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The Complete Guide To Map Creation (image heavy)

Discussion in 'Civ4 Strategy Articles' started by Mortac, Oct 10, 2007.

  1. Mortac

    Mortac Warlord

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2006
    Messages:
    172
    Location:
    Karlskrona, Sweden

    The Complete Guide To Map Generation

    There is an excellent semi-official map guide written by Robert B. Thomas (a.k.a. Sirian), who coded on the map generator himself. You can find it either here or Moderator Action: *snip* link is invalid. . However, that guide does not cover all map types available today, including popular ones such as Hemispheres, Fractal and Big and Small, as well as the new map types available with v3.17. This guide will cover all official maps, so in addition to the 13 different map types not covered in Sirian's guide, feel free to use it as a complementary to the map types described in his guide.

    Understanding exactly how each setting in the map generator will impact a world to be created can be both a bit difficult and confusing. For example, there is nothing stating how a Highlands or Fractal map will look like unless you actually try them. Neither might it be easy to understand certain map-specific settings and which results will be given from them. In addition, one might question how Normal Continents on a High Sealevel would compare to Islands on a Low Sealevel.

    Maps that do not turn out as expected are usually not maps you will be satisfied with. Personally, I find it crucial to understand what kind of map you are about to generate, as a desired map often leads to a good game. With the many different options available, it is not always easy to create the map you are looking for. This guide will hopefully clear up some confusion and give you more power over your results.

    In this guide, most of the examples will show three different maps generated with the same settings. This is to show possible differences that can occur when generating a map even if the settings are the same. The exceptions to this three-map-rule are when the differences would be too minimal, or when the various options in all their possible combinations would create a flood of images if they were all represented graphically. Because of this, it might occasionally be a good thing to refer to other map types for more information on certain settings. The main point of this guide, however, remains to graphically show the results of different map configurations.

    Note: The guide has been split into several posts due to the forums limiting users to 20 images per post.

    PLEASE NOTE: If some of the spoiler tags don't show anything, this is most likely because the page did not finish loading yet. Since there are about 30 megabytes of map images on this page, it might be a good idea to let it load for a bit before using it. This is especially true if you're on a slow connection.

    Now, let's get started...


    All maps in this guide are generated with Huge Map Size, Medium Sealevel and a Tropical Climate unless stated otherwise!

    Quicklinks in alphabetical order:

    Quicklinks in order of appearance:
    #1 Hemispheres
    #2 Fractal
    #3 Big and Small
    #4 Medium and Small
    #5 Archipelago
    #6 Balanced
    #7 Continents
    #8 Custom Continents
    #9 Shuffle
    #10 Pangaea
    #11 Terra
    #12 Tilted Axis
    #13 Global Highlands
    #14 Highlands
    #15 Great Plains
    #16 Inland Sea
    #17 Lakes
    #18 Arboria
    #19 Boreal
    #20 Ice Age
    #21 Oasis
    #22 Rainforest
    #23 Fantasy Realm
    #24 Islands
    #25 Donut
    #26 Team Battleground
    #27 Mirror
    #28 Maze
    #29 Hub
    #30 Ring
    #31 Wheel
    #32 Earth2
    #33 Tectonics

    Map Size Comparison



    #1 Hemispheres

    Available Settings: Climate, Sealevel, Continents Size, Islands Size, Number of Continents

    Used settings:
    Continents Size: Varied
    Islands Size: Islands
    Number of Continents: 3


    • [*]As you guessed, the Continents Size option of Varied will create a random continent type for each continent on the map.
      [*]Even though the Number of Continents is set to 3, it might not look that way partly due to the Water Level setting, as well as how the map generator actually works. Remember that a continent is not necessarily one single land mass (think Oceania).
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Continents Size: Varied
    Islands Size: Islands
    Number of Continents: 5


    • [*]Same settings as above, only now with 5 continents instead of 3.
      [*]Total amount of land mass remains mostly the same.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Continents Size: Snaky Continents
    Islands Size: Islands
    Number of Continents: 3


    • [*]Now we will see how a map with only Snaky Continents will turn out.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Continents Size: Snaky Continents
    Islands Size: Islands
    Number of Continents: 5


    • [*]Only Snaky Continents again, but this time with 5 continents.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Continents Size: Normal Continents
    Islands Size: Islands
    Number of Continents: 3


    • [*]Now we will see how a map with only Normal Continents will turn out.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Continents Size: Normal Continents
    Islands Size: Islands
    Number of Continents: 5


    • [*]Only Normal Continents again, but this time with 5 continents.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Continents Size: Massive Continents
    Islands Size: Islands
    Number of Continents: 3


    • [*]Now we will see how a map with only Massive Continents will turn out.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Continents Size: Massive Continents
    Islands Size: Islands
    Number of Continents: 5


    • [*]Only Massive Continents again, but this time with 5 continents.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Continents Size: 1) Snaky 2) Normal 3) Massive
    Islands Size: Tiny Islands
    Number of Continents: 4


