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Bush's Geotypical Microterrains - Source Files & Beginners Guide

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Bush's Geotypical Microterrains - A Beginners Guide

1st Edition

AfghanMenu.png

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. However, there is a pretty comprehensive "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...

Download

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

Armaholic Mirror - Guide & Source Files Link

Additional Downloads

Bush's GM Heightmap Bonus Pack #1

Full details in this post

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...

Opteryx

OldBear

IceBreakr

Gnat

Planck

Beton

Atsche

Alliexx

Shezan74

Tupolov

Prowler.Wolf

Mondkalb

Mikero

Wolle

JRWalker

Q / Kju / PvPscene

... and all the others I just haven't remembered yet...

B

Edited by Bushlurker

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Thanks Bush Amazing :) :) :)

Edited by kimmo

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Strange ...

i tryed your Tutorial now 2 times . First exactly as you wrote ...retagged everything etc. Works so far in Visitor and looks nice in Buldozer. After Binpbo i got hunderts of errors in the log file and the map dont show up in arma.

second try with Bush\ Tag as they were and P:\Bush\AfghanValley

same thing ... i dont know what to do now :( The P Drive is set up via ARMA2P, without errors etc ... all fine.

and Idea Bush ?

No entry 'X:\BIS TOOLS\BinMake\Binarize\bin\config.cpp/CfgWorlds/AfghanValley.noDetailDist'.
'/' is not a value
No entry 'X:\BIS TOOLS\BinMake\Binarize\bin\config.cpp/CfgWorlds/AfghanValley.fullDetailDist'.
'/' is not a value
Cannot open object ca\plants_e\clutter\c_brush_hard_ep1.p3d
Cannot open object ca\plants_e\clutter\c_brush_soft_ep1.p3d
Cannot open object ca\plants_e\clutter\c_plants_violet_ep1.p3d
Cannot open object ca\plants_e\clutter\c_plants_white_ep1.p3d
Cannot open object ca\plants_e\clutter\c_weed_thistle_ep1.p3d
No entry 'X:\BIS TOOLS\BinMake\Binarize\bin\config.cpp/CfgWorlds/AfghanValley.Rain'.
No entry '.raindrop'.
'/' is not a value
No entry 'X:\BIS TOOLS\BinMake\Binarize\bin\config.cpp/CfgWorlds/AfghanValley.skyObject'.
'/' is not a value
No entry 'X:\BIS TOOLS\BinMake\Binarize\bin\config.cpp/CfgWorlds/AfghanValley.starsObject'.
'/' is not a value
No entry 'X:\BIS TOOLS\BinMake\Binarize\bin\config.cpp/CfgWorlds/AfghanValley.pointObject'.
'/' is not a value
No entry 'X:\BIS TOOLS\BinMake\Binarize\bin\config.cpp/CfgWorlds/AfghanValley.horizontObject'.
'/' is not a value
No entry 'X:\BIS TOOLS\BinMake\Binarize\bin\config.cpp/CfgWorlds/AfghanValley.haloObject'.
'/' is not a value
No entry 'X:\BIS TOOLS\BinMake\Binarize\bin\config.cpp/CfgWorlds/AfghanValley.Weather'.
No entry '.Overcast'.
No entry '.Lighting'.
No weather defined in .Overcast
No lighting defined in .Lighting
No entry '.ThunderboltNorm'.
No entry '.model'.
'/' is not a value
No entry '.soundFar'.
