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Kingdom of Aelfheim Terraforming
Topic Rating: +12 (12 votes) 
October 24, 2014
12:30 pm
LightWarriorK
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Given that it's been two months since my last full post on the matter (despite update edits to the post above), and given that since then I've vomited over 800,000 cobble onto Aelfheim, I figured it would be a good time to actually post a bit on how I'm doing.

  • The pillars are filled, which will be solid columns inside the caverns.  They're really minimal guides, though....the caverns themselves are going to extremely varied, so I'll be filling in more cobble around them as the caverns are formed.
  • Backfilling is complete, as you can see in the final pic of the last post.  Basically that was everything that I could fill that didn't require terrain sculpting....essentially it was the "easy stuff."
  • Sloping is underway, I'm about a quarter of the way around the bluff...or whatever I'm going to call this landform....Hill? Mountain?  Plateau?

But the main reason I'm posting now (as opposed to when the next phase is started, cavern sculpting) is because I have enough of the Sloping done that I can show it off, so you all can see the extent of my madness.

 Check it out.

Now, compare that with the pics above.  Notice the intent of this step: to fill in the land, raise it up, and bring the slopes up to the level of the vertical walls.  And yes, it's solid.  In some places in these filled areas, the cobble is 20-30 blocks deep.  I'm doing this 2 layers at a time, first doing the slope edge, and then filling them in, working in as much variation as I can.  You can also see some grass peeking through in some spots, where I decided the existing terrain was sufficient.

I think it's going rather well.

 

However, now comes the second part of this post, and feedback will be appreciated.

I'm (not surprisingly) running out of cobblestone.

Now, I DO have some places where the caverns will be carved out and made much deeper, but that will take time to gather...and I'd rather silk touch that so I can use the smooth stone for the cavern sculpting.

So, I will soon be building a shop in New Glacia.  It's purpose will be to BUY COBBLE.  I know a lot of people have way too much, and many people trash or burn it, so this may be an alternative.  I'm planning on buying the cobble for 1s per stack.  I don't feel that is too cheap, really, but I'm open to thoughts on the matter.  With as much as I plan to use, I am planning on using a month of Viceroy salary to this effort.  Yes, that's right, 100,000s for 6.4 million cobble.  I am also planning to have a donation spot for those who want to just give me their cobble even after the funds to buy it are expended, rather than throw it in their trash.  Eventually I will likely be doing this for dirt and grass, too.

 

Anyways, that's where things stand.  Cheers.Cool

"Awake, oh man, and be wise." -Thoth
January 29, 2015
2:28 pm
LightWarriorK
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Another 3 months have slipped by!  Since that time, I have bought a house, moved in with my fiance, had a very busy Holiday season, started to plan a wedding, and have gotten a puppy!  Needless to say, my Minecrafting has suffered, but I'm still making what progress I can.

The biggest change to Aelfheim in this time has been the beginning of the cavern excavation, particularly in the future Greatdeeps district. http://maps.veterancraft.net/?.....8072039679  There are smaller tunnels leading into the larger caverns, all of which will be covered at their appropriate heights with smooth stone and then filled in with cobble to complete the hill above.

Still, I want to finish the exterior sloping before I really dig into the caverns *Badum Tish!*  So with the cobble I've regained from what I've been doing recently, and with the nearly 1 million cobble people have sold to me so far (thanks!), I have enough to resume the "cobble vomit" on the outer slopes of the hill/bluff/whatever.  I'd have to say that I'm nearly 2/3rds done with the sloping, but there are some very tricky spots ahead.

Anyways, this post is really more of a status update than a progress report.  This project hasn't stopped, and has only grown in scope in my head and in planning.

Here's what I've completed on the terraforming:

Gravel Line for Bluff
Harvest Bluff Area Trees
Identify Outer Fill Areas
Mark Under-roads/Districts
Identify Inner Fill Areas
Carve out Inner Area Edges and Tunnels
Carve/Fill Central River
Refine River Edge
Clear Inner Areas of Dirt (4/4)
Mark/Begin Deeper Cavern Cuts (Greatdeeps, Yggdrasil, accents)
Remove Bluff Roads
Mark Edge and Pillar Heights with Cobble.
Fill Pillars
Backfill Areas with Cobble

 

Here's what I'm working on now:

Slope Outer Areas
Dig out Caverns

 

And here's what I have left to do before this thread is done and I can start work on the Kingdom (subject to change, of course):

