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Vectif

Bastek - A middle east terrain with Arma 3 assets!

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BASTEK

Hi all. I'm Vectif, I've worked on a few terrains previously (namely Djalka, and Straya), and I'd just like to come here to announce the next project I've begun working on; Bastek. A proof-of-concept terrain of attempting to create middle-eastern themed terrain for Arma 3 using Arma 3 assets. The idea of avoiding the usage of the Arma 2 assets nearly every middle east terrain uses will hopefully make Bastek have it's own style, and a unique one at it. The Arma 2 assets are great and lovely, but too many middle-east terrains look just like Takistan and Zargabad.

So this is welcome, and feel free to join me on my journey of creating this terrain; I'm very excited for this project, and middle-east is one of my favourite themes in maps and videogames. I've been taking the time to research real life imagery and also playing multiple games set in middle-east to try and get as close as I possibly can to something believable and immersive. Not to mention something light in size and also very versatile.

This project is fictional, and it's fully made from scratch. I drew the heightmap in greyscale and curated vanilla A3 objects that would fit the theme, alongside researching real-life images and playing games set in the theme.

CLICK FOR ZOOM OR OPEN SEPARATELY FOR MORE DETAIL.
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Story & Context
Bastek is a fictional terrain, however, a lot of refferences and influences are taken from diverse areas of the world, such as; Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan, Syria, Egypt, and Istanbul. So you may see a lot of variety in this regard as you go from area to area. Bastek is also canonically set in a time of economic and political turmoil. There is a vast difference between the richer and poorer areas, which has caused many riots and fights in the region. There's a lot of ideals in conflict that range from religion to politics and how the wealth should be divided in such regions, however, all this is often overshadowed by the success and beauty of the more popular and developed parts of the region. A once succesful country, now heading towards war. Insurgencies arise, countries begin to show support... and interest... meanwhile private military companies are starting to exploit the grey areas of their contracts.

Technical details
8km size
2m cell size
Expected filesize: under 200MB (this is very subject to change!)
Current object count: 21000 handplaced

Goals
First and foremost, I'd like to finish the terrain and get it out there, I hope this will provide the Arma community with a good and brand new middle eastern terrain, not to mention an unique one. I am putting my all into the design of the layouts and object placement of this terrain to try and make it the best I can both in terms of looks and gameplay. Everywhere I can I will try to place gaps, tactical vantage positions, ladders, stairs, connectors and much more to try and allow the players to be creative when traversing the terrain. I am also interested in adding a custom-lighting setup for Overcast, to tint the skies and overall mood of the terrain in a yellow-ish light, like this.

Hopeful Dreams
Among other things, I would love to release this terrain with things way beyond my current time schedule at the moment. I would love to release this terrain alongside a few missions or even a campaign, but I'm not an excellent writer, however, it's something I'd like to do to make this more special. On top of this, I am a musician, I would maybe like to write and compose an OST for said missions or the terrain if I manage to study the style of arabian / middle-eastern-ish music, and of course, 2000s alternative rock. All in all, I can not promise these things, but they are things I'd like to do. Arma is my favourite videogame and I love the work of both BI and modders, that thanks to their passion, I've had endless and countless hours of fun, enjoyment, and even making friends while playing the things they made, what inspired me into starting to make my own content for Arma 3 was this same notion, I felt it was time to give back to both the game and the community, I hope this passion will show in the end result.

Looking for contributors!
Would you like to help Bastek go the extra mile? These are openings available for that! Feel free to ask me if you'd like to help with something that isn't listed here.

-3D Modellers: I could really use modellers who could help make a building or two for the terrain to help with variety and gameplay opportunities, as such, I'd most likely ask for mosque-like buildings, minarets, unfinished apartment complexes and such. I may even ask you to do a silly easter egg or two! I'd love to have winks and refferences to other things and people that have inspired, not to mention give people a smile here and there.
-Designers: Bastek needs a flag after all! A logo or insignia could do too!
-Writers/Mission makers: Are you interested in building up a possible campaign or mission set that could release with this terrain? I'm all ears!


Support the creator
If you like my work, please consider donating! My computer is very budget and electronics are very expensive where I live, I don't have all the means nor the money to afford better hardware, I would appreciate having a more powerful computer for making more complex terrains in the future, not to mention work in a plethora of other projects I'm passionate about, all the things I make are passion projects of mine that I work on during my free time. Any amount is greatly appreciated and helpful, even just a single dollar is a lot for me. If you like what I do, this would help me a lot.
Ko-fi: https://ko-fi.com/vectif

If you have any ideas, suggestions, refferences, or would like to offer help or support me with anything in specific let me know! Thanks!
-Vectif.

Below in my thread replies you will see the progress of this terrain, from day one to current time as you progress in the timeline.

