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Maps and how does one create a new one?


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To make a map, you need a height file which gives you the contours, and then a terrain file which puts in the woods, buildings etc. While you can't create your own height file, you can build your own terrain over an existing height file.

You can find some info on making a terrain file here:


It's for SB 1, but most of it will be applicable to SB Pro PE.

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There are two different map files. Height and Terrain.

Height maps are difficult without the requisite software to make and only few know how. With the requisite software they should be easier (but it would likely cost an arm and a leg, and need Nil’s approval I suspect). So it is unlikely that you can create them. Height maps are the most basic type.

Terrain maps are connected to a height map (in other words, you need a height map to make a terrain map). You have a variety of options when it comes to creating these maps. You can create anything from a desert terrain that simulates the middle east or a highly wooded area that one would expect to find in Europe.

The first step would be to select a height map. Just go to file > new and then select a map from there. You can also select a theme from the drop down menu if you wish, or even create your own.

When it comes to placing terrain types, there is a box for each type. Select the box of your choice and you can then paint the type on the map. There is a smaller box in the terrain type box. If you select that, then you will not be able to replace that terrain with another when painting on the map (for instance you have a river and want to paint forests on either side, but you dont want to replace the river, select the small box in the water terrain type box, and then select the larger box for the forest, and then paint).

When it comes to trees, bushes, rocks or buildings, you can select multiple items (use ctrl button (I think that is it) when clicking those items that you want) and you can place those types on the map (by left clicking on the map). The computer will pick them at random. If you just want one type, it is as simple as clicking on one type.

Good luck on the map making.

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Anyone with SB Pro (as distinct from SB Pro PE) is capable of generating and exporting a height map from any suitable data.

To get the best from the simulation and engine, the data resolution should be significantly higher than any freely available/low cost sources (except possibly SRTM-1 for CONUS), SRTM-3 is possible, and I have several heightmaps for new regions that I have requested and received (...in fact I don't think I do, as both the areas I have fall significantly north of 60N, and are from data formatted the same as SRTM-3 but generated from topographic maps).

There are a number of height-maps on the CD that don't currently have adequate versions of their prototypical terrain, so it would be worth checking to see if your region of interest already exists.

For working with the terrain maps, users with SB-Pro have access to a wide range of GIS software for generating and processing existing land-class data and for distributing and aligning vector and point data with Satelite imagery etc, before import into SB Pro. SB Pro PE is much more clumsy in this respect, lacking import or overlay options (although there is an interesting work-around to the latter)

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So in short, if I want to import a section of England I'm gonna need SB Pro.


What I was really after was how to make a height map,

But as I may need Nils's say so, this could prove problematic

One of my housemates has Software that he uses in his civil engineering projects, it works in a similar way to how GH_Lieste decribes.

I shall have to have a play around with it methinks...

Well cheers for the help anyway guys.

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No, but you would need to request the area that you wanted a height map for, from one of the SB Pro users, who might choose to provide this file for you.

Without access to SB Pro, it is a slow and painful task to fill large areas with pseudo-accurate terrain cover and cultural features, and I would recommend starting with a small and logically self-contained area for your first attempts...

In fact have a play with one of the existing height-maps to see whether you can in fact work with the SB mapping tools present in SB Pro PE.

There are at least 4 good UK maps available already btw.


Adur Valley

Isle Of White

Salisbury Plain

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