Alex Schroeder @ 2019-06-17 09:21:56
I am amazed that you can take a hex map key and basically just force it into a grid layout and the map appears to be just as usable! It felt like magic when I looked at the result. I'm sure there is some theoretical explanation using maths and graph theory and all that, but on a gut level, here I am generating a map assuming each "region" has six neighbours (a hex map), determining where the rivers go, where forests go and all that, and then I'm drawing it in a grid where each "region" has four neighbours and it still basically works. 😲 https://alexschroeder.ch/wiki/2019-06-17_Text_Mapper_with_Squares
Roger Giner-Sorolla @ 2019-06-17 21:05:37
Really, hexes just make it so you can't cheat by going diagonal. A square grid where every other column is staggered half a square, also, is topologically a hex map.
A. Miles Davis @ 2019-06-18 04:56:25
hex grids only have more connection points if you don't consider diagonal to be legit. I've honestly never understood the love for hex when you've got Lat & Long.
Alistair Langsford @ 2019-06-18 05:02:52
Yes. A square grid has 8 adjacent squares to move to, at least in all my gaming experience.
Alex Schroeder @ 2019-06-18 05:03:23
Yeah, the amazement I felt yesterday was due to the fact that the geography was generated based on six neighbors per region and still looking good enough with four neighbors per region. I was only able to spot resulting problems after staring st it for a while: https://alexschroeder.ch/wiki/Image_4_for_2019-06-17_Text_Mapper_with_Squares Examples: - the river that flows from 1204–1105 now makes a detour through the mountains of 1104 - the river U-turns like at 1808 and elsewhere - swamps disrupted like 0102–0201 and elsewhere As for the general argument of “cheating” clearly hexes are just marginally better with 60° vs 90°. On a square grid map people will say that it’s weird how moving from 0101 to 0202 isn’t possible but you can move via 0102 or 0201 and both variants are equally long, but you can pose the same question on a hex map.
Alistair Langsford @ 2019-06-18 05:20:34
After some arguments (of a good natured variety) we just used grids in dungeons (whatever game we were playing) and unhexed and mostly ungridded maps otherwise. We just drew where we were or moved to. Now i just have diagrammatic zoned or point crawl type maps.
Alistair Langsford @ 2019-06-18 05:22:36
But after seeing your hexmapper tool and taking part in populating a map made with it i might go back to at least some hexes.
Alex Schroeder @ 2019-06-18 05:32:08
Haha. 😆 Just keep it free form! I have come to a similar conclusion for dungeons: simple grid maps, simple room layouts: trying to wrap our brains around weird dungeon maps is not the game we want to play.
Eric Nieudan @ 2019-06-18 09:43:58
I really like the look of the square maps Alex! Personally, I have no problem with allowing diagonal moves - it always rubbed me the wrong may that hex maps don't allow for proper cardinal directions headings (as said above): Players: we'll head West today. DM: not possible. You can go West-Northwest or West-Southwest. Players: but we're exploring the Great Flats of Nothingness! When we were on the Empty Lake of Hueej, we were able to go West but not North. DM: well, the goddess Hexalign the Ordinatrix has changed the universal rules on this part of the world. I've been mapping in square since I discovered sandboxigons: https://blueboxerrebellion.blogspot.com/2015/08/sandboxigons-map-template.html
Alex Schroeder @ 2019-06-18 10:51:30
Good reminder of the ruling octagons! I remember seeing that blog post back then. Good times! :) Also, in the situation above where you're "going west" or similar situations, a referee should just pick the region travelled through and not necessarily tell their players. Just keep talking and you'll be spared a discussion about the foundations of mapping, the wargaming roots of our hobby, the problems with diagonal movements in D&D 3, and more. :D
Alistair Langsford @ 2019-06-18 12:47:58
Had never heard of sandboxigons. Good article. Thanks for sharing that.
Eric Nieudan @ 2019-06-18 20:09:11
@Alistair No probs. It's super useful! The guys at Bree-yark did a nice looking template too: http://breeyark.org/mapping-with-sandboxigons/ @Alex I guess if you're not showing the map to the players then it's easier ;)
Alistair Langsford @ 2019-06-30 01:54:10
A stray thought - you could plot the traveller map on a square grid too.
Alex Schroeder @ 2019-07-02 14:47:39
Sure thing! Let’s take this map... https://alexschroeder.ch/wiki/2013-06-27_Text_Mapper_for_Traveller Result... not quite! I guess there is no code to generate the empty squares... https://framapic.org/Vz8CklIYnl5p/3olowNE8nX0N.png
Alistair Langsford @ 2019-07-03 09:09:07
Well, the text mapper version in hexes is actually very nice too. I’m hoping to resurrect my traveller game later this year and hope to surprise my players with decent maps. The square grid version obviously has a few issues 8-) ...but I still like the look of it. It has an exotic look that feels write for a jump space map!
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