Establish Cavern Rivers
Stone Cavern Walls and Ceilings
Add Additional Cavern Variations, Mini Pillars, Caves, etc.
Fill Cavern Gaps with Cobble
Layer Cobble on Ceilings
Slope Ceilings
Mark Rivers with Sand
Cover above with Stone
Craft Rivers
Cover Above with Dirt/Grass (2-3 height on top)
Replant Bluff Trees
Clarify/Widen/Establish Aelfheim Rivers
Aelfheim Variance Forestation
Aelfen Ruins
Yggdrasil Sapling

 

Here's hoping I can finish it before Arda hits its year birthday! Kiss

"Awake, oh man, and be wise." -Thoth
February 27, 2015
9:50 am
LightWarriorK
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Aelfheim portal ship is active!

It's located at Exodus Harbor Dock E1, here: http://maps.veterancraft.net/?.....1618440386

And it takes you here: http://maps.veterancraft.net/?.....4511224499

It's now the most effective portal for traveling to NE Arda, taking you over 3x the distance that the East Portal does!

Beware that Aelfheim is still undergoing Terraforming, and is full of long falls and hostile mobs.

 

As for a Terraforming update.....same old story, see the above post.  Exterior Sloping continues well, but slow.

"Awake, oh man, and be wise." -Thoth
March 12, 2015
9:44 pm
LightWarriorK
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Well, Exterior Sloping is complete!  And it's about time!  I think I started it sometime in September. :P

Here's how it looks so far:

OuterSlopingComplete.pngImage Enlarger

And now, I can start digging in earnest on the caverns themselves.  W00T! Laugh

The first step in that is to finish what I started a few posts back (when I was out of cobble).  I need to dig out the floor of the caverns to their final shape.  It's actually very tricky work.  There are three features I need to account for: 1) Future roads and tunnels to the outside (black lines), 2) Waterways (blue lines), and 3) the deep places (brown areas).  There may be more than these, as I go forward.  I'm constantly finding natural chasms that I didn't know where there, and I want to incorporate them into the work.

CavernFeatures.pngImage Enlarger

I really have no idea how long this step will take.  Once it's done, I'll be moving on to cavern walls and ceilings.

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"Awake, oh man, and be wise." -Thoth
March 13, 2015
9:11 pm
Frenchy
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I know you probably have different plans for a sky dock already but, I was thinking, since you are making a tree named Yggdrasil, wouldn't it be cool if you had portal airships in the branches? The world tree links the nine(ish) realms in the Norse cosmos, so it might be an interesting concept. Also, It's nice to see the progress on this!

March 14, 2015
5:33 pm
LightWarriorK
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I actually have plans for multiple skydocks.  Aelfheim is so large, it's going to have networks of rails, ferries, and balloons/airships to various parts of the Kingdom. And yes, there will be an airship going to the top of Yggdrasil, when it's fully grown.

The name for Aelfheim was chosen to be similar to Norse, but there won't be much linkage.  The Norse Alfheim didn't have an "e" in it.

The mythos behind it will be that it's a land that has "moved on."  The Aelfen people, elvish, yes, had LONG since disappeared, leaving behind a number of ruins and the Yggdrasil sapling.  That's where I'll begin when I start my accounting of Aelfheim history.  The name, as the mythos goes, will be in remembrance of the Aelfen people.  The "settlers" such as I'm making up, are actually going to be "Exiles from Highmoor," which is more or less accurate. :)

So when building the Kingdom, I won't actually be doing an Norse or historical "nine realms" build, but rather building on top of their ruins. Hehe.

"Awake, oh man, and be wise." -Thoth
March 14, 2015
7:04 pm
Frenchy
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I love how much thought you put behind your builds. It just makes what you build not only beautiful on the exterior (Let's be honest, you are one of our best builders), but also, adds some background to it that actually gives it a story. I can't wait to see more :)

March 17, 2015
2:36 pm
LightWarriorK
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Thanks Snow!Laugh

The trick is actually getting to the point where I can start building and using some of that thought. ;)

"Awake, oh man, and be wise." -Thoth
April 8, 2015
9:15 am
LightWarriorK
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I really have no idea how long this step will take. 

So, it took a little less than a month to dig out the main pit of Greatdeeps.  I'm really proud of it, using the natural caves and four chasms.  I'm not posting any pictures, because it won't look like how it is now when it's covered by the mountain above it, but you're welcome to visit it if you like.

