Castle Portfolio [Pre 1.8]
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Level 58 : Grandmaster Necromancer
Posted 05/29/11 9:43:31 pm
My rule of thumb with castle building is to build with the land, not against it. So many people carve boring, dull box castles out of the landscape, but this is in stark opposition to what medieval Europeans actually did. They first tried to find ideal locations for them - islands, hills, hills overlooking strategic waterways, etc. etc. - instead of making ideal locations.
My first step is to flatten and embank the castle's footprint. This means shaving - not gouging - off the very topmost layers of the mountain, and then using that material to embank this foundation so it's at least 2 blocks tall.
I then "torch out" this foundation, so I can continue building at night. The torches nullify monster spawns while the embankment blocks out everything but spiders, right off the bat.
Then I lay down the bottom of the wall, contracted one block in from the initial embankment. This gives the castles more texture and makes it look less sheer than if it was flush with the embankment.
My walls always go cobble-gravel-cobble, from block one to block three. This is less effective for PVP than using water or lava as a filler, but it's more authentic.
The top layer of my wall is smooth-cobble-wood-cobble. The smoothstone overhang breaks up the profile of the castle and highlights the horizontals, and also keeps spiders from breaking in. At this point the castle is functionally complete.
I then build smoothstone crenellations onto the overhang to complete the look. A more effective strategy is to lay a layer of smooth onto the overhang, and then lay down double alternating fenceposts, and then lay down a layer of smoothstone on top of that. It's an attractive effect and is also very good for archers, as they are covered from fire above and below while having a wide field themselves.
Ever since I first played the game, I have always built two things - castles, and on top of hills. My very first, long-lost world started as a protective wall shrouding my underground hideout, to which I later added a cobble box at the summit of its mountain. I then played on a friend's private SMP server, and built my first walled fortress on a peninsula, around the same time that I built Weathertop, pictured here. These two cemented my style and laid the foundation for progressively larger and more formidable fortresses.
Crown Hill was my next major castle, on Wilson's Minecraft Server. As this server did not have any anti-grief/anti-theft addons I kept its location a closely guarded secret, and hid the entrances to my vaults. It was never raided or griefed once, though.
After Wilson's, I landed on Acidcraft and built Baymouth Keep. Overlooking Townville's harbor, it set the standard for my later castle building. It remained untouched during the first griefing of the server, and was expanded constantly, boasting numerous underground roads and vaults, and a bridge over a nearby inlet, followed by a gatehouse and a road leading back to Townville.
After that map I rejoined on Acidcraft's third and final map, and built the largest and finest castle I have done yet - Helverine Castle. Its seat on the mountain south of Legion City insured a wonderful view coming in and made it a landmark in the city below.
|Tags:||Land Structure, Castle, Building, Technique, Landscaping|
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