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    • CommentAuthorDkarr
    • CommentTimeApr 6th 2008 edited
     
    Here's one of the maps I created for an RPGA Adventure during the Dungeons & Dragons Experience (DDXP). This is based on the map that was provided for the adventure COR8-03 Aspirations and served as the throne room for a goblin king.

    Underground Tomb - CC3


    This is the battle map being used in actual play:
    Underground Tomb in Play
    • CommentAuthorDkarr
    • CommentTimeApr 6th 2008 edited
     
    Here's a map of a lava chamber with elevated catwalks. This map was printed for use as a battle mat for one of the final battles for our D&D Campaign. The lava was printed on transparent sheets and assembled over a Styrofoam base. Then it was back-lit using some Halloween lighting to give the area an eerily surreal atmosphere. The catwalks were built on foam core sheets and elevated using some megablocks building columns. The stairs from the catwalk were built using Styrofoam.

    Lava

    Here are pictures of the actual printed and built terrain in action:
    Magma Chamber 1

    Magma Chamber 2

    Magma Chamber 3
  1.  
    WOW!
    • CommentAuthorBidmaron
    • CommentTimeApr 8th 2008
     
    This is just awesome. It reminds me that we haven't heard of an update to Dioramas yet.
    --Dale--
    • CommentAuthorLatharion
    • CommentTimeApr 8th 2008
     
    I have to second DarrenHill's statement. Fabulous work! I especially liked the elevated catwalk and the use of transparency sheets for a lit lava effect. It really does seem to bring it to life. I hope your players appreciated the amount of time and energy that was spent in creating those settings.

    Ahh, I am also looking forward to the eventual Dioramas3 update (with all new artwork). Perhaps it will be the next one on the list (after CD3 that is!)
    • CommentAuthorloydb
    • CommentTimeApr 9th 2008
     
    That is tight!
    •  
      CommentAuthorEugee
    • CommentTimeApr 9th 2008
     
    It was a v3.5 game, so the players killed the BBEG in 2 rounds.

    (I'm just joking! That is an unbelievable map--I had some players ask me why I don't do maps like this--and I said I don't like them that much.)
    • CommentAuthorDkarr
    • CommentTimeApr 9th 2008
     
    Posted By: EugeeIt was a v3.5 game, so the players killed the BBEG in 2 rounds.

    (I'm just joking! That is an unbelievable map--I had some players ask me why I don't do maps like this--and I said I don't like them that much.)


    Thanks for the comments guys.

    Yeah, I do have a pretty awesome group and they get all excited when we have battles in these funky settings. So I like doing these kinds of things for them. It makes the combats more exciting than my drawings on the old Chessex battlemat. The 2d maps get used much more often, but the lava chamber was just an idea run amok. The funny thing is that the 3d map was actually less work to create, print, assemble and light. The 2d map was slightly more painful to create.
    • CommentAuthorBidmaron
    • CommentTimeApr 9th 2008
     
    What are 'halloween lights'? (used in backlighting lava pit)
    • CommentAuthorJimP
    • CommentTimeApr 10th 2008
     
    Halloween lights are like Christmas tree lights, but are sold just before Halloween and are orange.

    Some places in the US also sell Mardi Gras lights just before Mardi Gras. Gold, Blue, and green are the colors.
    • CommentAuthorloydb
    • CommentTimeApr 10th 2008
     
    Posted By: EugeeI had some players ask me why I don't do maps like this--and I said I don't like them that much.)


    Lol. Same.
    • CommentAuthorShadoWWW
    • CommentTimeJul 9th 2008
     
    I've got a question about Dioramas Pro. Is it possible to make building styles like this and this in Dioramas Pro, or there is a need to upgrade program to new version Dioramas 3 in future? I've seen previews from Dioramas Pro only with few-color-staff. Maybe some info how to make the nice manycoloured staff in Dioramas Pro would be appreciated in CA.
    • CommentAuthorGreebo
    • CommentTimeJul 9th 2008
     
    Wow, Dkarr!


    @ShadoWWW: In theory you should already be able to achieve things like this with Dioramas Pro in CC3 using bitmap fills instead of Dioramas own fills.
  2.  
    Dkarr,
    I to am an RPGA judge and I am looking at CC3 and DD3 to make maps for the new Living Forgotten Realms modules. Do you have any thoughts on how well the Dungeon Tile maps translate over into CC3?

