The latest CC3+ update is 28 (version 3.98, released June 1st 2022). Download it from your Registration page.

Starting dimensions


This is my first time reaching out so please be gentle everyone. I've been dabbling on and off with CC3+ for a good while now but whenever I start I seem to hit the same snag: It asks me togive dimensions of the area I'm mapping.

I can see why that would be extremely useful: No worrying about scale or nothing of the sort. The thing is, I've got no idea what the dimensions for any given map should be. A map of the world? Continental level map? City map? Town map? Dungeon/encounter battle map? No clue.

Are there some rules of thumb to help someone like me, who has extremely hard time visualizing distances, to figure out what values to punch in when starting a map.

Your help is much appreciated!




  • JulianDracosJulianDracos Surveyor

    The dimensions can be anything. They primarily determine the scale of the symbols since most of the styles will scale automatically based on the dimensions you select. It also matters in the sense of if you want an accurate sized map. Finally it gives the aspect ratio for the map.

    While you have to put in numbers, they can represent anything - inches, feet, miles, etc. So a 1000x800 map could be feet, yards, or miles.

    If you are just learning the program, then I suggest you just leave them at the default value and play around. Once you learn the program, then you can start to decide on what the values should be.

    If you have some of the annuals, they come with a PDF file explaining how to make a map in that style. They usually tell you what size they are using. That can also provide a guide.

  • If you're struggling to work out the general sizes of things as a whole, you might find it useful to look through some real-world maps, like an atlas, a map of your local area and your own town, for instance. That should give you some ideas about the amount of detail visible on different area-sizes of map.

    It might help you too to draw out some sketch-maps by-hand first of what you're wanting to create in CC3+, as that way you can get a rough idea of what size of map is going to better-fit the map you're wanting to draw once you start-up in the program. Even if you don't get it right this way, you can always resize the map in CC3+ if you find the area's too large, or not large enough. We've all been there!

  • And if your maps look terrible to you, I've been there.

    Just keep working at it, you'll learn.

  • JulianDracosJulianDracos Surveyor

    I would say that you do not even need to look at real world maps. Suppose you want to do a village. Do an image search for like D&D village and you will find some maps. Find one that you like. Then, try to recreate it. Do the same for dungeon or overland. Once you learn how to make the maps, then you can start to think about the actual distances between places. Of course, some of the maps other people make that you can find online often have sizes listed, so that will also help.

  • I agree with Wyvern's approach about looking at real world things - and not just for settlements. There is amazing geography around - and New Orleans is one of the most amazing, and the Horizontal falls in Western Australia.

    For medieval villages, just look at European villages and towns and cut out all the outer suburbs. Towns on Crete are an inspiration to me - Hania, Iraklio, Rethymno and Agios Nikolaos are amazing.

    The third map is Hania, my favourite Cretan city, and the Venetian capital of Crete

Sign In or Register to comment.