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Pictorial Map Building

 
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Pictorial Map Building - 5/4/2011 3:57:01 AM   
Mad Russian


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I'm working on a 2km map. I decided that with all the questions being asked that pictures are certainly worth thousands of words. So, here is a step by step tutorial to making a PCO map.

Good Hunting.

MR

_____________________________

The most expensive thing in the world is free time.

Founder of HSG scenario design group for Combat Mission.
Panzer Command Ostfront Development Team.
Flashpoint Campaigns: Red Storm Development Team.
Post #: 1
RE: Pictorial Map Building - 5/4/2011 4:02:51 AM   
Mad Russian


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For me personally the first step in making a map is researching the historical engagement. That means getting as much information about the actual battle as possible. In this case I don't have a battle map and only have an approximation of where the fight took place.

The fight was east of Berlin on the Bollersdorf to Strausberg road. Time to open Google Earth and locate it in the main program.


Good Hunting.

MR







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_____________________________

The most expensive thing in the world is free time.

Founder of HSG scenario design group for Combat Mission.
Panzer Command Ostfront Development Team.
Flashpoint Campaigns: Red Storm Development Team.

(in reply to Mad Russian)
Post #: 2
RE: Pictorial Map Building - 5/4/2011 4:06:58 AM   
Mad Russian


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But I don't want a 10km map. What I'm looking for is a 2km map. So, I'm looking for the logical location where I think the battle took place.

Time to move down in Google Earth and take a closer look.

Good Hunting.

MR




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_____________________________

The most expensive thing in the world is free time.

Founder of HSG scenario design group for Combat Mission.
Panzer Command Ostfront Development Team.
Flashpoint Campaigns: Red Storm Development Team.

(in reply to Mad Russian)
Post #: 3
RE: Pictorial Map Building - 5/4/2011 4:08:24 AM   
Mad Russian


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I'll use the ruler in Google Earth to check and see where my 2km area will cover.

I don't think the battle includes the village since it's not mentioned in the description of the battle. Only that the fight takes place near Bollersdorf.

Good Hunting.

MR




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< Message edited by Mad Russian -- 5/4/2011 4:10:53 AM >


_____________________________

The most expensive thing in the world is free time.

Founder of HSG scenario design group for Combat Mission.
Panzer Command Ostfront Development Team.
Flashpoint Campaigns: Red Storm Development Team.

(in reply to Mad Russian)
Post #: 4
RE: Pictorial Map Building - 5/4/2011 4:12:01 AM   
Mad Russian


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Now that we have our location we are going to open up Map Maker while keeping Google Earth open as well.

That way I can use GE to help me locate the exact same spot in MM.

When I open MM it asks me what size maps I will be working with. That includes making new maps or editing existing maps. In this case I type in 2000 for a 2km map.

Good Hunting.

MR




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_____________________________

The most expensive thing in the world is free time.

Founder of HSG scenario design group for Combat Mission.
Panzer Command Ostfront Development Team.
Flashpoint Campaigns: Red Storm Development Team.

(in reply to Mad Russian)
Post #: 5
RE: Pictorial Map Building - 5/4/2011 4:23:14 AM   
Mad Russian


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Once MM is open you simply click anywhere in the Google Earth search box to active the map location feature. You can zoom in and out using your mouse wheel.

Good Hunting.

MR




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< Message edited by Mad Russian -- 5/4/2011 4:42:28 AM >


_____________________________

The most expensive thing in the world is free time.

Founder of HSG scenario design group for Combat Mission.
Panzer Command Ostfront Development Team.
Flashpoint Campaigns: Red Storm Development Team.

(in reply to Mad Russian)
Post #: 6
RE: Pictorial Map Building - 5/4/2011 4:35:21 AM   
Mad Russian


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By having both Google Earth and Map Maker open at the same time I can lay the Map Maker over GE and make it easier to find my battle location.

In the Map Maker window you can see the proximity to Berlin of both Strausberg and Bollersdorf.

Good Hunting.

MR




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< Message edited by Mad Russian -- 5/4/2011 4:38:32 AM >


_____________________________

The most expensive thing in the world is free time.

Founder of HSG scenario design group for Combat Mission.
Panzer Command Ostfront Development Team.
Flashpoint Campaigns: Red Storm Development Team.

(in reply to Mad Russian)
Post #: 7
RE: Pictorial Map Building - 5/4/2011 4:36:58 AM   
Mad Russian


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I will continue to move the location box lower and lower until I get the area I want in my map to be what is surrounded in the yellow MM location box.

Good Hunting.

MR




_____________________________

The most expensive thing in the world is free time.

Founder of HSG scenario design group for Combat Mission.
Panzer Command Ostfront Development Team.
Flashpoint Campaigns: Red Storm Development Team.