    • [*]We will now use Tiny Islands. These islands are tinier than some might think, as they are usually just one plot in size. This setting will generate certain areas full of 1-3 square plots. However, the difference is not very big compared to the normal Islands setting.
      [*]The first map has Snaky Continents, the second has Normal Continents and the third map has Massive Continents.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Sealevel: 1) Low 2) Medium 3) High
    Continents Size: Snaky Continents
    Islands Size: Islands
    Number of Continents: 4


    • [*]Time to check the impact of Sealevel for Snaky Continents.
      [*]Obviously, a Low Sealevel will have more landmass, and vice-versa.
      [*]The higher the Sealevel, the more likely it is that you will get areas of archipelago.
      [*]The first map has Low, the second has Medium and the third map has High Sealevel.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Sealevel: 1) Low 2) Medium 3) High
    Continents Size: Normal Continents
    Islands Size: Islands
    Number of Continents: 4


    • [*]Time to check the impact of Sealevel for Normal Continents.
      [*]The first map has Low, the second has Medium and the third map has High Sealevel.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Sealevel: 1) Low 2) Medium 3) High
    Continents Size: Massive Continents
    Islands Size: Islands
    Number of Continents: 4


    • [*]Time to check the impact of Sealevel for Massive Continents.
      [*]The first map has Low, the second has Medium and the third map has High Sealevel.
    Spoiler :






    #2 Fractal

    Available Settings: Climate, Sealevel, World Wrap, Resources

    Fractal maps are less configurable, but that is not always a bad thing as they also have a tendency to be more random. Exploration and surprise are both often desired, and Fractal delivers! Fractal, in comparison to Hemispheres, usually have more compact continents, less archipelago and a little less total land mass. The main configuration option for Fractal maps is the World Wrap setting. There are three such options:
    • Cylindrical: You can cross the world at the east and west side of the map. This is the usual way Civilization maps work.
    • Flat: You can not cross the edge of the map in any direction.
    • Toroidal: You can cross the edge of the map in any direction.

    Now, let's have a look at some Fractal maps at different settings:


    Used settings:
    World Wrap: Cylindrical

    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    World Wrap: Flat

    • [*]A Flat setting will have no impact on the layout of the map compared to a Cylindrical map. This change will basically only prevent you from crossing the east and west edges of the map, but we will still take a look at three maps generated with this setting.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    World Wrap: Toroidal

    • [*]A Toroidal setting will be likely to create long stretching continents from north to south.
      [*]This setting allows you to cross any edge of the map.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Sealevel: Low
    World Wrap: 1) Cylindrical 2) Flat 3) Toroidal


    • [*]A Low Sealevel will often cause massive continents, sometimes Pangea-like.
      [*]The first map is Cylindrical, the second is Flat and the third is Toroidal.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Sealevel: High
    World Wrap: 1) Cylindrical 2) Flat 3) Toroidal


    • [*]A High Sealevel will decrease the size of the continents by quite a bit.
      [*]The first map is Cylindrical, the second is Flat and the third is Toroidal.
    Spoiler :



     
  2. Mortac

    Mortac Warlord

    Joined:
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    Messages:
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    Location:
    Karlskrona, Sweden


    #3 Big and Small

    Available Settings: Climate, Sealevel, Continents Size, Islands Size, Island Overlap

    For more information on Islands Size, refer to Hemispheres in section #1.


    Used settings:
    Continents Size: Snaky Continents
    Island Overlap: Island Region Separate


    • [*]Island Region Separate will ensure a map with more open oceans. This will be more apparent in combination with other continent sizes, since Snaky Continents have a tendency to remind of archipelagos already.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Continents Size: Snaky Continents
    Island Overlap: Islands Mixed In


    • [*]Islands Mixed In will generate a lot of small islands covering most areas that would otherwise be open seas. If you prefer maps with archipelagos, this option is probably for you.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Continents Size: Normal Continents
    Island Overlap: Island Region Separate


    • [*]Now let's take a look at Normal Continents instead.
      [*]Island Region Separate will ensure a map with more open oceans.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Continents Size: Normal Continents
    Island Overlap: Islands Mixed In


    • [*]Islands Mixed In will generate a lot of small islands covering most areas that would otherwise be open seas. If you prefer maps with archipelagos, this option is probably for you.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Continents Size: Massive Continents
    Island Overlap: Island Region Separate


    • [*]Next up are the Massive Continents. As you will notice, Massive Continents do not necessarily mean you will always get larger continents than with a Normal Continents setting, but they are usually more compact.
      [*]Island Region Separate will ensure a map with more open oceans.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Continents Size: Massive Continents
    Island Overlap: Islands Mixed In


    • [*]Islands Mixed In will generate a lot of small islands covering most areas that would otherwise be open seas. If you prefer maps with archipelagos, this option is probably for you.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Sealevel: Low
    Continents Size: 1) Snaky 2) Normal 3) Massive
    Island Overlap: Island Region Separate


