Landscaping and Disasters
The Landscaping tab contains several tools that allow for changes in the terrain, which can help to change the physical design of the town. Soil is a resource which is accumulated by reducing the height of land, and is used elsewhere to increase land height. This enables the construction of new coastlines or mountain ranges or perhaps the removal of an inconvenient mountain. It can sometimes be helpful to level terrain so buildings look better, and even be necessary for larger buildings like airports. The cost of shifting, leveling, softening or sloping terrain is ₡12.80 per cubic cell.
- Shift Terrain - Elevate by pressing the primary mouse button, lower with the secondary mouse button.
- Level Terrain - Use the secondary mouse button to select the target height, then use the primary button to flatten terrain to that height.
- Soften Terrain - Use the primary mouse button for a gentle smoothing effect. Use the secondary mouse button for a stronger effect.
- Slope Terrain - Click with the primary mouse button on one end of the area where the slope is to be located. With the secondary mouse button, click and drag from the other desired end back towards the first point to create the slope.
The brush intensity (the speed at which soil is added or removed) control may be set to one of three levels, shown looking like a bar graph with three bars. The size (area) of the brush may be set to one of three sizes, shown by circles.
When adding or removing soil from the landscape, it will come from or go to the "Soil Availability Meter" (a sort of temporary soil storage). When empty, no soil can be placed without first removing it from somewhere else. When full, no more soil can be removed without first emptying (at least partially) soil from the meter by placing the excess soil somewhere on the map. Soil can be dredged from under water, but beware this can sometimes cause flooding.
The game has a built-in mod Unlimited Soil - Landscaping without limits. The cost of moving soil is still in effect, but the soil available will not fill or deplete, which enables the player to add or remove as much soil as desired with the landscaping tools. Note that activating this built-in mod will disable Achievements, unless they are re-enabled by a mod from the workshop.
Pedestrian paths are narrow (single-cell) tracks which citizens will use in combination with roadside pavements and crosswalks to reach destinations on foot.
Upkeep for paths are a part of the "Parks, Plazas and Landscaping" budget, however they offer no entertainment value by themselves and are, practically, part of the transportation infrastructure. Paths are placed like roads, and can be straight or curved. Some paths can be elevated (with much steeper gradients than permitted for roads), allowing players to construct footbridges over major roads as well as other, more elaborate pedestrian systems. The pavement path and bike paths can tunnel.
Citizens are prepared to walk surprisingly long distances to their destinations, and an investment in footpath infrastructure can relieve a considerable burden from a city's roads. Citizens will also walk parts of journeys that also involve other transport methods. If a road dead-ends, and there is another road nearby, it can be helpful to link the dead-end to the other road with a pedestrian path to allow citizens on foot an easy way out.
There are several types of paths in the game, but apart from the differences detailed below, they are functionally identical. Paths can be connected to the sidewalks beside roads. Additionally paths can connect to some parks, allowing citizens to walk through these and enter/exit them without using the road.
Walls and Fences
Walls and Fences are placed using the same tools as roads, but cannot change elevation, only conform to terrain. They can be used alongside a road to remove the zonable areas. This can be useful if two roads run parallel closely enough for the zonable area to overlap, and you only want zoned area on one of the roads.
Maps come pre-loaded with areas of natural woodland. If you wish to add to these, a variety of different types of trees can be added at ₡10 per tree. Trees have no upkeep cost. Player-placed trees will support the forestry industry as much as naturally occurring woodland.
Trees will reduce noise pollution, but must be used in large numbers to see a significant effect. Tree-lined roads also reduce noise pollution from these roads and are available as part of the roads menu.
Trees affect parks. (Check this out and expand.)
Different trees are available in different map themes. Small Beech, Alder #2, Small Bush, Oak, Tree with Leaves, Tree with Leaves #2, Green Tree, Giant Redwood, Giant Redwood #2, Flowering Tree, Flowering Tree #2, Flowering Tree #3, Flowering Tree #4, Chinese Windmill Palm, Corsican Pine, Sugar Maple, and Yew are available in all themes. Additionally, these trees are available in the theme(s) they're listed beside:
- Boreal and European: Conifer #2, Pine, Conifer and Wild Conifer
- Temperate and Tropical: Large Bush
- Tropical: Palm Plant and Palm Tree
Player-placed trees will support forestry industry as much as naturally occurring woodland. Placing extra trees to increase forest density before building a forestry extraction building over it can increase the output of the extractor.
Use to place patches of vegetation at a cost of ₡10 per patch.
Place rocks to give the landscape some character. Rock types include small rocks, boulders, buttes and mesas. Larger formations may include caves and trees.
Rocks and rock formations range in cost ₡10 - ₡100.
Quays provide a nice finish along the edges where water meets land. (The "MoveIt!" mod and anarchy type mods can allow it to be placed in other areas.)
Flood walls can help to keep water out of your city.
|Available only with the Natural Disasters DLC enabled.|
In the Disasters tab of the Landscaping and Disasters menu there are 9 buttons for manually triggering natural disasters within the city. The player may activate one or more disasters of the same or differing types. There is a brief cool-down period for each disaster before it can be activated again. Some disasters start almost immediately, while others have a short delay before happening.
The intensity of all disasters (except "Collapse") can be controlled with a slider, with values from 1 - 10, with 10 being the most severe.
- Natural Disasters - for information on the "Natural Disasters" DLC.
- Disasters - for information on each disaster type.
- Disaster Services - for information on the services available to help with disaster response and early warning services.
- Pedestrian paths and trees, formerly found in the decoration menu, are, since Patch 1.4.0-f3, found in the "Landscaping" menu. After patch 1.6, the "Landscaping and Disasters" menu.
- The Walls and Fences section was added with the Parklife DLC.
- Mass Transit 1.7.0 Patch Notes, "Unlimited Soil - Landscaping without limits" Mod, Free Content in Patch 1.7.0, released alongside Mass Transit on 2017-05-18.
- Forum: Parklife Dev Diary #4: Maps and tree noise reduction - CO Emmi (Colossal Order), 2018-05-15
- Forum: Sunset Harbor Dev Diary #1: Fishing Industry - CO Emmi (Colossal Order) (2020-03-20)