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Alois

Student Thread: Chrras

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Go ahead and start in creation kit by making a small island.

So here was the best video I came across when I was trying to learn Creation Kit for the first time. It is very detailed on what you need to press and where things are located. https://www.youtube....h?v=0g87PaahBEw

Some things to note when creating a new World Space:

  1. Click on World, World Spaces as stated in the video.
  2. It will bring up a large window with a list of world spaces
  3. Right Click and press new, type in the name you want to call it in the editor
  4. IMPORTANT, also type in a name in the name field. You have to name it twice! The name in the editor will refer to the name it is called in creation kit when you want to load it. The name in the name field will refer to what it is called in game when it is loading or when you are traveling to it.
  5. Make sure you select NONE for your parent worldspace. This is important as well. While you can use a parent world space and some videos suggest it, it is best not to use one. The reason being is in game it can cause odd floating objects to appear from skyrim into your world and your wold into skyrim. I have never completely figured this out, so I just always select NONE as the parent world space to avoid issues.
  6. In the upper right hand corner is default land height and default water height. Be careful with these, you could create a lot of work for yourself if you make the difference between the two a lot. A different in 1000 is actually plenty and there is no reason it needs to be much more. Also pay attention if you are typing in a negative number or a positive number. Another thing to take note is if you want the water level to be higher than the land initially or the land to be higher than the water. So, in other words, you have to decide would you rather raise the land to go above the ocean water or would you rather lower land to get to the ocean water. A lot of videos will start with the ocean water higher than the actual land but its a personal choice. Also note, there are also squares of water (water tables) in creation kit that you can place at any height and make as deep or as shallow as you want. So if you are concerned about the ocean water, don't let it concern you much.

This should help you get started for the most part... I will actually leave the next part of this off until you get the basics down. The next part will be creating a load door that you can walk up to, open, and be able to go into to load your world. I think its best to learn the basics in this tutorial and steps before you try attempting that.

At point, I would press the save button, and then save it to your skryim data folder. If it does not default you there and you need help finding it let me know. Type the name in, and save it. It will save the file you named and add a .esp at the end of it.

Launch the Skyrim Launch/Load menu and press data files. It should bring up a menu with all the data files in it similar to what was shown at the beginning of the first video. Scroll down to the bottom and look for your esp file. Make sure your esp file is checkmarked and press okay. This will ensure it will load in game.

Once you have created your world space to load it in the game you just need to press the (`) or the one that has the ~ or ` signs on it and it will create a black box at the bottom of your screen in game. To get to your world space you just need to type "cow yourworldspacenamehere 0,0" It will load your worldspace and place you in cell 0,0.

Oh, also if you can't get things to work right on your first try. Do not worry as even when following the tutorials, I still didn't get things right at first and it can get frustrating, but I can help and just keep trying.

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I've created the world for my island, and also worked a bit with terraforming to make the island. I haven't used any textures or placed any objects on my island, just some basic elevation.
Here are a couple of screenshots from both Creation Kit and in game:


NhrCq5K.jpg

y1k3RWu.jpg04L3kip.jpg


I wasn't really sure about how much you would've liked me to do in this step, feel free to correct me if I misunderstood you :)

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Good!

This is fine, you didn't have to do much with it. It was just the basics to get you to setup the basic area where you will be working on. It was to get you familiar with the basic commands, and controls.

What kind of area would you like to build? A forest, valley, a city, hillside, etc? You can pick anything. Let me know what you decide so I can help you along with creating that kind of area.

Thanks

Edited by Alois

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I was thinking of a somewhat small temperate island with some grasslands, hills and a sparse forest - also a couple of houses or other structures, it would be nice to learn that as well ;)

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Alright,

Since you want to have quite a few areas, I would recommend making the island 10 times the size of what it is now. This way you have more space to work with. You also have to decide, what will go where on the island. Will the forest and grasslands be near each other one one end of the island and the houses on the other? You also should decide if you want any large hills on the island. Maybe you could make a large hill that goes to the edge of the island with a cliff dropping off into the ocean.