(in reply to Mad Russian)
Post #: 8
RE: Pictorial Map Building - 5/4/2011 4:58:24 AM   
Mad Russian


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You can see how I'm moving the MM location box closer to where I intend to create my map.

Good Hunting.

MR




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_____________________________

The most expensive thing in the world is free time.

Founder of HSG scenario design group for Combat Mission.
Panzer Command Ostfront Development Team.
Flashpoint Campaigns: Red Storm Development Team.

(in reply to Mad Russian)
Post #: 9
RE: Pictorial Map Building - 5/4/2011 5:01:33 AM   
Mad Russian


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Once I get it near Bollingsdorf then we start to position the location box more precisely over the area we want to recreate in our map.

Good Hunting.

MR




Attachment (1)

_____________________________

The most expensive thing in the world is free time.

Founder of HSG scenario design group for Combat Mission.
Panzer Command Ostfront Development Team.
Flashpoint Campaigns: Red Storm Development Team.

(in reply to Mad Russian)
Post #: 10
RE: Pictorial Map Building - 5/4/2011 5:02:25 AM   
Mad Russian


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Until I get the location box over the part of Google Earth I want to import into my map.

Good Hunting.

MR




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_____________________________

The most expensive thing in the world is free time.

Founder of HSG scenario design group for Combat Mission.
Panzer Command Ostfront Development Team.
Flashpoint Campaigns: Red Storm Development Team.

(in reply to Mad Russian)
Post #: 11
RE: Pictorial Map Building - 5/4/2011 5:05:14 AM   
Mad Russian


Posts: 12376
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From: Texas
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This is what our Map Maker will look like when I've positioned the location box where I want it. The hard part is finally finished.

It can be interesting to keep moving lower and lower and sometimes I lose my references and have to move back out. Not all locations are easily identifiable when you start zooming in on them. This location wasn't bad. I just had to zoom back out once.

Everything inside that yellow location square is about to be created in a 2km square battle map. Both in height and terrain.

Good Hunting.

MR




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< Message edited by Mad Russian -- 5/4/2011 5:07:41 AM >


_____________________________

The most expensive thing in the world is free time.

Founder of HSG scenario design group for Combat Mission.
Panzer Command Ostfront Development Team.
Flashpoint Campaigns: Red Storm Development Team.

(in reply to Mad Russian)
Post #: 12
RE: Pictorial Map Building - 5/4/2011 5:12:55 AM   
Mad Russian


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Now it's time to create the height map. To do that you simply click on the global symbol in the upper left hand corner of Map Maker. The global symbol is just to the right of the interface label H/Map:

At this point you could import your own height map from an outside source as well by simply clicking on the file button to the left of the global symbol and importing your height map file from another source.

MM will inform you that it needs to create an SRTM file. You would click "OK" and start the process.

Good Hunting.

MR




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< Message edited by Mad Russian -- 5/4/2011 6:36:53 PM >


_____________________________

The most expensive thing in the world is free time.

Founder of HSG scenario design group for Combat Mission.
Panzer Command Ostfront Development Team.
Flashpoint Campaigns: Red Storm Development Team.

(in reply to Mad Russian)
Post #: 13
RE: Pictorial Map Building - 5/4/2011 5:15:42 AM   
Mad Russian


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Then it asks if you want to open or save the file. The answer to that is to save it.

Good Hunting.

MR




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_____________________________

The most expensive thing in the world is free time.

Founder of HSG scenario design group for Combat Mission.
Panzer Command Ostfront Development Team.
Flashpoint Campaigns: Red Storm Development Team.

(in reply to Mad Russian)
Post #: 14
RE: Pictorial Map Building - 5/4/2011 5:17:37 AM   
Mad Russian


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MM doesn't default the save so you need to tell it to save the file in the Panzer Command Ostfront directory and in the DEMS folder.

Good Hunting.

MR




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_____________________________

The most expensive thing in the world is free time.

Founder of HSG scenario design group for Combat Mission.
Panzer Command Ostfront Development Team.
Flashpoint Campaigns: Red Storm Development Team.

(in reply to Mad Russian)
Post #: 15
RE: Pictorial Map Building - 5/4/2011 5:20:11 AM   
Mad Russian


Posts: 12376
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Once the file has been saved click on the small global icon in the upper left corner again and it will create the height map using the file you just saved.

Once the height map has been created MM gives you a statistical review of what was created and asks if you want to have the map smoothed. MM is simply asking if you want the terrain smoothed out. At this point I always tell MM no. I want to see what the actual terrain looks like before it gets changed. I can always smooth it later either in parts or as a whole and I prefer to do it later after I've looked at the map.

Good Hunting.

MR




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< Message edited by Mad Russian -- 5/4/2011 1:54:27 PM >


_____________________________

The most expensive thing in the world is free time.

