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Ukraine v5

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Ukraine v5

Postby Minister X on Wed Aug 12, 2020 11:32 pm

Map Name: Ukraine
Mapmaker(s): Minister X
Number of Territories:25
Special Features: none
What Makes This Map Worthy of Being Made: Ukraine is the largest European country not yet mapped at CC. It's a world hotspot and I've referenced that by calling one bonus region "Occupied" and another "Contested". The bonus regions on this map run from 3 to 5 terts, none larger or smaller, and that's unusual. At 25 total terts only seven maps at CC would be smaller and small maps are quite popular, especially for newbies.

Image

As shown here, the map is just 600 x 432 pixels... a small map for a small map. I've made few small versions of my maps but I know that's always a challenge so I wanted to start with the small one this time, thus allowing myself some freedom when making the large one instead of struggling to make a large one smaller.

The actual names of the terts run up to 14 letters long and a surprising number of them are unpronouncable without much practice, so to save space and make it easier on players I've employed many abbreviations. On the large map I'll do the same but provide a key to the full names. "Dnipropetrovsk" or "Khmelnytskyi" ain't fitting inside no tert no how.

Would it be possible for this map to start with just one neutral for a 2- 3- or 4-player game, none for a 5-player, and so on, keeping the number of neutrals to a minimum? Or should there always be at least one neutral in each bonus region?

When I first conceived of this map I got a brilliant idea: make Chernobyl a tert out of the north bit of Kiev, make holding it a requirement for getting that bonus region, but whoever is in there loses one troop per turn. I could decorate the tert with a skull-and-bones and/or a nuke symbol like this: Image
Wouldn't that be cool? But Ukraine offers something to the CC cartographer that almost no other country does: the 25 oblasts are all more or less the same size. I'm thus able to map them exactly. To ruin that by creating one artificial tert seemed like a desecration. Also, including Chernobyl, which was the fault of the USSR, not modern Ukraine, would be a bit insulting to a country that has enough problems. Also, subtracting one from that tert would be counteracted by getting the bonus. It would almost always be the last tert taken for that bonus. So it doesn't really work as a penalty. Alternately, it could always start out as a neutral with a larger-than-usual number of troops. That might work and I could still use the cool graphics. So, pluses and minuses. Still... that idea about Chernobyl as a death zone is pretty cool. So I ask you... should this map have 26 terts instead of 25? Let's take a vote.

The Oblasts are accurate but the path of the Dnieper River is only approximate. It runs through the insides of several oblasts. Darn those Ukrainians! Why couldn't they make the river always the border between Oblasts? I chose to do so. So the river's a bit different than reality, but not by all that much.

I also ask for input regarding bonus amounts. I've used X's in the inset at this point. Also bridge placement. Playtest would be the real test but any complaints about the number of bridges or where I've put them?

Except for Crimea, the "Contested" region isn't entirely contested -- at least not yet -- but I wanted to highlight the fact that Russia's annexation of Crimea isn't recognized by most other countries. The "Occupied" region comports surprising well with where Russia has advanced in their invasion.

Ukraine's flag is boring. I tried placing their coat of arms in the upper left corner but it just made things look cluttered. Here it is:
Image

Finally: according to Wikipedia, "Kiev is the traditional and historically most commonly used English name for the city. Kyiv is used officially by the city, and it is gaining in frequency in English-language sources." I took all my Oblast names from a map that made them readable (no easy task) and they used "Kiev". I'm open to changing from Kiev to Kyiv is y'all think it would be more up-to-date.

This is a simple, small map - eminently readable. I'd be open to ideas about ways to spruce it up but I would not want to impair readability.
Last edited by Minister X on Thu Aug 13, 2020 10:11 pm, edited 4 times in total.
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Re: Ukraine v2

Postby Minister X on Thu Aug 13, 2020 11:07 am

Improvement to colors and look/feel...

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Re: Ukraine v2

Postby riskllama on Thu Aug 13, 2020 2:38 pm

so this is going to be a contemporary map, then? i do like the yellow & blue in the title... ;) . regarding chernobyl : instead of adding an extra tert for it, why not make all surrounding terts a -1? just a thought...
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Re: Ukraine v3

Postby Minister X on Thu Aug 13, 2020 3:30 pm

Good idea. How's this look as a first try:

Image

If we go with this I'd increase vertical dimensions so it wasn't quite so cramped up there.

