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CorinaMarie

C.O.R.I.M.A.P.S. - A Tutorial for SimCity 4

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1 minute ago, CorinaMarie said:

I believe this might be the culprit. Although that does change the coloring to a grayscale appearance, it is still likely in RGB file format. Look for an option to actually change the mode to grayscale.

The grayscale height-map could be 8-bit and 256 shades of gray, but it must also be 'indexed' specifically as a grayscale image otherwise SC4 will simply render a flat region. 

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SC4_Terraformed_in_Game_zpsvgs2ocv4.jpg

Here is a single large tile I terra-formed by hand using SC4 terra-forming tools.  In City View.

Sc4_Region_View_zps0ngbib94.jpg

Here is the single large tile in Region view.  Now I load the Region into SC4 mapper and create an .SC4M file.

SC4M_Map_zpseq52gr8s.jpg

Here is the tile loaded into SC4 Mapper and printed out as a .bmp file which could potentially be converted to a grayscale.

SC4_Region_View_SC4M_zpskghzxjyu.jpg

Here is the .SC4M file used to re-create the region with the single city tile.

SC4 Mapper can be downloaded from SC4 Devotion.

http://sc4devotion.com/csxlex/lex_filedesc.php?lotGET=2880

The demonstration above is to show how we can create terra-formed regions in SC4 with our own hands using the terra-forming tools in SC4 and then save them with SC4 mapper and share them.   below is the SC4M file created from my tile that I hand-made.  

Simtropolis.SC4M

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11 hours ago, RobertLM78 said:

64 x LENGTH IN km + 1 = # PIXELS FOR GREYSCALE MAP

So, for 5x5 large map file:

64 x (5x4) + 1 = 1281pixels, or 1281x1281 pixels, since it's a 5x4 large map. 

I don't get the same results... 64x5+1=321 in my calculator.

Also, how do you do 64x(5x4) ? You are talking about "5x5 large map file", so where does the 4 come from ?

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  • Original Poster
  • The 4 comes from the fact that one single large tile requires 4x4 pixels in the config.bmp. So when you have a region that is 5 large tiles wide you multiply the 5 times 4 to get the number of pixels wide the config.bmp needs to be. So rearranging that formula:

    5 (large tiles) x 4 (pixels) = 20 x 64 (in-city tiles per pixel of config.bmp) = 1280 + 1 (for whyever it needs a plus one) = 1281 pixels for the grayscale.

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    30 minutes ago, CorinaMarie said:

    5 (large tiles) x 4 (pixels) = 20 x 64 (in-city tiles per pixel of config.bmp) = 1280 + 1 (for whyever it needs a plus one) = 1281 pixels for the grayscale.

    Huh... learn something new everyday.  I thought that was supposed to be because a large map is 4km x 4km, but you're explanation seems equally reasonable.  Either way, the formula works!!   *:D

    (Haha - 'for whyever it needs a plus one'... I always thought that was a bit weird too, though I'm sure there's a good reason for it) 

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  • 5 minutes ago, RobertLM78 said:

    I thought that was supposed to be because a large map is 4km x 4km, but you're explanation seems equally reasonable.  Either way, the formula works!!   *:D

    I'm not sure if I read my explanation in some other thread or not. Like you say, either way works. Taking this a little further here's the same for medium tiles. Let's say I want 5x5 mediums instead of large tiles.

    5 (medium tiles) x 2 (pixels) = 10 x 64 = 640 + 1 = 641

    Or 5 x 5 smalls would be:

    5 (small tiles) x 1 (pixel) = 5 x 64 = 320 + 1 = 321

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    2 hours ago, CorinaMarie said:

    5 (small tiles) x 1 (pixel) = 5 x 64 = 320 + 1 = 321

    Aha ! It just cleared something : "tiles" is a synonym for L, M and S Cities, as well as meaning pixels, if I got that right. That's why I got 321 in my post above. Merci.

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  • On 14/04/2017 at 8:36 PM, rsc204 said:

    The function to render greyscale maps from region view is exceedingly limited in terms of what it will accept. You'd be much better off using an application such as SC4 Mapper or Landscape designer to create the actual region heightmap. Armed with an export from these, you can simply select your new region as you would any other.

    For anyone looking to make their first maps this is true as stated in my original post. If you want something better, check out the links to those programs in said first post. The method(s) outlined in this thread are for those who enjoy working with alternative ways to create SC4 maps.

     

    Speaking of alternatives, here's a variation of the same theme. Go to donjon's Fractal World Generator page. Here I've selected my own settings:

    63-01-Main-Screen.jpg

     

    Then I clicked the Create button:

    64-02-Created.jpg

     

    I then did a Right-Click on the image and selected Copy. (If you do a Save-As you get a .gif file.) I then pasted the copied image into a new file 1026 x 513 pixels. Next, in GIMP, I scaled the image to 1025 x 513 and added Gaussian Blur of 15.0:

    65-04-GBlur-15.0.png

     

    Converted to Grayscale and adjusted brightness to -35 and contrast to +20. Saved as a .bmp format:

    66-06-Gray.png

     

    Then rendered in totally vanilla game and added Maxis trees:

    67-06-RVT.jpg

     

    I believe it turned out rather well for such an inferior map making method. *;)

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    1 hour ago, CorinaMarie said:

    For anyone looking to make their first maps this is true as stated in my original post. If you want something better, check out the links to those programs in said first post. The method(s) outlined in this thread are for those who enjoy working with alternative ways to create SC4 maps.

    You misunderstand... I don't mean for creation of the actual map, I meant to export the "texture" or heightmap into an SC4 format I'd use SC4 Mapper or Terraformer. Simply because in practise it will iron out any issues which the in-game rendering mode doesn't handle.

    I think your unique approach of creating the height maps is quite useful. Since it provides a nice random way of getting started, for those who don't have a specific source of inspiration as a basis.

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    5 hours ago, huzman said:

    "tiles" is a synonym for L, M and S Cities, as well as meaning pixels

    In the BMP file, a (red) pixel is a small city-sector (or a 4x4 cluster of blue pixels is a large city). Therefore, these pixels really are the cities / tiles (which I call sectors).