    BTW, hope to see you at this year's DDXP. I will be one of Dave Christ's minions there.
    • CommentAuthorDkarr
    • CommentTimeOct 3rd 2008
     
    Hey Jason, I use CC3 / DD3 to setup my maps for RPGA adventures all the time. Dungeon Tiles or not, DD3 can easily handle any map, and the effects on DD3 are much better than anything on the Dungeon Tiles. In addition I print the whole map and don't have to worry about which tile goes where. The first map on this thread was used for running the LG mod "Aspirations". That map was not mapped with Dungeon Tiles on the adventure. I printed it in 8.5" x 11" paper, cut the edges, and mounted it on Foamcore Board.

    I'm currently working on the maps for The Black Knight of Arabel, an LFR adventure. The maps there do use Dungeon Tiles, but it is not in any way restricting my mapping with CC3/DD3. I've noticed that the maps I make with CC3 look much better because they are more closely "themed". With Dungeon Tiles sometimes the maps look weird because the tiles do not look like they belong together.

    Hope that helps, and keep on mapping.
  3.  
    Thanks Dkarr. I'm getting ready to run Cormyr next week. I would love to see how your maps would compare to the ones in the module write-up. If you could post it, I would be grateful. I am about 80% moved to buying DD3 and CC3. Seeing how Cormyr looks might just seal the deal!
  4.  
    Dkarr that is a pretty cool set up! Gives me a bit more inspiration for my latest battle maps and dungeon tiles. Thanks!
    • CommentAuthorDkarr
    • CommentTimeOct 12th 2008 edited
     
    Jason, sorry for the delay, been busy running some adventures. Here are the maps for the adventure. This is simply using the Profantasy symbols. I'm experimenting with the CSUAC files now, and finding that we can make even more distinct maps.

    Road to Arabel
    The Road to Arabel


    Dark Rider Haunt
    The Dark Rider's Haunt

    Arabel Theater
    Theater
    • CommentAuthorDkarr
    • CommentTimeOct 15th 2008
     
    Posted By: ShadoWWWI've got a question about Dioramas Pro. Is it possible to make building styles likethisandthisin Dioramas Pro, or there is a need to upgrade program to new version Dioramas 3 in future? I've seen previews from Dioramas Pro only with few-color-staff. Maybe some info how to make the nice manycoloured staff in Dioramas Pro would be appreciated in CA.


    I'm sorry I never answered this question. I've never tried it myself but I have seen a tower that was designed with Dioramas Pro. So yes, it is possible to use that software to design buildings and dungeons like that. If you use "photo-realistic" textures for fills you can achieve pretty much the same effects.
    • CommentAuthorDkarr
    • CommentTimeOct 15th 2008
     
    Some more maps for some RPGA events. Sometimes for these events they don't give the judges maps, except the ones used as illustrations on the adventure. When I organize these games I usually try to "recreate" those maps and print them to size for use by the judges. Here are two of the latest. I'm still having some issues with how my "roads" are coming out. If someone has some pointers they would be greatly appreciated.

    Road Map
    Road to somewhere

    Cave Entrance
    Foreboding Cave Entrance.
    • CommentAuthorDkarr
    • CommentTimeDec 1st 2008 edited
     
    Some more maps:

    These maps are for use with the RPGA Adventure Gangs of Wheloon. I will add more of them and possibly some pictures from the actual game when I have an opportunity.

    City Courtyard
    City Courtyard


    Gang's Hideout
    Gang Hideout
  5.  
    They look good.
    • CommentAuthorgoldgrae
    • CommentTimeDec 2nd 2008
     
    Those look fantastic. I was just thinking the other day that the lava needed light effects -- that takes it to a whole new level!

    So when making maps for a tabletop campaign...

    What do you feel is the best method of printing out, say, a dungeon crawl map? I am trying to find a way which allows me to print out nice battlemaps, but also allows me to keep what's just around the corner (that of the dungeon which they haven't discovered yet) and hidden things out of their view. Ideally, of course, with the ability to reveal these things as they discover them. The only thing that I have come up with is multiple printings of the same maps, and adding tiles as they progress or discover things. I only don't like it because I feel that it may tip them off sometimes, and it also seems a waste of paper and ink.

    Any suggestions?
  6.  
    I like the city courtyard! Well done!
    • CommentAuthorDkarr
    • CommentTimeDec 2nd 2008
     
    NeonKnight, Highland_Piper, thanks for the compliments.

    goldgrae, as for your question, it depends. When printing I usually print the map in sections (8.5" x 11") and then assemble it into a complete map (usually 24" x 36"). There have been many times that having the complete map pre-constructed was more important than the "surprise" factor. So in most of my games I'll assemble the complete map to save time. Then I'll take blank cardstock and place it over the parts that they have not visited.

