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Thread: [CC3/DD3] Making Dungeon Maps in the Style of Ruins of Undermountain I and II

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      jaerdaph is offline
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    Wip [CC3/DD3] Making Dungeon Maps in the Style of Ruins of Undermountain I and II

    Over the course of fantasy RPG history we have seen the published dungeon map evolve from simple black and white (or blue and white) graph paper style maps to more modern renderings that border on the photorealistic. Somewhere beween the old school and the new came a golden age of dungeon maps (at least in my opinion) that can be seen in the old 2e AD&D Forgotten Realms boxed sets, Ruins of Undermountain and Ruins of Undermountain II. I have always loved those Undermountain maps, not only for their shear size and scope, but their use of colors and symbols in new (for the time) yet familiar ways. They emanate complexity in their simplicity.

    In this WIP thread I am going to document my progress in creating techniques for reproducing dungeon maps with Campaign Cartographer 3 (CC3) and the Dungeon Designer 3 (DD3) add-on that mimic the style of the maps found in the Ruins of Undermountain I and II boxed sets (UM1 and UM2 from this point on). I will share what I learn along the way in case anyone wants to use CC3/DD3 to do the same.

    Here is a sample of a section of a UM1 map:



    And here is a sample section of a UM2 map:



    I have already started to run into some technical difficulties, particularly with the ways grids work in CC3 and trying to get them to work with these maps. I look forward to crossing that bridge when I get to (with fingers crossed that Elminster won't pull a Gandalf and proclaim "you shall not pass!").

    Stay tuned for more....
    jaerdaph
    JUST ADD HEROES An ICONS Superpowered Roleplaying Game Blog by Joe "jaerdaph" Bardales

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    FYI: The sample of a UM1 map is actually from this product that uses the same style:



    Also, I'd like to dedicate this thread to the TSR cartographers who designed the original UM1 and UM2 maps: Diesel, Steve Beck, David Sutherland (Rest in peace, great sir), and Dennis Kauth. Thank you all for sparking my imagination and giving me hours of enjoyment.
    jaerdaph
    JUST ADD HEROES An ICONS Superpowered Roleplaying Game Blog by Joe "jaerdaph" Bardales

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      jaerdaph is offline
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    First things first (as in the first of the Five Principles of Map Design).

    I have chosen an existing dungeon to work from to use for this project. This map is by John "Gozzy" Gosland and can be found on his Web site here:

    Dungeon Complex - Level 1

    Dungeon Complex - Level 2

    I intend, however, to add some caverns of my own design to these.
    jaerdaph
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      jaerdaph is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by jaerdaph View Post
    I have already started to run into some technical difficulties, particularly with the ways grids work in CC3 and trying to get them to work with these maps. I look forward to crossing that bridge when I get to (with fingers crossed that Elminster won't pull a Gandalf and proclaim "you shall not pass!").
    Over the Thanksgiving holiday, I played around with various options for overcoming this obstacle. If I were to use a grid that covered the entire area of the map (using Draw -> Hex or Square Overlay...) and that grid was in a color other than black, the grid would show up on top of the black background of a UM1 map because of the way sheets work in CC3 (because the GRID sheet sits on top of the BACKGROUND sheet in this case). The same is true if I use the tile background for UM2 style maps. So instead of using a grid that covers the entire map, I will be using a combination of copies of multipolys on different sheets and in different colors and different fill styles (like Solid and Square Grid 10') to accomplish the task.

    But more on this when I get there.
    jaerdaph
    JUST ADD HEROES An ICONS Superpowered Roleplaying Game Blog by Joe "jaerdaph" Bardales

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    STARTING MY MAP

    I'm going to use the first level of the dungeon map I've selected and re-create it in the style found in UM1.

    Scale
    Although I'm a big d20 fan where one square equals five feet, I've decided to stick to the old school and use a map scale of one square equals ten feet.

