Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Map of the Kingdoms

Maps – terribly useful things for getting from one place to another. Unless this wargames campaign is to consist of a lot of bored officers sitting about in barracks, we’ll need to get some means of going from one place to another.

(As an aside, I don’t think that’s too much of an exaggeration. From reading Duffy’s books and his coverage of officers, it seems that if you joined a regiment in the 18th century you faced a life of crippling boredom with only alcohol, gambling, potentially lethal feuds and (also potentially lethal) prostitutes. War, even with it's risks, must have seemed like a genuine release.)

So, to Aschenbach and Luftberg. I’m sure that I could do this on MS Paint or something similar, but trying to draw with a mouse sends me round the bend. Here’s the scanned version, drawn with a pen and then scanned (hopefully large enough to make out, but I'll retry if it's not.)

I’m generally happy with it, although I think I might have gone a bit too far with the stylised cities looking too ‘vertical’ - stacked like a layer cake. Oh well… The two states are divided by the main river (an overlooked stretch of the Rhine, we’ll say) with Aschenbach to the west & south and Luftberg in the east & north. The areas to the north and south are semi-autonomous provinces, to give us some detachable chunks that each side can barter with in peace negotiations.

In Aschenbach’s case, the family of v. Kleintrink’s hereditary lands are the southern quarter – excluding the free city (Freistadt, in my pidgin-German) of Krumper, which as the name suggests will be treated as integral to Aschenbach’s ruling house. As geographical integrity never slowed down historical land-grabbing and province-collecting, this is no big headache for anybody other than Aschenbach’s customs and excise men.

The family v. Zaub are located almost in the exact centre of the map, around the town of Flussburg near the Rhine’s western bank. This puts them square in the middle (like the filling in a sandwich made with two slices of angry bread, if you like surreal metaphors.) All this should guarantee that nobody has a quiet little corner where they can sit our wars untouched – exactly as we want.

To take an overview, each nation has a capital city (Hirschburg for Aschenbach), two secondary cities, a fortress, and six towns. I was originally intending to make the map a straight ‘nodal’ affair, similar to the campaign system detailed in the excellent DBA rules set. However, every time I try to draw a nodal map it goes wrong – I keep on joining points up with roads to their nearest neighbours, so the whole thing turns into a web of triangles and becomes unusable. As none of my campaigns have ever been set in countries with well-integrated transport networks, it’s a bit of a weakness. However, there’s never a reason to turn away a good idea, and the DBA campaign rules have a lot to recommend them. There’s virtually no book-keeping, and they’re intended for use with small-scale armies.

I’ll leave the details of recruitment for my next post, along with the rest I’ve promised (the Luftberger army, some details on battle rules, figures details, etc.) To all those who have left kind comments, can I just say – thank you! I do read them all, and shall try to respond with articles to any queries.


tradgardmastare said...

What a lovely map- hand drawn I imagine! I look forward to reading more....
I will now be even better equipped to imagine your country now.

Bluebear Jeff said...

I don't understand why your map doesn't "expand" to a larger map . . . most graphics do.

I wish that it did because my old eyes can't make out the details although they look like they're interesting.

-- Jeff

Stokes Schwartz said...

I agree, a very nice looking map. Computer programs are sometimes best for certain things, but for others, like campaign maps, I think good old pen and paper are best. Well done!

Best Regards,


Fitz-Badger said...

Very nice hand-drawn map! I only wish I could see it in a bit more detail (same goes the pictures of your miniatures).
(typo in title - should be "kingdoms")

Fitz-Badger said...

(typo in my comment! should be "same goes for the pictures"!) lol

CWT said...


"D'oh!" for the pair of us! I don't suppose anybody knows how to edit a post for typos, do they?

I'm a bit disappointed with the map resolution, which looks great on the actual scan. I'll try again soon with some close-ups on certain areas, to help people out.

Bluebear Jeff said...

To edit . . .

Click on orange "B" button (top left) to go to your "Dashboard".

To the right of "New Post" you should see "Manage: Posts, Settings, Layout".

Click on Posts and there you are. Now click on the Post that you want to edit. Make your edits and then "Post" it.

I'm not sure why your map doesn't link to a larger version of it. Did you use the "Add Image" icon? (It is near the right hand end of the icons above your post box).

I hope that this helps.

-- Jeff

Fitz-Badger said...

I don't know why it happens, but sometimes when I add pictures to my blog they are expandable and other times not.
I usually have to go to the html view in the post editing window and copy the code from one of the pictures that does expand.
It should start with a "less than" sign, folwed by a href and end with another "less than" sign, follwed by a forward slash, small "a" and "greater than" sign. There's a bit more html code in there to make it work.

If you're still having trouble you could try creating a post with just a picture (make sure it's a picture that is plenty big so it has room to expand) and e-mail me the code from the post's html edit window (copy the html text from the window and paste into Notepad for a textfile). Then I can try editing it to work and send it back to you to paste in and try out. (or maybe someone from Google could help you if you prefer)

tidders said...

Now thats a really nice map !

-- Allan