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    • CommentAuthorLoopysue
    • CommentTime4 days ago edited
     
    LOL! Thanks Quenten :)

    I might have put fruit on the varicolour fruit trees, and might also be in the process of making a couple of varicolour flowering bushes, but I'm going to have to draw a line under this symbol set somewhere ;)

    Besides - they might not be coconut palms :)

    Darn! I forgot to do a banana tree!
    •  
      CommentAuthorQuenten
    • CommentTime4 days ago
     
    Hahaha :D
    • CommentAuthorLorelei
    • CommentTime4 days ago edited
     
    Posted By: Loopysuebut then I enjoy zooming into an FCW city and seeing that the trees look like real trees (within the bounds of the resolution of the symbols), every bit as much as the CC3 rooftops look like real rooftops ;)


    Me, too :)
    • CommentAuthorLoopysue
    • CommentTime4 days ago
     
    Well hopefully I won't disappoint you :)
    •  
      CommentAuthorDogtag
    • CommentTime4 days ago edited
     
    Loopysue explained:... I enjoy zooming into an FCW city and seeing that the trees look like real trees (within the bounds of the resolution of the symbols), every bit as much as the CC3 rooftops look like real rooftops ;)

    Sure, who doesn't? But there are limits to any map. For example, I don't think anyone reasonably expects to zoom in on a dungeon map to read the book or formulae on the alchemist's table. That would be hella-cool, of course, but it's generally understood that there's only so much detail in a map of a given scale. That's all I'm saying.

    Again, personally, I think a drop shadow gives a good-enough impression of the nature — and shape, frankly — of the palm trees even when zoomed in quite a bit. And I think it's a far better and more flexible solution/compromise than trying to make symbols with built-in shadows, which I think limits you even more, and which places extra constraints on you (or whoever's mapping). As you pointed out, you'd either have to make shadows for multiple directions (and mappers would have to choose them during mapping) or you take away the flexibility of how where they place their lighting. Also, the shadows are fixed in length, so the sun must be presumed to not only be at a certain angle but also at a certain zenith. *shrug*

    You're a far more talented and prolific mapper than I am, so this is just my 2 cents.

    I'm genuinely certain that whatever you end up doing will look amazing.

    Cheers,
    ~Dogtag
    • CommentAuthorLoopysue
    • CommentTime4 days ago
     
    Well, thanks Dogtag :D

    I was already thinking ahead of you along the same lines regarding built-in shadows. That's why I did them separately in the end. The files, unfortunately, are 1200 px so I can't upload them here. That means if you don't like the shadows you can delete the sheet that they are on and add your own shadow effects to the sheet the palm trees are on. I may just do it that way myself. I don't know yet, but the shadows are there for people who want them.

    Nearly finished making all the pngs for the symbol set. So far I have 4 ordinary oak-type trees that will double for general 'tropical forest', 3 palms to dot around, and 3 varicolour fruit trees for orchards or gardens.

    There are also four new fills, all at 1000 px so they aren't too great a burden as far as downloads go (I usually work with 2000 or 3000 px). These are sand, dirt, grass, and cobbles - all of which are previewed earlier in this thread as the background for the trees I showed.

    I'm currently working on rounding off the symbol set with 3 ordinary shrubs as undergrowth for the woodland/forest, and 3 varicolour flowering shrubs - again for gardens in the city, and you are more than welcome to call me nuts. I probably am :D

    I just enjoy doing it ;)
    • CommentAuthorWyvern
    • CommentTime4 days ago
     
    Have to admit I'm with Dogtag here in preferring just the standard drop-shadows. Y'see, some folks (mentioning no names, but I am typing this...) might want smaller/lower palm trees as well. And then they might look at the tree and think, "That would work for a low-growing cycad" - or even a fern, or a giant fern - depending on the type and scale of the map.

    Looking forward to the date palm variants too ;D!
    • CommentAuthorLoopysue
    • CommentTime4 days ago
     
    Thanks Wyvern :)

    The shadows are adjustable, and no one has to use them if they don't want to ;)

    Right at this moment. I'm going bananas :P
    • CommentAuthorLoopysue
    • CommentTime4 days ago edited
     
    I currently have my city set at 5000 units square. I render this at 10,000 px and reduce it to 5,000 px to antialias it. Unfortunately this means that the map is way too big to upload here. It also means that the houses are absolutely tiny.

    What I've decided to do is make a city that is in fact only 2,500 units square, and render it at 5000 px square with 50% antialiasing.