    I try to avoid using the words "city" and "tile" around here because they're each used for multiple things, sometimes causing confusion. Following the game's lead, "City" usually refers to one sector of a region. However, it is also sometimes loosely applied to a whole region or a real-world city that spans several sectors within a region (e.g. The "real" San Francisco in my life-sized SF Bay Area spans a dozen or more "cities").

    "Tile" is often used to denote a "city" sector, but you'll also sometimes see it used for one tiny square covered by a lot or road (e.g. triple-tile wide avenues). I've taken to using "sector" to denote one mayoral slice of a region, and I haven't yet had to pick an unambiguous word for the little squares that define lot-size and road-width.

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  • 1 hour ago, RobertLM78 said:

    Reminds me of fracplanet .

    Nice find. I've bookmarked that. I'm sure you noticed the linky on donjon's site to other versions of Fractal Worldmap Generator.

     

    1 hour ago, jeffryfisher said:

    I try to avoid using the words "city" and "tile" around here because they're each used for multiple things, sometimes causing confusion.

    That's a good idea. In my own mind my region is a State and the city-tiles are Counties.

     

    1 hour ago, jeffryfisher said:

    I haven't yet had to pick an unambiguous word for the little squares that define lot-size and road-width.

    For me they are parcels.

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    1 hour ago, CorinaMarie said:

    That's a good idea. In my own mind my region is a State and the city-tiles are Counties.

    For me they are parcels.

    I also consider city 'tiles' as something of a county or parish (or even prefecture - since my cities tend to remind me of Japan).    Parcel I think of as a tile.  But yeah, there are some ambiguities as Jeffry pointed out.

    Edit to fix dyslexic moment  ;)

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    15 hours ago, jeffryfisher said:

    I try to avoid using the words "city" and "tile"

    That's what I'm trying to avoid. But it's something other people are doing, hence my confusion. And now you add 'sector'. Whew !!!

     

    14 hours ago, RobertLM78 said:

    In my own mind my region is a State and the city-tiles are Counties.

    Oh right ! Tends to cloud the issue a little more. Why not 'Hamlet' for the S tile, 'Village' for the M one ? To me, the names for 'Region' and 'Cities' (S,M and L) are good enough. As long everyone observes it.

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  • @huzman and I just had a PM convo in which he made the following discovery when rendering from a grayscale image:

    68-img0469.jpg

    The question (ofc) was: What is causing the borders to do that?

     

    After some testing I believe it's caused by the specific shade of gray (545454 hex). He sent me the grayscale image and I tweaked it by adding +1 brightness using GIMP.

    69-img0472.jpg

    That changed the gray to 555555 hex.

     

    The new render looks like this:

    70-img0473.jpg

    And while it did not get rid of all the anomalies along the borders, it is much improved.

     

    Then I went back to the original grayscale and added +5 brightness which made it gray 575757 hex. Now they are all gone:

    71-img0474.jpg

     

    That does raise all the terrain just a wee bit, but I feel it's better than having those goofy gaps along the borders. *;)

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  • On 08/05/2017 at 7:12 AM, RandyE said:

    I have found that terrain mods can impact the default elevation.

    Indeed. More specifically it's the Terrain Properties one:

    72-Terrain-Properties-Exemplar.jpg

     

    One such example that is this particular exemplar is the Beach Extend Mod. I once spent a few hours testing variations in a copy of the Terrain Properties that I had extracted from simcity_1.dat. I'd alter something and render a map. Alter something else and render. And nothing I changed made any difference. Well, it turned out that because I had the Beach Extend Mod installed too it was overriding my changes.

    So yes, it definitely is something to be aware of. In my tests in my above post I did not have any altered copy of this exemplar. It's simply a matter of how the game renderer handles that particular shade of gray along the borders of city tiles.

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    On 02/09/2016 at 6:50 PM, Cyclone Boom said:

    I'm definitely going to give this a try at some point.

    OK, guess what?

    326 days later, that point is finally now... *:read:


    So starting out with this:

    01-Cloud Source.jpg

     

    Cloud Map 1

    The initial test render came out a bit plain. So I decided to add a stream that ended up widening into a river cutting through a canyon. I found the reason for this was since it was a high elevation, and anything coloured pure black will render as water at the lowest possible height. After some trial & error, and a generous helping of Gaussian Blur I quite liked the end result of the jagged cliff edges. I then lowered the Gamma Input Level, added a small lake, and gave the terrain a bit more definition in parts (using the Burn tool, with selected blurring in focussed areas).

    The greyscale:

    02_01-Cloud Greyscale.jpg


    Region preview:

    03_01-Cloud Map.jpg

     

    Cloud Map 2

    Next I thought to use the same cloud formation and try a more basic approach. All I did this time was use about 15.0 of Gaussian Blur, and reduced the Gamma Level to around 0.60, lowering the land. Other than that, keeping the source image untouched:

    04_02-Cloud Greyscale.jpg


    To my surprise, this came out rather well (of course, after experimenting to find the appropriate amount of blur and Level adjustment). As can be seen below, this created a nice waterfront with a bay area. The narrow strip of land connecting the mainland happens to be just wide enough for an avenue. Or equally it'd be tempting to terraform this and allow watercraft into the inlet:

    05_02-Cloud Map.jpg

     

    Another cloud pic:

    06-Cloud Source.jpg

     

    Cloud Map 3

    After the usual procedure, for this I also did some extra editing:

    07_03-Cloud Greyscale.jpg


    The waterway I painted with the Burn tool to deepen the level (using a soft brush to try and replicate an artificial harbour area). Since it fits in better over there, I also moved the mound over to the middle right (cut, paste, smudge and blur). Then also raised it up somewhat and created a cliff face so it looks more interesting / realistic than a flat hill.

