# World Tools forest tutorial

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Hi, as requested by Old Bear i'm writing there a small tutorial on how to build forests with world tools.

First of all, obtain your latest copy of World Tools software. This can be achieved by visiting Armaholic.com http://www.armaholic.com/page.php?id=10508.

Start World Tools and click on File->New Project menu, or the first top left icon. World tools can start with or without an background picture. This picture is for FENCE placement tool, so you can easily skip the load of a picture in the first screen, if you want to place forests.

We suppose your map is 10240x10240 meters in this example, so select a "preview bitmap size" of 5120 (Note that only multiples of 512 can be used on background pictures, if used, with a 5120 limit).

At this point check the multiplier. With a 2x multiplier we have a 5120x2 = 10240 final world size. That is what we need.

For a 20480x20480 the multiplier is... yes, true. 4

Click on Apply to start. The red button on bottom right becomes green and in the status bar on bottom left you can read your world size.

Click on the green tree on the icon menu.

At this point we need a mask image. Mask image is a background image in false colours that will drive world tools through the placement of the objects.

In MM2 user must use a 3 colors map (red, green, blue) and can select only one object type per color.

In world tools you can use images with 256 colors max, and assign MULTIPLE objects to each color, following some rules.

Now click on ANALYZE IMAGE to let world tools understand you gave it a Jackson Pollock paint.

World tools will show you all the colors used by Pollock to draw this mask image.

We focus on green color, for this example:

you can read, on green row:

Color[A=255, R=20, G=213, B=20]: this is the green color identification. If you have some green color variations you can easily identify those colors by their A-RGB color, or by clicking on a spot on the map.

[0%]: this is the probability for AN OBJECT to be placed in this color. 0% means NO WAY to have something placed on the green color (and the row color is grayed)

(10,29% of total): this is the amount of THIS color on the map. Sometimes you can have 2 gradations of color on the mask, very similar, made by paint software approximations and painting tools. This indicator show you what is the color that you can ignore due his lower presence in the mask.

Well... click on the green color row, if not already did, and you can notice a "placement probability" slider on top center of the window. This is the PROBABILITY that one object could appear on a GREEN pixel. 10% means you have 10% probability on each green pixel of the map to have something place on it.

BEWARE: Don't play so high with this slider... a 3-4% probability is a lot, even it seems too low.

Now, set the slider to 2% (you can finetune with right-left arrows on your keyboard). If done the row turn to black.

But... what will appear on this color? actually nothing... Click on SIMULATION button and you can see... nothing. And this is correct, we didn't assigned any object there.

Right click on the green row, and set "ADD OBJECT TYPE"

I've pre-loaded a big amount of default arma2 objects and some objects from Berghoff tree's project. If objects are not in this list you can easily ADD THEM by clicking on the 3-box icon on the top menu bar. Follow instructions to do this, as it is outside of our tutorial needs.

If you can't find your needed objects on this list (OA plants aren't mapped, but if you plan to add them export your object configuration file and send it to me, to be added in the next release, this will save me a lot of work, to be used on other more useful project parts) or if you have renamed objects in your Visitor 3 artificial/natural object list you can add them by writing their name into "custom object" tab.

Assuming you're standard, select "TREES" on the first drop down menu, and select the t_salix2s tree type.

At this point give it a placement probability moving the slider to the right. 0-100 probability could be used and will explained below. Set 20% (+-)

Now repeat the above operations selecting a t_pinuss2f object, with 80% probability

Now we have 2 objects below the green color, with some percentages (can be changed by click on the object and moving the slider in the top center of the screen:

Now the final explanation. READ ACCURATELY:

There is a probability for a COLOR to have an object on it. This is defined by the COLOR percentage, set on the color itself.

This percentage tells the program how to determine if an OBJECT will be placed. If the roll dice is successfully catching the color percentage AN OBJECT will be placed there.

WHAT OBJECT? the percentages of the 2 objects defined in the color definition tells the mix of objects that will be (randomly) placed on the color, IF the color percentage is match.

So world tools, if decides to place an object, will try to determine what kind of object based on the required object distribution. if object percentages sum is > 100% or less than 100% those percentages will be RESCALED to 100%

In this example, on 2% of green pixel there will be an object placed, that will be a salix in the 20% of attempts, and a pinus in the 80%.

If you have a very small mask image, compared with the world size each pixel represent a very large square on the map. square size is shown on the bottom of the forest window: in this case 20x20 meters each pixel.

