Hello, I'm embarking on a project to make a bunch of buildings for battlemaps and I'm trying to figure out ways to smooth my workflow. What I'm after right now is a half-convincing way to represent multiple levels within a building. I use illustrator for initial shapes (and recently to do the stairs) and then add textures and shadows in photoshop.

What I'm struggling with is a quick and reliable standard operation that I can do on each "floor" to demonstrate that it is above the one below. Here is an example:
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I've been using a drop shadow with a distance of '0' which is okay, but falls apart when two elevation levels intersect. I've also been playing around with using the 'stroke' layer effect and a gradient overlay, which seems promising. My main problem is I'm looking to do a large number of buildings so I need to standardize my moves.
I guess what I'm looking for is ways that the cartographers here do their elevation levels for battle map-scale. Any ideas or advice is greatly appreciated!

cheers,
Meshon