    In the upper right, I made the water with a gradient effect to simulate increased depth. There's also a basin type area which would be a prime location for housing with a view of both the south and north:

    08_03-Cloud Map.jpg

     

    One more snapshot of the British summer:

    09-Cloud Source.jpg

     

    Cloud Map 4

    For this I kept it straightforward and followed the pattern of the blue sky to paint the water. First using the textbook method of using the Acrylic brush. Then the Burn tool to make the more gradual elevation change for the river banks:

    10_04-Cloud Greyscale.jpg


    Simple yet effective, and I think the end result ain't too shabby. Especially the cliff face from cutting through the hillside:

    11_04-Cloud Map.jpg

     

    Cloud Map 5

    For this I used the same source image, but thought to mix things up a bit. So I flipped it vertically and rotated clockwise by 90 degrees. Then wondered what would happen by inverting the colours. Sure enough as expected, the lowlands and the highlands exchanged roles:

    12_05-Cloud Greyscale.jpg


    A few nice natural lakes were formed, and it's just asking for a bridge through the middle there:

    13_05-Cloud Map.jpg

    Note: All in game renders show the Appalachian Terrain Mod, with the 'Silt' variation of SHK Brigantine 2.0.


    If they're useful to anyone, here are the source bitmap greyscales:

    CB Cloud Map Greyscales-1.zip  (573KB)

    (Each is 769x769 to create a 3x3 large tile region. The included config.bmp works with all of them.)

     

    One thing I've tried to bear in mind is making the landscape features fit in each tile. This required some minor editing in GIMP using the Smudge Tool with varied levels of Strength/Opacity. Adjusting the Levels really is a very powerful tool, as each increment can completely transform the landscape. I didn't delve into any of the other myriad of tools, but I suspect there are other ways of similarly manipulating the heights.

    Should I release these properly, I'll need to deepen some of the water levels. Without painting water manually, a limitation I've found is the depth may not be great enough to allow ports or other land/water structures to be built. Editing by hand it's tricky to get this right while still preserving the integral shape of the terrain.

    As lots of experimenting was required for the finer editing, I found SC4Terraformer very useful to get an instant preview. This allows each BMP to be imported and viewed in the expected rendered form. You can zoom around and view different elevations, and really get a feel for how everything fits together in the individual tiles. It's also quite accurate I've found when compared to the actual render. But keeping in the spirit of the CORIMAPS method, I only used GIMP for editing, as much as Terraformer would've made the task of refining much, much easier.


    I must say this was a whole lot of fun. With the entire concept, what I find most fascinating is how in terms of patterns and form, nature in the sky somewhat correlates to nature on the ground. You can take a picture of something miles above, yet through some simple editing it can unmistakeably represent terra firma in a world of pixels on a computer screen. So if you're reading this and you haven't already, I'd encourage everyone to give it a try. *:8)

     

    @CorinaMarie

    Speaking of maps, I noticed you've uploaded some splendid new ones with mention to a 'planet generator' method (e.g. Mons Lacus & the Jr edition). Given the innovation of CORIMAPS, I'm really interested what heights your newly discovered technique can reach.

    So, how exactly did you go about that? *:???:

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  • @Cyclone Boom

    Nice maps! I'm happy to see someone else giving this method a try. *:)

     

    10 hours ago, Cyclone Boom said:

    ... the Burn tool to deepen the level (using a soft brush to try and replicate an artificial harbour area). ... (cut, paste, smudge and blur). ... So I flipped it vertically and rotated clockwise by 90 degrees. Then wondered what would happen by inverting the colours. ... the Smudge Tool with varied levels of Strength/Opacity.

    And I see you've experimented with various tools. *:thumb:

     

    10 hours ago, Cyclone Boom said:

    As lots of experimenting was required for the finer editing, I found SC4Terraformer very useful to get an instant preview. This allows each BMP to be imported and viewed in the expected rendered form. You can zoom around and view different elevations, and really get a feel for how everything fits together in the individual tiles. It's also quite accurate I've found when compared to the actual render. But keeping in the spirit of the CORIMAPS method, I only used GIMP for editing, as much as Terraformer would've made the task of refining much, much easier.

    D'aww... that's sweet, but a combination of tools is also in the spirit of this method. *;) Perhaps the clouds and preliminary tweaking in GIMP would be a good base to start from and then use Terraformer for the final touches.  I'd say whatever method gives the best end results is the way to go. (I wrote this guide originally for peeps who cannot run any of the 3 major mapping programs.)

     

    10 hours ago, Cyclone Boom said:

    I must say this was a whole lot of fun.

    Woot! I'm glad to hear this and maybe a few other peeps who've said they might give it a try will post their creations here too. *:yes:

     

    10 hours ago, Cyclone Boom said:

    Speaking of maps, I noticed you've uploaded some splendid new ones with mention to a 'planet generator' method (e.g. Mons Lacus & the Jr edition). Given the innovation of CORIMAPS, I'm really interested what heights your newly discovered technique can reach.

    So, how exactly did you go about that? *:???:

    That would be the Planet Map Generator. I used the online version for those two maps. Here's the initial screen when you go there:

    5978910c37648_01InitialWebScreen.jpg.498061e35ca5123797e1e4bf9230df33.jpg

     

    Then I adjusted these settings:

    • Seed = 14937910
    • Width = 1000
    • Height = 499
    • Projection = Square
    • Colour Map = Greyscale

    And then clicked the Make Map button:

    597891719014e_02ChangeParameters.jpg.bba047e0702995a45c8e4cf0cfb357c6.jpg

     

    Next I right clicked in the image and said: Save Image As:

    597891980cbe4_03SaveAs.jpg.de42423610d0d734701080bffbc89632.jpg

     

    I entered the seed number as my file name so I'd know what I'd used if I wanted to re-generate it:

    597891cc6c20c_04SaveFileName.jpg.31c6a7e99073b30a70c5ef5fcbd06716.jpg

     

    Then I pulled it up in GIMP:

    597891ead3e2c_05OpeninGIMP.jpg.1aa4a80a4bae9d96f52c4209ea564408.jpg

     

    Scaled it to 2049 x 2049:

    5978920a71de1_06ScaleImage.jpg.53ea010eb10139260ce1893e943c7211.jpg

     

    Added Gaussian Blur of 15.0:

    597892264c5a7_07GaussianBlur.jpg.113ed2b3b5116552a4604d4a3a8eb8dc.jpg

     

    Adjusted color levels to 0.63:

    59789247685bf_08ColorLevels.jpg.2bd317331252a158b8d87786cc27d58e.jpg

     

    Converted it to true Grayscale:

    59789268bde35_09MakeGrayscale.jpg.33880359f8667805bf3f61bc8ba70dde.jpg

     

    And I saved it by overwriting the original since I'd already experimented and found all the numbers to use for tweaking:

    597892a04a94f_10Overwrite.jpg.8a45f8864f0066fda63b6ac8410ec70d.jpg

     

    Then I selected if for rendering in the game:

    597892ceeed46_11SelectFileinGame.jpg.b3bf78f1f9c08a34ad2e0fd2679449b0.jpg

    ^ Yes, it's in another folder for writing this up since I already have my Mons Lacus which I'm playing. *;)

     

    Then I waited whilst it did this:

    597893117b30f_12WaitWhileitRenders.jpg.679902fba44f2229a1c306bce2305b35.jpg

     

    And here it is when it finished:

    5978932c25f2e_13RegionasSeeninGame.jpg.d6605fd10eb503027d25b63df5300814.jpg

     

    Using the Region Census program, here's the whole thing:

    5978935c7ca40_63RV.thumb.jpg.38b72d1e3e839e3fdff005f7234f6f84.jpg

     

    And the final version with Maxis Trees:

    04-14937910.jpg.466d2a952f66d70246695d62

     

    Subsequent to making those two maps I've downloaded the offline version. It doesn't have the limitations of the online one and I've discovered even more cool stuff I can do with it. It's funny you asked about this cause I've actually been working on a front end script to generate bunches of random maps to make it easier to select the best seed numbers to use. Also, I've created my own custom color table to closely resemble the topography map in the mini map of the All Off and Zones data views in game. (I find that useful for planning the overall major transportation network.)

    Here's a sample of that for a different map I've uploaded to the STEX:

    942669825-(6x6Lg)-04-SC4Topo-1.jpg.3538c

     

    So, I wonder if a new tutorial topic for the offline version of Planet Map Generator would be of interest to anyone?

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    Wow, that's seriously cool. Thanks for the detailed explanation. *:)

    That looks like a really powerful method, creating such a realistic and varied terrain all still without requiring fancy editing. For one I'm now already familiar with GIMP's blur & level adjustments, so as with editing clouds it appears equally straightforward.

     

    11 hours ago, CorinaMarie said:

    So, I wonder if a new tutorial topic for the offline version of Planet Map Generator would be of interest to anyone?

    If the online version is anything to go by, I'm sure it would be of great interest. I particularly like the sound of a batch generation method, as inspiration isn't always easy to find in plentiful supply. With a program doing the hard yards, it'd provide an excellent platform to later add any finer details. I've always thought fantasy maps are great because there's no rules, and the sky is quite literally the limit to creativity.

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    Cori, quite awhile ago you had made a table showing the grey scale dimensions for a variety of large tile map sizes.   I don't have a copy of, I think you PM'd it to me, but can't find it.  The table made it easy to look up the correct dimensions for the grey scale for rendering maps in various large tile configurations.   If you know the one I mean and still have it, can you post it here as it would be a useful resource.

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    Thanks, that's the one.   Its really weird just after I wrote the request I followed you to the thread you were reading about regions loading too slow and it was right there too!   Good to have it here now as in this thread are many resources specific to map making.  Its good to have this thread fro general reference. So thanks again.  *:thumb:

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  • 8 hours ago, RandyE said:

    Its really weird just after I wrote the request I followed you to the thread you were reading ...

    Not weird at all. I'd bookmarked my post there in case I ever wanted to re-find the table so as soon as I read your post I went there, copied the linky to the image, and popped back in here to post it. *;)

    Edit: If you want your own offline copy of it, feel free to right-click and do a Save As...

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    11 hours ago, CorinaMarie said:

    Edit: If you want your own offline copy of it, feel free to right-click and do a Save As...

    Going a bit further... I am going to make a set of blank regions each with their own blank indexed greyscale bitmaps, I'll make between 4-8 of some of the more common sizes.  The greyscales will be blank so the download won't be too big.  

    I'll add a couple of versions with coastlines and water connections, but no mountains --all on lowest flat terrain.   So I need the smoothest gradient from water to land that will allow placing water transportation anywhere, but will also allow placing seawalls where desired. 

    Then there's the problem of rail and road bridges creating those ugly humps.  The rail lines are difficult to get high enough to allow ferries to pass under.   Any and all ideas on this project are welcome and appreciated.   What common region sizes do you think would be best?   Large Tiles: 1x1, 2x2, 3x2, 4x4, etc.

    Oh most importantly, can I include your table in my upload package --with credit of course, or should I just link to your post above?

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  • 1 hour ago, RandyE said:

    So I need the smoothest gradient from water to land that will allow placing water transportation anywhere, but will also allow placing seawalls where desired.

    I haven't tested with sea walls, but if you've rendered any of my recent maps on the STEX and you like how the shore to water is for placing seaports and ferries and such, here's the code I'm using for that. (This is part of a secondary loop thru every pixel after the Guassian Blur routine.)

    if (FinalMap[i][j] == SEA - 0) FinalMap[i][j] -= 3;
    if (FinalMap[i][j] == SEA - 1) FinalMap[i][j] -= 4;
    if (FinalMap[i][j] == SEA - 2) FinalMap[i][j] -= 5;
    if (FinalMap[i][j] <= SEA - 3) FinalMap[i][j] -= 6;

    As my limited testing showed if I let it just taper off gradually the water wasn't deep enough at the shore to place those docks. (And yes, I know I don't have to subtract zero, but it makes the code line up prettier.)

    The other thing to watch for if you are doing more than one city tile is that land at 84 and to some extent at 85 will develop weird sand/water puddles at the borders.

     

    1 hour ago, RandyE said:

    Then there's the problem of rail and road bridges creating those ugly humps.

    Somewhere I've seen what height the ferries need. With that number of meters divided by 3 plus, say, 84 for fully above water would give the grayscale color needed to prevent the humps. Now, it doesn't need to be that height right at the shoreline. It can be further back and the terrain tapers down to each shore. You can then build the bridge with the end parts being over the land and just the middle over water.

     

    1 hour ago, RandyE said:

    What common region sizes do you think would be best?   Large Tiles: 1x1, 2x2, 3x2, 4x4, etc.