So expand the island and try deciding where the basic layout of the island for where the hills will go (if any). Typically, it is best to add some sort of hill to make it look natural

Once you have that done, I would start to experiment with the ground textures a bit.

Note: There are two ways to go about approaching this depending on if you place rocks in the terrain first.

  • If you place rocks first, typically it is best to use a "no grass" texture. This is because if you use a grass texture "with grass" over the entire area, the grass will grow look like it is growing inside the rock. This doesn't appear natural.
  • You could also pain an entire area with the grass "with grass" texture, add rocks, and then paint the grass "no grass" underneath the rocks, but I find this more difficult

Overall, you had decide which of those two approaches is easier for you. I typically pain an entire area grass "with grass", place my trees, THEN place my rocks. Then I repaint over the entire area again with the grass "no grass" and then slightly tap in grass "with grass" in spots that should have grass because there are no rocks or trees.

I hope that makes sense. Let me know if it doesn't. :)

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Alternatively, here's my workflow... 

  • Block out basic large features of the island in the terrain. Mountains, hills, bays, etc. 
  • Go over the entire island with a base texture. Usually, this will be dirt. Use a 100% opacity. 
  • Select a 'detail' base texture. Using a 10-20% opacity, run over the island randomly until you've managed to break up visible tiling on the base texture. How much you need to do it depends on the texture you choose.
  • Place very large rocks. Mountain cliffs, rock cliffs, and streams. And roads too. It's a lot harder to put down large objects when you've already done the small pass. 

Now, this is where paths differ. It's time to bring in Object Palette Editing (Disclaimer: That's the first tutorial I saw). Outline a small area, one or two cells. This will be your testbed for designing how the rest of the biome will look.

  • Start by going over the base textures with your grass of choice. Use about 20-30% opacity for grass, since if it has a 3D mesh it looks weird when the texture itself isn't there.
  • Don't cover all of the base dirt, though. It needs to be there to add to the look. Think of this like painting.
  • After that, I like to outline all the large rocks with a rock texture. You can do this before the grass, but it's easier to fix it now if your grass is accidentally poking through a rock mesh. Just cover it back up with rock. 
  • Some people use different styles with the rock texture. I'm still trying to figure out a better way to do it than outlining every rock with a ring of texture myself.
  • You should be about done with landscape editing now. Time for objects in your testbed. 
  • Go ahead and build all the objects into the area. Trees, bushes, smaller rocks, flowers, etc. Go wild, but don't overdo it.

The fun part!

  • Create a new object palette and save it with a relevant name/
  • Take all of the objects you've used in the testbed, and load them into the OPAL. You'll have to do it through the object window. Can't do it directly with already placed items.
  • You can set some things to the item in the OPAL to make placement easier, like 'conform to slope'. Useful for shrubs and rock piles that should match what they're sitting on. Not for use with trees.
  • Save the OPAL. You wouldn't believe how many times I forget this step. 
  • Now that it's set up, you can start recreating that testbed across the entire area you want to look like it. 
  • Just press ctrl-alt to place an item (Highlight everything in the OPAL list), and go to town.
  • Follow what the random objects it picks tell you to do. Make sure not to make everything too homogenous though. 

I really should make a topic to extoll the glories of OPALs in the landscaping forum. Maybe even upload some of the ones I use. 

Also, I usually don't use the grass textures that don't have a 3D grass model, because you're limited to 6 landscape textures per quarter-cell, which can get restricting when you're using a base, accent base, rock, and grass, and then throw in water features with mud on top of that. 

Edited by ub3rman123
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Thanks to both of you! 
Yeah, when I was writing #6, I was also realizing that my island so far was too small.