If you increase percentages you will cover MORE green pixels, but you can have, for each 20x20 square, only ONE object. If pixel size is 40x40 (for a 512 mask on a 20km map) one object every 40 meters is too sparse, even if you raise color probability to 100% (each square will have an object, but squares are too big).

In this case, select the green color row and you can notice, on top of the forest window, a MAXIMUM OBJ PER PIXEL. Increasing this number you can place MORE THAN 1 object on each green pixel of the mask. those objects are still subject to the 2% appearance probability.

The randomixe obj number flag tells the program that, before attempt to placing the 5 object you select on the box as maximum, it will randomize the pixel under evaluation and attempts to place a variable number from 1 to 5 on this pixel, instead of 5 objects attempts (still with 2% placement probability set on green color).

All those parameters will help you creating a very realistic and randomly sparsed forest on your map.

If you click on SIMULATION button you can obtain an evaluation of the objects that will be created, without waiting for the CREATE! function that will creates objects for you on the final istance.

Right of the green tree on the top menu bar you can see a green card. This is the export function to Visitor 3 importable format (how this works is covered on World Tools online help on About->Help menu)

Finally: If you use world tools on your map a small note on your readme map file will be a nice satisfaction for me :)

Hope this helps

Edited by shezan74

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Thank you very much for these explanations, and congratulations for your work.

It's a very nice tool which, in my opinion, will serve very long.

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wwooo, thanks shezan.

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Is the tutorial complete now or are you still going to add text to it?

Finally: If you use world tools on your map a small note on your readme map file will be a nice satisfaction for me

Yeah you wish, take a guess how many OFP islands were made with WrpTool and no mentioning in the readme... all I'm saying is, don't get your hopes up for such crediting.

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Is the tutorial complete now or are you still going to add text to it?

Yeah you wish, take a guess how many OFP islands were made with WrpTool and no mentioning in the readme... all I'm saying is, don't get your hopes up for such crediting.

Tutorial is complete on Forest Generation base features.

There is also a remap function to remap existing forests and a bitmap exportation tool to have tree positions for post-production works. Those 2 features are covered by online manual.

In the next days i will try to wrote a script/fence manual or, maybe, a youtube video :)

About credits... i need 5 seconds to see if a vegetation has been placed using world tools or by hand/randomobjectplacer/maskmapper...

Forest variation and mix that world tools make in some seconds could be achieved only with several hours of hand placement or extensive use of masks on maskmapper.

So, by watching a map, i can be 90% sure of method used.

This is a nice satisfaction too ;)

By the way... all my maps are made with World Tools. On Fallujah map this software saved me near 100 hours of hand work, letting me dedicate on something more important. Same on Spritz Island.

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I'm not a maker..but these make me want to jump in a give it a shot!! Nice work!!

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Can you make islands with just this program or do you need visitor aswell?

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Can you make islands with just this program or do you need visitor aswell?

Vistor3 remains a necessary evil.

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Thx a lot for that tool, although i am just doin my first steps in visitor (and still think WRP tool in OFP was very luxurios compared to V3), i can survey the time spare due that tool.

Idirectly gave it a try,everything worked fine up to the moment i treid to export to a visitpo format.

The summary opens, with nothing in there.

When i click simulation i can see my 3 different trees in their counts.

What is running wrong here?

Btw. for testing i used your example mask and just used the green colour.

All remaining colours were left without objects.

Furthermore i receive several times the "error" my map would contain too much colours.(it is black and white), do i have to take care awhile saving the map?

Am using photoshop.

If the import then works correct (just red and black map)i get a long list of different red tone colours.

See that example

I am sure i am using "wrong colour mode" or sth like that....

Edited by Nephris1

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Idirectly gave it a try,everything worked fine up to the moment i treid to export to a visitpo format. The summary opens, with nothing in there.

When i click simulation i can see my 3 different trees in their counts.

What is running wrong here?

Simulation doesn't actually create nothing. Just simulates the final numbers.

The objects will be generated on "Create" button press.

Furthermore i receive several times the "error" my map would contain too much colours.(it is black and white), do i have to take care awhile saving the map?

To help reducing the list of found colors on the image the maximum colors allowable for mask map is 256. By the way you have a black/white mask map or you're trying to use the heightmap as mask map?

Am using photoshop.

If the import then works correct (just red and black map)i get a long list of different red tone colours.

See that example

I am sure i am using "wrong colour mode" or sth like that....

