View Full Version : Balakovo

10-09-2009, 01:06 AM
This is being Created using a variety of tricks. Already need to redo the MUD layer to get smaller coverage areas. This is just the jump starter to let you guys know its coming.

10-11-2009, 01:07 AM
Ok so the last time I saved all it saved was the first three layers. So I had to start over again tried to get as much don as I could, but i'm getting tired.

The orange is a reference/place holder for the walls

Grey place holder for Roads

Red place holder for Buildings

To do:
Terrain Elivation
Beutify River
Rotate final image to fit in better with world map (one road towards south two roads towards north

10-11-2009, 08:20 AM
It looks good but there are problems with the bridges...the shadows. Using objects often produces messed up shadows due to rotating things to fit what you want. However, until you learn how to make your own objects I would say so far so good.

10-11-2009, 10:15 AM
Eventualy thats what I want to do (make my own objects) this will be a practice at designe and at general cuty building.

10-11-2009, 01:06 PM
Layout practice is a good thing. Looks like your using the city-designer thingy. That's a good place to start but it will always have weird streets. Use that as a loose framework and don't stick to it too rigidly.

10-13-2009, 11:52 PM
I was using, This tutorial (http://www.cartographersguild.com/showthread.php?t=1150) I tried your's for city mapping but between wrangling kids and other stuff going on I could not pay it the attention it deserved.

Also remeber I am using gimp and having to translate the PS tuts. Still getting use to some of the tools.

ok back to the work at hand. Acensions correct, every time I looked at that map my eyes are drawn to the miniscule details that are slightly off. The bridge drop shadows, the art of the buildings vary widely and are obviously mashed into the picture. So I went purist with the TUT and did my map in acordance to his. I still modified some of the things, textures used and what not. Oh hey for those with gimp the coffee bean texture that comes with it set to multiply over a nice road brown looks very good. I also added a rock in hardlight for my roads.

10-17-2009, 02:30 PM
Heres a cleaned up version with a title and some artistic touches... Ok just one art touch.

10-17-2009, 03:16 PM
Looks ok so far. Is the texture for the houses a placeholder or final?
The fold and brick wall look a bit out of place in this map.

10-17-2009, 04:04 PM
On the building texture not quite sure yet gonna start experimenting with creating my own building object type things. We will see how that works out.

The brick and fold where me playing with some of the artistic renders in gimp I will prolly wind up getting rid of them as they take away from the map a little to much.

Did you have a sugestion for the buildings?

10-17-2009, 04:25 PM
Well, it looks like the buildings have a bit of a mud texture at the moment. I am sure there are better textures out there, that work well with the realistic landscape (which looks good by the way, I like how you give the impression of height to the terrain).

I can't really help you with textures though as I am a Profantasy software user and that software comes equipped with houses in all kinds of different styles. Maybe another guild member can point you to some good textures.

10-20-2009, 10:35 AM
I can't say that I am a fan of the building texture, however I do like the overall layout of the town itself. One other thing that I am not sure that I understand is the river placement. It looks like the town is on a hill, and that the river cuts right through the middle of the hill. It wouldn't be natural for it to do that if there are lowlands all around the hill. On the other hand, if the hill were man made, then it would be fine.

10-20-2009, 10:52 AM
I can't say that I am a fan of the building texture, however I do like the overall layout of the town itself. One other thing that I am not sure that I understand is the river placement. It looks like the town is on a hill, and that the river cuts right through the middle of the hill. It wouldn't be natural for it to do that if there are lowlands all around the hill. On the other hand, if the hill were man made, then it would be fine.

Ok the real thing is this: I did my elivations by hand, in doing this I tried to insure that the river was lower than all other terrain by making that the only real black on the map. Well the end result was supose to be near cliff regions around the river (steep banks). It didn't turn out that way and it is somthing I need to work to perfect. You are completely corect that the town is on a hill and the river looks to cut through.

Heres the Game Master out the but method.

I could use two methods to describe this phenomena to my players.

