View Full Version : First gimp-made map - "Ankae : the southern kingdoms - "

02-03-2010, 10:14 AM
Hello, this is my first digital map made with the gimp, following Roba's tutorial. It's the reproduction of a hand drawn map, and it still need some works .
This region is a kind of Mediterranean one, with early medieval civilisations in the North, and more Byzantine or persian ones in the south.

every comments and advices are welcome...

02-03-2010, 10:42 AM
All in all, a worthy effort. You can see the RobA tutorial influence, but with a good dose of your own style. The main weakness, IMO, is the mountains (also the most difficult part to get right, also IMHO). The first issue I notice with your mountains is that their color is the exact same as the background color of the map layers below the bumpmap. I think I know why you did that (with some of the mountains overlapping into desert regions, and the like), but they might look better if there was some sort of mountain-color layer with a gradient that fades out into the surrounding landscape towards the edge.

02-03-2010, 11:39 AM
Thanks for the advice, i will try to follow it. I will also try to make the mountains look higher, with more pikes. And I've just found out that i forgot one kingdom in the legend ...:x

02-03-2010, 12:41 PM
Now that you've got this style down I'd have a look through the tutorials for all the other mountain threads. There's quite a few... It's definitely worth doing and you've clearly got RobA's tutorial more or less worked out with this example. Good work, and welcome.

02-03-2010, 12:56 PM
It's looking good, but I Karro is right about the mountains, they look like they're floating over the land. Have a look at the post in my sig about mountain boundries which may (or may not!) be of help. It also seems to me that you've got an effect where the land is standing proud of the sea, probably because of the perspective cloud effect and the fact that it's apparent that the cloud effect continues behind the landmass and comes out of the other side...another sea texture maybe?

Great work so far though!

02-03-2010, 01:11 PM
Great work so far Riffman. What I liked most about this map was the shape of the land masses, and their position within the overall composition of the map-very attractive. Aside from the mountains the only slight infelicity (in my opinion) was the font used to designate your territories and civilizations. It seems to me that this font is a bit block-like, and just slight bit unclear. With so many great fonts out there to choose from I would recommend reconsidering the current choice. However this may just turn out to be a difference in taste, so if others feel differently about this matter they should speak up about it. Otherwise I liked your map, and I'll be keeping an eye on it as it progresses. By the way, here's a good link if your interested in checking out alternative fonts:




Steel General
02-03-2010, 02:03 PM
Great start...looking forward to the finished product.

02-03-2010, 02:12 PM
I think putting a soft hillshade over the prevailing local coloration would be an effective way of showing hills as opposed to mountains. For that, I would go with a somewhat less pronounced and shiny lighting effect. The billowy rounded shape of your(riffman's) noise is perfect for suggesting hills IMHO. For higher mountains, I'd alter the background color to suggest a treeline and possibly alpine glaciation. I'd use a much more ridged or "peaky(?)" noise for the hillshade on mountains. If you're not too concerned with creating an HF(my Achilles Heel), you could paint in shading to better represent the high ridgelines of mountain ranges. I think the amount and shininess of your current shading would be about right for true mountains.

02-04-2010, 03:11 AM
Thanks for the compliments and the advices ! I'll send you the next version when it's ready...

02-07-2010, 05:39 PM
Here's a ne version of Ankae : i have worked on the mountains, give more texture to the lowlands, and change the fonts...there is still some things to work on (i will try other fonts and an other sea texure), but it start looking like i wanted it to be...

02-07-2010, 05:59 PM
Looks better than the first version. The text labels could use some antialiasing though.

02-07-2010, 06:34 PM
I like the colors, the dark forests go well with the ocean. I like the waves around that big island, too. Overall, very stylish.

02-08-2010, 12:20 AM
Looking pretty good there Riffman. I agree with Ascension about the colors you've chosen, they go quite nicely together.



