A little while ago we decided we needed (ok maybe wanted is a better word) a world map. We’re working on a logo for another game in the Topexx Universe and we want to use part of the world map in the logo. I know of a few world map generators I can visit. I looked at a few before finalizing on DonJon. DonJon actually has 2 world generators, the Fractal World Generator and the Fantasy World Generator. I created a few fractal worlds and they look great, but they weren’t matching the picture I had in my head. I switched over to the fantasy world, and as soon as I created the first map I knew this is the type of map we need want.
The Fantasy World Generator uses several parameters to make the map, such as random seed, % water, % ice, show geography, amount of rivers, hex grid and so on. I experimented with the settings so I understood what they all did. Now came the fun part, my wife and I went to work on finding the best combo of options for our map. Pick a seed, add more water, add less water, add more ice, add less ice, lots of rivers, very few rivers, now rinse and repeat with a new seed. We taxed the server several times and we had to wait so our request could be processed.
After about 2 hours we finally had the map we needed wanted for our world. This would be Cabune, the main world in our Topexx Universe setting. There are lots of interesting landmasses, lots of waters, and the best part is that it’s totally different from Earth. We wanted a land heavy world, one where the landmass spanned the globe and was unbroken. It’s beautiful.
Now we have our world, we passed it to our artist who was working on the Topexx Earth game logo. We discussed what section of the map we wanted to use and he gave us a rough sketch. Hmmm, now we see a problem. The hexes on the map are great for a useful map of the world, but not so good on a logo. Topexx Earth doesn’t use hexes in the game except as a small design choice on the card. We showed the logo to several people and we often got feedback of “what are the hexes used for?” We answered “nothing, they’re just part of the map.” “Oh, they seem like they would be a bigger part of the game if they’re prominent on the logo.” Now this feedback wasn’t universal, in fact we noticed a split. The artists who saw it liked it with the hexes, and the game designers liked it without. To all the artists and game designers, does this sound familiar? 🙂
Ultimately, we decided that we did not want the hexes on the logo. So we needed a the same map but without the hexes. I vaguely remember that we could choose with or without a hex grid overlay on DonJon. So I went back to DonJon and then it hit me, what seed did I use to create my world. I must have written it down somewhere, right? Right?? No! I could remember it clearly now, I created the world and saved the picture, and then closed the tab. Uggg! Ok, I can fix this, I’ll load up the map in Photoshop and I’ll remove the hex grid myself. How hard can it be? LOL I’m a complete noob at Photoshop, I barely know how to change my brushes. So that won’t work.
I go back to DonJon and try plugging in some seeds that I might have used – in other words wild ass guesses! And lo and behold I come up empty-handed. 🙁 Well I guess it’s time we shake up the world and let the water and landmasses settle into new locations. I spend some time creating new worlds and this time I save with the seed value used as the title. This way I can always recreate it. After a little tweaking I was able to make a map that we can live with and this time I saved with and without the hex overlay! Below on the right is Cabune with the hex grid, and on the left its without.
The moral of this story is to pay attention to the details and write them down. 🙂
Be awesome out there, and game on!