Method1. The river was cut to the town, the Empire wanted to insure they had a town at the cross roads and tried manny times to seetle the area as is. Ultimatly each time fell, and the Legions where forced to either abandon their course of action or find a way to get water to the city. It was a scholar who decided to cut the (not sure what to call it). It took the empire 15 years and hundreds of slaves, manny of which died their bodies lying some where in the sandstone and mud covered bottom. The cut is a testimont to the might of the Empire for even the land itself can not dictate the actions of the children of the Radiance.

Method2. The area has already been declared riddled with ruins from an ancient civilization. Under the city sits one such ruin undiscovered, the river running down what use to be a broad avenue barried for over a thousand years.

The first one allows me to perpetuate the story by showing the "Might of the empire" i.e. shear stubborness. The second allows me to intigrate a part of an already mentioned idea into a beggining campaigne. If I put more though I probally could use both.

Hope this didn't come off too dickish just wanted to explain thank you for the C&C.

10-20-2009, 02:17 PM
I think the word you want there is Canal.

And I like the first explanation for the storyline :)

10-26-2009, 07:47 PM
Ok got back last night but was dead tiered. Did a bit of work on the map today several times (my daughter thought it was a fun game to turn my comp off befor I could save. Finally got somthing here.


This is placed here as a reference I went ahead and took of the page curl but otherwise left it as it was.


This is me starting to add the new buildings I have yet to go through and add shadows nor have I played with the images too much to make them look more inline with the map style.

10-27-2009, 07:51 PM
looking good shante. to make the river cut through the town maybe you should re-apply some more shade just the north of the river and some highlight to the south. Like you did in a previous version. And maybe add some rock/cliff texture there so it looks more like a deep cut.

10-27-2009, 09:26 PM
If you're going with the "Empire of Stubborn River Movers" option, then I'd suggest that you modify your map a bit to add "the old river"... if the river is within the maps boundaries.

I like the combination of "stubborn empire" plus "dead empire". It gives you a reason to have all sorts of elaborate ruins because there is a previous empire (e.g. Romans anybody?) who built all sorts of stuff and then collapsed because of [insert cause here or leave it a mystery].

10-29-2009, 09:35 AM
The explanation is a good one, and frankly, in a fantasy setting, almost any explanation will work.

However, what might be an even easier explanation, but still fit within option #1, is to say that they tried to settle the area, but when flood season came, it kept sweeping the city away. Eventually, the empire decided that the only way to keep a settlement here was to build up the land around the crossing. So for many years slaves brought in cart after cart of gravel and dirt to raise the surrounding ground up nearly 12 (or however many) Meters or feet. They simply poured the debris over the existing buildings and ruins, and now there may be some ruins below the settlement that may still be accessible. (think of the city of Acre/Akko among many others that has many ruins under it's streets)

10-31-2009, 04:27 PM
Ok here is some of the changes:

Did some brush work to bring out the elivation a bit more. (took me several hours and made me think about stealing my wifes Wacom tablet she got for school). Also this is the first test of a rocky texture along the more cliff like bases. I only did the one side due to shadow and light effects gave it a slight perspective.

10-31-2009, 04:30 PM
Looks pretty nice. The roads and river look a little dark but I can live with that and you might want to blur some of those lines that are appearing on the terrain. Overall, though, nice job. The forests looks great.

10-31-2009, 04:33 PM
Thanks I think I actualy used one of your tuts for them... With a bit of modification, ofcourse. I need to work on my roads alot, I also did a bit of blinding but I think I'll go back and test out the whole bluring thing (I'm taking it ou mean the lines that become visible close up?). This is still very much a work in progress.

10-31-2009, 10:05 PM
Ok did a bit of work added more buildings blurred the hightmap to get rid of artifacts, whent to the shade relied and with a 10% whight went over till the bridges stopped followin the terain. Lightened the roads, added some slight bumbmapping for texturing on some things, Dropshadowed curent buildings, Drob shadow on roads then aplyed a Layer mask of the river so that it placed shadow only on he water. And I'm sure I tweaked something else and didn't mention it.