02-08-2010, 02:00 PM
Looking good, but with the addition of more bumpiness to your lowlands area, the mountains have lost some of their noticeable texture. As a possible solution, I might double the texture on the mountain bump area only. Or try overlaying multiple bump textures on the mountain area (a technique I've worked on, myself, in part to combat the problem of straight lines that appear in GIMP's native noise generator).

03-31-2010, 09:51 AM
I know it has taken a long time, but there's two new version of Ankae...same map, with other style...thanks a lot to ramah (for the brushes) and for all the tutorials writer... All comments and advice are welcomed...

Steel General
03-31-2010, 04:33 PM
This is quite nice, you might consider 'toning down' the overlaying pattern - it makes some of the text a bit difficult to read.

04-01-2010, 12:00 AM
Hey, those are something special, especially the one on the left. I do agree with SG though; the overlaying canvas/weave pattern could be a little lighter.

04-01-2010, 02:36 AM
looking good, the contour lines in the water are a bit strong, especially in the colored map where the ocean is overpowering the landmass, but good job and nice to see you trying out different styles :)

04-22-2010, 04:48 AM
Here is my new version of ankae. I mix elements of the olders version (groud textures and colors from the "sat style", labels and mountains from the "hand-draw"...), and i like the result. I'll add some legends and decorations, and maybe a bit of text about the history and the peoples of Ankae, and it will be almost finished...Any advices?

07-03-2010, 08:09 AM
It's been a long time since i haven't update my work...so here's the new version of Ankae's Kingdoms...IMHO, the definitive one...

07-03-2010, 10:32 AM
Very nice work :) how could I have missed seeing a good map like this? Have some long overdue rep.


07-03-2010, 11:37 AM
Gorgeous! Hard to believe that that one began with RobA's tutorial. There is one tiny error, though. There are two mountains lit from the wrong side:

Great job!

07-03-2010, 12:22 PM
Thanks for the rep...and for pointing the "reversed" mountains... i'm afraid that there is some other ones in that case...i'll take a look. I'm currently working on some text, to give Ankae a bit of history...

07-05-2010, 02:58 AM
nice... a lot of changes your would has gone through ... good job :)

07-07-2010, 03:52 AM
Ok, the mountains have been corrected...
I'll post a introduction text as soon as i can... i have some parts of the background, but there is still much work to do... i have a lot of ideas, organised in a "mind map" with Freemind (a software i really suggest you, it's a great help when you need to write down ideas and organise it), but the harder part is the redaction...and the translation.

09-02-2010, 08:09 AM
It's almost two months since i've told you about an introduction to Ankae... so it's time to give a try.

If there is a fact about all Ankaians religions and mythologies agreed, it's that this world is not the palce where mandkind was born... Almost every people have a different version of the coming of the mens, but there is some common points : Mandkind use to have great powers, a long, long, long time ago, and some catastrophic conflict have almost destroy it, leaving only few tribes, and some artifacts and ruins...

These tribes, adapting themselves to their new world, had grown up, and became people, founded kingdoms, cities and civilisations.

The part of this world (maybe one day i'll find a fitting name) shown on this map is the region of Ankae ("the land of the channel" in some old and forgotten language). Bordered at the South by the desert of Giraz, at the West by the great Athalean forest, at the North by the Sfarberg and Joenbarga Mountains, and at the East by the Cyncaern river, Ankae lay over three continents : Joron in the NE, Merin in the S, and, linked to it by a small isthmus, Athalea.

By their situation at the jonction between two continents and two oceans, the lands of Ankae are on importants trading routes coming from beyond the deserts and going to the northern and eastern kingdoms. With the exception of the desert of the Dix-milles, Ankae benefits of a favorable weather, and of some natural and geological ressources. This facts had made of Ankae's kingdoms some of the wealthiest and the most developped civilisation in the world, and tends to attract nomad raiders or people in search of a better land to settle.

The northern and Eastern coast of the Ahmanique ocean are populated by the Altenes, who colonised the from their homelands at the piemont of the Algar Mountains. They use to rule over Joron until the appearence of the Aengsens tribes, and now have only two independant states of their own : the Principality of Carnese, former heart of their empire and presently engaged in a violent succession conflict, and the Kingdom of Altrameria which ruled over the East of Merin, born from former colonies at the disparition of the empire.

