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Concerning Megabuilds - e.g. Axebow Estate

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avatar Piano_Creeper
Retired Moderator
Level 46 : Master Architect
484
Hey Guys and Girls,
Many of the very successful PMC members are posting large builds and earn XP with it. But a big part of the audience is only thinking like this: "Yes, its great, but no download :(" and this is it, an attitude which those guys really don't deserve.
Because doing large build is lots of work and this is mostly going over a long time.
In this blog i want to show up the work which is need to do a large build - a Megabuild.

Doing a megabuild is challenging the builder(s) in many ways!
I want to show you up my work during the building progress of my megabuild Axebow Estate.

Planning
During the planning phase you need to get clear on what do you want to build on - If it's a island, a peninsula, a hill or whatever is usable as base for your project.
I've decided myself for a peninsula (nearly an island), concepted as terraformed structure. The first step then is to plan the terrain, you may get inspired by some internet pics, videos or whatever.
The problems with this:
- you need to make your terrain to be a possible base for your later project on it
- you need to design the structures and every feature, you can use WorldEdit, but for a complete unique island you should start by hand - doing a sketch on paper or on a graphic tablet if you have one (Doing the sketches on a block gives you more freedom on the where to design - I've designed my project during the lessons at school, mostly english and math)

My sketch looked like this:
axebowestatescanpng
The black lines are marking the major heights, every line in another color is a sketch of a specific height level (especially at the beaches) or a special feature (e.g. Pool).

You'll later be in need of scanning your sketch in.
Then you need to enforce the drawn lines via a graphic program, I recommend Photoshop or GIMP as alternate freeware version, not PAINT (it doesn't support transparency), but Paint.net does!
To get the structure in game, you need to use WorldPainter, With this you can import a height map (your sketch).
To make this height map as usable as possible, you should add height colors to your sketch, best height colors are gray shades - e.g. a Height of 63 is equal to the color 3F3F3F, a height of 64 would be 404040 and so on, in Hexadecimal values; again with the graphic program.

My height map was this:
axebowestategrstpng
The Water is the darkest gray which lights up til the height lines, where the structures will be situated in the future.
Than WorldPainter will generate a WorldSave in your Minecraft Folder when use "Export to Minecraft Save".
If you want to add a biome layer to your Megabuild, i recommend BiomePainter for doing so (WorldPainter is also possible, but not so detailed)
importedpng
Lots of work needs to be done to get it in the final look, like changing the beaches to sand, the ways needs to be done, and the smoothing of some heights needs to be done.

This is only the look of the overall shape - the estate itself, the indoor layout and even the paths had their own height maps

Then you need to think of the build itself, the structure of it - I would do this in the same sketch as the landscape (less mistakes between the lines of the structure when enforcing, otherwise there would be differences between the first and every following imported sketch (even if you scan the same (updated) sketch again in))
My Sketch was this:
axebowmansionpng
The left sketch is the overview, the right sketch shows up the central height lines.
You'll again need to import it via WorldPainter (you can also import it with the exterior sketch at one time)

Building
At Axebow Estate, I've only included additional height lines to show where the structures are situated and where they start or end.
And now i had to transform those lines in a structure, most time are these structures custom shaped - they're irregular and you've to do everything by hand, doing ONLY the side structures have taken me a week and about 2500 blocks of snow.
My Main Structure is custom shaped in every direction, it have taken me another 3 days (about 24 hours of continued work) to complete.

And after you've done the exterior of the House, you need to spent time on the landscape around it.
Maybe there's redstone engineering included, maybe a fountain and another time a large pool and custom made trees.
Redstone engineering sounds nice, but at a megabuild you will lose the overview quite fast.
Axebow's Restone Engineering is like this:
redstoneepng
The left pics are showing sections of the technique, on the overview are the paths marked.
The red lines in the overview are the paths of the redstone engineering, in every tree on those ways is a redstone lamp which may get enabled from ONE single point (in the front structure), below every water head is one and every lamp at the sandstone path may get enabled, all from one single position!

