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Thread: Modulable Dungeon Project - WIP.

  1. #1
      Simon33600 is offline
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    Default Modulable Dungeon Project - WIP.

    Hello guys.

    First of all a bit of explanation on my newest project (it was on the back of my head for a while, but kept getting delayed by other projects).

    I have done a small number of battlemaps by now, but these have a problem: they are a bit static. The layout can't change from one to the others and that limits their usefulness, re-usefulness...

    On the other hand, I really like the idea of the dungeon tiles such as the ones WOC puts out from time to time... These are nice and pretty and can be re-arranged and combined in a number of way. The problem I found when tryting to used them is that they are so damn small. Any scenaries big enough to accomodate a parties takes five good minutes to put in place, slowing the game considerably. I always end up simply drawing the area on a erasable battlemat.


    At this point, I wanted to try to combine the two approaches: several big maps, that takes seconds to set down and can host a handful of encounters but in the same style so that they can be re-arranged and re-used by the DM to suit his own dungeon plan (as best as possible, these are still not as modulable than dungeon tiles). Ideally, would-be DM could print the maps and use them to construct their own dungeons...


    Here is what I came up so far:


    Modulable Dungeon Project - WIP.-modulable-dungeon-dead-end-small-room.png


    Modulable Dungeon Project - WIP.-modulable-dungeon-dead-end-unfinished.png


    Modulable Dungeon Project - WIP.-modulable-dungeon-embranchment.png


    Modulable Dungeon Project - WIP.-modulable-dungeon-medium-tomb-area.png


    Modulable Dungeon Project - WIP.-modulable-dungeon-royal-tomb.png


    Modulable Dungeon Project - WIP.-modulable-dungeon-small-tomb-area.png


    Modulable Dungeon Project - WIP.-modulable-dungeon-stairs-entrance-room.png


    Now; I feel guilty because it's all look so bland, simple and basic. But that's part of the point. If I put dungeon dressing, the rooms will lose their genericity...
    Well, to be more exact, I plan to dress at least some of these (using, as usual, the most exellent furnitures from the Dundjinni forums), hopefully to serve different functions but I will always also post the naked version so that interested people can repurpose it for their own dungeons...

    You might also noticed from the names of the files the biggest of these are designed as "tombs". It is because my next project will be to redesign the "Tomb of Queen Peregrine" from "Fane of the Drow" (I already rewrote it as a 5th Level Pathfinder adventure). The adventure is nice but I found the last map to be very lackluster (it was probably designed firstly as a location for their mini game and don't really work, I feel, for a RPG).

    Now, I am also planning on adding several more rooms. For example, a simple stair that leads to a corridor, without a room in-between. A couple of simple corridors, T and Y intersections and a small circular room. Presumably a room that meet a natural cavern (a bit like the unfinished corridor) but the natural cavern continues on...
    As far as bigger rooms are concerned, I'd like to make a fortified entry, with arrow slits on both sides. A small amphiteater/arena and a bridge over a chasm...

    Presumably; more ideas will pop-up and I'd like to continue this thread and this project over a long run, slowly adding more maps.
    As always; comments and critics are activelly seeked for. Suggestions for rooms are too...
    Last edited by Simon33600; 07-13-2013 at 06:48 AM.

  2. #2
      Neyjour is offline
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    Very nice project Simon! I really like the interesting shapes and layouts you've got for some of the larger ones. They do look very plain, but offering a completely bare/unpopulated version will make them much more useful and versatile, for those who don't mind taking the time to add their own elements.

    I like the texture you've chosen for the floor.

    My only suggestions would be to maybe try a less "busy" texture for the walls. And I think a bevel effect on the walls would also make them look a lot better. As they are right now, they look a bit flat. A bevel effect would give them some height and depth, making them look a bit more...wall-like.

    Good job so far!

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      Neyjour is offline
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    Here's a couple quick wall examples.