    • [*]Now we will check the impact of a Low Sealevel setting, which is good if you prefer more landmass.
      [*]The first map has Snaky Continents, the second has Normal Continents and the third map has Massive Continents.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Sealevel: Low
    Continents Size: 1) Snaky 2) Normal 3) Massive
    Island Overlap: Islands Mixed In


    • [*]Now we will check Low Sealevel with Islands Mixed In.
      [*]The first map has Snaky Continents, the second has Normal Continents and the third map has Massive Continents.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Sealevel: High
    Continents Size: 1) Snaky 2) Normal 3) Massive
    Island Overlap: Island Region Separate


    • [*][*]Now we will check the impact of a High Sealevel setting, which is good if you prefer less landmass.
      [*]The first map has Snaky Continents, the second has Normal Continents and the third map has Massive Continents.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Sealevel: High
    Continents Size: 1) Snaky 2) Normal 3) Massive
    Island Overlap: Islands Mixed In


    • [*]Now we will check High Sealevel with Islands Mixed In.
      [*]The first map has Snaky Continents, the second has Normal Continents and the third map has Massive Continents.
    Spoiler :






    #4 Medium and Small

    Available Settings: Climate, Sealevel, Continents Size, Islands Size, Island Overlap

    In comparison to Big and Small, these maps are a little less random in appearance when you look at the map as a whole. The pattern is a split between east and west. Not surprisingly, this map type also creates smaller main continents.

    Used settings:
    Continents Size: Normal Continents
    Islands Size: Islands
    Island Overlap: Island Region Separate


    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Continents Size: Snaky Continents
    Islands Size: Islands
    Island Overlap: Island Region Separate


    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Continents Size: Islands
    Islands Size: Islands
    Island Overlap: Island Region Separate


    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Continents Size: Unpredictable
    Islands Size: Islands
    Island Overlap: Island Region Separate


    • [*]An Unpredictable Continents Size will be mostly similar to Normal Continents, but the continents are usually a little less compact. They would be best categorised between Normal Continents and Snaky Continents.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Continents Size: 1) Normal 2) Snaky 3) Islands 4) Unpredictable
    Islands Size: Islands
    Island Overlap: Islands Mixed In


    • [*]Islands Mixed In will, in comparison to Big and Small maps, not cover all empty oceans with small islands. Instead, each continent is more likely to be surrounded by islands, but the split between east and west remains.
      [*]The first map shows Normal Continents, the second shows Snaky, the third shows Islands and the fourth shows Unpredictable Continents.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Continents Size: 1) Normal 2) Snaky 3) Islands 4) Unpredictable
    Islands Size: Tiny Islands
    Island Overlap: Islands Region Separate


    • [*]Now we will check Tiny Islands. As been said before, Tiny Islands will not make much of a difference compared to Islands, but it is noticeable.
      [*]The first map shows Normal Continents, the second shows Snaky, the third shows Islands and the fourth shows Unpredictable Continents.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Continents Size: 1) Normal 2) Snaky 3) Islands 4) Unpredictable
    Islands Size: Tiny Islands
    Island Overlap: Islands Region Mixed In


    • [*]Same as before, but now with Islands Region Mixed In. Islands will now be more scattered.
      [*]The first map shows Normal Continents, the second shows Snaky, the third shows Islands and the fourth shows Unpredictable Continents.
    Spoiler :



     
  3. Mortac

    Mortac Warlord

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2006
    Messages:
    172
    Location:
    Karlskrona, Sweden


    #5 Archipelago

    Available Settings: Climate, Sealevel, Landmass Type, World Wrap, Resources

    Archipelagos are generally avoided by people that do not like small islands, however, an Archipelago map can be very interesting for anyone and offer quite large continents when correctly configured.

    Since maps that generally do not have large continents are very sensitive to Sealevel, this setting will be included in all maps we will look at for Archipelagos.


    Used settings:
    Sealevel: 1) Low 2) Medium 3) High
    Landmass Type: Archipelago
    World Wrap: Cylindrical


    • [*]First up is Landmass Type Archipelago.
      [*]The first map shows a Low Sealevel, the second shows Medium Sealevel and the third map shows High Sealevel.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Sealevel: 1) Low 2) Medium 3) High
    Landmass Type: Snaky Continents
    World Wrap: Cylindrical


    • [*]Now for Snaky Continents.
      [*]The first map shows a Low Sealevel, the second shows Medium Sealevel and the third map shows High Sealevel.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Sealevel: 1) Low 2) Medium 3) High
    Landmass Type: Tiny Islands
    World Wrap: Cylindrical


    • [*]Next is the Landmass Type of Tiny Islands.
      [*]The first map shows a Low Sealevel, the second shows Medium Sealevel and the third map shows High Sealevel.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Sealevel: 1) Low 2) Medium 3) High
    Landmass Type: Snaky Continents
    World Wrap: Toroidal


    • [*]A Toroidal World Wrap setting has a bigger impact on a map when larger continents are available compared to small islands. Obviously, this is because small islands will be quite evenly spread across the map no matter the World Wrap setting, whereas continents are able to stretch further from north to south. Therefore, we will only look at Snaky Continents at different Sealevels with a Toroidal World Wrap setting.
      [*]The first map shows a Low Sealevel, the second shows Medium Sealevel and the third map shows High Sealevel.
    Spoiler :






    #6 Balanced

    Available Settings: Climate, Sealevel, World Wrap

    Balanced maps will always generate one large continent.