Founder of HSG scenario design group for Combat Mission.
Panzer Command Ostfront Development Team.
Flashpoint Campaigns: Red Storm Development Team.

(in reply to Mad Russian)
Post #: 16
RE: Pictorial Map Building - 5/4/2011 5:25:11 AM   
Mad Russian


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At this point MM has created my height map. Since deciding that the yellow location box was correctly positioned to create the map area I want this will take about 3 minutes for a 2km map.

The gray scale is representative of darker color being lower and lighter color being higher terrain.

Good Hunting.

MR




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_____________________________

The most expensive thing in the world is free time.

Founder of HSG scenario design group for Combat Mission.
Panzer Command Ostfront Development Team.
Flashpoint Campaigns: Red Storm Development Team.

(in reply to Mad Russian)
Post #: 17
RE: Pictorial Map Building - 5/4/2011 5:30:06 AM   
Mad Russian


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From: Texas
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Now that the height map is imported we need a terrain map.

On the other side of the MM interface is another small global depiction. To get a terrain map we click on the right hand globe this time. These are just to the right of the label T/Map.

At this point you could import your own terrain map from an outside source as well by simply clicking on the file button to the left of the global symbol and importing your terrain map file from another source.

When you click the global selection button MM will ask you if you want to use a set of parameters for creating the terrain map. I always accept the ones that are the default.


Good Hunting.

MR




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< Message edited by Mad Russian -- 5/4/2011 7:42:55 PM >


_____________________________

The most expensive thing in the world is free time.

Founder of HSG scenario design group for Combat Mission.
Panzer Command Ostfront Development Team.
Flashpoint Campaigns: Red Storm Development Team.

(in reply to Mad Russian)
Post #: 18
RE: Pictorial Map Building - 5/4/2011 5:33:40 AM   
Mad Russian


Posts: 12376
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Once you tell MM to create your terrain map it will create it and then ask if you want to import the terrain map into MM at this point. I do.

Good Hunting.

MR




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_____________________________

The most expensive thing in the world is free time.

Founder of HSG scenario design group for Combat Mission.
Panzer Command Ostfront Development Team.
Flashpoint Campaigns: Red Storm Development Team.

(in reply to Mad Russian)
Post #: 19
RE: Pictorial Map Building - 5/4/2011 5:35:33 AM   
Mad Russian


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From: Texas
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And now we have both a height map in gray scale and a terrain map which looks like this.

This very moment, all those colors on that terrain map mean nothing. We've not assigned any texture to them yet.

Good Hunting.

MR






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_____________________________

The most expensive thing in the world is free time.

Founder of HSG scenario design group for Combat Mission.
Panzer Command Ostfront Development Team.
Flashpoint Campaigns: Red Storm Development Team.

(in reply to Mad Russian)
Post #: 20
RE: Pictorial Map Building - 5/4/2011 5:41:26 AM   
Mad Russian


Posts: 12376
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From: Texas
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This is the point where I save my map. I will name it with a name that means something to me so that I can easily call it up when I need it.

I start all my maps with Hsg, then add the map size, which in this case is a 2km map so I put the number 2. Then what this map is about, which in this case is where Korner won the Knight's Cross.

My map name then becomes:

Hsg2kckorner.

You only want to capitalize the first letter of the maps name. There can be no spaces in the name.

Once I've typed in the map name I select build map which is the small crossed hammers just to the right of the map name. When you put your mouse of the hammers symbol it says build the map. That's what I will do now.

Good Hunting.

MR




Attachment (1)

_____________________________

The most expensive thing in the world is free time.

Founder of HSG scenario design group for Combat Mission.
Panzer Command Ostfront Development Team.
Flashpoint Campaigns: Red Storm Development Team.

(in reply to Mad Russian)
Post #: 21
RE: Pictorial Map Building - 5/4/2011 5:42:50 AM   
Mad Russian


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From: Texas
Status: offline
MM wants to know if this is a final build or not. It will ask if you want to do a Mega Texture build. If this is a final build the answer is yes. In this case we are doing a preliminary build and the answer is no.

Good Hunting.

MR




Attachment (1)

_____________________________

The most expensive thing in the world is free time.

Founder of HSG scenario design group for Combat Mission.
Panzer Command Ostfront Development Team.
Flashpoint Campaigns: Red Storm Development Team.

(in reply to Mad Russian)
Post #: 22
RE: Pictorial Map Building - 5/4/2011 5:45:17 AM   
Mad Russian


Posts: 12376
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From: Texas
Status: offline
Once MM has combined the height map and the terrain map it will give you the completed map that you named. When it's done it will show the statistics for the map features. MM does this every time you save the map.

