NE Mass Route - pg 11


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NEMass Route – pg 11

Discussion: Swamps, Marshes, Wetlands
Here, in New England we have lots of wetlands. We all have geographical coastal regions, excepting Vermont, which has lots of cows; although New Hampshire barely slips in there; snow boarders, black bears and all! Coastal regions have defined wetlands, which in the context of this blog, I will differentiate from marshland (although quite similar). Wetlands, I will define as sea level brackish marsh delineated by a tidal coastline. Marshlands, on the other hand, I will define as highland watershed generally draining to wetlands. Swamps, as such, I believe, don't really exist in this region; here,they're more like extended marshes or wetlands. You want a swamp, go to South Carolina, Florida or Louisiana.
Having clarified my view on wetlands, lets get to the mucky meat of thistopic; marshland. (I will treat wetlands at another time.)

Modeling Marshland
I think marshland is one of the most difficult scenes to paint in the Surveyor mode. Its greens, browns and mauve colorings are a challenge to the TS12 pallet. Its textures too, are difficult to replicate simply because of the complexity of vegetation which thrives and dies in its environs. In any case, no matter what geographical region one models,marshland is an asset's both paint and object intensive. Cattails, reeds, drowned woodland, etc., are all a part of its native fauna, Its animal inhabitants, excepting birds, for the most part are too small and well hidden to model. (Again, if you want alligatorz, Burmese pythonz, and the like, look further south.) All, nonetheless, present a significant challenge to a route builder.
I will admit I had to rely heavily on Google Earth to catch the nuances of the mucky marsh. There is little on the Surveyor pallet which explains itself as a marshland paint. It takes bit of observation to place the available paints into that category. Simple trial and error!
While some would choose a more realistic view in their art, here I chose amore Impressionist view, if for no other reason, than it is near impossible to realistically recreate a marsh landscape within the pallet and technical limitations of the program and computer. Giving TS12 its due credit, I think it performed well in such a demanding task. I will provide the texture KUID numbers to any interested in creating a similar scene.
Several screen shots of my own homespun view of New England marshlands are included in the link noted below.

Aword about TS12
I admit freely I have cursed TS06 to the deepest environs of a digital inferno as this simple computer illiterate can muster. After the freewheeling days of TS04, that episodic adventure into frustration left a very negative taste for Auran's intrusions into my tranquility.
It was only with trepidation (and a new computer) that I dared exploringTS10.
Not bad!”, I exhorted to my cautious financier; “Perhaps we might dare TS12!”.
Well, N3V, or whatever you call yourself now; what a pleasant surprise!
I find TS12 to be the friendliest of all Trainz endeavors yet put to market.
Sporting a machine that I would call slightly upper mid-range, at best, TS12 has proven to be a satisfying experience. Building my own route with a TrainzDEM based map exceeding 1800 base boards, I have piled on asset after asset to appease my aesthetic expectations, and TS12 has hardly stuttered or burped on a single track mainline with signals , speed signs and track marks applied.
I applaud your efforts. You have (somewhat) regained my confidence.
Please continue!
In Conclusion
Wetlands/marshlands are very difficult to model. They are asset intensive and I would venture the observation that no Trainz versions, prior to TS12 could handle that weight of assets in a dynamic environment, as well.
As proof of that simple pudding, I offer up the following screenies, honest and true, sans bumps, thumps and stutters.
Link: Mass pg11/

Thanks again for dropping by and sampling my ramblings, observations and allusions.