    I tried the "assemble as they go" method, but it became too cumbersome and we lost too much momentum. Not as much as having to draw the map by hand but not as fast as just flipping a piece of blank cardboard off the map. I find that having the whole thing preassembled saves a lot of time and keeps the game pace fast.
  7.  
    Yeah, same here. I do similar things, sometimes I print out the maps, sometimes I just draw out the large chamber/collection of rooms they will enter before the game session. Sure, the players get a little extra out of game 'meta-knowledge' of the complex ahead of time, but it means we can just go bang-bang-bang from one encounter to the next without losing momentum.
    • CommentAuthorgoldgrae
    • CommentTimeDec 2nd 2008
     
    That makes sense. I had considered assembling the whole map and covering portions, but when I discounted it, I think I may have overestimated the amount of knowledge I would be giving away. I can think of a few things in particular that I could do that would give away more, but as long as I am relatively cautious, this seems to be the best solution.

    In terms of CC3/DD3, what size map yields a 24x36 inch (where an inch is five feet in scale)? I suppose, really, that any size map of that proportion would work. Any suggestions on what works best, though?
    • CommentAuthorDkarr
    • CommentTimeDec 2nd 2008
     
    Posted By: goldgraeThat makes sense. I had considered assembling the whole map and covering portions, but when I discounted it, I think I may have overestimated the amount of knowledge I would be giving away. I can think of a few things in particular that I could do that would give away more, but as long as I am relatively cautious, this seems to be the best solution.

    In terms of CC3/DD3, what size map yields a 24x36 inch (where an inch is five feet in scale)? I suppose, really, that any size map of that proportion would work. Any suggestions on what works best, though?


    As long as you don't print out the location of secret doors, for example, you should probably not be giving away too much. One thing I started doing is physically separating areas that are not found by normal means (secret rooms). I will build (assemble) my map but if the map contains an area that is secret, it will not be printed along with the regular map. That way I can easily put it in place only when the players find it, as a separate map.

    A 24" x 36" map is very large. It is comparable to a complete Chessex BattleMat in size. For scale you are talking about something that is 120' wide x 180' long. In dungeon terms that is pretty big. I usually end up making two maps fit in an area that size. If you look at the maps above, you could fit 2 of the "Foreboding Cave Entrance" maps side by side on a 24 x 36 map.
    • CommentAuthorgoldgrae
    • CommentTimeDec 2nd 2008
     
    Also a good idea, thanks. What about for rooms hidden somewhere in the middle of a dungeon? Is there a more elegant solution than simply having a tile to place over the 'blank' tile once they discover it?

    Yeah, I just figured that I could adjust the size and therefore the scale as necessary once I had a good base to work from, that's all.
    • CommentAuthorRob
    • CommentTimeDec 2nd 2008
     
    Gold: the only way i've ever managed it other then put the room down once they found it.. is with transperancy and having it so that it only shows up 'easily' when it's back lit.. which is a royal PAIN IN THE REAR to do.
    • CommentAuthorgoldgrae
    • CommentTimeDec 2nd 2008
     
    That does give me an idea, though. Maybe a transparency could be put to use as an overlay for the tiles. That is, rather than laying down a full printed tile that has been printed with the secret revealed. Might save ink. Although it would only work on relatively light-colored dungeons with dark-colored secrets...

    Maybe I could use label sheets and then just stick down the secret once they find it. While it might not work very well for hidden rooms in and of themselves, it could be used for sprung traps, secret doors, etc. Probably a pretty limited application, though.

    No reason, of course, that I can't just tell them verbally.
  8.  
    Posted By: goldgraeThat does give me an idea, though. Maybe a transparency could be put to use as an overlay for the tiles. That is, rather than laying down a full printed tile that has been printed with the secret revealed. Might save ink. Although it would only work on relatively light-colored dungeons with dark-colored secrets...

    Maybe I could use label sheets and then just stick down the secret once they find it. While it might not work very well for hidden rooms in and of themselves, it could be used for sprung traps, secret doors, etc. Probably a pretty limited application, though.

    No reason, of course, that I can't just tell them verbally.


    One way to do secrets is to hide every thing else and make a drawing with only the secrets in it. Pack them all together, print them and chop them out as you need them. You can keep the chopped out bits for later use.

