Author: Nicholas Bell
Author Website:

Requirements: No addons required

Version: 1.0
Signed: Yes, key included

Short description:

Date: 2008-06-27 19:18


Comments: (1)
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4-news_schmalfelden_1.jpg 4-news_schmalfelden_11.jpg 4-news_schmalfelden_13.jpg 4-news_schmalfelden_15.jpg 4-news_schmalfelden_18.jpg 4-news_schmalfelden_3.jpg 4-news_schmalfelden_6.jpg
Pictures by MrCash2009

Schmalfelden - no undergrowth
by
Nicholas Bell


Description:
Schmalfelden - no undergrowth at forest edge or inside forests. Provides the best FPS.

Schmalfelden is a map based on actual terrain in Germany, created using a military 1:50,000 scale topographic map and a Google Earth image of the area. I selected this area for recreating realistic engagements in a European environment which might typically described as "good tank country", terrain which Soviet Forces would have sought to exploit with their tank and mechanized infantry forces had the Cold War ever gone "hot". Another reason I selected this area was because unlike most of Germany, the farming communities in this area are very small - most towns usually are at least a square kilometer or two. Hopefully the small size of the built up areas will help the ArmA AI.

Although the ground may appear to be flat (especially from the air) there are actually differences in elevation across the area of 50 meters. Making use of the valleys and draws are critical in your tactical maneuvering.

The map is also well suited for use in WW2 European scenarios. I also find quite a bit of fun to ride around on a motorcycle and explore the roads and trails and take in the sights from odd corners of the map. Flying NOE in a helicopter is also entertaining in itself.


Installation:
Extract the pbo file to your ArmA's Addons file or (as we always recommend) use mod folders to keep your mods organized and to prevent errors in the future.
Check our FAQ for a clear explanation.

***Use only one version of this map!! If all are installed, ArmA will load the Plain Version. (I have to figure out this problem)***



Included .pbo files:
schmalfelden.pbo


Media:

Video by wolfbiscuits:


Known issues:
1. These maps have a high object density and require a good system for high FPS. How many objects are in the players line of sight is the main factor impacting frame rate. Obvious solutions to help improve FPS are reducing the Visibility Range and other Graphics options, increasing the fog in your mission setup (not unrealistic for Germany) or fighting at night. A less obvious help is setting up missions so the players primary direction of focus is toward the center of the map where there are fewer forests. Keeping the forests on the west and northwest side at your back as much as possible is a good idea.

2. This is a 5120 meter x 5120 meter map, not an island - no water around it. Apart from the small size some may not be happy with, this introduces oddities on the right and lower edge of the playing area, where the overlap of satellite image segments overlaps the actual image. In effect you lose proper terrain image for some 250 meters on the right and bottom edge. Not particularly noticeable on foot, but definitely noticeable when flying. I use these areas as setup areas for AI controlled forces to enter the scenario. Additionally, the ArmA program uses the lower left satellite image segment to cover the area outside of the map playing area.

3. No airfield.

5. The ArmA restriction of 4 textures per map segment (I have 7 total textures on the map) has required some texture fudging where there are too many texture types in close proximity. Therefore you will find some forest floors with grass instead of leaves and ferns. There are also some areas where there is light colored grass instead of preferred darker green grass.

Within the constraints of the game engine, I have attempted to make this map as realistic as possible. Here are some exceptions and other comments:

1. Buildings.
ArmA buildings are in general smaller than the real world buildings. I've done the best I could to determine the
general type of structures, and the close clutter of the structures is realistic. For those not familiar with
Germany, barns and other "out buildings" are usually all "in town" right next to the owners house - sometimes attached. Animals, manure piles and associated odors too!

The hangar buildings represent the common pre-engineered steel "barns" which are quite evident in the Google image.

The church in Schmalfelden is much larger than the actual church which I found a photo of, but it is more correct in architecture. An Eastern or Spanish style just didn't look right although the size would be more accurate.

I've used some artistic license in Schmalfelden and Speckheim to make them a bit more interesting.

