This is part city map and part battle map for my first campaign stop. My goals here is to get used to drawing from an overhead perspective and find the right balance between realistic and hand drawn/cartoony as well as making sure my players have a good map to start playing on!
In case you guys are interested in the backstory for this small island town...
Centuries ago, the world of Spriddvarld had undergone a slow change. In what is now known as The Ebb, magic had become more and more scarce as the younger generations were born without any magical ability. In the last hope of retaining the knowledge of the arcane arts, the aging generation of wizards created a repository in the mage town of Spellfall. The last magic user of their time guarded this library, passing away as he awaited an apprentice that would never arrive.
Magic did reappear though, just as slowly as it had disappeared. In the past sixty years, children are once again being born with an ability to wield magic. It is here in Spellfall that the first magic users after The Convalescence came to seek knowledge and it is here where the new generation of wizards are being trained.
The center of the town is a Mage Tower and the surrounding hillside is occupied by various houses and dormitories. The population is a mix of magic users as well as common town folk, who have made a living catering to the unusual needs and habits of the magic academy.
There are two docks on the island. The larger one accomodates trade and visitors from Port Elmy as well as the Ardashtians. The other is a private dock owned by the academy that is used for ventures to the Swirling Veldt and neighboring islands.
I like it! At first glace the distance scale made me look for elevation shading, since the scale is shaded. But then it clicked. Fun concept.
The colours definitely look nicer now. It might be worth adding some shading to the cliff faces to enhance the sense of height they give although it's pretty clear anyway (especially with the little sideview drawing).
I love seeing the progression of this map. The side-view drawing is helpful and interesting, and doesn't take away from the map itself. Everything is detailed, and I like being able to see into the buildings an the different levels of the tower. Honestly, I'd love to see more buildings! But of course, that depends where you're taking this map. I love the idea of tons of buildings, but the feeling now is that there's a sort of sparseness (at least in the area immediately around the tower). Maybe there's a larger town down that road leading away from the cliffs? I love you're texturing, details, and how easy it is to read such a unique map. Terrain like that can be hard, and you've done a great job with it.
I also wanted to give a feeling that the tower was here first and everything else sprung up around it, the forge is closer to the tower, followed by the general goods shop and finally an inn when adventurers became more interested in the tower's vast library. The port town is so far away because over the years they've learned a few things about how fickle magic can be at times and how flammable houses truly were. Also, magic users themselves are sort of weird and just because they live on the same island doesn't mean they have to share the same town.
@Larb: Definitely going to add more depth to the cliffs, I was thinking about it earlier but was also feeling a tad lazy... your comment gave me the gentle nudge that I needed :0