Hollow Earth

Fens Redesign: Part 1

I figured that, while I was redesigning Fens, I should make some posts about the process and why I’m changing things. Basically, going into old Fens makes me cringe in many places. One area is textures. There are two problems with the old textures in Fens. First, they are often low-resolution. Second, they are almost all washed out. Take the grass texture, used at the link-in point and on the tops of the basin walls:

Is so ugly!

Old Fens Grass

The size is alright, but the texture is very flat. It’s made from a picture of relatively sparse grass and weeds and really had little done to it other than making it seamless. Nothing pops in this image and it doesn’t contribute to the Age’s aesthetic. It’s just another green texture in a world of mostly green. Now compare that to the revised moss texture used in the same places:

Is so pretty!

New Fens Moss

The texture retains a mostly greenish hue, but the texture is much more dynamic. Higher saturation and contrast means the texture feels deeper and gives the mesh more depth. The texture is also more friendly to things like normal mapping should I choose to go down that route.

The remaining issues in Fens’ textures come primarily from size. As part of this overhaul/quality pass, almost all textures have been increased. The blue sacks have gone from a 256×256 texture to 512×512. New flora have gotten textures usually in the same range. For other textures, I would like to use mipmaps to make textures fade in as you get closer, like they do in Kadish.

Finally, another issue with textures is simply that they’re bad. In particular, the fantail/sailback plants have a poorly-made texture that should never have been released. This is why I am doing the redesign rather than working on a new Age, because revising this Age will help me better understand the issues that I have and correct them. In the future, I will hopefully keep my textures high quality and high resolution rather than trying to use the smallest texture possible.


Filed under: Ages, Development, ,

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All posts are my opinion only and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of others.
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