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Finis
08-25-2009, 08:30 PM
Hi there,

I don't recall if any of you remember, as it's been almost a year since I posted. But here I am again, trying to get a campaign map for a new DnD game I am going to start soon.

This time I kind of wanted to just draw a neat looking map, and then once I was satisfied with that, put in the cities and countries sort of -- organically. (where they would logically seem to go in the land)

So.. here is my semi-final pass at the land itself. The scale is not in.. but it's roughly the same size as the UK in height. Please critique at your leisure, I am including the full rez version, so it's pretty big (3200x3200) so the detail can be seen.

Obviously, you can tell I used Pasis' wonderful tutorial and techniques, and then experimented further as I went.

Edit (hey the link to the file!) http://www.shadowlandbbs.net/images/ze_map_004-wip.jpg

Ascension
08-25-2009, 09:06 PM
Looks pretty good. I'm not sure about the braided rivers but at least they look interesting :) Volcano looks good too.

Finis
08-25-2009, 09:16 PM
Yeah, I was kind of modeling them after some of the google maps images of the larger rivers in Asia. I think I over did it though.

Ascension
08-25-2009, 10:10 PM
Maybe if you tightened up the spacing on the loops? I dunno.

ravells
08-26-2009, 05:02 AM
Looking great! Quick tip: on your landmass bevel, don't use white as the highlight colour, use a lighter shade of the landmass colour (green) - it usually makes the bevel look a lot nicer.

Steel General
08-26-2009, 07:05 AM
Looking good so far, my only 'nit-picks' were covered by Ascension & Ravells.

Looking forward to seeing it develop.

Finis
08-26-2009, 01:20 PM
thanks for the comments and advice.

Here is the next stage:

http://www.shadowlandbbs.net/images/ze_map_005-wip.jpg


I've added some terrain texture to a few locations (the North west coastal islands, and the rainforest in the southeast, and my favorite, the crevas in the desert) and of course, cities and roads. I am not sold on the farming fields and it has been very hard to judge scale for me. Trying to get a balance between 'semi real' and still having the iconic representation on the map.

please let me know what you think :D

Ascension
08-26-2009, 05:02 PM
I think your farmland looks great, as does everything else.

Finis
08-30-2009, 04:40 PM
Update

http://www.shadowlandbbs.net/images/ze_map_006-wip.jpg

Added more population areas and finally some labeling.. still toying with the look. I want it to be obvious, but not detract from the landscape of the map.

Steel General
08-30-2009, 06:14 PM
Looks nice, my only suggesting would be to blur/lower the opacity of the borders.

Finis
08-31-2009, 02:15 AM
heh, yeah, I realized after I posted it that while I'd left the opacity up to draw them, my intention was always to turn it down some. you'll see in the next update as it's not worth another update just to see that.


At the moment my to-do list is:
* Make a layer for climate, something to show visually what 'average' weather is like. This will be a layer toggled off for the political view, but on for showing to players once or twice.

* Make a layer that labels geographical locations. I tried it with the countries and it was very crowded, I need to make a new group for landscape labeling that can be toggled separately


Probably, when the finalized version goes up on my campaign wiki, I'll have three or four versions of the map with different top labeling layers showing to illustration political, geographical, climatology and one or two others that may be needed. I don't think an elevation map is needed, as I think it's pretty clear where the high's and lows are without any topographical data.

Coyotemax
08-31-2009, 06:03 AM
I'd almost missed the volcano in the west, nice touch :)

I kinda like this one. It's a lot less busy than mine, but that's a good thing I think. less things to distract from your roads and towns (and nice farms too).

Finis
08-31-2009, 04:55 PM
the textures are all Pasis, so I can hardly take credit for them :-)

ravells
08-31-2009, 06:28 PM
Get rid of the horrid borders (as SG said and as you're doing) and it'll look fantastic!

Finis
08-31-2009, 07:56 PM
How is this (http://www.shadowlandbbs.net/images/krizenisles.jpg) for borders?

Immolate
08-31-2009, 08:56 PM
Finis, this is a big map. Really, really big. The thin fonts you are using seem inadequate. I think you'd find a larger, blockier font would "fit" in the world better. You can make them translucent to keep them from feeling like they are obscuring things.

Not saying this is good, just suggesting the concept. You could easily make it work for you by carefully selecting the font.

1643116432

Finis
08-31-2009, 09:32 PM
I get what you are saying and I think you're right. The major problem (and it's a small problem really, just the only problem) is that since moving to my new computer... my font library is... lacking...

That is my humble excuse. But you're are right really. I'll see if I can't find a better font.


On a side note. While I was writing up the history of this place, i found myself needing to know where these people came from (as the humans are not native to the island) so I drew up this quick sketch in photoshop.

The problem is when I did so I realized how... sqaure my original landmasses were in formation and so it looks... awkward.

Immolate
08-31-2009, 10:05 PM
I think they are fine.

Finis
09-04-2009, 06:32 PM
Update, font change to something I think works much better.

http://www.shadowlandbbs.net/images/krizenisles-wip.jpg

Ascension
09-04-2009, 08:00 PM
Looks like my beloved Fortunaschwein...an art nouveau font with just a touch of old world appeal. I, for one, love it ;)

Finis
09-04-2009, 08:26 PM
right in one haha!

Finis
09-07-2009, 12:47 AM
The Finished political map.

http://www.shadowlandbbs.net/d20/maps/krizenisles.jpg

Thanks for the pointers and encouragement along the way. The next step is to tackle some close ups of a couple of the larger cities the campaign will center around, and somehow find the time to make some decent combat scale maps -- which I have never done before!

Ascension
09-07-2009, 01:29 AM
Dude, that's sweet. I love the giant whirlpool and I think that I can see each individual tree. Well done.

Steel General
09-07-2009, 08:43 AM
Very nice!

Love the whirlpool too... though I'm not a big fan of the font, but that's a personal preference.