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Day 3 of total work! I've been doing some basic road layouts for the whole map, plus I also thought I should share a view of what the overall view/shape of the terrain looks like! This is all while assisting my virtual college classes and mechanically working on my terrain in auto-pilot mode 😅
(Kind of how I've done all of my terrain work since 2020, I can point to certain areas of Straya and be like; "Oh, I was in my programming class when I made this area!" lol.)

anyways, without further ado, here's the pictures! They're very WIP and basic (and ignore the aiport runway marker!) but just to give a initial notion of what things are looking like. The main islands with bridge connectors and then the artificial islands at the middle top of the map (inspired by Dubai's Palm Tree Islands). I was planning on adding an atoll in the bottom right but I haven't yet decided upon that. And then an overview of the only city area at the moment. iI've also included Livonia Lighting for the time being until I figure out what to do for the custom lighting I'd like for the terrain. Among other ideas I'd like to have a standalone port of the A2 mosque, maybe to keep as it is or to try and retexture it in a reddish tone, or otherwise a custom building resembling the Haghia Sophia - though I can not guarantee these for the future but they're just wishful thinking. I'll otherwise improvise with in-game assets. I also want to make some areas look extremely commercial, industrial, and wealthy (such as the north with the Palm Tree Islands) while other areas being either regular towns or completely empoverished towns.

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I don't yet have ideas where exactly I'd like some more cities, military bases, airports, towns, military camps/FOBs, and other landmarks to be at, so I'm open for suggestions of that aswell!
Cheers!

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worked on a few more things today! A factory, a military outpost, and a slum town!

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Wow this is looking great! 🙂 

 

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Oh yeah! Dude very cool. If I could suggest something asa landmark it'd be a nice sized pistachio or olive orchard assuming that's not like crazy difficult to pull off. 

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Some more pictures! So far I have not done any surface painting so all of the ground looks the same, but there'll be concrete and grass patches in a lot of these areas. I've also tried to keep in mind having vantage points, lots of ladders and stairs to get up to buildings you normally wouldn't be able to, and trying to also be creative with object placement in general.

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I'm not really a screenshot/scene person... but I think this helps set a bit of the vibe I'm going for! Just having some fun testing the vibe of the terrain so far. The areas in the screenshots are very WIP and not final! Not that you can see much in these anyways 😛

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On 5/3/2021 at 7:01 PM, Rhaonoa said:

-Vectif. (One day the BI forum mods will change my name here.)

 

You can actually do this yourself on the BI Profile page. If isn't working for you, please let a moderator know and we can then get Arma3 Community Manager to get it changed for you.

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2 hours ago, R0adki11 said:

 

You can actually do this yourself on the BI Profile page. If isn't working for you, please let a moderator know and we can then get Arma3 Community Manager to get it changed for you.


Hi, thanks for reaching out. It does not work for me and hasn't for a while, infact my BI profile name displays correctly but it doesn't update on the forum. I've made forum posts here and asked on the Discord to no avail. Would really appreciate it, who can I get in contact with about it?

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3 hours ago, Rhaonoa said:


Hi, thanks for reaching out. It does not work for me and hasn't for a while, infact my BI profile name displays correctly but it doesn't update on the forum. I've made forum posts here and asked on the Discord to no avail. Would really appreciate it, who can I get in contact with about it?

 

If you have changed your BI Profile, you need to logout of the forums and log back in. If that doesn't work, contact @Nillerswho is the Arma3 Community Manager.

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Hello everyone, back here once again with another update after stacks of college work!

So far I've been dealing with a lot of object placement in both of the artificial palm tree islands and also in yet another city I've been working on. I've decided a few more things about the context in which Bastek is being designed; my headcanon of the situation in Bastek is that of utmost turmoil, between segregation, richness, and poverty. I aim to make some regions of Bastek be very well structured, urbanized, and developed, while other areas to be shanty towns, villages, ruins, and overall more empoverished areas. So Bastek wouldn't at all be a land of perfection but instead that of major conflict that is often disguised and overshadowed by it's more succesful regions. This would give motivation to possible conflicts, and also a concept layout for the map to be worked on, I hope these differences will be easily noticeable further down the line. With this said, here's some pictures of said areas. A medium city, and the rich sector of the palm tree islands.

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Among other plans, I still need to work A LOT on the Satellite Imagery and the ground textures. I'm planning on adding some more disturbed/city-like/non-dunes sand for the more transited areas, along with some rubble GDTs.

In other news, I've also been playing games set in the middle-eastern region and theme. I've picked up both Conflict Desert Storm and Serious Sam 3: BFE, along playing some Battlefield 3 and Spec Ops: The Line, to gather some refferences, concepts, solutions and ideas for making the terrain. If you have any suggestions for games that fit in this category, regardless of the story or it's seriousness, please do recommend! I am mostly interested in looking around the terrains and maps to have a clearer refference and feel for this sort of setting. All in the name of research!

