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Age of Kings Heaven » Forums » The University » Map Transformations in MS Paint
Topic Subject:Map Transformations in MS Paint
posted 02-21-18 11:06 AM CT (US)         

Easy Mapping in MS Paint

---== About ==---

Achieve efficient and high-fidelity map design, using almost any kind of source map -- any image with the proper aesthetic -- and basic drawing/image manipulation software.

---== How? ==---

I. Find a good map image that you want to use. It can be a hand-drawn fantasy map, a satellite image, a city plan, ... anything! As long as you're confident the source image will be suitable to use for your map design, you can make it work!

II. Apply the following transformations to the source material:

Note: If you want your North to point to the NE quadrant of the ingame map, you can easily swap -45 to 45 and 26 to -26.
Note2: When selecting the portion of the source material (cropping) you're gonna use, make sure the height/width ratio is 1:1. f.e.: 256*256px

III. Additionally, adjust the height of the resulting image slightly, so that it matches the ingame map's ratio. The height of the rhombus should be half its width. f.e.: 256*128

IV. After that, you can use a program like ghostit to make the AoE window transparent and have the map in your drawing software sit right behind your ingame map as the perfect drawing aid. Zooming out might be necessary :P You can increase the transparency in ghostit config menu, draw with higher contrasting colors in your drawing software and increase the visibilty of other map elements by drawing over them, to make things easier in-editor, especially when you're filling in the terrain of larger maps (f.e. rivers are sometimes hard to see in a lot of source material and the coloring may not always be obvious).

LUDIKris(i forgot to change the mapsize for a screenshot) map overlay example:

---== Outro ==---
As you can see, solid creative decisions (picking the right map aesthetic) and a few image transforms can really improve your terrain-painting workflow! I hope this helps your design process. If it does, let me know! Enjoy and have a nice day!

Oh, I forgot something that's also cool:

You can reverse these steps by putting in the negative values, so basically you can do the map and transform a screenshot of the ingame map into something like this:

Of course this is a bad example, I did too many transforms on that one to get it right, but you get the point. You could even enhance your image with photoshop and then turn it into a big hand-drawn map to include it as .pdf in the scenario folder. Just a thought

Check me out on Steam: GL252 I'm very slowly building a scenario and eyecandy map portfolio.

[This message has been edited by GL252 (edited 02-24-2018 @ 04:02 PM).]

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