Whether the heroes are fighting cybernetically augmented gangsters in the dirty streets of a metropolis or simply out for a night on the town, no Game Master wants to spend precious game time drawing every street and alley. Fortunately, with Paizo's latest Starfinder Flip-Mat, you don't have to! This line of gaming maps provides ready-to-use science fantasy set pieces for the busy Game Master. This double-sided map features an upscale, futuristic city center on one side and the dark and dangerous alleys of a dystopian megacity on the other, providing the perfect setting for any science fantasy urban escapade.
Don't waste time sketching when you could be playing. With Starfinder Flip-Mat: Urban Sprawl, you'll always be ready next time your players take to the streets looking for trouble!
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I've used each side of the Urban Sprawl flip-mat in at least one Starfinder scenario and I have to say it's a bit . . . weird. The idea is that one side is an "upscale, futuristic city center" while the other is the "dark and dangerous alleys of a dystopian megacity." I frankly find both sides cluttered and confusing with terrain details that are hard to decipher without some serious thought. The aesthetic is also a bit off on each in a way that I can't quite explain--though I'll do my best.
The brightly-lit, upscale side features a river meandering through the center, with gigantic lily pads (or lemon slices?) floating in it. There are a few different multi-level buildings, though I can't quite discern the purpose of each one. With its gentle stream, gardens, benches, and all-around organic feel, this looks to me more like "funky alien park" than it does "futuristic city center." I was expecting something more along the lines of robot-cars than park benches. It's not 100% bad--just not to spec and of limited usefulness because it is *so* distinctive. A common complaint I have of Paizo flip-mats is they try too hard to be special when, for replayability, they need to be more generic.
The other side has some objects I recognize--crates, cool futuristic motorcycles, wooden plank bridges--and a lot of stuff that I again just don't understand what they're supposed to be (like the jagged square concrete structures). Part of the map has a warehouse/scrapyard vibe, but I'm not sure if the rooms with all the beds are hovels or some kind of hotel. It's also hard to discern the vertical levels of different elements at a glance. It's cooler than the other side, but still cluttered with so much stuff that it makes for a claustrophobic, complicated place to have a battle.
Overall, this is a disappointing flip-mat considering how important it is to the line. Hopefully Paizo will try again soon and come out with something more functional.
Art is lovely, would be better if it were a street rather than a park
So one of the maps is basically a Mad Max-esque(or Akitonian) bandit hideout, and I think it's pretty good, and I'll probably get some good use out of it.
The other one is set in what seems to be a Castrovellian park(?), and I don't see my players going to a park especially often. I'd definitely prefer if it were a busy street with some different shops to both sides. I'll probably force it somehow, but I wish I didn't have to.
Dunno about grid lines yet, will update if they're bad/good.
Edit: Gridlines are perfect. If you want to export this to roll20, they're 24(width)x30(height), or 1680x2100.
Edit2: Please, please, please have these maps be the future standards by which you make your maps. Both the Cantina map pack and Adventure Path 1 and 2 maps have been a nightmare, with horribly uneven gridlines and half/two-thirds squares protruding out of the sides of the maps, completely messing them up. But these maps are completely effortless, and I cannot understate how important this is, at least to me.