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jesuisbenjamin
12-04-2011, 05:26 PM
Hi there,

I am working on a map for a diplomacy game board. The map's style is adapted to other illustration found in the game such as this card illustration:

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So here in attachment you will find the map (work in progress). I am working on city names and as you can see, I am writing them on banners, above the city. There are two banners currently, one for London which has thicker edges and one for Amsterdam, with thinner edges. Which one do you think is most fitting the style of the map so far? I personally have the feeling Amsterdam's too thin, and looks too detailed in comparison to rough edges elsewhere.

Do you think it will be OK to have banners all over?

I intend to add some more illustrations in between (mountains, forests, rivers, various characters).

Please let me know your opinion / feedback. Thanks :)

Lukc
12-04-2011, 05:33 PM
I'd find it hard to choose. I prefer the shape of the London banner, but the Amsterdam line thickness seems better.

anstett
12-04-2011, 05:37 PM
I would echo Lukc on this, the Amsterdam components feel better together but I like the shape of the London scroll.

BOB

jesuisbenjamin
12-04-2011, 05:59 PM
Well, there will be about 8 different shapes in total, otherwise it would look odd. So we agree on thickness, cool :) Thanks.

tilt
12-04-2011, 06:03 PM
I think, I'd go for something in between, the Amsterdam seems a bit thin, close to pixelating. However, I think having banner all over the map, might be a tad much - one way to test it is to just copy on banner all over to get a feel for it :)

jesuisbenjamin
12-04-2011, 07:59 PM
Ok, after doing a quick test, it becomes obvious the banner idea is not that great after all :|

I could make them smaller, but that would not be OK on a board game. Although, after considerations, other games have ridiculously small names for their regions (eg. Diplomacy, Risk). So here is a try too at smaller banners.

Anyway, perhaps the entire banner idea should not be used, so I tried banner free too.

Any other suggestion on how to label the cities?

atpollard
12-04-2011, 10:20 PM
Airports use 3 letter aberviations to identify them, so a short abreviation with a legend off to the side might work.

Midgardsormr
12-05-2011, 02:19 AM
The texture is not terribly strong, and the cities are reasonably well spaced out. Have you considered going without banners and just making the labels about the size that they would have been if they were on the banners? You might need a little bit of padding around them if they crossed a border line, especially where they cross coastlines. Your city density is roughly similar to that of Ticket to Ride: Europe, so a label size similar to that board would probably work out well for you.

Lukc
12-05-2011, 02:45 AM
Or you could try stretch out the names through the whole province? Make them province names instead, obviating the need for labels? Just thinking here ...

jesuisbenjamin
12-05-2011, 05:53 AM
Thanks for the feedback. I think the banner idea has to be dropped off.
@Atpollard: it is technically OK to abbreviate, but that would really affect the atmosphere of the game. The map contributes to the role-playing and if the game were a taking place in modern times it would be fine I guess. This one is a 18th-19th Century cartoonish theme.
@Lukc: I also had this idea indeed. Cities are favoured over regions, because they have less political meaning. Regions are often a-historical, especially with the silly boundaries I have made here. It was something that, even as a kid, I disliked about Risk, which came up with an unrealistic map. (It didn't stop it from being s success though). I will consider this option though.
@Midgard: So yes, I think it's the best option so far. I've tried increasing enough so it does not need to overlap and so avoid padding. Some cities are written in water like Copenhagen, and it goes well. Other cities with longer names perhaps look a bit odd: Amsterdam, Edinburgh, Stockholm and Constantinople are such cases.

What do you think?

Lukc
12-05-2011, 06:14 AM
Not all the names have to be straight. You could set some on curves, that way you would also solve the Amsterdam and Constantinople (Istanbul) problems ... Also, you might consider using Turkish names for the Turkish cities, if you're using Salonika instead of Thessalonica. Hmm ... but then you again have Helsingfors instead of Helsinki, but Rome instead of Roma. You should stick to a single standard for naming the cities, I think. Either all in English (or language of choice) or all in national or era-appropriate national languages.

Also, a possible typo. I think you mean Minsk, not Pinsk, in the Belarus region.

jesuisbenjamin
12-05-2011, 06:27 AM
Hi Lukc,

Yes, I could curve the names, but doesn't it look funny if some names are curved while others are straight?

The names are all in English as far as I know, the alternative names like Constantinople, Christiana or Salonika are historical names, rather than indigenous names. I have looked up older maps of 18th Century in English and history sources for that. And Pinsk is a city in Belarus too :) (Minsk was too close to Vilnius).

tilt
12-05-2011, 06:40 AM
personally I think I'd curve all the names, that often makes them seem more a part of the map :)

jesuisbenjamin
12-05-2011, 07:30 AM
@Tilt: you mean across the region? With or without banners?

tilt
12-05-2011, 08:56 AM
across the region but without banners imho :)

jesuisbenjamin
12-06-2011, 05:59 PM
OK,

I modified the map so as to label regions instead of cities, but I find a bit dull now and perhaps that is because the nice yellow stars added a nice touch to the map. Anyway, I will add other decorative elements to the map, so it may compensate. The other thing I don't like so much about it, is the regions names, which are completely mixed up. There are Roman-Latin names mixed with English, there are toponyms mixed with political names etc. It is messy.

What do you think?

I've also adapted the urban version of the map, so as to have shorter names where necessary.

Silverwulfe
02-09-2012, 01:19 PM
Definitely the one with the stars. The city-state feeling is much stronger. Too bad you would have trouble with some of the names on flags... because that definitely could work on this. It would also give you a thematic way to shorten the long names by having it follow the contours of the flag and allow you to chop it off without breaking your perspective. Might be a pain to do though...