2. Vegetation.
The forests in the area contain what might be called "lumber nurseries" where trees are harvested for lumber and the area then replanted with trees in dense rows. Different species of trees and areas with different age trees are evident in the Google image. While possible to recreate the dress-right-dress" rows of trees, doing so adds even more tree objects than are already on the map. I opted for a random placement which restricts line of sight without using as many tree objects. Tree and bush placement outside the forests is generally accurate because of the high resolution Google image used. You'll see single trees standing in the middle of a wheat fields. They are there because they are really there.

3. Roads
Most German farm field paths and many forest trails are actually paved with light duty asphalt. I thought it a bit "much" to do all the roads in asphalt and have down-graded many of these to gravel or dirt tracks.

4. Interesting Note
The quarry is know for it's excellent plesiosaur fossils. The area also has a lot of caves.


Version:
v1.0
- Hundreds of minor fixes and improvements to object placement, satellite image and terrain mask.
- Major noticeable changes:
1. Terrain speed modifiers fixed so vehicles will not speed across farm fields.
2. Satellite map resegmented from 512 pixels squares to 256 pixels squares. This increases the playing area of the map on the east
and south edge. It also allows for improvement in terrain mask. For example, there are areas the true meadow terrain now.
3. All versions can be placed in your addon folders and appear as seperate maps in the editor.
4. Signature keys included with each PBO.
5. Time to complete: 19 January 2008 to 27 June 2008. Approximately 340 hours.

v0.94
- Satellite image improvements.
- Continued work correcting minor problems.

v0.91
- Ladders and doors now work. Thanks to Fitzee on the BIS forums for his help solving my problems with this.
- Fixed a mask conflict at the quarry entrance.

v0.9
- Reduction of tree quantity in all forests now complete - a major task. Frame rates should show improvement.
- Added additional fields with hay rolls.
- Added brush to numerous locations along roads, lanes, and between fields. This consists of krovi_long bush type sunk 1.5 meters below the surface. When used in combination with Durg's Vegetation Fix, these low bushes provide concealment when the player is prone.
- Eliminated incorrectly located road reflector posts in towns and farm roads.
- Further improvements in roads and intersections. The road smoothing script doesn't seem to be going the best job for some reason, and many roads remain somewhat bumpy.
- More improvements in the satellite image, toning down the bright fields.
- I continue to find floating or sunk buildings which I am fixing. Some I swear I have already addressed. Either my memory is bonkers (probable) or Visitor has gremlins (possible).
- Odds and ends you probably won't notice.

v0.82
- Further improvements on satellite map.
- Eliminated another 30,000 trees. Frame rate continues to improve.
- Fixed several more ugly intersections.
- Objects added: Additional road reflector posts, street lights in a few towns so far, miscellaneous objects.
- More building height problems addressed.
- Longitude/Latitude changed to make it compatible with BAS f (this change is not included in the readme file but the change is the in PBO).

v0.81
- Desaturated greens on satellite map and eliminated some of the whitest farm fields. I believe these white fields are ripe oats. The tan/brown fields are wheat.
- Toned down the brightness of the quarry and the gravel pit.
- Decreased the number of trees by 25,000 in the 2 woods in the center of the map and large portions (but not all) of the forests in the northwest corner. I have experienced improved frame rate. I plan to continue to thin out the forests.
- Modifications to road network.
- Cleaned up some road intersections. I am aware of others than need work.
- Added road reflector posts on some of the roads. Unfortunately they are backwards from the actual German posts. Not much I can do about this.
- Corrected building heights which where above or below grade (ie "floating" or "sunk")
- Plus other miscellaneous corrections and improvements.

v0.80
- first beta release


Thanks:
I could not have created this without the shared wisdom, help and encouragement from people like Opteryx, Planck, Linker Split, Phaeden, Edge, Allie and many other good souls in the BIS Map Editing Forum.


Legal disclaimer:
Permission is granted for personal, military or educational use with Armed Assault or VBS2. Any commercial use is strictly forbidden by BIS end user license agreement. Permission is granted to distribute this software as long as it is 100% free of charge and this readme file is distributed with it. I assume no responsibility for any damages this program may cause - use at your own risk. If your video card overheats or your computer blows up you're on your own.


Forum topic:
- Armaholic forums
- BI forums




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