Size: '/' not an array
No entry '.soundNear'.
Size: '/' not an array
No entry '.ThunderboltHeavy'.
No entry '.model'.
'/' is not a value
No entry '.soundFar'.
Size: '/' not an array
No entry '.soundNear'.
Size: '/' not an array
No entry '.temperatureDayMax'.
Size: '/' not an array
Size: '/' not an array
Warning: expected 12 values in the array , but only 0 present
Size: '/' not an array
Size: '/' not an array
Size: '/' not an array
Error: unable to load content of the array 
No entry '.temperatureDayMin'.
Size: '/' not an array
Size: '/' not an array
Warning: expected 12 values in the array , but only 0 present
Size: '/' not an array
Size: '/' not an array
Size: '/' not an array
Error: unable to load content of the array 
No entry '.temperatureNightMax'.
Size: '/' not an array
Size: '/' not an array
Warning: expected 12 values in the array , but only 0 present
Size: '/' not an array
Size: '/' not an array
Size: '/' not an array
Error: unable to load content of the array 
No entry '.temperatureNightMin'.
Size: '/' not an array
Size: '/' not an array
Warning: expected 12 values in the array , but only 0 present
Size: '/' not an array
Size: '/' not an array
Size: '/' not an array
Error: unable to load content of the array 
No entry '.overcastTemperatureFactor'.
'/' is not a value
No entry '.blackSurfaceTemperatureDelta'.
'/' is not a value
No entry '.whiteSurfaceTemperatureDelta'.
'/' is not a value
No entry 'X:\BIS TOOLS\BinMake\Binarize\bin\config.cpp/CfgWorlds/AfghanValley.seaTexture'.
'/' is not a value
No entry 'X:\BIS TOOLS\BinMake\Binarize\bin\config.cpp/CfgWorlds/AfghanValley.Rain'.
No entry '.texture'.
'/' is not a value
No entry 'X:\BIS TOOLS\BinMake\Binarize\bin\config.cpp/CfgWorlds/AfghanValley.seaMaterial'.
'/' is not a value
No entry 'X:\BIS TOOLS\BinMake\Binarize\bin\config.cpp/CfgWorlds/AfghanValley.shoreMaterial'.
'/' is not a value
No entry 'X:\BIS TOOLS\BinMake\Binarize\bin\config.cpp/CfgWorlds/AfghanValley.shoreFoamMaterial'.
'/' is not a value
No entry 'X:\BIS TOOLS\BinMake\Binarize\bin\config.cpp/CfgWorlds/AfghanValley.shoreWetMaterial'.
'/' is not a value
No entry 'X:\BIS TOOLS\BinMake\Binarize\bin\config.cpp/CfgWorlds/AfghanValley.terrainMaterial'.
'/' is not a value
No entry 'X:\BIS TOOLS\BinMake\Binarize\bin\config.cpp/CfgWorlds/AfghanValley.clouds'.
[]: '/' not an array
No entry 'X:\BIS TOOLS\BinMake\Binarize\bin\config.cpp/CfgWorlds/AfghanValley.clouds'.
[]: '/' not an array
No entry 'X:\BIS TOOLS\BinMake\Binarize\bin\config.cpp/CfgWorlds/AfghanValley.clouds'.
[]: '/' not an array
No entry 'X:\BIS TOOLS\BinMake\Binarize\bin\config.cpp/CfgWorlds/AfghanValley.clouds'.
[]: '/' not an array
No entry 'X:\BIS TOOLS\BinMake\Binarize\bin\config.cpp/CfgWorlds/AfghanValley.clutterGrid'.
'/' is not a value
No entry 'X:\BIS TOOLS\BinMake\Binarize\bin\config.cpp/CfgWorlds/AfghanValley.clutterDist'.
'/' is not a value
No entry 'X:\BIS TOOLS\BinMake\Binarize\bin\config.cpp/CfgWorlds/AfghanValley.noDetailDist'.
'/' is not a value
