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Thread: My First Attempt - Continent Nytoga

  1. #1
      Mancer is offline
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    Wip My First Attempt - Continent Nytoga

    Welp, here's the first map that I've really tried to show anyone else. The tutorials (namely Ravells' and Soixante's) gave me some great stuff to start with, and hopefully I went "in the right direction."

    I'm going to post this WIP as I go. My eventual goal is to have a polished terrain map, a social-political map (of sorts), some trade route maps, and maybe even a couple detailed maps of the capitol cities (which intimidates me greatly). This project is to set the groundwork for a fantasy webcomic I have in the works. The story of the comic is going to be following several different people, from different sides of a war for space and resources. So, here's the first day's work on the basics of the continent.

    This is the northern half of Nytoga. The watermass in the middle is a massive saltwater lake (a trapped sea, from when two continents collided ages ago). The southern portion of Nytoga reverts to mostly uninhabited desert.

    I figured I'd go ahead and post what I have now for some constructive criticism before I go much farther.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails My First Attempt - Continent Nytoga-nytogabasic1.jpg  

  2. #2
      alizarine is offline
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    That is one beautiful map. I'd definitely say you're going in the right direction! The highlight on the mountains feels a bit white/clean and gives them a very slight plastic-y look just where the highlights are. Gorgeous shapes, fantastic mountains. It's just that highlight. Also, along the coastlines in the water there's a lighter "boarder" with a rather hard cut-off line. That kinda looks out of place on such a well- (but not over-) blended map. Other than those two minor points, this is a gorgeous map. The colors are well-chosen and everything works together really well. The water looks really nice too; personally the light looks like a spotlight a bit, but the color you chose is great. Dunno what to suggest about that semi-spotlight-effect, since the colors and lighting are nice and the texture is just great. Probably just leave it alone, actually - it looks fine, it's really just my personal preference. Keep this up; love to see more.

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    Community Leader Facebook Connected Steel General's Avatar
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    This is quite nice...couple of things that 'jumped out at me'

    1. The texture on the water seems a bit overwhelming to me, you might consider toning it down a bit.
    2. In the southeast you have what appears to be a river going from coast to coast. As a member of the 'River Police' I would be remiss in not pointing out that this doesn't normally happen. Of course if you have a reason for it, then just ignore this.

    Keep up the good work.
    My Finished Maps | My Challenge Maps | Ghoraja Juun, my largely stagnated campaign setting.

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      arsheesh is offline
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    First the praise. Nice overall landmass shape. The color palette is very nice, and the blending of colors in the land and on the mountains is particularly good. All in all this is an excellent beginning to a first map. Next the critique. The "crumpled paper" sea texture is, as Steel General mentioned, too prominent, it could definitely be toned down a bit. Conversely, the sea shelf surrounding the continent and its islands is not textured, or at least blended, enough. Up close the shelf looks like a lighter blob of color plopped down over the sea texture. I would recommend that you try to give the sea bumps texture surrounding the islands and land a bit more emphasis (e.g. more height). Likewise, I would try gradually blending the lighter hue with the darker to try to give the impression that the land is gradually emerging out of the depths of the ocean floor.

    Cheers,
    -Arsheesh

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      Rythal is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steel General View Post
    In the southeast you have what appears to be a river going from coast to coast. As a member of the 'River Police' I would be remiss in not pointing out that this doesn't normally happen. Of course if you have a reason for it, then just ignore this.
    It seems to me that that is an inland sea (can the OP confirm this?), in which case it is perfectly acceptable to have a river going from it to the ocean.

    as for the map, great job

  6. #6
      Mancer is offline
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    Alright, did a little bit more work today, and also worked on separating out the major nations that make up the area (still working on the key, so bare with me). For basic clarification, until I do get the key done, the khaki and purple countries are the two at war with one another, with the blotches of greenish tan land around them being land that's in depute. Green, Brown, Red, and Blue are other countries (some allied with one side or another, some not) and the white regions at the bottom the desert area. The blue country has control of the bottom bit of the lake, not pictured.

    As much as it pains me to say it ('cause separating the nations was a pain and a half) let me know if the borders don't make sense, please. They're not set in stone and I'd rather be told "oh, that looks like a dead donkey" now then farther down the line.