    Used settings:
    World Wrap: Cylindrical

    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    World Wrap: Toroidal

    Spoiler :






    #7 Continents

    Available Settings: Sealevel, World Wrap, Resources

    Continents will, as expected, generate large continents.


    Used settings:
    World Wrap: Cylindrical

    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    World Wrap: Toroidal

    A Toroidal setting on this map type generates 4 continents every single time.

    Spoiler :






    #8 Custom Continents

    Available Settings: Climate, Sealevel, Number of Continents, World Wrap, Resources

    Custom Continents are actually not all that customizable. You can choose the amount of continents, but that's it for continent configuration.

    As I have stated before, remember that a continent is not necessarily one landmass.


    Used settings:
    Number of Continents: 3
    World Wrap: Cylindrical


    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Number of Continents: 5
    World Wrap: Cylindrical


    • [*]A very apparent pattern often appears with this number of continents, as you will see.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Number of Continents: 3
    World Wrap: Toroidal


    • [*]Now we will check a Toroidal setting.
      [*]It might not always look like it due to the way the map generator works, but the third map does indeed have Number of Continents set to 3.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Number of Continents: 5
    World Wrap: Toroidal


    • [*]And finally, a Toroidal World Wrap with 5 continents.
      [*]Here it becomes apparent that the map script does not take advantage of a Toroidal World Wrap, but the north and south borders will be gone, of course.
    Spoiler :






    #9 Shuffle

    Available Settings: Climate, Sealevel, World Wrap, Resources

    Shuffle will create very random maps. If you want the map to be a complete surprise, Shuffle might be for you!


    Used settings:
    World Wrap: Cylindrical

    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    World Wrap: Toroidal

    Spoiler :






    #10 Pangaea

    Available Settings: Climate, Sealevel, Shoreline, World Wrap, Resources

    Pangaea gives you one huge continent. World Wrap will have no impact on the actual rendering of the map.


    Used settings:
    World Wrap: Cylindrical
    Shoreline: Natural


    • [*]A Natural Shoreline will create irregular continents and tiny islands in certain regions.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    World Wrap: Cylindrical
    Shoreline: Pressed


    • [*]A Pressed Shoreline will create more compact continents and likely also a few tiny islands in certain regions.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    World Wrap: Cylindrical
    Shoreline: Solid


    • [*]A Solid Shoreline will create very compact continents without islands, save rarely one or two larger ones.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Sealevel: Low
    World Wrap: Cylindrical
    Shoreline: 1) Natural 2) Pressed 3) Solid


    • [*]Now we will check the impact of a Low Sealevel in combination with each Shoreline setting. This will, naturally, give you more landmass.
      [*]The first map has a Natural Shoreline, the second has a Pressed Shoreline and the third has a Solid Shoreline.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Sealevel: High
    World Wrap: Cylindrical
    Shoreline: 1) Natural 2) Pressed 3) Solid


    • [*]Now we will check the impact of a High Sealevel in combination with each Shoreline setting. This will, naturally, give you less landmass.
      [*]The first map has a Natural Shoreline, the second has a Pressed Shoreline and the third has a Solid Shoreline.
    Spoiler :



     
  4. Mortac

    Mortac Warlord

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2006
    Messages:
    172
    Location:
    Karlskrona, Sweden


    #11 Terra

    Available Settings: Climate, Sealevel, World Wrap, Resources

    Terra, unsurprisingly, tries to create an Earth-like map. Every time, it will create one large continent (resembling Euro-Asia) and a smaller continent with a thin connection in the middle (resembling America).


    Used settings:
    World Wrap: Cylindrical

    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    World Wrap: Toroidal


    • [*]Toroidal will have no impact on the map layout.
    Spoiler :






    #12 Tilted Axis

    Available Settings: Climate, Sealevel, Landmass Size, Resources

    Tilted Axis maps will tilt the north and south to the east and west.


    Used settings:
    Landmass Size: Massive Continents

    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Landmass Size: Normal Continents

    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Landmass Size: Small Continents

    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Landmass Size: Islands

    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Landmass Size: Tiny Islands

    Spoiler :






    #13 Global Highlands

    Available Settings: Climate, Sealevel, Mountain Pattern, Mountain Density, Landmass Size, World Wrap, Resources

    Global Highlands will create a very random map with a few decently large continents. These maps have a lot of hills and especially mountain peaks. This map type is great if you enjoy limited territory for building cities and fighting for vital passages between mountain ridges.


