Exporting large portions as .osm

Alright I’m working with a small group of indie game developers and we’re waiting for the two guys that do the programming to finish modifying the game engine before we can really do anything else, so most of us have been working on little projects, and a couple of us have started to do a little bit of work on a kind of FPS/RTS combination.

Basically, it’s a game kind of styled like DEFCON only more active and in depth, I guess. Instead of just having an overview of the world, you can zoom in closer to manage forces more effectively, and take control of individual units. We have a working prototype of it made that I did a while ago, but obviously on a really small scale (I used some ‘cities’ that I generated with a quick greeble script in 3DS Max), and want to start work on seeing if it’s viable to expand it into a full and detailed world map.

I’ve been using Procedural’s City Engine a little bit (one of my focuses for study at college is architecture), and we’re planning on basically stitching together the .osm street data, and generating buildings from that and then exporting it out and making it workable in the game engine. But, fro what I have been able to figure out, the maximum size that I can export as .osm is a .5x.5 cell, and the entire map is something like 360x170 which equates out to a little over 60,000 cells times two to export (which I estimate will take some 100 to 200 man hours to do, plus the time importing it into the program and then putting it together). Not exactly the most fun thing to do, and we don’t have a much better idea of how to go about it. Even if we didn’t make it into a game, it wouldn’t be a terrible idea for a project for class either.

So is there a way to export a larger area as a .osm file so that we don’t need to spend several weeks doing nothing but this? It gets pretty tedious, I think I exported like forty of the .5 cells before going insane.

This sounds like an interesting application of the data and something that should be possible. But please don’t use the osm API or the export tab for this sort of bulk export, as the API servers have a very limited capacity and are only really meant for editors.

Instead OSM publishes its data in so called “planet files” which are complete dumps of the OSM data and thus use much less OSM server resourses than the API calls that have to be pulled out of a database for each call. There are also country sized extracts if you don’t want to deal with the entire data which is pretty huge.

You will find more details on the wiki at http://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Planet

Please also make sure you are aware of the Creative Commons Share Alike CC-BY-SA license on the data. ( http://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/OpenStreetMap_License )

See also XAPI http://wiki.openstreetmap.org/wiki/Xapi