    EDIT: The shadowing from the bevel makes them appear thinner than they actually are. If you think they look too thin, just increase the width a little to compensate. They're 31 pix right now, so maybe try 40 pix instead. Also, if you don't want the walls to cut into the playable floor area, move them further out, so the inner edge of the wall touches the outer edge of the tile. That way the only overlap you'll get is from the drop shadow. That would only work for the outer walls, though. For the inner ones you'd have to do some redesigning, where they'd run down the center of the squares, making those squares non-payable. You'd loose some playable space, so...you'd just have to decide if it looks nice/better enough to sacrifice that extra space.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Modulable Dungeon Project - WIP.-modulable-dungeon-stairs-entrance-room-wall-example-01-.png   Modulable Dungeon Project - WIP.-modulable-dungeon-stairs-entrance-room-wall-example-02-.png  
    Last edited by Neyjour; 07-18-2013 at 11:24 PM.

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      Neyjour is offline
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    Here's a couple wall examples, with the walls at 40 pix wide. Both have the outer walls pushed out to the outer edge of the floor tiles, but:

    One version has the inner walls running down the center of the tiles, so the tokens never overlap the walls. However, you loose some space: 44 playable squares
    The other version has inner walls running down the center of the grid line (between the tiles), so the tokens overlap the walls. But you get more space: 52 playable squares

    If your walls are fairly thin, like these, I personally think the inner walls running down the center of the grid (between the tiles) look better. And the token overlap is minimal. With thicker walls, though, the other option would probably look/work better. In my Maze Map the walls are quite thick, so I have them running down the center of the tiles.

    But whatever you decide to do for the inner walls, I prefer the look of the outer walls with no overlap.

    But it's all a matter of personal taste and what you want for playability. So, just some options to think about!
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Modulable Dungeon Project - WIP.-neyjour-walls-example-01.png   Modulable Dungeon Project - WIP.-neyjour-walls-example-02.png  

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      Simon33600 is offline
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    Cool; thanks. I will look into that?
    How did you do the bevel? I am thinking about selecting my wall; tracing around them on a different layer, then applying a small blurr and removing everything that is not above the wall. That way, they should be a slight gradient on both sides, darker toward the edges...


    My main idea for this project is for people that don't have the time or inclination for doing their own map can just print these ones and re-arrange them as needed. Hell, a DM that is confortable enough with the game could improvise encounters as he pull the sections out and build the dungeon as needed... I'd like enough variety in the map that a would be DM could reuse them from one game to the other, or maybe build one of these old school mega-dungeons that take the players a whole campaign to explore...

    I did not work on the project too much though; but here is a big natural cave...
    I need to make a couple of tiles too connect it to the more "civilized" tiles I already have. And I want to make some mines in the same style...

    Modulable Dungeon Project - WIP.-modulable-dungeon-cave.png

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      Neyjour is offline
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    In Paint Shop Pro 8 (the program I use) the bevel effect can be found in Effects > 3D Effects > Inner Bevel

    Or, GIMP also has a bevel function. And if you go here:
    How do I apply a bevel effect without the black edges?

    ...In the second post, Jacktannery posted the link to a much better bevel script, along with installation instructions.

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      Johs is offline
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    Great minds think alike =P we're in the middle of a similar project.

  8. #8
      Simon33600 is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by Johs View Post
    Great minds think alike =P we're in the middle of a similar project.
    Reallyt? Cool!

    I looket at your project, it seems interesting...
    Also, maybe, some of the textures you use. That way, I could build up a transition tile or two and the players could continue their adventure underground... For example; the bandit would have constructed their lair on top on an existing complex that goes deep underground...

    Anyway, I added a new tile. Basically it represent a spot where the rough natural cave give way to a build in underground complex. This time I added a wee bit of furniture and made it a lived in drow complex... I suppose I will need to make an abandonned version of it too...
    Modulable Dungeon Project - WIP.-modulable-dungeon-complex-entrance.png

    I also tried to improve the walls, based on Neyjour's observations...

  9. #9
      Simon33600 is offline
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    Another furnished droom: a evil wizard's lab...

    Modulable Dungeon Project - WIP.-modulable-dungeon-wiazards-lab.png

  10. #10
      Simon33600 is offline
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    Next room in the complex; the "Spider Room", aka, a temple to Lloth.

    Modulable Dungeon Project - WIP.-modulable-dungeon-spider-room.png


    It is a re-visit on the old Fane of the Drow module.
    As usual, most of the furniture was gathered from the Dundjinni forums (except for the Altars that I improvised for the occasion).

    The central carving is from here with minor alterations, in particular to elongate the abdomen slightly; so that it would fit the grid a bit better...


    As always, an enterprising DM should be able to print the picture to scale and use the print-outs directly as a battlemap...

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