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Engar
06-16-2008, 07:27 PM
Curious if anyone uses this and shares files here? I like using it, but it takes me quite a bit of time.

mrken
06-16-2008, 10:44 PM
I have CC2, City Designer and Dungeon Designer. Unfortunately I have yet to learn how to do anything with them. I have read the for weeks and tried to follow the Manuel with no success. For the past year and a half it is just setting on my shelf while I wait for my wife to do some work on my computer. Maybe I will just reinstall it and when she wipes the HD I will just start over, again. lol

Farcaster
06-16-2008, 10:50 PM
Moved from Campaign Resources. Unless you are sharing an actual resource -- i.e. a map, an adventure, etc, post it in the Fantasy or D&D (or other genre) section as appropriate.

Skunkape
06-17-2008, 08:14 AM
I own CC3 and have been using it to build an area map for my campaign. It has a lot of great functions but is an extremely complex program, so work goes slow.

I keep meaning to purchase their Cartographer's Annual, but so far haven't had the extra funds laying around!:lol:

I do like the results you can get from the program and plan on purchasing their City and Dungeon Designer version 3 programs as well.

cplmac
06-17-2008, 09:54 AM
Let me start by saying that I do not have that program. From the sounds of a couple of the posts, it is rather slow going at using it. Might not be as elaborate, but how much faster is it to just draw the map by hand? I know, so I'll say it, how prehistoric.

Engar
06-17-2008, 11:59 AM
LOL, nope, I often think the old fashioned way is also wiser. The benefit of CC3 (or the like) is in the ongoing management (changes or corrections, linking maps to other maps or even word files, etc, just plain staying organized with growing map libraries). Also of large benefit is finding a great map online and then tweeking it to fit, which helps plan in a time crunch. Of course I do not have a lap top yet, so much of the benefit for me is negated. It does remove the traditional "artistic" element, but replaces it with a kind of techno artistry which once learned is easier to repeat quickly.

I suspect it is more of a distraction than it is worth, but maybe it will reach a point of returns down the road.

I do not see many posters here with CC3, but one thought I had which could not so easily be done and then shared with PnP is to generate a random blank world (oceans and land forms only) and see how many might be interested in populating a wedge of it with an original idea/region from their homebrew game.

Looks unlikely, but the program would make it realistic to transfer the files back and forth and using the links to include written data (descriptions, history, etc) could flesh out the maps. That could be a truly interesting realm. Might not work even if implemented, but a neat theory at least.

cplmac
06-17-2008, 12:16 PM
That would be interesting to see what turned out by having a collaboration on a world like that. Unfortunately, I agree that it is probably not something that can be easily started.

Demandred69
06-18-2008, 09:41 AM
I hate the install process. CC2 was simple. Now you need a patch and this and that with CC3. I just recently got CC3 and the Overland. I'm working with a number of people on a World Building Project, and I can't submit a map. I keep getting an error message.

tesral
06-18-2008, 11:22 AM
I've got it. I can't say I have done much with it. There is a learning curve and I haven't had the time to learn.

mrken
06-18-2008, 12:21 PM
I've got it. I can't say I have done much with it. There is a learning curve and I haven't had the time to learn.


Ditto that!!! I installed it after reading the manual about two weeks in whatever time I found, maybe about twenty or thirty hours. Then spent another week or two with the same kind of time commitment. Was able to do squat. Still I am hoping I can persist. I have seen what others can do and I know I too can do that. My problem is that I don't know how high the learning curve is above where I am currently. :(

Skunkape
06-19-2008, 07:34 AM
There is one really nice thing that most mapping programs allow, you can start with a continent level map, then create a number of other maps from that start by enlarging the coast line of the main continent map. This gives you more detailed maps in a shorter length of time because you copy elements from the original and paste them into the enlarged version.

Plus, you can lay down elements like mountain and forest symbols from a symbol library which allows you to create details on the maps much quicker than with hand drawn maps. But yes, the mapping programs tend to have sharp learning curves and are best used if you have some level of tech interest.

