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Modules designed under 10mb. How?

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Modules designed under 10mb. How?

Postby bhfredjenni » June 14th, 2017, 11:11 pm

How do the designers make popular board games like Axis & Allies using under 10mbs? I use Gimp and can't even get a board made less then 10mbs. Any help much welcomed. Thanks
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Re: Modules designed under 10mb. How?

Postby neonpico » June 15th, 2017, 5:44 am

I'm a bit of a newb here myself, but I would guess that they are using few graphics and piecing them together to form larger graphics. Consider the "Game Piece Image Definitions" section.
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Re: Modules designed under 10mb. How?

Postby rdmorss » June 16th, 2017, 6:17 pm

Usually the largest graphics file in a module is the board image.
You can shrink the size of the board image file by using an indexed color palette.

With your final map image loaded into GIMP, select
Image > Mode > Indexed > Generate Optimum Palette of 256 colors
Click the Convert button
Then export to png format for use in the module.
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Re: Modules designed under 10mb. How?

Postby uckelman » June 19th, 2017, 10:56 pm

Thus spake bhfredjenni:
> How do the designers make popular board games like Axis & Allies using
> under 10mbs? I use Gimp and can't even get a board made less then 10mbs.
> Any help much welcomed. Thanks

The only image in the A&A version 2.5 module which is very large is the
map image, and it's not _that_ large, only 1000x2000 or so. It's not
using an indexed palette.

Using an indexed pallet when your original image has more than 256
colors in it will reduce the quality of your image. Disk space is
cheap these days. Taking this route will make your module worse for
no benefit.

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Re: Modules designed under 10mb. How?

Postby bhfredjenni » June 20th, 2017, 4:22 pm

Thanks for the reply uckelman, I'm fairly new at this I've only did the one Module Star Trek: The Dice Game and have a few other Modules in working. I guess my question here is when I create my Module board in Gimp its size is usually 19mb and looks good in Vassal engine, but way to high for download Module. After I add everything else in the Module like cards, pieces etc. the mbs grow. rdmorrs reply helped the board go from 19mb to 788kb using indexed palette and yes it does effect the quality thats why I did not do the same with my cards. It seems the best way to keep your Module board low in kbs is just as the manual says scan the game board. Thats fine if your creating a Module of a game that already exists and have a good clear scan or a file of the game. But when it comes to creating your own board in a graphic program like Gimp or Photoshop its harder to do this and keep the kbs low. Of course I may be doing something wrong and thats why I brought this question to the Forum for help and advice. Most of my boards are 2400x1400 and right off the bat in Gimp I'm at 19mb before I even download it to vassal. I appreciate your help and reply, but I'm just not sure how most designers here can come out with a complete game especially ones with lots of graphics on board and cards and many pieces all under 15-10mb. Thanks
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Re: Modules designed under 10mb. How?

Postby uckelman » June 20th, 2017, 5:36 pm

Thus spake bhfredjenni:
> Thanks for the reply uckelman, I'm fairly new at this I've only did the
> one Module Star Trek: The Dice Game and have a few other Modules in
> working. I guess my question here is when I create my Module board in
> Gimp its size is usually 19mb and looks good in Vassal engine, but way

Our current upload limit is something like 75MB, IIRC. You shouldn't
bump into that just because of a 19MB map.

> to high for download Module. After I add everything else in the Module
> like cards, pieces etc. the mbs grow. rdmorrs reply helped the board go
> from 19mb to 788kb using indexed palette and yes it does effect the
> quality thats why I did not do the same with my cards. It seems the best
> way to keep your Module board low in kbs is just as the manual says scan
> the game board. Thats fine if your creating a Module of a game that
> already exists and have a good clear scan or a file of the game. But
> when it comes to creating your own board in a graphic program like Gimp
> or Photoshop its harder to do this and keep the kbs low. Of course I may
> be doing something wrong and thats why I brought this question to the
> Forum for help and advice. Most of my boards are 2400x1400 and right off
> the bat in Gimp I'm at 19mb before I even download it to vassal. I
> appreciate your help and reply, but I'm just not sure how most
> designers here can come out with a complete game especially ones with
> lots of graphics on board and cards and many pieces all under 15-10mb.
> Thanks

Provide an example module where you're having this problem and I'll
take a look at it.

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Re: Modules designed under 10mb. How?

Postby bhfredjenni » June 20th, 2017, 7:25 pm

Compare A&A Module 8,785 KB to Star Trek: The Dice Game Module 99,896 KB. Now grant it this was my first Module and I'm sure there are many mistakes. I'm still learning Gimp graphics and Vassal Engine and I really enjoy Vassal program and making your own games. It's probably that I've only got just over a year doing this and seeing Modules coming out with so little KBs just makes me feel I'm doing things wrong. I will PM you one of the Modules I'm working on now. Thanks again for your help.
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Re: Modules designed under 10mb. How?

Postby bhfredjenni » June 20th, 2017, 8:21 pm

I sent them to uckelman@nomic.net I wasn't sure how to PM the Module files from this site. Sherlock Holmes:
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Re: Modules designed under 10mb. How?

Postby bhfredjenni » June 20th, 2017, 8:22 pm

The Dice Game, Macao Solo, Le Havre Modules
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Re: Modules designed under 10mb. How?

Postby uckelman » June 21st, 2017, 4:32 pm

The Sherlock Holmes module is small; the largest image in full RGB is only 2.8MB. The Macao Solo module is 41MB, which is still well under our upload limit.

You might be able to shave off a few MB by using a PNG optimizer (such as optipng) on the PNGs. You could shave about 5MB off the Le Havre module that way, and about 1MB off the Macao module.

If a module seems much larger than you expect, you should check images/ for images which are no longer in use.
I suggest checking the Le Havre module for images which aren't used.
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Re: Modules designed under 10mb. How?

Postby bhfredjenni » June 21st, 2017, 8:34 pm

Thanks again for the quick reply, yes the Sherlock Holmes module image board is the first one I have made through Gimp not using an image download. After submitting Star Trek The Dice Game module last year I was trying to learn how to design modules with a lot less KB. Just like this month with the release of Terraforming Mars module with only 10.4MB is pretty good. There has to be a way to do the same thing with Macao and Le Havre when designing the modules. That's what I'm trying to learn and I believe it has to do with the Image you use for the board. Like would it be better to take a screen shot of the completed board in Gimp and use the image as a jpg then download that into Vassal? I don't know I'm too new at this but something is working right, A&A uses a big image board and with lots of pieces but manages a 2.29MB module. WOW! That's amazing. I will keep researching and trial by error. Vassal is very challenging and lots of fun. Thanks
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