I love it. This is going to be perfect for the environment! I like the new cave layer as well. It looks more alive and fitting for those living wall features that is included in the encounter
Couple comments...I think the new barnacle texture does work better, but there's something not quite right about how the pools of blood butt up against it (imho...can't really explain why, but it looks strange to me). I actually kind of like the whirlpool effect you have there. Finally, did you temporarily get rid of the other rivers/pools of blood or are they permanently gone? IMHO, I liked the overall composition better with them in it. (But...this map isn't for me, so you gotta do what makes you happy).
Would rep if I could....this is really looking amazing.
Thank you for the detailed feedback anomie - exactly what I am looking for when I post here.
-I'll take another look at the whirlpool when I get home and am back on my normal computer - perhaps its not as bad as a I thought.
-The rivers and pools of blood will all be included in the final map. The previous rivers/pools were just colour-blocks as I worked on other parts of the map, then I finalised the blood texture. Now that I am working on the pool and river banks, I have put a layer mask over the blood texture, and am bringing it back slowly as I do the banks. I still have not decided how to do the rivers yet.
-regarding the something 'not quite right', I have looked again and actually I think that I agree with you. Perhaps this is because the wall texture has a hollowness to it. I am going to try and darken it slightly by overlaying the walls with a 30% burn layer of pale pink, and maybe it will fix that. I'll post that up tonight, along with another couple of pools.
The barnacle texture works very good IMO. It's a little more "There's something living in there" than the other texture. I think you nailed the whirlpool too. Those are tough to create and I think you got it just right. Maybe you could try to darken the "far" side of the whirlpool to show it goes somewhere or put a little bit of what's supposed to be on the other side. This is really turning out great as all of your maps do. :)
Thanks JT - you are right about the whirlpool - it definitely needs a black bottom. I was working on it on my laptop at work and the screen there is MUCH darker so it looked completely different. The whirlpool isn't on this version but I'll insert it back in at the end.
Current WIP: added the pale pink burn layer to the barnacles to deepen the colour of the walls a bit; added another three pools of blood. This time I included my blockouts of the blood pools and rivers. I'm still dreading doing the rivers.
Perhaps some of the those pool banks are a little bright - not sure. I may need to adjust the brightness of some of them at the very end, once the rivers are done.
EDIT: Adjusted brightness of the pool banks. It's better now.
Looking great Jack! Not sure about adding 3 more pools. They look great, but I think that many pools might make the map look to "busy". It is hard to tell without actually seeing them, so I'm on the fence.
I'd agree with Bogie but If they are integral to the encounter then I guess you don't have any choice. This is really great. Makes me want to create something like this for my Abyssal Plane series. :)
The number of pools and rivers and placement and so on is all pre-decided so they are going to be placed; if it looks too busy then that is my fault for over-complicating the map.
However, what you have to realise is that this is a very zoomed in view of a HUGE map. At 40 x 40 squares it represents 200 feet x 200 feet. If printed out, this map (4000 px x 4000 pix at 72 ppi) would take up 55.5 Inches each side - that's four and a half feet (1.5m) tall and wide. It's the biggest map I've ever attempted and my (relatively decent) computer can barely handle it.
Finished the pools; added in the whirlpool; adjusted the wall colour (still not thrilled with the walls, but at least they are not too offensive). Now the very last part of the map, and the bit I am dreading - the rivers.
The entire map might be too pink; I'll have to think about it for a while.