    Template
    Based on the original map and the scale I've chosen, I determined that I needed to create a template 525 feet wide and 390 feet high to accomodate that map. I did this using the New Drawing Wizard selecting Decide settings myself, Map Type: dungeons, Map Style: DD Pro dungeon, entered my width and height, and chose a solid black fill style and NO grid overlay, then saved the newly created FCW file map with a name.

    Once the template was created, I went into File -> Drawing Properties to change the symbol scale to 1.0 (and leave default symbol scale box checked). This is because of a small bug in the wizard template for DD Pro maps in CC3 that messes up the default symbol size by setting the value too small. You may need to save and close the map then open it again before you select and place symbols so they will scale at 1.0 by default.

    Symbol Catalog
    The best existing symbol catalog that comes with CC3/DD3 for use in these maps is simple.FSC catalog of simple dungeon symbols which have a varicolor component that changes the background fill color leaving the basic outline of the symbol drawing in black. It can be found at the following file path with a default CC3/DD3 installation:

    C:\Program Files\Profantasy\CC3\Symbols\Dungeons\Filled\simpl e.FSC

    NEXT UP: Choosing Colors

    Edit: fixed file path
    Last edited by jaerdaph; 11-29-2007 at 08:48 AM. Reason: Edit: Fixed post formatting
    jaerdaph
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      NeonKnight is offline
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    Here is a solution to your question about how to make the Grid.

    I usually make a copy of all the walls to my Grid layer/Sheet. Change their thickness to 0, eliminate all extraneous extras, and then make it one big polygon with the grid fill style.
    Daniel the Neon Knight: Campaign Cartographer User

    Never use a big word when a diminutive one will suffice!

    Any questions on CC3? Post them with CC3 in the Subject Line!
    MY 'FAMOUS' CC3 MAPS: Thunderspire; Pyramid of Shadows; King of the Trollhaunt Warrens; Demon Queen's Enclave

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      jaerdaph is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by NeonKnight View Post
    I usually make a copy of all the walls to my Grid layer/Sheet. Change their thickness to 0, eliminate all extraneous extras, and then make it one big polygon with the grid fill style.
    Thanks! I'm doing something very similar. Basically, I create a color floor from paths, arcs and fractal paths on the Floor sheet/Background (Floor 1) layer, make a copy of the fractal paths on another layer (SECRET) which I then freeze and hide, multipoly the paths/arcs/fractal paths to a single solid poly, copy that to the grid sheet and layer, and change the color and the fill style (to a square grid) of the copy. For the walls, I draw those over those over the floor layer on the Walls sheet and layer as width 0 black paths and arcs and move the copy of the hidden fractal paths there as well. I explode all those items to lines, convert all the lines to paths, then do a combine paths to get seamless walls when I change the line width something thicker.

    But based on your suggestion, I may just copy all the original floor paths, arcs and fractal paths to the layer I hide and freeze before the multipoly for use with the walls later to save a few drawing steps.

    That was probably really confusing to anyone who hasn't played with CC3 under the hood too much, so I'll write up a better step by step for this process later when I get there.
    Last edited by jaerdaph; 11-29-2007 at 12:02 AM.
    jaerdaph
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    CHOOSING COLORS

    For now I will be using CC3's default 256 color palette. The color scheme I have chosen is a close aproximation of the colors on a UM1 map. Later on I hope to get a really good scan of one of my UM1 maps and extract the exact colors from it, then create a custom palette in CC3 with this info.

    Here are the colors I am using followed by the CC3 palette number and any notes as to what they will be used for:

    Black 0 (walls, symbols)
    White 15 (symbols)
    Red 2 (directional arrows up & down)
    Pale Yellow 140 (dungeon floor)
    Pale Orange 152 (core room)
    Yellow 4 (area of interest)
    Green 1 (teleport area)
    Medium Blue 74 (water)
    Gray 18 (elevated area, Skullport style building)
    Dark Gray 14 (square grid lines)
    jaerdaph
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      ravells is offline
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    I really like the way that you're approaching this project. A lesson to us all on organised planning!

    (A quality I'm sadly lacking in!)

    Ravs

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