10-31-2009, 10:08 PM
Just realized that I have to evict the orange building and rethink that whole idea... I'll leave for a place holder till the rest of my buildings are done.

11-01-2009, 12:44 AM
The shadows on the houses are a bit inconsistent Shan. Some of them are only possible with a northeast light, some southeast, and some southwest. If you're going to lock down your roof lighting, you need to angle the building before you do, or you'll wind up with an effect that displeases the eye, even if the brain doesn't understand why.

Let's say your light is coming from the southeast. A house running north/south would have light on it's east face, shade on the west face. A house running east/west would have light on the south face, shade on the north. A house running southwest to northeast would have light on its southeast face, shadow on the northwest.

But a house running southeast to northwest would have no shade, because the sun is looking down on both faces of the roof equally.

A house running northeast to southwest will have the most sun on the southeast face of any angle, because it directly faces the sun. The northwest face will be darkest of any angle, because it faces directly away from the sun. Each degree of rotation from that angle decreases both light and dark.

Because there are effectively infinite angles of rational, there are infinite amounts of sun and shade that you might need to faithfully reproduce. Practically speaking, it isn't nearly that bad, but it is still difficult enough that you really need to let Photoshop or Gimp or whatever do as much of the heavy lifting as possible.

On some complex buildings that have to be assembled largely ahead of time, I will produce eight different angles: 0, 22.5, 45, 67.5, 90, 112.5, 135, and 157.5, and then rotate them as needed. The amount of angle error doesn't seem to be a major problem. But as often as possible, I rotate to the final angle before locking them down.

11-01-2009, 09:12 PM
I thank you for the C&C, I'm using pre made buildings which inlies my Problem. Im also not sure how to go about letting Gimp do the heavy lifting or even where to start doing it my self. Also you went way over my head with the angles thing is that lighting nagles or some other angles? I think I'm going to go look for a Tut to start with.

I think my real problem is I want realy realy good looking maps...but do not have near the skill to do it.

11-05-2009, 08:34 AM
Ok so I wirked on the buildings for a log while, and was never truly happy with them. I re did the texture of the original block layer so that it was some what easier to look at. I will still be working on the buildings (I is stubern) but I need to move on with some of the other detail of the map. so for right now this will have to do

11-05-2009, 10:20 PM
Shanta> I'd be saying two things...

#1 Stroke your river along the flow of the river to make those little white dots become little streaks.

#2 Maybe adjust the bridges. They seem to have shadows that are out of whack. Or maybe it's the colouring of the rails.

11-05-2009, 10:41 PM
Yhea the bridge problem came when I further modified the terrain, it created a missmatch of the railings so then I went to fix that and here we are. I'll spend some time on my river and the bridges. Thanx for the C&C and the next line of work on this map

11-16-2009, 10:41 AM
OK did a lil work on bridges trying to get them more or less same color strokes. And then used a blure stroke on the river to get it to look like it was actualy moveing in the desired direction.

If any one has a good repository for symbols such as wogon wright inn and blacksmith it would be apriciated?

11-16-2009, 07:10 PM
There are a couple of sites out there with Heraldic ClipArt. They might be worth a try. I could also upload what I have. They are kinda small grainey GIFs but people with more talent could probably make similar things that still have that classic Heraldry look.

11-16-2009, 11:57 PM
That could work, I was think of stuff I could use for designating locations on this map. I'll see what I got I downloaded a few to mae the heraldry symbol in the bottom left corner there

Steel General
11-17-2009, 08:40 AM
There are also some heraldic fonts and photoshop brushes available.

11-17-2009, 11:35 AM
I've noticed two destinct things since being on this forum.

1. Photoshop is alot mor common for tutorials

2. There are a higher nomber of maps with great detail made with photoshop than their are with gimp. The few times that I have tryed seetings that would nomilay allow me that level of detail gimp got anurisms....

Might just have to steel my wifes Photoshop black lable..... I mean borrow.