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Crusader, Warchest, & Extreme: General Discussion & Help
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Stronghold 2 » Forums » Crusader, Warchest, & Extreme: General Discussion & Help » Stronghold Crusader map file format
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Topic Subject:Stronghold Crusader map file format
InstantMuffin
Archer
posted 07-27-17 09:34 EST (US)         
Greetings my Lords,

I'm interested in writing a terrain generator for Stronghold Crusader. I have previously written one for the Source Engine and would love to take my experiences and apply them to Stronghold Crusader, so people can easily generate maps using different specifics.

Issue is I have no idea how the map files are structured. I know there is a software called "Stronghold PNG Generator" that seems to be able to read and draw map files, however, I can't reach the developer. After all the tool is like 15 years old.

Hopefully someone else can either point me towards him or share the file format specifications.

Unfortunately the FireFly support team was not allowed to fulfill my request and instead redirected me here.

Crusader Lord InstantMuffin
AuthorReplies:
EaglePrince
Archer
posted 07-29-17 07:56 EST (US)     1 / 6       
Hi. The Stronghold Map PNGer may not actually work as you might want it to. It may not access the map entirely, but only its preview - which is being displayed in the map editor, or in other places within the game.

I don't know if anyone has done something helpful for your goal.

And I don't want to discourage you, but I think making such a tool for Stronghold may not find a practical use. There are so many custom maps in addition to the many original ones. Plus, you would have to deal with many problems which you wouldn't have in Age of Empires or Empire Earth maybe. Here you need to have enough space around the keep, rivers and seas are not crossable, etc. (unless you make passages). You have cliffs as another potential problem as well.

But on the other hand, something like this could be interesting for those who like perfectly balanced maps!
InstantMuffin
Archer
posted 07-29-17 16:25 EST (US)     2 / 6       
Hmm that makes sense, I totally forgot about the previews.
I know there's a lot of challenges ahead, but I have a hard time finding maps that are close to the original style. Many maps are either balanced and/or have a paint-brushy style which is not what I want for a 7vs1 when I try to play against bots.
EaglePrince
Archer
posted 07-30-17 04:50 EST (US)     3 / 6       
I'm not sure what you mean by paint-brushy? You mean the landscape doesn't look natural enough, or as the creator didn't want to bother with tiny details, and you can see the exact borders between different types of terrain? Something like that? If that's the case, there are so many maps that look better than the original ones. Right now I'm on vacation, but when I get home I could share with you the list of the maps the I liked.

By the way, what could be useful might be a tool which could copy one quarter of the map to the other four corners (together with all needed rotations, etc.). That would be great for making perfectly balanced maps. Though it doesn't sound like something you would want.
InstantMuffin
Archer
posted 07-30-17 14:37 EST (US)     4 / 6       
All of the above.
I'd love if you would share your list of maps.

Also, that is partially what I want. There would be no effort implementing a mirroring/symmetry feature, the issue is understanding and writing the map data itself.
Timballisto
Archer
posted 07-31-17 21:06 EST (US)     5 / 6       
I took a shot at deciphering it a while ago in this thread: http://stronghold.heavengames.com/cgi-bin/forum/display.cgi?action=ct&f=4,3925,60,10000

It doesn't seem like the format is straightforward.
Unfortunately the FireFly support team was not allowed to fulfill my request and instead redirected me here.
Ha! So something like this: "Oh, well, actually, we're not really allowed to tell you that, buuuuuut on a completely unrelated note, check out this website called Stronghold Heaven.

-DOOMBRINGER-
"DOOMBRINGER, make a parking space IMMEDIATELY!"
"DOOMBRINGER declares it to be SO!"
"DOOMBRINGER, I command you to lay siege to THE ISS!"

[This message has been edited by Timballisto (edited 07-31-2017 @ 09:10 PM).]

EaglePrince
Archer
posted 08-01-17 07:24 EST (US)     6 / 6       
All of the above.
I'd love if you would share your list of maps.

Also, that is partially what I want. There would be no effort implementing a mirroring/symmetry feature, the issue is understanding and writing the map data itself.
Regarding the maps, I'll give you a reply in free days once I'm back from my vacation. It will be during the weekend.

But you can also check the downloads section again, and try searching for maps by rating, or by download times, etc. And once you see a good map, have a look at the rest of the maps made by that map maker. There are many great makers or there. Check Sir_Vet for example.

And regarding your main question. It would be really useful to have that mirroring thing for making perfectly balanced maps.

You can also check some maps which I submitted, because I also like fighting against six or seven AI lords.

Also, if you want, we could try to play a game against six AI lords together. That can be fun.
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