Hmm, truthfully I'm not too crazy about either map, they have their ups and downs, so I'm going to try and go for a third style that uses aspects of both, mostly the land textures of the second one with the more fantasy tyle of the first. Forests are still are puzzle though, i'm still ot sure how to make convincing jungles and such. I like my temperate forests and the texture i use for the dryer forests but ican't add them to the map in a way that looks convincing. I've seen a map that has sort of what I'm after but I've been unable to replicate a similiar effect.
I could just take the "Total War" approacha and only have smalll groupings of trees and more open spaces, playing Empire Total War was actually what inspired me to experiment, the overland maps look real good.
I think I've fixed the river problem, i changed it to an outer bevel, thnx Ascension. Now back to experimenting.