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Mapmaking for Online Games

hotranhotran Registered User regular
edited July 2011 in Critical Failures
I've played in several PbP's, some longer lived than others, but they've all included amazing maps. I'd love to run my own game, and the only thing keeping me from doing so is that I'm not sure how to even come close to that standard.

What do you, the DM's of the community, use to put together your maps? I've recently (as in half an hour ago) DL'd Maptools, and I can run it but have no real idea a) what I'm doing (maybe there's a sweet tutorial you'd recommend? I haven't noticed one yet) and b) do you use something different/better?

Serious thanks for any help. If this is covered somewhere else, a thousand apologies, but I haven't seen a similar thread and this is my first new thread.

The Long Way Down: Clank, Warforged Fighter
hotran on

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    FaranguFarangu I am a beardy man With a beardy planRegistered User regular
    I personally use Maptools. I know that there are people who can put some amazing images out, but I don't want to put in the time keeping up with downloading all the extra textures you would need.

    As for actually creating maps, you can get a video walkthrough of the basics here. Teaches you about layers, token properties, the drawing interface, and vision/LoS rules(if you want to take it that far).

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    AegisAegis Fear My Dance Overshot Toronto, Landed in OttawaRegistered User regular
    edited July 2011
    If you plan on using Maptools go to this link. Underneath the "Two Big Starters" heading there's a Mapping Objects link. That happens to be a ~2 GB (yes, gigabyte) torrent filled with textures that as far as I know is still being seeded enough that you can download it. This will pretty much be all you need as a texture base to make any sort of map (both of my current PbP games produce maps using nothing but these resources) as the standard textures that come with Maptools won't do anything for you.

    Installation instructions are pretty much to download it, then in maptools associate the directory, and then go have lunch or supper because it takes a while for it to go through so much, and then from then on they'll automatically be listed there for you to choose from whenever you start the program.

    Aegis on
    We'll see how long this blog lasts
    Currently DMing: None :(
    Characters
    [5e] Dural Melairkyn - AC 18 | HP 40 | Melee +5/1d8+3 | Spell +4/DC 12
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    SanderJKSanderJK Crocodylus Pontifex Sinterklasicus Madrid, 3000 ADRegistered User regular
    Yeah, that torrent is a lifesaver. If you are doing a fantasy campaign, it's almost certainly all you need. The drawing and objects themselves take up most of your time after that (hunting for art, and erasing backgrounds is a pain if you need something special). I'd say, start with a small but detailed map, first draw the largest and most important things (walls, trees, floors) and add details until you've had enough. Remember that most of your players probably won't pay nearly as much attention as you will to details. Watch the tutorials on basic drawing.

    The number one rule in maptools: Remember which layer you are on! Many tools behave differently depending on the layer.

    Fog of War is neat and pretty easy in maptools, and really adds to a quick feel of the map, and also impending threat.

    Are you planning to just make maps for PbPs, or are you planning on hosting? Because if the latter, there are more things you need to learn to run a smooth game (like setting up GM macro's for fast and hidden rolls, or quickly sending background info).

    Steam: SanderJK Origin: SanderJK
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    SkyCaptainSkyCaptain IndianaRegistered User regular
    edited July 2011
    I just found this site last week: http://www.pyromancers.com and it has an awesome mapmaker and scene viewer for running a play-by-post game.

    SkyCaptain on
    The RPG Bestiary - Dangerous foes and legendary monsters for D&D 4th Edition
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    Tiger BurningTiger Burning Dig if you will, the pictureRegistered User, SolidSaints Tube regular
    edited July 2011
    SkyCaptain wrote:
    I just found this site last week: http://www.pyromancer.com and it has an awesome mapmaker and scene viewer for running a play-by-post game.

    Thanks for the link, but you forgot the "s". :)http://pyromancers.com/

    I'm looking for map making tools too and this looks neat.

    Aegis wrote:
    If you plan on using Maptools go to this link. Underneath the "Two Big Starters" heading there's a Mapping Objects link. That happens to be a ~2 GB (yes, gigabyte) torrent filled with textures that as far as I know is still being seeded enough that you can download it. This will pretty much be all you need as a texture base to make any sort of map (both of my current PbP games produce maps using nothing but these resources) as the standard textures that come with Maptools won't do anything for you.

    22,716 items. :shock:

    Hahaha. I'm reading the image names as they associate with maptools.

    Like, 50 differents "cows"
    30 different "dolphins"
    "rancor" just 1

    Tiger Burning on
    Ain't no particular sign I'm more compatible with
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    SkyCaptainSkyCaptain IndianaRegistered User regular
    Hrm, I have "no idea" what you mean about a missing s.... :mrgreen:

    The RPG Bestiary - Dangerous foes and legendary monsters for D&D 4th Edition
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    hotranhotran Registered User regular
    Thank you folks very much. I'm got the Mapping Objects torrent going as we speak. I do plan on using it just for PbP's, so hopefully the basic construction stuff will be enough.

    The Long Way Down: Clank, Warforged Fighter
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