Crowdsourced Project

We are considering to organize a crowd-sourced map project, to release under a non-commercial license. What do you think it should be? Here’s one idea:

A crowd-sourced interactive atlas

We could start with a basic world or continent map, perhaps created in FT3, then distribute sections for detailing. Or perhaps, people could draw different maps from the perspective of different characters / races in the world. You could submit other maps (cities, inns, etc) for inclusion in the Atlas, and detail areas which interest you.

Alternatively, we could create symbols sets, drawing tools, or even an add-on from crowd-sourced materials.

Post your ideas in the comments, and let us know if you’d be willing to contribute, edit or organize.

21 Responses to “Crowdsourced Project”

  1. […] Help us Decide on a Crowdsourced Project […]

  2. I think this is an exciting idea – my only concern would be organization. Who decides which maps make it? A “good map” is not a trivial endeavor and it’d be very disappointing to put a few days (or longer) in to a project only to find out someone has already mapped that tract of land, town, whatever, and it’s been accepted.

    That being said, with the right amount of organization I think this could be an amazing project!

  3. While an atlas sounds interesting, it has most value if you use all of it, which makes it less useful for anyone who already has a world.

    I’d vote for symbol packs — they can be organized, assigned, and completed more quickly. From other mapping projects, I’ve seen (and experienced) burnout — everyone has huge energy at the start, but little energy to finish.

    My votes:
    * Fair/Tournament furnishings: tents, carts, lists
    * City houses & buildings (more variety is needed)
    * Fields & agriculture: field textures, crops, equipment
    * Shorelines: sandy beaches, caves, cliffs, reefs, rocks

  4. I second Steve Davies.

  5. Possibly a city? This has the potential to be used by more people than creating an entire world or continent.

  6. While symbol sets are nice, there is a small problem: not everyone is skilled in drawing symbols, etc. and if we want it to be open to all, I would choose map making project.

    I think something similar to “Source maps” collections. 🙂

    “Inns, taverns, hotels & Restaurants”? 🙂

  7. I agree with Ererla. A symbol set will limit participation.

  8. I would really like more symbols as well. I for one would like more for us to be able to make overland battlemaps. Things that you would encounter in the wilderness for battles since many of them occur outside. We could use ridgelines, cliffs, hills, rivers, more vegetation, dungeon entrances, things like that.


  9. A crowdsourced world certainly has its possibilities if detailed by many. Each section could be claimed and needs to be updated in X period of time disallowing stagnation and promoting review before going “live”.

    However, there’s no reason not to start small and work outward toward a larger goal. A large port city, for example, allows for many shops, entertainment, NPCs, etc. Just outside the city someone decides to lay claim to a forest and the surrounding region while someone else has already begun work on the foothills of what promises to be a huge range of mountains.

    Providing organization, as mentioned above, is had there should be little reason not to allow an entire world to come from the minds of many.

  10. I vote you port your software to work on Mac OS.

  11. I love this idea. FT3 could be used to outline all the continents, with sections designed at scale x. Areas of these sections could then be allocated for design at scale y and then cities and other detailed areas of interest.

    Could be great.

  12. “We could start with a basic world or continent map, perhaps created in FT3, then distribute sections for detailing. Or perhaps, people could draw different maps from the perspective of different characters / races in the world. You could submit other maps (cities, inns, etc) for inclusion in the Atlas, and detail areas which interest you.”

    This. A lot of us just want cool maps for our RPGs. We don’t care if we make every bit of ourselves. And it really doesn’t matter what it looks like, as long it’s somewhat generic, with topological and climate variety.

  13. Perhaps an XML output from CC? The XML output would be useful from a game development perspective.

  14. Huh, thought I already posted a comment, but I don’t see it so….

    First I would suggest taking a look at the Cartographer’s Guild world building project here: for an idea on how to manage such a project.

    I also think starting out small would be best. Crowd source a city-pack, then crowd source a dungeon-pack, then crowd source an over-world pack, so on. This would give the people who have different preferences (and add-ons) a chance to make maps they really enjoy making.

  15. I like the idea for an atlas, but a pool of multifunctional tools like symbols, etc.. Also appeals to me a lot. It’s a toss up between the two for me. I would create a list of suggested crowd sourced projects and let the community vote for what most appeals to them this time around – a poll of sorts I guess.

  16. Personally, I would rather have more tools and resources to use for my own worlds, so I would rather see new symbol sets, add-ons etc. rather than an interactive atlas. In fact, I think crowd sourcing would be a wonderful way to raise funds for high quality bitmap artwork that can be sold as symbol and style packs, especially for the less popular gaming genres: if there is enough of an interest (e.g. Victorian Steampunk), then the project gets funded and green-lighted.

  17. I like the idea of a world building project, but I’m working on my own world so it would divide my interests. The idea of tools and symbols appeals to me much more, since I could use them for anything I’m working on. I agree with Steve Davies, especially on his agriculture idea. I was making a map of an island a while ago and got stuck, because I didn’t know how to put in fields and farms.

  18. That would be some crowd-sourced project!

  19. As others note, a problem with the world, continent, city will be sufficient real estate…a solution might be a science fiction “super environment”, a ring world, or infinite tube world.

    One special variation on symbols, that would be useful is more modern and higher technology….but the suggest about a fair could be applied, a science fiction set for a grand surplus and auction sale, the Jubilee Millennial Planet wide fair and sale.

  20. Having read over the other comments, I have to agree that a complete world, while an interesting project, will probably have limited appeal. However, a city could get just as detailed as an entire world, and with all it’s businesses, residences, sewers, etc, would be momre useful to more people.

    Alternatively, a small nation of just a few hundred square miles with a few cities, towns and a lot of villages could be a good middle ground.

  21. Count me in too!

    I think that start small is a good idea and attempt top keep the style consistent. Also, although based in an area, the idea should be to generate generic components that could have wide use. I’m talking villages, inns, shops, battlemap areas [ie Forest paths, graveyard, city streets, harbour, swamp, caves, dungeons etc.] right down to individual symbols.