As far as i can see on the left column the various color percentages are all near 0,03% of the whole image.

That means you've used a full color indexed image with a paint tool that doesn't write in a single color but with a full soft range of colors at the line edges. That goes into a wide range of colors on your final map.

You can save "for web" in GIF format and reduce color count or use the "posterize" function but it's better to use PENCIL tool instead of brush when creating the image.

Small colors still on the map with small percentages could be ignored, but doesn't help you to have a clear view of your mask

Best

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After i am now finally able to manage visitor3 in tat kind, that i am almostr able to set a few objects and get deeper into how things actually work...thx to a lot forum member....i must say big thx for that tool!

Very comfortable and time sparing tool.

Thx Shezan!:)

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Hi Shezan.

I need some help on the remap part. Where can I find this?

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The remap function is pretty clever... and not limited to vegetation, by the way - you can be pretty cunning with it and save lots of time in various contexts...

Basically you can "thin density" or "remap entirely"... here's a picture...

OK... you can see that I've used the "Import" button, and loaded in a file I previously exported from Visitor... it's actually the positions of all occurrences of the Small Spruce" pine tree on one of my islands - though that's not important here...

Suppose I'd decided that my forests were too dense - too many trees dragging down FPS... I figure I could get away with about 80% of my current tree density... this is a common problem you'll find when testing terrains, so a quick means of "thinning" the trees would be handy... This is exactly what that "Reduce object amount" control at the bottom right does...

So - I'd load my exported forests - change that percentage control to 80% - then re-export back out of WorldTools...

That would give me an import file containing all my original trees - in their original positions... but a few would be missing here and there... for the rest - no change...

Handy and clever... but.... look at the picture again - what's this "wall_woodvil_pole" and "indpipe1_20m" stuff?

That's an extreme example of remapping!...

If I were to click the "Remap" button on the bottom left, and import the resulting file into Visitor - all my pine trees would be replaced by village walls and industrial piping - in the proportions you see - 75%/25% !

Now of course that would look silly - I'd more likely want to maybe remap those trees to maybe a random selection of three different bushes instead, or maybe some sort of bush, treestump, fallen branch combo... whatever...

To add a "remap object" - right click where it says "Selected Objects", then choose the new item you want those "positions" mapped to from the WorldTools library, also choose the percentage amount, then when you click "OK" you'll see the item on the list - just like my village wall and pipes...

So that's basically how remap works - you could import the positions of all your "pine" trees and maybe remap them to a proportional selection of "oak" trees instead...

But - let's think about that for just another moment...

We can remap - anything - to anything! that could be very very handy indeed...

Lets suppose I've created a forest on my terrain... it's pretty much all the one same big tall pine tree... around the edges I'd like a "forest fringe" of smaller assorted trees and bushes...

I could select a tree type from the Visitor list - go around clicking them into place - change to a different smaller tree - click lots of them - change to a bush, click lots of them too...

or - I could pick some model I have in the list that I'd never actually use on my terrain - an "armchair" or a "bathtub"

Without having to fool around changing models all the time it's a lot faster and easier to just work your way around the forest - placing bathtubs!

Then - "export all bathtubs" - load the file into WorldTools and "remap" bathtub positions to a nice selection of little trees and shrubs...

Export that and, after "removing all" bathtubs from your terrain - import your random forest fringe mix of vegetation... if it's not what you expected - remap and remix in WT again and see how it looks with a different mix...

Basically you can use the exported position of any selection of objects to remap to any other selection of objects...

Very clever...

Have fun!

B

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Just what I needed. Thank you! What the arma map making community wouldnt be without you! :O Now I just need to add AO trees to world tools. How the....

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Theres a "WorldTools OA Veg Definitions" file in the Resources & Tutorials section of my wee website...

Just load it into WT and it'll add all the OA Trees & Bushes to your WT library - with pictures...

B

:notworthy:

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Just what I needed. Thank you!

Thanks to Shezan74 - he made WorldTools in the first place!

The "bathtub" trick is his too, by the way...

There's one slight drawback to all this import/export happiness - it's a shortcoming of Visitor, rather than of WorldTools, of course...

When you set up "Natural Objects" in Visitor and load all your trees ready for use, you'll see theres several "randomise" parameters you can set - size being the most important of course... nothing worse than a forest of identical sized trees - especially if theyre all at the same angle of rotation and tilt too...

Obviously, for natural objects such as trees you'll want some +/- variation in size, maybe a +/- 1 degree angle, and the full +/- 180 degree roatation to ensure some variety in the trees you place...

