On the topic of “draw maps but leave blank spaces,” I present here two maps I’ve made some time ago.

On the topic of “draw maps but leave blank spaces,” I present here two maps I’ve made some time ago.

On the topic of “draw maps but leave blank spaces,” I present here two maps I’ve made some time ago.

* The first one (large square map, with hexes and subhexes [each subhex should be 5- or 6-miles long]) has what I usually do when I GM a standard hexcrawl in other systems. Let’s call it Crawl.

* The second one (small rectangular map, with large hexes) has a different approach (I can imagine we have 30-mile hexes here, so this map is a lot larger than the other). Let’s call it Journey.

When thinking of my first DW adventure, I believe Journey is a superior map, as it allows me to create focused adventures but still has lots of room for my players to contribute. Am I right? Or am I missing the big picture in both?


By the way, this is what I’ve described as important places on the Journey map:

0100 – The Circle of Stones atop the Montain

0102 – The Holy Temple of the Woods

0107 – The Ruins atop the Hill Mine

0204 – The Town plagued by the Undead

0208 – The Hamlet with vanishing women

0210 – The City

0309 – The Raubritter Ruined Stronghold

0403 – The Ruins of the Mountain Temple

0501 – The Rift of the Gargoyles by the Stone Altar on the Mountain

0504 – The Hamlet on the Woods

0601 – The Buried Pyramid

0602 – The Cursed Hamlet on the Woods

0607 – The Town

0702 – The Burial Chambers of the Dark Mummy Lord on the Ruined Monastery

0005 – The Ruined Keep

0305 – The Home Base Hamlet

0407 – The Watchtower

0410 – The Hamlet plagued by the Raubritter

0608 – The Ruins on the Plains

0705 – The Lair of the You Shall Not Pass creatures


And this is what I’ve planned to do with it BEFORE I knew DW (but I think I can convert this to Fronts with some work)?


=Priestess go from City (0210) to Hamlet (0504)

=Cleansing cerimony goes wrong and Priestess accepts her dark side – she’s initiated (0403)

=Priestess becomes High Witch on Lesser Sabbat (0501)

=High Witch awakes Demonic Hamlet (0602)

=High Sabbat (0100)

Dark Mummy Lord

=Dead return to life due to broken seal (0204)

=Seal recovered on Forest Temple (0102) & Scroll of Undead Restoration stolen – only a copy is recovered

=”Test” of the Scroll on ruins (0403) during a cerimony

=Dark Mummy Lord awakes (0702) and is brought to the Pyramid (0601)

=Dark Mummy Lord’s power arises (0601)

The Deros (“drow dwarves”)

=Miners go from Town (0204) to Hamlet (0208)

=A special sacerdotal crafted crown with jewels is missing on Town (0607)

=Women disappear from Hamlet (0208)

=Gem merchant robbed on the road from Hamlet (0208) to City (0210), Raubritter at 0309 suspected — gems turn people suggestive (minor Charm Person spell) when worn

=Deros x Underground_Creature War due to collapsed mine passage linking the two territories (0107)


Oh, and while we are discussing maps, feel free to use them if you wish.

13 thoughts on “On the topic of “draw maps but leave blank spaces,” I present here two maps I’ve made some time ago.”

  1. I truly think that the journey map is better for Dungeon World; however I do not think that it is more focused as it is larger. I may be missing something though. I’m also not sure why you have so many spots on the map that are already named; also being a big planner I know how nice worldbuilding can be, but unless you already know what roles are those places going to develop into, how they’re going to affect the story; or well, being more precise, how is the story and how the characters are going to pivot around those parts, it’s pretty much pointless to have so many locations that you’re not even sure if your players going to go there.

    If I’ve learned anything during my many, many years GM’ing, and if the apocalypse engine means to hammer anything into the Game Masters, is that the players are absolutely unpredictable and they never do what you expected them to do. And that’s best of it.

    I mean it in the best of ways: Choose, give or take 5 – 6 locations, detail who runs them and what their plans are and have the players do the rest. If you want, keep those locations in your mind or a notebook and just bring them up whenever you feel it’s right for the players to encounter them and then place them on the map. Or perhaps the players are talking to an NPC and that NPC can name the location or a history regarding that location and then mark it in the player’s map.

    I’d also like to add that having a hex grid in Dungeon world is a bit redundant, having a free-form map is just as good and easier for the players to control. After all it’s their map.

  2. Thanks a lot for your insight, Camilo Suñer. I’ve used generic names, so nothing is written on stone. Those would be just general guidelines in order to know what’s there (and they are, or should be, broad enough to aloow players’ input). Do you really think I overplanned?

    Oh, and the hexgrid is there because those maps were, at first, designed for a hexcrawl. If I was to create a map today, I’d do it like this one: http://fermmoylle.deviantart.com/art/Attempt-002-263425977

    fermmoylle.deviantart.com – Attempt 002

  3. Peter Cobcroft, that one is not mine. But the author has the souce code available, so if you want to create a sci-fi generator (I imagine something with nebulas, star systems and so?) it shouldn’t be too hard.

    But I’m not a coder, so I can’t say much about it…

  4. Have you read the section on making maps in The Perilous Wilds? I think you’ll get an extremely unique and interesting map following that approach, especially if you include all of your players in the process. I always do a few rounds of it right after the party gets out of the starting dungeon; kind of a “where to now?” mini game.

  5. No, The Perilous Wilds is still on my wishlist.

    But my hexcrawl maps creation approach is usually tied to what I’ve read on Sine Nomine books, like Red Tide and An Echo, Resounding. I really like that approach, but I understand that’s too GM-centric.

  6. Highly recommend you check it out. I think it’s a must for every DW GM. If you can describe something as “GM-centric” I would run away from it for DW. The “play to find out what happens” principle is half the fun of DW for BOTH the players and the GM.

  7. Lauri Maijala, the Crawl map was made with Hexographer. There’s a free version if you wanna try, but I love the program and I purchased the Pro version (and even backed the recent v2 Kickstarter).

    The Journey map was made with Gimp, using public domain icons.

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