No entry 'X:\BIS TOOLS\BinMake\Binarize\bin\config.cpp/CfgWorlds/AfghanValley.fullDetailDist'.
'/' is not a value
No entry 'X:\BIS TOOLS\BinMake\Binarize\bin\config.cpp/CfgWorlds/AfghanValley.Rain'.
No entry '.raindrop'.
'/' is not a value
No entry 'X:\BIS TOOLS\BinMake\Binarize\bin\config.cpp/CfgWorlds/AfghanValley.skyObject'.
'/' is not a value
No entry 'X:\BIS TOOLS\BinMake\Binarize\bin\config.cpp/CfgWorlds/AfghanValley.starsObject'.
'/' is not a value
No entry 'X:\BIS TOOLS\BinMake\Binarize\bin\config.cpp/CfgWorlds/AfghanValley.pointObject'.
'/' is not a value
No entry 'X:\BIS TOOLS\BinMake\Binarize\bin\config.cpp/CfgWorlds/AfghanValley.horizontObject'.
'/' is not a value
No entry 'X:\BIS TOOLS\BinMake\Binarize\bin\config.cpp/CfgWorlds/AfghanValley.haloObject'.
'/' is not a value
Cannot load material file bush\afghanvalley\data\layers\p_000-000_l01_n.rvmat.
Cannot load material file bush\afghanvalley\data\layers\p_000-000_l01_n.rvmat
Cannot load material file bush\afghanvalley\data\layers\p_000-000_l01_l02.rvmat.
Cannot load material file bush\afghanvalley\data\layers\p_000-000_l01_l02.rvmat
Cannot load material file bush\afghanvalley\data\layers\p_001-000_n_l01_l02.rvmat.
Cannot load material file bush\afghanvalley\data\layers\p_001-000_n_l01_l02.rvmat
Cannot load material file bush\afghanvalley\data\layers\p_001-000_n_n_l02.rvmat.
Cannot load material file bush\afghanvalley\data\layers\p_001-000_n_n_l02.rvmat
Cannot load material file bush\afghanvalley\data\layers\p_001-000_l00_n_l02.rvmat.
Cannot load material file bush\afghanvalley\data\layers\p_001-000_l00_n_l02.rvmat
Cannot load material file bush\afghanvalley\data\layers\p_001-000_l00_l01_l02.rvmat.
Cannot load material file bush\afghanvalley\data\layers\p_001-000_l00_l01_l02.rvmat
Cannot load material file bush\afghanvalley\data\layers\p_002-000_n_l01_l02.rvmat.
Cannot load material file bush\afghanvalley\data\layers\p_002-000_n_l01_l02.rvmat
Cannot load material file bush\afghanvalley\data\layers\p_002-000_n_n_l02.rvmat.
Cannot load material file bush\afghanvalley\data\layers\p_002-000_n_n_l02.rvmat
Cannot load material file bush\afghanvalley\data\layers\p_002-000_l00_n_l02.rvmat.
Cannot load material file bush\afghanvalley\data\layers\p_002-000_l00_n_l02.rvmat
Cannot load material file bush\afghanvalley\data\layers\p_002-000_l00_l01_l02.rvmat.
Cannot load material file bush\afghanvalley\data\layers\p_002-000_l00_l01_l02.rvmat
Cannot load material file bush\afghanvalley\data\layers\p_003-000_n_n_l02.rvmat.
Cannot load material file bush\afghanvalley\data\layers\p_003-000_n_n_l02.rvmat
Cannot load material file bush\afghanvalley\data\layers\p_003-000_l00_n_l02.rvmat.
Cannot load material file bush\afghanvalley\data\layers\p_003-000_l00_n_l02.rvmat
Cannot load material file bush\afghanvalley\data\layers\p_003-000_l00_l01_l02.rvmat.
Cannot load material file bush\afghanvalley\data\layers\p_003-000_l00_l01_l02.rvmat
Cannot load material file bush\afghanvalley\data\layers\p_004-000_n_n_l02.rvmat.

