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UTILITY: Map Making Utility and Save Viewer

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  • UTILITY: Map Making Utility and Save Viewer

    I have written a small program to facilitate in the creation of user created maps. Basically, what the program does is take input from a loaded bitmap and convert the information in the bitmap directly into a civ3 .bic file which can then be edited in civ3edit.

    Some information about using the tool:
    1) the bitmap is imported without any coast. This may seem like a pain at first, but once you have loaded the file into civ3edit. Changing any terrain square anywhere on the map will generate all of the coastline for you (call it a feature if you like).

    2) The utility now supports terrain types. To change terrain values, use the included Palette file, or the bmp with the different colors and terrain values listed (both these files are included).

    3) The bitmap must have the appropriate size for the map size you want to create (map sizes are stored with half the width)so for the maps, the following sizes apply:
    *** Updated ***
    The New terrain sizes are as follows:
    Tiny=60X60
    Small=80X80
    Standard=100X100
    Large=140X140
    Huge=180X180
    Giga=256x256
    I haven't allowed free form sizes yet because I haven't been able to test them in the game, so I don't know if it works or not.

    4) Using the program is simple.
    -1st make your bitmap using a paint program, the saved bitmap can be any color depth, only the dimensions (see above) are important.
    -run the program
    -load the bitmap (from the file menu)
    -generate the map (again, from the file menu)
    -Output is written to the file "BMPToBIC Output.bic" which will be located in the same directory as the program is installed.

    *** New features added in release 3 ***
    5) You can now load in any .bmp, .bic or .sav file from civ3 and convert it into a map.

    6) You can now zoom the view of the map to x2 or x4.

    7) You can generate a 3D preview of the map to see what it would like on a globe. A few limitations apply to the 3d preview though, it currently only works in 24 bit color. 32 bit and 16 bit colors come out funny. It uses OpenGL, so if you have Windows 95 without the OpenGL drivers, install them. They are on the Civ3 CD.

    8) If a save file is loaded, it is possible to view the different units and cities for each of the civilizations in that save file. You will notice that only the index of the CIV is displayed (i.e. 0 = Barbarians, 1 = Romans, 6 = Russians, etc.). This is because the save file does not store these strings. I plan to display the names in the future though.

    9) Also with save files, holding the left mouse button down on a pixel where a unit or city is located will give some info about that city/unit.



    I have included a huge (Its now a GIGA - 256x256) .bmp of earth which you can use as a basis to get you started (this image could use some tweaking however, as I noticed that Cuba comes out connected to Mexico, and the Aleutians have altogether disappeared.

    This should make it real easy to overcome the limitation of having no small view with civ3edit, and should make it real easy to create super accurate maps of different geographys. If you would like to comment on it, please feel free.

    For the next version I hope to address:

    I have not implemented these features yet, basically they are pretty tough to figure out, and the results Iwas getting aren't as nice as the way that civ3edit does, hopefully I can come back to these in the future).

    Rivers,
    Coasts (Hopefully),
    Free-form Map sizes


    For the next release, I plan on giving you the ability to drag and drop things (units/cities) around in the map (without specifying coordinates like the other programs do. I also want to add additional things like FOW options, resources, etc.

    Let me know what you think.

    John
    Attached Files
    Last edited by LookANinja; December 7, 2001, 20:27.

  • #2


    Thanks!!!

    Comment


    • #3
      Dude, that rocks! Thank you for creating this.

      Comment


      • #4
        Hey, this is great!

        I'm going to wait until different terrain types are represented though before starting on any maps. Any idea when that feature will be added?

        Also, I've been away a while and am a bit out of the loop. Is it possible to make flat maps, or onlyl round maps (east and west connecting)? What about non-standard sizes - ie maps where the width is not half of the height?

        Comment


        • #5
          Once I figure out the exact procedure that is used to compute the different land features, I will extend the functionality to include this. I have it working partially, but there is still some stuff that needs to be done. Count on there being a specific palette that you will have to use in order to build the different terrain types.

