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PostPosted: Sat May 06, 2006 2:10 am
by Jota
Looks like good progress is being made. My main concern at this point is how many border countries most of these continents have. You've got mountains, but they don't really seem to actually be doing much in terms of separating countries of one continent from the countries of another. I think that Evil Pope's suggestion about making the rivers into impassable borders and adding bridges or fords or the like to represent passages across them is a good one.

PostPosted: Sun May 07, 2006 8:46 am
by MrConfigT
I think having that many open borders would make the game interesting and longer. You couldn't take and hold a cont. untill you had enough armies to protect the boarders.

We'll see what we can come up with in the way of bridges etc...

PostPosted: Sun May 07, 2006 3:00 pm
by Marvaddin
I cant see the last version... its only me?

PostPosted: Sun May 07, 2006 3:15 pm
by ticalien
sry. had a power outage last night, just realized my PC was off

PostPosted: Sun May 07, 2006 7:22 pm
by MrConfigT
There's an alternate link to the map

PostPosted: Mon May 08, 2006 12:07 am
by ticalien
Version with boundries and bridges..

-Added legend detailing impassable objects.
-Created bridges within countries.
-Re-sized connection points.


PostPosted: Mon May 08, 2006 12:17 am
by MrConfigT
looks good dude

PostPosted: Mon May 08, 2006 12:19 am
by HighBorn
the walls need to be made a little darker

PostPosted: Mon May 08, 2006 12:34 am
by Hoff
Maybe make the rivers a bit thicker to make it more obvious that they are impassable.

PostPosted: Mon May 08, 2006 1:33 am
by Jota
The rivers look nice, but I'm not sure they're really solving the problem. For example, in Rohan: Tharbad, Eregion, Lorien, Wold, Westfold, and Andrast are still all borders. Only Dunland and Enedwaith aren't.

PostPosted: Mon May 08, 2006 9:18 am
by ticalien
I took a quick tally and here's the synopsis:

Eriador: 4 Total
The Shire

Gondor = 4 Total
South Gondor

Lindon = 3 Total

Mordor = 2 Total
Far Harad
Near Harad

Rohan = 6 Total

Rhovanion = 4 Total
Emyn Muil
Ered Lithui

Ruhn = 2 Total
Lake of Ruhn

These all seem like pretty reasonable numbers to me. With the realignment of rivers and borders, the bonuses will likely need to be adjusted, but I don't see a reason to modify the maps araingment at this point. It's based off the middle earth maps and takes into account actual bridges and topographical information. Creating additional pathways or unnecessary borders takes away from the authenticity of the map IMO.

I'm open to more suggestions.

PostPosted: Mon May 08, 2006 10:29 am
by MrConfigT
What it seems like to me is that all these suggestions are towards making map that we already have on a different picture. I think this is a great looking map and that will be challanging. It is mostly corect according to tolkien, and if there's a contenient with all boarders, then so be it, don't try and take it first :) If you look, you can eaisly cut down borders on the edge contentients by taking one country further.

Maybe lack can allow a test game with this map that ticalien and I can play to see if we see any obvious shortcommings.

PostPosted: Mon May 08, 2006 6:21 pm
by AndyDufresne
Well by request, lets see...

~~Visual Appeal~~

---The legend is always a good place to start. As it currently is, it could use a little more appeal. It seems like a rather bland slab or slate that was simply used for a quick legend. Perhaps adding an elegant border, some sort of crest thing on the top maybe, perhaps some more visuals from the book's work, etc. Also Gondor and Ruhn are somewhat similar in color the legend, look into making a stronger difference.

---As for the map, I particularly like the ocean and the internal lakes. Some of the little streams I see are used as borders (though passable), but some are not (I.E. Lake Evendim). This could create a little confusion, but I think everyone will generally catch on after a quick glance and logical thought. The impassable river borders are alright. I feel though they are simply blue lines spilling over, and not much like a river. I am not sure what more can be done, perhaps tones and shades here, so every river is not the same.

