Cartographer Help Requested

Gamer Life General Discussion

First, let me make it clear that I am not looking for step by step instructions, nor am I asking for anyone to do the work for me. But I will entertain offers. ;-)

My friend, and GM, has had his game world running for about 30ish years now.
His world map started out as a hand sketch, then got scanned into digital format when the technology was new. Since then, it has been "colorized," and labeled, with no consistency and haphazardly.
To make matters worse, it is so low in resolution that it blurs terribly if you even try to zoom in on it.

So, what I am looking to do is improve it.

I'm looking for hints, tips, tricks, and suggestions on how to 1) increase resolution so that it can be zoomed in on, 2) clean up the labeling, 3) and generally make it more usable.

It doesn't have or need much detail. It is really just a political map with major geographical details.

If there is a way to do it like I would do it analog, I'd use an overlay to trace the continent lines, and political lines, then blow it up to clean them for higher resolution. Then I could label it consistently.

The big problem is I've never really used image editing software and I am lost trying to find anything.

So what should I do to start this?

If it helps, I'd prefer to use GIMP.

The Exchange

YOu are in trouble. I have tried every which way to do this on numerous such Maps on numerous software packages. Once you go High resolution on the Jpegs they become unusable by the ram chewing Image handlers. My only recomendation is to begin with the old image and blow to optimum scale, lay down multiple layers (possibily in Adobe's realy nice but pricey image software). Layers:[Basic Geography/Text/Mineral Symbols/Political Symbols/Movement of Races/...].

Then you might be able to salvage the Campaign Map.

I'd serously consider just redoing the map in a higher resolution while cleaning up all the labels and such. It sounds like its time this map got a little TLC in any case and a redo in higher resolution might help the map remain up to date and useful for the next five or six years.

Like you I have a campaign map thats 20 odd years old and I generally up date it at least every 8 years or so. Generally by that point the neat stuff one can do with new tools makes it worthwhile.

Thank you both for your input. I appreciate you taking the time, even if I don't like the answers. ;-)

I dread reworking the map from the ground up...

I was hoping that digital manipulation would actually make it easier for once. :-P

Perhaps I'll get a bit of luck, and someone will chime in with some good news before I am neck deep in rework...

Dark Archive

hey there i hope i bring the luck you need!

here is an incredibly useful gimp tutorial for making a map here

in general the Cartographer's guild has some incredibly maps and tutorials on it and very helpful people if you cant find help here i'd ask on there forum=)

Realy hope i helped, do try on there forums though they have some very experienced map makers and gimp users particularly Tuts by RoBa


Thank you Apathy.

I'll look into that. I do hope you bring me the luck I desperately crave! :-D

Disenchanter wrote:

I dread reworking the map from the ground up...

Its hard work, it'll seem to take forever. Sometimes your be really frustrated and others you'll be sure there must be a tool for what you want to do if only you could find it in the GIMP manual or in the endless blathering online...

When your done it all the frustrations and all the hard work will prove to have been a small, no an insignificant, price to pay for your wonderful campaign map.

Oh and a starting tip - start with the geography then go to settlements before finally moving on to the political aspects. Essentially geography informs settlement patterns and settlement patterns inform political infrastructure.

I hope you're right Jeremy.

It still seems to be a lot of effort for a friend though.

Disenchanter wrote:

I hope you're right Jeremy.

It still seems to be a lot of effort for a friend though.

...Yeah...I'll note I never did it for a friend. I did it for me and that really might be a pretty significant difference in how one views this after word.

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