Forums / Miscellaneous Discussions / New Map needed

New Map needed
16:47:51 Jan 17th 16 - Sir Roxbury Knickerbocker:

Everytime we try to start a new project to make a map, it falls apart within 2-3 days. This is silly because VU really needs new maps to freshen things up, and get an updated look. And its really not hard to make a map, VU still has the old Mogrox map in rotation, and its been ages since I made it.

If we look at the pieces we need.
  1. A map outline. Where the rivers go, where the mountains are, and were you can't pass, to add some strategy to it.
  2. mountains
  3. forests
  4. water/rivers

Shattered worlds is the best looking map we have. If we use that map as a template for what we want to make, then lets look at the pieces.

1.) The colours really make this map. The blue waters against the light shallows, against the green grasslands. The craters add a nice looking symmetry to it as well, but we dont notice them as much when we play since the map is zoomed in. A map doesn't need to be complicated, in fact its better if its simple.. that gives you more room to build a core and place 90k's. There needs to be some choke points however.. but a map outline isn't hard to make.

2.) The mountains on this map is a simple Photoshop bevel effect, with nice colouring.

3.) The forests are nothing special. They look like bevel effects with more shadow and some filter on them. Better looking forests would really spice up a map.

4.) The water effects are the real star of the show. This looks like a glass/ripple effect in photoshop that we can probably replicate. I know there are guides about this on Youtube as well. Water really makes a map come alive.

These are the pieces we need to make new, good looking maps. Once we made one, we have the tools to make new ones using the same tiles and effects. The problem for me is that we always give up too soon, run out of energy/encouragement. I figured that by posting here, perhaps some of you could share your skills, and we could "crowd source" a map by making the pieces separate, and then putting it all together.

This is just step one however. I know we have some skilled 3D people here, and some with talents in drawing. New townsets, new race pictures, new frontpage and interface could be added as well. We could make VU look like a 2016 game quite easily, but lets start with the basics. Post in the thread if you have ideas, skills, energy to project manage this, want to make one piece of a map, things that are on topic.

- roxy

Free, online Photoshop at  . It's much easier to have PS installed tho.

17:03:18 Jan 17th 16 - Arkantos (Sir Ajax):

also I think the maps should be made to support small sized kingdoms with 3-7 members instead of the 15+ members that it supports now. new kingdoms cannot fortify themselves correctly. The newer kingdoms usually start out with 2-3 members and will either die because they cannot fortify or get more members OR they will prosper from recruitment and become a new power house. Now when people die they will get upset at the map (blockers and bad position) to fix these you should make around 8-10 core area's on the map that are easily defended. I think it will bring more of the strategy aspect back into the game.

19:41:14 Jan 17th 16 - Cloutier (Ms. Ellsworth):

I can make one but not for free as the graphics would be way better than these

20:01:51 Jan 17th 16 - Bran (Ms. Brannigans Law):

i like art although i dont practice it, and i dont really have the means to make electronic art. but ill think about this a little and see if i can contribute since we do need some change.

but before i do anything, id want to know that zeta will actually consider implementing something

20:06:46 Jan 17th 16 - Bran (Ms. Brannigans Law):

im not sure how zeta applies the map to the game, but woudnt it be a good idea to make seperate border tiles to close off the map edges?

20:09:33 Jan 17th 16 - Sir Roxbury Knickerbocker:

Cloutier, can you post an example of your previous work? What have you done, can you do? Do you work in 3D? Can you make a town set?

Bran, just adding a new map is simple for Zeta to do from what I remember.

20:30:03 Jan 17th 16 - Sir Roxbury Knickerbocker:

Venomz and I are sitting on Skype trying to make a new mountain range for a map. This is the best one hes made so far.

23:42:18 Jan 17th 16 - Sir Jondrus Glowtana:

I think I made one a while back. I posted it in the sugs here

00:05:50 Jan 18th 16 - Arkantos (Mr. Vivi):

gave it a thumbs up

00:12:48 Jan 18th 16 - Cloutier (Mr. Cloutier I):

What kind of town set are you talking. but this game does t have towns. lol.   I'll see about posting ome examples later. hard to do on phone. lol

00:28:11 Jan 18th 16 - Sir Roxbury Knickerbocker:

I was thinking about the town icons :) They're made from simple 3D blocks, and I bet that someone who knows what they're doing could really spice them up without much effort.

11:10:49 Jan 18th 16 - Cloutier (Master Cloutier XI):

once I got time I'll see what I can do. also each race needs there own.

