The blog has been quiet, but I have been busy lately. Aside from work on the BlakOpal site, there has been a fair amount of mad science. I’ve also been working on a new tutorial or two to join the ranks of How To Send A Gift, How To Change Gender, Using Substances, and others. I wanted to take a minute to show you a Tropical Enclave work in progress teaser.
This project has been pushing along for a little while. I’ve been tinkering with my Tropical Enclave here and there during breaks and down time in other projects.
Procedural Meets Painterly
After beginning with a couple rough sketches, I dove into MapMagic to work on creating a natural terrain that I liked. While that excellent tool can be used for everything from creating and texturing the terrain to placing trees and other objects, I only wanted to use it for the basic terrain shape. For everything else, I wanted to take a more painterly approach.
After getting it to a place that I liked, I exported my finished heightmap and used that to create a Unity terrain. Next is what I call the 30,000 foot view. paint in very large broad strokes to block out the basic textures (which bits are sandy, which bits are rocky, etc). I added a couple large white tiles where I want to have parcels.
Things are coming along nicely, and now it’s time to come down from the 30,000 foot view and come in a little closer. After toggling off the water, I spent time working on the underwater contours, adding rocks and barnacles.
With the smaller islands I can dive right into a closer view, but on the larger islands I typically go through with a few passes as I fine tune the terrain textures as well as the terrain shader settings. Unity’s standard terrain shader is alright, but with tools like CTS I can get much better looking results.
I hope you’ve enjoyed my Tropical Enclave work in progress teaser. I still have a lot of work to do, but thought I would share this little glimpse of where things are at.