    Used settings:
    Mountain Pattern: 1) Scattered 2) Ridgelines 3) Clustered
    Mountain Density: Normal Peaks
    Landmass Size: Normal Continents
    World Wrap: Cylindrical


    • [*]Your choice of a Mountain Pattern will depend on if you prefer Scattered mountain peaks across the map, lines of peaks with Ridgelines or having them Clustered in specific areas. We will look at all of them in combination with a different Mountain Density, starting with Normal Peaks.
      [*]The first map shows Scattered, the second shows Ridgelines and the third map shows Clustered.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Mountain Pattern: 1) Scattered 2) Ridgelines 3) Clustered
    Mountain Density: Dense Peaks
    Landmass Size: Normal Continents
    World Wrap: Cylindrical


    • [*]Next is Dense Peaks.
      [*]The first map shows Scattered, the second shows Ridgelines and the third map shows Clustered.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Mountain Pattern: 1) Scattered 2) Ridgelines 3) Clustered
    Mountain Density: Thin Peaks
    Landmass Size: Normal Continents
    World Wrap: Cylindrical


    • [*]Next is Thin Peaks.
      [*]The first map shows Scattered, the second shows Ridgelines and the third map shows Clustered.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Mountain Pattern: Ridgelines
    Mountain Density: Normal Peaks
    Landmass Size: 1) Snaky 2) Normal 3) Massive
    World Wrap: Cylindrical


    • [*]Now we will compare the different Landmass Sizes.
      [*]The first map shows Snaky, the second shows Normal and the third map shows Massive.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Mountain Pattern: Ridgelines
    Mountain Density: Normal Peaks
    Landmass Size: 1) Snaky 2) Normal 3) Massive
    World Wrap: Toroidal


    • [*]Now to compare the different Landmass Sizes again, but this time with a Toroidal World Wrap.
      [*]The first map shows Snaky, the second shows Normal and the third map shows Massive.
    Spoiler :






    #14 Highlands

    Available Settings: Mountain Pattern, Mountain Density, Water Setting, World Wrap, Resources

    Highlands maps are very different from Global Highlands and will create one continent spanning the whole map.

    Refer to section #13 about Global Highlands for more info on Mountain Pattern and Mountain Density.


    Used settings:
    Mountain Pattern: Ridgelines
    Mountain Density: Normal Peaks
    World Wrap: Cylindrical
    Water Setting: 1) Small Lakes 2) Large Lakes 3) Seas


    • [*]The first map shows a Water Setting with Small Lakes, the second shows Large Lakes and the third shows Seas.
    Spoiler :






    #15 Great Plains

    Available Settings: World Wrap

    Great Plains will create one continent spanning the whole map. It is not particularly random and this map shown is close to what you will get each time.


    Used settings:
    World Wrap: Cylindrical

    Spoiler :






    #16 Inland Sea

    Available Settings: Climate, Sealevel, World Wrap, Resources

    Inland Sea will create one continent spanning the whole map with a large sea in the center.


    Used settings:
    Sealevel: 1) Low 2) Medium 3) High
    World Wrap: Flat


    • [*]The first map shows a Low Sealevel, the second shows Medium Sealevel and the third map shows a High Sealevel.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Sealevel: 1) Low 2) Medium 3) High
    World Wrap: Cylindrical


    • [*]Now we do the same thing with a Cylindrical World Wrap.
      [*]The first map shows a Low Sealevel, the second shows Medium Sealevel and the third map shows a High Sealevel.
    Spoiler :






    #17 Lakes

    Available Settings: Climate, Sealevel, World Wrap, Resources

    Lakes will create one continent spanning the whole map with several lakes of varying sizes.


    Used settings:
    Sealevel: 1) Medium 2) High 3) High
    World Wrap: 1) Cylindrical 2) Cylindrical 3) Toroidal



    • [*]To make the lakes more apparent, we will not check Low Sealevel.
      [*]Toroidal will have a strange impact on the southern border by causing a long stretch of water all the way through from east to west (as seen in the last map).
      [*]The first map shows a Medium Sealevel on a Cylindrical map, the second shows High Sealevel on a Cylindrical map, and the third shows High Sealevel on a Toroidal map.
    Spoiler :






    #18 Arboria

    Available Settings: World Wrap

    Arboria resembles Pangaea, but looks less natural and is less configurable. One massive continent with small lakes and a decent amount of mountain peaks will be generated, but no deserts.


    Used settings:
    World Wrap: 1) Flat 2) Cylindrical 3) Toroidal

    • [*]World Wrap has no effect on the actual map layout, but we will use different World Wrap settings anyway since it's the only setting available.
      [*]The first map is Flat, the second is Cylindrical and the third is Toroidal.
    Spoiler :






    #19 Boreal

    Available Settings: World Wrap

    Boreal maps will create one continent spanning the whole map. This map has a cold climate and is covered with forests and clustered mountain peaks. Some relatively large lakes will be generated.


    Used settings:
    World Wrap: 1) Flat 2) Cylindrical 3) Toroidal

    • [*]The World Wrap setting will only have a slight effect on the map layout in the edges where you are able to cross the map. The difference is the linking of objects like mountains and lakes from one side to the other.
      [*]The first map is Flat, the second is Cylindrical and the third is Toroidal.
    Spoiler :



     
  5. Mortac

    Mortac Warlord

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2006
    Messages:
    172
    Location:
    Karlskrona, Sweden


    #20 Ice Age

    Available Settings: Sealevel, Landmass Type

    Ice Age maps can be generated with a large variety of land masses, but the climate remains cold and the terrain will reflect this.


