PDA

View Full Version : [WIP] - Bordovilla



NatroN
08-05-2011, 06:33 AM
Well... posting right after EastHeaven Port is quite daring! LOL
Anyway... This is my first, humble, attempt at a town map... I've layed down the terrain. It is a small town built on a mountain river.
Any criticism is welcomed!
37559

mearrin69
08-05-2011, 12:49 PM
Good start. I'm assuming the top "loop" is an artificial waterway? If not, the river police may have something to say about it. Looking forward to seeing it develop.
M

eViLe_eAgLe
08-05-2011, 03:45 PM
This looks quite pretty..

NatroN
08-06-2011, 05:11 AM
Yes mearrin69, the upper one is an artificial trench and there will be fortifications too...
I'm doing some try at pseudo-3D with the fortifications, but it's too time consuming and sincerely while the walls and towers are not too bad (towers are still without shadows) I cannot find a way to make houses etc without actually draw them one by one, shadows and all.
The temple is made in a way more simpler style... Any suggestion is welcomed! :)

37576

NatroN
08-06-2011, 07:21 AM
Added Main roads... and started some texturing on the terrain...

37577

Steel General
08-06-2011, 08:05 AM
This is coming along quite nicely...

NatroN
08-06-2011, 12:36 PM
Some Houses and the manor added... not quite satisfied by the houses though... but I'm done for today.


37579

eViLe_eAgLe
08-06-2011, 04:17 PM
It is coming along nicely.

mearrin69
08-06-2011, 11:46 PM
Yep. That's looking pretty good.

Your problem with the houses may be that they're not squares and are looking a little 'carved' with a bevel on them. I suggest making yourself a palette of hard-edged building shapes that you can grab, copy, and rotate into place. Then, your bevel should give your crisper roof shapes. If you create the shapes in one layer you can marquee select them and then hold down the alt key while dragging to just grab a copy which can then be transformed at will until you deselect it. You can even stack them to get more complex shapes. If you don't want them to be all the same color you can wait until you're done and create a layer above, load the shape layer as a selection and then paint in colors or textures in just the areas where you have houses.

Hope that helps!
M

Edit: also noticed that you seem to have some holes in some buildings which is making your bevel look choppy in places. That can come from painting in <100% opacity or from missing a spot in the middle of the building. The good thing about the technique above is that it will completely get rid of that sort of stuff. Even in you don't do that, however, you can just grab a brush and dab around in your building layer until the 'hole' goes away.

NatroN
08-07-2011, 06:52 AM
This is my housing without effects. Basically I've already followed your avices except for regular shapes. I'll redo them with more regular and straight shapes. What isn't satisfying, mostly, is the effects. I'd like to have straw roofs, but I cannot find a way to achieve that look.

Hmm... Your "Village of Hania" map is almost exactly the look I'm searchong for...
http://www.cartographersguild.com/album.php?albumid=326&attachmentid=30203
but I don't know where to start: those tiny indents, the texture who follow the orientation of the roof... some advice on that will be greatly, greatly appreciated (you're an awesome cartographer btw! :) )
37593

mearrin69
08-07-2011, 12:15 PM
you're an awesome cartographer btw! :)
Nice of you to say. Thanks!

