PDA

View Full Version : Lykarnia - Big Iron Vault Commission



Ramah
12-31-2009, 05:45 PM
Ok, so I got the go ahead from Keith over at Big Iron Vault (http://www.bigironvault.com/) to post up WIP's of this map of his world of "Lykarnia" that I am doing as a commission for their "World of Lykarnia" RPG.
I'm not going to post many up, just this and maybe the finished product when I get there.
If you want to see more images of the map as it progresses then Keith has been posting a few over on this thread of his forum - http://www.penandpapergames.com/forums/showthread.php?t=14390

This image is not owned by me and is Copyright of Big Iron Vault so please, no copying.

Anyway... here's where I'm at so far with it:

19897

The general landmass shape and mountainous areas are based on the sketch that Keith sent me to work from.
The wonderful distressed paper background is from CM's distressed paper thread over in the mapping elements forum.

Steel General
12-31-2009, 06:20 PM
Looking good so far...but I expected no less.

Daelin
12-31-2009, 07:52 PM
I like it. And once you get forests and whatnot in there as well, I think it'll really take off. I find it curious, though, that the landmasses actually spill out over map border. Is this intentional?

Jaxilon
01-01-2010, 12:08 AM
This is going to be sweet!

Davros01
01-01-2010, 01:15 AM
very nice, i like the oversize mountains. harks to older maps.

Diamond
01-01-2010, 01:57 AM
Wow... just wow.

I think I just chipped a tooth from grinding my teeth in envy at your talent. :D

Gandwarf
01-01-2010, 08:14 AM
Very nice indeed Ramah. Can't wait to see you finish it...
Dont forget you are writing a novel, by the way ;)

Ascension
01-01-2010, 11:14 AM
Yep, I'm diggin it.

BigIronVault
01-01-2010, 01:08 PM
Hi fellow adventurers! We're very happy to have Ramah do this map for us. He's incredibly talented and very professional in his approach.

The map will be made available in colour on our website once our RPG has been released. It will also be in the book itself. The RPG will be released in time for GenCon 2010.

Eilathen
01-01-2010, 02:47 PM
I love the continent shape a lot. But i do think the mountain style clashes with the rest of the map's style. But then, that is a matter of taste.

@ BigIronVault - Can you tell us a bit more about the upcoming rpg? What system does it use? What kind of setting will it have? etc.

Locution
01-01-2010, 07:55 PM
Mind blowingly awesome! Like always Ramah.

BigIronVault
01-02-2010, 05:26 PM
Hi Eilathen, we have a fan page on facebook. If you search "bigironvault" you can find us there. We release a lot of "inside" information on "World of Lykarnia RPG" that is not available elsewhere. You can also visit our website www.bigironvault.com but that's mostly for company information.

If you were looking for a quick run down on the RPG we can summarize it like this:

- Fast paced but yet realistic resolution for feats, combat and skills
- We believe a good balance between class vs skill based characters: 9 occupations, modified by skills and paths which allow further modification
- Fate, Ideology and Principles play a major role in the RPG
- Combat is more tactical. ie. Different weapons are better at certain things such as dealing damage, penetrating armour
- Magic is powerful but dangerous with an excellent risk vs. reward mechanic
- In-depth character development vs. gear chasing
- Dark humour setting where people are shades of grey vs. traditional black/white morality
- Awesome art by El Garing, Ray Dillon and of course "Ramah"

After a few playtests (with more to come) we think its a fun experience with a rich and robust character system. Things move fast in the game and there's danger in every corner!

Enjoy every quiet minute - Lykarnia is a violent and brutal world with only your morals to guide you!

ravells
01-02-2010, 07:11 PM
Absolutely beautiful Ramah! You can almost reach out and touch the mountains. Are you going to do the forests in the same forced perspective as the mountains? That's going to be a challenge...can't wait to see the rest of this.

Ramah
01-03-2010, 07:32 PM
Thanks for all the comments.

In answer to Ravells' post I thought I'd post a quick snapshot to show what the forests are going to look like on this one. The forest isn't finalized and is still a WIP but I think I'm close to locking the style down.

