You know the summer is over and fall is coming in the Northern hemisphere, when we head over to Essen for the International Spieletage, or SPIEL for short. 4-days packed with board and role-playing games on the world’s largest consumer fair for board games – what’s not to like?

Come on over and check out the latest add-ons and updates for CC3+, have a chat with me (Ralf) about mapping, and wander the halls for the latest and greatest in boardgaming. What are you waiting for? See us in hall 2 at booth C-117.

Hall 2 plan

To celebrate the 35th Anniversary of her gaming group forum user Shessar hosted a map-making competition on the forum. You can see all the entrants and the rules here on the forum thread.

Here are the winners.

Bill – The Journey Begins (3rd place)

This is a perfect vehicle for miniatures when printed out at a suitable scale.

2nd – LoopySue – Henge Portal

I love the lighting in this, which provides a sense of mystery and foreboding.

1st – Monsen – Breaking Through

This map cleverly combines the mundane modern with the archaic and occult.

Here are a couple of others which show techniques I particularly like – this shows a great use of outer glow and bevel effects on the walls, as well as glows from the symbols.

This demonstrates CC3’s lighting features, and a variety of pallets to contrast the different areas


The Horror House on the Hill“See the brooding old villa up on the hill? A family used to live there, but a terrible fate befell them…”

Does that sound familiar? Who hasn’t read, watched or played through that old trope of the haunted hause on the hill? But still the ominous walls draw us towards the creaking stairs and warped doors. We examine the family’s fate, peek under the bed and get scared when the monster jumps out of the close behind us. Now Pär Lindström has created the perfect drawing style to map out the twisted interior of such a terror-infested house for the October issue of the Cartographer’s Annual 2016.

The issue is now available for CC3+ from the registration page for all subscribers. If you haven’t subscribed to the Annual 2016 yet, you can do so here.

CA117 Example 1A busy marketplace full of people shouting and haggling. A nimble, but over-confident cutpurse scrambling to escape the clumsy city guard. A dark alley at night with a party of assassins lying in wait for the heroes.

Do you need a map for this kind of scenario? Then the City Streets style created by Alyssa Faden is for you. As the September issue of the Cartographer’s Annual 2016 it provides everything you need to map out a vivid street scene, either as a reference map or a full battlemap to put on the table. And the included mapping guide tells you how to go about drawing it!

The issue is now available for CC3+ from the registration page for all subscribers. If you haven’t subscribed to the Annual 2016 yet, you can do so here.

06_AboveCloudsThis is a bit of a personal look at this year’s travel to Indianapolis and my experience on the ProFantasy booth at GenCon. Read on if you enjoy this sort of thing.

I enjoy traveling very much, but a transatlantic flight is still a tiring thing. It takes me about 2 hours to get to Frankfurt airport from where I live, so it always means an early morning start for me. There are no direct flights to Indianapolis from Europe, so the first leg of the journey usually takes me to New York, Detroit or Chicago. Then there’s immigration, another security check and the domestic flight to Indy. All of this easily eats up 20 hours or more. As I can’t sleep on the plane, you can imagine the general state I’m in when I arrive in Indy on Tuesday evening. I have to to say though, that recent changes in the way the US handles the immigration/security checks has reduced waiting times immensely. Where I used to stand 30 minutes to 2 hours in line, I can now just walk up to an immigration terminal and get through the whole thing in 10 minutes. Great!

09_BoothArrivalWednesday is set aside for booth setup. I meet up with Doug and Tommy, who’ve driven over from Columbus the day before, and we usually start building the booth around 10am – if the booth material has arrived yet, as it had this year. Having done this for a few years, we are a practiced team and get it done pretty quickly. As we are sharing the booth with Pelgrane Press and they have a lot more to do with all the heavy books to shift, we usually manage to help them out a bit. Often there’s a problem to sort out: Electricity hasn’t been laid, tables are missing, we need more chairs, etc. which means a trip to convention services or asking around at other exhibitors. This year was fairly easy on that, but Mayfair Games were very helpful in storing some palettes we didn’t have space for. Doug is the champion in getting help – he just has a way with people.

