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Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Setting Maps

I'm a big fan of maps. When I get a setting book, the first thing I look at is the map. I don't know why, but maps are just really, really cool. That said, I do have my preferences.

Favorite rpg maps
Harn and Ivinia - Both are from Columbia Games. They are very detailed, and also make sense. Cities have lots of small villages surrounding them, and there are no deserts sitting right next to glaciers.

Forgotten Realms 1e - Yeah, they are pretty blank, and a glacier is sitting right next to plains and in a warm territory. But it's there due to a major magical curse. The wide open areas leave tons of room for me to stick in my own stuff, especially monsters. And the maps are huge, especially when you put them all together. Some of this is nostalgia, though.

MERP maps - All of them. These are works of art.

Earthdawn - Beautiful maps, that don't give away too much information. And the setting is quite different from standard D&D stuff.

Maps I don't really care for
Greyhawk 1e - I don't like the hexes. And most of the country names are downright silly.

Planescape - Love the setting. The maps are unusable in game, though they are pretty.

Wilderlands (Necromancer set) - Small, two-sided, hexes. I love the setting. The maps really needed to be bigger and in color, though that would have made the set ridiculously expensive.

3 comments:

Journalizer said...

Hey Dan,
What about these maps here:
Expedition to the Ruins of Greyhawk Map Gallery

If you don't mind me asking, what do you like and what do you dislike about the maps in the link?

By "hexes" you mean grid? Do you think a map should be more realistic or more simple for clarification. Cartoony or photorealistic?

When you says, "Planescape - Love the setting. The maps are unusable in game, though they are pretty."
What makes them unusable?

Thanks, -J

Dan said...

I like the Greyhawk Maps. They are nice looking, and the grids, when present, are not thick and don't obscure information or make the map look ugly.

Planescape had some beautiful maps, they just weren't that usable for me. Try HERE for examples of them.

Journalizer said...

Wow, those are totally different. Cool. I like them.

Thanks for the link. It is good to know about the diverse interpretations out there.