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Tabletop Gaming, Models, and Minis => Role-Playing & Adventure Gaming => Topic started by: heruca on March 08, 2017, 02:53:14 PM

Title: New battlemap-creation software on the way
Post by: heruca on March 08, 2017, 02:53:14 PM
Hi folks. I am creating cross-platform map-making software (for Windows and macOS), suitable for creating both print-resolution maps and lower-resolution maps suitable for use with virtual tabletop software. It's called MapForge (http://www.mapforge-software.com/), and it will be sort of a spiritual successor to Dundjinni, but with a greater focus on stitching maps together from pre-existing map tiles and then customizing the resulting map (with additional decorations, etc.) to suit the GM's particular needs.

(http://www.mapforge-software.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/02/MapForge-Interface-Mockup-v2-Menu-1024x614.png)

MapForge should appeal to GMs of face-to-face game sessions and to those using any VTT software, who want to create their own slick-looking battlemaps to visually enrich their RPG sessions (in any genre), but who find existing mapping programs (including image-editing tools such as Gimp and Photoshop) too intimidating/confusing/expensive.

The software will be priced to be very accessible/affordable, probably $30 or so, but to help offset that cost, there will be at least 9 free content Add-Ons for it, covering various genres. MapForge will also offer a free level of use, so having a license won't be required to make maps with it.

Version 1.0 of MapForge should be ready to go on sale in July 2017. Shortly after that, MapForge will also have the ability to generate random "dungeon" layouts via Donjon (https://donjon.bin.sh/d20/dungeon/).

I hope you will all take a minute to check out the project, play around with the downloadable prototype, and if you like what you see, tell your GM friends about it.

Thanks!

--Hernan (aka Heruca)
Title: Re: New battlemap-creation software on the way
Post by: bbmike on March 08, 2017, 03:55:16 PM
Wow, that looks really nice!  O0
Title: Re: New battlemap-creation software on the way
Post by: heruca on March 08, 2017, 04:02:21 PM
Thanks! The Kickstarter for it has taken off and far exceeded my expectations. It funded the first day, is now at 400% funding and still has 2 weeks to go. Only 1 Stretch Goal left to unlock.
Title: Re: New battlemap-creation software on the way
Post by: Barthheart on March 08, 2017, 05:21:31 PM
Looks pretty cool!  O0

Will it have hex grid support?
Title: Re: New battlemap-creation software on the way
Post by: MetalDog on March 08, 2017, 05:26:44 PM
You people and your damn hexes.  Next, you'll ask if the counters are going to be clipped or unclipped.  It's D&D, man!


As for the program itself, that looks outstanding!  What value would there be for a DM like me who has a regular group, but no laptop? 
Title: Re: New battlemap-creation software on the way
Post by: bbmike on March 08, 2017, 05:29:57 PM
True, but with a hex grid we could create new battle maps for our board games.  ^-^
Title: Re: New battlemap-creation software on the way
Post by: heruca on March 08, 2017, 05:51:45 PM
What value would there be for a DM like me who has a regular group, but no laptop?
It can generate print resolution maps, which you could take to a large-format print service and have it printed out.

Alternatively, there will be a way to cut apart the large image into properly-sized sections that you can print out on a home printer (with support for various paper sizes), then tape back together into a whole map. But home printing can get expensive, and the quality won't be quite the same.

I'm going to see if I can line up some sort of discount with a printing service for users of my software. In which case you would email or upload the map you want printed, and it would be mailed back to you in printed form.
Title: Re: New battlemap-creation software on the way
Post by: heruca on March 08, 2017, 05:55:40 PM
True, but with a hex grid we could create new battle maps for our board games.  ^-^

That is indeed a secondary use I've imagined for the app. Over on BGG, Myth players have gotten excited at the possibilities of creating new custom game tiles. I can also imagine tabletop miniature wargamers printing out huge full-color realistic battlefields, and perhaps even using 3D terrain (trees and such) atop the map.
Title: Re: New battlemap-creation software on the way
Post by: heruca on March 08, 2017, 05:58:55 PM
Will it have hex grid support?
You bet! Perhaps not in v1.0, but soon after.

The overlay part is easy, it's the snap-to-hex functionality that could take longer, especially since some people will want flat-side-up and others pointy-side-up (I believe long grain and short grain are the proper terms).
Title: Re: New battlemap-creation software on the way
Post by: MetalDog on March 08, 2017, 06:39:15 PM
What value would there be for a DM like me who has a regular group, but no laptop?
It can generate print resolution maps, which you could take to a large-format print service and have it printed out.

Alternatively, there will be a way to cut apart the large image into properly-sized sections that you can print out on a home printer (with support for various paper sizes), then tape back together into a whole map. But home printing can get expensive, and the quality won't be quite the same.

I'm going to see if I can line up some sort of discount with a printing service for users of my software. In which case you would email or upload the map you want printed, and it would be mailed back to you in printed form.

Excellent to know!  And thanks for the quick answer :)
Title: Re: New battlemap-creation software on the way
Post by: Barthheart on March 09, 2017, 09:48:01 AM
Will it have hex grid support?
You bet! Perhaps not in v1.0, but soon after.

