View Full Version : Starting new world with Fractal Terrains Pro / Wilbur / Photoshop need suggestions.

08-14-2011, 02:07 PM
Hello everyone!

I'm new to these forums and have been looking at alot of the tutorials on here and am trying to get a world made with realistic weather, rivers etc... for a new roleplaying campaign.

Here is what I have done so far.

I have Fractal Terrains Pro, and have followed this great tutorial: http://www.ridgenet.net/~jslayton/CGTutorial/index.html

I have my base world looking good, and I want to start some erosion, thus I have looked at this awesome looking tutorial: http://www.worldofgotha.com/PF_TUTORIAL/israh_index.html

Now, I need a little help in getting my world eroded naturally and I want my rivers to look natural like in the images of the second tutorial. Is there any "easy" road to erosion and river making or is alot of it trial and error?

Any advice or other tutorials pointed my way would be great!


08-14-2011, 05:25 PM
Hi Casenote and welcome to the guild. As far as I know there is isn't an easy method to erosion and river making....it's lots of small incremental steps. I've got FT Pro and Wilbur and I'm still struggling with trying to replicate some of the great maps here with superb rivers. You've got the two best tutorials I've found (and the Israh tutorial gives you a lot of others to look at). No one button press silver bullet I'm afraid (at least that I know of).

08-15-2011, 09:03 AM
Ok, thanks for the info! I've mesed with it some more and seem to getting some better results...

I am having an issue in Wilbur whenever I do a Fill Basin (at whatever value [-2, to +3), it just flattens my map totally. Anything I am doing incorrectly here?

08-15-2011, 10:36 AM
The most likely thing that will cause Fill Basins to flatten your map is that the map is roughly in the shape of a bowl and Wilbur is filling the bowl. If you're not careful, it's possible to get the outermost ring of pixels higher than the rest of the landscape. Then Wilbur will see the whole map as a basin.

As far as the parameter for fill basins, it has two main ranges: less than 0 (Wilbur will calculate a value for you that is greater than zero based on surface dimensions and the desire to avoid perfectly flat fills on the basins) and greater than or equal to 0, where the parameter will determine the slope in the filled areas (0 is completely flat).

08-15-2011, 04:58 PM
I tried with all -1, 0, & 1 and still get this after fill.


Am i a fool?

08-15-2011, 08:44 PM
I've never seen that behavior before. Judging from the black spot disease in the first image, this data came from Fractal Terrains Pro via an MDR file, correct?

In Wilbur, if you do Window>Histogram, what does the system show for the low and high values?

My guess is that the black spots represent infinities, which will completely eat your surface from a fill-basins perspective, I think. If your version of FT doesn't have the Tools>>Actions>>Normalize Data feature, try pestering ProFantasy tech support for version that does, then use that tool. I will try to remember to add a similar tool to Wilbur, but I don't know when I'll have time to get around to it.

08-16-2011, 09:20 AM
alright great! I'll take a look, thanks for the information! I was wondering what those black dots were.. I've actually gotten it to work on wilbur using a new FT map.

Thanks again,

09-17-2011, 08:24 PM
if you have the black spot issue (which i had on my gotha planet!! #@(&@*!@) then you wont be able to do any broad effect to the entire map without leaving that spot out (thats why you got that flattening effect). You do this by selecting a range .. i used +100,000 to -100,000.... the problem is from FT. It's a glitch in Pro but i thought they'd fixed it? Anyhow it's seeing that as - infinity i believe. As for wilbur.. my tutorial is a bit over-reaching in how many steps i used (i'm more efficient at it now) but the basic premise of selecting in steps and varying the settings will get you a semi realistic erosion. As for flat areas i use this trick to avoid straight rivers...
(make sure you save BEFORE you try my tip just in case it doesn't work :-D)

Select flat areas,

contract selection 5px,

expand selection 6px,

feather 1,

add % noise; play around with percentage noise it depends on how high above sea level it is.. the lower the land the higher the percentage noise you'll want to add but don't overdo it either

Expand selection 5px,

fill basins (default setting),

now run your rivers and it should come out all right.

hope this helps..