View Full Version : Small castle village

02-07-2014, 04:33 AM
I'm starting a map of a castle on a hill. I think I'll build a little village surrounding it. Its late so I won't finish tonight. The image looks small, but it's just one part, the map will cover a much larger area, eventurally. Here's what I got so far... (I call it a WIP, but this should be finished tomorrow.)



02-07-2014, 09:28 AM
It looks REALLY good :)

Trying to figure out what that spot is, though, by the tree at the right ? :)

02-07-2014, 11:34 AM
A graphical anamoly on the rock texture - I'll cover it up, once I move ahead with this.

02-07-2014, 11:46 AM
Oh oops :P

Well I really like how you did this.... I wish I could get that 3D effect on my stuff >.<

02-07-2014, 11:54 AM
Bevels and shadows (and nice textures in use) in Xara Photo & Graphic Designer 9 is my secret!

02-07-2014, 01:21 PM
Great job GP

02-07-2014, 09:30 PM
Thanks, KenG!

No village yet, but I'll get there. Placed my need for a water feature with 2 creeks merging, a bridge, and some of the surrounding area. I might finish tonight, or I might be lazy and take more of the weekend - progress though.



02-07-2014, 10:59 PM
Would I be right in sensing a slight japanese influence with regards to the castle design - what with the divided long winding route up the hill and the surrounding walls?

Looks great so far I think.

02-08-2014, 03:52 AM
Buildings next. I guess its grown from a village to a very small town, now that there is a proper town wall. I'll finish this tomorrow. I have another hour into the map.

@Larb - I see what you mean, perhaps I am influenced subconsciously. My intent was to show an approach road winding up a rocky promitory. I thought adding some extra defenses might make the small castle slightly improved.


02-08-2014, 10:32 AM
How do you DO that with the grass? Grunge it up, make it more dirt without losing the feel that it's the same piece of land? >.<

*kicks my own maps* :(

02-08-2014, 01:50 PM
@Jalyha - after I created the roads/streets within the city walls, I created a shape that was just slightly smaller than the interior space of the walls, using the same image fill (gravel) as the roads themselves, but I gave it a fractal transparency (to show the grass texture beneath, peaking through), applied a 2 inch feather, and applied an overall 35% transparency. I moved that shape beneath the streets of the town, but above the grassy layer. This is how I created that grunge effect.

02-08-2014, 02:03 PM
:D OHHHH. That works so much easier than I thought >.< Thanks!!

02-08-2014, 10:26 PM
Only thing left to create is a Cathedral/Hospital/Academy and a fancy Inn to complete the town map. Almost done!



02-08-2014, 10:51 PM
This is really great :)

I first wanted to say.. I like your farms a lot... the way they are laid out is wonderful... most people have too straight rows and yours are perfect ! :)

That's a lot of dirt showing, though for most crops... works for some though - like corn :P And probably more so, when people didn't have fancy machinery for harvesting :)

but... and I'm only getting nitpicky cause most of your stuff seems SO real... the ground is too dry. You've got a big ole strean/river full of fresh water, and comparing it, size-wise to the crop fields, it's more than enough to supply their needs. Based on the (almost too vibrant) green of the crops, they're doing well, and that means moist, fertile soil.

Even if it's been a dry year, or it's... as you have here, a rocky climate, you have to break up the soil before you plant in it so it wouldn't be flat and cracked. It'd be like...


That's pretty dry for planting :/ but still broke up.

Good moist soil you'd use for planting with plenty of water gets darker, brighter. Like...


Something else that makes it darker/richer is... well.. fertilizer. They'd use animal droppings (prolly from the stables, but any dung will do... during hard times it's thought that people would even use.. well... human...stuff. >.< )

Then, for cold nights, once the plants started to sprout, they might cover a field with hay/straw to keep em warm... but idk what your climate is.

So... prolly you'll want darker ground, with few "cracks"... but maybe crisscrossed with some pale... straw colored stuffs (about the more yellowy color in your current fields, actually)

Probably no one cares about petty stuff like that at this point but me, but in case you do care.. there it is :)

Also I was wondering what the thing is in your lower left side field? I can't make it out on my tiny screen!

And feel free to ignore me, since I only wish I could even make somethin half this good :P

02-09-2014, 12:31 AM
Excellent work GP! This is turning into one of my favorite of your maps. I really like the cliffs and the river. The water effect is fantastic, but I wonder if it isn't just a little to blue. Minor point though, and it may just be my monitor is to bright.
Looking forward to seeing it finished.

