How To: Make Trees in Slab6

Instructions for using and creating mods.
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Influx
Mapper
Mapper
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Joined: Sat Dec 15, 2012 5:11 pm


This is a tutorial on how to make some trees in Slab6. I've used this method for quite a while now and it can result in some good looking trees. Since a lot of maps use trees, I figured that was a good place to start.

First, though, this is a quick showcase of the development of my own trees. Feel free to skip straight to the tutorial if you're not interested!

Normandie. These were the first and worst trees I've made. The trunks were 1 voxel thick making them easy to grief, but their disproportionally short height, while not looking very good, made them easy to get down from if you spawned in them. Next map, I tried something a bit more solid-looking in Industry. They're still much too short, but their two-voxel thick trunk made them a bit more resiliant. I started getting them looking good in Market Garden. It was here that I also experimented with different styles of trees, as shown by the pine tree here. Now, I can make scenery that I can honestly say is something I class amongst my best work in Alpine.

Tutorial

1. I have this saved as a base I use for every Slab6 model I create. If you don't have a base model, reduce the default ball down to just one block and save it.
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2. Paint it brown. Doesn't matter what shade, since tree bark comes in all different shades. Just get it to a colour you're happy with.
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3. Make a cross-shape like this.
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4. Extend the trunk upwards, and notice how the arms of the cross have become roots for the tree.
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5. Pick a location on your tree where you want the leaves to start and draw 4 arms. Make them bigger than you think you need.
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6. Using the slice editor, fill the layer in.
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7. Copy that layer up. If you reach the top of your model and you want to go higher, draw a tower of voxels and fill those layers in in the slice editor as well.
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8. Angle your camera to look at one side directly. Hold down your delete key while drawing the outline of a tree shape. I find dragging your cursor back and forth like you're colouring in a drawing works well.
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9. While it looks okay from the front, it looks ugly from any other view.
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10. Pick another face and repeat step 8. Try to make it look different to the one you drew initially.
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11. Once you're done all 4 faces, look at it from each diagnonal view and round the sharp edges off.
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12. Don't forget to do the top-down view and underneath the tree too.
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13. Now you have the basic shape. Don't be afraid to keep on trimming if a corner looks too sharp or if you have floating voxels. What I do now is 'roughen' the tree. I move the cursor at random over the tree and tap delete to remove random voxels. This makes the tree look less smooth and more realistic.
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14. Look at the shade of green you used for the leaves in the colour pallette. Now click on the shade 2 to the right and start putting a few highlights on the top half of the tree.
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15. Taking the shade 2 to the left of the base green shade is a good choice to do the lowlights as well. Scatter these about on the underside of the tree but don't go too crazy.
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16. You can add shading to the trunk as well if you like. Again, 2 shades darker works well.
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17. Don't be afraid to experiment. Here, I've drawn branches which I think look good.
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18. Save that tree, and make variants of it. This one has a longer trunk than the other one, which means if you make a forest out of them, the trees' canopies will vary and look realistic.
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19. Changing colours of trees is simple as well. If you right-click on the colour you'd like to change on your model, move the cursor over the colour pallette and use numbers 1-6 on the number pad, you can adjust the RGB value of that colour (1 + 4 decrease and increase the red value, 2 + 5 for the green value and 3 + 6 for the blue). The great thing is that any voxels that are the colour you're changing will automatically change to the new colour. Here, I've demonstrated it by changing the tree to something that looks like a Birch tree.
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Well, I hope that helped you in some way. If you have any comments, questions or suggestions feel free to leave them. I'd also love to hear how you create your own trees if you have a special method different to mine.
izzy
Head Admin / Co-founder
Head Admin / Co-founder
Posts: 473
Joined: Tue Oct 09, 2012 8:16 pm


Very nice, detailed tutorial. Thanks!

As Bob Ross would say, I'll be trying this technique to make lots of happy big trees. Blue_Smiling
Jdrew
Mapper
Mapper
Posts: 4808
Joined: Tue Oct 30, 2012 10:48 pm


from the title I thought you were just gonna make the small tress but wow! I am definitively gonna use this, good job man!
Skynet
Modder
Modder
Posts: 252
Joined: Tue Oct 30, 2012 10:37 pm


Very nice I wish I would have seen this earlier then now, thanks for the help either way
Jdrew
Mapper
Mapper
Posts: 4808
Joined: Tue Oct 30, 2012 10:48 pm


excuse me but how do I copy a layer up?
Lostmotel
League Participant
League Participant
Posts: 298
Joined: Sun Nov 18, 2012 1:09 pm


excuse me but how do I copy a layer up?
You can press shift in the slice editor to select the layer to copy.
Then you have to move the slice editor upwards or downwards and after you selected the slice you would like to copy your layer into, press shift and insert to paste all the blocks you selected.
Venator
League Participant
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Posts: 1225
Joined: Wed Nov 07, 2012 8:32 pm


Now if I could only do the rest of the stuff.
Then this would probs come in pretty handy.
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