Pencil and paper. :)
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> On 6 Nov 2002, Handorobou wrote:
>> I can't believe how many interpreters don't include some sort of
>> automatic mapping. Mapping by hand seems awfully primitive to
>> me. I've tried Frobot, which is nifty, but imperfect. The other
>> mapping tools that are in the archive look like they are meant to
>> be used manually, although I admit I haven't tried many of them.
>> How do you all map games? Do you use one of those tools or do
>> you have another method?
> Pencil and paper. :)
Me too. I always have a bunch of papers by my keyboard anyway, to jot
down all kinds of notes on (and draw all kinds of weird things on).
When playing a game, besides a map various things that might be clues
also get written down on that paper. With the exception of games
where the mapping is taken care of by the games themselves (like Eric
the Unready) I wouldn't want it any other way. (And, while playing
Eric I of course still filled the paper on my desk. Not with maps,
but with everything else...)
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I love mapping by hand. I never have to worry about whether the
software supports dotted lines, dashed lines, curly lines, arrows,
double arrows, circled letters, Greek letters, Hebrew letters, Elvish
letters, little notations about which color / animal sound /
temperature applies to each room or exit...
(If I was at home and had my stack of adventure-game notes, I could
give more examples.)
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> I can't believe how many interpreters don't include some sort
> of automatic mapping. Mapping by hand seems awfully primitive
> to me.
Mapping by hand is *much* faster than using a computer program.
But I really like the auto-mapping feature in nitfol, and wish
more interpreters would support something like this.
But generally, I prefer games, where it's not necessary to create
a map, either because the 'map' is very 'logical' and easy to
remember, or because the game / playing area is very small.
Don't treat fictional people as if they were human beings.
It only encourages them.
Human brain. If the map is to complex to fit at least the basic
layout in my brain, odds are that the game is too geographically
complex for me to enjoy anyway.
> How do you
> all map games? Do you use one of those tools or do you have another
I generally don't map games. If the map is too complex or yucky to fit in
my head, I usually give up on the game. Then again, the whole of the map of
Anchorhead is still in my head, so that's not likely to happen soon. ;)
Except for that maze, though... Mazes are an exception to this: usually,
whenever I come across a maze, I head for the net and dig up a walkthrough.
If I need to keep notes other than maps, I use notepad.
I love manual mapping, too, but I got frustrated too often with pencil and
paper when again I ran out of space at the edge of the sheet. So now I'm
using Micrografx Designer, just because I know it since version 1.0 - any
other drawing/CAD tool would do as well.
Getting started is a bit tedious until you find your style and have a set of
reusable symbols ready, but then drawing while you play becomes pure fun. I
often rearrange maps when somewhere in the middle a new cluster of rooms
turns up or a surprising shortcut gives a completely new picture. I got
really tired of redrawing the whole map again and again, so a vector drawing
program is the thing for me.
I "map" mazes in Excel.
Matthew T. Russotto mrus...@speakeasy.net
Every time you buy a CD, a programmer is kicked in the teeth.
Every time you buy or rent a DVD, a programmer is kicked where it counts.
Every time they kick a programmer, 1000 users are kicked too, and harder.
A proposed US law called the CBDTPA would ban the PC as we know it.
This is not a joke, not an exaggeration. This is real.
>I love manual mapping, too, but I got frustrated too often with pencil and
>paper when again I ran out of space at the edge of the sheet.
I agree. Running out of space on the paper is a pain. When I'm actually
playing a game (which isn't terribly often nowadays) and mapping it, I
almost always end up running out of room on my page. I start near the
center so I have room to work out, but it usually ends up that the starting
point wasn't really near the center of the full map and so I run out of
room. Usually in that case I end up finding a section of the page that's
got a lot of blank space and write it there or I flip the page over and
start using the back. Sometimes I need the back anyway. Andrew is
certainly right about hand mapping meaning you can use whatever symbols
and lines and stuff you want. This is useful because I often make notes
of where I found objects or brief solutions to puzzles with the rooms.
Apart from running out of space, the other thing that bugs me a bit is
when the room connections bend, like when you leave east from one room to
get back to it from the next you don't go west, you go southwest say.
When this sort of thing happens I almost always end up having to redraw
sections of the map because I screwed things up the first time. Sometimes
floor/level changes make things confusing, too. I had this problem with
Mulldoon Legacy. The places you could go up or down a floor made it a
little hard for me to map well and still keep track of which floor I was
on in a given room. But in the end, I still do the mapping by hand.
I've tried some computer programs to do it in the past, but never learned
them well enough or just didn't want to put the time into learning them
to make them worthwhile for me to use. Often I don't start mapping
immediately, trying to keep the general layout in my head. When it starts
getting a bit large or complicated and I have trouble finding my way
around with just a mental map, then I'll usually go to pencil and paper.
> I generally don't map games. If the map is too complex or yucky to fit in
> my head, I usually give up on the game. Then again, the whole of the map of
> Anchorhead is still in my head, so that's not likely to happen soon. ;)
> Except for that maze, though... Mazes are an exception to this: usually,
> whenever I come across a maze, I head for the net and dig up a walkthrough.
Actually, Anchorhead is the game that convinced me I need to come up
with some sort of scheme; I was having trouble mentally storing that
one. Yeah, lots of games don't need to be mapped if you're paying
good attention to where the room exits are.
I actually use xfig most of the time when I decide I need a map. I'm use
paper, except that I'm not generally all that good at getting the
large-scale layout of things right, and end up wanting to rearrange things
later. For some reason, I also have a tendency of swapping east and west
in mental maps. Of course, xfig is actually terrible for mapping, because
it doesn't support attaching the ends of lines to objects and then moving
the objects around. But some other object-based drawing program might be
*This .sig unintentionally changed*
I have the same problem, it bothers me a lot. Now that I'm
paying attention to it, I manage not to swap east and west too
often, but still, this is bothering. I drew the whole map of
Theatre (on paper at that time) reversed!
> Of course, xfig is actually terrible for mapping, because it
> doesn't support attaching the ends of lines to objects and
> then moving the objects around. But some other object-based
> drawing program might be suitable.
I use dia. I have posted a long article (way too verbose in
retrospect) about it in the mapping thread that developed here
August mapping thread