King’s Landing, heart of power in Westeros, location of the Iron Throne. This city acts as the fulcrum for the plots and machinations of the warring factions of the Seven Kingdoms. This map is something of a dichotomy. It contains more detail than any of the world or regional maps, but fewer named locations. To see the high resolution version, you’ll need to pick up the poster map folio – The Lands of Ice and Fire – but if you want to see some detail shots, read on after the jump. Continue reading “King’s Landing”
Following the previous tutorial about town design here’s a tutorial on filling in the buildings in the town.
I’m jumping in at the stage where we’ve already got the terrain, major locations and roads mapped out. The next step is filling all the remaining space with buildings to turn a skeleton of a town into a town. The key here is to give the impression of a large number of buildings, without having to agonise over every single chimney pot and awning. Continue reading “How to use the pen tool to draw houses”
Today a quick mini-tutorial. This isn’t a photoshop tutorial, nor is it a tutorial for a polished finished map. This is a step by step in my own town creation method when I’m creating the first sketch layout. The key here is to have the town layout make sense.
Today Profantasy released my new fantasy city map style for Campaign Cartographer as their March Annual style. You can check out the full details here. The style contains 15 different house shapes, each with a range of colours and roofing, 12 different textures, and a bunch of miscellaneous extras from city walls and turrets to piers and trees.
I’m especially pleased with how the city walls and turrets came out. They can work as city walls, the walls on a compound, or even the structure in a full blown castle. Check out the full set, and the other example images.
The challenge with a city map is to lay out information on districts of the city as well as specific locations. The two can easily get confused, especially if you have a very detailed texture showing roofs and individual buildings. In this style I’m focusing on just showing the different districts. Individual locations of interest can then be placed on top by using icons, or something more elaborate.
1. Lay in the roads.
Here I’ve used a fixed width round brush, with a slightly wider width for main roads than minor roads. I’ve also used Photoshop’s layer styles to give the roads a dark outer glow to make it easier to read them. They’re white on a light background, but that won’t be an issue for long.
2. Define the city blocks
Here I’ve use the magic wand to select all the negative space where the city blocks are going to be. You can also use Select Pixels and then Invert Selection in photoshop. I’ve then shrunk the selection by 3px (though that depends on the resolution of your file of choice). The selection is then filled with black and this layer is set to overlay. I’ve also given the layer a layer style which is an internal stroke set to colour burn at 70% opacity. The result is that we can see all the city blocks, and the roads are visible as the negative space between the city blocks.
3. Delineate the different districts
Again we use the magic wand tool to get the selection of the city blocks in a specific district (you can also just get the selection by using the magic wand on the layer from step 2). Now, with one layer and one selection for each of the district, fill with the patter of your choice. Here I’ve used a striped pattern. I’ve set the stripes to a colour and used a combination of overlay and colour burn layer modes to create the effect.
Voila! An easy to read city map with clearly differentiated districts – all in less time than it takes to eat lunch. As ever, let me know if there are any questions in the comments section, or let me know if there are topics you’d like to see covered.
It’s a new month, and that means a new map pack. Once again we venture to cold and wintery climes – unlike the current balmy weather we’re enjoying on the Eastern Seaboard. Today’s map pack takes us deep into the heart of a besieged city of ice, with the armies of the attackers camped outside the central compound. A moat, crenelated walls and sturdy gates bat the final assault. In the stalemate, the attackers have built a robust barricade of carts and wagons to fend off any counter assault. Buildings are shattered from artillery fire but calm reigns before the inevitable storm of the final assault. (map preview after the jump) Continue reading “Barricades and Bonfires – the Siege of the Inner City”
So it seems it slipped my mind to post these maps up. They were created for Wayfinder #3 (a long time ago) and are free for people to download for their own use. I tend to stick to battlemap scale maps for my fantasy map packs as I feel those are the most useful. If you’d like to see maps like this as map packs – let me know in the comments.
First up – an archipelago:
Second – we have a small city (well, really a large town):
These are free for personal use. Feel free to download and share around under the CC-BY-NC-SA license. Who know, a series of islands and a fortified town on the water might be just what you need for the pirates in your Skull and Shackles game!
The Paizo blog today was all about the wonderful steampunk world of Zeitgeist from ENWorld and that reminded me that I need to post the rest of the Zeitgeist maps. I created these maps for the Island at the Axis of the World – the first module in the adventure path. You can download the adventure and the maps for free.
As well as the map of the City of Flint (above – or click here to see the map larger) I created an island map and a star fort for the adventure path: Continue reading “Zeitgeist Maps for Island at the Axis of the World”