    Confused? Hmmm. Don't worry its taken me several hours to work this out.

    Even then I still get a map that's about 2.5 x too big in both dimensions to upload here. For the main part, then, I will further reduce the map to 1024 px square when I want to show the whole thing, and show extracts when I want to show details.

    This is what the detail will look like in the extracts I show you (another little test piece randomly slapped down in the middle of nowhere to test contrast and colour between tree symbols):
      City of Sanctuary 022.JPG
    • CommentAuthorLoopysue
    • CommentTime4 days ago edited
     
    Now with new and improved varicolour flowering shrubs...

    City of Sanctuary 03.JPG

    I think, in the interest of keeping the size down I'm going to stick with just the three palms, even though they are all the same tree in different colours. I've got what I wanted - a set of trees and flowering/fruiting shrubs to make a map of an exotic sub-tropical city with a hanging garden.

    And this is what it looks like when you zoom into the FCW
      Zoom snap.JPG
    • CommentAuthorGathar
    • CommentTime3 days ago edited
     
    Posted By: DogtagFor example, I don't think anyone reasonably expects to zoom in on a dungeon map to read the book or formulae on the alchemist's table. That would be hella-cool, of course, but it's generally understood that there's only so much detail in a map of a given scale. That's all I'm saying.


    I'm probably quite non reasonable, but I think it would be really cool to zoom on the book, see it contains a map of the planet, zoom on it until you get to the actual region, zoom again to find the dungeon, then zoom once more until you see in the dungeon the book that contains a map, then start zooming on it...
    •  
      CommentAuthorQuenten
    • CommentTime3 days ago
     
    Sue, I can't see the grubs and bees
    •  
      CommentAuthorQuenten
    • CommentTime3 days ago
     
    Just teasing
    • CommentAuthorLoopysue
    • CommentTime3 days ago edited
     
    Posted By: Gathar...I think it would be really cool to zoom on the book, see it contains a map of the planet, zoom on it until you get to the actual region, zoom again to find the dungeon, then zoom once more until you see in the dungeon the book that contains a map, then start zooming on it...

    So cool it would be hot :)

    Posted By: QuentenSue, I can't see the grubs and bees

    Well they are there! Honest :P

    Posted By: QuentenJust teasing

    I know!
    •  
      CommentAuthorMonsen
    • CommentTime3 days ago
     
    Posted By: GatharI'm probably quite non reasonable, but I think it would be really cool to zoom on the book, see it contains a map of the planet, zoom on it until you get to the actual region, zoom again to find the dungeon, then zoom once more until you see in the dungeon the book that contains a map, then start zooming on i
    Using vector graphics, this would be possible, if not particularly practical. Not with unlimited levels though.
    • CommentAuthorLoopysue
    • CommentTime3 days ago
     
    I've thought of another way to deal with the size of the city versus scale problem - the one where my city has had to be shrunk, just so that I can render it all in one go.

    First I thought that I would cut it up into grid squares 2x2 or even 3x3 (not the map, but the way I render it out to upload), but then I thought of the way that detail road maps are done in road atlases - how areas of interest, like the docks , or the palace, or some other area makes a map, and how these frequently overlap.

    I'm considering going back to the 5000 px square size (a simple matter of scaling it all up again that takes about 5 seconds), and establishing 'render rectangles' marking out key areas of the city, and making a series of maps of the city from the one city map.

    That would only be for display here at the forum. The FCW would be the entire city.

    Any thoughts on that idea?
    •  
      CommentAuthorQuenten
    • CommentTime3 days ago
     
    That is a great plan. That way I get to see the grubs in the bushes
    •  
      CommentAuthorMonsen
    • CommentTime3 days ago edited
     
    Posted By: LoopysueI'm considering going back to the 5000 px square size (a simple matter of scaling it all up again that takes about 5 seconds), and establishing 'render rectangles' marking out key areas of the city, and making a series of maps of the city from the one city map.

    That would only be for display here at the forum. The FCW would be the entire city.
    I would actually suggest making this as a series of fcw's. One for the entire city, but without the extreme detail level. Then separate zoom-in maps of interesting areas in the city, using a very high detail level (not just higher detail textures, but additional symbols and everything to make more detailed scenes).
    This will result in a complete city map, that while still pretty, is also more friendly to lower end machines, and some truly beautiful city sections as seperate maps (which also are computer friendly, because they simply doesn't contain the entire city). These maps would be hyperlinked the same way as the rest of the atlas, so you can just click through into them.
    It also means you wont have to put the same extreme effort into every single section of the city.
    • CommentAuthorLoopysue
    • CommentTime3 days ago
     
    That's a really great idea, Remy :)

    Being me, however, I will make the 5000 px map complete, then slice copies of it up into smaller portions - each with a small overlap with its neighbours. I will then create the main reference map last of all by reducing one of those copies to about 1250 px square and grossly simplifying it.

