Ancient Tombs
(Download the FCW file.)

This was a fun project. Knowing I have an Isometric version of this tomb in an upcoming annual to map out, led me to do a little research on just exactly how or what I was going to map. I wanted to find something simple, as I am not very familiar with the isometric/perspectives maps ProFantasy offers, although I do own them, I just haven’t found myself using them, which makes this project even better! Anyway, I found my way to a fantastic site, https://www.osirisnet.net/3d-tours/e_3d-tours.htm which led me to tomb QV66, otherwise known as the tomb of Queen Nefertari, one of the most beautiful tombs found to date. Continue reading »

The Savage CoastThe July issue of the Cartographer’s Annual is now available for all subscribers. Create wonderful sprawling and detailed overland maps with Sue Daniel’s new style “Spectrum Overland”.

More than 150 highly detailed symbols of mountains, hills, trees and towns make each map a little masterpiece to explore. We will expanding the style with another set of gorgeous symbols in a second issue later this year to give you even more options.

If you want to see a Spectrum Overland being created, check out this Live Mapping session from last Thursday, where Ralf goes through the whole map creation process, just as if following the pdf mapping guide.

If you have already subscribed to the Annual 2020, you can download the July issue from your registration page. If not, you can subscribe here.

Well THIS was a challenge. As usual, mapping outside of dungeon mapping gives me a little anxiety, but I dug in a think the end result wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be, and I rather like it. I opted to do the 3d perspective of a castle, as this, I think is the most challenging map to create in this series. We are all pretty used to mapping top-down, so that didn’t seem like it would be useful to as many people as another 3d map in this style would.

Castle Map
(Download the FCW file of the castle.) (See the more info on the Annual “Beaumaris Castle” here.) Continue reading »

This is a great Annual! One of my favorites in the bunch for obvious reasons….it is I, Lorelei, mapper of dungeons and floor plans. For some inspiration for this set of maps, and for many of my floor plans, I searched through my vast files of references online and found one of my favorites…old copies of The Architechural Review. Scanning through the pages of a volume from 1916 I found several floorplans of boarding houses and used them as the basis for Edgar and Shirley Pembroke’s Boarding House….a Cthulhu inspired floor plan.

Pembroke's Boarding House Level 1
(Download the FCW file of Level 1)
Continue reading »

Sci-Fi Base Exterior
Download the CC3+ file here. Note that you need the Annual 2019 installed to view it properly.
Sci-Fi Base - Interior
Download the CC3+ file here. Note that you need the Annual 2019 installed to view it properly.

Mapping with the Sci-Fi Base Annual

Mapping the floorplan of a Sci-Fi Base. Now, THIS was my jam. I finished the exterior map in less than 1.5 hours and then the interior in about 45 minutes or so. I flew through it. Why? Because THIS is what I LOVE about mapping….my mind was flying in 7000 different story arc directions as I was creating this pair of maps 😊

Now….I’d like to first start by saying I just started playing in a Starfinder campaign – although I REALLY wanted to play a Star Trek campaign, I got voted out – but space themed for sure since I can’t get anyone to jump on my Cthulhu bandwagon in my gaming group, but that’s a story for another time (Oooh I sure hope ProFantasy asks me to map the Annual with the Cthulhu city in it..now THAT’S a super fun city map pack). Anyway, I was pretty excited to map this base out.

I started with once again, following the Mapping Guide, since although I’ve had Cosmographer for years, I’ve hardly had a reason to use it, so I felt I needed some guidance with starting out here. Setting up this base was super easy following Ralf’s guide…along the way, as usual, tweaking a few things like adding an RGB Matrix effect to the Whole Drawing just to give everything a little greenish grey look….it IS an alien planet. I also added a sheet SYMBOLS IN DOME – for those symbols I wanted to show under each dome and a LIGHT sheet for the light effect I created for the spotlights.

Other than those simple modifications, and using some symbols in an unorthodox way, I pretty much stuck to the Mapping Guide. I decided to include the Hyperlinks in this map, since the Guide included it, although I usually do not use this for my own maps, though it IS a pretty useful too and quite easy to do.

I’ve said this once and I’ll probably say it like 9 more times before this year of Annuals is up, but read through the provided guides….it can take a bit more time than you planned on putting into a map, but reading through how the creator of the style or program put together their maps is hitting the jackpot of mapping knowledge in my book.

Have some fun experimenting with this Annual. I really had to refrain from using any of the other Cosmographer symbols I have (and for those that KNOW me, know that was VERY difficult, lol) because I really wanted to show this Annual as a standalone, as you do not need Cosmographer to get all these great assets. Now go… create your own Sci-Fi Base and share them on the ProFantasy forums!

About the author: Lorelei was my very first D&D character I created more years back than i’d like to remember. When I decided to venture into creating maps for my and others rpgs, I thought I owed it to her to name myself Lorelei Cartography, since it was her that led me to the wonderful world of tabletop gaming in the first place. Since then I have been honored to have worked with companies such as WizKids, Pelgrane Press, and ProFantasy. You can view some of my work at www.LoreleiCartography.com

Inn at Whisper WoodThe June issue of the Cartographer’s Annual 2020 is now available. Explore five detailed battle maps by Master Mapper Christina Trani, showing the ground floor, upper floor and cellars of the Inn at Whisper Wood, alongside the crossroads it is located at, and the cave its cellar is connected to.

