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Thread: How Horrible is my Video Game Map?

  1. #1
      Sharpe is offline
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    Help How Horrible is my Video Game Map?

    First of all, this map sticks out like a sore thumb amongst the works of art of this forum, so let me apologize. I can improve considerably upon the map's visual appearance by taking the it into GIMP, but I'm not at that point yet. The tile layout needs to be finalized first or my work in a image editor will be in vain.

    Now, correct me if I'm wrong, but I've come to understand from reading these forums that rivers don't often split, and that they don't naturally run into lakes unless there is an equally-large outlet. Of course, early years of grade school teaches one that the world's climate becomes hotter toward the equator; it's either tropical and humid or arid and dry. The polar caps are so cold they are hostile to all but the most specialized forms of life.

    On to my question:

    Considering this forum's vast collective understanding of geography, how terrible is my video game map's layout, taking into account this is a standard, old-school RPG and that I'm using a tile-based editor? Don't go too hardcore on me; I just don't want to absolutely shatter anyone's suspension of disbelief into a million pieces.

    There's only one polar cap, I realize, and that will be fixed. Pretend there is another. Also, depending on the size of the continent surrounding the south pole, there probably shouldn't be a forest there. Speaking of which, I don't yet have a tile for non-snow-capped conifer trees to replace the broad-leaves representing forests in the north and south.

    I could only map the very largest rivers in the world, and I've no room for lakes and ponds and such.

    As for scale, I don't have the luxury of anything similar to it. There's no way I could say something like, "The Secret Island is about 2,166,086 square miles." This map is just a representation.

    It would take time, but I could make each continent a separate map to make them much larger, but no one will want to traverse such large land areas. This map is almost the maximum allowed by the tile editor.

    Without even further ado, my map:



    Are there glaring errors as far as the mountain, river and other terrain type placement?

    The tile editor is pretty good for dungeons and towns and things, but it's rather poor for overworld mapping, especially considering gaping segue between terrain types. I can improve considerably upon the map's visual appearance by taking the map it into GIMP, but I'm not at that point yet. It needs to be finalized first or my work in a image editor will be in vain.

    Thanks for reviewing and for your comments! They are greatly appreciated.


    -Sharpe

  2. #2
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    Hi, Sharpe,

    One possible thing (I won't call it an error, because I simply am not that knowledgeable) that I see is rivers. In Eden and the Dwarf Lands there are rivers that run parallel to mountain ranges. On the south-western continent, you have a river that starts out in a mountain lake in Mayan land, flows down to the plains, then either jumps the mountains or tunnels through to go to Egyptian Land. I'm a little non-plussed by that. I'm used to rivers that star in the mountains, then flow away from the mountains toward the sea.

    Now, if your back-story accounts for these things, then all is well: frankly, it's your map, and it's for (seemingly) a fantasy video game, so while the geography may not be what one would expect, it can be accounted for with a good back-story.

    Since you are making a video-game map, you don't have the same amount of space that one does on regular world maps. So because of the lack of room, there are trade-offs. However, while we can be as realistic or unrealistic as we wish, the one thing that (IMO) trumps realism EVERRY SINGLE TIME is the story. If changing the map as I have suggested would mess up the story, DON'T DO IT.

    Sorry--I get little emphatic from time to time.

  3. #3
      DevinNight is offline
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    I like the old school look. Makes me want to play Ultima. The only questionable thing I see is the large river on the Mayan Land, and only because it starts at the bottom, then goes through a mountainrange, when it hits the valley between the two ranges it would make for the coast before heading uphill into the mountains. Now if there is a large crack in that mountain range it can work. And since this is fantasy it would not take much to convince me of it.

  4. #4
      Coyotemax is offline
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    looks more or less reasonable to me, Devlin noted the only thing that's obvious to my eye, along with the solution i would have considered

    Reminds me of the map from the Battletech game on the c64

    My finished maps
    "...sometimes the most efficient way to make something look drawn by hand is to simply draw it by hand..."

  5. #5
      Sharpe is offline
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    Hey, thanks a lot guys! That's great advice; just what I was seeking. This forum is great.

    Good to hear from you again, too, DN! I hear you're keeping busy with those excellent commissions you do. No surprise -- you're a great artist and do such a reliable and consistent job with a fast turn-around.

    Okay, I can change the problem.

    I added another continent near the south arctic circle, too. I'll upload and see what you all think again.

    Thanks again!


    EDIT:
    Just noticed today is my one year anniversary on CG! Yay!
    Last edited by Sharpe; 01-31-2012 at 11:27 PM.

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