11:52:01 Jan 18th 16 - Bran (Ms. Brannigans Law):

i think if there were more incremental stages for the city to expand into, itd ncrease the chances of a blocker actually blocking

00:41:02 Jan 20th 16 - Nayoke the Kid (Mr. Eros The Pooper):

I was thinking about that Bran. When I try and check what city size I need for somewhere I click and drag another city image to see approx what level would work best. I think there should be a ghost image of the city you are about to settle around your army when you click the new city button, so that it would just make things more cohesive, you know? Maybe this could be implemented with the new city design layouts. 

16:06:52 Jan 22nd 16 - Mr. Josip Broz:

Should be a sponsor feature imo.

16:08:10 Jan 22nd 16 - Mr. Josip Broz:

Or just bring back great walls albeit with much shorter max size, like 2cm in each direction and at steep cost. Maybe with diagonal walls as a choice as well!

16:42:57 Jan 22nd 16 - Bran (Ms. Brannigans Law):

what if you could buy great walls from a city, and a short wall will extend out the sides of the city for fine tuning blockers. they can overlap anything thats in the way as theyre small

23:32:00 Feb 15th 16 - Jesus Left Toe (Lord Jesus Left Toe):

Anyway, getting back to topic. How is the map making going guys?

01:01:30 Feb 20th 16 - Sir Battlestar Roxbury:

We never really got off the ground. I don't really have the energy to push this project ahead.. but it needs to be done to save VU.

13:41:42 Mar 1st 16 - Mr. Deathpunch I:

Hi there, I was just clicking through the forum after recently returning to VU and  I found this post. I wondered if you were still interested in pushing ahead with improvements, I'd be happy to draft some assets.

17:40:06 Mar 1st 16 - Arkantos (Mr. Arkantos The Ardvark):

Yes, please show us some work we would love to see it!

13:49:15 Mar 8th 16 - Mr. Arkan Stoutbeard:

First test layout and test of tree brush (only one tree design so far).

15:40:43 Mar 8th 16 - ZeTa (VU Admin):

note: We do not have boats (yet)

15:50:21 Mar 8th 16 - Arkantos (Sir Ajax):

noooo Zeta!

16:30:25 Mar 8th 16 - Mr. Arkan Stoutbeard:

By that do you mean I still need to add bridges or do you mean there's too much water on the map? I'll probably scrap this design and start with the mountains anyway because......

A couple hours of mountain range testing:

SNOW Capped: 

16:37:25 Mar 8th 16 - Arkantos (Sir Ajax):

is there a way I can download the pics? my internet is too slow to open them in the browser. lmfao worse then dial-up.

16:49:33 Mar 8th 16 - Mr. Arkan Deathpunch II:

Yeah, you can click on 'post options' in Imgur and it will let you download it.

17:06:16 Mar 8th 16 - Arkantos (Mr. Arkantos The Ardvark):

I can't open the page can you post the dl link

17:22:55 Mar 8th 16 - Mr. Arkan Stoutbeard:

Still need to add some rock clutter aorund the bottom but here you go:

08:16:11 Mar 9th 16 - ZeTa (VU Admin):

I was commenting about the islands, as you are unable to reach them other then teleportation.

You should try to get a more top down perspective on the mountains and forest. The forest could also have a bit smaller trees.

00:28:53 Mar 13th 16 - King BurningLegion (Mr. Burninglegion The Slave Trader):

We need a snow covered map! Ice crossing and frosted trees

Make it happen!

05:02:36 Mar 13th 16 - Sir Battlestar Roxbury:

The mountain range looks good. I think its the best looking mountains of all the maps we have actually.

09:44:21 Mar 13th 16 - Arkantos (Mr. Arkantos The Ardvark):

I agree, Arkan message me in-game.

16:20:25 Mar 14th 16 - Mr. Arkan Stoutbeard:

Fret not. I have a map.

Presenting... *drumroll*

It's designed for heavy core warfare, I gave it a painterly feel but kept a few elements of realism. I'll let the more experienced players around here comment where the best locations for bridges are and I'll add the bridges soon.


16:40:59 Mar 14th 16 - Arkantos (Mr. Arkantos The Ardvark):

There needs to be a pass in the mountains near the bottom right corner, And another one in the moon shaped mountains in the top right. Other then that I think it could use some more water maybe a few lakes as some of the cores do not have water. Bridge placements: right side of the map on the point of the river between the trees and the mountains, South on the point of the Vertical river between the forest and the other forest, The lower horizontal river should have one on the point of the river between the trees and the river break-off, One slightly north on the vertical river at the light grass area, Two on the higher horizontal river one above the trees and one in the opening near the other break-off, as well as two bridges on the vertical river near the top of the map one not too far above the river break-off and the other one in the giant opening at the top. hope this helps It looks really good though, I'm excited.

