"The Orion Arm" - Dawn of Victory
Hello there comrades,
Awhile back I posted a version of a map I'd been working on as part of the background for a mod project I'm a part of.
I redid the map from scratch in a new style, and I'm hoping the end product is a little better than my previous attempts.
With that said, I look forward to your comments and criticisms and whatnots.
it's OK. Nice feel, but I'd go for more vibrant colours against a black background...I like the lines though.
Reading through some of the critiques from your former map, I will say that this map does have a strikingly dissimilar style from your other one. I can't really say whether or not it is 'better'. It seems you took one of the major detractions from your last style, namely that it looked very flat, and tried to turn that to an advantage with a lot of hard, bold shapes. Without knowing a whole lot about your mod project or what it is based on, from looking at your map I'm guessing it must some type of Master of Orion/Galactic Civilizations type game since it would appear to be a map of the local Milky Way as can only be produced by squashing it into a 2D space. Your "stars" are really uniformly distributed and there is no overlap of "empires" that might indicate a 3D space.
I'd suggest providing some more differentiation between your "stars." You don't have a key so I'm not sure what the difference is between the circles and the circles with the starbursts on them. You might try color coding them a spectral type to add a little diversity if that is data you have readily available. I like the concentric circles with the hash marks indicating distance from the Sol system. I'm assuming the dashed lines are some sort of space lanes that restrict travel from system to system.
I agree with ravells you could go with some more vibrant colors on the black background. I thought the spacescape in your other map worked particularly well with all the shading and glow-y textures. While your other map is more artistic, this seems more informational, so more information would probably be in order.
Other than that I will also mention there's a lot of typos throughout the thing, assuming you are recreating names of actual places. I noticed "vancover" and "stravropol". Also, while I know this is a collaborative thing and you weren't responsible for naming stuff, I will mention that you've got the "Federative Republic of Rigel Kentaurus" on one side of Sol and the "Unified Centauri Protectorates" on another. Their respective capitals, Rigel Kentaurus and Alpha Centauri, are two names for the same actual star. Or maybe they've just got some serious star envy going on between them or something.
Are these all intended to be real stars? If so it would be nice to have the Hipparcos or Henry Draper numbers underneath them for reference (at least where you've renamed them). If these are fictional stars obviously that's not necessary.
I'm a bit curious about the borders. They look quite nice but they suggest complex borders in space far from any stars, which seems unlikely. This isn't to suggest that it's impossible to have such borders, it could mean that the borders are formed around unlisted low mass stars like red and brown dwarfs, or some sort of resource found in the gulf between stars, but without an explanation they look strange. (So I'm not suggesting the map needs to be changed in this regard, but there needs to be a reason to have borders like this.)
Along a similar vein, what do the lines between stars represent? Are these common trade routes, fixed wormhole options, or something else?