For the best effect, I recommend coming from the ship, working your way around the north side of the project, and reaching 1940, -850.  You'll see the entrance. CAUTION: Even though it isn't covered yet, there are still many dark caves for mobs to swarm from (and they do) and many sudden drops and plenty of lava.  I HIGHLY recommend /god or enchanted weapons and armors.  I'm not responsible for your otherwise inevitable death. Cool

 

Greatdeeps represents the largest of the pits I have to dig for the project (thank God).  Next up is the Yggdrasil cavern to the east of it, and they'll be joined by a number of caves.  It shouldn't take as long, as it has a smaller circumference overall and won't be as open inside.  After that, I'll be refining cave floors, preparing water and lava channels, exposing/refining chasms (I know of several and will be searching for more) and general cleanup of the Lamplight, Underhill, and Nightmarket districts.

Eventually I'll be able to use all the stone I'm collecting to sculpt the caverns up and start making this whole thing look less like a giant scar on Arda.  I've collected over 500k smooth stone just digging out Greatdeeps, and plan on doing the same for the rest of my digging, just so I don't have to worry about smelting my precious cobblestone supply.  

By the way, that reminds me: I forgot to send an ingame mail, but if someone could please tell Rangasp that I would like to buy thirty(30) UIII EIV ST pickaxes, I would greatly appreciate it.  Thanks! Laugh

"Awake, oh man, and be wise." -Thoth
May 26, 2015
10:54 am
LightWarriorK
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Alright, mini-update.  It's taken over a month and a half, but I've dug out the Yggdrasil cavern! It's located here.

As before, no pics posted because it's not how it will be when finished.  But it's much more "cavern-like" than Greatdeeps is right now.  Mostly because Greatdeeps is larger and requires more coverning, whereas this one started smaller and has been hollowed-out more.

So now the big, deep caverns are dug.  Whew.

I can now move on to the other small deep areas, which aren't going to be dug out nearly so much.  Mainly exposing chasms that are below the scooped out region, and refining what will become the cave floors.  I'm hoping to finish this step fairly quickly so I can start moving on to actually constructing the walls and ceilings of the cavern.

This whole thing is getting annoying.....what on earth was I thinking?? Kiss

 

Anyways, the current caverns are still open to visitors, just remember they're not finished, and I'm not responsible for your death if you fall or come without /god or good armor.  These places WILL kill you.

"Awake, oh man, and be wise." -Thoth
May 26, 2015
11:32 am
pixel_chic
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Love the world tree concept, and uh, pretty much everything else about this build; It's going to be incredible even half-finished lol.

But questions--

You keep referring to Yggdrasil as a sapling. Will you start it that way and have it grow over time? 

Also, how do you pronounce the "Aelf" in Aelfheim? Is it just like "ELF", or maybe "AILF", or "ALF"? I don't know the AE sound I guess.

May 26, 2015
12:07 pm
LightWarriorK
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Thanks!

Yes, the plan is to start with a sappling which will grow as I build temples to tap into "power pools."  Purely lore, of course.

Ailfheim, would be the best pronunciation, I think.  The AE sound is a hard one. Basically it's "Ael" is pronounced "Ale" like the drink, Ginger Ale.  Put an "f" on the end, and add heim. Smile

"Awake, oh man, and be wise." -Thoth
June 8, 2015
11:50 pm
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Alright!  So it hasn't taken long, but I've dug out the rest of my cavern floors.  Still some stuff to do, but I need to see them with the walls and ceilings to refine them.  I'd say the floors are about 90% done to where they'll be.  

Compare with my March 12th post, and here's the update as it looks on the Dynmap now:

Image Enlarger

It's a little hard to tell in most places, but you can see a lot of the areas I've dug out.

 

Now, I'm moving on to the next phase of this monstrosity.  Thanks to Rangasp's Silk Touch Picks, the carving of the caverns above has netted me some 1.1+ million smooth stone.  This will now be applied to crafting the walls and ceilings of the caverns, as well as the tunnels leading in and out.  I have NO idea how long this will take, nor whether this 1.1 million stone will be sufficient.  I am sticking to my "stupidity compartmentalization" method, and will be starting in the smaller areas first, like Underhill and the Nightmarket, then working my way in from the edges, eventually reaching what will be known as The Rift.

Updates as progress warrants. :)

And if anyone is curious, I AM planning a GIF or video of frames of all of these steps, seamlessly lined up, to show how this all went down after it's done.  

"Awake, oh man, and be wise." -Thoth
June 11, 2015
6:54 am
tedisvet
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I noticed there is a hedge maze & haunted maze in the TO-DO list.

For either of them (but mainly the haunted) this video could be really usefull:

An ever changing maze!

