Last time I talked about doing the initial build of the world in Fractal Terrains 3. After I brought a PNG of it into Paint.net, I created a variety of layers (plate tectonics, volcanic activity, ocean currents, wind currents) and from there determined areas of decreased and increased rainfall. I went back into FT3 to my saved version before I had created the snow and areas of variant rainfall, because I hadn’t done it very well. With my new map in Paint.net, I had a much better idea where warm winds would push rain onshore, and where mountains would block it. I did a better job on the snow, and then made another KMZ and another PNG. One thing I found was that the Lower Temperature in offset actually did the reverse, which created a few 1500 degree mountain tops before I figured it out. After that I just set the temperature to -20 and sprinkled snow on the mountains.
Then I used the new KMZ overlay and created tours of the world in summer and in winter, so I could analyze changing weather patterns over the year. My world has a larger axial tilt than Earth’s so the weather swings are more abrupt and civilization will be more concentrated near the equator. Northern barbarians and southern nomads will raid the warmer regions during their winter, except for isolated groups that emulate the Inuit and hunt on the ice floes and spin tales in the dark months. Creating those movies was very helpful in imagining seasonal caravan routes, sea travel, pirate attacks, and continuous trade routes along the equator.
I also did the same thing for the homeworld of the Seveysas, a key alien race in the game. They also prefer terrestrial planets, but their homeworld is very different from both Earth and the world I just created for the game.It didn’t take long to do either. Once you get the hang of it, it only takes a few hours. Fixing the rivers takes the longest and causes the most eyestrain.
Unfortunately, you can’t save movies in Google Earth unless you buy Google Earth Pro. Instead, I created tours of the spinning globe in Google Earth with the moviemaker function, then used Open Broadcaster Software to make a video capture of the tour as it played. That created an 1680×1080 (30 fps) FLV file of the video in my Video folder. I then opened Avidemux and followed the instructions on cropping at that GeniusStudioDesigner has on YouTube. I wanted to get rid of the USAF Landsat text at the bottom, so I cropped the globe very close (Top=158, Bottom=178, Left=538, Right=190). Once I was done, the size was 952×714 (4:3 ratio), with the video saved as an AVI. Then I used Any Video Converter to convert the AVIs to either FLVs or MP4s (640×480). Oh, there was some garbage sound on the audio track, so I took it into VideoPad from NCH Software and muted the audio. And here’s the finished product, a spinning globe of my gaming world.