The overlay part is easy, it's the snap-to-hex functionality that could take longer, especially since some people will want flat-side-up and others pointy-side-up (I believe long grain and short grain are the proper terms).

Cool!  O0
"Flat-side-up or pointy-side-up" is what I use too. Vertical or horizontal is also used. And it seems a small thing to those that don't use hex grids but it is important to be able to do both formats.
Title: Re: New battlemap-creation software on the way
Post by: Barthheart on March 09, 2017, 09:50:21 AM
You people and your damn hexes.  Next, you'll ask if the counters are going to be clipped or unclipped.  It's D&D, man!
...

Shut yer gob you cellar dwelling RPG freak! This program looks perfect for making new proper wargaming maps. Also will be nice for making minis wargaming terrain maps.
Title: Re: New battlemap-creation software on the way
Post by: MetalDog on March 09, 2017, 07:58:25 PM
You people and your damn hexes.  Next, you'll ask if the counters are going to be clipped or unclipped.  It's D&D, man!
...

Shut yer gob you cellar dwelling RPG freak! This program looks perfect for making new proper wargaming maps. Also will be nice for making minis wargaming terrain maps.

I've been a nerdy, RPG playing, reprobate for many years.  And until recently, geeks ain't never been chic.  But you could wait a MILLION years, and wargames won't ever be mainstream.  So, how would you like your new RPG maps, pointy side up?  Or flat?
Title: Re: New battlemap-creation software on the way
Post by: heruca on March 04, 2019, 08:16:05 AM
Egads! It seems I forgot to ever post a follow-up in this thread.

To quickly recap: MapForge (https://www.mapforge-software.com/) was released in March 2018, and has since been updated regularly (v1.0.9 is due out later this week). The initial 50 content Add-Ons were created and delivered, and between those and some additional self-published Add-Ons and many more Add-Ons developed by a subsequent Kickstarter campaign, MapForge now boasts an impressive library of over 70 content Add-Ons (which you can browse here (https://www.mapforge-software.com/store/?orderby=date)), including strong support for the sci-fi genre (Modern Day support is still a little lacking, but I'll get to it eventually). No, the idea is not that you have to spend a fortune to get them all; the idea is that you selectively pick and choose your favorite and most useful content from what's on offer, since everyone has different needs and tastes.

The hexgrid overlay and snap-to-hex features that some folks here were asking about have now been implemented (though hex orientation is currently still limited to "pointy-side-up").

My latest Kickstarter is offering something new. It's the first time content is being offered to enable the creation of area/regional maps (thus far the content has all been strictly for tactical battlemap scale).

Click on the image below to check out this new KS campaign, which ends in 3 weeks.

(http://www.mapforge-software.com/Non-Secure/Images/MapForge_Hex_Tile_Project_Image.png) (https://kck.st/2EcQVOx)

PS: Sorry for the thread necromancy, but this still seems the most appropriate place to post.
Title: Re: New battlemap-creation software on the way
Post by: bbmike on March 05, 2019, 04:38:03 AM
Nice, thanks for posting! I missed MapForge when it released so I'm jumping in on this Kickstarter.  O0
Title: Re: New battlemap-creation software on the way
Post by: heruca on March 06, 2019, 08:01:56 AM
Good to have you on board, bbmike!

Great news: The campaign has just funded. :)

First Stretch Goal announced. (https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/battlegrounds/hex-tile-content-add-ons-for-mapforge-map-making-s/posts/2437463)
Title: Re: New battlemap-creation software on the way
Post by: heruca on May 24, 2019, 05:05:29 AM
Figured I'd post this here, rather than start a new thread.

The MapForge software (http://www.mapforge-software.com/) (which runs on Mac & Windows) was designed to create customized tactical-scale battlemaps for RPGs, and is already supported by an impressive 80+ mapping content Add-Ons (12 of which are free!) covering all major game genres. Maps produced with the software can either be printed for use at the gaming table, or used in virtual tabletop software such as Roll20 or Fantasy Grounds.

But despite the wealth of fantasy mapping content already available, GMs have been clamoring for even more. So we've got some great new content lined up, and are raising funds to cover the porting/development costs.

Click here (https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/battlegrounds/more-fantasy-genre-content-add-ons-for-mapforge-software) or on the image below to check out the latest Kickstarter campaign for MapForge, which just launched two days ago.

(http://www.mapforge-software.com/Non-Secure/Images/MapForge_Fantasy_KS_Project_Image_KS_Badge.png) (https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/battlegrounds/more-fantasy-genre-content-add-ons-for-mapforge-software)

Note that the software itself is already developed and available (though a new version is due out later this month); this crowdfunding campaign is only to fund the development/porting of the new fantasy-genre mapping content.

Some boardgamers and wargamers were quick to catch on that the software can also be used to produce custom game boards or tiles for games such as Myth, Descent, HeroQuest, Aliens, Skull Tales, and many others.

Fairly quick delivery of rewards is expected (August), and there are no shipping costs involved, since it's all digital downloads.

Campaign launched on: May 22, 2019

Campaign ends on: June 17, 2019