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Rhaonoa

What are things you'd like to see in a Terrain?

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We all have an opinion, our requests... And our wishes! Here's the time to share them!

 

I'm working on a Terrain, and I've been making a few cities, farms, military bases, factories... Etc. But I wonder, what are things people would also like to see implemented in a map? Big urban CQC areas? Ghost towns? Open fields? And so on.

 

What are things you like seeing, or wanna see more of when it comes to a map? Things you'd like to see being done differently? Things you've never seen? Or even things you really don't like! Everything is valid.

 

I'm sure I'll learn a lot myself and so will other terrain makers in the hunt for ideas and what people want!

Cheers.

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I appreciate anyone who devotes so much time and effort to bringing terrains to my favourite game. I do however have a few things I dislike in a terrain: 1) recycled A2 vegetation assets which totally don't suit A3 lighting, 2) terrains with implausible geographic variation eg snowy mountains -> jungle -> desert -> temperate within 5km  and 3) terrains in the middle of nowhere that all of a sudden have a bloody industrial area. 

 

The one thing that really impresses me on a terrain is fresh water. Running rivers and creeks, small and large ponds, puddles on muddy roads etc. This is so sorely lacking on all official A3 maps. The thing that I'd love to see most of all is unique Australian vegetation, especially Eucalyptus and smaller shrubs like Banksias and Grevillias. An Australian temperate bushland map with running water would be my dream come true.  

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27 minutes ago, tpw said:

Running rivers and creeks, small and large ponds, puddles on muddy roads etc. This is so sorely lacking on all official A3 maps. The thing that I'd love to see most of all is unique Australian vegetation, especially Eucalyptus and smaller shrubs like Banksias and Grevillias. An Australian temperate bushland map with running water would be my dream come true.  

the issue lies with the fact that running waters is something that cannot actually be done in this engine, so it needs to be faked 

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In my opinion the most useful terrain ever made for the series was Opteryx' Avgani;

 

1. Highly topical (still) as it could be used to represent ME conflicts from Gulf War 1 (and before) until today,

2. Although it was quite challenging to run in the day an urban area of that size need not be an outright frame-killer.

3. Town was not so vast that a play session with a typical number of units couldn't clear the whole area in a reasonable time frame.

4. Interesting and varied approaches from each direction.

5. Limited overwatch on the central AO (can't just plink away from the safety of a hilltop).

6. A naturally featureless geographic setting with a well matched satout (meaning approach/support from the air doesn't have to encounter the jarring moment where the map-proper starts).

7. Very authentic.

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3 minutes ago, PuFu said:

the issue lies with the fact that running waters is something that cannot actually be done in this engine, so it needs to be faked 

Agreed, but even faked is better than eternally dry terrains. The new Weferlingen terrains pull off the small river vibe really well.

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Just now, tpw said:

Agreed, but even faked is better than eternally dry terrains. The new Weferlingen terrains pull off the small river vibe really well.

issue in general is in relation with topography of the terrain - having a pretty flat surface terrain where you push inwards the terrain mesh until you find the see level is possible (see PKL for instance). having a mountainous terrain where you have a stream of water going down from top to bottom is not possible. So you are sort of limited to what GM did, or what blud did. There is no way to fake it in the former situation otherwise.
i 100% agree that one thing this engine does poorly is "wetness" in general. It all feels a bit dry.

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1 hour ago, Rhaonoa said:

 Ghost towns?

 

Of course it depends on the setting, but for me, terrains should be either ghost towns or fully fledged, living cities with furnitures (very much like what we had in Arma 2 with furniture proxies).

 

The "in-between" terrains always feel a bit weird - it's actually my only gripe with Weferlingen : the environment is very clean but completely empty. It doesn't feel like a ghost town/area, but it doesn't feel natural either, unless you dedicate time and ressources to populate the map in a decent way.

 

In that regard, Fallujah, Chernarus, Takistan etc are very good terrains. Pecher, PKL, Tchernobyl work well too. Altis almost feels like a derelict terrain.

Tanoa, Malden, Weferlingen, not so much.

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Ambient Birds by default.....then i can retire!

 

Anything that can help bring a map to life as soon as i open it in Eden, little fine details like ambient noise from air conditioning units, sub-stations, generators etc.

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strategic sites that are thoughtfully placed and nice to fight in and around, terrain elevation variation that is organic and beneficial to gameplay. I also like there to be a good balance between playability for armor and for infantry, open spaces for the tanks, but also areas where the infantry don't have to be completely wide open.

