You have finally decided to get out there and make your own maps! Well you have come to the right place! Here we will get you started on the epic journey to making your own custom worlds! I'll try to make it as painless as possible! (Psst, don't worry! Compared to ImpressiveTitle, this is a cake walk.)
First up! We have to make a HeightMap.
Go into the FH folder.
Open. Media> Terrains
You will see all the map folders.
What I do is go into the Watermill map folder and 'copy' the heightmap (The grey picture) and rename it. Be sure to name it 'MapnameTerrain' (Ex: SuferiaTerrain) This way you have it already preset to the correct size and format without having to make a new file. (DON'T steal anybody else's height-maps!)
Open this newly created map in Gimp, or Photoshop. This is where you edit the map and make it your own.
If you were to create a heightmap on your own there's a few preferences it must follow and it has the very same as the heightmap used above and below. When your create/save a heightmap it must/should follow these rules.
1. It must be saved into a PNG format
2. It can only consist of 1 layer!(If you use more the game will crash upon importing it) Make sure you flatten/merge the layers on the image before saving it.
3. The image must be saved/edited in grayscale mode and cannot consist of or use colours(If not the game will crash)
4. The Image size should be even on both size, the standard size is 513 x 513 pixels.
5. The use of "Alpha Channel" should be left unmarked/turned off.
Grab the paintbrush tool and make it large. COMPLETELY erase the map that is already there by covering it over with black or a middle shade of gray. If you don't.... people have ways of finding out; and then things get ugly. Make sure every map is 100% your own!
When coloring your height-map you should know that white represents the highest parts of your map. Black represents the lowest level or the deepest places on your map. I always color my map a shade of dark gray to start with like the picture above. So when it comes time to put in rivers and lakes it's easier. If you start on a black base, you can't go any lower.
Now that you have that blank slate to work with; you can start giving your map character. Using varying shades of gray; mark where you want landmarks to be on your map. Such as hills, mountains, lakes and rivers.
If you plan on making a HUGE map (I'd say 15000+), you will want to make any markings on your map small. If you make a super large mark on your map, then go in game, it will be huge! Use small brushes for bigger maps.
So if you started on a middle gray for a base then rivers and lakes would be DARKER colors than your base and hills and mountains would be LIGHTER.
The Smudge tool and the Blur tool are very handy when making maps (Shown above). It allows you to add more detail and smooth out rough edges.
After you finish coloring your height-map in all those, lovely, shades of gray, you can move onto the “Map Maker: Terrain Mask” tutorial!