19975

ravells
01-03-2010, 07:35 PM
Iron vault is very lucky to have you on the commission. That 'green theme' you've got going there looks like it's going to be a signature style. Love the forests too, they look really good with the mountain style. The relative scaling looks just about right.

This map so reminds me of the old Tolkien maps, but much better, IMO.

BigIronVault
01-03-2010, 08:10 PM
No kidding - Ramah has talent and is a great person to work with to boot!

Ascension
01-04-2010, 01:35 AM
Ah you make me sick :) I'll never be able to do a forest like that. Super sweet, bro, and rockin as always.

Steel General
01-04-2010, 03:25 PM
Most excellent trees...and the rest is pretty damn cool as well :)

Ramah
01-05-2010, 01:24 PM
I was having a play around with what I have so far on the map this afternoon and I came up with this which I think is a rather interesting departure for me, almost an inkwash effect. I quite like it.
What does everyone else think?

20016

Edit: Oh, and I know that the stroke on the river is too bold for this pastel type image, but that is in another PSD file and I was just messing around with the elements PSD.

ravells
01-05-2010, 04:25 PM
It's a very different feel from the old effect...it looks older and more mysterious to me. Equally beautiful, but it creates a different mood.

Locution
01-05-2010, 04:34 PM
Good Lord!

I have to stop looking at your work, it makes me feel so untalented. But I can't! I can't look away its so pretty...

*sigh* I may never come close to this kind of talent but I will certainly try. You are an inspiration Ramah! Thank you!

Ascension
01-05-2010, 05:12 PM
That's the way to go bro. Very nice and painterly, like a light wash watercolor. It has book cover or game cover written all over it.

Ramah
01-05-2010, 08:34 PM
Gah! Why can't I ever stick to what I say when I say I'll post less updates? :S

Anyway, I thought I'd post a full image of this new direction in which the map may be going. The stroke is still too bold on the rivers and land edge.

This image has had the levels raised a little since the snapshot I posted last to make it look less washed out. But of course it all can and will change.

20036

Tear
01-05-2010, 08:37 PM
You rock. Repped.

Locution
01-05-2010, 09:03 PM
:O

wow... just wow

NeonKnight
01-05-2010, 10:24 PM
Okay. I quit. I am in the presence of a true master and anything I make is but a pale shadow.

LonewandererD
01-05-2010, 11:21 PM
Ditto and repped

-D-

BigIronVault
01-05-2010, 11:29 PM
I'm really digging the alternate style myself. Fantastic. I cannot wait for it to be done!

This is not cartography based but we have other WIP interior art here by El Garing or interior artist. His job to turn some Lykarnian imagery into art!

http://www.bigironvault.com/SHLS.jpg

http://www.bigironvault.com/Mordana_s.jpg

http://www.bigironvault.com/SireHolgar_small.jpg

http://www.bigironvault.com/Skullcrusher_small.jpg

Diamond
01-06-2010, 01:30 AM
Good Lord!

I have to stop looking at your work, it makes me feel so untalented. But I can't! I can't look away its so pretty...

*sigh* I may never come close to this kind of talent but I will certainly try. You are an inspiration Ramah! Thank you!

Yeah. Pretty much...

ravells
01-06-2010, 05:24 AM
Truly stunning. Marvellous work.

Ramah
01-06-2010, 09:40 AM
Thanks all for the kind words.

I'm glad Keith at BIV is pleased with this new direction as it wasn't in the mandate. What was requested was a Vaniya/Aronbor style map so I'm pleased I'm getting the opportunity to mix it up a little, something which I probably wouldn't have done had I been continuing work on the Vaniya regionals.

BigIronVault
01-06-2010, 07:23 PM
This is one of the reasons why I like giving artists like yourself the freedom to do what they like (within reason) - you just never know what you might get!

Very happy Ramah. To be honest - unless you're busy I can see us having a long relationship out of this project. I'm planning adventure modules, supplements etc as well!

Ascension
01-06-2010, 11:58 PM
Ramah gonna get himself a gray name :)

Ramah
01-07-2010, 05:50 PM
Working on hilly areas.

