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Thread: Medieval map creation project, give me your thoughts

  1. #1
    Guild Adept pasis's Avatar
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    Post Medieval map creation project, give me your thoughts

    I would like to hear you thoughts of the attached map I have been working on. This is still under construction and I'm currently adding more details and fixing some problems. This map is not intended to replicate real world by means of vegetation distribution etc. The main purpose is to suit into my medieval roleplaying campaign, so I have taken some liberties while creating it.
    The attached map is about 1/3 of the full map I have. The full map is 4000 x 6000 pix and each pixel represents 100m. When printed, 1millimeter represents 1 kilometer.

    I'm using Photoshop CS3 and each vegetation, roads, cities etc has their own layer. I have couple of problems though: You may have noticed that forests for example are not transparent, meaning that if there is a forest over the hills, only the forest is seen and hills are not visible. I have not been able to create satisfactory workaround for it so far. Another problem is that mountains look a bit like paste-ons (which they actually are).

    But please let me know your thoughts in good and bad...
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    Community Leader Gandwarf's Avatar
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    Wow, people have been posting some great maps the last few weeks. This is another beautiful map and I have given you some reputation for it. I keep giving it out nowadays

    I like the overall layout of your map very much, as well as the mountains, forests and different terrain types. Some small points of criticism or suggestions:

    - Some of the roads seem to be on TOP of the forests.
    - The city contours could stand out some more from the terrain (I love the contours, by the way!)
    - Maybe add some sandy beaches. As you have already placed different terrain types it would add something I think.
    - The rivers and roads are making a lot of twists and turns but to me it's not always obvious why. Some of the roads on the plains could be a bit straighter I think?

    Well, it's a great map. I wasn't too sure about the texture for the sea at first, but it definitely fits this style!
    Check out my City Designer 3 tutorials. See my fantasy (city) maps in this thread.

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    Guild Artisan Hoel's Avatar
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    Those mountains are great, how did you make them?

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    Community Leader Gandwarf's Avatar
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    You might also want to add some pieces of ice to the water near the frozen north. Like in this map (check the bay):
    http://www.cartographersguild.com/at...0&d=1230889564

    Oh and the yellow area is desert? I see some rivers running through the desert to the east. Maybe add just a bit of green land around the rivers.
    Last edited by Gandwarf; 01-03-2009 at 07:39 AM.
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    Community Leader Gandwarf's Avatar
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    LOL Hoel, I just noticed you gave me some reputation for the map Pasis made. Thanks
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    Community Leader Gandwarf's Avatar
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    Well, last post for now:
    I think there is a problem with the central lake. I count 4 rivers exitting it and that wouldn't normally happen I think.

    It's such a large and detailed map I spent some time studying it. I kept finding new stuff to marvel at.
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    Guild Journeyer Bohunk's Avatar
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    First of all great looking map. Nice fresh style and level of detail is incredible.

    The bugaboo (sp?) I have is that its a 3-D style map but rivers and roads etc. can be seen just behind the mountains, which kinda ruin the effect for me. I have seen plenty of 3-D style maps on this site that did this however and I don't know if it is wrong or not but to me rivers that flow just behind a mountain on a 3-D map should be out of the line of sight.

  8. #8
    Guild Artisan Hoel's Avatar
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    Gandwarf: You posted while i was typing. I just scrolled up to the post above mine and klicked. Noticed it when it was too late, but pasis got his rep.

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    Guild Adept pasis's Avatar
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    My intention indeed is to add some bits and peases to make it more realistic. The tricky part is to add the details without compromising the high level look.
    The aim for all terrain textures is to make them look a lot like hand drawn.

    Some of the roads are so narrow that Photoshop doesn't create proper shadows etc to the surrounding terrains. I will have to manually fix them and make photoshop think that thy are actually wider. I have tried and it works, but I haven't done it to the map yet.
    And as suggested I will add some ice to the water and some sandy beaches as well.

    The mountains...I love them and I hate them. Those are actually taken from Google earth (most of them from Euripean Alps) and then I used "cutout" filter to make them look like hand drawn. Next step was to add "emboss" and "texture" layer properties to get some parts to come out from the mountain surface. And then lot of manual correction to fit it into the lanscape. The thing I hate is that when using real mountains as a base I couldn't make them go just the way I wanted, but I had to stick with the ones I was able to pull out.

    The lightest yellow is a plain grassland, not desert. I'm not fully satisfied with the texture though...

    And not to forget, thanks all for comments and ideas...

  10. #10
    Community Leader Facebook Connected Steel General's Avatar
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    Overall I think this is quite good, some things to consider;

    1) Your rivers have some strange forkings and such that are not realistically possible, however if you have a reason for this then don't worry about it.

    2) A bit of blurring between your terrain transitions may help to alleviate some of that 'pasted-on' look you mentioned

    3) Move your road layer below the tree/forest layer even if it disappears in spots (you can always take an eraser to the trees later)
    My Finished Maps | My Challenge Maps | Ghoraja Juun, my largely stagnated campaign setting.

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