20_ArmadaWednesday evening there’s usually a little time available where I can get in a game or two. Tommy usually brings along some good games, and this year we managed to try a session of Star Wars: Armada which neither of us has had a chance to play before. My Imperial fleet managed to decimate his rebel scum – taking on Star Destroyers in close combat is not such a promising tactic after all. Yay!

Gaming takes my mind away from the jet lag exhaustion at this point, helping to get into the 6-hours-delayed day and night rhythm. If I’d retire to the hotel room, I’d just fall asleep and later be awake most of the night. Still I start waking up at 4am and then sleep only in small bursts until it’s get time get up. By the time I’m acclimatized, it usually time to fly back home to Germany.

25_DemoRunningThursday is the big day – the actual convention starts. It’s early hours for us, since the first customers can enter the exhibitor’s hall at 9am (VIGs – very important customers – spend extra on their tickets for this privilege). Since there is usually some last minute setup to do, things to check, and the computer to boot up, I’m in the hall at 8am, the earliest time you can enter as exhibitor.

The real rush begins when the hall opens to the general public and it’s always fun to see the crowd hurrying towards the booth with limited product or special offers. Fortunately they’ve now managed to convince everyone that running though the aisles is NOT a good idea – even if it had to be through threats of removing ticket privileges. More customers start arriving at our booth around that time, and I get into my routine of explaining (“What are you selling here?”) and/or demoing CC3+ (“Can you show me how it works?”) or the add-ons (“How do I create a starship deckplan”)?

22_RedCarpetWe had the the just released Perspectives 3 installed, but unfortunately no discs or boxes yet. That always makes it a bit hard to generate interest, but I was able to demo the isometric map-making to quite a few people and they liked what they saw! It’s great to see familiar faces and get wonderful feedback from old-time customers, but the largest part of the booth work is getting new people interested in CC3+ – and that is very rewarding. We’ve added at least 60 new people to the fold of CC3+ users over the course of the show, and I am sure several of those will show up on the forum with their work or come back to the booth next year to chat about their experience.

Thursday afternoon and Friday tend to be quieter which gives us the chance to take turns to wander the halls and look around. There’s never enough time to play an actual demo game at one of the many tables, but at least you get to check out new releases, special offers and old friends at other booths.

34_EnnieThursday night is usually reserved for the ProFantasy dinner where we enjoy a good meal together with some freelance cartographers. Unfortunately Alyssa Faden couldn’t make it to GenCon this year, but Mike Schley was there. I can’t say much about it yet, but I’m happy to hint, that there’ll be some cool stuff coming up from further Schley/Profantasy cooperation.

Friday is gala night where the ENnie awards are given out in a big ceremony. ProFantasy wasn’t involved, but Pelgrane Piess always is and won an amazing number of ENnies this year. Congratulations to our booth compatriots!

43_BatmanSaturday is always the busiest day of the show and we do the bulk of our sales. Fortunately it doesn’t get rowdy, but some customers do seem to go to extremes. Thanks, Batman!

Saturday evening I reserved for gaming with friends and we got a nice playtest session in for an upcoming Tolkien-themed deduction game from Ares Games, where the Nazgûl are hunting for the hobbits on their way from Bag End to Rivendell. I got to play Frodo, but the pesky ringwraiths managed to thwart me and recovered the One Ring on the road east of Bree. So much for Middle-earth!

35_DismantlingThings start to slowly wind down on Sunday, with the exhibitor’s hall closing at 4pm. Dismantling the booth and storing everything for shipping went well this year (it can be a pain) and we waved Tommy and Doug goodbye as they headed home. For us long-distance-flyers the trip home is on Monday, giving us time to gather for the big Pelgrane dinner and some drinks in the hotel bar later. Another GenCon well done!

