A Mars Scenario (with OCEANS!)


Nov 4, 2007
S, having had many health adventures that suck this fall and realizing that I really need to crawl before I walk, I messed around with Civ 5 Beyond Earth and remembered I wanted a gentle terraforming mod I could do to occupy by eyes and hands while listening to audiobooks.

I founds an old scenario called Mars 2 which had Mars with a theoretical ocean (if all the water melted and supposedly what the ocean looked like in the northern territory 3 billion years ago), but that was about a dying Mars, so I swapped out the icecaps and the oceans to create something more like the Fantastic Worlds Mars map with just some ocean at top and bottom to let the AI naviagte properly.

THe map is about 9000 tiles which is the same as the normal FW one and the standard earth map from regular Civ. I did some calculations and found out that when you aren't cheeky about ocean area not technically being land area (this became a very irritating joke quickly trying to goggle the numbers) Mars has 38% the surface area as earth. The 9000 tile Mars map of either type is 35% of the 32,000 tile world map from things like the Imperialism and the Overlord Map, and such, meaning You can get a real visceral idea of the difference in size, which I've included here,

What I haven't done yet is decide if I want to include Earth in some capacity the way the TOT version does, not sure it's a good idea, but the how losing contact does need to be established.

I am open to all pointers. I'm not TOO interested in the accuracy of the Mars map other than having a transformable basin up to the theoretical waterline and the vast Martian highlands of the south, cause it turns out most of the topology we know, the red soil, is only a couple of inches deep, so changing it doesn't seem like it would be very hard.

I'm mostly thinking about the terraformed spaces. The whole game is built around the three city resources and you screw with the trade arrows too much on land and POW! everything goes unbalanced.

If I have earth,m Earth is obviously a great place for population centers, but you can't cap population growth too bad on Mars without crippling the AI competitors, which given this is a building scenario, hard enough..

But I made some discoveries of scale, got something to experiment with, and right now I'm thinking about what kinds of terraformed landscapes a player might idly want to create on earth and Mars in the end game as they listen to something else casually. Something pretty, but also novel enough be kind of a painting. Probably just enough

I was thinking of returning to the shallow seas experiment I saw in the FW version of Midgard, where it was land but after an eruption it looked like shallow sees with coral and other bounties.


  • Screenshot (17).png
    Screenshot (17).png
    190.1 KB · Views: 49


CFC Archivist & Social Media Helper
Sep 24, 2016
Sorry to hear you're having some health troubles. I can't imagine what it's like to deal with the autism that I think I saw you mentioning the struggle with in another post a while back but I know what you mean about lousy health adventures lately. Took a few physical and mental health hits in late 2021 but you can't fix a problem until you admit there's a problem and face it, so 2022 is definitely going to be the year I work on getting fitter, healthier, and happier again. Better diet, better stress management, better chronic pain management, less computer time, more nature walks and runs along the beach, and some weight lifting is on the to do list!

Anyway JohnValdez's Mars 2 MGE scenario and Kestrel's Mars Now Extended ToT scenario (where you can return to earth) you mentioned are ones I recently processed in my preservation work so I'm guess that's possibly how you found them.

They're very good scenarios and I plan to make videos about them at soon too.

I forgot that John's scenario came with a 'authentic' map of a wet Mars. There's a cool wet Mars map and terrain made for Civ3 by Balthasar (who sadly died a year or 2 ago) and I remember seeing his work and thinking it would be cool to have a realistic wet mars map for Civ2 so that's cool that John made one, and even cooler that you're looking at using it in a enhanced ToT version!

As for adding Earth as a second world like Kestrel did that would be pretty cool. Kestrel went full beans and did a underground Mars world you could dig out and make cities in and also a undergound Earth world too which was pretty cool but in the end I mostly ingored them and so did the AIs as I think they couldn't figure out his special cave digger units.

I've found quite a few Mars scenarios over in my search and cataloging thread so if you want to see more examples of peoples Mars work there my findings there may interest you.
Mars / Lunar Colonization
- Civ2: Official Microprose Mars Now scenario (part of Fantastic Worlds addon), BenjaminBall's Martian Dawn (aka Mars 2300) scenario, JohnValdez's Mars 2 scenario, JThomson's The Martian Scenario scenario, JBG's Colonisation of the Moon scenario, FredericMeunie's MoonLand modpack, BenShragge's Aliens On Mars scenario, JohnValdez's Mars modpack, JohnValdez's Lunar - Apollo Mission modpack, JohnValdez's New Moon! scenario, and JesusFernandez's The Conquest of Mars scenario. Honorable mentions go to LukaRejec's Dead Worlds modpack (Saturn moon), and BowTieGuy's Prospero Now! scenario (10th planet based on Mars + Reversed Earth hybrid).
- Civ2ToT: Kestrel's Mars Now Extended scenario, Kestrel's Escape From Sol scenario includes Mars & Moon, & PlutonianEmpire's Pluto Rising scenario includes Mars & Pluto.
- Civ3: Hunterkiller's Mars: Alien Invasion scenario, and Michael's Mars Mod Russian scenario (He also made an English version & Music addon but FILE MISSING). Honorable mentions go to Balthasar's Mars terrain pack and some other unfinished attempts there.
- Civ4: The_J's BTS Mars Now scenario, and JBG's The Song of the Moon scenario.
- Civ5: FramedArchitect's Red Planet scenario.
- CivBE: Haven't looked yet
- Civ6: Haven't looked yet
- FreeCiv: Mars Terraformed scenario (not a total conversion scenario though).
- AlphaC: GeoModder's Mars Survivor scenario.
- FreeMars: There is a really cool Civ/Col/AlphaC hybrid FreeMars Project game that's not finished but quite playable.

A big shallow sea that land units can walk around either all of or part of is an excellent idea and would make yours different and unique compared to other existing attempts. People have used all sorts of interesting and out of the box ways to create fake oceans and land bridges over the years. In the FW Midgard scenario you mentioned it looks like they sacrificed the desert terrain slot for the shallow seas that didn't merge too badly with the regular Civ2 shoreline graphics and created a bit of a 'bikini atoll' reef islands effect, but I'm sure it could be done MUCH better in ToT.

The River War scenario used a rather interesting effect of creating Age of Empires 2 like shallow river areas by putting the shallow water graphics in unit slots and putting these 'units' on top of regular land which works as long as the faction trying to cross the river matches the one in control of the shallow water units lol.

IMO the 4 river mouth slots in Terrain2 are a underutilized source for shoreline graphics manipulation. After watching Metropolis use them for some tricks in our Heroes of Might & Magic mod I decided to take it further and use them to create large detailed land bridges in my Red Alert 2 Siege of New York scenario.
Large land bridge across water:

The river mouth shoreline illusion revealed:
Last edited:
Top Bottom