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Thread: Ice caps and Fractal Terrains?

  1. #1

    Default Ice caps and Fractal Terrains?

    Hello all, so I went ahead and bought Fractal Terrains and I'm loving it so far. Basically, I was wondering how exactly I would go out about putting in ice caps - I realise this may require me to edit using some other program.

    For example I create a world and I am happy with it - what format do I export it on to edit in GIMP? Are there any tutorials on how to draw ice caps in GIMP? (Or the terraformer - I'm not quite sure how this works as I'm totally new to everything).

    Also, how would I export say - just the coast lines in order for me to edit it to make a political style map?

    Finally, is there any way I can create a contour style map from a fractal terrains world map (is this possible on GIMP, or CC3 or something else?)

    Sorry if the questions seem a bit basic, but I keep getting lost and any pointers would be much appreciated.

    Many thanks!

  2. #2

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    I believe it's been said that if you drop the temp below -10 or -40, the terrain shading will show ice instead of water. I haven't played with that yet myself yet. But if that's true, run a selection from the arctic circle on up and lower the temp until ice starts showing. Then I guess you can warm up spots until you have the ice cap you want.
    My Finished Maps | My Planet Maps | My Challenge Entries | Album: Pre-generated Worlds

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    Assuming I stick with fantasy cartography, I'd like to become a World Builder, laying out not only a realistic topography, but also the geopolitical boundaries and at least rough descriptions of the countries and societies.

  3. #3

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    Thanks, I will have to try that - my problem is though, if I do this, won't it just show with the climate colours, and not the usual globe-like colours? I want more or less an altitude view, with ice caps, can this be done? Thanks again

  4. #4

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    Well phoo. I had thought it would show up using an Image Climate, but it doesn't look like it does. It seems to only show using the Climate or Gaia views. I guess you could export as two layers and copy the ice from the Climate onto your regular terrain layer, but it's a bit of a workaround. Sorry, I'm not sure what the answer is.
    My Finished Maps | My Planet Maps | My Challenge Entries | Album: Pre-generated Worlds

    ------
    Assuming I stick with fantasy cartography, I'd like to become a World Builder, laying out not only a realistic topography, but also the geopolitical boundaries and at least rough descriptions of the countries and societies.

  5. #5

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    Hmm - what is the best way to export maps for editing in a program such as GIMP? I would like to add labels to a map I have been playing with all day, and I would also like to add clear borders around the continents - is this possible in GIMP?. Thanks again!
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  6. #6
    Guild Journeyer OldGuy's Avatar
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    I haven't touched overlays yet but I suspect that is the best way to incorporate ice caps. Since terraformer deals heavily with overlays, there might be something in the docs for that addon. If not, the author may have some insights.

  7. #7

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    Yes - the overlays look like they could be effective, look complicated though. My main question now is, which is the best way to save/export maps in order to edit them using GIMP? Also, I remember there was a very good PDF about where to place deserts, rivers, and general map-building, although I have basic ideas I would like to read this again - does anybody have the link (or anything which may be similar)?

  8. #8
    Software Dev/Rep Gracious Donor waldronate's Avatar
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    If your goal is to get pictures out of FT that you never want to work with in FT again (that is, a one-way workflow from FT to other tools), try File>>Save As with an appropriate image type. This technique will save the current FT view to an image file that you can edit or annotate using tools such as the GIMP.

    Contour maps can be exported to CC3 using File>>Save Campaign Cartographer File.

    An easy way to separate the land and sea to allow for applying coastline effects is to modify the altitude shader so that the land is white and sea is black (Map>>Lighting and Color, Altitude page). On the Intensity page, set Shadows to None and you'll have a mask that's white where there is land and black where there's water. This mask can be used in the GIMP to separate the land from the sea.

    In FT3, ice caps appear in the climate shaders. The regular climate shader shows solid colors. The Image Climate shader was updated for FT3 to include an image for land and for sea, allowing ice caps to flow onto sea as well as land. The Textured Climate shader is new for FT3 and allows swatches of textures to be repeated across climate types (works on both land and sea).

  9. #9

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    Thanks Waldronate, very useful information there. By 'contour maps' do you mean maps which show contour lines, or just height in various colours as can be done on FT3 itself? (Sorry if my wording is not very accurate).

    My goal is indeed to get the shape of the world I want in FT3 and simply save it as pictures which I can edit such as adding place names etc - what is the best way to save these images from FT3 in a high resolution? (So far they are quite bad when I zoom in slightly in GIMP or such)

    About the ice caps - my main problem is I want an image with the ice caps and maybe continent extremities, but without having a climate view on the rest of the world (i.e. having altitude view on the rest). I guess I would have to edit this in myself? I cannot seem to get ice to appear from the Image Climate shader, only from the Textured Climate shader...am I missing something?

    Thanks a lot, the help is much appreciated!
    Last edited by davoush; 11-13-2011 at 08:55 PM.

  10. #10
    Software Dev/Rep Gracious Donor waldronate's Avatar
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    Contour maps in this case are vector files that contain contours at different altitudes (or climate or temperature or rainfall). These vector files can be exported with unfilled contours or fillled contours.

    FT3 has a practical export image size around 6000 pixels in a single image. You can, however, zoom in on a few parts of the image and export those images at high resolution, followed by assembling those images in an image manipulation program such as the GIMP. The multi-image export feature in FT allows multiple zoom levels to be output and these can then be assembled into a larger image. The big question I have to ask, though, is "how large an image are you trying to get?"

    If you'd like ice caps (a type of climate) to appear on a non-climate views, then you'll need to do something like exporting a climate view (with ice caps) and your desired non-climate view, then assembling the two images using an image manipulation program like the GIMP.

    To get ice caps on the sea from the Image Climate shader, you need to specify an image for land and sea that have ice caps in the same relative place. If you don't case about sea showing as blue, setting the land and sea images to the same image will get you ice caps that are continuous across land and sea.

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