It all depends on how complicated you want to get with it. I find a single layer with a bevel layer style doesn't achieve what I want so I usually use multiple layers:
1) The base layer is the building shape layer. For Hania it was generated using RPG Citymap Generator, which basically spits out nice hard-edged building shapes. It's easy enough to do, however, with Photoshop's shape tool or marquee select (no antialias) and fill. However it happens, I'll create all of my buildings in a single layer (except maybe for walls, special buildings, etc.)
2) A bevel layer. I'll usually just create a new layer and select the contents of the base layer (ctrl-click the thumbnail in the layers palette) and fill that with white. Then I'll apply a bevel and get the settings where I want them. I'll usually set that layer to multiply (other blend modes can give different effects) so the layer just modifies what's underneath (letting you see color and texture).
2a) Photoshop's blend isn't perfect. If you want hard edges on your rooflines you'll also get an awful carved chunkiness wherever you've got lines that aren't horizontal or vertical. If I want hard edges I'll usually flatten the bevel layer (turn off blend and opacity before doing this) by creating a blank layer below it and merging down. Then I'll (painstakingly, by hand) go in and paint over that chunkiness to smooth out each side of the roof. Use layer and lasso select to only paint in the areas you want and use the eyedropper tool to choose the 'right' color for what you're painting depending on the angle to the light.
3) If I want texture I'll do that by placing a layer under the bevel layer and adding it there. If the texture is fine enough you can often get away with not having it aligned with the buildings (I took some shortcuts with Hania...it's only aligned on some of the buildings). You can do this in a lot of ways. Sometimes I'll fill a patch on a blank layer and then drag copies of that around and transform them and merge them into a single texture layer. If you don't care about alignment you can just apply a layer style of texture to the base layer. For my Haibianr maps I made the texture aligned to each facet of the roof. Just depends on how much 'accuracy' you want.
4) Shadows. I'll either add a dropshadow layer style to the base layer or, if I want to get more detailed, I'll duplicate that layer (filled with black) a number of times and shift each layer a little bit. When I'm done I'll merge those together and set a blend mode of multiply and turn down the opacity until I like it. I usually blur either the whole thing or, for more accuracy, blur each of the duplicate layers a little more the further they get from the building.

In Hania, I think I also ran an edge detect filter and created an outline for each of the buildings. That map's a little more impressionistic than I usually do so it works there. I do use edges/outlines in some of my more realistic maps but they're much more subtle.

Hope that helps. Will chime in if I think of anything else.
M

NatroN
08-07-2011, 02:19 PM
Woah Mearrin, thanks A LOT! I'll try that once I've had all layed out... since this is my first attempt I'm slow and have to go through a lot of try and error. I've found a setting that I like temporarely.

The image is reduced at 45% of the original.

Lot of things happened:
Changed the shape of houses and layed down a few blocks. How are they now?
Added the northern forest, still have to work on the particulars
Added a creek. Part of the moat was carved out from the final part of the creek, so now there's a waterfall. The main reason I've added the creek is because I have some problems: all the river has steep margins, so there was no place for the mill and lumber-mill to take water energy.
I'm not fully satisfied by the lumber-mill... the creek gives energy to the mill, but I know that the logs was usually transported using waterways... but there's no access now to the main river... maybe I'm too perfectionist, I know lol, but every advice on this is welcomed, as the lumber mill is one of the main encounter setting on my adventure.

houses scattered on the south-west are the basic shapes and will be erased lately

37608

mearrin69
08-07-2011, 03:54 PM
Yeah. Those buildings are looking pretty sharp! Forest looks good too.

Perfectionism is both a boon and a bane to the amateur cartographer. I suffer from it too. I take forever to make maps. Hania was actually a test run at putting something together quickly.
M

NatroN
08-08-2011, 11:40 AM
I've added an "halfling block" on the side of the small town's hill. I know there's a slight scale problem there, as those entrances are too big compared to the houses, but I'm quite happy with the overall look, and making those hobbit like entrances on the right scale will make them invisible :S

As always any critics is welcomed as I'm learning here! ;)

37631

mearrin69
08-08-2011, 04:56 PM
Very cool. They might be a little outsized but they look good. Some more emphasized paths between the doors and roads will really make it clear to the viewer what they're seeing.

Not sure I've ever seen anyone here include a hobbit district. Neat idea!
M

Justin Raven
08-09-2011, 11:45 AM
This is a really cool map, man. I like the sandy island sandwiched between the cliff faces. I can imagine standing on the beech and looking around. I work mostly traditionally, so I laud you on your creation. Very tight, evocative, and loving the narrative elements, here. Nicely done! :)

Steel General
08-09-2011, 12:13 PM
Nice, like the Hobbit-holes too!