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aaah!

Looks like you're missing all the Arrowhead stuff - do you have Arrowhead installed? or CO?

The terrain itself would probably work OK in Visitor & Buldozer, even with an Arma2-only setup - the config and the Takistan parameters & clutter don't kick in until the binarizing stage - which is where it seems theres a problem....

I made a big thing about the terrains "requiring CO" (mostly), but I forgot entirely about the guide... I'll amend the first post to mention that... my apologies if that's what the problem is...

B

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aaah!

Looks like you're missing all the Arrowhead stuff - do you have Arrowhead installed? or CO?

The terrain itself would probably work OK in Visitor & Buldozer, even with an Arma2-only setup - the config and the Takistan parameters & clutter don't kick in until the binarizing stage - which is where it seems theres a problem....

I made a big thing about the terrains "requiring CO" (mostly), but I forgot entirely about the guide... I'll amend the first post to mention that...

B

Sure i have Arma2 , Arrowhead , BAF and PMC installed ..all working with tons of addons , maps etc ... as CO installed correctly ... strange :eek:

just checked again : Cannot open object ca\plants_e\clutter\c_brush_hard_ep1.p3d

the file is there ! also all other _e Folder from Arrowhead , even the BAF and PMC folders are in CA on P Drive

Edited by EOOQE

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right... there's obviously something fundamentally wrong... probably at the BinPBO stage...

When you imported Sat & Mask layers, was the "Layers" folder created correctly inside the project "Data" folder?

all the "cannot load material file" errors would seem to indicate BinPBO isn't finding what it expects...

All the assorted "weather related" errors are because this terrain "inherits" all that stuff from Takistan, and obviously Takistan isn't being "found" somewhere along the line... most of the other "config related" errors indicate that too...

The fact the island doesn't show up in game at all is wierd... that usually indicates bad paths in BinPbo - check your "Addon source directory" and "path to project folder"... is the "KhargharValley.pbo" actually created?

Try opening it up - see if it has a Layers folder...

B

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Its probably a typo in the config. Missing brackets, ; ?

Maybe , i didnt edit anything in the source file. just opened the .pew file in visitor ..import sat and mask .. let buldozer make his work ... export .wrp

then binpbo ... error ... mhmmm ... i try to redownload the source file and start from scratch .... will see what happen then :cool:

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It's working ok in Visitor, and I'm pretty sure the config is OK, the problem seems to come afterwards... I just tried binarizing the source files - no errors in the log apart from a babble of "updating base class stuff" - none of the errors you're getting.... that would suggest a problem either with the P:\ install or with the BinPBO procedure... doublecheck all those settings for starters I think...

plus... if you're using the "tagfolder" setup - do you have the little "configs only CA" folder in there?... it's made for you as part of the Arma2P process - in the "WRP Projects" folder it creates on P:\ - inside theres a "ca" folder - you need to copy that into your "namespace" or "tag" folder....

B

Edited by Bushlurker

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Ahhha, now everything works !! After re installing the BIN Tools only ... seems BinPbo was broken or something had happened to it .... very strange :eek:

Thanks for all your help !!

And now back to terrain terrain :yay:

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Bush's Geotypical Microterrains - Bonus Heightmap Pack #1

If you've followed this basic Guide right to the end then you should be the proud possessor of your very first properly named and tagged terrain!... pretty cool, except of course - it really is just Afghan Valley under another name...

You could do clever things with it, like flip the heightmap horizontally, or vertically, or both - do the same to the Mask & Sat layers and the whole terrain would look pretty different...

... still kinda cheating though, really.....

If you feel you're ready to take things to the next stage and start creating some stuff on your own, then a ready-made Heightmap might be handy... something different, something unique that hasn't been used on a terrain before.....

Here's a selection of 8 different heightmaps I made recently... I've given them each a name which reflects the sort of terrain I was vaguely thinking about at the time... that doesn't mean you couldn't dress them entirely differently and get an equally good result! Use your imagination!

All terrains are 1024x1024 cells with 5m spacing = 5.1km x 5.1km Final Landscape, though of course you can change that too if you like, though at this size they match the demo microterrain files perfectly...

They're all basically variations on the small valleys/hills theme, with varying types of erosion.. lots of small scale detail and variations which show well on the 5m terrain grid...

Don't be fooled by the screenshots scale - 5km across looks pretty big in-game, and those hills are a lot higher than you'd think... but still room enough to create a good few small settlements and points of interest around the place...

Make Mask and Sat layers, decide on some Ground Texture Sets, add your own Clutter Mix - and you really DO have a unique terrain of your own...

I've listed default Altitude Ranges below each - this gives you an idea of the "tallest hill on the map" basically, though remember - you can scale heights easily - just change the max & min values in the .pbl file... Scaling those 300m+ "afghan mountains" to 80m small hills might produce a completely different "rolling english countryside" effect, for example...

Afghan 01

Afghan01.jpg

Altitude Range = 250.98m

Afghan 02

Afghan02.jpg

Altitude Range = 314.67m

Afghan 03

Afghan03.jpg

Altitude Range = 318.09m

Desert or Snow?

