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Have you ever mapped out a town (on graph paper or mat) in playable size?


Rakumi
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I have the layout of the hamlets, villages and towns on small 1/4" graph paper.  5 ft per square.  However, I have the buildings on paper at 1" = 5ft in a loose stack (normally stuck into sheet protectors in a three ring binder).  This way, I can re-use or re-purpose the buildings for various encounters without having to have a specific map for each one.  As I am slowly building Hirst Arts buildings, we are using them more and more in place of the paper maps.

 

If you are going to be using one city as a focal point, then drawing it out on paper may be worthwhile.  My players have really enjoyed the 3D aspect that has been creeping into the games of late...  Even if they do have to stand up to see where they are going.  Alleyways between buildings are narrow, cramped places.

 

I found a roll of 1/4" graph paper, 36" wide, and 500 FEET long, at a local print shop.  The cover was so dusty, and the price clearly reflected that it had been in the store for a while, that the sales guy sold it to me for half price, just to clear it from the store.  I probably have half of it left over the last 15+ years of using it.

 

ETA:  Amazon has a 34.5" by 200 ft roll of 1" graph paper for $38 plus shipping.  Search for Pacon Grid Roll.

Edited by Bonwirn
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Hey Bon,

that seems cool.  You were able to manage smaller sheets of game scale to place together as one massive town.  I tried looking on amazon but I did not see the product you mentioned to have graph lines.  I purchased mine from gamingpaper.com. they are pretty cheap.

 

As far as building Hommlet, I just googled it.  It looks almost possible to do.  My town seems half that size (just the buildings section) but with just as many buildings.  Most of my structures are 4x4 inch size.  Gamingpaper rolls cost about 5 bucks for a roll of 30 inches by 12 ft.  Try it out.

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So i have been slowly adding the furniture in the homes.  I have had to practice drawing some of these items because i want it to look decent and for people to recognize what a bar stool is.  I started placing the long benches in the town hall.  Should hold about 24 - 30 people depending if i can have a 5th row of benches or if i stick with 4.  

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Assuming you mean a real, medieval village, the answer is houses, probably built over stables for warmth.

 

A small village might have a population of 200 or so farmers (small villages are almost exclusively farming communities), who would produce their own food, make their own clothing, do their own carpentry, and so on. In order for a business to exist, the businessman has to provide something more efficiently than other people and provide enough of it to be able to feed himself.

 

A flour mill has that kind of economy of scale, but it needs more people than a single village, so it was, I think, fairly common for a mill to serve several such communities. Other craftspeople, if they didn't set up in the big city (maybe 2000 - 5000 people) would travel constantly to get the kind of customer base to be able to eat regularly. There would probably be a field or green customarily used by such people to camp when they came to town.

 

Note that a tavern would be uncommon in small towns, because everyone would brew his own beer and make his own food. Only on a significant thoroughfare or in a bigger town would a tavern actually become a business. And the kind of business called in later times a General Store presupposes an efficient transportation system that didn't exist in medieval Europe.

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For real, or for pseudo-medieval European fantasy role playing?

Yes, fantasy role playing.  I have seen some locations include libraries and things of the such.  Just want to know so I am not missing anything that is major or typical in a town/village.

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I've been into maps and archeology since I was little. The earliest map I recall drawing was the Roman Empire in the time of the Antonines, copied out from Gibbon when I was nine. I designed an entire modern city in ridiculous detail when I was thirteen or fourteen.

 

There's a British publisher called "Shire" that has all sorts of cool little books of maps of abandoned villages and details of how medieval buildings were built and prehistoric dwellings and things like that. I recommend them to get an idea of town layout, building size and placement, etc.

 

The only problem is outside of Roman towns, no one in Europe seems to have built on a grid. Then again, I prefer to use hex paper for mapping.

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Hey Doug, what you speak of seems a bit less of what I am thinking about, though it is well thought out.  I am think more like a small town (if you would call it that) that travelers would pass thru in passing and would be in range to receive delivery of goods so no need to be self sufficient.  So like there would be small business but they would survive off having products brought to them probably from the neighboring big city.  Fantasy times of course.  

So like the population of this small town if you will, is about 30 people and maybe 20 to 30 non residents at a given moment.  

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So I was not able to post a photo or even link the photo thru another site I am on for photography, but I can just send the link to that site and you can click on it to view my little town.  I have since added some more interior furniture.  So you have an idea of the scope of what I have done.  

 

www.dpreview.com/galleries/7473931624/photos/3182742/

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