    I agree with using only large tiles. I'm pretty sure that's what most everyone wants. As for how many, it'll really depend on what the person downloading wants if for. Is it a quick map to safely test some new content? Then 1x1 large tile would load the fastest. Otherwise I'm not really sure what to recommend. From my experience checking download numbers of my STEX maps the larger the region the higher the download count. I suspect the reason is that if someone is going to spend months building up a region they don't want to suddenly find they are out of room.

     

    1 hour ago, RandyE said:

    Oh most importantly, can I include your table in my upload package --with credit of course, or should I just link to your post above?

    Yes, ofc. Feel free to include it directly. Linking to it is just another hassle for someone and it has the possibility of disappearing. As I mentioned before when you were writing your guide and using a few of my images, just put them in there directly. The goal is for it to be as convenient for the end user as possible. Everything I post here on ST is free to use however anyone wants including posting it on another site as long as I'm given credit for the creation of it. I just don't see any reason to try to protect something I'm already giving away. *;)

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    Thanks for the info Cori, I'll reference back here.  I'm going to start with one large tile with a straight coastline and just break it down layer by layer going through the vertical pixels one at a time.  So I'll generate a test sample of the results and post it here.   So this will be done in plain vanilla no mods, but I hope at least determining the baselines will help.  Then I'll try to get the minimal heights for transport and seawall placement, ferry height, and minimal for rail and road bridges.   The only user content used will be the Stanley Seawalls.   So the objective I mentioned before is being able to 'draw' a region like using a pencil.   That Guassian Blur filter is quite the miracle worker for smoothing between the lines.    I think the water placements prefer a bit of a vertical 'cliff' to hang off and I've noticed the ferries especially like to be as far out over water as possible else the automata won't appear.

    23 minutes ago, CorinaMarie said:

    The goal is for it to be as convenient for the end user as possible. Everything I post here on ST is free to use however anyone wants including posting it on another site as long as I'm given credit for the creation of it. I just don't see any reason to try to protect something I'm already giving away. *;)

    Thanks.   I'll have to write another mini tutorial on how to use it, so that will give me another excuse to make more HTML *:yes: 

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    16 hours ago, RandyE said:

    I'll try to get the minimal heights for transport and seawall placement, ferry height, and minimal for rail and road bridges

    I saw mention somewhere recently that UDI also has a minimum depth of water for boats not to run aground.

    I don't know if anyone cares about UDI (I gave up on it because I just can't train my fingers to operate the controls correctly), but I thought I'd add it to your list of elevation-sensitive game features.

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    2 hours ago, jeffryfisher said:

    I just can't train my fingers to operate the controls correctly

    Me neither. I just gave up on them although I know I'm giving up a lot of goodies. Must try those missions somewhere though.

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    • Similar Content

      • By tariely
        Tariel-Kazuki Street Stalls v1 & v2
         
        I recenty uploaded the lost original, which I have been using liberally for years. With some problems, though, that I thought would be nice to save new users from, like missing props ; also, the pieces were not lighted, which is my personal bugaboo. Last but not least, I would have liked the v2 pieces to have some indication of direction, therefore I added some SPOT arrows in my relot.
        So here is a new version of Kazuki’s lots, trying to solve those little problems. I just licked them up and lit them and gave them new menu icons. All Hail goes to Kazuki for making them in the first place.
        You don’t need the original but it’s here.
        Those are neutral lots, eyecandy only.
        _____________________
        Dependencies :
         
        BSC_MegaProps_Gascooker_vol1.dat
        http://sc4devotion.com/csxlex/lex_filedesc.php?lotGET=397
        NetworkAddonMod_Props.dat :
        In NAM 32 and up
        PorkieProps-Vol1.dat
        http://community.simtropolis.com/files/file/11421-porkie-props-vol1-european-street-accessories/
        PorkieProps-Vol2.dat :
        https://community.simtropolis.com/files/file/11420-porkie-props-vol2-seasonal-street-trees/
        RVTNightlights (included)
        SPOT_C-rc100.dat (for plopping directions)
        https://community.simtropolis.com/files/file/24509-spot/
        Tamorr_Family_Prop_v1.dat
        in Tamorr’s Resource 2.05 :
        http://community.simtropolis.com/files/file/21940-tamorrs-resource/
        wmp_power_props01.dat  in WMP Power Lots :
        http://community.simtropolis.com/files/file/26376-wmp-power-lots/
      • By tariely
        I recenty uploaded the lost original, which I have been using liberally for years. With some problems, though, that I thought would be nice to save new users from. (1) the bus stop never showed up, (2) neither did the dirt circle for the trees (the original used the Invisible One…) ; (3) they were not well lighted, which is my personal bugaboo. Also, last but not least, (4) I never knew exactly on which side the street barriers were, and had to re-plop several times to get them right.
        So here is a new version of those Kazuki lots, trying to solve all those problems, with a little bit of SPOT to help with the plopping. All Hail goes to Kazuki for making them in the first place.I just licked them up and lighted them and gave them new menu icons.
        You don’t need the original but it’s here.
        NB : if you have a Sandstone Mod, it will replace the Maxis pavement.
        NB2 : In case you are wondering, no, the bus stop is not functional, sorry. It is now !
        ------------- 
        BSC_MEGA-Props-CP Vol01.dat :
        http://sc4devotion.com/csxlex/lex_filedesc.php?lotGET=1180
        Murimk stands-simple.dat :
        https://community.simtropolis.com/files/file/25681-murimk-bicycle-props-with-mmp-bikers/
        JENXPARIS_Prop_Pack_VOl02.dat :
        http://sc4devotion.com/csxlex/lex_filedesc.php?lotGET=1612
        NetworkAddonMod_Props.dat : In NAM 32 and up
        PorkieProps-Vol1.dat :
        http://community.simtropolis.com/files/file/11421-porkie-props-vol1-european-street-accessories/
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        https://community.simtropolis.com/files/file/11420-porkie-props-vol2-seasonal-street-trees/
        RVTNightlights (included)
        SG_BusStop04.dat (if you’re not already using SG Bus Stops. Which maybe you should. They’re about the only ones reasonably to scale, with WMP’s and the RTMT) : in SG Bus Stops :
        http://sc4devotion.com/csxlex/lex_filedesc.php?lotGET=1618
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        https://community.simtropolis.com/files/file/24509-spot/
         
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        in Tamorr’s Resource 2.05
        http://community.simtropolis.com/files/file/21940-tamorrs-resource/
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      • By Cougar2004
        Purpose
        This mod fixes a problem with the default Maxis Space Port, which claims it "Provides a boost to high-tech industry" however, it does not. Maxis forgot to include this boost, therefore it boosts nothing but costs and some slight commercial desirability.
         