As you can see there is nothing on this map. It shows that it took all of 24.9 seconds to create this map. It will take longer in subsequent saves as I put more textures and structures on the map. This is mostly open terrain though so it won't have a lot even when it's completed.

When the map has been created and saved it asks if you want to look at the map in SceneEditor. This is a program that will open automatically if you say yes and show you the elevation of the map and the locations of all structures and textures.

Good Hunting.

MR




Attachment (1)

< Message edited by Mad Russian -- 5/4/2011 5:50:05 AM >


_____________________________

The most expensive thing in the world is free time.

Founder of HSG scenario design group for Combat Mission.
Panzer Command Ostfront Development Team.
Flashpoint Campaigns: Red Storm Development Team.

(in reply to Mad Russian)
Post #: 23
RE: Pictorial Map Building - 5/4/2011 5:49:53 AM   
Mad Russian


Posts: 12376
Joined: 3/16/2008
From: Texas
Status: offline
If you said you wanted to look at the map in SceneEditor then it would open and in this case our map looks like this.

Good Hunting.

MR




Attachment (1)

_____________________________

The most expensive thing in the world is free time.

Founder of HSG scenario design group for Combat Mission.
Panzer Command Ostfront Development Team.
Flashpoint Campaigns: Red Storm Development Team.

(in reply to Mad Russian)
Post #: 24
RE: Pictorial Map Building - 5/4/2011 5:51:16 AM   
Mad Russian


Posts: 12376
Joined: 3/16/2008
From: Texas
Status: offline
That's all there is to creating a map. You can also import either the height map, the terrain map or both from another source.

Good Hunting.

MR


_____________________________

The most expensive thing in the world is free time.

Founder of HSG scenario design group for Combat Mission.
Panzer Command Ostfront Development Team.
Flashpoint Campaigns: Red Storm Development Team.

(in reply to Mad Russian)
Post #: 25
RE: Pictorial Map Building - 5/4/2011 5:55:00 AM   
Mad Russian


Posts: 12376
Joined: 3/16/2008
From: Texas
Status: offline
It's now time to think of doing texturing on your map. Every color on this map can be assigned a texture. You have quite a few colors.

Good Hunting.

MR




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_____________________________

The most expensive thing in the world is free time.

Founder of HSG scenario design group for Combat Mission.
Panzer Command Ostfront Development Team.
Flashpoint Campaigns: Red Storm Development Team.

(in reply to Mad Russian)
Post #: 26
RE: Pictorial Map Building - 5/4/2011 6:00:20 AM   
Mad Russian


Posts: 12376
Joined: 3/16/2008
From: Texas
Status: offline
To know specifically what colors have been assigned to this map you can go to the bottom of the terrain panel and check the Terrain Color drop down menu.

In this case MM created 8 colors on this map. I'll change that before I'm through.

Good Hunting.

MR






Attachment (1)

_____________________________

The most expensive thing in the world is free time.

Founder of HSG scenario design group for Combat Mission.
Panzer Command Ostfront Development Team.
Flashpoint Campaigns: Red Storm Development Team.

(in reply to Mad Russian)
Post #: 27
RE: Pictorial Map Building - 5/4/2011 6:15:56 AM   
Mad Russian


Posts: 12376
Joined: 3/16/2008
From: Texas
Status: offline
Note that MM can be particular about some things. Particularly when it's loading a map from your files.

If you tell MM to load a map DO NOT DO ANYTHING UNTIL IT IS LOADED!!!!!!

If you do ANYTHING while that map is loading you will get this error message.

Good Hunting.

MR




Attachment (1)

_____________________________

The most expensive thing in the world is free time.

Founder of HSG scenario design group for Combat Mission.
Panzer Command Ostfront Development Team.
Flashpoint Campaigns: Red Storm Development Team.

(in reply to Mad Russian)
Post #: 28
RE: Pictorial Map Building - 5/4/2011 6:29:42 AM   
Mad Russian


Posts: 12376
Joined: 3/16/2008
From: Texas
Status: offline
Here is an example of what that can look like.

From this......

Good Hunting.

MR




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_____________________________

The most expensive thing in the world is free time.

Founder of HSG scenario design group for Combat Mission.
Panzer Command Ostfront Development Team.
Flashpoint Campaigns: Red Storm Development Team.

(in reply to Mad Russian)
Post #: 29
RE: Pictorial Map Building - 5/4/2011 6:30:08 AM   
Mad Russian


Posts: 12376
Joined: 3/16/2008
From: Texas
Status: offline
To this.....

Good Hunting.

MR




Attachment (1)

_____________________________

The most expensive thing in the world is free time.

Founder of HSG scenario design group for Combat Mission.
Panzer Command Ostfront Development Team.
Flashpoint Campaigns: Red Storm Development Team.

(in reply to Mad Russian)
Post #: 30
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