Friday, January 25, 2013

Swallowed Campaign / ¡Mapocalypse!

   New Year, new game! Kicking off a new campaign next Tuesday, focusing (initially at least) on a more nautical theme. I've got plans. Ye gods, do I have plans. But, then again - I always do. I guess we'll see how they pan out. The Level-0 Baelheim game is on hiatus for now. I still think that it was a success, though we wont be going forward with the setting for the time being. After a nearly three month break (during which my lovely wife and I welcomed a new, tiny human into our home), I was having difficulty getting myself back into the right headspace for the writing of it - the excitement had petered out, for me at least.
   One night clicking through the Cartographer's Guild (I am a barely closeted map fetishist), I was glancing through some maps I had made a few years ago and posted up for critique. It's a really supportive and constructive community over there, and I recommend that anyone who has the slightest interest in mapping (fantasy or otherwise) check them out. Anyhow, there was one particular map that I had entered into their monthly Lite Mapping Challenge contest that I have always been proud of. The challenge was to map a fairy tale location, and having always had a kind of terrible fascination with the story of Jonah and the whale, in all of its variations and iterations, I chose to map the belly of a ship-swallowing leviathan. I'm still proud of it, though my Photoshop-Fu has gotten better in the past couple of years. I think. Well, at least I've gotten better at blending my layer effects. Click to embiggen.

It won!

I can't imagine a more hopeless and hostile location to strand my PCs. I can't wait. I'll be redoing the map soon, greatly increasing the scale to accommodate a slightly longer term campaign arc, and in general expanding on the basic idea. Here will be the meat of the new game (so to speak). First, I just have to railroad my group down the throat of a larval god-worm. Should be good times. Anyhow, as I mentioned, the game will start off more nautically themed, with the PCs having been press-ganged into service aboard a privateer trading ship. I've ginned up an area map for them to start off in, set in a portion of the same world I have set our previous games in - Iberra. 

   The Eye of Idriis, that odd little ringsea, is where my leviathan makes it's home. Just have to get them there. The above map was made with references from the Saderan tutorial, from the aforementioned Cartographer's Guild. I think it came out nicely. I'm looking forward to some ship to ship combat, so my next order of business is to make up a few ship proxies without miring myself too deeply into perfect scale replica galleons with swinging booms and changeable sails and working anchors and johnny boats and elaborate figureheads and... Proxies, the safe word is proxies.
   Lastly, while I'm dropping maps here, I'm going to put up the following - my first submissions to the CG, a series of goblin warrens from an older campaign. I've always been particularly proud of the water effect on these, by the end I think I've gotten it just about right. Goblins! Aboleths! Goblin Aboleth Thralls! I have fond memories of this particular dungeon set.  Maybe someone will stumble on them and be able to put them to use.

/ ¡mapocalypse!

1 comment:

  1. Hizzah! It's good to see my DM back at work. I am looking forward to getting eaten? Sure...why not. I can't even begin to think of the horrors you will throw at us in the belly of the beast.

    Note about the goblin warrens, we the players don't often see the pretty maps, lest they be of the world or town.
    I can tell you, however, that there are memories abound from that devilish place. For instance, on the final map with the island in the center... there was an event that led some of us to that place gently rowing from the direction of #2, and another that sent some of us plummeting over the edge of that waterfall nearly drowning us.

    It made for several nights adventure (we play once a week for two or so hours) with many of the phattest of loots. I highly recommend it to any DMs out there, from the players perspective.