The accompanying 6-page mapping guide teaches how to use grids of any style and size on these or other battle maps, how to print them to scale even on a small home printer, and how to export them to use in a virtual tabletop environment.

If you have already subscribed to the Annual 2020, you can download the June issue from your registration page. If not, you can subscribe here.

In this series, Christina Trani will explore all the different drawing styles available in the Cartographer’s Annuals, starting with Volume 13 (2019).

SUB2019 Worlds of Wonder
Download the CC3+ file here. Note that you need the Annual 2019 installed to view it properly.

Mapping with The Worlds of Wonder Annual

As a digital cartographer, I am not overly fond of overland mapping. I prefer the confines of a floorplan, a dungeon, or I’ll expand my horizons to lovely, little villages. But, occasionally, I am encouraged to map in an overland style. My latest was done in the Worlds of Wonder Annual style. I love it.
Now, since overland mapping gives me anxiety….all the details that geologically accurate minded cartographers have apoplexy over when not done correctly can give me hives, so most often I just “wing it” and to heck with geology – it IS a fantasy world, so why not?

This time ‘round I decided to grab a continent from Fractal Terrains, since my coastlines, in my opinion, are the pits. After generating a landmass I was happy with I exported it to CC3, deleted all the fluff and left myself with a landmass that I copy and pasted into a new map started in the WoW (not Worlds of Warcraft, lol) style. I then began mapping out where my mountains would go….this I did by referring to my original FT map, which shows all the wonderful elevations that I normally have NO idea where to place. I did the same for rivers, to avoid the stress I’d normally have trying to figure out “where they looked best” or “where they should go”. If you don’t have Fractal Terrains, and ARE stressing about your map being geologically accurate, there are a multitude of references out there…but I really recommend just making this fantastical world your own and do what pleases you.

Once my mountains are placed, along with a mountain fill behind them and lakes and rivers, I begin placing my forests. Now, this map has more forests then I normally would place, but that has everything to do with the name… Larothell, The Republic of Songs. So I got the name from one the many online generators I have bookmarked. I use them often as a DM of a homebrew campaign having to constantly come up with original names to people and places, often on the fly. So, the name came up, and I immediately though of elves, glorious elves with a magical world of melody, perhaps that fuels their magic? I don’t know, but I just went with it…and with elves, come forests. I also enjoy mixing shades of greens in my forests, so for this map I mixed the two green trees that came with the annual, but I certainly recommend playing around with the colors and creating your own custom palette.

Of course, naming my cities and towns was easy once I had a theme to my fantasy realm. When labelling cities, towns, key locations, etc. I like to play with different fonts. I have an assortment of hundreds upon hundreds of fonts. Searching some of the free font sites is a great resource – just be sure to note any restrictions on commercial uses as noted by the creators. Along with fonts I am a fan of playing with color of the font and outlines – preferring to having a contrast, usually the map title and the cite labels.

Always remember, stepping out of your comfort zone can produce some amazing work that might even surprise yourself! Go experiment and have fun!

About the author: Lorelei was my very first D&D character I created more years back than i’d like to remember. When I decided to venture into creating maps for my and others rpgs, I thought I owed it to her to name myself Lorelei Cartography, since it was her that led me to the wonderful world of tabletop gaming in the first place. Since then I have been honored to have worked with companies such as WizKids, Pelgrane Press, and ProFantasy. You can view some of my work at www.LoreleiCartography.com

The May issue of the Cartographer’s Annual 2020 has just been released. Glynn Seal of MonkeyBlood Design has created a wonderful new town and city style for us, the Ryecroft Town style. Easy to use for anyone with the latest incorporation of the city tools into CC3+, the Ryecroft Town styles gives you a wonderful new look for your fantasy or medieval towns and cities. As usual the issue comes with a mapping guide, that takes you through creating a whole town using the style on 6 pages.

If you have already subscribed to the Annual 2020, you can download the May issue from your registration page. If not, you can subscribe here.

CA160 Necromancers Sanctum SmallThe April issue of the Cartographer’s Annual 2020 is now available. It includes a new dungeon styles based on ink-and-paper cartography by the likes of Dyson Logos and MonkeyBloodDesign, which allows you to produce simple and effective but also beautiful black and white dungeon layouts. The included 6-page mapping guide takes you through the process of drawing a complete dungeon.

If you have already subscribed to the Annual 2020, you can download the April issue from your registration page. If not, you can subscribe here.

Alexandria-class StarshipThe March issue of the Cartographer’s Annual 2020 is now available. The map pack “Alexandria-class Starship” contains a fully realized space ship, including an exterior view, multiple decks and a description. In addition the Annual issue comes with 186 science fiction/modern bitmap fills and a tutorial on how to import and use these in any map or style of your choice.

If you have already subscribed to the Annual 2020, you can download the March issue from your registration page. If not, you can subscribe here.

Previous Entries