Plus, thereís nothing wrong with hand drawn maps, Iíve used those quite often in the past!

mrken
06-21-2008, 11:14 PM
One day I would like to import a world atlas into CC2 and then use those maps to create maps for my campaign. It is so nice to have actual maps to use. The world is so big and has such a varied landscape one does not have to invent anything but the history and the places. You just breeze past the world creation and just create the the details. According to the season I even have a variety of weather.

Engar
06-21-2008, 11:48 PM
I never looked it over in detail, but there is a "real world" map file with it. It may not have the level of detail you are looking for though.

Moritz
06-25-2008, 07:59 AM
I generally use http://home.paonline.com/zaikoski/ak/ for my terrain building. It's fast, easy, and I don't get crayon all over my desk.

<edit: Go to the RPG tools section - HexMap>

nijineko
06-28-2008, 04:10 PM
i've tried the demo a few times. with talent and/or effort, (lots of effort plus tutorials if one has no talent) some nice maps can be come up with. oh, and if you find and download a bunch of premade stuff from online. i find it faster to draw it out myself. i use painter, fireworks and gimp.

Briarthorn
08-13-2008, 07:40 PM
Argh, I was hoping to buy this program. I don't want something that isn't user friendly. How long do you think it would take to learn, and how much effort do you think would need to be put into it?

Stormhound
08-13-2008, 09:09 PM
Argh, I was hoping to buy this program. I don't want something that isn't user friendly. How long do you think it would take to learn, and how much effort do you think would need to be put into it?

Depends on what you want to get out of it. One of the neat things that ProFantasy is doing is the Cartographer's Annual, which includes tools that allow you to make some really awesome maps with a lot less effort than you'd think. Go check the one here (http://mysite.verizon.net/storm.hound/rpgfiles/northlands.jpg) that I posted, and the enlarged area (http://mysite.verizon.net/storm.hound/rpgfiles/overview.html) at the bottom of the page. Those represent a few hours' effort from a rough sketch, and I'm not exactly a power user. There are people who produce stuff with it that I couldn't touch, because I'm not after that level of artistry, but then I don't need it.

tesral
08-13-2008, 10:11 PM
Depends on what you want to get out of it. One of the neat things that ProFantasy is doing is the Cartographer's Annual, which includes tools that allow you to make some really awesome maps with a lot less effort than you'd think. Go check the one here (http://mysite.verizon.net/storm.hound/rpgfiles/northlands.jpg) that I posted, and the enlarged area (http://mysite.verizon.net/storm.hound/rpgfiles/overview.html) at the bottom of the page. Those represent a few hours' effort from a rough sketch, and I'm not exactly a power user. There are people who produce stuff with it that I couldn't touch, because I'm not after that level of artistry, but then I don't need it.

I have got to find the time to learn this thing. I have it, but I've done very little with it.

Stormhound
08-13-2008, 10:22 PM
I have got to find the time to learn this thing. I have it, but I've done very little with it.

Best advice I can give you is to start small with it...perhaps take a small area of your campaign with which the players are familiar, and create an appropriate map of it to give them. It'll give you practice, and should net you some positive feedback from the players which will give you incentive to use it further.

Briarthorn
08-14-2008, 12:02 AM
Depends on what you want to get out of it. One of the neat things that ProFantasy is doing is the Cartographer's Annual, which includes tools that allow you to make some really awesome maps with a lot less effort than you'd think. Go check the one here (http://mysite.verizon.net/storm.hound/rpgfiles/northlands.jpg) that I posted, and the enlarged area (http://mysite.verizon.net/storm.hound/rpgfiles/overview.html) at the bottom of the page. Those represent a few hours' effort from a rough sketch, and I'm not exactly a power user. There are people who produce stuff with it that I couldn't touch, because I'm not after that level of artistry, but then I don't need it.

That is awesome. I think you did a really good job. I'm gonna buy it after all now. Thanks for the help, Stormhound. I really appreciate it!