As always, thanks for your interest!

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As a fellow terrain maker, your use of sidewalks along roads makes me a happy camper 😎  Looking good so far. Just keep chipping away at it.

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2 hours ago, accuracythruvolume said:

As a fellow terrain maker, your use of sidewalks along roads makes me a happy camper 😎  Looking good so far. Just keep chipping away at it.


Thank you! Haha, it's a very time consuming and tedious thing having to place them all one by one, but it's a habit I sort of picked up over time, I've just found ways to try and keep it entertaining, or I'll usually do it on autopilot mode as I watch a college class or between matches in another game before it's my turn to play hahah. There's definitely not a lot of terrains that actually use them! Lots of work but hopefully worth it in the end 🙂

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Some more pictures of the extensions I've been doing to the city I've been working on. I guess you could say I went on a very secure joyride aswell! 😛

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started making and adding the first iterations and variations of surfaces/ground detail textures and clutter. I've been running around a bunch of games looking at how they handle the ground clutter to try and make something that works well. I can probably do some things to make it better, but I'm very happy with the results so far!

AND ANOTHER JOYRIDE! I really enjoy the landscape and layout I've created for this city!

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Have an interesting sight! Old dig-up site Archeology and stuff! Yay!
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And some other details on the city I've been working on!

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I've been schooling myself on this theme and vibe for the terrain 😛

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I've updated the main post to contain more up-to-date information and images of the terrain in it's current state, alongside my goals, dreams, and expectations. Cheers and thanks everyone who checks up on this and shows interest! 🙂

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Looks good! Thanks for the hard work!

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I've been super busy with college and life lately but I've been trying to get a few bites in. Here's some more pics of another city area I'm working on! The ground surfaces and all is still very WIP for these areas and still doing more object detail placement.

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I also JUST realised I never posted ANYTHING of the military base I had been working on in the map aswell, so here it is!

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Cheers and thanks all!

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Really like how it is turning out! i feel like i can make some great screenshots here with the MARAR faction from the Atlas addon for the Aegis mod.

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@Vectif
This is really looking awesome, but i am concerned about Ai driving on this map, have you tried there skills on the map?

 

Cheers Play3r

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On 8/5/2021 at 5:01 PM, Play3r said:

@Vectif
This is really looking awesome, but i am concerned about Ai driving on this map, have you tried there skills on the map?

 

Cheers Play3r


Hi! Thanks for bringing it up to my attention.

I have been testing this during and throughout development of the terrain and so far it has been mostly OK. I've ran a few scenarios putting AI against each other to engage and fight both in urban and mechanized combat and it has worked fine on most occassions. I've had to make a few tweaks and fixes here and there, but it is something that I'm indeed trying to keep in mind while working on the terrain. The only 'recurring' issue I've run into is tight turns (e.g. that military airfield's entrance 90º degree turn) for big vehicles, but I am trying to keep close attention to that. I've been trying to keep track of such things and run livefire scenarios with AI to see how they perform and so far it's been going fine.

Thanks for the concern! Have a good one.
Vectif.

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slowly but surely, I've extended the northern section of a previous town I was working on and also decided to add a bridge to make it connect to the mainland from two different access points as opposed to just one. Added a lot of marketplaces and urban combat areas too.

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hey all. throwing some more new Bastek WIPs. Still not any less busy than before, but still trying to work whenever I get time, hope all is fine for everyone! I'm really excited and can't wait to further polish this terrain, but here's some more of where it's at now! Most notably I've started to work on the most "modern"/"first world"-like city of the map, this is the one that's located just underneath the artificial islands, and one of the few that overshadow the other things going on in the less fortunate places in Bastek. I've also started to add some other miscellaneous site to the map such as port areas, bays, factories, and extending some of the slums aswell. There is still a lot of work left to be done, and that's for object placement - not to mention the satellite imagery and surfaces still have plenty to go! Cheers and thanks for your interest!

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I don't know about you guys, but I can't wait to be in a firefight in this area! My mind is already racing just imagining the ideas or how creative people could get with these areas. I'm still fixated on the Bastek' story canon, and this area is the epitome of the unjustness and unfairness that inequally spreads across Bastek and divides it's people. This is the modern success-story city area that overshadows all other issues in Bastek, and as such, it is a target for all parties involved in the conflict. Whether it's hearts and minds, money switching hands, insurgencies or terror... it all stems from here. 

I couldn't leave y'all without some pictures along my random ramble.
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In reality, this area is still very barebones in terms of the development and scope I'd like it to have at this time, despite the fact that I've been extensively working on it as of lately. Here's a view of the city from afar so you can sort of get an idea. There will still be suburbs and the modernity of it will slowly decay as you further yourself away from the town centre. A lot is still left to be placed, a lot more buildings and roads! Stay tuned and thanks for checking this out!

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