20103

BigIronVault
01-18-2010, 08:44 PM
Anxiously waiting Ramah's next update! :)

Jaxilon
01-22-2010, 12:38 PM
I have to put my 2 cents in here as well. This is fantastic and gives me the feeling I had way back in Junior High when I started reading Tolkien and playing my first RPGs. A time before I had the stresses of paying bills and working to stay afloat. Looking at this I can almost smell the pages as I turn them to read about a world I never imagined.

Awesome job Ramah!

Thank you BigIronVault for allowing the WIP to be shared with the community.

Ascension
01-22-2010, 06:15 PM
That's a really nice compliment, Jax. And that's why Ramah is one of the best, his style transports you away from the everyday world that we live in and takes you to a magical place.

BigIronVault
01-23-2010, 07:08 PM
I have to put my 2 cents in here as well. This is fantastic and gives me the feeling I had way back in Junior High when I started reading Tolkien and playing my first RPGs. A time before I had the stresses of paying bills and working to stay afloat. Looking at this I can almost smell the pages as I turn them to read about a world I never imagined.

Awesome job Ramah!

Thank you BigIronVault for allowing the WIP to be shared with the community.

Absolutely, I wouldn't have it any other way. I just hope that the writing does this piece justice when it is all said and done.

Ramah
01-28-2010, 07:25 AM
Just a quick update to let you know that work is still ongoing on this project. This snapshot image was taken from the most recent update I sent to Keith and shows some of the coniferous forests I added as well as some light contour defining that you probably won't see. :)

Djekspek
01-28-2010, 07:40 AM
This is ... so gorgeous! please keep on working on this as it is going to be amazing. The depth effect is great and the use of color and shading is amazing! cheers

ravells
01-28-2010, 06:27 PM
Ohh Ramah, you've surpassed yourself; something I never thought possible. That is just simply gorgeous.

Gandwarf
01-28-2010, 06:55 PM
It certainly is amazing. Wow!

Ascension
01-28-2010, 10:23 PM
After all of these years and seeing all of the maps that I've seen and made, this one would be the first one that I'd want hanging on my wall.

Jaxilon
01-29-2010, 01:53 AM
After all of these years and seeing all of the maps that I've seen and made, this one would be the first one that I'd want hanging on my wall.

Good point Ascension, It would make a killer mural!

BigIronVault
01-31-2010, 06:19 PM
Funny that you guys are mentioning about hanging it on the wall. That's something Andy and I were discussing. I would like to release a "map" via our website as well as an electronic one with grids and no grids on it for the RPG.

Is this of interest to you folks?

Ramah
02-13-2010, 06:45 AM
One of the cities I've added in for the map...

The label is likely to change btw, although I'd quite like to know if it is readable from any of our guys who are affected by colour blindness. I know red on green is kind of a no-no, but it isn't a very dark green and it's kind of a dark red so I was wondering if it would still be visible to all?

Gandwarf
02-13-2010, 08:47 AM
Label is clear enough for me, but I am not colorblind.

Steel General
02-13-2010, 12:51 PM
I'm usually one of the first to 'squawk' when someone does red text on a green background.

But this isn't to bad, I'm not green/Red colorblind so I don't know how it would look to those that are.

arsheesh
02-13-2010, 03:18 PM
Wow! Now that's just beautiful Ramah! I am utterly impressed. Great job man, consider yourself repped.

Cheers,

-Arsheesh

Ramah
02-22-2010, 05:37 PM
I haven't had a lot of time to devote to this recently which is annoying as I'm pretty close to finishing it. Anyway, I'm back on the case now so should get it wrapped up soon. I was asked to give it about half a dozen sites of interest relevant to the RPG world and I'm almost done with adding them now. Here is one that I've just been working on. I quite like it but I think I need to look at it with some fresh eyes tomorrow and work on something else in the mean time. I give you: The Tower of Ineffable Damnation.

Ascension
02-22-2010, 08:27 PM
Kinda hard to spot, blends into the trees, needs something to make it stick out just a bit more...maybe a lighter color or some clouds or lightning or something. Unless it's meant to be subtle, then it's perfect :)

Elothan
02-22-2010, 08:31 PM
Wow... Have anybody seen my jaw ? I dropped it in this thread...:o

Repped ofc..