    Quote Originally Posted by alizarine View Post
    ...the coastlines in the water there's a lighter "boarder" with a rather hard cut-off line. That kinda looks out of place ... personally the light looks like a spotlight a bit...
    The original intent of the "spotlight" area was to help convey a bit of the roundness. I've added the longitude and latitude lines.. not sure if it helps, hinders, or makes the lighting look even more out of place. I actually fussed with the water for a long time (I couldn't figure out what I did to make the "border" in the first place until I actually got a full nights sleep... heh.) but I think it's looking a bit better now.

    Quote Originally Posted by Steel General View Post
    1. The texture on the water seems a bit overwhelming to me, you might consider toning it down a bit.
    2. In the southeast you have what appears to be a river going from coast to coast. As a member of the 'River Police' I would be remiss in not pointing out that this doesn't normally happen. Of course if you have a reason for it, then just ignore this.
    I agree on the water. It was over done. I think I was trying for a hand drawn old map and a satellite image at the same time. Not my goal image. I calmed it down some, blued it up more.
    I'm not really sure what you're pointing to in the south east... I do have those three major rivers coming off of the mountains, but they're not intersecting. Maybe I should pull away the mountains some? In the Nations map it might be a little clearer. On the southwest side I have the one river running from the "giant lake" (yes, I need to come up with a name for it) and going to the ocean. Not appropriate, maybe? I'm definitely not as experienced as I would like to be in geography, so any advice would be appreciated.

    Quote Originally Posted by arsheesh View Post
    ...the sea shelf surrounding the continent and its islands is not textured, or at least blended, enough. Up close the shelf looks like a lighter blob of color plopped down over the sea texture. I would recommend that you try to give the sea bumps texture surrounding the islands and land a bit more emphasis (e.g. more height). Likewise, I would try gradually blending the lighter hue with the darker to try to give the impression that the land is gradually emerging out of the depths of the ocean floor.
    I tried adding more "island texture" around some of the masses, and I'm not completely sure if the effect works enough to spend hours on it... and I'm not exactly sure of the effect you're going for. Could you point me to someone else's map or a google map that shows what you're trying to describe?

    Thanks so much for all the help already everyone!
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails My First Attempt - Continent Nytoga-nytoganations5.jpg   My First Attempt - Continent Nytoga-nytogabasic2.jpg  

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      Mancer is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rythal View Post
    It seems to me that that is an inland sea (can the OP confirm this?), in which case it is perfectly acceptable to have a river going from it to the ocean.

    as for the map, great job
    First, thank ya =)

    Yeah, the watermass in the middle is an inland sea, with the only connection to the ocean being that little river. I was playing with the idea of shrinking the image until I could show all of the lake and its surrounding desert, but I feel like that would take away from the focus of the image, which is the two "main character" nations.

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      arsheesh is offline
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    Hey Mancer, this map is progressing nicely! As for my earlier comment, by toning down the sea bumps and adding consecutive graded hues of blue you have managed to achieve the sense of height that I was referring to (in fact, your sea shelves loos somewhat like what you would expect to find on an atlas style map). Great job, and have some rep for such a great beginning.

    Cheers,
    -Arsheesh

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    Community Leader Facebook Connected Steel General's Avatar
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    Ooops my bad, I meant SouthWEST and since the body of water in the center is an inland see, you can just ignore my comment about the river.
    My Finished Maps | My Challenge Maps | Ghoraja Juun, my largely stagnated campaign setting.

    Unless otherwise stated by me in the post, all work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 3.0 United States License.



  10. #10
      Mancer is offline
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    Haven't had as much time to work on things as I would like, and dealing with tiny edits always drive me batty...

    I started making the most recent to be my trade routes map; I figured having the lighter middles would make it easier, but still wanted the different nations to be visible. When I went to change the layers up there were some funky artifacts between the edges of the territories and around the rivers, so its been a lot of little fixes. See some of edges did change a little bit to make things clearer, I hope.

    Oh, and some points for everybody for helping me so far. =)

    Next I"m going to work on putting names to everything and getting some Keys in.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails My First Attempt - Continent Nytoga-nytogatraderoutesmap.jpg   My First Attempt - Continent Nytoga-nytogaterrialmap.jpg  

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