        This mod fixes that. A significant yet realistic (non-radical) boost to High Tech Industry is now provided. Placing the Space Port now provides 150,000 High-Tech Industry Cap Relief. This is well within the range of other similar buildings such as the Advanced Research Center, University, and Marina.
         
        Alternate Version
        For those who feel the default Maxis Space Port uses far too much power for its size and function, a second Mod file is provided in this download. In addition to fixing the High-Tech Boost, this ALT Mod version lowers power requirements from the default 700 to 219. This should allow most cities to stay safely under the power abilities of a single power plant with the Space Port placed.
         
        Additionally, the included ALT Mod version also increases the Space Port from 100 R$ Jobs to a more realistic spread of 8 R$, 104 R$$, and 16 R$$$, to cover the range of employees from Astronauts down to Janitorial staff. Water consumed is decreased slightly from 360 to 248. Monthly Cost is lowered from $400/mo to $300/mo. And Bulldoze Cost of $4200 is now $3900. No other changes have been made to how the Space Port looks or functions.
         
        Files Included - ( *** USE ONLY ONE of these *** )
        - 'SpacePort Fix Mod.dat' (Fix only)
        - 'SpacePort Fix Alt Mod.dat' (Fix + some additional changes)
        Compatibility
        SimCity 4 Deluxe or Rush Hour Required for this Mod.
        This mod is safe to use with all other known Mods released as of this date on the STEX. (The AC Functional Airports Mod found at SC4Devotion.com modds this building in a large pack, so you may only use this Mod or that one.)
        Dependencies
        None.
         
        Additional Notes:
        See included ReadMe.txt for Installation, Uninstall, and further details.
        Impact of this Mod will only be seen when you have met all SC4 requirements for High-Tech Industry and have placed the Space Port (from Rewards Menu) in your city, with this Mod installed.
      • By Cougar2004
        Have you ever wondered if you should use an Ordinance in your game?  ...but didn't know what it really did?  The bad effects?  Total Costs?  Benefits?  Seek no further!  The answers are now here.  (If this thread helps you, Bookmark it to find it again, or reply with your thoughts.)
        This thread was inspired by ideas and requests found in a thread titled: The Worst Ordinances ever (Poll Included)  "Which are the worst Sim City 4 ordinances and why?" 
        After much research, Here is a Complete List of Ordinances and their Secrets!  I have chosen to divide these into 12 categories for ease of use.  Choosing which ordinance to use depends on what you want / need in your current city.  (Feel free to discuss anything about these, mention anything missing or mistaken.  This list will be updated with corrections as needed.)  Enjoy~!

        Ordinances of SimCity 4 Deluxe / Rush Hour (20)
        This is a complete list of Ordinances and their details as found in the Sim City 4 Deluxe game.

        Crime
        Junior Sports Programs  ($100/mo + $0.005 per $ in the park & rec budget)
             Requirement: Must have at least 1 park structure.
             Benefit: Crime globally reduced by 5%

        Neighboorhood Watch  ($10/mo + $0.001 per resident)
             Requirement: Must have at least 1 police structure.
             Benefit: Crime globally reduced by 5%

        Youth Curfew Act  ($40/mo + $0.002 per resident)
             Benefit: Crime globally reduced by 5%
             Bad Effect: Mayor Rating reduced by 10pts

        Legalize Gambling  ($100/mo INCOME)
             Benefit: Allows possibility of a Casino Business Deal
             Bad Effect: Crime globally increased by 20%

        Demand
        Clean Air Act  ($20/mo + $0.005 per resident)
             Benefit: Air Pollution globally reduced by 10%
             Bad Effect (or Benefit): Dirty Industry Demand reduced by 5% (Experts say its actually only 0.33%.)

        Nuclear Free Zone  ($50/mo + $0.002 per resident)
             Benefit: Mayor Rating increased by 5pts
             Benefit: Farm Demand increased by 0.33%
             Bad Effect: High-Tech Industry Demand reduced by 0.17%
             Bad Effect: Forces removal of Nuclear Power Plants, restricts building new ones

        Paper Waste Reduction Program  ($20/mo + $0.005 per resident)
             Benefit: Garbage output reduced by 10%
             Bad Effect: Commercial $$ Office Demand reduced by 5% (Experts say its only 0.33%)
             Bad Effect: Commercial $$$ Office Demand reduced by 5% (Experts say its only 0.17%)

        Power Conservation Act  ($0/mo + $0.005/mo per resident)
             Benefit: Power consumption globally reduced by 10%
             Benefit: Power Neighbor Deal Costs reduced by 10%
             Bad Effect: All Industry Demand (except Farms) reduced by 5% (Experts say its actually only 0.50%)
             Bad Effect: Mayor Rating reduced by 10pts (Experts say this does not happen at all so 0%)
             Bad Effect: Lifespan of Power Plants reduced by 10% (Experts say this does not happen at all so 0%)

        Tourism Promotion Program  ($50/mo + $0.005 per $ in the Landmark budget)
             Benefit: All Commercial Service Demand increased by 2% (Experts say its actually only 0.33%)

        Water Conservation Program  ($50/mo + $0.005 per resident)
             Benefit: Water consumption globally reduced by 10%
             Bad Effect: All Industry Demand reduced by 5% (Farms by 10%) (Experts say its actually as follows on the next 4 lines:
             Bad Effect: Farms Demand reduced by 0.83%
             Bad Effect: Dirty Industry Demand reduced by 0.50%
             Bad Effect: Manufacturing Industry Demand reduced by 0.33%
             Bad Effect: High-Tech Industry Demand reduced by 0.17%)