Fountains have the problem that you can't do 1x1 water heads in minecraft (if its possible, then pls tell me), you need to do this with MCEdit or SinglePlayerCommands (SPC)
A pool itself is a nice thing, but you need to fill it with water - using buckets is to much of work (trust me), you have to use SPC or MCEdit again, but there are some tricks like filling the pool up to the second-highest layer with blocks, then do only the highest layer of water and then remove the pool volume, water won't be flowing with this technique.
The pool of Axebow Estate is 655 qm large and contains 2695 blocks of water.
Custom made trees are also nice to view, especially for avenues, but you have to place them every time when you need one. I recommend using SPC for this
Axebow Estate has 110 custom made trees in two different shapes - one with glowstone inside, the other one is part of the redstone engineering.

And after you've done the whole exterior, you need to do the interior things - and Interior is mostly more work then the exterior building.
You have to do a room layout, have to decide which materials to use and in which style you will build, I'm building in modern style using much slabs, stairs and different types of Wool and Wood
And for doing interior, you need to have ideas - OliverFrenchie has made an awesome tutorial for Indoor Furniture, many additional ideas you'll find on eminently respectable servers like World Of Keralis.
Pics of my Interior ideas you can see at the PMC Post of Axebow Estate.

Finishing and posting
Often you see a featured video coming with these projects, videos are really lots of work and you should appreciate this., and take your time to watch.
Most of the builders are using a rendered image as title (and often also as exterior pics) - rendering takes lots of time, and the editing of it with Photoshop or GIMP is also taking time.
Doing interior pics is also a hard job due to the fact that you've only 20 Images for every project, may it be a shack or a megabuild.
And so you have to decide, of which room you're taking a photo, but most you've more rooms of which pictures should be taken than you may upload...
Writing the description is also a nice job - but this is in my opinion one of the easiest parts of doing a megabuild due to the fact that you've done this project and you want to show what you've made. You know your work and you know its features best.
And Posting itself isn't that hard...

I hope I've showed you what work it is to do a large project and i hope that you as a reader of this will appreciate the builds of those guys in a way the deserve - by supporting them as much as you can.
Thank you for reading, maybe appreciate this by supporting me aswell :)

If you liked it, then diamond, favorite and maybe subscribe.
If you would like to see something or want me to link one of your projects (Megabuild), then comment pls

Thanks everyone again
Hope it helped

Piano Creeper

I've to thank xraiunion4000x who've showed me his megabuild of the Forerunner Ark from Halo 3, made in a similar style!

popularreelpng
Thank all of you for bringing this on the Popular reel!
CreditKielbasa, OliverFrenchie
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Comments : 64

