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How can I convert the map of the US to isometric format. How do you ensure that the angles that you are making are perfect? I mean in isometric maps even slight errors can cause difficulty.

Also any idea how do I ensure that the map is readable (understandable) in Isometric format?

i managed to make this in photoshop.

I want to know how to draw the lines of the states to ensure that they are correct.

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You want to create something like this ? – Dan Aug 1 '12 at 11:25
@Dan if thats the case then i wasted my time assuming it was for a Game ;)and would have to say it is off Topic. – AbstractChaos Aug 1 '12 at 11:59
@Dan - Yes! But more in age of empires or farmville style. – nishantcm Aug 1 '12 at 12:19
Could you explain the problems you are having? This question looks broad to the point of being unanswerable as it is... I suggest you start by learning about tile maps.… has plenty of good information on drawing isometric tiles. – tugs Aug 1 '12 at 19:11
The image you've edited in looks good. You've done it, good job! All you need to do is take each of those pixels as a tile and render it in your game. Tiling shouldn't lead to any bizarre distortions, the most you'll have to deal with is possible stretching in one axis or the other. – tugs Aug 7 '12 at 18:26

A possible solution is to use a heightmap of the usa, for example:

enter image description here

OpenTTD Heightmaps

However this may be a little big anyway you could then read this image pixel by pixel creating a tile with that relative height for that shade of color.. so say White (highest) and black is 0 (Lowest / Sea level) producing an accurate height listing of usa.

since you now have a array of heights you have no issues on the angle of isometric tiles


It is important to remember the HeightMap above is not seen in your game but read by your game to generate the tiles. (In this case this heightmap would need to be rotated by the angle of your tiles (i.e. like 45 degs)

When creating isometric tiles all the tiles ideally are the same angle rotated.

enter image description here

The Red/Blue line that intersect in center of the tile is the "Plane" the maps 0 height reference so in this case your sea level could be at this height. as the shade gets lighter you could increase height however this will make the terrain impassible as there no way up. To rectify this you would use a slope tile which is a block which is designed to look like the slope and can not be facing directly towards the viewport.

Here is an example of all I describe but you have to use your imagination to see that even tho it looks like blocks once textures are on it will look more realistic.


I was digging around and noticed Age of Empires 2 using a similar method to above (increasing the y coord of the tile) but also uses shading to darken inclines works well i think.

enter image description here

Hope this helps

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Oops!!! I wanted to make a map of USA kinda in Age of empires/ Farmville Style... Sorry for the misunderstanding. – nishantcm Aug 1 '12 at 10:21
Farmville is an isometric tilemap, age of empires too except its a style more defined not to. not to be (based on the map editors way of adding different cliffs etc to a map). I will update my answer with a bit more explanation. – AbstractChaos Aug 1 '12 at 10:58
@nishantcm OK i updated with what i believe you wanted, important to note that the usa map i showed is not a visual thing is is a way to STORE the data for varying heights on the land – AbstractChaos Aug 1 '12 at 11:58

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