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Thread: [WIP] Unnamed continent for Magrathean (my first attempt at regional/world mapping)

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  1. #1

    Wip [WIP] Unnamed continent for Magrathean (my first attempt at regional/world mapping)

    Well, I was bored at work and temporarily worn out on my battle-mapping project, so I popped into the mapmaking request forum, saw Magrathean's request (here), and figured I'd give it a shot.

    Like the title says, this is my very first attempt at regional/world mapping--up until now I'd only done battle maps, but I'm always up for trying something new! C&C would be welcome, as I really feel like I have no idea what I'm doing.

    Attached is my first WIP attempt and Magrathean's original sketch, so you can see what I'm working from. I haven't added the political lines that he requested yet, and I guess there are a bunch of cities that weren't marked on the original map, so I am sure I'll do another revision soon.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

Name:	MapForMagrathean - by Joshua Bennett.jpg 
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ID:	26262   Click image for larger version. 

Name:	map.JPG 
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ID:	26261  

  2. #2


    Thanks a ton for this, Joshua.

    I really like the style. It really shows all the different terrain types and elevations. I only have a few comments/requests.

    This part of the continent lies at the far north of the world, so the entire upper part (from about Hoftz-Kunn up) should be covered in snow all year round.

    I'd rather not have the names of the races on the map, only the names of the kingdoms. I really love the red text, though, so if the kingdom names could be in that font and that color it'd be great. Also, Throndheim is no longer a kingdom, so i'd rather that name doesn't appear on the map.

    I just realized by looking at your map that my handwriting sucks. Here are the names of all the places:
    - Vasara is the big dragonborn kingdom at the northeast
    - - - its capital is called Sva Kihlek (it means "at center" in draconic) (you got that name right)
    - - - the other two cities are called Veditoa Qumado ("cold waters") and Skypeak (i think you got those city names right as well)
    - Nidavellier is the dwarf kingdom in the mountains just south of Vasara
    - - - Hoftz-Kunn is the capital of Nidavellier
    - - - the name of the fortress/town/thing in the southwestern mountains is Xanten
    - the halfling nation to the west of everything is called Fenrrifort
    - - - its capital is called Littleyork (place it anywhere you like within Fenrrifort)
    - - - at the eastern edge of Fenrrifort is a village called Finefort
    - the main elf kingdom, which occupies the entire east and center of the big forest, is called K'zim
    - - - there is a large coastal town (which isn't the capital of K'zim) where the forest river (the one that almost touches the much bigger river to the north) meets the sea; this port-town is called Neresse
    - the town in the big northern river (which doesn't have a name on my draft of the map) is called Fallcrest; it belongs to no kingdom, but is rather inhabited by members of all the races and is a sort of safe outpost for adventurers, traders and travellers
    - the "town" in the forest (near the river) isn't really a town; it's actually a tiny fortress/dungeon/jail which the humans use to imprison criminals and torture them (even though it lies in elf territory)
    - the sea southeast of K'zim is called the Dark Sea
    - the sea north of everything is called the Frozen Sea
    - the sea west of Fenrrifort is called Wintermist Sea
    (more names coming soon; i must rush away from the computer at the moment)

    The river at the southeast goes all the way to the coast, effectively separating the rest of the continent from that little piece of land south of the large forest.

    The southwest tip of everything, west of the southern mountains, isn't really the end of the continent, but the end of what has been explored. You know how in old world maps made by european sailors a lot of North America was unexplored and so the coastline was suddenly interrupted? If it's not a lot to ask, i'd like that sort of thing, please, perhaps with both sea and land fading into a neutral color (or white or black or whatever works) or whatever effect you prefer.

    Thank you once again.

  3. #3
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    That's pretty decent looking. One thing you might want to do is taper your rivers a bit; right now they look kind of chunky and blocked-off.

  4. #4
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    I like it as well - one other thing besides the rivers is the text, you might consider adding a soft white/yellow glow around it to help readability.
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    Color me impressed. Theres some rep heading your way.

  6. #6


    Okay, added political lines and took most/all of Mag's instructions. Hopefully the political line style doesn't cause the "rainbow map" problem that he specifically said he wanted to avoid. Green is Elven territory, red is Dragonborn, blue is Human, purple is Tiefling, Aqua-ish is hobbit-land and brown is Dwarf central. I also added a big 'ol volcano to house the monstrous dragon.

    Diamond: I'll take "pretty decent looking" with a smile! You were absolutely right about the rivers, I tapered them a few pixels towards the sources. Hopefully the new version's rivers fit in better, though I am worried that they almost disappear behind the political lines.
    Steel General: Thanks for the pointer. I was also using terrible fonts before (I didn't have any nice scripts available to me) so hopefully the new ones are more legible. I also added the glow you suggested.
    Redrobes: That means a lot coming from someone who has your talent and experience!

