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  1. - Top - End - #1
    Troll in the Playground
     
    Erasmas's Avatar

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    Default Erasmas the Cartographer

    Hello everybody!

    So, I make maps for gaming (mainly for here on the Playground). I find them infinitely useful ever since I started played 3rd Edition and haven't looked back since. It helps settle arguments over distance, line of sight, groupings for spells/grenades/etc. and just adds a level of officialism to my games that I really, really like.

    Now, I use GiMP pretty much exclusively and these are mostly just "composite" type images - where I layer different textures/pictures over the top of one another and add effects where it is necessary. I also usually pop a grid down and put a row of letters and numbers on the axises, for easy referencing during play. To clarify, the majority of these textures and pictures are not my own, nor do I claim them as such... I'm just the one who modified them all into one (hopefully usable) image.

    Without further ado... here are some of my works! I'm curious to hear what you guys think.

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    A Roman-styled Shipyard (w/ Attached Office)


    Gladiator Fight (versus a Giant Scorpion)


    Fight Over a Hull Breach (Halo)


    Orbital Dogfight (Halo, again)


    Hospital Parking Lot (Matrix)

    "There's a beast in every man, and it stirs when you put a sword in his hand."
    - Ser Jorah Mormont
    "I fight... so that you don't have to."
    - Templar Thomas Marshall



  2. - Top - End - #2
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    PaladinGuy

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    Jul 2010

    Default Re: Erasmas the Cartographer

    Hmmm... while they do look excellently made, I think that they tend to look cluttered and dense, even when there's not a lot of gameplay clutter. For example, the background in the hull breach map is cool and all, but It's very dense and cluttered with stars, which detracts from where the focus of the map is - the two ships. In the context of the encounter, at least, the starfield is the place where there is nothing, but that's not visually represented.

    There's a similar thing going on with the parking lot - the asphalt and sidewalk are very, very textured and dense, making visual noise that it's easy to lose the bits of cover in, especially those motorcycles.

    In the shipyard, I'm a little uncertain as to what the brown space that's not ship or office is.

    These are by no means crippling flaws, and overall the maps look great, I'd be proud to have made them since I have all the artistic skill of a caffeinated antarctic wallaby, but these are just things that I've noticed that you might keep in mind in future maps.

    To reduce claustrophobia, maybe make the border with the plane coordinates a lighter color than the average brightness of the map? the dark red on the ship especially seems oppressive. Then again, maybe that's what you were going for. I guess it all comes down to the context of the enconter you're mapping.
    Stories, musings, and long form text LP available here

  3. - Top - End - #3
    Troll in the Playground
     
    Erasmas's Avatar

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    Default Re: Erasmas the Cartographer

    Thank you very much for taking the time to look through them and to leave the constructive criticism!

    I can definitely see what you are talking about with the clutter and distracting noise levels (at least in the examples that you gave). It is definitely something that I will be mindful of in the future.

    As for the brown stuff in the shipyard map... it's just supposed to be a dirt floor. It is packed down from decades of use, stained and trodden with any and all manner of byproducts of that kind of work.
    "There's a beast in every man, and it stirs when you put a sword in his hand."
    - Ser Jorah Mormont
    "I fight... so that you don't have to."
    - Templar Thomas Marshall



  4. - Top - End - #4
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    PaladinGuy

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    Jul 2010

    Default Re: Erasmas the Cartographer

    Ohhhhh, I see, it's in dry dock. Maybe you could add some beams keeping the ship upright, some logs underneath to help its eventual journey to the water?
    Stories, musings, and long form text LP available here

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    Troll in the Playground
     
    Erasmas's Avatar

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    Default Re: Erasmas the Cartographer

    Well... the battle has already happened, but yes... that would have been a good addition! There was a lot of communication between me and the game's player, both beforehand and during, so that helped.

    It was based on this idea:
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    "There's a beast in every man, and it stirs when you put a sword in his hand."
    - Ser Jorah Mormont
    "I fight... so that you don't have to."
    - Templar Thomas Marshall



  6. - Top - End - #6
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    PaladinGuy

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    Jul 2010

    Default Re: Erasmas the Cartographer

    Ah, I see. Yeah, that looks accurate, then. not much more you could have done to make it more clear, and if it works for the game, that's perfect.
    Stories, musings, and long form text LP available here

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