    Used settings:
    Landmass Type: Wide Continents

    • [*]First up are Wide Continents.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Landmass Type: Narrow Continents

    • [*]Now for the Narrow Continents.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Landmass Type: Islands

    • [*]Now the Islands.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Sealevel: 1) Low 2) Medium 3) High
    Landmass Type: Small Islands


    • [*]And last are the Small Islands.
      [*]Any map with a Small Islands Landmass Type will look very similar each time they are generated, and Sealevel has a higher impact on archipelago type maps. Therefore, we will look at different Sealevels instead of creating several maps of the same kind.
    Spoiler :






    #21 Oasis

    Available Settings: World Wrap, Resources

    This map is rich in desert and jungle, where the deserts are full of oases. The north will have an ocean.

    Used settings:
    World Wrap: Cylindrical

    Spoiler :






    #22 Rainforest

    Available Settings: World Wrap

    This map contains mainly of jungle, but also some large spots of desert and clusters of mountain peaks. Lakes will also be present.


    Used settings:
    World Wrap: Cylindrical

    • [*]These maps are not very configurable, and different World Wrap settings will only have a marginal effect on the edges of the map. We will still use different World Wrap settings for each map just for the sake of not rendering them with the same settings.
      [*]The first map has Flat World Wrap, the second has Cylindrical and the third has Toroidal.
    Spoiler :






    #23 Fantasy Realm

    Available Settings: Sealevel, Resource Appearance, World Wrap

    Fantasy Realm maps will generate one continent spanning the whole map. The terrain will be very mixed with grassland, plains, tundra and arctic all mixed together from plot to plot. Lakes will be present around the map.

    There are three levels of Resource Appearance:
    Logical will have normal resource appearance.
    Irrational will cause resources to appear in irrational places, such as rice in the snow and deer in the desert.
    Crazy will add lots and lots of resources all over the map.


    Used settings:
    Sealevel: 1) Low 2) Medium 3) High
    World Wrap: Cylindrical


    • [*]The first map shows Low Sealevel, the second shows Medium Sealevel and the third map shows High Sealevel.
    Spoiler :






    #24 Islands

    Available Settings: Climate, Sealevel, Number of Large Islands, Number of Tiny Islands, World Wrap, Resources

    A Toroidal or Flat setting will have no impact on the layout of the map.

    Fewer islands will give slightly larger islands.


    Used settings:
    Number of Large Islands: 1 Per Player
    Number of Tiny Islands: No Tiny Islands
    World Wrap: Cylindrical
    Total Number of Players: 6/11/18


    • [*]We will begin by checking maps without any fancy settings to see the difference the amount of players will make.
      [*]The first map has a total of 6 players, the second has 11 players and the third has 18 players.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Number of Large Islands: Extras
    Number of Tiny Islands: No Tiny Islands
    World Wrap: Cylindrical
    Total Number of Players: 6/11/18


    • [*]Now to see the difference with Number of Large Islands set to Extras.
      [*]The first map has a total of 6 players, the second has 11 players and the third has 18 players.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Number of Large Islands: Several Extras
    Number of Tiny Islands: No Tiny Islands
    World Wrap: Cylindrical
    Total Number of Players: 6/11/18


    • [*]Now to see the difference with Number of Large Islands set to Several Extras.
      [*]The first map has a total of 6 players, the second has 11 players and the third has 18 players.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Number of Large Islands: Extras
    Number of Tiny Islands: 1) Few 2) Various 3) Many
    World Wrap: Cylindrical
    Total Number of Players: 11


    • [*]Now we will check what the Number of Tiny Islands setting will do. As you will notice, the otherwise empty oceans will now be filled with very small islands.
      [*]The Number of Tiny Islands on the first map is set to Few, the second is set to Various and the third is set to Many.
    Spoiler :






    #25 Donut

    Available Settings: Center Region, Jungle, World Wrap, Resources

    Center Region has the following settings available: Hills/Peaks/Desert/Ocean/Standard. If you choose Standard, the centre will look like the rest of the donut, containing jungle (if turned on) and grassland.

    BE WARNED: When creating Donut maps, if you select No Jungle AND a Center Region other than Desert, there will be no oil generated on the map, not even in the oceans. The only way to prevent this from happening with such settings is to put Resources to Balanced.


    Used settings:
    Jungle: Jungle
    Center Region: 1) Peaks 2) Ocean 3) Standard
    World Wrap: Flat


    • [*]The Center Region of the first map is set to Peaks, the second to Ocean and the third to Standard.
    Spoiler :






    #26 Team Battleground

    Available Settings: Climate, Team Placement, Team Setting, World Wrap

    Team Battleground will always generate:
    Water in the middle with a Team Placement of Left vs Right.
    Desert in the middle with a Team Placement of Top vs Bottom.
    Water in between the corners with a bridge in the middle with a Team Placement of Four Corners.