The Aengsens have come to Joron eigth centuries ago, coming from the North by the valley of the Wautanfell river. Divided in hundreds of tribes, they progress slowly, taking one land after the other, absorbing the former inhabitants, and creating a mosaic if small tribal kingdom. After two centuries, They have throw the altenes out of the val d'esbar and of the western end of Joron.
They have known their apogée when Wolgrid, king of the Haed, united the Aengsens tribes and lead them against the remains of the altene's empire. After the seizure of Carnes, he proclaimed himself emperor of Joron. His empire was divided between his sons, and was shaked by internal conflict, until the sudden Kaels invasion broke it into piece, as Wolgrid broke the altene empire...The remains of that empire are the Kingdoms of Weslande (still ruled by the Wolgrid House), The Kingdom of Norfang and the League of Sverig, an alliance between the small principalities and City-states around the Openmar bay

The last people in Joron, the Kaels, where a people of nomads riders from the eastern plains of Ardhoman. The Eastlands of Joron had often been the goal of their raid, until two hundred years ago, when a huge group of tribe, les by the Maeron clan, start a large-scale conquest, seizing the lands between the Cyncaern and the Melind forest. They are no more nomads, but still tends to launch raid and to practice piracy, between their clans or against the other kingdoms.

An other people of inmigrant, the Ascaliens, had settle down in Ankae : fleeing from a war far in the North, they came sailing along the coast and settle down in the Myriade archipelago, and in the estuary of the Skamlinn river. Sailors and traders, they found several city-state led by commercial guilds. It lead to the creation of a complex confederation system, uniting the city and balacing the power of the guild, The Archipelan Alliance . Since the foudation of the alliance, the ascalians have colonised the East of Athalea, And have expanded their territory, conquering, buying, or co-opting islands or port, and integrating them in the Alliance. thay are know a major power, and the first commercial power.

In the East, Athalea is populated by hunter-picker tribes, many of them under the Archipelan domination. Retrench in the forest and beyond the omnutains of the Pont-Rocheux, the Kahenopee and Aweghanis tribes stil resists to the invasion.

Merin is populated by three group of people :

The Akkanis, in the north, Have been united by the legendary Naxos, who expelled the Altenes from Miraman, and fouded the city of Naxopolis. the Naxopolitan Empire is still existing, and even if he has lost a good part of his power, is still something ti count with.

Between the Tenens mountains and the hills of Goanda lives the Medissas, nomad stockbreeders. They wher a long time under the hodgevi and altene domination, but the fall of both empires made them free again. During the Smuggler Wars between the new Hodgevi empire, the kingdom of altrameria and the archipelan city of Albia, they Were united by Arkaon, a half-medissa mercenary, who lead them to the victory, and to the conquest of the Altenes colonies of Sueracosta and Artenese.

The Dix-Milles and the basin of the Ge'het are populated by the Gehettims peoples, divided in two groups : The Qesserims and the Hodgevis.

The Qesserims have fleed the lands of the Gehet under the religious persecution of the first hogevi empire, and have find a refuge in the Dix-Milles. Organised in a confederacy of twelve tribe, they rule over the desert and keep the trading roads.

The Hodgevi, named after their prophet and first emperor, Hodgev, rule over the Ge'het basin. their society is based on their religious system and on a complex cast system. After the fall of their first empire five centuries ago, they hace known centuries of chaos and of division, until Algerv, the king of Airan, and Nadgar, Great Patriarch of the Hodgevi church, allied and restore the Empire, sharing the power between them. Since the reunification, the hodgevis show a strong tendancy to expansionnism, and wich to reconquer the lands of their former empires.

Ok....i wanted to make it short, but i think it's missed. Sorry for the errors, and if you see one, don't hesitate to correct it... every comments and advices are welcome.

09-02-2010, 02:46 PM
Nice background lore. I'm really enjoying the work you've put into this.