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1 - 50 of 64

  • huang
  • Level 10
  • Journeyman Dragon
  • May 1, 2013, 11:48 pm
awesssommmmeee
I diamond this because I am the footballheadmask guy and I love you all <3
  • GeXile
  • Level 52
  • Grandmaster Skinner
  • October 22, 2012, 3:48 am
okay really a whole resort :O godlike work :O
  • Piano_Creeper
  • Retired Moderator
  • Level 46
  • Master Architect
  • October 22, 2012, 3:53 am
yes, a complete one...
complete but not finished...
  • -EquinoX-
  • Level 49
  • Master Architect
  • October 20, 2012, 4:04 am
  • Piano_Creeper
  • Retired Moderator
  • Level 46
  • Master Architect
  • October 20, 2012, 4:14 am
i linked it, thank you for commenting, btw it's a really great project!
  • -EquinoX-
  • Level 49
  • Master Architect
  • October 21, 2012, 10:52 am
Thanks :D with a sketch it works fine just need some fine work in MCedit ^^
  • Piano_Creeper
  • Retired Moderator
  • Level 46
  • Master Architect
  • October 21, 2012, 10:53 am
no problem man, its an awesome project you have!
  • -EquinoX-
  • Level 49
  • Master Architect
  • October 21, 2012, 11:00 am
you see i need worldpainter for the terraforming and mcedit is for the scale ... is there a way to make an existing map even bigger? i need it 18.000blocks from one arm to the other (big ones) if yes please tell me how.
  • Piano_Creeper
  • Retired Moderator
  • Level 46
  • Master Architect
  • October 21, 2012, 11:02 am
Idk if SinglePlayerCommands aka WorldEdit is able to handle the creation of new chunks...
Otherwise you've only the possibility to explore... a lot (i think)
  • -EquinoX-
  • Level 49
  • Master Architect
  • October 22, 2012, 2:52 am
^^ jes but i want to know if there is a funktion i dont know where which multiplays the blocks and makes everything in a bigger scale you know?
  • Piano_Creeper
  • Retired Moderator
  • Level 46
  • Master Architect
  • October 22, 2012, 3:30 am
i think MCEdit can do this, but only with a "limited" selection (maybe some million blocks) - When Cloning this selection, there is a option "Scale Factor" which (only integer) enable the scaling...
Hope it helped
  • -EquinoX-
  • Level 49
  • Master Architect
  • October 22, 2012, 5:06 am
thanks iam gona try it :D
  • zking1998
  • Level 7
  • Apprentice Dragon
  • December 18, 2012, 9:27 am
try uesing mcedit it can make now counks but is very complicated (i could only do the very basics)
  • -EquinoX-
  • Level 49
  • Master Architect
  • December 18, 2012, 10:48 am
a new funktion? how can i use it?
  • zking1998
  • Level 7
  • Apprentice Dragon
  • December 20, 2012, 11:34 am
i dont know i could not figer it out but it is a very cool thing to have.
  • -EquinoX-
  • Level 49
  • Master Architect
  • December 21, 2012, 2:04 am
iam going to look for it ~ Google :)
  • Piano_Creeper
  • Retired Moderator
  • Level 46
  • Master Architect
  • October 22, 2012, 5:10 am
np man, i hope it work
  • ben112001
  • Level 4
  • Apprentice Miner
  • October 19, 2012, 2:56 pm
amazing
  • Piano_Creeper
  • Retired Moderator
  • Level 46
  • Master Architect
  • October 20, 2012, 2:00 am
thanks man
  • Wantedguy28
  • Level 10
  • Journeyman Engineer
  • October 18, 2012, 7:07 pm
Whats this? -_- i dont understand what you imagine in top picture...
  • Piano_Creeper
  • Retired Moderator
  • Level 46
  • Master Architect
  • October 18, 2012, 8:53 pm
the top picture / Title image is a comparison between the sketch of the project and the nearly finished project in Minecraft
And its remarkable that it's fitting quite well
  • imlost
  • Level 1
  • New Miner
  • October 18, 2012, 3:48 pm
that looks amazing!!!
  • Piano_Creeper
  • Retired Moderator
  • Level 46
  • Master Architect
  • October 18, 2012, 8:52 pm
and it's a bit of work, too
AMAZING!
  • Piano_Creeper
  • Retired Moderator
  • Level 46
  • Master Architect
  • October 18, 2012, 12:18 pm
lots of work... (but every submission is)

thanks man
Np this is AMAZING!
  • lentebriesje
  • Site Moderator
  • Level 82
  • Elite Terraformer
  • October 18, 2012, 12:00 pm
I'm srry to say i couldn't read the blog unbiased. The following quote set me off greatly, i can understand why 'download pls' people are annyoing, but you are setting the tone with it.

Many of the very successful PMC members are posting large builds and earn XP with it. But most of us are only thinking like this: "Yes, its great, but no download :(" and this is it, an opinion which those guys really don't deserve. [size=small][color=rgb(34,34,34)][bgcolor=rgb(204,204,204)]Because doing this build is[/bgcolor][/color][/size] [size=small][color=rgb(34,34,34)][bgcolor=rgb(204,204,204)]lots[/bgcolor][/color][/size][size=small][color=rgb(34,34,34)][bgcolor=rgb(204,204,204)] of work and this is mostly going over a long time.[/bgcolor][/color][/size]

I interpret that as if you are talking down to the readers. As specially the part how you first say how succesful PMC members do it, and than include yourself to them with the word "us". I assume it was unintentional, either way. OT: i think your way of doing a megabuild is rather different compared as to most other builders do it, like others have said, i think most people start and just see where it ends. It was interesting to read your work proces, although i'm not changing how i start building because of this blog. Anyhow, this blog is deserving of a diamond, although i would edit the start a bit ;)
  • Piano_Creeper
  • Retired Moderator
  • Level 46
  • Master Architect
  • October 18, 2012, 12:15 pm
I updated it, thanks again for this hint...