    Used settings:
    World Wrap: Flat
    Team Placement: Left vs Right


    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    World Wrap: Flat
    Team Placement: 1) Top vs Bottom 2) Four Corners


    • [*]The Team Placement of the first map is Top vs Bottom and the second map is set to Four Corners.
    Spoiler :






    #27 Mirror

    Available Settings: Climate, Mirror Type, Team Setting, Landmass Type, World Wrap

    Mirror is perfect for balanced multiplayer maps, where one side will be a copy of the other. Mirror Type will decide in which way they will be mirrored.


    Used settings:
    Mirror Type: Reflection
    Team Setting: Start Together
    Landmass Type: 1) Tiny Islands 2) Archipelago 3) Snaky Continents
    World Wrap: Flat


    • [*]First we will check the Landmass Types.
      [*]The first map shows Tiny Islands, the second map shows Archipelago and the third map shows Snaky Continents.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Mirror Type: Reflection
    Team Setting: Start Together
    Landmass Type: 1) Wide Continents 2) Small Lakes 3) Varied
    World Wrap: Flat


    • [*]...and we continue with the next three Landmass Types.
      [*]The first map shows Wide Continents, the second map shows Small Lakes and the third map shows Varied.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Mirror Type: 1) Inversion 2) Copy 3) Opposite
    Team Setting: Start Together
    Landmass Type: Varied
    World Wrap: Flat


    • [*]Now we will look at the different Mirror Types on a Varied Landmass Type.
      [*]The first map shows Inversion, the second map shows Copy and the third map shows Opposite.
    Spoiler :






    #28 Maze

    Available Settings: Climate, Maze Width, World Wrap, Resources

    No description needed for this one!


    Used settings:
    Maze Width: 1) 1 Plot Wide 2) 3 Plots Wide 3) 5 Plots Wide
    World Wrap: Cylindrical


    • [*]Maze Width in the first map is 1 Plot, the second map is set to 3 Plots and the third map is set to 5 Plots.
    Spoiler :






    #29 Hub

    Available Settings: Climate, Sealevel, Areas Per Player, Land Shape, Neutral Territory, Isthmus Width, World Wrap, Resources

    Isthmus Width determines how many plots wide the bridges should be.
    Areas Per Player determines the amount of islands.
    Land Shape determines how compact the terrain will be.


    Used settings:
    Areas Per Player: 1
    Land Shape: Pressed
    Neutral Territory: Varied
    Isthmus Width: 2 Plots Wide
    World Wrap: Flat


    • [*]The first map has 6 players, the second has 12 players and the third map has 18 players.
    Spoiler :



     
  6. Mortac

    Mortac Warlord

    Joined:
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    #30 Ring

    Available Settings: Climate, Sealevel, Areas Per Player, Land Shape, Neutral Territory, Isthmus Width, World Wrap, Resources

    Isthmus Width determines how many plots wide the bridges between islands should be.
    Areas Per Player determines the amount of islands.
    Land Shape determines how compact the terrain will be.


    Used settings:
    Areas Per Player: 1 Per Player
    Land Shape: 1) Natural 2) Pressed 3) Solid
    Neutral Territory: 1) Natural 2) Pressed 3) Varied
    Isthmus Width: 2
    World Wrap: Flat
    Total Amount of Players: 10


    • [*]The first map shows Land Shape/Neutral Territory as Natural/Natural, the second shows Pressed/Pressed and the third shows Solid/Varied.
    Spoiler :






    #31 Wheel

    Available Settings: Climate, Sealevel, Areas Per Player, Land Shape, Ring Width, Spoke Width, World Wrap, Resources

    Ring Width: This will determine the width of the bridges between the islands.
    Spoke Width: This will determine the width of the bridges between the islands and the center region.
    Land Shape: This will determine how compact the terrain will be.


    Used settings:
    Areas Per Player: 1 Per Player
    Land Shape: Pressed
    Ring Width: 2
    Spoke Width: 2
    World Wrap: Flat


    • [*]The first map has a total of 6 players, the second has 12 players and the third has 18 players.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Areas Per Player: 2 Per Player (Max 10)
    Land Shape: Pressed
    Ring Width: 2
    Spoke Width: 2
    World Wrap: Flat


    • [*]The first map has a total of 4 players, the second has 7 players and the third has 10 players.
    Spoiler :






    #32 Earth2

    Available Settings: Climate, Sealevel


    Used settings:
    Climate: 1) Temperate 2) Rocky 3) Cold

    • [*]The first map shows Temperate Climate, the second shows Rocky and the third shows Cold.
    Spoiler :






    #33 Tectonics

    Available Settings: Landmass Type, Aridity Level

    The No ice setting appears to use Wet Aridity Level. No ice will still keep the icy borders to the north and south, but no habitable terrain with snow will exist.