---The bridges definitely could use some work in the art department. I see that you attempted to make them similar in feel to the one way arrow pass, but I'm not sure that the dumbell bridges harmonize with the map currently. I suggest looking into some sort of visual representation for the bridges toward the mainland center (though obviously the sea routes would stay similar to as they are now, which could work due to the smaller numbers.)

---The font was quite an excellent choice I think. It is much more appealing than the standard Times New Roman and Arial fonts. I think the font helps add that little extra thing to the visual factor.

---That said, it feels like 3 of your continents have a texture, and the other 4 do not. Red, Purple, and Brown each have their distinct qualitative traits. But Green, Yellow, Blue, and Orange seem to be lacking (though I see a subtle hint of one perhaps in Orange). I suggest perhaps making them uniform in texture (But not the same texture obviously.) It seems odd to have a few with texture, and a few that seem like painted glass.

---And while talking about continents, I rather dislike some of the borders. They seem to be of a thought process that said "Well a swoop here...little jag here...small point here, double mountain peak jag here..." The seem rather bland. But I do not know if this is how the borders are actually represented from the source material, or if this is your own doing. I know you wouldn't want to mess with the borders much, but South Gondor for instance has a neat border. As does Harlindon, and many of the other blue countries. Anfalas is alright, Andrast, etc. But a few countries in green, yellow, red, and brown seem to have rather uncreative and unappealing borders.

---The colors were pretty good choices. Though I've a gripe that they are almost too strong and bright. Perhaps a bit of darkness would help alleviate the blinding aspect of the map as it is. More tones and subtle variations would benefit from this map I think.

---And now to the wretched mountains. I am personally not a fan of the mountains. They seem almost out of place, being black and gray. They don't quite mesh with the visuals on the map, and seem to stick out as if protruding from the map. I see that you have done a few things to make it seem less like repeated patterns (I.E. flattening and resizing them.) I think that aspect is something that helps in that department, but perhaps looking to some other color adding to the mountains, or maybe a different visual design of them, or a collection of various mountain images. Just a few routes to look into.

---I've said it before, and I'll say it again. I absolutely hate the use of white circles. It looks more like a random kindergartner got hold of the teacher's paper hole punch and wreaked havoc on your map. A gray tone I've always been fond of, but if you are a stickler for the white they can stay, but I feel it adds to the problem of the map being blinding bright, and detracts from the overall color ratios. Also, I think Tolfalas could benefit from moving the circle to the side of it, in the ocean. Then you can actually see the island you are conquering, rather than just the circle. (Psst, it looks like all the circles have their respective colors surrounding the white area, except for orange, it seems to have a darker black. Just something to point out.)

---While doing the analysis I've noticed a few things that might cause confusion on the map. Can Enedwaith attack Minhiriath? It looks like the river doesn't extend down to the ocean. Also for example can The Shire attack Belegost--same idea. Dorwinon-Iron Hills. Throw in an adjustment at Harlindon-Minhiriath just to make it more clear they can't attack. Quick fixes there.


~~~Nitty Gritty~~~

---Eriador~~ 7 Countries; 4 Borders; 6 Attack routes. 5 almost seems a little low due to the large number of borders and medium number of countries. But I see that you can limit your borders down to one less, by taking over a few purples so that is a nice plus. Perhaps a 6, 5 isn't so bad.

---Gondor~~ 5 Countries; 4 Borders; 6 Attack routes. This currently seems quite unbalanced, for only a bonus of 4! I think the Tolfalas connection to Far Harad isn't needed per se, it seems to be reiterating something South Gondor can already do. And a connection link to Tolfalas to Anfalas (even though they are in the same country) isn't really needed either. Taking out the Tolfalas gives you 3 borders, which seems more reasonable for such a small continent, but still quite high. Having 3 borders would be ideal for a bonus of 4, maybe leaning more toward 5.

---Lindon~~ 4 Countries; 3 Borders; 3 Attack routes. This continent, even for its size, is in a minature chaos. Such a little continent, for a bonus of 2 but three borders! This seems out of proportion. Perhaps cutting off Fordlindon from Angmar, but keeping the routes between Forochel and Angmar would help alleviate the problem there. That would knock it down to 2 borders for a bonus of 2, similar to say S.A.

---Mordor~~ 5 Countries; 2 Borders; 3 Attack routes (though 2 if you take out the Tolfalas-Far Harad connection). This is a nice little continent. Essentially it similar to Lindon, but it has extra strategic value due to the one way pass. A value of 2 seems fine.

---Rohan~~ 8 Countries; 6 Borders; 5 Attack routes. Currently in a larger chaos than little Lindon. 6 Borders is nearly unreasonable, though it does have a little saving grace that it can take Lebennin to limit the borders down to 5. But even then I think a value of 7 seems too low. Perhaps an 8 due to the border to country ratio. If you really wanted to limit the borders down to normal 5 (without having to take over extra countries), I'd get rid of the Westfold-Lebennin connection buy extending the mountains out. That could help the chaos problem that is currently stewing in Rohan.

---Rhovanion~~ 6 Countries; 4 Borders; 4 Attack routes. This is an interesting medium continent. It's at an obvious disadvantage due to the one way attack, but that isn't necessarily a bad thing. It doesn't look like much can be done about borders. 4 borders for 6 countries is quite high. If you wanted to look into eliminating 1 border, I'd extend Dagorland so it would touch South Gondor, freeing up Emyn Muil. If that is done, a value of 5 seems alright, though 6 could still be argued. If that area isn't pursued, 6 could work as a bonus value, but I'm not liking it very well.

---Ruhn~~ 5 Countries; 2 Borders; 4 Attack routes. This country is essentially the same as Mordor and Lindon. So they should have the same values (though you could make an argument to make Mordor 3, and the others 2, due to the strategic value of the one way pass). Keep this continent similar to the other near identical ones.


I assume the 40 countries was deliberate. That makes for good 5 and 4 player games.

Overall this is quite an interesting map, but I think it still could use some work in all areas to improve the appeal, playability, and constancy as a map.


PostPosted: Mon May 08, 2006 8:24 pm
by MrConfigT
^ that is excellent input..

how do you ever play the middle east or brazil maps?

PostPosted: Mon May 08, 2006 8:44 pm
by AndyDufresne
Simple...I haven't. ;)


PostPosted: Mon May 08, 2006 10:30 pm
by ticalien
Thanks for the input Andy, it helps a ton! Here's a quick reply to each section:

- Legend = Just what you said a quick fix, it'll be addressed in the final release.

- Rivers - I'll play around with the rivers a bit. I've tried a few looks, but nothing I've tried has really fit. I'm not sure I follow you about the Lake Evendim thing, it seems pretty obvious to me?

- Bridges - A quick fix as well. I'll have to play around with some looks and see what I can turn up. They'll be addressed in the next release.

- Font - Thanks! I also think the font looks good. As any graphics person knows, the font makes the project.

- Textures - I can try a few looks, perhaps masking some textures into the map. I'll see what can be done in the next release.

- Borders - The borders are a mix of as you say kinda a ho..hum.. approach, while some I spent more time to give it some more feel. Personally, I don't think this matters too much however once the countries are finalized etc. I can create some more creative paths.

- Colors - I know, it's blaring. I may go with more of a pastel theme and see what happens.

- Mountians - How do you really feel?
:shock: LOL. I agree they don't look super, but I didn't think they were that bad... They looked good on the huge version of the map I made, but once I shrunk it down they lost a lot of there qualties. I'll have to play around and see what I can put together.

- Circles - I kinda agree. I'll update them in the next version and look for some more input.

- River Issue - Just an oversight on my part. Will be easily corrected in next version.

Nitty Gritty

First allow me to state that MrConfigT and I didn't put a lot of thought in about the bonues. We hoped that some of the "pros" could help us out a little with this and we'd go from there (thus, the temp legend). That said, your input is extremly valuable. Here are some of my thoughts:

Eriador - Yeah, I thought 6 too. We'll see how the rest of the map comes together and adjust accordingly.

Gondor - I've removed the links from Anfalas to Tolfalas and Tolfalas to Far Harad. In the process an attack routes was removed. I'd agree 5 would be a good bonus, espically since holding S. Gondor from Mordor will be a constant battle.

Lindon - I think I'd prefer to move the bonus to 3 than close Fordlindon to Angmar. Personally, I like that there's not any give me countinents in the map.

Mordor - As stated above I removed the Tolfalas to Far Harad connection, so that makes the 2 more reasonable. With the closed access the bonus needs to be smaller, but having 5 countries makes it a little tougher to grab hold of.

Rohan - Closing Westfold off and keeping the bonus at 7 sounds like a good plan. That would leave the attack points at 5 and create a key access point on the map.

Rhovanion - I like the way this country lays out despite the border to counrty ratio you mention. Perhaps upping the bonus to 6 would make it more reasonable?

Ruhn - Duely noted.

40 Countries was semi-deliberate, I was thinking 40 or 42. 40 just seemed to fit better.

Thanks again for your input, it will go along way towards making this a great map. We'll take all of your comments and apply them in one way or another.

PostPosted: Tue May 09, 2006 11:44 am
by thegrimsleeper
Your font DOES look good... But I think it could look better.

PostPosted: Tue May 09, 2006 3:53 pm
by MrConfigT
^ good find!

Sorry to Interrupt But....

PostPosted: Sat May 13, 2006 10:10 am
by Truman
Can't we use the original map that Parker Brothers made?

I could figure out the legal stuff and ask permission to use it here. I'm sure they won't mind.

...I hope that doesn't completely ruin your time and effort into making your map. :shock:


PostPosted: Sat May 13, 2006 10:20 am
by tomatoman25
I kinda agree with Truman. Your map is starting to look really awesome. but for me at least, the whole wavvy, roundedness of the whole thing is sort of a turn off. Not quite realistic for me, makes it look more childish. I'm not saying go find and use the original Middle Earth board (though that would be cool). But at least try and make it a little bit more pointed or jagged, create more of a sense of reality with it.

PostPosted: Sat May 13, 2006 12:46 pm
by Marvaddin
Ticalien, as you asked for my help, here I go... First thing to say, I think this map can be a very good one.

But really 40 countries and 7 continents... I would like more with 42 countries, maybe even 45. Mordor and Ruhn are great places to some new countries, even why I believe Mordor should be a powerful continent, so Sauron armies could raze all other places :wink:

Let me see... this way we have 4 small continents (4-5 countries), 2 medium (6-7), 1 large (8-9)... I would like at least one gigantic continent... maybe we could have even 48 countries, but its not really necessary.

Lindon: small classic continent... but cant have 3 borders, as Andy said. Block Fordlindon to Angmar. And make clearer that Belegost and the Shire cant attack each other. Bonus 2.

Eriador: 7 countries, it cant have a bonus of 5 or 6. Better way is reduce borders. Fordlindon to Angmar already, now remove Trollshaws to Eregion. And make clearer that Harlindon and Minhiriath dont touch each other. Bonus 4.

Ruhn: I would increase the number of countries to 8 here. To dont make it a very easy continent to defend, the best would be add a route between Mirkwood and Erebor. Maybe you could also allow attacks between Lorien and Fodorowaith. With the changes, bonus of 4.

Rohan: 8 countries already, maybe splitting Wold we could have here our larger continent... Removing some borders: Eregion (as I said already) and Westfold (only place some more mountains). Bonus 5.

Rovhanion: Wilderland is a good place for another country if you want 48... if you dont want, well, I believe you should split it anyway and remove Emyn Muil, so only 3 borders. Remove the one way, too, or Mordor will be a very very easy place with only one border after taking South Gondor. Bonus 3.

Gondor: only remove that Far Harad - Tolfalas route. Bonus 3.

Mordor: at least one more country. Remove the one-way, replace for a normal route. Bonus of 3.

I like the graphics. After these mods your map will be much more balanced. I was working with 45 countries, because I believe is a minimum to have 7 continents... so one more in Mordor and Rohan, 3 more in Ruhn is my first suggestion, although you can switch Mordor and Ruhn about this.

PostPosted: Sat May 13, 2006 2:11 pm
by Evil Pope
I think it wouldn't be difficult to add another country to Mordor.. Ithink you could add the sea of Nurnen, or If you could somehow squeeze in the Udun Vale.. Or I think that Near Harad could be split into Near Harad and Khand..
As for Rhun, i'm not sure you could easily add any more countries.. The only things I could think to do would be to maybe take southern part of Forodwaith and make it into Mount Gundabad.. Maybe take the section above the mountains(above Erebor) and make it into the Ered Mithrin.. I don't know whether or not this will work but, maybe you cound take a section along the river between Erebor and Mirkwood, and make it Esgaroth.. And Marv mentioned adding a route between Mirkwood and Erebor, you could then make a route between Esgaroth and Mirkwood instead..

I don't have any more suggestions for adding more countries.. However, I think that the Lake of Rhun should be the Sea of Rhun..

PostPosted: Sat May 13, 2006 4:08 pm
by Truman
I really don't think any of this mapm making is that necessary, since the original map would do fine.

I'm working on the map of middle earth, which is the one that hasbro made. I'm removing all the sites of power, all the fellowship landmarks, and the yellow dotted line that marked where the fellowship went. Once I'm finished with all the editing and a little bit of the adding, I'm going to contact Hasbro and ask permission to use and edit their middle earth Risk map on this site.

That's what I've got planned for now, but since ticalien has and is going through a lot of trouble to make his version, I've decided that with my finished product, with permission included, I'll let the people decide: my map, or ticalien's map.

The thing is, both choices will be hard, because each side has its drawbacks, and its strengths. My map would be the actual Hasbro map which looks realistic, and has about 60 countries instead of only 40. On the other hand, ticalien's map has work and effort put into it, as well as a few new countries added, and is easier to play than the Hasbro version.

So when I finally finish, the people will decide who's map they want.


PostPosted: Sat May 13, 2006 4:46 pm
by Evil Pope
Truman, I don't think you should use hasbro's map.. Even with their premission.. Ticalien has put alot of work(I'm sure) into this map. I think its rude that you're trying to take over his project.. If he(for some reason) decides to give up(which he shouldn't, because the map is great in my oppinion), then you should give the map a go.. But not while he's still working hard on it.. And if we were to vote on maps(which we shouldn't, in my oppinion), I'd vote for Ticalien(and i'd hope others would as well) for having some sort of originality(and putting in alot of work), rather than just ripping off another map(altough I guess the fact that the map isn't an original takes away some of the originality(but that doesn't really matter))..
So if you want to continue working on your(or hasbro's) map, then do so(because i'm sure plenty of people will dissagree with me), but i'm not in favor of it(as you can see from the rest of the post).

PostPosted: Sat May 13, 2006 5:10 pm
by Truman
Actually, I think you're absolutely right. He has put a lot of work into it. Actually I was planning on making the middle earth map before I found out others were trying to.

To give my opinion on his map, he should put more coding into it. In other words, he should add lines of contour to each country so it'll look even more real (best way to do this is Adobe Photoshop, which is how I'm doing my map).

I'll continue to work on the map I started, just in case anything happens in the future. But yes, I thought about what you said and you're right.

However, I am not ripping off Hasbro's map. I am simply doing what I'm sure many others would have thought of doing before, except they didn't want to go through the time to contact Hasbro.

EDIT: My map can't really be considered their's since I'm taking away the basic foundation of their version of the game. All the add-ons are being removed to make it a purely "regular Risk map" with the exceptions that it isn't my artwork, and it's a map of middle earth.