View Full Version : New Member, Trying to make some decent maps.

01-14-2012, 08:01 AM
Hi all, I'm new here. After messing around with maps both on paper and in GIMP I've arrived here and am amazed at the quality people can get with GIMP. The tutorials I have followed have been very insightful and useful. So this is just a thread introducing myself.

The main reason I like to make maps (other than just for the enjoyment of it) is to create a world to creatively write with, for both role-playing and just for fun. I was wondering whether any of you have any tips on town/city placement and how many roads/other attractions should be on a map. I realise that it depends on scale.

So a bit of information about me. My name is Will, I'm from the UK and have just started university over here studying physics.

Thanks for all the awesome tutorials, the main ones I've followed so far are by Jon A so thanks to him.

01-16-2012, 01:03 AM
Welcome, ninjapenguin !

Placement of human features depends on so very many factors. Scale, sure - the larger the scale (smaller area), the more & smaller items will be shown. But also, WHEN is your setting? What's the culture? An archipelago could do with no roads at all; an underground city could technically be nothing BUT roads :-). The purpose of the map would matter too -- a topographic map or the like could make do with just enough cities and borders to make clear who owns the mountain range, what nations the river connects, and so forth. If 'tis a political map, you may need every settlement above village size. If it's the log of an adventurer, it might have just the places he's passed through.

So -- what's the style you're shooting for, and what's the purpose for your map or maps?

01-16-2012, 04:20 AM
Wow, I may have to have quite a bit of a think about all those questions because some of them I don't actually know the answer to. Thanks for your feedback, it was most enlightening into the sort of things I need to be thinking about.

01-16-2012, 05:20 AM
If you go into worldbuilding, here's a short list of stuff that helps:

evolutionary theory
human evolution and physical anthropology
anthropology in general (social, cultural, linguistic too)
political economy
economy in general


01-16-2012, 01:08 PM
Good job I'm not doing any of those subjects then :P

So I've done the landscape of my first map. It's not labelled or got any towns/roads on it yet, but I was wondering whether I could get your opinions on it.