and Ontario.  When do you get to the part about the Frisians and Batavians coming into Holland that mem (my Mother now 97) always  quotes as her introduction to history in grade school.

keep up the fantastic work. 

Douwe.
"As 't net ken sa 't moet, dan moet 't mar sa 't ken"
Old Frisian Proverb

Offline tooheys

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Re: Evergem, The Netherlands
« Reply #18 on: October 18, 2007, 05:48:41 AM »
Mate, that is a some great work putting that area together.  &apls

I like that you are not over-developing it.  Nice use of PEG props and what I guess are modified PEG trails  :thumbsup:

This MD is heading for big things.

Cheers

Dave


Offline bat

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Re: Evergem, The Netherlands
« Reply #19 on: October 18, 2007, 07:57:35 AM »
Great part 2 there, capo! Wonderful new pictures of Evergem! :thumbsup: