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"Overlays and maps" Topic

5 Posts

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817 hits since 5 Dec 2012
©1994-2018 Bill Armintrout
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forwardmarchstudios05 Dec 2012 3:53 p.m. PST

Hi all,

I had an idea to use some of my left over 08 3mm figs for game pieces to play with on a map board. My idea was to create some sort of basic map on the bottom layer, place overlays of contour lines, roads, rivers, fences and buidings over that and top it off with a piece of plexiglas on which the figs would be placed. I was wondering if anyone had tried something like this before. Specifically how did you create the overlays? The roads and rivers seem easy enough to me but the contour lines I can't quite figure out. I've made a few good ones by hand but I was hoping there might be a way to do them more finely. If I wanted to print them out on clear plastic, like overhead projection sheets, what would be the best way to go about doing this? Is there a program for free on line that'd let me draw them realistically, or would it be easiest just to make them by hand? I'm not planning on making boards much bigger than two 4'x3' boards side by side.


MajorB05 Dec 2012 3:55 p.m. PST

Featherstone did that in "Advanced Wargames" first published in 1969.

emckinney05 Dec 2012 5:56 p.m. PST

You can do Bezier curves in Microsoft PowerPoint to produce excellent topo maps.

Pretty much any vector-based drawing program will allow you to do the same, probably more easily. Inkscape is free and pretty widely used link

If you want to hand-sketch first, try LineTracer to convert your scanned sketches to vector

OSchmidt Inactive Member07 Dec 2012 5:16 a.m. PST

Tried this back in 1973.
Discarded the idea very quickly, and it did not work well.
You have to ensure that you have your registration marks perfect. (Not easy to do) and that you align them perfectly. You also have to make sure the overlays are perfectly aligned, and STAY THAT WAY!. Also as with any scheme like this, you have to leave it set up and that can be a big space waster.

I do all my maps using a Vector Art program called Corel Draw. Rather pricey, rather steep learning curve but worth the effort and very integratable with photo art, bit map etc. I created a complete map for an International Wargame with 12 countries on 64 8 1/2 by 11 sheets (with a half inch border around the map. If I need maps I just print out the copies in full color of the maps I want.

I did this in both road and node method, and point and area method. Also with gridded surface, and geomorphic "plates" and even the fine-arts method I call looking out your front door (where each space or area has small pictures of a scene in the location which blends into the next location like an Escher print or the Talisman board.

Don't stint when you're buying the software for this. It's worth every dime.

LORDGHEE08 Dec 2012 1:35 p.m. PST

The Cartographers Guild is the ssun source on mapping and alot of the are gamers.

the free photshop is Gimp

and the free draw is



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