View Full Version : Map of the Planes

12-07-2009, 03:22 AM
Here is a rather half-baked stab at a planar map, based largely on the D&D standard. I'm putting it up not because I love it, but because I love the idea of mapping the planes, which transcend normal spatial conceptions. It's something I'd like to work on more intensely, so I suppose I'm just opening this page up as a precursor of things to come.

I think utilizing a 3d representation is key, but beyond that, I could see this mapping exercise going any number of directions. I would love any suggestions you might have.


Steel General
12-07-2009, 06:26 AM
Neat little map!

If you wanted to give it a bit more of an artistic bend you could do things like adding flames to the Plane of Fire or replacing the Mechanus with a set of interlocking gears, etc.

12-07-2009, 10:57 AM
Totally dig this as a "schematic" map of the planes. It could indeed be prettied up with some of the iconic elements of the planes but then I think it becomes something else (which is fine too).

I have always liked the way the traditional D&D planes were represented in (most of) the Planescape material (2E) - usually sketchy hand-drawn affairs that gave the feeling that the whole thing was rather vague (because it really was...stuff might be in a different place next time you go).

When I see a map done with 3D elements (or straight lines in general) my mind thinks, "Ah, the cartographer knew something about the subject he/she was mapping: 'This disc is such-and-such radius and sits however-far miles above that other disc.'" I say, if you try to incorporate iconic elements, that you should use the 3D layout as a starting point and go with a more loose, artistic interpretation.

Looking forward to seeing what you do with it. :) I think this is old school? Forgetting my D&D here but I think "Nexus" is the "Outlands" or some such in 2E? Is there a Sigil in this one?

Oh, and, repped! Welcome to the forums and thanks for sharing a map.

12-07-2009, 12:32 PM
Thanks for the feedback.

I think that eventually I will want to replace the simple circles with more iconic representations of the planes, but even more I would like to focus on my mapping of the structure of the planes. How do they relate? How many systems can be overlaid into one cosmological chart? For example, do the physical cycles of sun, moon and seasons somehow relate to the planes? How do I represent planes that are co-extant? How do I represent connected planes vs. disconnected planes? Is there a way to chart the gods in relation to the planes? Also, I'm starting to think that the LN and CN planes (Mechanus and Maelstrom) should not be distinct planar zones, but different types of underlying structure that touch all of the other planes, ie Mechanus is the gear works that keeps everything in place, Maelstrom is the swirling chaos of all the in-between space. How do I represent THAT?

I'm interested in creating a sort of Renaissance-style map that draws inspiration from woodcuts and early scientific instruments. I've attached some images I find particularly inspirational. I'm afraid that today I'll have to be all talk, no drawing, as this lunch break is pretty much all the free time I have. But I figured I might as well share my thoughts.


PS. Nexus is quite similar to Sigil (but without the Outlands). It is a city of gates that is co-extant with the Material Plane and linked to all of the Outer Planes. Its primary purpose is as the receiving point for the souls of the dead, where they are judged by the God/dess of Balance and sent to their respective afterlives. It is the only official neutral territory in the multiverse, where angels and demons come as ambassadors of their planes. They theoretically could bump shoulders in the street without conflict, but things are never quite that simple...

12-07-2009, 01:49 PM
Love Planar maps. They is always sooooo......cool!

12-07-2009, 02:13 PM
Great inspiration images!

12-07-2009, 05:49 PM
There are basically two versions of planar maps out there in general, that I've come across anyway.

"Astrolabe" and "Node Diagram".

D&D3.5 planar diagrams are all related closer to the "Astrolabe" concept. A large 3-dimensional device/object where each part is connected similarly to a clock or sculpture.

Personally, from my mathematics background, I prefer nodular or Venn-style diagrams of Planar Cosmology.

02-20-2010, 04:01 AM
I like the way you've represented the planes so far, but I think a few more things might give it a better feel and artistic touch.

I'd try having a sun and moon (splitting the image with day and night )on opposite sides (top/bottom) and maybe some sort of arrow or sign showing movement/rotation.
Then I'd use some sort of texture mixed with hand drawn elements on each of the planes surfaces.. maybe even go so far as to give them a bit of thickness too (making it a very thin cylinder).

To show a plane connected, have a solid colored line, those not connected have a dashed or dotted line branching off.
Where each branch is, above the plane I would show the deity or deities that reside or rule there.

I'd also try to show some sort of physical representation for each type of plane. As someone said earlier flames for fire.. etc etc.

Looks good so far.. don't think I was any help, but hope you continue your work!

Have some rep

Greason Wolfe
02-20-2010, 10:22 AM
This might be worth a look. Some truly interesting renditions of the planes.


In the meantime, here's my little bit of Rep that I can add.