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Guest ansons2

Some Hints to texture a Map, add trees and objects

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Guest ansons2



Do you want to enjoy terrain building ? As I have got a bit experience with the TE, let me share with you some hints :


When working with the TE

1) As already said, save your file very often (Ctrl S) as there is no rollback function

2) Make regular backups of the most important files :

- xxx.hfd

- xxx.tfd

- xxx texture set .ini

- xxx_data.ini


creating a small command file is useful for that. you have one example in my latest india terrain


2) Use autotexturing as most as possible before moving to manual tiling. I have found that the order of the texture types

has a strong impact on the way the TE will distribute them on the Map. It is not only the altitude range defined per type

and the priority that have an impact but also the order of the types. For each terrain I had to make trials to find the good order. Once you have found the good order, create the transition tiles.


3) Use the city list to create the cities and airfield locations, that way each time you use the autotexturing you will have

your cities created on the map. Final adjustments and transition tiles can be worked out manually later.

Once you have started to put manually tiles (along the line coast for example) do not use autotexturing otherwise you

will loose all your manual work !


4) Put the rivers on the map . I have created new river tiles for my Maps . the river color should be the same as the sea.

I use photoshop to create the alpha layer on the river before saving the picture as a .tga file.

All texture tiles having water (river, larkes, sea) should be declared as sea type in the TE. Use Height Map and put

0 in the height Map scale. When setting a scale > 0, I have got trees and objects sinked into the ground.


5) Once rivers tiles have been put on the Map, if you use the Sea Level Adjustment feature, it will level down the sea level

all the sea areas (rivers too). I have found that instead of having rivers going up and down on the hills, the TE wil create

valleys with the river at the bottom. Using the smooth feature will round a bit the peaks of the maps and thus the valleys edges. For some maps (Germany for example) I could not use the Sea Level feature, I have got a CTD each time but for

the India map it has worked.


6) To put alpha objects (trees) and solid objects (buildings) on a tile, first create a small .ini file for that tile with Notepad.

The .ini file must have the name of the texture . Ex: river_farm.ini . In that .ini file type as first row, the name of

the texture (with .bmp as extension) between brackets : ex: [river_farm.bmp]


To put alpha or solid objects on a tile you will have to declare the different object types associated with the object texture

(ex: paddy_new.tga or jungle.tga for India) in the TE.

Each object must be declared using its coordinates. An object is located by its top left and bottom right corners.

for a tree you have only 4 coordinates. For a building the first 4 sets of coordinates define the sides of the building

and the 5th one the texture to be used for the roof. A shape is associated with an object. Use the X for trees, that way

you will see it from any direction you are coming in the game. use fence as shape for cows and fences.


In the object texture (ex: paddy_new.tga or jungle.tga) the Y axis is oriented top-down, the X axis left-right thus

the origin is the top left corner of the texture. The texture is assumed to be a square with 1 as edge size.

That is the reason the object's coordinates are between 0 and 1.

Once you have declared the object types you can edit the .bmp textures and put new objects on them.


To put easily objects :

First select new object, type its X,Y coordinates and click save. with the mouse, click on the small square representing the object on the map, then you can move it elsewhere, each time you click you will add new objects.

Thus putting a lot of trees and objects is just a matter of clicks. After saving your changes, do not forget to

save your texture, map and texturelist (very important). The TE will write in the small texture.ini file the types and coordinates of each object you have put on it. Sometimes you will have to save the texturelist several times to have all objects saved. if the nb of objects shown in the counter at the top of the .ini file does not match the object N° at the

bottom of the .ini file just reset the counter with the right value and save the texturelist again. I had to do that 2 or

times when putting more then 700 objects on a single tile.


Islands coast tiles have to be put manually to avoid having sea climbing the hills... I had to do that many times

when creating my Greece Map. Thus patience is required when creating a map but it is worth the work.

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