02-09-2014, 12:41 AM
Wouldn't that depend on what it is?

Like... rivers are usually more green/brown, but he called this a creek... well ... streams usually have a blue/white color, (in my experience... I guess creeks could be either... Ours were different colors dependin on how close you got in toward an actual "town"... village ones were pretty clear.

Then again, I suppose clear = brown too, since all ya see is dirt and rocks under there :P

GOSH Ya'll have River Police, but where are the CREEK COPS?

(Been waiting to use that joke since I signed up here! Yay.)

02-09-2014, 01:04 AM
Good points Jalyha. Rivers & streams can be a lot of different colors depending on the river bottom and sediment. I have seen green rivers, but brown and grey are most common.
With very clear water and a light colored stone bottom it would be possible to have a blue effect just like a tropical Caribbean beach with it's white sand and clear water.

02-09-2014, 01:36 AM
Yep :)

And, Oh, brown rivers or green... it just depends on what's around 'em.

Water *reflects*, so yeah, you get up close and it's real dark, maybe brown or grey, and you can see your face and the clouds in em no matter what color they are, but from up on a hill (or hangin out in a tree hidin from your brother) the water looks different. If it's a big open area, it's usually grey, cause you're seeing nothing but the sky above and the rocks below... or a dark, brownish grey from dirt movin on the bottom, and the sky above.

If it's a BIG river, then there isn't much reflection but the sky, except on the edges (which will be lighter) and LOTS of dirt moving cause the water is moving with more force.


Smaller rivers, with trees lining the sides... those are green. Usually dark, and brownish, but green. Cause the trees reflect too

And if the water is clear enough (or if there's not a lot of momentum in it... think slow-moving, lazy rivers, you'll get green from the moss growing down below.

Light stone and blue sky... yeah that's blue water (and what you usually see in a stream, to a degree) but usually a greyish blue.

You get that bright blue/caribbean feel with that same stone, and clear water, but MOSTLY you're seeing the sky reflecting, same as any other waters :)

Where was I going?

Oh yeah.. water can look just about any color, but it depends mostly on 4 things:

What is under the water?

What is OVER the water?

How fast is the water moving? (*or rather, with how much force?)

How WIDE is the expanse of water?

(and in more modern times, what's IN the water... litter/pollution adds color too, a little at a time.

Buttttttttttttttttttttt overall... from high up:

More buildings/people = a little more brown, the water is either *browner* or *blacker*(for blue water) the higher up you go (at least till you break cloud cover), and narrower waters are lighter in color :)

Standin in a creek bed in the middle of rural illinois, I can see the individual stones under my feet, and the water right under me has no color at all, but off to the sides, it's green as the hills around us.

Same size/type of creek in the outskirts of the city, the water's mud brown and I can't see my toes :)

Standin on the bridge between Hannibal and Quincy (well West Quincy and Quincy, but still) or between St Louis and East St Louis, lookin out in the middle of the mississippi (one of the brownest rivers you ever saw) with nothing but the steel of the bridge and the blue sky above, it's real dark blue... like the ocean :)

Or black at night

With little white shimmering sparkles all over the water.


(bit of an obsession here)

Edit: Found a pic to show the reflection thing... water goes blue, grey, YELLOW, green, brown, black :P


02-09-2014, 05:08 AM
Final map.

@Bogie - I 'greened' up the main river.

@Jalyha - I didn't change the crop field, though you are right in that its not perfect scale. I'll make it smaller in the next map. All I really needed was to have it easily understood what is farmland and what is not. I tried to darken up the ground beneath the crops, but it looked too dark, so I kept it as is. Good suggestion, though, but I'll consider it for the next maps.

I created 3D versions of the church (large walled section near the west gate) and the tavern (just south of the town side of the bridge), and created 3D shadows (as Jalyha and I discussed on another thread.)

I'll post this in the final maps forum.



02-09-2014, 12:55 PM
Oooooooh now I see what to do with those shadows!! :)

And your river/creek/stream/waterthing looks excellent ^.^

02-13-2014, 06:54 PM
Looking great! I love the water now. It was little blue in the beginning, but Hell, looked great from the beginning. Really like the layers of land leading up to the castle.

02-14-2014, 07:17 AM
It looks really good. As an author it could inspire one or more stories. As a Game Master of different genres I can see it being used in different adventures. As a war gamer, I would not want to try to take the castle through the village. Nicely done.