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7 hours ago, PuFu said:

issue in general is in relation with topography of the terrain - having a pretty flat surface terrain where you push inwards the terrain mesh until you find the see level is possible (see PKL for instance). having a mountainous terrain where you have a stream of water going down from top to bottom is not possible. So you are sort of limited to what GM did, or what blud did. There is no way to fake it in the former situation otherwise.
i 100% agree that one thing this engine does poorly is "wetness" in general. It all feels a bit dry.

 

Pufu can scream this from the rooftops. I share the enthusiasm for fresh water features but it´s very hard to pull off in Arma.

Here are some examples to illustrate the issue perhaps better than can be explained in words (to people that have never opened Terrain Builder)

 

There are few areas where using sea level water to create rivers is feasible without significantly altering the overall terrain topography. To give a few examples, river deltas into the sea are reasonably easy to do since they are obviously still very close to water level and generally have slight elevation changes over long distances (Here / Korean DMZ river delta). Similarily, rivers in flatlands can also be somewhat faithfully be recreated without looking completely out of place (Here / North Germany flatlands) as long as you have enough space (a few dozen to hundreds of meters to either side) in the terrain to make it appear as if you have a somewhat smooth riverbank. As you might notice, the things described here only work on very flat terrains. Now keep in mind that most players are understandibly not very fond of terrains that are very flat for kilometers since they restrict or completely deny certain playstyles and can be perceived as boring as a consequence.

 

So where do you run into bigger issues? Terrains that have even a moderate degree of topographic variation (Here / Korean DMZ further inland) which causes rivers that should have nice, gradual riverbanks to evolve into canyons. Sometimes that can be hidden by embracing the canyons (it´s a feature, not a bug!), but that is basically impossible in terrains with more than moderate topograhic variation since you would end up with absolutely ridiculous cliffs.

 

GM´s new river and pond objects might be a remedy for this to some degree, but I wouldn´t expect to get great results with rivers that lose a decent amount of elevation over a certain distance either.

 

Bottom line: Rivers in Arma create a lot of additional work, still behave like oceans since you can´t seperate them in the terrain config and generally create wider reaching problems for the terrain topography overall.

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The reason water areas are so sought after is they can really sear into your long term memory something like they call 'Presence' in virtual reality terms -the feeling that you really are somewhere. I felt it for a few moments playing on an Unsung map last night on a riverboat with really high trees -felt unique -the problem is things in Arma tend to get samey after a while so the feeling diminishes. Like i still remember the water Dam area in Chernarus from Arma 2 even though havent played that map in years.

 

Distinct changes in elevation like rockface, glades with unique foliage in the middle of forests and of course....

 

 

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I would really like to see canyons, like insane deep, to dogfight ala independence day

Canyons_wallpapers_4.jpg

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A good 20x20 terrain depicting RC East Afghanistan. Sensible spots for villages with detailed FOB's and COP's and impressive mountain ranges that are not just the normal bare sand hills. Basically Lythium 2.woah but based on RC East rather than RC West.

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I look for well-executed geo-typical terrains that really capture the feel of a specific landscape. Bohemia Interactive have absolutely nailed this with places like Chernarus and Altis. I don't want to belittle anyone's hard work, but I cringe at the terrains that don't use somewhere real as a base at least - they just don't look real and that breaks any immersion for me. Same goes for anywhere that has had the scale played with too much.

 

Make a map that makes players respond to it in a natural way and that gives mission makers spaces to put temporary objectives, like landing zones/ secret camps away from towns/villages. I think often map makers think you have to create towns/installations in every part of the map, or create really large, complex towns/ military installations when small ones can be just as interesting. Just stick to what the map gives you and complete that. If you then want to do another terrain with another feature, do that rather than trying to make one map all things to all people. Rivers are great as they can be obstacles or aids to movement, but are hard to pull off convincingly, especially in Arma as others have said above.

 

Do look in streetmap of places to get an idea how they would be laid out.
Do use rocks the same colour as the sat map/ ground textures.

Do look at the bedding of the geology in photos/ google streetmap and use that as a guide when placing the large cliff/ rock objects.
Do make the places looked lived in and have history. Villages and towns aren't just a grid of roads with houses in the gaps, they've been added to, changed, destroyed, rebuilt over time.

Do use the sat map to get the placing of the buildings feel right, and use small objects sparingly so mission creators can fill them.
 

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Grass in towns should be short. Too many towns on user made maps look like Chernobyl with knee high to waist high grass every where. Also, grass on soccer fields should be very short. Additionally, if a farm field looks plowed from above in an aircraft, it should be bare when you are on foot there. Way too many plowed fields on community maps when you get close have knee high or taller grass on them. Finally grass looks awful underwater and doesn't belong on the ocean floor.