          Another thing I am in the process of adding is the ability to get a small map preview of maps that are built with the editor. This seems to be working pretty well. (It pretty much works in reverse of the importing).

          As for the different sizes. The limitation appears to be a max of 256x256. Initially I thought there was some significance to the size of the file, but that doesn't seem to be the case, so I may remove the restrictions on bitmap size, but I need to test this further.

          I hope to have something ready a bit later this week.

          Comment


          • #6
            Plumbean

            Good job keep up the great work
            John Plavchan

            Comment


            • #7
              I have uploaded a new version of the utility. See the first post for more information. Suffice to say, this new version makes the program much more flexible and hopefully makes it even easier to build new maps.

              Comment


              • #8
                Hay thanks, but my bic keeps showing up in the civ edit program as a normal unedited water world...

                I used your palette. Also when I go to preview it shows nothing but a white screen... I can still load my .bmp map though. Once I convert it seems that the output.bic file didnt get the info...

                I am also using Windows 95 so this may be the problem... (Dont know why though). Should the program be installed in the same dir as the Civ3 edit?

                I still have my bmp map. Its 180 x 180...

                I could send it to you if ya want..

                Comment


                • #9
                  Try loading up the file that is included in the .zip, and see if that works. I tested that bitmap, so if it works, then the program should be working ok, and we can try and figure out where you went wrong with your bitmap. As for the preview. I should have noted that it only works with map files that were created with civ3edit, and it will not work if you turn the rules editor on (I suspect that is the reason for the white preview). Turning the rules editor on causes several sections to be added to the file, which my program doesn't know how to interpret yet, but I plan to support this in the future. (save games will also not work).

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    LookANinja: may I publish this utility on my site ( http://www.civguild.prv.pl )?
                    Thanks in advance for the reply.

                    LoD
                    I love the tick of the Geiger counter in the morning. It's the sound of... victory! :D
                    LoD - Owner/Webmaster of civ.org.pl
                    civ.org.pl's Discussion Forums and Multiplayer System for SMAC and Civs 2-4

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by LoD
                      LookANinja: may I publish this utility on my site ( http://www.civguild.prv.pl )?
                      Thanks in advance for the reply.

                      LoD
                      I have no problem with that, however if someone experiences problems etc. please refer them here.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        If I can get the handle on this... the ctp2 maps will be converted to civIII maps and I'll try my hand at some new maps... this rocks... long live bmp to anything convertors

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by LookANinja
                          Try loading up the file that is included in the .zip, and see if that works. I tested that bitmap, so if it works, then the program should be working ok, and we can try and figure out where you went wrong with your bitmap. As for the preview. I should have noted that it only works with map files that were created with civ3edit, and it will not work if you turn the rules editor on (I suspect that is the reason for the white preview). Turning the rules editor on causes several sections to be added to the file, which my program doesn't know how to interpret yet, but I plan to support this in the future. (save games will also not work).
                          Ok tried that, didnt work... Here is what I did step by step using your map...

                          1. Loaded .bmp file
                          2. Generated map, got the output.bic file
                          3. Tried to load it on the civ3edit program, noting but water world with polar caps.

                          I am using your latest version, with no success... And I am using the correct pallete... Both my map and the one in the zip have the same problems.... D/K I am only using coast and grassland colors, that way when I get into the edit program I can add the other info more accuratly...



                          NOTE to other users: Have any of you had these problems, or something simular.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            same here

                            no work. ocean and desert only. same pallette. included world map bmp no worky, either.

                            good program in theory.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              LookANinja: Of course, will do. Thanks for the authorization.
                              I love the tick of the Geiger counter in the morning. It's the sound of... victory! :D
                              LoD - Owner/Webmaster of civ.org.pl
                              civ.org.pl's Discussion Forums and Multiplayer System for SMAC and Civs 2-4

                              Comment

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