And i know that my way of building is different to other's, but i think it works great, and as long as it works, its fine, no matter how the way of building is.

If you would improve sth again, then pls reply to this

Thanks for the help (in past & advance)
  • lentebriesje
  • Site Moderator
  • Level 82
  • Elite Terraformer
  • October 18, 2012, 12:26 pm
[size=10pt]I don't see the point why to include the[/size] "[size=small][color=rgb(34,34,34)][bgcolor=rgb(204,204,204)]"Yes, its great, but no download :([/bgcolor][/color][/size]" thing. As the blog isn't a reason why people will stop asking for downloads. [size=small][color=rgb(34,34,34)]Whether people understand how much work a mega build is or not, they will still be asking for a download ;) [/color][/size] But anyway, i think you want to include it, so i'll leave it. How it is now is fine, although you should change the word opinion to the word attitude.
  • Piano_Creeper
  • Retired Moderator
  • Level 46
  • Master Architect
  • October 18, 2012, 12:28 pm
thanks, word change will be done - I'll look for an alternate quotation as beginning...
  • lentebriesje
  • Site Moderator
  • Level 82
  • Elite Terraformer
  • October 18, 2012, 12:29 pm
à t's not the quote, it's the point you are trying to make ;)
  • Xistence
  • Level 8
  • Apprentice Toast
  • October 18, 2012, 12:54 pm
Oh lent, always passing judgement. :D
  • lentebriesje
  • Site Moderator
  • Level 82
  • Elite Terraformer
  • October 18, 2012, 1:07 pm
I only reply when i have something to say. I'm not a judgemental person, those who know me know that to be a fact. Although yes, i can see how you might think i am. I am just not the person to do "nice!" or "epic!" or "cool!" comments. Although i think it frequently while browsing through projects ;) if replies had +1 buttons, i'd use them.
  • Xistence
  • Level 8
  • Apprentice Toast
  • October 18, 2012, 2:39 pm
o3o But lent, don't you love kittens?
  • lentebriesje
  • Site Moderator
  • Level 82
  • Elite Terraformer
  • October 18, 2012, 10:34 pm
Kittens i like, cats not. I'm a dog person :)
  • Xistence
  • Level 8
  • Apprentice Toast
  • October 19, 2012, 11:56 am
Then our motives are one and the same. The world will soon be ours...
  • Piano_Creeper
  • Retired Moderator
  • Level 46
  • Master Architect
  • October 18, 2012, 12:33 pm
not really, and your point is right that the people will continue asking for a download... And for not mentioning this i am in need of a new quotation (i think), and i'll try to make it less biased (maybe tomorrow)
  • Piano_Creeper
  • Retired Moderator
  • Level 46
  • Master Architect
  • October 18, 2012, 12:08 pm
ok, i understand your point (with the help of three dictonaries, i'm no native [size=10pt]english speaker)[/size]
[size=10pt]I know, its a bit biased, i'll try to find a nice way to paraphrase it...[/size]
[size=10pt]Thanks for your LARGE comment and the constructive criticism in it[/size]

[size=10pt]cya[/size]
  • Aaron_09
  • Level 31
  • Artisan Cowboy
  • October 18, 2012, 11:02 am
This in fact is a way of making such. My way is just to start and see what comes. Lol, do it the way you like.
  • Piano_Creeper
  • Retired Moderator
  • Level 46
  • Master Architect
  • October 18, 2012, 11:26 am
ARREXP is doing it in the same way like you...