If you decide to build it, I'll be glad to give it a test run! :)

"Pants? You mean leg prisons."

June 17, 2015
8:58 am
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Sorry I missed your post Ted.  That looks great!  Lot of ideas.

Unfortunately I can't look too far ahead with this project.  For one, the to-do list keeps growing, but also until I'm done terraforming, it has to remain just a list. *sigh*

I'll refer back to this post.  I have to keep "compartmentalizing my stupidity" in order to maintain my sanity on this project....otherwise the amount of work to do overwhelms me and I would quit.  It's how I've managed to keep going over the last year.

In short, I can't plan details, know exactly where something will go, layout the myriad of castles, walls, temples, cities, towns, farms, industries, roads, rails, ports, events, etc. until after I'm done terraforming and I can look on the land with fresh eyes....as if I am first seeing it.

Otherwise, my plans would affect the terraforming, which I've been doing as natural as possible, and the result wouldn't be pretty.  If I need to flatten or fill some small areas afterwards while building, that's fine, but THIS terraforming can't be influenced too much by what I intend to do.  All I know now is where I want basic features, like the castle mountain, the Yggdrasil peak, the Verenna plateau, and The Rift.  How those will actually look in the end....I have NO idea.

 

To that end, here 's a mini-update.  I'll keep editing this pic, for those who want to see the progress.

As a part of my "stupidity compartmentalization," I'm breaking up the cavern sculpting into 8 parts.  Here's the progress and descriptors:

3rd.pngImage Enlarger

  • 1st - Rustwick Grotto (Castle Utilityworks) - COMPLETE! 6/17 
  • 2nd - Nightmarket Cavern (Lower Verenna) - COMPLETE! 6/28
  • 3rd - Underhill Cavern (Manors) - COMPLETE! 7/20
  • 4th - Yggdrasil Cavern (Roots and Temple) - In Progress
  • 5th - Lamplight Cavern (City)- Next
  • 6th - Lower Greatdeeps (Temple and Hunting Zone)
  • 7th - Upper Greatdeeps (Town)
  • 8th - The Rift (Sheer Divide in the Terrain)

Remember, these are just going to be the bare caverns.  Development of them will come MUCH later in concert with the rest of the Kingdom.

 

And remember....if you happen to wander into these massive unlit caverns, I'm NOT responsible for your inevitable death. Laugh

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July 21, 2015
12:28 am
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Looks like a couple year project lol looks great form the views that you've posted its also cool how you have them divided into separate areas. Good luck can't wait to see it when it's done

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July 21, 2015
9:57 am
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Thanks!  At the pace I'm going, I expect the Terraforming to continue for another year or so, unless I have a glut of unforseen time to play.  My current pace is not what it once was (since I moved in with my fiance).  I need a laptop, which would greatly improve my time online.

But the project aside from terraforming was concepted from the beginning to be "neverending."  I'll always have something to build here.Cool

"Awake, oh man, and be wise." -Thoth
July 21, 2015
10:03 am
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LightWarriorK said
Thanks!  At the pace I'm going, I expect the Terraforming to continue for another year or so, unless I have a glut of unforseen time to play.  My current pace is not what it once was (since I moved in with my fiance).  I need a laptop, which would greatly improve my time online.

But the project aside from terraforming was concepted from the beginning to be "neverending."  I'll always have something to build here.Cool

 

I don't care how long it takes...just keep buying cobble :D lol

 

EDIT : it is looking impressive though, had a visit a few days ago :)

July 21, 2015
11:27 am
LightWarriorK
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SpyBorg said I don't care how long it takes...just keep buying cobble :D lol

At my last check, I was still buying 3 million. Cool  I have to fill the cracks of the caverns, pour in massive amounts to get it up to the levels of the current sloping, and then cap with more sloping to finish the mountains.  Then I have to cap it all with a layer of stone, and then 2-3 dirt/grass.  The filling will be extensive.

EDIT : it is looking impressive though, had a visit a few days ago :)

Thanks!  I hope you came armored, if you wandered into one of the covered caverns.  I don't recommend them if one doesn't have /god.  The mob spawns are everywhere since I haven't lit them.

"Awake, oh man, and be wise." -Thoth
July 21, 2015
12:03 pm
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LightWarriorK said
Thanks!  I hope you came armored, if you wandered into one of the covered caverns.  I don't recommend them if one doesn't have /god.  The mob spawns are everywhere since I haven't lit them.

Sounds more like an epic hunting ground to me. Laugh

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