Engar
08-14-2008, 06:52 AM
...here (http://mysite.verizon.net/storm.hound/rpgfiles/northlands.jpg) ... enlarged area (http://mysite.verizon.net/storm.hound/rpgfiles/overview.html)...

That looks great. I love stealing, er...I mean looking at, peoples work.

Skunkape
08-14-2008, 06:56 AM
The latest version of the program makes a big difference between what was possible and what is possible. Currently, I have 2 maps on my site that are from CC2 and CC3.

The CC2 map (http://www.johnprime.com/wizard_quest/world/country/map_page.php?mapName=calvinnia_map.png&countryName=Calvinnia).

The CC3 map (http://www.johnprime.com/wizard_quest/world/country/map_page.php?mapName=galideeria_map.png&countryName=Galideeria).

As you can see, the latest product is hands above the previous one. I'm really interested in the annuals as well but so far haven't had the extra funds to buy them.

Stormhound
08-14-2008, 06:57 AM
Glad you like it. And one thing CC does well...allowing you to link maps. So I could (were I so inclined) divide the big map into areas, and make it so that I could zoom into each area by clicking. Then there are sheets and layers, letting you create different versions of the same map right on top of each other, displaying only the parts you want (player maps, anyone?)...and on and on. Feature-heavy. You just have to remember it's a CAD program, not a paint program, which is what gives it that much power, but that's why it has the learning curve.

One thing worth considering buying is the Tome of Ultimate Mapping...while it was made for a prior version, it's still relevant and contains tricks and tips that'll get you up to speed faster.

Kalanth
08-14-2008, 07:36 AM
I have always found CC to be to complex to use in any capacity. I use this instead: http://home.paonline.com/zaikoski/ak/TOOLS.HTM

The Hexmapper tool on this site is simple, fast and easy to use. I managed to make up a ton of maps and they hold the quality I need to run my games.

Briarthorn
08-14-2008, 01:07 PM
The latest version of the program makes a big difference between what was possible and what is possible. Currently, I have 2 maps on my site that are from CC2 and CC3.

The CC2 map (http://www.johnprime.com/wizard_quest/world/country/map_page.php?mapName=calvinnia_map.png&countryName=Calvinnia).

The CC3 map (http://www.johnprime.com/wizard_quest/world/country/map_page.php?mapName=galideeria_map.png&countryName=Galideeria).

As you can see, the latest product is hands above the previous one. I'm really interested in the annuals as well but so far haven't had the extra funds to buy them.

I can see a big difference. I thought the Calvinnia map was really nice, but the Galideeria is just simply fantastic. I heard that CC2 was near impossible to use. Do you find that CC3 is easier than CC2 was?


That looks great. I love stealing, er...I mean looking at, peoples work.

bahahaha

Briarthorn
08-14-2008, 01:09 PM
Glad you like it. And one thing CC does well...allowing you to link maps. So I could (were I so inclined) divide the big map into areas, and make it so that I could zoom into each area by clicking. Then there are sheets and layers, letting you create different versions of the same map right on top of each other, displaying only the parts you want (player maps, anyone?)...and on and on. Feature-heavy. You just have to remember it's a CAD program, not a paint program, which is what gives it that much power, but that's why it has the learning curve.

One thing worth considering buying is the Tome of Ultimate Mapping...while it was made for a prior version, it's still relevant and contains tricks and tips that'll get you up to speed faster.

Okay, I will look into that as well. Thanks again, you have been very helpful.



I have always found CC to be to complex to use in any capacity. I use this instead: http://home.paonline.com/zaikoski/ak/TOOLS.HTM

The Hexmapper tool on this site is simple, fast and easy to use. I managed to make up a ton of maps and they hold the quality I need to run my games.

Thanks, Kalanth! I'm gonna head over there and check this out.

Skunkape
08-14-2008, 01:15 PM
CC3 does seem easier to use to me. Course, that could just be because I had used CC2 first.

