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Thread: Pae'Aina Lilo Loa

  1. #1

    Default Pae'Aina Lilo Loa

    So I posted my first map over on the welcome forum, but I get the feeling it will get more views here. The map is for a polynesian themed setting a friend and I have been working on. It's my first map I've really made. So I'm just looking for some advice in general and to share. Thanks.

  2. #2


    Your rivers are doing some unnatural things. In almost every case, you have rivers that traverse the entire island, despite being right next to the sea near the source. On Tapu Tapu the rivers are even crazier. You've got rivers that connect to each other, then breaking into dozens of smaller rivers going to the sea - which is impossible. Think of a river as a tree. The trunk is the widest part of the river, the part that reaches the sea. Smaller rivers can join like branches from their sources to the main trunk. You ought to visit our How to get your rivers in the right place thread in the How-To forum.

    Another thing to consider is that most islands don't support rivers. Of the Hawaiian islands, for example, only the island of Kuau'i feature rivers - it has 3 rivers, but then Kuau'i is one of the rainiest places on Earth. All of the other islands of Hawaii feature ground water reservoirs under the surface, but no actual surface rivers.
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  3. #3
    Guild Journeyer gilgamec's Avatar
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    Mar 2009
    Colonia Claudia Ara Agrippinensium


    We don't get a lot of archipelago maps here, so this is neat to see! I've got some comments, though:

    • The seafloor elevations seem to just be dependent on the distance from shore; even in Pae'aina Kele, which I'm guessing is an atoll (it certainly looks like it), there's no "bowl"-shape of the seafloor.
    • As Gamerprinter pointed out, your rivers are strange. Even if we take the rejoining patterns as swampland (which you state in the legend), their flow doesn't make much sense. For example, what's up with the northern bay in Tapu Tapu? Rivers flow parallel to the coast for the entire length! Unless there's coastal mountains or something (not indicated on the map), they should flow right into that bay.
    • The key feature of the larger Polynesian islands is that they were created by volcanic activity, whether ongoing or not. But none of the larger islands here bear the marks of that creation: high areas in the middle of the islands, sloping down to the ocean. Take a look at topographic maps of Tahiti, Hawaii, or Fiji, and the same pattern is visible. In your larger islands, though, the mountains are off to one side, or in scattered places, or (like in Tapu Tapu) on the coasts!

    Anyway, I look forward to seeing more maps from you! Welcome to the Guild!

  4. #4


    Ah yes I'm aware of the volcanic origin of most tropical island chains, but this is a fantasy world so the origin is a little different. The archipelago used to be one big continent some thousand years ago but some sort of catastrophe happened which sundered the land and gives it the impression of lots of little islands. That's why the sea floor is fairly uniform too (at least the continental shelf), also cuz I had a week to make this originally and only just got the tools again to be able to edit it. It seems that the rivers are my biggest flaw, I'll certainly revise those and devise a new visual for swamp land. The parallel flowing "rivers" were just for me to visually distinguish where the swampy area's borders are, I probably should have deleted those.

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