View Full Version : The Western Heartlands

05-05-2009, 12:48 AM
Howdy Folks

I've been taking a bit of a break from Avani and someguy asked if I could help him out on one of his projects. He's got a lot of the groundwork done on a series of maps which makes what I'm helping him out with a whole lot easier.

Anyway, this will likely be a series of maps as well. This first one done in very similar style to the "Comprehensive map of Avani"

Link for anyone interested:

I've presented the original map from Someguy and the subsequent rough-ins that I've been working on so you can see a little bit of the progress.

Starting with a reworking of the coastline to add complexity and then filling in the forests where they were originally marked. Next adding in the mountain ranges. Then adding some texture and subtly to the colors. Finally adding in a woodcut effect around the coastlines.

Still to do is a lot of labeling, borders, compass, key, rivers, cities, outposts, landmarks, navigation lines, and much much more.

More to come! Thanks


05-05-2009, 12:59 AM
Ah Nice. Fare better than that CC3 map I made.

05-05-2009, 05:38 AM
Looking great so far. I especially like the woodcut coastal effect. Is this done in Photoshop? And if so, is the woodcut filter a free one? :)

05-05-2009, 10:49 AM
It is actually done in photoshop. The woodcut isn't actually a filter but rather it's a technique that uses a conversion to a bitmap at an extremely high dpi. A similar tutorial can be found at http://www.io.com/~sjohn/uresia-maps.htm.

There are other methods to the woodcut, but I find this to be among the easiest and fastest. It's not always the most flexible tho. For greater flexibility, I recommend the technique from Butch Curry of Zombie Nirvana games. He has put together a video tutorial regarding the woodcut effect and posted them on youtube. The woodcut one specifically is http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eU7bCUxMdmQ and part two is http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sBJOx1SpTI0.

In fact, I wholeheartedly recommend watching ALL of his tutorials starting with the first one if you are serious about mapping in Photoshop. His tutorials are what really got me started. http://www.youtube.com/ZombieNirvana

You can even find him on the forums here under the name Palehorse. One of the many industry professionals who like helping out us little guys. ;-)

05-05-2009, 12:10 PM
Ah, thanks for that info. I'll check those videos and your method out. :)

05-11-2009, 01:24 AM
Just an update. Rivers, borders and more added. Still lots to add in and clean up. Not sure I'm happy with the way the towns look, but we'll see. Got to give them time to grow on me.

Anyway, until next time...

05-11-2009, 03:08 AM
Its looking great. I have to agree with you a little about the towns and such. They look a little too much like the CC3 icons.

Steel General
05-11-2009, 06:19 AM
To me the problem with the towns is that they seem 'heavy & dark' compared to everything else. Other than that I think they look fine.

07-09-2009, 01:37 AM
My apologies to SomeGuy for making him wait so long for updates. I have been absolutely swamped at work and what little time I've had these past few months have been spent with family and desparately trying to get other projects off the ground. That said and done, I've got a minor update.

After struggling greatly (and still struggling I might add) with hand drawn town and castle symbols I simply gave up and added a generic circle to mark towns so I may start labeling. The circles will be replaced later once I finally create some brushes that don't make me shudder. I'll try to post some of my symbols so far when I get a chance. I'm rather embarrassed to show them to be honest.

Still, here is an update to the map. The labeling and enhancements to the rivers and other small tweaks do help the polish of the map. There are still many other details to add as well, but in the meantime, enjoy.



Steel General
07-09-2009, 06:38 AM
Good to see you 'back in the saddle'...

Coming along nicely...there is an unlabeled city east of Port Westdawn.

07-09-2009, 09:20 AM
Nice map you've got there... couple of unlabeled cities up north.

07-16-2009, 11:57 PM
Finally a breakthrough!

I think I've managed to come up with some city icons that I don't completely hate. Man... that took a while. Here is an updated map using the new Town Brushes. Let me know what you think!


Ironmetal... I LOVE that avatar! Still waiting on some names for cities around the map. We'll get there.

07-17-2009, 02:11 AM
Nice towns, indeed!

Steel General
07-17-2009, 07:32 AM
I think those icons match nicely with your terrain symbols, etc.

07-17-2009, 08:13 AM
Yeah, the symbols work well with the rest of the map.
The symbols are nice-looking, although I like the church and the North White Lake city symbol better than the other town symbols. The church and North White Lake city symbol seem to have more details than for example the symbol for the town of Landown.