Looks good, the runes & pentagram seem to float above the surface, but I'm not sure how to fix that.
Hmm maybe I need to turn up the shadow on the outer bevel I have set. Thanks for the additional eyes!
OK here's a random arrangement of the tiles from my demonic wastelands, the majority of the tiles are shown:
madcowchef your maps are amazing.
Please tell me, how do you make these awesome walls? is there a tutorial somewhere I can read?
Lots of the bevel tool applied in different ways and some cheesy layer effects. I use Photoshop so I can't say how much this applies to other programs. I should write something with more pictury examples to make everything easier to follow, but for now:
1. Lay down the basic texture for the rock and put an inner bevel on it only a couple pixels wide. Set highlights to overlay unless you are working with a shinier material.
2. Add the texture option to the bevel, any grainy stone will do, and adjust the depth of the texture so it isn't too overpowering but the stone looks like it has highlights and shadows to it (depending on texture anywhere from 10-80%).
3. New layer with a bunch of radial lines (you'll have to draw these or use the ones below) linked to the one below by making it a clipping mask. Apply an outer bevel several pixels wide, again with highlights on overlay. For a flat wall you can use a grid instead of radial lines.
4. Add the texture option to that bevel too, the one you used before, or an even rougher one with some cracks, again fiddle with depth till it looks good. You should now have a ring wall made of rough bricks. that will do for a building in good repair. but moving onward to more damage.
5. New layer render some black and white clouds, then render some difference clouds over that. Set layer to either overlay or hard-light and adjust opacity (I like around 60% depending on the darkness of the lighting). Make this layer a clipping mask to the first stone layer and then hide the whole thing with a layer mask. Add a drop shadow set to 0 distance and maybe a few pixels wide.
6. Now take a brush with an uneven edge and edit the layer mask, anywhere you draw over the wall you'll get sections of "broken" looking stone.
7. Use the same rough brush to take chunks out of the wall here and there.
8. Add a drop shadow to your stone layer(or better yet just draw your own on a separate layer).
9. Add a outer glow to your stone layer, set blend mode to multiply, and make the color black (this works better than drop shadow as you can make it either "soft" or "precise" which will look better for different projects). Set it to just a few pixels and lower the opacity down to 60-20% depending on what looks good.
10. Fiddle with all the opacity settings for the bevels to the light and dark balance is good.
Some icy stuff for your northern needs. This is all of the winter set I've done, they were so close to fitting right when I laid them out at random I fiddled with them till they actually fit together without any inappropriate edge matches. Next up I'm going to do some fortification tiles as they are a common place to have encounters.
These are tremendous. Thank you so much for sharing this. I'm really enjoying examining your tiles in minute detail for ideas on how I can get better at drawing. A generous contribution to the community, huzzah!
A little late to the party on this one, but I have some comments on the elven tree tile.
The cloud background doesn't make sense unless the tree is literally taller than the clouds.
The black background is distracting in its emptiness. Too much of a yawning chasm. What is the tree rooted in?
The grass texture makes the most sense from a naturalistic point of view, but it suffers from several problems:
1) it's almost the same color as the leaves;
2) it almost the same texture as the leaves;
3) the details of the leaves and the grass are equally sharp, despite different distances from the point of view.
That makes it hard to distinguish where the leaves stop and the grass begins. It also undermines the sense of depth.
I think you may need a different ground texture. Perhaps some leaf litter, with a blur and possibly some darkening on it?
Here's a very quick example:
This is just using a VERY quick mask of your sample image, so the edges are rough.
I added a leaf litter texture (this one from CGTextures). In the bottom right third, it's just as-is. In the bottom left third, it's got a 2px gaussian blur applied to the leaf litter. In the top third, it's got both the blur and a bit of darkening.
Something like that might work. I think adding a bit of blur to the textures that are further away helps a good bit with adding a sense of height in a map like this.
Though obviously if you were doing it for real you'd need to do a good bit more to it. I totally ignored shadows, for instance, and you'd want to do something to break up the leaf litter so that the repeating pattern isn't so obvious.
EDIT: And on further consideration, the leaf litter I chose is too brown. It blends too well with the bark. The ground really needs a texture which is visually distinct from both the leaves AND the bark. Something with a good bit of variation to it. Maybe the leaves have an orange or red cast to them? Or at least a lighter tan instead of brown.
Last edited by wdmartin; 04-25-2014 at 03:34 PM.
Great suggestions, they give me some ideas. Perhaps the problem is the leaf and bark colors. I could go for a more black/silver bark it would probably be more accurate than the browner tones anyhow, and the blue green balance of the leaves is also up for some contrast with a brown/yellow green background. Part of the problem is I envisioned that several of these might exist in a stack to represent a multistory house, so the background on all but the first layer where the ground is still visible (and there is an entry) should realistically be more treetops, but I'm going to need that to be blurred and darkened to indicate that its below the current layer. This is easily the most problematic of the set so far, and I am torn between the fact that its a less common setting and its an interesting setting that sees fewer mapping attempts.
It's certainly a tough project. But I think it's well worth it. Tree-cities are not exactly uncommon in fantasy and SF gaming. They positively drip flavor. And as you're finding out, they're a pain to map. Having a nicely designed set of tiles would be a really excellent contribution.
Originally Posted by madcowchef
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