View Full Version : The floating island Kingdom of Helios - First attempt at a regional map

02-16-2014, 06:58 PM
This is my first attempt at a regional map.

Some background: this is the kingdom map for my D&D 3.5 campaign world that I've made up. Without going into pages of lore and history - it's basically an ocean world with floating island kingdoms. The Kingdom my PCs are starting in is the island Kingdom of Helios. This is the basic regional map for it that I've done up using RobA's gimp tutorial here (http://www.cartographersguild.com/tutorials-how/1142-%5Baward-winner%5D-using-gimp-create-artistic-regional-rpg-map.html).

I have yet to add the rivers or mountain ranges for scale, but I'll upload a sketch or two when I get home for a better idea of the size here. There's a bit of added challenge of having to do sky and "sea" - the waters in the bay are attached to the island (magically, woo!).

Any critique or advice is appreciated. I'm fairly new at GIMP and very new at map making.


03-01-2014, 01:47 AM
Here's my initial sketches for the island. Couldn't figure out the scale I wanted very well or what is appropriate for a kingdom.

So from left to right is the process I went through designing my island in the sky. First couple sketches made it to be just a giant castle and surrounding city taking up the entire island. The second sketch gets me to a giant city stretching the entire east side of the island, with the "towns" and the castle/mage college (housed in one building) is the size of the towns . . . which just didn't work in my head even in magical fantasy land terms. Finally I settled with a bigger region, villages are the black, filled in circles, larger towns are squares, and cities are empty circles. The spread of my capital ( the sun in the middle of the map) is completely out of proportion for the land mass that I have and the sizes of the other cities.

After reading up on how to place rivers correctly, I'm glad I haven't started on them yet because I seem to be breaking some rules already. I want to make them as natural as possible despite magic having such a direct effect on this landscape. I'll need to work on that.


03-01-2014, 01:29 PM
Coming along nicely! I agree that the last map gives you a more natural feel/roominess/area to work with.

03-01-2014, 08:51 PM
Interesting project! I'm looking forward to your next update. Your latest sketch looks like a good starting point.

03-01-2014, 08:55 PM
Nice sketch-work silverbonds.