16:54:07 Mar 14th 16 - Dragon Prophet Theophilus:

It looks great. I would like to see a bit more open space, however.

04:33:58 Mar 15th 16 - King BurningLegion (King Burninglegion The Blood Mage):

Great work Arkan Stoutbeard

Impressive keep it up!

11:37:54 Mar 15th 16 - Zephyr (Marquess Hartmut):

Holy Shit, what a nice map, I may even play the world this map is applied to!

17:42:15 Mar 15th 16 - Arkantos (Mr. Arkantos The Ardvark):

We need some input from Zeta too, He know things we don't. Everyone start praying we can work this out and make sure Arkan get enough of a BT/Title payment to give him enough incentive to create a bunch more maps.

19:30:20 Mar 15th 16 - Mr. Arkan Deathpunch II:

Some improvements made:
  • Offset the map to improve the edges
  • Added various lakes for those halfer farmers
  • Cut some paths through mountains to improve flow
  • Added bridges

19:44:50 Mar 15th 16 - Mr. Ivanho:

Arkan it's an AWESOME map!!!.

Really good piece of ART. keep it up. o_0

20:21:17 Mar 15th 16 - Mr. Necro Emporos:

Looks good. Is it possible you could upload a 2x2 tiled image of it? Just to see what it would look like in-game.

20:38:20 Mar 15th 16 - Mr. Arkan Deathpunch II:

21:53:47 Mar 15th 16 - ZeTa (VU Admin):

It looks nice! But it has to be scaled down to around 60%. It's currently too "zoomed in". You can continue with the same style, but make it 1.667% larger, so 4168px.

Most art is actually done this way, so it looks "high def" when viewed from a distance, or in case of computer graphics; resized.

Besides the size I think it's good enough. But to make it look better you could add shadows and a bit more variance and detail to make the areas unique.

Also some good placements for Zetamania walls would be nice.

22:28:11 Mar 15th 16 - Sir Battlestar Roxbury:

Zeta, maybe you should specify the max size in megabyte as well, so he knows if he has to decrease quality. If quality is cut, then shadows and details could be affected.

The map itself looks great. I really like the mountain ranges. I think the number of mountains should be reduced, so that it becomes a resource worth fighting over, and so there is room to build lots of 90k mines. Mountains also work better if they are narrow, even if they dont look like that in real life.

If you can convince Zeta not to tile the map, but use a bigger map.. then you can do mountains with snow in the north, and a more warm yellow tone in the south .. giving the map the impression of a world rather than a map.

22:46:24 Mar 15th 16 - Alrisaia (Ms. Alrisaia The Prism):

I would much rather see the ability for some sort of randomly generated map to make it into vu.

I'm up for coding the program that would generate the map is zeta is open to sharing the kind of parameters the map contains (passable not passable land).

Then the focus for artwork would be put into creating the sprite cards terrain would use and not the map as a whole.


23:06:59 Mar 15th 16 - Arkantos (Sir Ajax):

I would much rather see the ability for some sort of randomly generated map to make it into vu.

I would very much be interested in this how hard would it be to complete?

23:29:16 Mar 15th 16 - ZeTa (VU Admin):

Sir Battlestar Roxbury:

Zeta, maybe you should specify the max size in megabyte as well, so he knows if he has to decrease quality. If quality is cut, then shadows and details could be affected.

Don't worry about file size, I will jpg compress it. Compare with the _HQ versions here:


I would much rather see the ability for some sort of randomly generated map to make it into vu.

This would be much more feasible with a hex map.

23:32:10 Mar 15th 16 - Arkantos (Mr. Arkantos The Ardvark):

So another Update that has to be placed on a waiting list  :P 

seriously though do an update soon, Even a small simple one is greatly appreciated.

03:07:32 Mar 16th 16 - Alrisaia (Ms. Alrisaia The Prism):


I would much rather see the ability for some sort of randomly generated map to make it into vu.

I would very much be interested in this how hard would it be to complete?

Well, currently I cannot answer that since I don't know any details of what information zeta maintains for the maps such as polygon connect points for borders of tree, river, mountain, etc...

But I've already started toying with the idea of a tile based strategy game and have some of a random map generator in place already. 

To respond to zeta, I see your point but it's still plausible in the current configuration right? 

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