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Thread: A map or two from a new member

  1. #11
      Jiawen is offline
    Guild Novice Jiawen's Avatar
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    Thinking more about it, it still seems to me like the roads are the main problem. I didn't really design any major roads that lead from major settlement to major settlement, just minor roads that go from village to village, some of which incidentally happen to link up towns and cities. That feels like an area where I should put in some more work. It'd make it feel more naturalistic (at least to me) to put in major roads linking major settlements, then have more of the small paths be offshoots from those, rather than all roads being roughly equivalent. That would reduce the feel that all the roads are on a strict grid.

    It doesn't necessarily match the history of the island -- there has never been a major conquering technological power with a love of straight stone roads, unlike England had with the Romans -- but still, major settlements are likely to be connected by larger, more solidly built roads.

  2. #12
    Guild Master Gracious Donor Midgardsormr's Avatar
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    Keep in mind that a road doesn't necessarily have to be "built." "The path is made by walking upon it," as the philosopher said.
    Bryan Ray, visual effects artist
    http://www.bryanray.name

  3. #13
    Guild Journeyer Facebook Connected rpgmapmaker's Avatar
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    Map

    Okay... sorry for not explaining more. The red dots are Cities and the yellow dots are towns. But I do not disagree with you that there will be that many "small" villages in the world you have made. I do not have any real knowledge of the makeup of its population and such... but I think the majority of the "you need less" comments are based mostly on the scale and style of the map.

    Also I agree that the roads give the world a "Borg" take over feel... and you are right that they should be focused on travel between the larger cities. each road should "hit" as many places as posible on its path.

    Based on the scale of the map the roads to the villages (as well as the villages themselves) do not need to be shown on the main map.

    Every map has a reason for being... some show overall land shape and general information, some elevation and topography, while others are a closer look at the human element. I think you might be trying to show too much in the same map... notice that in your own explanation of the map you neutrally saw the need to give several different zoom levels... and that is how a world of this depth should be presented. Here is a "quick" example of what I mean:


    A map or two from a new member-king_temp1.jpg

    Again this is my opinion and more for ascetic purposes than informational... as you may have "game play" or other reasons for wanting to document where all the villages are on one map. I do not claim to be an expert… this is just my two cents.

    P.S. please just know that it really is meant to be a castle layout in the lower window... hehehe

    -Chris

  4. #14
      pyrandon is offline
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    Interesting conversation here! I've learned lots from the back and forth--and how nice we can all have an intellectual discussion about this important feature of fantasy cartography, learning from one anothers' expertise. Good job to all. Stop by my office & I'll distribute your gold star to you in person, as well as a laurel and hardy handshake.
    Don
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  6. #16
      landorl is offline
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    I think that you are right in the density of the villages, and their general placement, however, I do agree that it does clutter the map. Generally, what I do is show cities and towns, and leave off the small villages and the trails that lead to them. If I did place the villages, I would only place the ones that have services for outsiders such as an inn or blacksmith. Most villages would not have an inn, and only every other one would have a blacksmith.

  7. #17
      Jiawen is offline
    Guild Novice Jiawen's Avatar
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    My problem and its solution comes from three requirements:
    • I want to show the entire island, down to the level of listing single villages. I want to be able to say the names of the villages PCs pass through, or villages they hear rumors from, or villages they were born in, without having to make them up on the spot. I want that level of detail pre-generated, not left to my (not so great) improv abilities.
    • I want to develop it all on a single map rather than dividing it into regions. I find that dividing by region leads to varied aesthetics and logic, as well as conflicts at the interstices, and I want the whole to be well integrated.
    • My computer only has two gigs of ram. I simply can't work in the GIMP with a map larger than about 6000x4000, and Inkscape is already grinding to a halt with all the layers and objects I have to use.
    Given those limitations, I think the main resolution and level of detail works pretty well. (You're all viewing the 2400x1600 image full-size, right?) As I said, though, I plan to re-do a lot of the roads.

    As for different levels of resolution, I have those. The top level is a world map that only shows (in terms of settlements) where the river valleys are, no actual town or city locations at all. The next level down is the entire island (and other similarly-sized regions, but the island is the only one I've developed much so far). From there, it's down to sub-regions of the island; the big map I posted contains four or five of these. For the wiki, these sub-region maps are where villages and other single settlements will be indexed. (I do in fact want smaller sections of that large map to be one of the layers, but I still want to develop the whole at the full size. And, given the money and my employee discount, I hope to print the whole thing off at 36x48" or so, enough to show the single villages.)

  8. #18
      landorl is offline
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    I guess another suggestion might be to have a "Public" layer, and have a "private" layer for the villages. Only put the larger, more important villages on the "Public" layer, and put the others on the "Private" layer, so that you can have all of the villages you want, but when you want to display the map in a more "artistic" manner, you could hide them.

    Of course if you don't really care about displaying it in an artistic manner, then it doesn't matter.

  9. #19
      Redrobes is offline
    Software Dev/Rep Redrobes's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jiawen View Post
    My problem and its solution comes from three requirements... (etc)
    Thats basically a set of criteria for which I have been programming for a long time. It sounds like your taking some critical feedback for labeling all of the very small villages on a larger scale map. I think your issues are coming from trying to work at a single fixed scale because a large scale does not have enough space or detail to do it justice and a small scale uses too much memory. Take a look at this video and if thats interesting for you then you can mail me about it some more.

    Link to Video

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