I'll hopefully look into it tomorrow, again thanks for your help so far :)

Edited by Chrras

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Thanks uber3man, I think this will be insightful and helpful for me as well :)

Yea, looks like our styles are a bit different though. It's all a personal preference. I use non 3d land textures because having all plants looks very crowded in some areas, and it is needs to thinned out a bit. However, when you do this, you have to make sure you use that non 3d texture throughout the entire area. This is because like he said, you only get 6 texture slots. It limits a lot of things.

Edited by Alois

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The 3d land textures sounds a bit complex, maybe I will understand them better when I actually get into the CK later today ;)
And happy birthday Alois, I was randomly browsing the calendar, and according to that, it is your birthday! :D

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I have a question. I was about to continue on my work on the island, but when I was loading my saved world with File>Data - do I have to set it as an active file or not? It comes up with a warning if I doesn't do it, but I am not sure what to select ;)

Edited by Chrras

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Yes, it needs to be set as the active file because that is the file you will be working on

Ah, thanks. I am currently working on the island, will keep you updated ;)

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I am still working with the terraforming, but I would like to know if there are any way to make the render window load more of the level than it does? It is difficult to work in a larger area, if it is going to load all the time, so I would believe that there is some sort of option - otherwise it must be driving you mad :)
And also, is there any way to make the mouse wheel scroll faster when zooming in and out
Yet another thing have occurred. When I try to load my island with the command "cow NewIsland" (I called my worldspace NewIsland), it says: "Missing parameter Cell X" - it wasn't a problem when I first made the island, but now it is.

Edited by Chrras

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Yep! All of those can be accessed through the Preferences menu, which is found under file>Preferences.

I'm not on a computer with CK, so I'll guess at what the setting are called.

For the world size, you can go to the Misc tab and change the 'grids to load' or whatever it's called from the default of 5. I usually use 10-20, depending on how cluttered the area I'm working on is.

For scroll speed, that's under camera controls on the first tab of Preferences. Can set it what whatever you like. 

For the COW command, you need to input a cell location as well as the worldspace. So for example, you'd use cow NewIsland 0,0 to teleport to cell 0,0 of the world. 

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Yep! All of those can be accessed through the Preferences menu, which is found under file>Preferences.

I'm not on a computer with CK, so I'll guess at what the setting are called.

For the world size, you can go to the Misc tab and change the 'grids to load' or whatever it's called from the default of 5. I usually use 10-20, depending on how cluttered the area I'm working on is.

For scroll speed, that's under camera controls on the first tab of Preferences. Can set it what whatever you like. 

For the COW command, you need to input a cell location as well as the worldspace. So for example, you'd use cow NewIsland 0,0 to teleport to cell 0,0 of the world. 

Thanks a lot

I found the right settings! There are really a lot, and I was not sure which ones to mess around with. As you said, the "grids to load" are under the Misc tab, and the scroll speed is under the Movement tab. That was really nice

And I realized later that I was missing the cell location - apology for not updating my post :)

Edited by Chrras
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I have been working a lot on terraforming today, forming the hills and such. Below are the results:

rgPvgjg.png
cUOu2rI.jpg9rr6Ytt.jpgvk6DNlo.jpghwvQ50t.jpg

When I was happy with the shapes of the island, I continued onto planning the biomes:


A2a2RPX.png


Then I began texturing. First, I painted the whole island with LReachDirt01:

EhDHMSK.png


Then I was trying to add some detail base texture, as ub3rman suggested. I wasn't really sure what to use, but I ended up with LReachMoss01. I found it hard to paint it with the low opacity - either it was too little or it was too much. Maybe it is easier to detail it after I have painted grass and such in the different biomes. 
Other than I was finding it hard to make it look good, another problem occurred. When I placed the texture, some cells were just showing up with a black texture. It must be a loading mistake in CK, because they looking normal in game - any way to fix this?
 

af4ITqR.jpg

I would like to hear your suggestions. As said, I found it hard to paint the detail base texture :)
- Chrras

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