NatroN
08-12-2011, 11:45 AM
Little Update:

Changed the creek flow and adjusted mill and lumber mill accordingly. Now they can use the last part of the creek and the river to transport the logs to the bigger towns and cities on the plains. I've also added some more houses and changed the palisades completely. At 50% (the resolution of the attachment) it's not so visible, but both the palisades and the towers are now more realistic (dotted like logs). I have to add the reinforcements needed to keep the palisade up. Oh... that fortification is still under construction, as you can see on the western side of it.

37723

NatroN
08-14-2011, 10:33 AM
Almost finished with the main layout of the houses.
Started the very big temple and ancient artifact on the western hill.
Tried some new tricks on the trees and bushes: do you like them? Any advice is welcomed.
Added a market too... still some work to do there, dim the shiningness etc...
37772

ravells
08-15-2011, 06:53 AM
Looking great! I love the hobbit holes and the market! The trees and bushes look really good. Keep going!

Steel General
08-15-2011, 08:02 AM
One thing I did notice is that your bridge isn't casting a shadow. No big deal, just wanted to point it out.

waldronate
08-15-2011, 10:40 AM
One thing I did notice is that your bridge isn't casting a shadow. No big deal, just wanted to point it out.

Vampire Bridge?

jfrazierjr
08-15-2011, 10:56 AM
Vampire Bridge?

ROFL... you crack me up....:D

Master TMO
08-15-2011, 12:02 PM
Vampire Bridge?

Does it go away during daylight? That would be inconvenient for traders...

NatroN
08-15-2011, 02:44 PM
rotfl! Love the vampire bridges idea! :)
anyway, they are little more than placeholders atm... my main concern is on the functionality side, as they *should* be lifted... but they are WAY too long compared to the houses... being my first city map (and second overall) I still have big issues dealing with the scales lol

NatroN
08-18-2011, 11:46 AM
Changed and added a bunch of things:

- South there is a very big tannery. That one is famous and produce some of the finest leathers and export all over the reign and beyond... one little drawback is the sewage water it produces. More toward the west there is the main warehouse with a pier. Notice the little telepheric to bring goods up and down the cliff. The main road was paved by the tannery owner and it stretches out to reach his big manor right above the hill.
He was basically the undisputed master of this town and his surroundings until some time ago. Attacks by goblins, trolls etc from the north were growing bigger and more frequent and people started to leave the region. The Tannery owner asked for some help to the King, hoping he'll send some soldiers, but the King decided to appoint a new Baron, after a lot of time and leave the issue to him.
The new Baron rebuild the manor, adding a new wall and started building a huge maw and palisade around the town. To convince the people not to leave, he reduced taxes heavily to the poorest one, becoming a hero for them... but maybe he will soon discover that Trolls would be the least of his problems in the future...

Sorry for my english :P
37878

Schattenherz
08-18-2011, 01:25 PM
Very cool! I love all the detail you put into it. Maybe you could try to lower the saturation of the water a bit? It looks too blue to my eye...

NatroN
08-23-2011, 09:34 AM
Worked quite a lot on this one!

Remade all the trees and forest as I was not satisfied, way better now in my opinion.
Changed saturation etc on all the water as per Shatternherz suggestion
Added the fisherman's house etc on the little island (it's not really a simple fisherman as you can see by the lavishing house... where do he get all those richness?
A huge amount of try and error gone into the southern fields, but now I'm quite satisfied and the final method is not too time consuming (excluding all the trying :P). The original houses and farms are now abandoned and ruined as the continuous trolls' attacks during the last time convinced the farmers to make a small, fenced village to better defend themselves.
The map is almost done... I really need C&C now :)

38009
38008

Moe
08-23-2011, 09:41 PM
Well done! I like it ;) Are you planning to put something within the empty walls on the island?

>Moe

RevGunn
08-23-2011, 09:55 PM
Almost looks like a satellite photo. Awesome work. Re-coloring the water helped a lot.

NatroN
08-24-2011, 05:19 AM
Thanks Moe and RevGunn!

