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Scarecrow84
04-12-2010, 07:04 PM
Hey guys,

Im new to these forums, and new to mapping in general. Im having a hard time determining which software program out of CC3 with the DD3 addon or Dundjinni is the most ideal for use in making Dungeon battlemaps, and the odd outdoor battlemap. I have no interest in making world maps and the like, its only dungeons and the outdoor battle/encounter maps that i need.

I have had a brief play around with each, and whilst MapTool is free and can easily do maps, they are really poor in quality, and very limited (cant even do curved rooms that i have found). Im happy enough to put in a bit of work to learn how to use either Dundjinni or CC3, and i have done the CC3/DD3 Tutorials on YouTube by Joe Sweeny, which were fantastic.

I have currently been using maps which i have scavenged from the net, and import them into MapTool to use with my players locally.

So thats where im at. Which program would be best to suit my needs of making dungeon & outdoor battle/encounter maps, and then importing them into MapTool to use?

NeonKnight
04-12-2010, 07:47 PM
Depends really on your personally tastes. DUnjinni tends to be more photo realistic, while CC3 has a reputation for being 'Cartoony'. CC3 can use all the images from Dunjinni though. The links in my signature are for battlemats that were all done in CC3.

Scarecrow84
04-12-2010, 11:49 PM
Thanks for your quick response. I was already leaning towards CC3/DD3, so this has pretty much made up my mind.

How easy is it to get new symbols into CC3, as i had downloaded a huge amout for use in MapTool? Also ive been reading about this thing called CSUAC that i should download for use in CC3, but i cannot find it anywhere on the net.

As pretty much a complete noob to dungeon design and CCS/DD3, what do you recommend that i need to get for it in terms of extra symbols, and the like?

Mark Oliva
04-13-2010, 01:31 AM
CC3 can use all the images from Dunjinni though.

That's not quite true. The original Dundjinni symbols and those in the commercial art packs are encrypted and may not be used in other programs. However, the user-made symbols available for free download on the Dundjinni forums will work with other programs.


How easy is it to get new symbols into CC3?

It's easy to get them there, but after you have them, they need to be converted into the multi-resolution files that CC3 uses. If you don't convert, the foreign symbols will not scale correctly. It's been well over a year since I dropped CC3, so I can't tell you how to make those conversions anymore. I've forgotten. But some other guild member may be able to help you there. Or you can E-Mail Ralf Schemmann at:

mailto:ralf@profantasy.com


Also ive been reading about this thing called CSUAC that i should download for use in CC3, but i cannot find it anywhere on the net.

The CSUAC was a compilation of old symbols made by Dundjinni users and posted on the Dundjinni forums. It was available in separate, ready-to-use versions for Dundjinni, Fractal Mapper 8 and CC3. However, the page no longer is available. Owner Cecil Solomon hadn't updated it since 2008, and I suspect that he simply quit, although I hope that's not the case. The address was:

http://www.gmsapprentice.com

However, the address is dead at present.

The good news is, you can download all of these symbols and many more free from the Dundjinni forum at:

http://www.dundjinni.com/forums/forum_topics.asp?FID=8

The best starting point is the entry "Monthly Archive by Sendorian."

The bad news is, if you decide for CC3, you'll have to convert the symbbols you download from this and other sites if you want them to scale correctly in CC3. That's not a problem with Dundjinni or Fractal Mapper 8.


As pretty much a complete noob to dungeon design and CCS/DD3, what do you recommend that i need to get for it in terms of extra symbols, and the like?

Start with the Dundjinni user collection mentioned above.

You'll find great free download collections of symbols too at RPG Map Share from Jeff Albers and Greytale's Nook from Greg Taylor too. You'll find these at:

http://www.rpgmapshare.com/

and

http://greytale.com/joomla/index.php?option=com_zoom&Itemid=32

If you want symbols of buildings for cities and villages, you can get them free from our site at:

http://www.vintyri.org/vintyri/vccindex.htm

For all these symbols, conversions also are necessary for CC3, if you want them to scale properly. However, before you pick any program, I would strongly suggest that you also consider Fractal Mapper 8 from NBOS Software. I think that FM8 will do a great job of everything you want to do. The learning curve is about the same as that for Dundjinni and about 10% of that demanded by CC3. In addition, the end costs probably will be lower for FM8 and Dundjinni than for CC3, because you don't have to buy expensive add-ons like DD3 and CD3.

http://www.nbos.com/

You can download the free trial version of FM8 at:

http://www.nbos.com/nox/index.php?action=1001&id=144

The trial version is identical to the full version with two exceptions: You can't save files and the trial version comes with only a small trial symbol library. However, the third party symbols mentioned above all work with FM8 in the full and trial versions. After downloading the trial version, also get the free 160-page PDF manual and tutorial at:

http://www.nbos.com/nox/index.php?action=1001&id=125

If you're still interested in FM8 after going through that, get our follow-up free FM8 raster mapping tutorial at:

http://www.vintyri.com/vintyri/tu1.htm

At that point, your FM8 investment still will be zero. You can evaluate every aspect of he product before deciding whether to buy.

For the record, I used CC DOS, CC2, CC2 Pro and CC3 for many years. At present I use both Fractal Mapper 8 and Dundjinni.