How exactly would it work with neutrals and if troop count is just one? Should all three zones start neutral 3?
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Re: Ukraine v3

Postby riskllama on Thu Aug 13, 2020 3:53 pm

yeah, that's kindasorta what i envisioned, but what about a 'transparent" nuke symbol that covers the radiation zone instead of the red? not sure how the -1 would work best, tbh - but i would think it would eventually drop back to a single neutral troop. perhaps increasing the overall bonus to the affected regional bonuses to compensate?
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Re: Ukraine v3

Postby Minister X on Thu Aug 13, 2020 4:14 pm

I'll experiment with the large nuke symbol but transparency will be problematic because of the colors. If nothing else seems better I think this is not bad as is.

Yes, the bonuses would have to be upped to compensate. That's going to be tricky in Volhynia since two terts there are in the red zone. Maybe I should shift it so only Kiev and Chernihiv are affected??
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Re: Ukraine v3

Postby HitRed on Thu Aug 13, 2020 4:15 pm

I would show a reactor tower. More cool.

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Re: Ukraine v3

Postby riskllama on Thu Aug 13, 2020 4:29 pm

a "reactor" tower isn't necessarily a bad thing, tho. also, not everyone knows what a cooling tower looks like or represents. i think a transparent nuke symbol would be best because everybody knows what it means.
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Re: Ukraine v4

Postby Minister X on Thu Aug 13, 2020 4:51 pm

Several changes: increased vertical dimensions a bit and rearranged the title, etc.; altered nuke graphics; added "Bonuses" next to the inset; removed the coat of arms (no room now); changed blue bonus name from "Siveria" to "Under Threat" to emphasize the theme of the map a bit more; minor text changes.

Better? Maybe. The red blob was rather eye-catching, though.

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Re: Ukraine v4

Postby HitRed on Thu Aug 13, 2020 4:54 pm

For a more ominous look turn the yellow part of the nuclear symbol red.

On a technical note the only reason players would think Zapo connects to Crimea is the little barrier reefs that connect at the little dot island. I would remove them and remove the text.
Last edited by HitRed on Thu Aug 13, 2020 5:13 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Ukraine v4

Postby ZaBeast on Thu Aug 13, 2020 5:10 pm

I liked the red nuclear symbol better.
Not sure how I feel about the colors of the terts in the bonuses being a different shade each. It's not necessary given the borders and it makes opposite bonuses have fairly similar colors but it does look good.
Don't make it 24 starting terts for 1v1 though. 12 terts per player just gives even more an edge to the first player
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Re: Ukraine v4

Postby riskllama on Thu Aug 13, 2020 5:30 pm

ZaBeast wrote:I liked the red nuclear symbol better.


yeah, but a transparent nuke symbol would likely look a lot better...*shrugs*. still early days, tho.
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Re: Ukraine v4

Postby Minister X on Thu Aug 13, 2020 5:46 pm

That nuclear symbol (yellow and black) is a standard one. I took a look at it with red and it is striking but the yellow matches the yellow shadow under "Ukraine". I could go either way. Let's leave that matter until later.

Your Crimea idea makes sense and then I can move the "Map by..." text into the vacated space lower right, making things lower left less cluttered.

"12 terts per player just gives even more an edge to the first player." Excellent point. That was before the Chernobyl stuff was added, though. Now with those two terts starting neutral it would have to be (at most) 11 terts each for a 1v1. But even then your point still has relevance since it would be too easy to get to 12 quickly with luck. So I'm guessing we'd need more neutrals. Such matters would, ideally, be addressed during play-test if we get that far.