DesertOrSnow.jpg

Incise & Flow

InciseFlow.jpg

Altitude Range = 302.38m

Snakeback Ridge

SnakebackRidge.jpg

Altitude Range = 535.97m

Snow or Moorland? 01

SnowOrMoorland01.jpg

Altitude Range = 175.55m

Snow or Moorland? 02

SnowOrMoorland02.jpg

Altitude Range = 205.06m

All terrains are supplied in 16bit Greyscale .png format with matching .pbl file

Download

Bush's GM Heightmaps Pack #1

Have fun!...

B

Edited by Bushlurker

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I followed the http://forums.bistudio.com/showthread.php?t=124623 tutorial and it says: Arma2P made you one of these as well! - isn't it clever?... Look on your P:\ drive and you'll see a folder which Arma2P created called "WRP_PROJECTS" - inside there is a "ca" folder... this is your ready-made "little configs-only" ca folder!.

But I can't find it anywere, FPDR.

Anyone have a suggestion????

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Hi again....

The "WRP_PROJECTS folder should be created on your root P:\ directory... if it isn't there, its a clear indication that the Arma2P setup procedure didn't complete properly... making that folder is the last thing it does before finishing with a "press any key to continue"...

It shows all of this happening in it's DOS window as it works.... did you get a "press any key..." at the end?

Arma2P uses a lot of "page memory" and it can be a little qwirky occasionally... it's unpacking a LOT of stuff... one .pbo in particular - "dubbing.pbo" is notorious for causing the occasional "out of memory error"... thats the most common problem usually - but it should say so in it's window when it fails - or if it successfully completes, you do get a "I'm done! press a key to continue" message...

I'd suggest you try running Arma2P again....

Do a nice clean fresh reboot of your machine, then run Arma2P again with no other programs running... give it plenty of time... you should get ongoing reports in the DOS window.... sometimes it may look as if it's stopped or crashed - it's likely it's just busy - give it a bit more time...

It's quite a smart little util... it'll clear out all trace of it's previous attempt - but leave any and all usermade stuff on P:\ intact, so its safe to run it several times until it works...

No harm in making a backup of any user stuff first tho I suppose...

So - it sounds like Arma2P hasn't completed... run it again and see how it goes

Let us know how you get on!

good luck

B

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I run ArmaP2 three times and it ends three times with "cannot write".

then pushed a key and then it says "press any key..." .

HELP!!!

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just make sure you have the latest arma2p (2.5.1a) from dev-heaven

http://www.dev-heaven.net/projects/mikero-pbodll/files

---------- Post added at 08:50 PM ---------- Previous post was at 08:41 PM ----------

I run ArmaP2 three times and it ends three times with "cannot write".

then pushed a key and then it says "press any key..." .

HELP!!!

more details please. cannot write what? it would be showing the file it's working on at that point

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I'm very keen to help you, and resolve the problem. the 'cannot write' is in context to a screenful of dos console data, the last pbo it was working on would be mentioned prior to 'cannot write'.

just post a screen image here

Also, if you're on Win7 (or vista), it's buggy as hell with it's file system. Practically *everything* is 'read only'. Windows tech support say they 'ignore the read only bit'. In truth, they don't for any disk other than c:\

If that's your problem, you need to fully disable UAC until windoze get's it's act together.

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UAC! I would never have thought of that! - definitely disable that if it's switched on...

According to your screenshot, Arma2P was working on "Takistan/Data/Layers" when it hit a problem... that's a big folder - 18,625 files... not the biggest by any means though...

Now that Mikero's mentioned it, I'd guess at something like UAC too... maybe try that and run Arma2P again...?

B

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UAC! I would never have thought of that! - definitely disable that if it's switched on...

According to your screenshot, Arma2P was working on "Takistan/Data/Layers" when it hit a problem... that's a big folder - 18,625 files... not the biggest by any means though...

Now that Mikero's mentioned it, I'd guess at something like UAC too... maybe try that and run Arma2P again...?

B

Disabled UAC, Arma2P runs now for 4 hours, almost done

(fingers crossed:notworthy:)

Edited by GodsFist

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