The problem is - not all of that information is included in the export file!

So - if you were to export a whole forest of "pinus1s", then immediately import - they'd all be the correct tree - that information is in the export file, but heights aren't! - you might get a tall tree where a small one was before, etc...

In practise this isn't usually a problem, mostly you'll be doing this sort of thing on large bulk forest areas - the trees were randomly sized anyway when you placed them at first - they'll just be re-randomsized when you re-import, still within the +/- limits you set anyway... but it's worth being aware of...

B

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Thanks to Shezan74 - he made WorldTools in the first place!

And to the best sponsor in the ArmA2 world, Mr. B ;)

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Is there any reason that, when hitting simulation, it gives me an object count but then when I hit create it takes some time and then pops up with the summary window but it is empty and only allows me to hit the red button?

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Jakerod i had that mate when you right click on add object of the chosen colour there is a window that shows you need to up the ratio so if its 1 then move to 3-4 and then do the slider for percentage of trees and simulate then you will see the amount generated took me 3 days to work that out

on the first page it is not showing in that image but it pops up next to analise image button

Edited by SmokeDog3PARA

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Jakerod i had that mate when you right click on add object of the chosen colour there is a window that shows you need to up the ratio so if its 1 then move to 3-4 and then do the slider for percentage of trees and simulate then you will see the amount generated took me 3 days to work that out

on the first page it is not showing in that image but it pops up next to analise image button

I tried upping one of them to 100% and with one object covering it all and that didn't work. I just tried that one single color. Is that kind of what you meant? I'm just going to try reanalyzing it and see how that goes.

Things I just did differently that got it to work:

I don't know if I had a background image loaded on the last project or not so I loaded one up.

I only did one color this time we will see if another one works when I have more time though.

Edited by Jakerod

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I'm assuming this tutorial is now 2 years old and I can't see the example images anymore which brings me into some confusion, cause i don't know how the mask should look like now, I dont even know if I should take the mask of the island and paint colors on it and then import and somehow identify the colors with the objects or paint colors on white or black background, It would be so nice to see finally a complete tutorial, is there someone who could help me? :/

I'd like to put weed and grass plants all over my map and add trees randomly but only on areas i want trees to be. I'd be happy about any support. I just opened the program and i dont even have an idea what to do.

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I'm assuming this tutorial is now 2 years old and I can't see the example images anymore which brings me into some confusion, cause i don't know how the mask should look like now, I dont even know if I should take the mask of the island and paint colors on it and then import and somehow identify the colors with the objects or paint colors on white or black background, It would be so nice to see finally a complete tutorial, is there someone who could help me? :/

I'd like to put weed and grass plants all over my map and add trees randomly but only on areas i want trees to be. I'd be happy about any support. I just opened the program and i dont even have an idea what to do.

I don't have time to do an entire tutorial right now but this might help. I always do mine with colors on black background. Max image size is 5120 and then you can multiply it using the world multiplier when you load your background image. You don't have to use all the colors in one go either or even do all the colors at all. The black background does show up as an option but I just leave it empty so that nothing appears in it. I normally do forests, export it and then import it into visitor. Check and make sure it's okay and then if I need to do something else I do it separately. I save between each step so that if I don't like something I can revert and do it over again.

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I need some help trying to use world tools. My island is 8192x8192. It's 1024x8 meter cells.

I'm not really sure what bitmap size and multiplier to use.

But no matter what I choose when I import any mask, select some trees, generate a Forrest then export to visitor. Visitor says objects rejected. What am I going wrong here?

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it's not anything to do with world tools, the problem is that Visitor needs to know the correct path to the object files...

STEP 1 go into world tools and open the 'object managment' window, then find one of the objects used in your forests it will say something like "Trees->Pine(Export item name: ca\plants2\tree\t_pinuss2f)"

now you need the export name, the "ca\plants2\tree\t_pinuss2f" bit

STEP 2 have your terrain open in V3, and open the tools--nature objects dialogue box and then scroll down to find your object, in the example it would be t_pinuss2f. Click on it in the list and it will populate the boxes underneath with values, text, options etc, the bit you need to deal with it "Name:". change that bit to "ca\plants2\tree\t_pinuss2f" and then click on "OK" (this is important, if you do not click "OK" it will not apply the changes!)

STEP 3 repeat steps 1 and 2 for all of your objects, then import again and it should work perfectly...

Hope that helps

D

Edited by daringd