Somehow the trips back to Germany always prove troublesome for me. This year I ran smack into the big Delta Airlines mess up. I missed the connecting flight from Detroit to Frankfurt and had to spent the night and most of the next day in Detroit. At least on the way back it’s not so stressful, as I wisely never place any important appointments on the two days after my return from Indianapolis.

Again it was a wonderful 4-days of gaming (well, mostly work actually, but still) and I’m looking forward to being back in Indianapolis next year!

CA116 River of LifeScorching desert, scouring dust storms and bleak landscapes are the daily lot of your adventuring party? Cruel magic has stripped most life from the surface of your world? This month’s Scorching Sun drawing style by TJ Vandel will let you map this kind of landscape in beautiful detail. Click the image on the right to see a high-detail version of the included example map.

In addition to the style, the included mapping guide gives you two tutorials on topics that come up in CC3+ mapping occasionally: How to add islands and lakes on top similar features without them getting obscured, and how to import fill styles from one drawing style into another.

The issue is now available for CC3+ from the registration page for all subscribers. If you haven’t subscribed to the Annual 2016 yet, you can do so here.

If you’ve used CC3+ on a very high resolution monitor or laptop (e.g. a Surface Pro), you will have come across the problem that the toolbar buttons and other interface parts get very, very small. This is because these parts do not scale with Windows settings and therefore remain at their fixed pixel size.

Update 7 (version 3.73) includes new high resolution icons and screen elements, and also scales toolbars and icons according to your Windows settings. This should greatly improve the usability of CC3+ on Retina-class displays. There may still be the odd glitch with text sizes at certain resolutions and dpi settings, and we will continue to work on these.

Update 7 brings your version of Campaign Cartographer 3+ up 3.73 and is available from the registration page, among the CC3+ downloads.

Tomb of Old King Akhanashen

Tomb of Old King Akhanashen by tonnichiwa

The summer is in full swing (even if it is a little cooler than usual here) and GenCon is getting very close, for ProFantasy’s annual trip to the mecca of gaming: Indianapolis. Let’s see what else has been worth of note in the Newsletter.




Two months ago we offered a pre-release of Perspectives 3 to our newsletter recipients and owners of Perspectives Pro. The offer was taken up enthusiastically and people started posting their first maps on the community forum just a few hours later. It also helped us to identify a few bugs, which we were able to fix, and we can now officially release Perspectives 3.

Here are a few images taken from the Profantasy forum of what users have created with Perspectives 3. Click on the images to go to the specific thread.

Tomb of Old King Akhanashen

Tomb of Old King Akhanashen by tonnichiwa

Egyptian Tomb by Shessar (with custom art)

Egyptian Tomb by Shessar (with custom art)

Temple pool by Shessar

Temple pool by Shessar

Ship's Landing by tonnichiwa

Ship’s Landing by tonnichiwa

SciFi Airlock by Dkarr (demonstrates custom textures and symbols)

SciFi Airlock by Dkarr (demonstrates custom textures and symbols)

Custom door and windows by Shessar

Custom door and windows by Shessar

Shessar has collected the custom art resources in this thread.

If you have previously installed the pre-release version of Perspectives 3, simply re-download the setup from your registration page and reinstall it. Just make sure you’ve updated CC3+ to the latest version (3.73) before you do. CC3+ Update 7 is available among your CC3+ downloads.

GenCon16It is this time of year again, the ENnie awards are being voted on and GenCon is drawing close. This year the “Best 4 Days in Gaming” are from August 4th to 7th, and of course ProFantasy will be in attendance. You’ll find us sharing with Pelgrane Press at booth #419, right next to Chaosium and Goodman Games.

We will have Perspectives 3 at the show, so f you haven’t purchased it yet and want to have a demo first, drop by and let us show you!
GenCon Exhibitor Hall

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