    Used settings:
    Landmass Type: Earthlike (70% water)
    Aridity Level: 1) Arid 2) Normal 3) Wet 4) No ice


    • [*]The first map shows Arid Climate, the second shows Normal, the third shows Wet and the fourth shows No ice.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Landmass Type: 60% Water
    Aridity Level: 1) Arid 2) Normal 3) Wet 4) No ice


    • [*]The first map shows Arid Climate, the second shows Normal, the third shows Wet and the fourth shows No ice.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Landmass Type: Lakes (30% water)
    Aridity Level: 1) Arid 2) Normal 3) Wet 4) No ice


    • [*]The first map shows Arid Climate, the second shows Normal, the third shows Wet and the fourth shows No ice.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Landmass Type: Islands
    Aridity Level: 1) Arid 2) Normal 3) Wet 4) No ice


    • [*]The first map shows Arid Climate, the second shows Normal, the third shows Wet and the fourth shows No ice.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Landmass Type: Mediterranean

    Since there is no ice with this Landmass Type, the No ice setting will have no effect and will act similar to Wet Aridity Level.

    Aridity Level: 1) Arid 2) Normal 3) Wet 4) No ice

    • [*]The first map shows Arid Climate, the second shows Normal, the third shows Wet and the fourth shows No ice.
    Spoiler :



    Used settings:
    Landmass Type: Pangaea
    Aridity Level: 1) Arid 2) Normal 3) Wet 4) No ice


    • [*]The first map shows Arid Climate, the second shows Normal, the third shows Wet and the fourth shows No ice.
    Spoiler :

     
  7. Mortac

    Mortac Warlord

    Joined:
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    Location:
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    Map Size Comparison

    Here we will take a look at a few maps with different world sizes and how it affects the rendering of a map.


    Map: Big and Small
    Size: 1) Tiny 2) Standard 3) Huge


    • [*]The first map shows Tiny size, the second shows Standard and the third shows Huge.
    Spoiler :



    Map: Earth2
    Size: 1) Tiny 2) Standard 3) Huge


    • [*]The first map shows Tiny size, the second shows Standard and the third shows Huge.
    Spoiler :



    Map: Hemispheres
    Size: 1) Tiny 2) Standard 3) Huge


    • [*]The first map shows Tiny size, the second shows Standard and the third shows Huge.
    Spoiler :




    Well, there you have it! I hope you enjoyed it and that you now feel more knowledgeable when creating your maps! If you have any suggestions or requests then please let me know!

    Best of luck! :)


     
  8. Mortac

    Mortac Warlord

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    <reserved>
     
  9. weasel77066

    weasel77066 Prince

    Joined:
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    houston tx
    This is really good. Another fine post that is well presented.
    I think these demonstrations youve provided should be on the front page in a category around -War Academy-

    Very usefull for new player who have questions about map types- as there is not much in the way of explanations through civopede or manual.
     
  10. KrikkitTwo

    KrikkitTwo Immortal

    Joined:
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    VERY nice (although it might be nice to have a link to the various map types at the top... when scrolling through them, it's hard to know where you are)
     
  11. Kevin J

    Kevin J Hewer of Wood

    Joined:
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    Very useful. I'd suggest putting spoiler tags around the images to make it easier to navigate.
     
  12. Mortac

    Mortac Warlord

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    Yes, it was indeed a bit hard to navigate. The whole thing became quite a beast in length! Spoiler tags and a quicklinks list have been added to make it a little easier to browse.

    The map types otherwise are not put in alphabetical order because I tried to put the more popular maps up top. The quicklinks list should take care of that potential problem though.
     
  13. Roland Johansen

    Roland Johansen Deity

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    This is a great guide to the various map options, but I feel that this thread shouldn't be in the general Beyond the Sword forum, but in the Strategy Articles forum so that it won't get lost between all the less informative threads in this general forum.

    You could report your own first post in this thread and ask a moderator to move the thread.
     
  14. Methos

    Methos HoF Quattromaster Super Moderator Hall of Fame Staff

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    I agree with Roland on both counts. Excellent article and moved to the correct forum.
     
  15. Mortac

    Mortac Warlord

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    I did send a message about possibly having it moved since I had a hard time placing it. Did not find a suiting category to post it under, as I didn't really find it to be "strategy", but this works. :goodjob:
     
  16. LlamaCat

    LlamaCat Emperor

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    Hey this is a really good maps guide, thanks.

    One thing I wanted to point out which I think is an important point when choosing sea levels... the idea of low vs. high sea level is also that you generate more coast tiles with low sea level, so that means you can have earlier access to other continents or land masses with galleys. Higher sea level means you have more ocean squares near the coastlines and therefore are more isolated for traveling or trade until optics and/or astronomy is discovered.
     
  17. tycoonist

    tycoonist Deity

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    very useful. thanks
     
  18. Thunderfall

    Thunderfall Administrator Administrator Moderator

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    Keep up the good work, Mrotac! :thumbsup:
     
  19. Indiansmoke

    Indiansmoke Deity

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    Very nice, thank you for all the work you put into this.

    I will now play maps that I never would without this guide!!!
     
  20. jpinard

    jpinard Martian

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    This is so awesome. Thanks!
     

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