Saturday, March 5, 2011

World of Bad Neighbor Mountain

Here are several maps of the campaign I ran from 1982-1985. My Regulars have already seen the detail map of Bad Neighbor Mountain from this campaign. I started this map by tracing coastlines out of my Altas and combining them. The bottom of this map is a backwards outline of Finland combined with the tip of India (Note: I ignored scale for the most part). I then placed the outline on a hex grid which I filled in with mountains, lakes, rivers, and settlements. The hexes are 25 miles across. Note the concept behind this map was to place it in the southern hemisphere, so the climate gets warmer as one moves towards the top of the map. The southern tip I envisioned as glaciated lake country similar to Minnesota or Finland.

Once I had the large map done, I took it to the copy store and made several copies to start laying different aspects of the campaign out. Below is an inset of the political divisions. Orange is the Anvan empire, a once great power slipping into decline. Light green is the Free city of Lirpan. Dark green are the Dwarven Holds in the mountains. Light blue is the southern elven forests. Dark purple are the towns of the sea raiders. Finally magenta is the Valley an area of small feudal states, where most of the adventures took place.

After laying out the political map on the southern tip. I noticed some issue with the map as I had drawn it. First the entire continent was completely mountainous. Second the terrain north of the lake country was completely the same repeat of mountains, rivers and towns BORING!!! So being the creator, I took the part I liked ,used a pair of scissors to cut that part away from the rest of the map, and taped it back down on a blank piece of hex paper which I then redrew as below. Now north of the valley is the Sea of sand.

Finally, I copied the map again using the enlarge function on the copier to give me a bigger map of the region I was most interested, used a light box to trace the map onto a blank piece of white paper, and worked it over with colored pencils to produce the map below, which I used as my map to show the players.

Of course almost all these steps can be done much easier with a computer graphics program these days (although I am still fond of the look and feel of my colored pencil work).

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