Unfortunately, I don't seem to be able to open my .raw files to start the map making process.
I'm using GIMP to export a heightmap as raw image data (file extension .data), then rename the extension to .raw manually. Then, when I try to open it in lndromat, the program just closes -- a crash?
I can't seem to find online how to export anything as a .RAW file; Minas's tutorial here seems to suggest to just "save the file as a .raw image", but all the sources online that I could find say that can't be done, and that .RAW images are only supposed to be imported, not exported.
Anyone know of a good .LND editing / creation tool that can import 2D heightmaps of other filetypes? PNG for example? I love the idea of lndromat, and using the dummy files contained in the 0.96 release I can see it works, just not for my own files.
Any other suggestions into how to get into map editing / creation for BnW are welcome. I like the flow of creating a heightmap first, so if that's still possible in another way, that'd please me.
It looks like Nospher had the same problem as I did, and that they posted a work-around that worked for me, too. Instead of creating a heightmap from scratch, I import and edit-in-place the sample one provided with the lndromat installation. Then I save it as .DATA and rename to .RAW, as described above. This now imports into lndromat!
However, it still is very error-prone: some situations seem to bug out and crash the program, and I haven't yet figured out why.
But for now, I can create and import heightmaps. Awesome! Off to landscape painting...!
Alright! After extensive testing and a bit of headache, I have figured out the source of the crashes.
For me, at least, the following does not produce a crash:
1. Create a 512x512 image in GIMP.
2. Make sure only a continuous square area of 255x255 of that image, or less, is non-black i.e. any value higher than #000000.
3. Any pixel within this square can be any grayscale value between #000000 and #ffffff (although #ffffff will produce extreme mountains for the game).
4. Export as raw data in GIMP, using Planar settings --> it gets the .data extension.
5. Rename the file exension to .raw manually.
6. Import into lndromat.
7. Use the "dummy" .DDS file that came with the 0.96 release of lndromat but wasn't included in the current release.
8. Use the texture files from another land, for example Land1.lnd from the basegame -- or use your own texture set of course -- see instructions in the lndromat readme, in release 0.96.
9. Save as any filename.lnd.
10. Open in BW Surveyor --> confirm that the land looks like the heightmap as expected, and doesn't have any weird, jagged aliasing artefacts.
11. The land appears to be rotated 180 degrees from what you exported your image as, however. Keep that in mind if that's any sort of important to you. However, in-game, you'll be rotating around a lot anyway, so I'm not sure it matters much really unless you're very particular about on which part of your map the sun rises and sets. If so, experiment away and tell me what you find...!
Any other image size, or exceeding this "256x256 square within the 512x512 image" rule seems to crash lndromat on import. Staying withing those bounds, within the larger image, however, is fine! Any other image sizes produces either very weird resulting .LND files when inspected in BW Surveyor (think horizontally tiled versions of your heightmap, or extremely jagged toothbrush-like-looking landscapes), or simply crashes lndromat, making you unable to even produce the .LND file in the first place.
But keep to these steps, and you should be good to go! :yourock:
My tip: create a layer that's 256x256 inside your 512x512 project, and make a 512x512 layer that's your bottom layer, filled in completely black. This is your "background layer". The 256x256 layer can be transparent on the edges, so you only have to "paint onto the black background", and when you export as raw data, it will flatten the image correctly without trouble. This is what I do, so that I know where my 256x256 bounds are (since they're where the layer ends).
However. If the "import textures from land file?" step is supposed to allow the program to generate textures that make sense, i.e. sand on beach areas, snow in the hills, rock/grass/dry grass in places -- then that's not what happens. Also, the Dummy.DDS file shows its ugly red-and-white stripes when you play the map in-game until you've scrolled over the area with your camera at least once, so it's probably worthwhile to find out where to get some proper low-res .DDS texture somewhere in the game's files (if you wanna use the official textures).
For the which-texture-where problem I assume I still need to define "countries" somehow, which is something I'm sure I've read about somewhere, but am not sure yet how to put into my maps.