But i need some structural plans to build a nice things, i'm not such spontanous that it becomes awesome in first try.
  • Nefashus
  • Retired Moderator
  • Level 80
  • Elite Architect
  • October 18, 2012, 3:50 am
Wob Wob
  • Piano_Creeper
  • Retired Moderator
  • Level 46
  • Master Architect
  • October 18, 2012, 5:15 am
what does "wob" mean?
But does it seems that you like it?
  • Aaron_09
  • Level 31
  • Artisan Cowboy
  • October 18, 2012, 11:02 am
That guy is weird, just forget all of his comments. I had to forget his too :p
  • Piano_Creeper
  • Retired Moderator
  • Level 46
  • Master Architect
  • October 18, 2012, 11:25 am
ok...
  • ARREXP
  • Level 46
  • Master Wizard
  • October 17, 2012, 7:11 pm
*never plans his builds, they just happen) XD
  • Piano_Creeper
  • Retired Moderator
  • Level 46
  • Master Architect
  • October 17, 2012, 8:48 pm
This' also fine, but i like to have some structural plans before i build...
It makes it more accurate for me.

Thanks man
  • ARREXP
  • Level 46
  • Master Wizard
  • October 17, 2012, 11:18 pm
well it doesn't really matter, both our styles seem to work :)
  • Piano_Creeper
  • Retired Moderator
  • Level 46
  • Master Architect
  • October 18, 2012, 12:37 am
yes, and in a really nice way!
Actually, Paint.Net does support transparency, while Paint does not.
  • Piano_Creeper
  • Retired Moderator
  • Level 46
  • Master Architect
  • October 17, 2012, 8:49 pm
ok, will change that
  • Mr_Cheach
  • Level 52
  • Grandmaster Taco
  • October 17, 2012, 10:53 am
oh man. thats crazy. DIAMOND! aaahhh so dedicated to your project. i LOVE that. xD
  • Piano_Creeper
  • Retired Moderator
  • Level 46
  • Master Architect
  • October 17, 2012, 11:02 am
thank you man!
It's really cool seeing the birds eye view comparison, and in every single one of those lines we can se more and more Bordem xD
  • Piano_Creeper
  • Retired Moderator
  • Level 46
  • Master Architect
  • October 17, 2012, 10:53 am
yes, and it helps a lot to have a base on which you can orientate when doing those structures...
  • smanrt
  • Level 50
  • Grandmaster Batman
  • October 17, 2012, 10:41 am
Nice Job! i will add it to the official uploads, and dont forget about "Brought to you by royal squid society" :)
  • Sillouete
  • Retired Moderator
  • Level 69
  • High Grandmaster Sailor
  • October 17, 2012, 9:34 am
Nice, it's really interesting how you plan and develop your projects. Very accurate too!
  • Piano_Creeper
  • Retired Moderator
  • Level 46
  • Master Architect
  • October 17, 2012, 9:40 am
thanks man, every large projects i'm doing is made in this way...
  • Murokmakto
  • Level 54
  • Grandmaster Wolf Whisperer
  • October 17, 2012, 8:22 am
Very detailled tour of the axebow estate construction. You explain just everything there are no further questions which you havent answered within that post. Keep up that great work!
  • Piano_Creeper
  • Retired Moderator
  • Level 46
  • Master Architect
  • October 17, 2012, 8:24 am
will do, thanks man
  • kralle98
  • Level 9
  • Apprentice Hunter
  • October 17, 2012, 7:19 am
Never thought of it in that way!
  • Piano_Creeper
  • Retired Moderator
  • Level 46
  • Master Architect
  • October 17, 2012, 7:47 am
you've should...

these guys really deserve our support
  • kralle98
  • Level 9
  • Apprentice Hunter
  • October 20, 2012, 12:59 am
im nano!
  • Piano_Creeper
  • Retired Moderator
  • Level 46
  • Master Architect
  • October 20, 2012, 2:01 am
ik, but if you continue saying this in public, I'll give a notice to some site moderators...

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