Colors: I think the bonus region distinctions are obvious enough, especially with the inset as a guide. But in a more general sense I'm quite willing to reconsider tert/bonus coloring entirely. This pastel scheme isn't really suited to the map's theme or especially lovely, at least to my eye. It's main assert is that it's easy to read everything and navigate. I don't want to adopt an antique look since the theme is current-day. I just can't think of anything better right now. I'm going to peruse all the CC maps looking for a color scheme I can rip off. There must be something better out there! :D
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Re: Ukraine v4

Postby Minister X on Thu Aug 13, 2020 5:55 pm

Take a look at the Luxembourg and Charleston maps. Also Cyprus and Ireland. And Japan. I think all these maps are visually superb. Which one might best be mimicked for Ukraine? (Of course I wouldn't copy exactly. I may be a thief but I still have a touch of integrity.)
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Re: Ukraine v4

Postby riskllama on Thu Aug 13, 2020 6:18 pm

out of the maps you listed, i prefer the look of Japan & Cyprus best. given that the ukrainian flag is basically a blue bar on top of a yellow bar, perhaps you could incorporate that motif into the map itself? eg. northern sections would be blue, whereas the southern sections would be yellow. perhaps the 'contested' areas could be coloured red? still really liking the transparent/translucent nuke symbol for the radioactive zone around chernobyl on this...;)
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Re: Ukraine v5

Postby Minister X on Thu Aug 13, 2020 10:11 pm

Here's a remake, inspired by several of those other maps, employing the blue/yellow scheme. I think it's a HUGE improvement.

Image

And I tried red instead of yellow in the nuke symbols - very eye-catching but very discordant and disruptive of the color scheme.
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Re: Ukraine v5

Postby riskllama on Thu Aug 13, 2020 10:15 pm

lol, you don't think an occupying force/warzone in your homeland would be a bit discordant and/or disruptive??? ;)

all kidding aside, the map looks pretty danged good, MinX...*polite clapping*
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Re: Ukraine v5

Postby Minister X on Thu Aug 13, 2020 10:58 pm

:D Should I have "Little Green Men" marching into the map from the east?

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Re: Ukraine v5

Postby riskllama on Thu Aug 13, 2020 11:00 pm

hahaha, yeah maybe not. map looks great, tho... =D>. what would it look like if the easternmost region was yellow, i wonder...
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Re: Ukraine v5

Postby Minister X on Thu Aug 13, 2020 11:31 pm

I've just made another change which will appear with the next version: I've changed the name to "Ukraine 2020". The situation there has been somewhat static for several years but could change at any time. What if the Russians advance or leave? What if the east decides in a plebiscite to join Russia and that becomes recognized by the international community (led by a certain U.S. president who'd do anything for Putin)? Therefore, to avoid the possibility of the map becoming anachronistic at some point, the addition of the year to the name.

And I've made that eastern region called "Occupied" halfway toward yellow, halfway as requested. ;-)
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Re: Ukraine v5

Postby HitRed on Fri Aug 14, 2020 8:51 am

Minister X wrote::D Should I have "Little Green Men" marching into the map from the east?



Putin on a horse of course
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Re: Ukraine v5

Postby Vlasov on Tue Oct 20, 2020 4:49 am

Nice map idea! But when will it show the regional bonus amounts?

I don't think Kiev should be in the death zone. After all, the Chernobyl event was 34 years ago, and Kiev is now a modern capital city of 3 million people.

Also maybe you could call it "Kyiv" (its romanized Ukrainian name).
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Re: Ukraine v5

Postby Minister X on Tue Oct 20, 2020 8:50 am

The "Kiev" of the map is a region, not a city. The disaster site happens to be in this region, up near the border (and near the river), while the city of Kyiv is pretty far south in that region. The other region, "Chern" is actually "Chernihiv", not Chernobyl. This is, admittedly, confusing, but to make Chern the death zone and not Kiev would be inaccurate. Think of it this way: Kiev is a death zone because occupying it means having to have SOME troops too close to Chernobyl.

As for Kiev/Kyiv: please see the penultimate paragraph of my very first post.
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Re: Ukraine v5

Postby Vlasov on Wed Oct 21, 2020 5:45 am

Okay. That makes sense. I should've read your first post more carefully.

In case you're interested, there's another small "Risk"-type site that has a Ukraine map... along with maps of Syria, Afghanistan, Libya, Iran, and other nations. Unfortunately that site is very slow.
Here it is: http://victorsunited.com/Map/List
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