Yeah I think you've got it now. Just keep going. Foremost is right, it might be a good idea to do the special buildings early (except shops, which were often mixed with houses anyway). I don't know what program you're using, but if its photoshop it might be worthwhile putting a drop shadow on the yard walls, to make them a bit more visible, or else change their colour so they show up more.
Yes, I intend to place temples, palace, magic school and buildings like this, and then only fill the rest with classic houses such as those I figure here.
I'm using GIMP, I chose a simple brush to make a trial with those walls, but I can try with some others, maybe a bit less dark... or a shadow. Let's try !
Thank you all ! :)
Added some important buildings that I labeled (for information).
I don't know if they look good... I'm not completely satisfied. Maybe their big size makes them less realistic, too sharp ?
Oh, and added a small shadow to the walls that delimit yards :)
Some main buildings modified, like the palace. Added some houses blocks, though I hope I'm not sliding towards a brain-looking like city again...
This takes time, and I have not much for mapping... slow but sure.
That Jail building (the big grey square) seems silly-huge.
In your mind picture your smallest house as a single small room maybe 10x8 feet, so basically enough room for a straw mat to sleep on, a lock box or whatever, and a hearth. Then imagine that jail compared to it. Just roofing (and it seems to be a flat roof too) a structure that size is a... colossal undertaking without modern materials. That's a convention centre. and without pre-modern lighting, the central rooms are gonna be in stygian darkness.
TL DR: add an inner courtyard (with a cross shaped centre so you effectively have four courtyards).
Why... yes, you are right. To be honest, I haven't a clue how to do that roof, but I didn't check its size. Silly, the word fits. I guess you are right about light in the inner cells, too.
I will make a try with a cross-shaped jail. I do not know how medieval jails were looking like, except the London Tower, but I even do not know what building was the jail.
Thank you for your comment, it helps me a lot ! :)
When I first saw that jail I thought it looked big, but I also thought that it might be deliberate. I haven't done any research into this, but I am pretty sure jails weren't a big deal in the medieval period. They were into punishment, but of a different sort (flogging, stocks, branding, maiming (eg. removing hands from thieves), and the ol' crowd pleaser, execution). Jails were only guarded rooms to hold someone in until the headsman/sheriff/whoever collected them. There certainly wouldn't have been individual cells for each prisoner serving an extended sentence.
Nobles, obviously, would be treated differently. My understanding is that they are treated more like hostages. They would be housed in a castle (or similarly well-fortified building, usually far from the cities), given a fairly luxurious suite of rooms, and be treated as guests who are not allowed to leave. There are numerous historic examples of this: Mary, Queen of Scots being the example that comes to mind. Hostages are kept alive because they might still be useful to someone, at a later time. Criminals are dealt with, one way or another.
What all of this means is A: jails were rare in medieval times. There are probably the occasional example, but not many (I think Newgate Prison in London is a good example). and B: prisons would usually get incorporated into an already fortified building. Newgate Prison was housed inside the city wall; dungeons beneath the castle, or high turrets on it might also be used (as you mention, the Tower of London). A building that is constructed in the city with the specific purpose of housing prisoners is unusual. Now these are just historical examples (and as I said, I didn't do any research into this). If you want prisons, go for it. I admit, they are very useful for storytelling. But you might want to make it smaller, and probably base the design on a castle, of some sort (actually, if you want an idea for a building that looks like it would be an ideal prison, maybe try the Chateau de Chenonceau from your own country).
I think this city is starting to look pretty good, by the way. I really like the palace and gardens. You might be interested in looking at Versailles, again in France, for royal garden designs.
Just two things you might want to consider:
are you deliberately making the houses smaller in the eastern part of the city to those you had in the north? I've noticed with fantasy city maps that houses have a tendency to shrink without the mapmaker realising it. Try
to be consistent. Unless the change in size is deliberate, in which case it's fine.
And you might be tending dangerously towards curvy mazelike alleys. I'd keep them mostly straight. Crooked and jagged is fine, but not curvy. I wouldn't change what you've already done, but bear it in mind as you
continue working on this.
Again, my thanks for the time you spend giving me advices :)
About the jail, maybe it would be better to incorporate the jail into a bigger structure including barracks and guardroom for city gates. And re-design it to make it smaller and more complex in structure (courtyards, two or three separated buildings ?).
The smaller houses in the central part of the city are deliberate, I appointed them as part of poorer districts, in opposition of the north district that is the merchant one. This is also why those houses have much smaller yards. In fact, the merchant district shall be surrounded by poorer districts. I guess those slums shall represent a third of the whole surface inside walls... this would be a good proportion considering the roleplay background of the city. Maybe it is not fully historically-based, anyway ?
I will try to make more straight alleys. I don't know why I'm eager to curve them that much...
Back to work. Uh. No, time to sleep, it is 0:35 AM here...
I like the progresses. I would either use "rougher" textures for the roofs or "smoother" ones for the terrain. As it is I perceive a disconnect between the quasi-realistic ground and the more "cartoonish" (not meant as something bad per se) roofs' colors.
Edit: as for the "prison", you can maintain the sense of its being huge but with a better aesthetics simply by carving one or more internal courtyards.
Thank you for your comment. The backgrounds are not meant to be definitive, as the desert one, for example. But I intend to make some modifications on roofs textures that may give some more homogeneity to the map :) wait and see...