Engar
08-14-2008, 08:17 PM
CC3 has a serious learning curve. I found it easier than CC2 as well, but not much. It is essentially a CAD program. It produces excellent results and has many fine features. Just dedicate a few months of free time learning the ins and outs or take a computer aided drafting class at a local community college and you are all set. :-)

I use the map linking and the file linking in my maps. I also begin with Fractal Terrains, tweeking parameters until I have a base world generation I like. I even have my worlds planar alignment plotted. Then I "zoom in". I start with continental maps, then provincial, then regional, then territorial, then local, etc. Terminology is up for grabs, but you get the idea: top down. Now I do not develop everything fully. In fact, I may only develop the string pertinant to the PC's (their local continent with broad info, their local province with some basic political info, their region with local affiliations and organizations, finally their local towns and some personalities). Other areas may remain entirely undeveloped, partly detailed, or even open to completely spur of the moment definition (which I then must remember to write down for use later!).

CC serves me well for this. At least as well as paper maps I used to develop and with a few improved features like a backup to avoid the misery of loss of the original.

mrken
08-14-2008, 10:45 PM
You guys are really depressing me. My wife bought CC2, Dungeon Designer and City Designer 2 several years ago. After about a month of reading the manuals I though I would give it a go. Yeah, that lasted several days while I got stuck and was never able to figure out what to do to get around it. I think it was the layers that got me but I really don't remember. Maybe I just am too old to figure it out. :(

Engar
08-15-2008, 07:19 AM
You guys are really depressing me. My wife bought CC2, Dungeon Designer and City Designer 2 several years ago. After about a month of reading the manuals I though I would give it a go. Yeah, that lasted several days while I got stuck and was never able to figure out what to do to get around it. I think it was the layers that got me but I really don't remember. Maybe I just am too old to figure it out. :(

The layers are a pain. They are also really useful. mrken you also reminded me of another point, the manual is lousy. I mean it is attrocious and the help screens are not much better.

For me the first step was just to do stuff, make a map, toss symbols and lines and whatever out there. My first map was horrible. Then my next map was a little better looking but took forever. That was the point where I almost quit thinking I could hand draw three dozen beautiful detailed maps before I finished one CC version. Finally, I started learning some better techniques (like using a fill to populate an entire area with foliage vs. trying to paint it all). I am no artist, but now I can make very decent looking overland maps very quickly (including elevation contours as well as mountains/hills, rivers, foliage and lakes. Populating them with towns, roads, symbols, and labels still takes time, but doing it all is faster than hand drawing and much more easily editable.

Skunkape
08-15-2008, 08:00 AM
The layers are a pain. They are also really useful. mrken you also reminded me of another point, the manual is lousy. I mean it is attrocious and the help screens are not much better.

I agree with that statement completely! I think they should hire a better technical writer, but meh, I've managed to figure out most of what I want on my own.

mrken
08-15-2008, 08:43 AM
Someone over at the Yahoo forum http://games.groups.yahoo.com/group/cc2-l/ suggested I get the Annual to help. Has anyone ever bought it? It is tempting but the need must rise on my want list vs. the money list. :( Too bad because I really wanted that program to work.

Briarthorn
08-15-2008, 12:23 PM
CC3 has a serious learning curve. I found it easier than CC2 as well, but not much. It is essentially a CAD program. It produces excellent results and has many fine features. Just dedicate a few months of free time learning the ins and outs or take a computer aided drafting class at a local community college and you are all set. :-)

I use the map linking and the file linking in my maps. I also begin with Fractal Terrains, tweeking parameters until I have a base world generation I like. I even have my worlds planar alignment plotted. Then I "zoom in". I start with continental maps, then provincial, then regional, then territorial, then local, etc. Terminology is up for grabs, but you get the idea: top down. Now I do not develop everything fully. In fact, I may only develop the string pertinant to the PC's (their local continent with broad info, their local province with some basic political info, their region with local affiliations and organizations, finally their local towns and some personalities). Other areas may remain entirely undeveloped, partly detailed, or even open to completely spur of the moment definition (which I then must remember to write down for use later!).