    Alternatively, make a symbol catalog thumbnail file with real size units, print that, and chop out.
    • CommentAuthorDkarr
    • CommentTimeDec 10th 2008 edited
     
    The last of the maps for the Gangs of Wheloon adventure. BTW, we are actually running the adventure this weekend so I'll be able to get pictures of the actual maps in use.

    Temple Underground
    Temple Underground
  9.  
    That is very nice. I can't wait to see the shots in use!

    I'm hoping to get a few maps made that are frequently used by my players and get them printed poster size.
  10.  
    The only suggestion I have with regards to the roads in your picture is that you might want to take advantage of the fact that fractals don't scale with the image: you can zoom in and have the same degree of rough edging as you would at full size- but then when you zoom extents, the much more detailed edging looks far more ragged and organic. It takes longer to set them down, but the results are quite pleasing to the eye. You should be able to use a fill of your choice to get a nice, rough rock-and-dirt feel to it, and then go back in with small plants and the occasional bit of water, or use translucent layers to add ruts and similar things, maybe with some creative use of wall shadows and the like to add depth.
  11.  
    WOW!!!! You have given me hope!!! I'm a newbee. Great work
    • CommentAuthorJimP
    • CommentTimeDec 13th 2008 edited
     
    I have duneon floor tiles I made out of manilla envelopes... I'll soon start making them with CC3, etc.

    What I have on the game table for the players to see is only what their characters can see in a lantern, or what ever lighting source the game uses.

    For D&D, I made a clear contact paper rectangle for a bullseye lanter, or a circle for a torch, and put it between 2 sheets of paper, with an apropriate cut out area so the plastic still shows the map. Marked it off in scale distances for the map sheets in my 3-ring binder. So I can slide along as their characters move, then I place the floor tiles out on the table that show the dungeon area their characters can see.

    Here is the one I made for a 40' torch radiius.

    40' radious torch game aid

    When I switch to my Movable Type blog sometime this weekend, my word press blog will go away so here is the MT link: 40' radious torch game aid

    Note the MT blog wont go live until later. I'll post in 'Cartographic Resources' when I do so.
    • CommentAuthorDkarr
    • CommentTimeDec 14th 2008 edited
     
    Okay, as promised some pictures of the actual City Square map being used. The map is actually inside a vinyl sleeve that protects it, and allows us to write on top of it, but also give it a weird reflective surface. For this battle we actually also built some scaffolding where the combat could go in 3 dimensions. All in all the battle was a lot of fun.

    City Square Battle
    City Square Battle
    •  
      CommentAuthorRalf
    • CommentTimeDec 15th 2008
     
    Looks amazing. I love that scaffolding.
    • CommentAuthorDkarr
    • CommentTimeDec 15th 2008
     
    Posted By: RalfLooks amazing. I love that scaffolding.


    Thanks Ralf, coming from you that means a lot. The scaffolding was fun to build and was a big hit during the adventure. You could climb on it and have a commanding view of the city square (denying the enemy cover). But it was rickety so anyone at the bottom could try to shake you off the top. The other cool thing about the scaffolding is that you could fight on it or below it. 3D combat is a lot of fun.
    • CommentAuthorDkarr
    • CommentTimeDec 15th 2008 edited
     
    Keeping up with the RPGA adventures is quite challenging. There are so many maps and so little time. The following maps were all done in about a 4 hour period due to a short deadline. This is a testament to the versatility of CC3. There was only one unfortunate side effect to trying to work so fast. After I printed this to a 36" x 24" poster, my computer ran out of battery and powered down. I had forgotten to save after the last modifications so all I was left with was the beginnings of the earthmote map. Lots of crying ensued... LOL

    First up maps for the RPGA adventure "The Rotting Ruins of Galain"

    The first map is of an Earthmote. One of those "fantastic terrain" pieces. It consists of two cliff faces overlooking a valley. A suspension bridge crosses from one cliff to the Earthmote, a piece of ground that is suspended in mid air by magical means. Then another suspension bridge crosses the gap from the earthmote to the other cliff. Having a battle on top of the earthmote is tricky, since your opposition will definitely try to dump you off the side. Falling of the side is not a death sentence though, since you only fall to a lower level and not to the valley below. The combat atop the earthmote was a lot of fun.

    Earthmote Bridge
    Earth Mote

    City Street with ruins
    City Street of Galain

    Town Hall - Final Battle
    Town Hall
    • CommentAuthorDkarr
    • CommentTimeDec 15th 2008 edited
     
    This next set of maps are for the RPGA adventure Elder Wisdom. They are also part of that 4 hour window to attempt to get maps for an event with a tight deadline.

