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Langy
01-30-2012, 12:29 AM
I'm working on making a proper map for an RPG campaign world for a game I'm planning inspired by various ancient myths and legends. I don't have much experience with map-making - I've created a few, but all of them were pretty basic and nothing like I want for this. I followed Tear's Sederan tutorial in creating these maps, with a few tweaks here and there.

So far, I've made two completely separate maps. I decided the first one both wasn't good-looking enough and was too low-resolution for my uses (it was 'only' 2500x1000px). So, I remade it over yesterday and today at 10000x5000px - damned thing got too big for the PSD file format and I had to save it as a PSB. The new map is too large to really use as-is (even as a JPG it's 8 MB), but its detail seems perfect for digital regional maps.

I've included a full-resolution (1600x1200px) regional map of Europe and a 2500x1250px whole-world map.

The map is intended to be very obviously Earth, but a different Earth. Coastlines aren't intended to match up, some features are completely new (such as the channel cutting Africa in half), there are a few extra islands and one new continent, etc.

I still need to add country borders, labels, etc. I also might shrink Greenland a bit, cutting off the northern section somewhat. I also need to get a decent looking map border, and I'd like it to eventually look like a cloth map, complete with folds/etc. Wish I could make it look hand-drawn, or possibly hand-shaded, but I'm sure that's not going to happen without redoing the whole thing.

I have no idea if the graticules are accurate for this kind of map projection (or what projection this might be), but they're really there to look cool and help navigation, not to be 100% accurate to reality.


Thanks for any suggestions/comments/criticism.


First attempt:

41662

Second attempt, full world:

41664

Second attempt, full-resolution Europe:

41663

Langy
01-31-2012, 01:00 AM
Here's a new version of the full world, with some edits (primarily removing Greenland entirely) and adding a border. Now I need to find a decent way to make the map look like it's on paper, if at all possible. Also, labeling/etc. Blah.

41711

Lukc
01-31-2012, 03:44 AM
This looks pretty neat. One thing that strikes me, though, is that your graticules seem incised into a matrix rather than painted on (so it doesn't look like paper, more like a painting on a tiled surface - which is pretty cool, if you think about it) and that your major mountains might need a bit more "oomph", a slight dash of verticality and more of a sense of "looming" and "towering" :)

dangerdog15
01-31-2012, 09:58 PM
This is a very good looking map!:)
And as always Luka has some great advice.

Langy
02-01-2012, 01:49 PM
I've altered the mountain peaks layer to have a steeper slope and be Embossed rather than the current inner bevel; I hope that'll help make the mountains look more like they're sticking out. I'm also thinking about making it carved in stone, rather than be a paper map. Might need to go through the layers and change the bevels from 'up' to 'down' for that to work properly, and it might work better as a grayscale picture, too.

Here's the new version; it's at 25% resolution (50% linear resolution).

41779

Javaman333
02-03-2012, 04:13 AM
Very nice, would love to hear more about the back story even if that isn't the point of this thread :)

Agent009
02-10-2012, 07:41 PM
This looks interesting

Lalaithion
02-10-2012, 08:19 PM
Just for reference; it looks like it is an equirectangular projection, and the graticule matches that assumption. However, you should consider removing the half-row at the top and the bottom; that area literally can not exist on a globular map.

Langy
02-12-2012, 03:12 PM
Excellent - thanks Lalaithion! I'm curious what you mean about the half-row being impossible, though. Would you mind explaining what you mean by that? The graticule just before it should be the 80 degree N/S graticule; shouldn't it (normally) extend out to 90 degrees?

I'm trying to remember why I put the border right there, rather than at the actual 90/180 degree marks, but am coming up with a blank. Perhaps I should do that when I get around to updating the map.

I need to find some appropriate icons to stick on the map now - I'd prefer to use semi-3D pictures of little cities and the like (something vaguely like these (http://icons.iconarchive.com/icons/aha-soft/perfect-city/icons-390.jpg), but appropriate for the setting and possibly a little darker).

Either that, or I'll have to just use symbolic representations. Bleh.

Lalaithion
02-12-2012, 04:09 PM
After taking a closer look at your map, i realized that there is a much weirder problem going on than miscounting graticules. The equator of the earth and the center graticule on your map are not the same. The equator on the earth goes through Ecuador; your center graticule runs through Panama. The equator also sits below India; the center graticule on your map intersects with India. Your map, instead of going from 85N to 85S, goes from 95N to 75S.

sorry about the confusion.

Langy
02-20-2012, 02:24 AM
After taking a closer look at your map, i realized that there is a much weirder problem going on than miscounting graticules. The equator of the earth and the center graticule on your map are not the same. The equator on the earth goes through Ecuador; your center graticule runs through Panama. The equator also sits below India; the center graticule on your map intersects with India. Your map, instead of going from 85N to 85S, goes from 95N to 75S.

sorry about the confusion.

That's actually because I intentionally moved the landmasses northwards a bit, not because the equator is in a different position. Remember, this isn't a picture of actual-Earth, it's a picture of intentionally-not-Earth-but-somewhat-similar.

bartmoss
02-20-2012, 03:59 AM
This is interesting, I always loved "parallel earths", and right now I am doing something somewhat similar with one of my maps (though mine is much less similar to actual earth than yours). Is there a particular design decision to shift the landmasses northward?

Langy
02-22-2012, 12:36 PM
It mainly had to do with expanding Antarctica a bit, so the coastline wouldn't be all stretched out due to the projection; I'm not entirely sure how to go about realistically distorting the map to make it look correct.

Robulous
02-22-2012, 01:27 PM
Ooh - Atlantis! Nice. Though Atlantis seems to have more oceanic shelf/wiggly-undersea-ness (whatever the wiggly lines mean) than other coastlines, that may be the look you're going for but it seems a little inconsistent.

bartmoss
02-23-2012, 01:02 AM
It mainly had to do with expanding Antarctica a bit, so the coastline wouldn't be all stretched out due to the projection; I'm not entirely sure how to go about realistically distorting the map to make it look correct.

It's a sphere - you'll have to stretch the northern bits of Russia, Europe, and Canada more to make up for it.

Check out the Wikipedia page, it has a good image that visualizes distortions: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Equirectangular_projection

alanrex
02-23-2012, 02:30 AM
the styling of these is very nice