CC serves me well for this. At least as well as paper maps I used to develop and with a few improved features like a backup to avoid the misery of loss of the original.

Hmm, sounds like it is hard, but I like a challenge so I'll still give it a go. Just not feeling as cocky about it as I was before. :D


The layers are a pain. They are also really useful. mrken you also reminded me of another point, the manual is lousy. I mean it is attrocious and the help screens are not much better.

For me the first step was just to do stuff, make a map, toss symbols and lines and whatever out there. My first map was horrible. Then my next map was a little better looking but took forever. That was the point where I almost quit thinking I could hand draw three dozen beautiful detailed maps before I finished one CC version. Finally, I started learning some better techniques (like using a fill to populate an entire area with foliage vs. trying to paint it all). I am no artist, but now I can make very decent looking overland maps very quickly (including elevation contours as well as mountains/hills, rivers, foliage and lakes. Populating them with towns, roads, symbols, and labels still takes time, but doing it all is faster than hand drawing and much more easily editable.

This sounds doable. Starting to get cocky again... ;)
Can we see your first map? Don't be shy, we'll remember it was your starting out what-am-I-doing-work.

Skunkape
08-15-2008, 12:49 PM
Someone over at the Yahoo forum http://games.groups.yahoo.com/group/cc2-l/ suggested I get the Annual to help. Has anyone ever bought it? It is tempting but the need must rise on my want list vs. the money list. :( Too bad because I really wanted that program to work.

I wish I could give you information about that, but I've been putting off buying it myself as well, I have the same issue as far as want list vs money list. Course, I've got a whole lot of things I'm wanting, so that's why I need to take extra time determining what I'm going to buy!:D

Engar
08-15-2008, 03:55 PM
Someone over at the Yahoo forum http://games.groups.yahoo.com/group/cc2-l/ suggested I get the Annual to help. Has anyone ever bought it? It is tempting but the need must rise on my want list vs. the money list. :( Too bad because I really wanted that program to work.

Sorry, I never used the annual. My suspicion is that the annual is a compilation of maps and while it may contain many great detail to reverse engineer, it is not directly useful for teaching technique. I believe they also have a map maker tutorial or something, it basically amounts to a manual you have to buy. Perhaps that one is better.

I am not sure how to post a map here. I started messing with CC back in the Core Rules release, then moved to CC2 (I think it was v2). CC3 essentially improved the pretty factor for me. The very technical features like shadows and lighting sources in CC3 are still beyond my ease of use for the program (or worth spending time perfecting) so prettier tiles was about it for me in upgrading. The world view maps are posted under realms at my website, www.abberant.com (http://www.abberant.com), but they are very poor examples since they are incredibly simple and even reduced in quality. Each area of my world map (latest one anyway) links to a smaller area, that area has links to even smaller regions, etc. It is the really detailed map that would best demonstrate some of the functions (and I am still no master, a true CAD artist would laugh at me). I will try to post a detailed one sometime later on my site.

Stormhound
08-15-2008, 06:18 PM
Someone over at the Yahoo forum http://games.groups.yahoo.com/group/cc2-l/ suggested I get the Annual to help. Has anyone ever bought it? It is tempting but the need must rise on my want list vs. the money list. :( Too bad because I really wanted that program to work.

Yes, I've been using the Annual (including to make the map that I linked to upthread).

The better part of the Annual is dedicated to providing mapping tools, especially for particular styles of maps (mine was done using the "Pete Fenlon" style pack (http://sub.profantasy.com/2008/january08.html) that enables you to make maps that look a lot like the old maps he did for all those Middle-Earth products that Iron Crown used to put out). You also get map packs and tutorials...the idea is to provide content that lets people use the product more easily and effectively. I suggest you poke around the info they give on the various months of output if you're trying to decide. The Mercator style pack from 2007 is another favorite of mine.