    Attached: version with and without political lines. There are some variations between them, I was fiddling with coloring/saturation and was still working on shifting things around to make them match their political boarders. Also noticed I forgot to complete that river to block off the the little landmass south of the forest. I'll add that on my next revision.

    Mag: If you want to pull down one of these images and just doodle all the cities/capitals/landmarks/things I missed on it in MS paint or something, I could slap them all on at once. Then I'd be sure to have them all where you want them, rather than relying on a description which I might misread.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

Name:	MapForMagrathean - by Joshua Bennett.jpg 
Views:	210 
Size:	3.82 MB 
ID:	26277  
    Last edited by RecklessEnthusiasm; 06-28-2010 at 10:23 PM.

  7. #7


    Pure awesomeness there, Joshua. Thank you once more.

    A few more notes:
    - you missed the N in Fenrrifort
    - Littleyork is a single word
    - You missed the Z in Hoftz-Kunn
    - the two rivers in the mountainous region in which Xanten lies don't quite touch the sea
    - Finefort appears as a region or country rather than as a town
    - you forgot to add the boundaries between the three elven kingdoms (as is, there's only one)
    - you wrote "Vediota" instead of "Veditoa" in the northernmost dragonborn village
    - i wonder whether it would look slightly better if the Z in K'zim were lowercase; can we try it and see how it looks?

    I love the new rivers and lakes, by the way. I don't think they disappear behind the political lines; maybe changing the shade of blue you used for the humans would help a little, though (just a suggestion; it's your call there). Would you mind adding a few more tiny rivers to the Fenrrifort area, please?

    Congratulations on that snow effect; i absolutely love it. I also loved your volcano touch; makes the big bad dragon look even meaner.

    I'm a little confused as to what the unnamed, square town icon west of Vasara is.

    I noticed you did fade the southwestern end. Thanks for that. Some of the dark land-sea boundary lines are missing over there, but it's coming out great. It looks subtle enough to appear natural.

    I also noticed that you added a greenish mist effect to the eladrin region (whose name i shall tell you shortly so that it doesn't appear as "Eladrin / Astral Sea"). I hadn't thought about that, and i really like the way it implies that the region is tied to another plane of existence without it actually having to be written.

    All in all, i'm in love with that map. Can't wait to see the next revision!

    Oh, i almost forgot! I'll attach a sketch of where some of the other cities lie (there are still many missing). I screwed up the map a little and some of the names may not be very readable, so here's the list:
    - Dankirk (human country south of Nidavellier)
    - Tanabel (capital of Dankirk)
    - Evakyl Rilark (city in Vasara)
    - Aussirra (city in Vasara)
    - Westmarch (city in Vasara)
    - Versveshivi (city in Vasara)
    - Ibahaliira Vargach (city in Vasara)
    - Usk (city in Vasara)
    - Bivnixvi Teiki (city in Vasara)
    - Malciv (city in Vasara)
    - Vilzriquathtor (city in Vasara)
    (all those weird-sounding names for the cities of Vasara actually mean various things in draconic; if you're interested, i can translate them into english for you)
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

Name:	more_cities.jpg 
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Size:	2.38 MB 
ID:	26287  

  8. #8


    Okay, I think we can check those off of the "to do" list. Are there a bunch more towns in the other non-draconic areas? If so, you should give them to me all at once, and I'll slap them all on at the same time--much more efficient.

    Think I fixed all the spellings, added the requested rivers, firmed up the coastline of the uncharted area in the southwest, etc.

    I am guessing I need a region name for the second human area, the tiefling area, and a whole lot of city names/locations, maybe the mountain ranges. Again, feel free to just slap these on an image in some legible color.

    Does this continent have a name yet? I could slap it on in giant script at the top--that would give me a nice sense of completion. Oh, just noticed "Westnarch." Oops.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

Name:	MapForMagrathean with political lines.jpg 
Views:	112 
Size:	3.51 MB 
ID:	26292  
    Last edited by RecklessEnthusiasm; 06-26-2010 at 08:58 AM.

  9. #9
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  10. #10
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    looking really good.. nice first overland map
    comments in no particular order:
    - The political borders seem a bit dominating, the actually make some of the land features hard to make out - I'd tone them down a bit, perhaps only have them where borders meet?
    - The citymarkers are a bit big, and so are the fonts - they draw away attetion from the map
    - some rivers in the top and bottom of the west part of the map still needs tapering
    nice texturing - good job, recieve some rep from my mace of repping +4
    regs tilt
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