View Full Version : April 2014 Entry - The Abyssal Colonies

04-11-2014, 04:14 PM
I should be working now… but nah. I'll map hell instead. Just a little.
My idea is a bit unrefined so far, but basically, I'm planning a map in something like this style (http://www.davidrumsey.com/luna/servlet/detail/RUMSEY~8~1~205498~3002457:Mediterranean-Sea---inset--Barcelon?sort=Pub_List_No_InitialSort) (brought to my attention by Vorro), as if someone living in the now independent state of Hell, in the 1960s, drew a map of the colonial period when the underworld was invaded by colonial powers who couldn't find more land to conquer in the regular world. You know, when there's no more room in hell, the dead will walk on Earth… but the other way around. And steampunk and stuff. And a style I haven't tried, which is usually fun. Here's the first step; coastlines, rivers and sketched mountains. The coloring is completely temporary, just to make it a little easier to see what's going on… which may have been pretty futile…

### Latest WIP ###

04-12-2014, 08:27 AM
that is such a cool land shape! A nice idea as well.

04-12-2014, 10:54 AM
Thanks! Here's a small update with more detailed mountains, and a new color test where darker color indicates lower land instead of the opposite, as in the style example. I think I like it better, it will give really strong contrast where the land meets water, and it also feels more intuitive to me that the lower areas are sort of shaded…

### Latest WIP ###

And the color mock-up:

04-14-2014, 08:02 PM
Great idea here! And a good shape too. Its interesting to see how you try new things.

04-17-2014, 12:08 PM
Thank you! :) Trying new things is a lot of fun, in my opinion! It doesn't always turn out very good, but at least I enjoyed finding that out!
This one will have to turn out pretty fantastic if I'm going to have a chance in this challenge though… There are some really amazing entries! And I haven't even come farther than a colored sea and some paint on the height lines.

### Latest WIP ###

04-18-2014, 09:41 AM
The shape of the land is very original and "in motion". I love your sea, but it has something a bit "angelic" to me :P
Anyway, I'm very curious to see it done with those numerous mountains!

04-18-2014, 12:22 PM
The shape of the land is very original and "in motion". I love your sea, but it has something a bit "angelic" to me :P
Anyway, I'm very curious to see it done with those numerous mountains!

Interesting, I was thinking tumultuous. Reminds me of a swirling storm of some kind. Very original like Ilanthar said.


04-21-2014, 11:23 AM
Thanks Ilanthar and Arsheesh! Interesting to hear your associations!
Hopefully this will look less angelic :P
### Latest WIP ###

I think I have abandoned the idea of a steampunk colonial era… It will probably show the "current" state of Hell instead, as it looked when the map was "drawn", sometime in the sixties. The colonial powers are still strong there though, and in this particular region the native demons are confined to the southwestern part, while the humans live primarily in the north and east. The opening to the underworld appeared somewhere in southern Russia (no idea why, just felt like that…), hence a large Eastern Europe presence. But the British of course have a little part of Hell too, because they are everywhere ;)

04-21-2014, 11:39 AM
The russians actually spear headed the digging of the deepest hole in the world to study the mantle of the earth. Some people believed it would end the world by causing an eruption or opening the gates of hell. The project was stopped before they got to the mantle because it got so hot that all the dirt from the earths crust kept melting and falling in on itself. I can't remember the name of the project or exactly where in russia it is, but your reason for choosing russia has some backing :D

And BTW its looking really awesome!

04-22-2014, 08:24 AM
By Lingon
Hopefully this will look less angelic

Indeed :D!! I knew you would do an awesome use of those mountains! Your water coloring is so inimitable and excellent! The red and yellow of the land clashes gorgeously with the white and blue of the seas now... It feels like a battle to me. And Hell is winning ;)!

- Max -
04-23-2014, 06:05 AM
This looks nice overall. I'm not entirely sold on the reliefs, the color inversion doesn't scream mountains elevations at the first look imho.

04-23-2014, 02:49 PM
Ilanthar: Thanks a lot! :D That's a really cool association, hehe…
Max: Thanks! I see what you mean, and I was worried that would happen. There's not much I can do about this anymore I'm afraid :/

Here's an update with graticule, more labels, and an attempt at a title/cartouche. I'm not happy with that attempt though, so I'll try to make something better there…

### Latest WIP ###

04-24-2014, 02:21 PM
Here's another type of cartouche, and a border at the same time… I'm actually quite happy with this one :) I've also removed the graticule over the land, leaving it in the water. I think it adds some balance, a little more weight to the sea, but it'd be easy to put the rest of the graticule back if it looks too weird. Added some more labels and changed some too.

### Latest WIP ###

04-26-2014, 08:50 AM
I guess I'm going in the right direction then :D Thanks for the likes!
Here is possibly the last update, though I might change some of the text still. I've finished the labeling (phew!) and written a block of story stuff to add some interest to the lower right corner. Not sure about the demon cities, I just made up some random fantasy names for them, but maybe they should be based on real languages. They were built by dead people, after all. But maybe they forgot their old language and made a new one. I think I'll go with that… :P

### Latest WIP ###

04-26-2014, 09:13 AM
That's really cool. You have a gap in your story text though (end of the first paragraph).

- Max -
04-26-2014, 10:23 AM
Also you might want to fix the inaesthetic spaces between words in the first sentences of the first paragraph.

04-27-2014, 05:10 AM
Ah, yeah, the text layout became pretty weird there. Maybe this is better?

### Latest WIP ###

Also, Slylok, I realized I never replied to your post! Sorry! That was a really interesting project, I wish I had remembered about that before I started this map… The style I chose would have been really outdated by the eighties (when the drilling was started, if I recall correctly), so I'll have to go with the supernatural explanation here though, hehe.

04-28-2014, 01:16 PM
I really love this, Lingon. This would've been an awesome setting for some Cold War James Bond movies... :D

04-29-2014, 02:43 PM
Thanks Diamond! Hehe, that could've been pretty cool :D "The Cold War is about to get hot…" *James Bond villain voice, presumably with heavy Russian fake-accent*

04-29-2014, 03:44 PM
The water still feel too welcoming to my taste. I'll post some example to inspire you if you choose to make your water more hellish.

or you can also look at what the mining industry is doing, you can find almost all the colors

04-30-2014, 04:09 PM
Thanks for the ideas, Azelor! The colors in this map are not meant to be actual colors, but… I get your point! Personally, I'm quite satisfied with the current look – this is not meant to be a very hellish hell, which I hoped to get across with the story text, plus I like how the blue looks next to the red if I may say so myself – but I will experiment with a grungier color if I have time, and see what it looks like :)

05-02-2014, 11:31 AM
Ok, last-day-update here! I tried making the sea more green-brown-ish, and though I liked it, it made the brighter land look out of place. Then I added a very faint tone of the same green-brown to the entire map to tie it together. It's not very different from the last version, but I'm more happy with this one. Thanks for making me try it, Azelor!

### Latest WIP ###

05-02-2014, 11:36 AM
I also think that the colors look better that way.