    If I delete the STRUCTURES (SHADING) layer on the small scale reference map, will I leave behind just the layout of the buildings like an OS map?
    • CommentAuthorLoopysue
    • CommentTime3 days ago
     
    Sorry Quenten - I forgot to send the bee and grub pngs to Remy, so I'll have to map it without them now ;)
    •  
      CommentAuthorQuenten
    • CommentTime3 days ago
     
    Mr Caterpillar won't like that
    • CommentAuthorLoopysue
    • CommentTime3 days ago
     
    Ah but your computer will love it. I'm hoping the entire thing, catalogue, pngs and fills of all resolutions, will be a whole lot less than the 50MB limit I set for myself for the project to make it less of a bind downloading it - positively lightweight in fact, since I won't be using much else. The maps should be fairly fast to move around in (I hope)
    •  
      CommentAuthorMonsen
    • CommentTime3 days ago
     
    Posted By: LoopysueThe maps should be fairly fast to move around in (I hope)
    Remember that that amount of entities and effects are more important for performance than sheer file size. City maps are generally rather slow from the start, because they contain many entities and effects. Even a plain CD3 Bitmap A city is rather slow on most computers, especially when it gets a bit large (like your city seems to be).
    • CommentAuthorLoopysue
    • CommentTime3 days ago
     
    Thanks for the clarification Remy ;)

    I'm already planning to use minimal effects - deep thought currently going into just exactly how many sheets I really need to create the ocean effect. Right at the moment I've got it down to just 2, from the 4 I used in Merelan City. There are also only 2 effects on each of those sheets, rather than 4. The cost is that the water may look a bit plain in comparison with Merelan city (I used blend modes to get that effect), but it will be a lot faster.

    Merelan City was taking nearly a minute to zoom when working on the final details with the effects turned on (which I had to do because the map was unrecognisable without them). I also had 8 full sets of landscape stacked, one on top of another to get the full effect of the cliffs (8 rock sheets, 16 grass sheets, 8 road sheets, 32 building sheets - two sets of buildings, each split into 8 island levels with different shadow settings for being in the shade or the sunlight... etc). There will only be 2 landscape levels in Sanctuary.

    Question: If I use automatic buildings instead of standard symbols, will that make the situation worse, or better?
    • CommentAuthorHadrianVI
    • CommentTime3 days ago
     
    Just amazingly beautiful. I can't wait to see the whole map.
    • CommentAuthorLoopysue
    • CommentTime2 days ago
     
    Aw thanks Hadrian :D

    I'm working on the basics at the moment - layout, ocean, how to show the relief, etc...

    Hope to post a general update soon ;)
    •  
      CommentAuthorMonsen
    • CommentTime2 days ago
     
    Posted By: LoopysueQuestion: If I use automatic buildings instead of standard symbols, will that make the situation worse, or better?
    According to some quick measurements, the automatically generated buildings perform better than symbols, at least on my system.
    • CommentAuthorLoopysue
    • CommentTime2 days ago
     
    Oh thanks for working that out, Remy! I didn't realise you would have to try it and see. I thought you would already know.

    So if they make less demand on the system, house for house, its actually a good thing that I was thinking of using them for the more densely populated areas :)
    • CommentAuthorLoopysue
    • CommentTime2 days ago
     
    After a lot of steps in both directions (forward and backward) I've more or less got the main parts of the water in place.

    Remy has very generously done all the symbol and fill set up over the weekend, so now that I have the basics in place I should start to move a lot faster now.

    (Well that's the theory anyway ;) )
      City of Sanctuary 04.JPG
    • CommentAuthorJimP
    • CommentTime1 day ago
     
    Wowsers. Treeeees !
    • CommentAuthorLoopysue
    • CommentTime1 day ago
     
    Thanks Jim :)

    I'm guessing you are referring to the last but one image I posted?

    Those are the very same tree symbols that Remy has so kindly arranged into a catalogue that will eventually be available in the Atlas resources, so that you will be able to open the City of Sanctuary map and see it without any red crosses :)

    As I understand it (and my understanding is never more than vague when it comes to software) the catalogue will be set up so that you can use it to create other maps in the Atlas folder, but it won't work if you just dump it and the pngs in the usual CC3 folders. That's just an unfortunate side effect of setting it up so that it WILL work with the Atlas set up.

