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Thread: Creating and using seamless texture sets

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      RobA is offline
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    Tutorial Creating and using seamless texture sets

    There has been a fair number of posts on creating seamless textures for use in maps, the largest one here.

    Extending on that topic, here is a technique to create seamless texture sets, or multiple tiles that are all seamless with one another. I first read about the technique in the dundjinni forums, as that program supports tile randomization.

    The original site is not available: http://www.vsf.cape.com/~jdale/dundjinni/tut_tiles.htm

    but there is still a cache in the wayback machine: http://web.archive.org/web/200701082.../tut_tiles.htm

    As I don't know how long that will be available, I will walk through the process here.

    The Tutorial

    I am starting with an image from CGTextures that I have scaled down:
    Creating and using seamless texture sets-2008-10-22_124446.jpg

    I want 200x200 px tiles so I set the rectangular selection to be fixed 200x200:
    Creating and using seamless texture sets-2008-10-22_124524.jpg

    And copy and paste a selection to a new image:
    Creating and using seamless texture sets-2008-10-22_124748.jpg

    Which is made seamless using your preferred technique:
    Creating and using seamless texture sets-2008-10-22_124851.jpg

    This will be the base image that all other tiles will be made from. Duplicate the layer and make a squiggly feathered selection in the middle:
    Creating and using seamless texture sets-2008-10-22_124950.jpg

    Then...

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    ...and delete the selection:
    Creating and using seamless texture sets-2008-10-22_125026.jpg

    Now keep selecting 200x200px areas from different places in the source image, copy and paste them into new layers. Here I have the initial plus five pasted layers, plus the seamless "frame" we had cut the middle from:
    Creating and using seamless texture sets-2008-10-22_125608.jpg

    Now reveal one layer at a time through the frame and save the image as a separate png. Because the frame is seamless, and tileable, each one of these will also be seamlessly tilable. Here is a zip of the 6 tiles:
    autumn_leaves.zip

    ...

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    ...Like I said, some programs (dundjinni, mapx, dungeonforge) support random tiles automatically, but Gimp doesn't...

    The base seamless tiles would look like this:
    Creating and using seamless texture sets-seamless_1.jpg

    Setting the grid to 200px, and turning on snap to grid, I create a new layer and drag in copies of the other tiles, snapping them to the grid:
    Creating and using seamless texture sets-2008-10-22_130309.jpg

    So when you look at the whole thing you get less periodicity:
    Creating and using seamless texture sets-seamless_2.jpg

    One last thing that can be done is to add a B&W overlay. Here I added a gradient to shade the image a bit. This fools the brain and makes the texture look less periodic:
    Creating and using seamless texture sets-seamless_with-overlay.jpg

    One last note. I showed the cutting out a feathered frame, and using the same frame for all of the tiles. A better method (that I figured out after doing this) would be to use layer masks to randomly mask the outer edges from each of the dragged in copies to expose the seamless tile below. This would give more control to eliminate small inconsistencies or details that would show up periodically, in a non-destructive manner.

    -Rob A>

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      xv43 is offline
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    Brilliant! I'm definitely going to have some use for this.

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    Very useful information! Thanks much!

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      Karro is offline
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    Stupid question:

    What do you do in the early part where you indicate to "make seamless using your preferred technique"? Is there a specific command that turns an image into something tileable? Or a specific set of commands?
    I think, therefore I am a nerd.
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      Redrobes is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by Karro View Post
    Is there a specific command that turns an image into something tileable? Or a specific set of commands?
    Oh yes, you use Gimp with the patent pending 'Redrobes' filter

    Or the link rob gave goes to a thread with a script implementation of it which does the same thing using ImageMagick which is a free image scripting language thingy.

    There are other ones too tho but they arent called anything as good as Robs script...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Karro View Post
    Stupid question:

    What do you do in the early part where you indicate to "make seamless using your preferred technique"? Is there a specific command that turns an image into something tileable? Or a specific set of commands?
    Even stock gimp has a (poor quality) command Map->Make Seamless.

    But if you google for "seamless tile tutorial" you get tens of thousands of hits.

    There are also loads of dedicated programs just for creating seamless textures, but again, YMMV.

    -Rob A>

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      Karro is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by RobA View Post
    Even stock gimp has a (poor quality) command Map->Make Seamless.

    But if you google for "seamless tile tutorial" you get tens of thousands of hits.

    There are also loads of dedicated programs just for creating seamless textures, but again, YMMV.

    -Rob A>
    Thanks, plus I found the one Redrobes referred to in the post above.

    Now... maybe a more complex question (or maybe just more stupid):

    Firstly, what's the maximum size of an image like this?

    Secondly, is it possible to make, say, only the top and bottom tileable, so that you can tile a column, vertically, but it won't tile horizontally...?
    I think, therefore I am a nerd.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Karro View Post
    Firstly, what's the maximum size of an image like this?
    Any size really. Most time based software uses a predefined size (like Dundjinni's 200x200 px) but if you are using a paint program, then any size.

    Secondly, is it possible to make, say, only the top and bottom tileable, so that you can tile a column, vertically, but it won't tile horizontally...?
    Now it is my turn to ask what might be considered a stupid question...

    Why would you want to NOT tile both ways?

    -Rob A>

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