View Full Version : Drawing a mid-ocean ridge with FT3

01-05-2013, 04:49 PM
Hi everyone ! I recently bought FT3 to start designing my new fantasy world, and I'm trying to give it a realistic look.
After some research, I figured out that FT3 does not provide tools for geology matters and so. Fair enough, I'm not afraid to draw the landscape myself !
Although, when I try to paint the mid-ocean ridges with the raise brush, the (glimpse of a) result is pretty ugly, as you can see.
I wish I had :
- the same noisy look that has the ocean floor
- a randomized-like path for the ridges (by hand, when it doesn't look like a straight line, it's even worse)
- a realistic width and altitude for the mountains

I know some of these can be made with the Global Noise tool and a brush set on Value instead of Rise, but it does not solve all the problems and it has a uniformish look that I don't really like.

I would be grateful if anyone give me some idea regarding the tools I could use to make that work. Thank you !


01-05-2013, 07:18 PM
Tutorial for Cartographer’s Guild (http://www.ridgenet.net/~jslayton/CGTutorial/index.html) offers some suggestions for getting better painting results in FT3. As far as good overall results, the secret should be to use prescale offset editing with lots of little strokes and very low values (build up the mountains).

The best solution might be to use a clone stamp tool in an external tool like the GIMP to copy real-world mid-ocean ridge data to the desired location in your world. This technique bypasses FT except for final assembly, but it can generate excellent results.

01-07-2013, 12:55 PM
Hi ! Thank you for this quick answer. The prescale offset brush was the one I used, but I found it pretty inaccurate for this task. I don't even fully understand the difference between offset and prescale offset (and the fact that I'm not a native english speaker does not help), but I tend to use the prescale offset rather than the "normal" offset. I also tried to use the math tool, multiplying the prescale offset by a constant to raise/flatten an area by an amount depending on the former altitude. Though addition and subtraction worked perfectly (but didn't manage to give the "gradient" side of the operation), multiplication and division had no effect. Maybe I am totally misunderstanding what it truly does. The gradient tool on the other side was quite useful but affects the terrain too uniformly. It is unusable for mid-ocean ridge as I cannot affect complicated shapes with it.
Regarding the copying of real-world mid-ocean, it is actually a pretty good idea. I found this link on The Genesis of Israh tutorial : The Welsh Piper » FT Pro and Real-world Data (http://www.welshpiper.com/ft-pro-and-real-world-data/)
I hope it will give me a good start.

01-08-2013, 04:40 AM
A mound in the prescale offset channel would probably be the right tool, but I never got around to implementing that feature. There are a number of other good algorithms that would work, but I don't have them in FT. Ah well. Maybe a future version will see new toys.