        Education
        Pro Reading Campaign  ($50/mo + $0.005 per $ total citywide monthly Library funding) (Experts say its actually $20/mo + $0.005 per $ total citywide monthly Library funding)
             Benefit: Education Quotient increased by 10%

        Fire (Flammability)
        Smoke Detector Program  ($0/mo + $0.001/mo per resident)
             Benefit: Flammability globally reduced by 5%

        Garbage
        Paper Waste Reduction Program  ($20/mo + $0.005 per resident)
             Benefit: Garbage output reduced by 10%
             Bad Effect: Commercial $$ Office Demand reduced by 5% (Experts say its actually only 0.33%)
             Bad Effect: Commercial $$$ Office Demand reduced by 5% (Experts say its actually only 0.17%)

        Tire Recycling Program  ($20/mo + $0.001 per resident)
             Benefit: Garbage output reduced by 3%

        Trash Presort Requirement  ($26/mo for first Recycling Center + $1 for each additional one) (Experts say its actually $20/mo + $0.003 per resident) 
             Requirement: Must have at least 1 Recycling Center.
             Benefit: Garbage output reduced by 3%

        Health
        Community CPR Training Program  ($50/mo + $0.005 per resident)
             Benefit: Health Quotient globally increased by 10%

        Free Clinic Program  ($50/mo + $0.005 per each $ of Medical Clinic funding)
             Benefit: Health Quotient globally increased by 10%

        Mayor Rating
        Automobile Emission Reduction Act  ($20/mo + $0.05 per resident)
             Benefit: Air Pollution globally reduced by 10%
             Bad Effect:  Mayor Rating reduced by 5pts

        Nuclear Free Zone  ($50/mo + $0.002 per resident)
             Benefit: Mayor Rating increased by 5pts
             Benefit: Farm Demand increased by 0.33%
             Bad Effect: High-Tech Industry Demand reduced by 0.17%
             Bad Effect: Forces removal of Nuclear Power Plants, restricts building new ones

        Power Conservation Act  ($0/mo + $0.005/mo per resident)
             Benefit: Power consumption globally reduced by 10%
             Benefit: Power Neighbor Deal Costs reduced by 10%
             Bad Effect: All Industry Demand (except Farms) reduced by 5% (Experts say its actually only 0.50%)
             Bad Effect: Mayor Rating reduced by 10pts (Experts say this does not happen at all so 0%)
             Bad Effect: Lifespan of Power Plants reduced by 10% (Experts say this does not happen at all so 0%)

        Youth Curfew Act  ($40/mo + $0.002 per resident)
             Benefit: Crime globally reduced by 5%
             Bad Effect: Mayor Rating reduced by 10pts

        Legalize Gambling  ($100/mo INCOME!)
             Benefit: Allows possibility of a Casino Business Deal
             Bad Effect: Crime globally increased by 20%

        Pollution
        Automobile Emission Reduction Act  ($20/mo + $0.05 per resident)
             Benefit: Air Pollution globally reduced by 10%
             Bad Effect:  Mayor Rating reduced by 5pts

        Clean Air Act  ($20/mo + $0.005 per resident)
             Benefit: Air Pollution globally reduced by 10%
             Bad Effect (or Benefit): Dirty Industry Demand reduced by 5% (Experts say its actually only 0.33%.)

        Commuter Shuttle Service  ($20/mo + $0.005 per resident)
             Benefit: Air Pollution globally reduced by 2%
             Benefit: Mass Transportation use increased by 5% for R$, 14% for R$$, 33% for R$$$
             Benefit: Car Traffic reduced by 25% for R$, No change for R$$, 6% for R$$$

        Landfill Gas Recovery Program  ($20/mo + $50 per landfill tile) (Experts say its actually $20/mo + $0.001 per resident)
             Requirement: Must have at least 1 operating Landfill and at least 1 Gas Power Plant
             Benefit: Air Pollution globally reduced by 3%
             Benefit: Gas Power Plant Efficiency increased (Experts say this does not happen at all)

        Power
        Landfill Gas Recovery Program  ($20/mo + $50 per landfill tile) (Experts say its actually $20 + $0.001 per resident)
             Requirement: Must have at least 1 operating Landfill and at least 1 Gas Power Plant
             Benefit: Air Pollution globally reduced by 3%
             Benefit: Gas Power Plant Efficiency increased (Experts say this does not happen at all)

        Power Conservation Act  ($0/mo + $0.005/mo per resident)
             Benefit: Power consumption globally reduced by 10%
             Benefit: Power Neighbor Deal Costs reduced by 10%
             Bad Effect: All Industry Demand (except Farms) reduced by 5% (Experts say its actually only 0.50%)
             Bad Effect: Mayor Rating reduced by 10pts (Experts say this does not happen at all so 0%)
             Bad Effect: Lifespan of Power Plants reduced by 10% (Experts say this does not happen at all so 0%)

        Traffic
        Carpool Incentive Program  ($50/mo + $0.01 per resident)
             Benefit: Traffic congestion (volume) decreased by 20% (Experts say this does not happen at all so 0%.)

        Commuter Shuttle Service  ($20/mo + $0.005 per resident)
             Benefit: Air Pollution globally reduced by 2%
             Benefit: Mass Transportation use increased by 5% for R$, 14% for R$$, 33% for R$$$
             Benefit: Car Traffic reduced by 25% for R$, No change for R$$, 6% for R$$$

        Water
        Water Conservation Program  ($50/mo + $0.005 per resident)
             Benefit: Water consumption globally reduced by 10%
             Bad Effect: All Industry Demand reduced by 5% (Farms by 10%) (Experts say its actually as follows on the next 4 lines:
             Bad Effect: Farms Demand reduced by 0.83%
             Bad Effect: Dirty Industry Demand reduced by 0.50%
             Bad Effect: Manufacturing Industry Demand reduced by 0.33%
             Bad Effect: High-Tech Industry Demand reduced by 0.17%)

        Note: Experts say that each of these costs the small amount of $10 or $20 to enact and $10 or $20 to retract. However, I have not experienced this.