@Moe: Yep, that whole area will be adjusted and completed. I'm documenting on castles and keeps floorplans right now, and waiting to have the basic plan schetched out so the keep can reflect the "real" plan I'll be using. My background story needs at least three subsequent "layers" there. Once built a long long time ago (watchtower); one around a century old (keep) and then the recent rebuild (bigger keep, walls and secondary buildings)... sometimes I think I'm a bit too ambitious lol!

Oh, there are still some things to be adressed, like the bridges. Are the ruined houses on the southern fields convincing enough?

captainwalrus
09-01-2011, 12:42 PM
Almost looks like a satellite photo. Awesome work. Re-coloring the water helped a lot.

Is it just me, or is part of it actually taken from google earth?

I may be crazy, but I swear that in one field it says the year and Google, which comes up from google earth if you zoom far enough in. I attached the cropped picture with the part I see it in circled.
38201

Besides that though, it is a great map! I love it.

Ascension
09-01-2011, 03:25 PM
Ya know, I do see something there. Can't read all of it but I do see something. But, it's not a cardinal sin to matte-paint things that ya can't get done by your own self...lots of folks have done it. I thought about doing it but never got around to it.

NatroN
09-02-2011, 08:15 AM
Well... you're absolutely right. I've found a field texture somewhere (googling for it), and it was clearly a fixed satellite view (houses and high tension towers, etc removed). I took the actual fields and rearranged to be used here. Didn't noticed the Google watermark, but this confirms something I already know almost for sure when I used it on first instance. If this is a problem I'll remove the fields and will rework them in another way. Considering that I'm not planning any use of this exept for my Pathfinder Campaign, I hope that Ascension's position could be embraced by the entire community :P

BTW... another "problem" with the fields (one being the watermarked one) is that they have really evident traces of heavy mechanization... those trails and signs could not be accomplished with animals etc :)

Ascension
09-02-2011, 04:09 PM
It's ok, mate. Lots of people take satellite shots and put them together, a few have even turned out very awesome. No one cares too much about it, so you're cool.

captainwalrus
09-02-2011, 09:38 PM
Well... you're absolutely right. I've found a field texture somewhere (googling for it), and it was clearly a fixed satellite view (houses and high tension towers, etc removed). I took the actual fields and rearranged to be used here. Didn't noticed the Google watermark, but this confirms something I already know almost for sure when I used it on first instance. If this is a problem I'll remove the fields and will rework them in another way. Considering that I'm not planning any use of this exept for my Pathfinder Campaign, I hope that Ascension's position could be embraced by the entire community :P

BTW... another "problem" with the fields (one being the watermarked one) is that they have really evident traces of heavy mechanization... those trails and signs could not be accomplished with animals etc :)

I think it is fine. It isn't really that obvious that it is watermarked, and I don't think anyone will be examining it enough to tell that it is heavily mechanized.

Coyotemax
09-02-2011, 09:47 PM
In regards to using google map images they're actually pretty lenient, and have an automated process (http://maps.google.com/support/bin/static.py?page=ts.cs&ts=1342531) for setting up terms of use for specific purposes.

It's incredibly easy to end up at the "fair use" clause which starts showing up after the second question.

NatroN
09-10-2011, 12:24 PM
I've read the Google thing and, actually, my use is fair, although not intended at first! lol
Thanks Coyotemax for the link.

The map is almost done, I think. I'm adding labels etc at the moment.

C&C are really welcome!

38446

Blaidd Drwg
10-08-2011, 09:18 AM
This is NOT a map. It's aerial photography :P Absolutely stunning!

eViLe_eAgLe
10-08-2011, 10:54 AM
Wow! This is really really good!!

Hugo Solis
10-08-2011, 11:00 AM
Looks super real. love the farmlands in particular :)

Gallifreyan
10-08-2011, 11:37 AM
Fantastic map! It is very realistic and the detail is great!

wynn
10-17-2011, 03:06 AM
Really nice work! I especially like the hobbit holes, its a nice touch.