    The first is a wilderness encounter near a ring of standing stones.

    Wilderness Encounter
    Wilderness Map

    Ruined Tomb Areas
    Tomb Area

    Ruined Tomb Areas - Continued
    Tomb Area 2

    Ruined Tomb Areas - Continued
    Tomb Area 3
    • CommentAuthorNeonKnight
    • CommentTimeDec 16th 2008
     
    WOW! Must be ex-pen-sive! to print those all out.
    • CommentAuthorDkarr
    • CommentTimeDec 16th 2008 edited
     
    Posted By: NeonKnightWOW! Must be ex-pen-sive! to print those all out.


    It depends. I try to accomodate several maps on a 24" x 36" area. That way we can print them at Kinko's in black and white for $3.00 a sheet.

    When I have to print the color ones we either use an Inkjet Printer or a Color Laser. At that point our costs are really subsumed with all the other printing I normally have to do. So a color printout is about $.06 per page (8.5" x 11") on average. Most of those maps will use at least 4 sheets. So you're looking at about $.25 - $.75 per map depending on size.

    We can't do the large color map prints at Kinko's because of cost. I believe they charge $7 per square foot, for the large prints.
    • CommentAuthorBidmaron
    • CommentTimeDec 16th 2008
     
    Have you considered making the fcw files available? I'd like to see the techniques you used to make these.
    • CommentAuthorDkarr
    • CommentTimeDec 17th 2008
     
    Posted By: BidmaronHave you considered making the fcw files available? I'd like to see the techniques you used to make these.


    I did consider it, the problem is that most of these are using PNG Symbols that are not from Profantasy and will probably show up with lots of empty areas if you don't have the same file structure as I do. I believe PNG Symbols work somewhat different to vector symbols. I haven't tried it.
    •  
      CommentAuthorMonsen
    • CommentTimeDec 17th 2008 edited
     
    Posted By: DkarrI believe PNG Symbols work somewhat different to vector symbols.
    They do unfortunately. File structure and symbol distribution can be an issue.

    What we really need is a "Pack'n'Go" wizard that takes all non-standard png-files, puts them in a subfolder in the map's directory (and optionally encrypts them as well), and change all the references in the map to point to those copies of the images (using relative paths based on the map location). That would make maps much easier to distribute.
    • CommentAuthorDkarr
    • CommentTimeSep 15th 2009 edited
     
    Okay, I've had a long hiatus from mapping. Unfortunate, but sometimes life just gets in the way.

    However, a couple of weeks ago I signed up to run a My Realms adventure for character levels 4-7. My Realms adventures, for those that don't know, are adventures that you write yourself, place them within the context of the Forgotten Realms, and play them as part of an RPGA event for the Living Forgotten Realms campaign.

    I've been gaming for a very long time, and one of the inspirations for my original games where the descriptions of Dave Arneson's Blackmoor campaign. In particular the City of the Gods and Temple of the Frog. So as I set forward to create the adventure I decided to give homage to the classics. I created an adventure set in the Temple of the Frog. It took me the better part of a week to organize my thoughts and create the adventure. And if I was going to make this memorable I would need a set piece battle with one of the temple priests. Set piece battles call for awesome maps. So I turned once again to CC3 to build my battlemap. I had very limited time to do this so I could not spend a lot of time creating custom symbols or custom bitmap fills. However, I did take the time to build this as a 3D map, using some FoamCore as a base. Below is the map for the setpiece battle with Rialtan the Cultist Priest. Below that is a picture that one of the players snapped as the battle started.

    Map created with CC3
    Temple of the Frog - Final Encounter
    3D diorama for the actual battle (Photo by T. Keck)
    Temple Diorama
    Temple Diorama photo TempleDiorama_TKeck.jpg
    •  
      CommentAuthorArbanax
    • CommentTimeAug 9th 2010
     
    These are great maps out of interest how do you make it so that the grid is only small crosses rather than full lines>
    Ab
    • CommentAuthorDkarr
    • CommentTimeAug 9th 2010
     
    Posted By: ArbanaxThese are great maps out of interest how do you make it so that the grid is only small crosses rather than full lines>
    Ab


    I created a "cross" symbol with an origin point at the cross's center. I place the symbol at every grid intersection. They go on the grid sheet and the sheet has certain effects to make the grid less obvious though visible.

    Hope that helps.