BigIronVault
02-22-2010, 11:49 PM
Kinda hard to spot, blends into the trees, needs something to make it stick out just a bit more...maybe a lighter color or some clouds or lightning or something. Unless it's meant to be subtle, then it's perfect :)

Hi Ascension - great idea with the clouds. It is however meant to be subtle as well. I want readers to look at it and say, "Hey that's not labelled. I wonder what that is."

Ascension
02-23-2010, 09:33 AM
Gotcha, it's perfect then. I'd expect nothing less from Ramah.

Ramah
02-23-2010, 02:44 PM
I was actually kinda worried I hadn't made it subtle enough. The original request was for a "tall, evil looking tower" but the tower I ended up drawing was quite plain looking. It needed the glow to give it some character but I wondered if it might be better to just drop the glow and go with more spikes and make it darker. It might be that I'll come back to this before it's done. We shall see.

Steel General
02-23-2010, 03:10 PM
I couldn't even tell it was a tower.

Ramah
02-23-2010, 03:24 PM
Hmm, well that's not good then.

moutarde
02-23-2010, 05:29 PM
Well, no matter what it looks like, a tall pointy object with a long pointy shadow is most likely a tower. I agree that the green glow makes it look evil. Green glows usually aren't very nice things ;)

BigIronVault
02-23-2010, 10:04 PM
Well, no matter what it looks like, a tall pointy object with a long pointy shadow is most likely a tower. I agree that the green glow makes it look evil. Green glows usually aren't very nice things ;)

Adventurer 1: "I know let's go to that tower with the greeny glow!"
Adventurer 2: "Erm that looks evil."
Adventurer 1: "Nah don't be a chicken, it's a tower located in a thick dense forest, overshadowed by a mountain range called the Blackshroud Mountains, the air is unnaturally cold and where no animals tread, how bad could it be?"

Ascension
02-24-2010, 02:03 AM
Sounds like there is some good loot to be had...count me in.

Steel General
02-24-2010, 11:58 AM
I looked at it again, and this time I had no problem telling what it was,...my eyes must be getting worse. :(

BigIronVault
03-22-2010, 08:51 PM
Hi has anyone seen/heard from Ramah lately?

Ascension
03-22-2010, 10:10 PM
He's having some family problems is all that we know...he popped in about 10 days ago and said as much.

BigIronVault
03-22-2010, 11:35 PM
I suspected it wasn't good. I've been sending him well wishes via email and hadn't got a reply - I thought the worse. :(

Ramah if you're out there checking in, do what you need to do - we'll chat when things are back under control. Cheers!

loogie
03-24-2010, 11:23 AM
I'm glad I put my friend here from Big Iron Vault in the right hands... Who else can you turn to for great fantasy maps but the Carto Guild? Ramah, your map is beautiful, and the detail is just amazing. I hope everything works out for you and you get back on track and posting your results soon!

Best wishes for you and your family.

BigIronVault
03-31-2010, 10:30 AM
Just talked to Ramah, he's doing okay and should be back to cartography in no time!

Legiazus
04-04-2010, 08:12 PM
I really like the retro-like style on this - plus, love the forests! Great looking-map.

Ramah
04-06-2010, 06:03 PM
Thank Legiazus.

Hopefully I will be able to post the finished version of this soon. As Ascension correctly stated above, I've had a lot of problems lately and my mapping time dropped to nothing. However, I'm back now and feeling particularly invigorated. I've missed a lot on the forum recently so I apologise for my absence and if you've posted a kick-ass map and I haven't commented on it then I probably haven't seen it. Looking forward to catching up on all that over the coming days.

Djekspek
04-06-2010, 07:12 PM
hehe, before catching up finish this awesome map first ;) It's gonne be an absolute stunner i'm sure! Good you're back... cheers!

BigIronVault
04-08-2010, 07:37 AM
I've seen some of the work that hasn't been posted here and I can say ... wow. Beyond my expectations thus far. I can't wait for it to all come together. Ramah has really brought my world to life and I'm grateful for all his efforts. Djekspek - it will be a stunner trust me!

If there's enough interest here, I'm willing to post a section from our new RPG (for free of course) that details each and every region of the world for personal use in your RPG campaigns.