        Available Ordinance Mods List  (7)
        - Radical Ordinance V2.0 - Extreme ordinance benefit boost (considered a cheat by most)
        - Buggi's Super Demand Ordinance - Causes serious Demand Increase to grow your city huge. (considered a cheat by most)
        - RJ - Super Demand Ordinances - Separated - Changes half the ordinances to High Demand ordinances [Learn More] (considered a cheat by most)
        - RJ - Super Demand Ordinance - Farming - Changes one ordinance into a High Farm Demand ordinance [Learn More] (considered a cheat by most)
        - RJ - Reset Maxis Ordinances - Remove all mods, put this in, and it restores all Default Ordinances [Learn More] (considered a cheat by most)
        - Lottery Program - Turns one ordinanceinto a Lottery Income Ordinance (considered a cheat by most)
        - Cousin Vinnie Ordinance - Gives $200,000/mo with no negative effects (considered a cheat by most)
        - (More coming soon...)

        EA/Maxis Unfinished Ordinances  (26)
        Aerospace Incentive
        Alternate Driving Days
        Backyard Composting
        BioTech Incentive
        Bridge Tolls (INCOME)
        Center Line Maintenance
        Clean Industry Association
        Conservation Corps
        Crossing Guards
        Earthquake Preparation
        Electronics Job Fair
        Farmers Market
        Industry Pollution Fee (INCOME)
        Industrial Waste Disposal
        Lawn Chemical Ban
        Leaf Burning Ban
        Municiple Services
        Parking Fines (INCOME)
        Police Outreach
        Public Access Cable
        Shelters
        Smoking Ban
        Stairwell Lighting
        Subsidized Transit
        Water Meters
        Water Tower Ads (INCOME)

        User-Suggested Possible New Ordinances (13)
        Agricultural Pesticide Ban  (Cost $20/mo + $0.01 per Farm Job)
             Requirement: Must have at least 1 profitable Farm.
             Benefit: Water Pollution reduced by 10%
             Benefit: Health Quotient globally increased by 5%
             Bad Effect: Farms demand reduced by 2%
        Animal Cruelty Humane Society  (Cost: $50/mo + $5 per clinic/hospital)
             Benefit: Mayor Rating increased by 5pts
             Benefit: Crime globally reduced by 5%
        City/Region Lottery  ($100/mo INCOME + $0.001 per resident)
             Benefit: Mayor Rating increased by 5pts
             Bad Effect: Crime globally increased by 10%
        Condo/Hotel/Resort Program ($200/mo INCOME + $0.015 per R$$ and R$$$ resident)
               Benefit: Mayor Rating increased by 5pts
               Benefit: All Commercial Service Demand increased by 4% (Experts may suggest it only be 0.66%)
        Clean Water Act  (Cost $20/mo + $0.005 per resident)
             Benefit: Water Pollution reduced by 10%
             Benefit: Health Quotient globally increased by 5%
             Bad Effect (or Benefit): Dirty Industry Demand reduced by 5% 
        Double Parking Fines  ($20/mo INCOME + $0.001 per resident)
             Benefit: Mass Transportation use increased by 5% for R$, 2% for R$$, 1% for R$$$
             Benefit: Car Traffic reduced by 5% for R$, 2% for R$$, 1% for R$$$
             Bad Effect: Mayor Rating reduced by 5pts
        Financial Bailout Legislation  ($100/mo + $10 per government building)
             Requirement: Must have at least 1 government building.
             Benefit: All Commercial Demand increased by 0.83%
             Benefit: All Industrial Demand increased by 0.83%
             Bad Effect: Mayor Rating reduced by 10pts
             Bad Effect: Crime globally increased by 5%
             Bad Effect: Education Quotient globally decreased by 5%
             Bad Effect: Air Pollution globally increased by 1%
        Honor System Mass Transit Fare Collection ($100/mo + $0.1 per station)
               Benefit: Mass Transportation use increased by 50% for R$, 25% for R$$, 10% for R$$$
               Benefit: Maintenance costs of Mass Transportation Networks decreased by 10%
               Bad Effect: Mass Transportation revenue decreased by 20%
               Bad Effect: Crime globally increased by 10% [Fare Evaders]
        Jewelry Tax  ($20/mo INCOME + $0.1 per R$$$ resident)
             Bad Effect: Crime globally increased by 2%
             Bad Effect: Residential $$$ Demand reduced by 5% (Experts may suggest it only be 0.33%)
        Medical Reformation Act  ($10/mo + $10 per clinic/hospital)
             Benefit: Health Quotient globally increased by 15%
             Bad Effect: Mayor Rating decreased by 5pts
             Bad Effect: Commercial $ and $$ Office Demand reduced by 15% (Nurses) (Experts may suggest it only be 1%)
             Bad Effect: Commercial $$$ Office Demand reduced by 15% (Doctors) (Experts may suggest it only be 0.5%)
        Parking Meters  ($20/mo INCOME + $0.001 per resident)
             Benefit: Mass Transportation use increased by 5% for R$, 2% for R$$, 1% for R$$$
             Benefit: Car Traffic reduced by 5% for R$, 2% for R$$, 1% for R$$$
             Bad Effect: Mayor Rating reduced by 5pts
        Space Exploration Program  (Cost: $100/mo + $0.01 per I-HT Job)
             Requirement: Must have at least 1500 High-Tech Industry Jobs.
             Benefit: High-Tech Industry Demand increased by 10% (Experts may suggest it only be 0.83%)
             Benefit: Manufacturing Industry Demand increased by 2% (Experts may suggest it only be 0.33%)
        Universal Healthcare  ($100/mo + $0.01 per resident)
            Requirement: Must have at least 2 Hospitals.
             Benefit: Mayor Rating increased by 5pts
             Benefit: Commercial $ and $$ Office Demand increased by 15% (Nurses) (Experts may suggest it only be 1%)
             Benefit: Commercial $$$ Office Demand increased by 15% (Doctors) (Experts may suggest it only be 0.5%)
             Bad Effect: Health Quotient globally decreased by 15%
      • By SharkD
        I'm interested in emulating SimCity terrain generation for a LEGO project I am working on. Could someone explain the differences between SC3K and SC4 terrain?
        IIRC, SC3K has three vertical slope levels, and can only model right angles and 45 degree angles. How are things different in SC4? Does SC4 also limit you in this way?
        Thanks.
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