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Thread: Cloudhaven, flying prison (Photoshop)

  1. #1

    Wip Cloudhaven, flying prison (Photoshop)

    One of the many things I loved about Battle Chasers was the flying prison. So I put one into my campaign as well. And this Wednesday, one of the players is going to try to spring an imprisoned demon king......

    I've mapped out the whole prison a loong time ago, but today I foolishly decided to try to make a digital version, which would hopefully be done before Wednesday....fat chance.....as usual, I managed to start something which will take an age to finish.

    I'm not sure how it happened, but I was aiming for a a slight modification of my hand drawn and scanned map, and ended up with this:

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	Cloudhaven level 1 WIP bitteliten fil.jpg 
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ID:	10631

    This is the entrance level of the prison. There are several other levels further down.

    For comparison, here is how parts of it looks like originally (1 square=10 feet):

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	Scan10001.JPG 
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ID:	10632

    I'm really in deep water here, and I fear I might not be able to complete the map at all in the present style. But still, I like how it looks - i just can't fathom what's going to happen when I have to add statues and furnitures and guards and staircases etc...I'm used to sketching these things with a pencil!

    Anyway, I'll toss it up here so that I'll feel some kind of obligation to work more on it, even though I'm going to have to settle for the hand drawn maps next gaming session.

  2. #2
    Community Leader jfrazierjr's Avatar
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    Cool... Of course, if you want some more time, you could always throw up a delay tactic. Not sure where they are at the moment, but you could always put in some guards on the outside and and enough encounters to keep them from getting inside. Or better yet, have the guards totally trounce them and have them wake up in a room, alive, but with little to no equipment.

    Anything to delay another session might help...
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  3. #3
    Guild Journeyer woekan's Avatar
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    Cool idea, nice layout

  4. #4

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    Yes, stalling would be nice. However, the player in question is playing a solo session, so it's gotta be efficient and (hopefully) successful. But today, I made a great discovery!

    You can draw straight lines (!) in Photoshop! (/facepalm)
    Up until now, I've been using the rectangular marquee tool to make objects and cut'n paste to make corners and rotate to make angled lines etc. etc.....oh, my....well, at least now I know better

    So I drew some more walls today, and added some stairs (I don't like stairs, they're difficult) and doors:

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	cloudhaven level 1 WIP 02 bitteliten.jpg 
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Size:	1.98 MB 
ID:	10648

    Hmmm...what's next? More objects, I guess...

  5. #5
    Guild Member Nytmare's Avatar
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    Forgive me if this goes too fast or makes too many jumps. I'll explain bits in more depth if you want them.

    How Nytmare Makes Walls in Photoshop

    • Through all of this, the only thing that matters is that your walls are black and your floors are white. Don't bother trying to keep this process transparent, because we cheat later on and only focus on where the black parts are.
    • Start on a fresh layer.
    • Make all the straight walls and freeform walls with either the line tool (U) or the paintbrush, both with a size of 1 pixel. (You can also make straight sections with tools like the brush with a combination of View > Snap or just by holding down the shift key while you paint.)
    • If these wall sections intersect where a round wall sections will be, just overlap it and worry about cleaning it up later.
    • Edit > Stroke the selection to the appropriate width. At 200 to 300 dpi I usually have my walls end up being about 10 to 20 pixels thick, depending on what they're supposed to be.
    • Select the negative space and fill in with the bucket tool. Sometimes you need to do the negative space on a new layer so that you don't get a blank space between the outside wall and fill behind it.
    • On a new layer(s), layout the round rooms with a combination of the round marquee tool, Select > Modify > Contract (to the appropriate wall width) and the paint bucket.
    • Paint the overlapping bits white where the round parts and straight parts don't jive. (ie where a straight hallway turns into a round room)
    • Right about now you should be looking at a rough sketch of only walls.
    • At this point, again depending on what kind of walls I'm making, I might squish all of these layers into one layer with a white background and do a Filter > Pixelate > Crystalize at about 7 to 10 pixels to roughen them up and make them look rocky.
    • Go to the Channels window. It should be the middle tab on the Layers window. If it's not there go to Windows > Channel and it will pop up.
    • Hold the Cntrl key and click on the RGB layer. This will select everything that has red, green, or blue in it which is currently everything that is NOT black.
    • Go back to the Layers tab and make a new layer.
    • Select the inverse of what you're currently selecting either with Cntrl-Shift-I or by Select > Inverse
    • Paint bucket the heck out of it. Now you have all of the walls as a separate element on their very own own layer and you can decorate them however you like.


    I know that it's cheating cause I'm used to the process, but as an experiment, I'm going to try to recreate your map to see about how long it takes me. It's currently 5:02 PM...and just shy of 45 minutes later, I have this:
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

Name:	newwalls.jpg 
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  6. #6
    Community Leader jfrazierjr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nytmare View Post
    Forgive me if this goes too fast or makes too many jumps. I'll explain bits in more depth if you want them.

    How Nytmare Makes Walls in Photoshop

    • Through all of this, the only thing that matters is that your walls are black and your floors are white. Don't bother trying to keep this process transparent, because we cheat later on and only focus on where the black parts are.
    heh... for use GIMPers, if I you got white floors and black walls for the outline, it takes RobA's Dungeon map prettier script about 3 seconds, of course, thats even more cheating...... You still have to manually put in the stair and door icons, but that should take about 2 minutes or so.
    My Finished Maps
    Works in Progress(or abandoned tests)
    My Tutorials:
    Explanation of Layer Masks in GIMP
    How to create ISO Mountains in GIMP/PS using the Smudge tool
    ----------------------------------------------------------
    Unless otherwise stated by me in the post, all work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 3.0 United States License.

  7. #7
    Guild Member Nytmare's Avatar
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    The 45 minutes was spent making the black walls and white floors. I was trying to give him a process that I was assuming he spent at least a couple of hours on if not more.

  8. #8
    Community Leader jfrazierjr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nytmare View Post
    The 45 minutes was spent making the black walls and white floors. I was trying to give him a process that I was assuming he spent at least a couple of hours on if not more.

    Oh.. duh.. yea... just making the b/w outlines takes a bit of time by itself.
    My Finished Maps
    Works in Progress(or abandoned tests)
    My Tutorials:
    Explanation of Layer Masks in GIMP
    How to create ISO Mountains in GIMP/PS using the Smudge tool
    ----------------------------------------------------------
    Unless otherwise stated by me in the post, all work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 3.0 United States License.

  9. #9

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    Thanks for the advice

    Now, if I only knew how to instantly transform my scanned maps into clean black'n white images.....whenever I scan a pencil drawing, all I get is...well...grey pencil strokes, a not so grey paper background (but certainly nowhere near white) and a lot of grids.

    And even when I start digitalizing the drawing, I end up making a whole new map/drawing from skratch because I can't incorporate the original, scanned drawing satisfyingly

  10. #10
    Community Leader Facebook Connected Steel General's Avatar
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    Maybe try going over your pencil lines with a fine black marker before scanning? Its a bunch of extra work, but should help with the scan.
    My Finished Maps | My Challenge Maps | Ghoraja Juun, my largely stagnated campaign setting.

    Unless otherwise stated by me in the post, all work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 3.0 United States License.



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