View Full Version : Making Starfields with Fractal Terrains

06-04-2008, 02:53 AM
FT does worlds, but it can be convinced to do something a little different: make a star field.

The general idea is to set the sea to black and the land coloring to a simple gray to white gradient, then set the sea level so that just the tops of mountains are showing. Of course, you'll need lots of mountaintops and setting the land roughness to very rough will do the trick.

Start FT and find a world. It doesn't really matter much what it looks like because we won't be looking at it for long.

06-04-2008, 02:54 AM
Open the Lighting and Color property page. On the Intensity tab, set the Shadows slider to None. On the Altitude tab, set the number of land colors to 2. Make the highest peak color white and the Sea Level color black. Set the sea number of colors to 2 as well, setting both the high and low sea colors to black. Click Apply. The world map will start to look a bit nebulous.

06-04-2008, 02:55 AM
Open the World Settings property sheet and Select the Primary tab. Run the Roughness slider all the way to High (0.01), the Percent Sea slider over to about 94 percent, and the Land size slider all the way to Small (10). Click Apply and you should have a basic star field. These effects works best with a couple more tweaks, however. On the Secondary tab, turn off Continental Shelves. On the Fractal Function tab, select Wilbur Fractional Brownian Motion (fBm) as the Method. Then click Apply.

06-04-2008, 02:56 AM
Adding a grid and changing the map projection can make a big difference. Of course, your version of FT may crash if you add the grid and then export an image file so I recommend taking a screen capture of the program window (Alt+Print Screen then paste into a graphics application) rather than saving the image from FT if you're using something other than the most recent FT Pro. This bug was fixed for the final FT Pro version.

Because it's FT you can also zoom in to an area to see more stars as shown in the second image.

06-04-2008, 05:01 AM
Brilliant! What a cool idea. Thanks Waldronate!

06-04-2008, 05:35 AM
Excellent! That right there is a very cool use of FT :D thanks for the tutorial Waldronate

06-04-2008, 06:14 AM
WOW! Coolios!

06-04-2008, 07:07 AM
Very Cool,

Now I have to make constellations for my game world :).