 

Another thing I look for in maps that is rare, is actual wilderness areas. There are many maps that are are just way too settled. A base game example of this is Tanoa. Tanoa has great looking jungles, however in any of them if you walk in a straight line in any direction you'll hit a road, path, settlement, or edge of the jungle in less than a Km. It seems like the majority of maps are just too crowded.

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What i think alot of terrains which are based on reallife data are missing is gameplay-ability. They are made as close to real life as possible, but for the sake of gameplay, arma requires smaller towns, many villages and unique features. An airport is something a map shouldnt miss. I would always recommend to stay away from large rock formations, tunnels or anything where Rocks get repetetive and glitchy. Also, AI doesnt like them. IceBreakr made some of the best terrains, looking back to Lingor, towns just as big to be looked at as cities, small enough to be played in. Numbers do count - I have seen countless terrains with 10x10km or 20x20km with 10 towns, those maps are useless for playing arma. I think arma requires maps which feature atleast 40+ villages or towns. Plus farms and such. Islands? Yes! Simply because Islands are way nicer in Arma than having an endless out of map zone. In Weferlingen (new DLC map) Ai can be seen just driving around the map. Also important are ground textures, i think some of the best are of course in vanilla but also in Lingor. Dont make them too bright, too shiny or to detailed, remember, they repeat themselfs. 

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Hello there Rhaonoa !

There are a lot of replies , # everyone's wishes !

 

Definitely something like , the terrain from the Terminator Salvation Movie :

 

Open areas , canyons , forests , lakes ,  mountains , underground passage , City , destructed environment:

eVuYuCU.gif

Spoiler

 

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I agree with tpw. Anything that incorporates lots of water features. Streams, lakes, rivers, ponds, marsh, bays, ports, canals, wetlands, swamps, swamps, and more swamps.

 

Anything that is unique and different. Preferably fictional terrains as they offer the most creativity and flexibility. Fictional terrains also are neutral and can be role-played anywhere. Islands are great as you have unlimited ocean/sea surrounding it.

 

Themed terrains are essential... There should be a REASON we are fighting for it:  Strategic Airfield, Submarine Base, Satellite Relay Station, Ballistic Missile Sites, Industrial Shipping Ports, Uranium Enrichment Plant, Military Railroad and Logistics Hubs, Intelligence & Data Centers, Armour and Munitions Factories, Borders between Countries, etc.

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On ‎5‎/‎9‎/‎2019 at 6:36 AM, Rhaonoa said:

I'm working on a Terrain, and I've been making a few cities, farms, military bases, factories... Etc. But I wonder, what are things people would also like to see implemented in a map? Big urban CQC areas? Ghost towns? Open fields? And so on.

 

What are things you like seeing, or wanna see more of when it comes to a map? Things you'd like to see being done differently? Things you've never seen? Or even things you really don't like! Everything is valid.

 

Fences and walls that aren't broken! Please for the love of all that is holy and innocent someone make an area that doesn't have broken down fences. Especially in areas where the military/government is not blatantly being ridiculous with their citizens. Heck even in areas where the government is a iron ruler the fences are generally in good shape.

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On 5/9/2019 at 11:29 PM, arg_foxtrop1 said:

I would really like to see canyons, like insane deep, to dogfight ala independence day

You mean like this? https://imgur.com/eXqIpiB & https://imgur.com/Gn75Owc (The textures aren't great but it sure was fun to fly down)

 

Quote

Fences and walls that aren't broken! Please for the love of all that is holy and innocent someone make an area that doesn't have broken down fences. Especially in areas where the military/government is not blatantly being ridiculous with their citizens. Heck even in areas where the government is a iron ruler the fences are generally in good shape.

There's a lot of good reasons for doing that. Having all fences be intact creates a lot of "dead space" that no one uses to move through because there's no way out. AI can't vault fences. It's difficult to match real world places with intact fences because you only have so many piece types. For example, if you only have a 2m fence piece you can't make a fence that is 11m long in real life.

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I'd love to see a detailed map set in the Canadian Arctic where two forces fight for control of strategic positions. In particular a facility akin to the Nanisivik Naval Facility

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My top things in terrains are micro terrain. Ditches, uneven ground, sewers next to roads, small bridges etc.

Things to keep you from driving off road and mountains etc placed in such a way that it rewards you for walking around and not play mountain goat simulator.

 

In arma there's usually no reason to not drive straight to where you're going or run through the forest. This is the complete opposite to real life where you simply can't walk any faster than you can crawl through a lot of forest and your vehicle would get stuck/break down off road.

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a small map but  tactical with the new livonia asset a remake of bf 1942 telemark (secret weapons) or peenemunde

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