Author: Bushlurker
Author Website:

Version: 1st Edition

Short description: Here's the first of my "microterrain" Source File packages, plus a fairly detailed Beginners Guide... (42 page/18,000 word pdf file with clickable main index).

Date: 2011-09-05 12:54

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Bush's Geotypical Microterrains - A Beginners Guide - 1st Edition


Finally, as promised quite some time ago :o , here's the first of my "microterrain" Source File packages, plus a fairly detailed Beginners Guide... (42 page/18,000 word pdf file with clickable main index).

This guide is primarily designed to accompany the Bush's Geotypical Microterrains series of source files packages. As such, it's not really a complete, from-scratch, teach-you-everything-you'll-ever-need-to-know-about-terrainmaking tutorial. There is a "beginners" section which, after some initial install and setup instructions, directs you to Sgt Ace's Tutorial - thereafter, the rest of this guide is more like a mechanics manual - the simple mechanics of getting basic terrain structures working and in-game are discussed in some detail... the files you need, what they are, what they do and where to put them.

After an introductory setup section for beginners, the main part of this guide takes the form of a walkthrough of the Afghan Valley - Ghor Province example terrain source files. As we consider each folder and file, there's instructions on repathing and renaming each of the example files into your own "Namespace" or "Tag Folder", including renaming the terrain itself. By the end of the guide, the reader should have a complete and working renamed version of Afghan Valley... your terrain now, and your working structure! You can use that as a basis for your own project - adding your own enhancements to that basic framework, or use the whole folder structure as a project template.

Some of those enhancements will be illustrated by subsequent terrains in the series - with "advanced-level" appendices added to the end of the guide. Etah Plateau, for example, will include custom "terrainHit" sounds (footsteps to you and me), and appropriate discussion of the extra files and steps involved will be added to the guide. The Faffindale source files pack will contain its associated WorldTools project file, so there'll be some brief matching discussion of basic forest masks and importing vegetation, etc.

What's not discussed much, if at all, is any of the truly creative stuff, like sculpting heightmaps, or painting Satellite or Mask files. Nor will I be covering roads, or placing buildings and objects, etc. When you get to that creative stage there's a wide variety of options - real or artificial heightmaps? satellite or hand-painted satmaps? Regardless of how you choose to actually make these parts of your terrain project, the final result will depend on one common factor - getting them into Visitor in a coherent structure it expects, then getting that terrain through binarization and into the game. This guide will focus on that basic, practical procedure at a very simple "entry" level.

I'll release subsequent terrain source files packages plus a matching updated version of the guide as and when my other commitments allow...

Afghan Valley Source Files v02:
Download the Afghan Valley Source Files from here or here

Ready to use heightmaps:
Bushlurker made some heightmaps to use with the map you created following this tutorial as a next step, you can download those from the Bush's Geotypical Microterrains - Bonus Heightmap Pack #1 downloadpage.

Credits & thanks:
Many people have contributed directly and indirectly to this guide - from the Old Pros who answered my own dumb beginners questions back when I was starting out, to more recent and direct contributions, in the form of custom parameters, files and scripts contributed specifically for this series... Without your early encouragement and ongoing support I'd have missed out on all the truly unique and creative fun that making your own World from scratch can be!

Gentlemen... I thank you all...
Q / Kju / PvPscene
... and all the others I just haven't remembered yet

Forum topic:
- BI forums

- Arma 2 (for the Afghan Valley Source Files only!)

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