Good luck and good mapping,

Scarecrow84
04-13-2010, 03:30 AM
Thanks for all the info, i hadnt considered FM8. It looks ok, and seems like it would be easy to use. Can you get similar effects with FM8 as u can in CC3, like for instance, looking at the screenshots of some of the maps on the FM8 website, they look very cartoonish, and very flat, whereas if you look at some of the maps in NeonKnights sig, they are more vibrant, lots of shadows and effects, and looks more appealing.

It could just be my tastes, or that the example maps they give on the FM8 website are not that great, but based on what i have seen, the CC3 maps look better to me. In saying that however, i would certainly enjoy not having to worry about converting symbols over if i could avoid it, and just import them straight in to Dundjinni or FM8, so i am at a bit of a loss.

Can FM8 produce the same quality maps as CC3? Could you point me to any dungeon type maps on this forum that were made by FM8, so i could get a better idea?

Thanks again

Mark Oliva
04-13-2010, 12:10 PM
Can you get similar effects with FM8 as u can in CC3

Any result I could get in CC3 I also can get in FM8.


like for instance, looking at the screenshots of some of the maps on the FM8 website, they look very cartoonish, and very flat, whereas if you look at some of the maps in NeonKnights sig, they are more vibrant, lots of shadows and effects, and looks more appealing.

The maps on the NBOS site aren't very good quality. Most weren't even produced with FM8 but rather with FM7. I had FM7 but didn't use it because it fell far short of doing what I wanted to have and far short of what CC2 Pro was giving me at that time. However, FM8 is an entirely different story.


It could just be my tastes, or that the example maps they give on the FM8 website are not that great, but based on what i have seen, the CC3 maps look better to me. In saying that however, i would certainly enjoy not having to worry about converting symbols over if i could avoid it, and just import them straight in to Dundjinni or FM8, so i am at a bit of a loss.

The CC3 maps posted on the guild site by users certainly are better than the sample maps on the NBOS site.


Can FM8 produce the same quality maps as CC3? Could you point me to any dungeon type maps on this forum that were made by FM8, so i could get a better idea?

I'd suggest that you download the free, 222 page FM8 PDF tutorial that we produced. You can get it at:

http://www.vintyri.com/vintyri/tu1.htm

This tutorial is loaded with practical illustrations of what FM8 can do (as well as step for step instructions on how to do it yourself). If you look at the Vintyri tutorial, I think it will give you a good picture of whether FM8 can do what you want to do. And it doesn't cost anything.

Again, good luck and good mapping!

Scarecrow84
04-13-2010, 07:20 PM
Thanks again for the info. I do like that FM8 is a lot cheaper and potentially easier to use, but i must admit i much prefer the appearance of the CC3 maps, as they appear to much better match the art of D&D 4th Ed, which is the main game that i run.

Mark Oliva
04-14-2010, 12:04 AM
Thanks again for the info. I do like that FM8 is a lot cheaper and potentially easier to use, but i must admit i much prefer the appearance of the CC3 maps, as they appear to much better match the art of D&D 4th Ed, which is the main game that i run.

??? That's a question of how you make the maps, not of the software program. Just about any map you can make with CC3 you also can make with FM8, and. likewise, just about any map you can make with FM8 you also can make with CC3.

Scarecrow84
04-16-2010, 08:01 PM
Mark, I have FM8 a shot on my home computer, did the tutorials with the trial version. Its pretty good, but there just doesnt seem to be the flexibility with it compared to CC3, particularly when it comes to effects and stuff.

On another note, its not necessarily anything to do with FM8 persay, but i couldnt for the life of me figure out how to put a pit in the floor, with say acid in it. The best i could scramble up was putting down some floor tiles, then in a 3x3 grid, put down the "acid" texture, and select it and make it have a frame bevel. It semi looked like it was a depression in the floor, but it really wasnt that good.

Also i couldnt find an erase function. Say i made a wall that was 10 squares long, but then i decided that i wanted to erase 2 of those squares in the middle of the wall, i couldnt do it, id have to delete the whole wall, and then redo it.

Mark Oliva
04-17-2010, 12:44 AM
I hope you're not misunderstanding me. If you prefer CC3 to FM8, I have no problem with that. I can't recall any effect in CC3 that I can't get in FM8, but then again, I dumped CC3 more than a year ago, so I well could be forgetting something. If I had to put a pit in the floor with acid in it, I'd just drop a good symbol (object) of an acid pit into the map rather than taking the time to make one myself. I'd do that with either FM8 or CC3. With the wall, there are several options that you can use in both programs to reach your goal. But you have a learning curve to go through first, big in CC3, small in FM8.

Scarecrow84
04-17-2010, 02:55 AM
Touche about the acid pit.

So where would i find objects like that to place into the map?

Mark Oliva
04-18-2010, 01:09 AM
So where would i find objects like that to place into the map?

Go back to my first posting above. Go on a symbol mining expedition using the links I posted. I would start with the Dundjinni forums. There is a huge selection of pit objects on the various forums. RPG Map Share and Greytale's Nook also are good sources.

Most people who offer objects on these sites allow free private and commercial use, but redistribution of the objects themselves is not allowed. For that reason, you'll have to do your own mining.