Ramah
04-08-2010, 08:20 PM
Ok, I guess enough time has passed since my last update here to warrant another one. I'm really hoping to get this map done this weekend - I'm certainly on the home stretch with just a few more things to add and a few adjustments to be made. The last big(ish) task I've left myself was the farmlands and an area of the map called The Marches which is a clump of farming villages that stretches from the capital to outlying lands.
I thought I had a look pinned down a few nights ago but as I worked on it some more I began to realise that it was drawing the eye too much and was too colourful. I don't think I can avoid drawing the eye to this area actually, the fact that it requires enough villages to show that it is a dense farming area is unlike any other part of the map where cities are few and far between. In an effort to make the fields blend in more I decided to try taking colour away instead of adding it in order to achieve my goal. And here is the result.
It's not perfect and I plan to do more work on this area but I'm hoping this is the general look it will have in the end. Forget the labels btw, I'm still working on colours and positioning.



Any opinions on it?

Ascension
04-08-2010, 08:31 PM
I could never get that soft focus feel (like in film) that really adds the magic like this. Good stuff, bro.

Steel General
04-08-2010, 08:33 PM
Gotta agree, that's lookiin' mighty purty! :)

Diamond
04-08-2010, 10:51 PM
Ramah, this is just astounding, that's really I can say. As far as that section of farmland drawing the eye because its so densely populated by symbols/text/etc... is there a way to balance it by putting compass or a piece of artwork or something on the map opposite of where that farmland is (vertically, horizontally, or diagonally), to help balance it out visually?


If there's enough interest here, I'm willing to post a section from our new RPG (for free of course) that details each and every region of the world for personal use in your RPG campaigns.
I'd definitely be interested in seeing that.

Ramah
04-09-2010, 07:02 AM
As far as that section of farmland drawing the eye because its so densely populated by symbols/text/etc... is there a way to balance it by putting compass or a piece of artwork or something on the map opposite of where that farmland is (vertically, horizontally, or diagonally), to help balance it out visually?

Hmmm, something like that could indeed work except that piece of farmland is dead central to the map. :) I don't know if Keith plans on adding a compass or a cartouche or some artwork anyway. It wasn't part of the commission to do those extra bits (in fact, neither were the cities :) ) so I'm hoping that if BIV adds those things they'll get their internal illustrator to whip up something really cool looking. His work is amazing.
I don't think it's too much of a problem anyhoos.

BigIronVault
04-09-2010, 08:38 AM
@ Ramah --- Indeed - the cities were not part of the commission but let's just say that I've been thinking of ways to throw in a bonus!

@ everyone --- does anyone have an idea on how I can share this map electronically to people that have purchased a copy of the game? It is cost prohibitive for us to have a map insert in our books at this time.

Raskat
04-09-2010, 08:57 AM
@ everyone --- does anyone have an idea on how I can share this map electronically to people that have purchased a copy of the game? It is cost prohibitive for us to have a map insert in our books at this time.

Maybe is not extremely professional, but what about dropbox (http://www.dropbox.com)?

But if there are many customers I wouldn't advice that. The only true advantage is that none apart from the customers you've chosen would be able to access the file, because you will have to select them one by one. And to get access to the file your customers will have to create a dropbox account. Well, I'm sure someone else will end up with something better than this ^^.

Ascension
04-09-2010, 05:29 PM
You would probably need some sort of code thing like video games use when registering. One code = one map. Put the code on a sticker then put that on the game and then they can go to the website and put in their code and get a nice map that they can print themselves.

Ramah
04-12-2010, 07:49 PM
This will be the last update before the final image is posted in the finished maps section. Tomorrow. :)
I wasn't planning on posting another update but as the map now won't be finished until tomorrow I decided to post one more image showing what I've been working on tonight.

This image shows the city of Hamerfall, a not very nice city in the snowy wastes of Hammerlund.

Not a lot to do to the map now at all. I plan to add a few small forest areas dotted around the map for a little flavour and a cartouche. Other than that, cocked, locked and ready to rock. :)

Seeya tomorrow.

Ramah
04-13-2010, 08:15 PM
Final version (hopefully) up in this thread: http://www.cartographersguild.com/showthread.php?9985-Lykarnia in the finished maps forum.