Map Detail Work
I put another day's work into map detail today. I started with the power plant, mapping out its innards, and using that as a basis for placement of lights and access roads. The overall effect is much nicer, compared to the random lights used before. It's not quite as bright as some real-world power plants, but it's one of the most well-lit things in the city. And its unusual light colors make a nice contrast against the more mundane colors of the city grid.
I also put together a few other neighborhoods, for variety. One notable example is a "Neon Alley" near the DMC gates. It seemed logical to me that the area just inside the gates would be a lot like Times Square: a crowded pedestrian area flooded with lights and signage. So with that in mind, I illuminated the streets for several blocks around the gate, and added glowing signage to some rooftops.
I ended up detailing some other rooftops sprinkled around the city, too. Things like rooftop swimming pools, more landing pads, a few darkened parks, and even a string of lanterns denoting a rooftop market/terrace. Rochelle had a look at the new version, and felt it was getting better. She had a good suggestion for making the shape of the arcology easier to read, and it's looking much more convincing.
Finally, I added some red rooftop pulsing lights, after viewing some videos of skyscrapers in Tokyo. I was going to just paint the red dots onto the map, but after seeing a few videos like this, I realized just how prevalent and noticeable they are.
There's still room for more detail, but I think it's time to start making the locations that can be visited now. The map will probably seem pretty cool to a viewer the first time, and is pretty interesting to just sit and watch, which is what I was aiming for. But it's only meant to be watched for a few seconds before the user chooses a location, so I think it's time to focus on some of those locations :)
Building a city sure does take a while!