    ....

    Since I'm here and typing away, I wonder if anyone knows how to draw one of those onion domes you see a lot of on Russian Orthodox churches - a dome with a spire coming out of it. I have a fancy to make one in shaded polygons to use around the palace to make it look a bit more special.
    • CommentAuthorLoopysue
    • CommentTime1 day ago
     
    Ok well... I know how to draw the flat version. I just haven't got the foggiest idea how to sort out what angle each plate should be tilted at (between vertical and flat, that is), when I redraw this thing in CC3.

    Any geometrically inspired ideas?
      the flat onion dome.JPG
    • CommentAuthorLoopysue
    • CommentTime1 day ago
     
    I've sort of worked it out now, I think.

    Does this look about right?
      onion dome.JPG
    • CommentAuthorJimP
    • CommentTime1 day ago
     
    All of the trees look great.
    • CommentAuthorLoopysue
    • CommentTime1 day ago
     
    Thanks Jim :)
    • CommentAuthorLorelei
    • CommentTime1 day ago
     
    Well THAT is pretty darn cool, Sue.
    • CommentAuthorLoopysue
    • CommentTime1 day ago
     
    Thanks Lorelei :)

    I'm really tired now, and I'm not sure if its the fading light or the thinking I had to do to work out how to do it! LOL! Geometry - particularly 3D geometry, is not a subject I really care to get into unless I have no choice.

    Anyhow - its done now, and because its just a bunch of shaded polys I can change the fill and use it with different roof types.

    If you ever want to use it in other maps you will be able to copy and paste it from the FCW :)
  1.  
    Well, your skill with art is truly amazing Sue! I love what you are doing here!
    • CommentAuthorLoopysue
    • CommentTime1 day ago
     
    Aw thanks Tony :)

    The truth is, though, that the trees are mashed together from a large set of Blender renders, and although I certainly did the geometry all by myself the beauty of the dome is all down to CC3 shaded polygons, and CD3 slate roof texture ;)
    • CommentAuthorLoopysue
    • CommentTime1 day ago
     
    I did so much thinking and dome building today that I only had a small amount of time left to start laying things out before I was too tired.

    This is the palace on top of the rock, on which the hanging gardens will grow, and from which the waterfalls will gush.

    When I started using more than one colour on the new onion domes it became obvious that I needed to do them with more segments. The shading isn't that good on some of them because of the stripes and patterns I tried using, but I'm not going to worry too much about it now. Maybe there's a possibility for a dome symbol set further down the road, but not with this map.
      City of Sanctuary 05.JPG
    • CommentAuthorHadrianVI
    • CommentTime1 day ago
     
    beautiful and so well executed. Can't wait to see the rest:)
    • CommentAuthorLoopysue
    • CommentTime1 day ago
     
    Thank you Hadrian :)

    All those scattered multicolour buildings down at the bottom got left in the shot accidentally. I was playing around with the automatic buildings to see what I could do with the built in CD3 roof textures, instead of using any more of my own.
    • CommentAuthorpixelkitteh
    • CommentTime23 hours ago edited
     
    This is so gooooooood wow I can't wait to see more, keep up the amazing work! <3
    • CommentAuthorLoopysue
    • CommentTime23 hours ago
     
    Thank you pixelkitteh :)

    I'm working on it ;)
    • CommentAuthorLorelei
    • CommentTime21 hours ago
     
    Sue, those domes are insane!!!!! I LOVE them! I a so excited for this city to be on my little island :) And i can't wait till i've completed my project so i can get back to contributing!
    • CommentAuthorLoopysue
    • CommentTime20 hours ago
     
    Aw thanks Lorelei :D

    I can't wait to see more of your glorious maps here myself :D
    • CommentAuthorLeuphana
    • CommentTime18 hours ago
     
    Brilliant works Loopysue!
    • CommentAuthorJimP
    • CommentTime15 hours ago
     
    Fantastic !
    • CommentAuthorLoopysue
    • CommentTime11 hours ago
     
    Aw thanks guys :)

    Haven't quite got it right for another update tonight, but hopefully there will be one before the next day is out.
    • CommentAuthorLoopysue
    • CommentTime3 hours ago
     
    This is just an extract so you can see the detail I've been working on. This is the Garden of Heaven - about a fifth of the top surface of the hanging gardens around the palace.
      City of Sanctuary 06.JPG