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$1,799
pledged of $6,000pledged of $6,000 goal
74
backers
11days to go

All or nothing. This project will only be funded if it reaches its goal by Sat, November 23 2019 3:45 PM UTC +00:00.

Isometric Map-Making

Developing new features to support isometric mapping in MapForge AND creating a wealth of top-notch isometric mapping content Add-Ons

Isometric Map-Making

Developing new features to support isometric mapping in MapForge AND creating a wealth of top-notch isometric mapping content Add-Ons

$1,799
pledged of $6,000pledged of $6,000 goal
74
backers
11days to go

All or nothing. This project will only be funded if it reaches its goal by Sat, November 23 2019 3:45 PM UTC +00:00.

About

This video picks up where the project video left off:

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Isometric maps were made popular by many computer RPGs and strategy games. A lot of people, however, might be familiar with the map style but not necessarily with the technical term "isometric". Maps made with with isometric graphics can create spectacular, richly detailed visuals.

For GMs of pen-and-paper RPGs, such maps are often more useful as visual aids than as tactical battlemaps that you would move tokens around on. However, some virtual tabletop programs (aka VTTs) now support isometric maps, and that number should gradually increase.

Isometric mapping offers a particular set of challenges. There is really not a lot of software available that is optimized for the creation of isometric maps. Those that are offer a remarkably limited asset selection and/or are unjustifiably overpriced. The world could really use an affordable isometric mapping app with an ample asset selection and superior asset quality. This project is all about making that happen.

Rather than develop entirely new software specifically for isometric mapping, which would result in much greater cost to backers, I will instead be adding isometric support to my existing MapForge mapping software (see the next section if you're not familiar with it).

MapForge has thus far been limited to top-down tactical-scale battlemaps, and more recently, expanded to also excel at hex-based area/regional maps. This campaign seeks to broaden MapForge's current areas of mapping expertise by adding isometric mapping to its repertoire. Namely, by adding new features such as a highly configurable isometric grid overlay, a snap-to-ISO-grid function, and automatic z-ordering of map elements.

But new software features alone won't suffice; that's only half the equation. You'll also need lots of great isometric mapping content/assets in order to create your gorgeous isometric maps, and that mapping content needs to cover several major gaming genres (medieval/fantasy, modern day, and sci-fi). So about half of the funding goal will go towards the creation of lots of isometric mapping content Add-Ons.

To keep the minimum funding goal low and the scope of this campaign manageable (as well as to ensure a shorter delivery time), the focus of the content Add-Ons that will be developed by this campaign will be limited to the "Medieval/Fantasy" and the "Modern Day" genres (with perhaps a smattering of "Post-Apocalypse" thrown in). The Sci-Fi genre will hopefully be addressed in the future (most likely via independently-published Add-Ons), if there is sufficient interest.

Note that not all of the isometric mapping content will come in the form of Add-Ons, however. There are tons and tons of high quality and freely downloadable isometric mapping assets available for all game genres, and while I don't have the right to distribute said content, I certainly plan to point you in the right direction so that you can grab these assets yourself. And that's exactly what I'll do in backer-only Updates during this campaign.

MapForge is map-making software that was successfully funded on Kickstarter in 2017. Version 1.0 of MapForge was released in 2018, along with an incredible 50 content Add-Ons already available for it from leading content providers. Since then, the number of content Add-Ons has more than doubled. Those of you who are new to MapForge should please visit the above links for more information about the software (it's simply too much information to repeat here). The FAQ for the original campaign is also a useful source of information.

The TL/DR version

  • MapForge is easy-to-use software for Windows and Mac OS that makes high-quality maps for printing or for use in virtual tabletop software (e.g., Roll20, Fantasy Grounds, etc.).
     
  • Can be used for free (no license required for low resolution output).
     
  • Comes with 23 free content Add-Ons (totaling well over 2 GB). This will increase to 24 by the time this campaign has ended.
     
  • You can download and try the software out for yourself, to evaluate it and see if the program is what you want/expect it to be. 

This campaign continues the tradition of teaming up with some of the best content creators in the field of mapmaking for RPGs to bring you top-notch art assets.

This time around, two new content providers are coming on board to offer their wares in MapForge's convenient Add-On format:

Michael Rookard (aka Galefire)

Alex Drummond

All of the other content being offered in this campaign is being licensed, instead (a big change from prior Kickstarter campaigns). Licensing fees account for about a fourth of the funding goal. 

In addition to your Pledge Rewards, during this campaign you may pledge for the following items. Simply increase the amount of your pledge by the cost of the Add-On/s you desire. A post-campaign survey will be sent to collect additional information and clarify exactly what items you pledged for.

Add-Ons from Galefire:

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Add-Ons from Alex Drummond:

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Fantasy Add-Ons from Battlegrounds Games:

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  •  Isometric Bundle (all 3 packs above, 724+ assets) $11 
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Modern Day Add-Ons from Battlegrounds Games:

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Genre-Independent Add-Ons from Battlegrounds Games: 

Click for details

Fantasy fans have two great styles to choose from:  "realistic" 3D renders, or the more painterly and evocative hand-drawn style offered by Galefire's and Alex Drummond's content. Pick whichever style you like most, or get both.

There is a very strong possibility that additional Add-Ons will be announced during the course of this campaign (particularly if initial support is strong), so be sure to check back here before the campaign ends. Some Add-Ons announced this way will be paid products, but there's a very good chance that free Add-Ons will be offered to backers, if Stretch Goals are met. The original MapForge Kickstarter campaign helped unlock 10 free Add-Ons. How many can we unlock this time around?

Some of the proceeds from Add-On sales will go to the artists, or towards paying licensing fees for professionally-produced isometric assets. The rest will go to Battlegrounds Games to cover the cost of developing/porting the Add-Ons.

All MapForge Add-Ons are in a closed/proprietary format, and the content cannot be accessed outside of the MapForge software. If you want the content in stand-alone PNGs/JPGs in order to use it in other image editing apps such as Photoshop or GIMP, you should instead buy the product in question directly from the content provider, if it is available. MapForge v1.1.6 or higher (due to be released in a couple of months) will be required to use the Add-Ons produced by this Kickstarter campaign.

If by chance you have already purchased some of the above content in the original PDF, JPG or PNG format, you should be able to use it in MapForge, albeit without the added convenience provided by the Add-On format, which offers benefits such as asset organization, speedy asset browsing, a tag-based search feature, and more.

In addition to using content from pre-packaged Add-Ons, MapForge also allows you to use your own artwork (either created by you, or downloaded from elsewhere, such as the Dundjinni user forums or rpgmapshare.com).

Please pledge only for Add-Ons listed in this campaign. If you want Add-Ons offered in a prior Kickstarter, you can order them from the MapForge web store, and receive them right away (no need to wait for this campaign to end).

If this campaign is successful, I will be working on fulfilling the Rewards as soon as possible. If there is significant overfunding, I will use it to develop MapForge further, in order to add additional capabilities and features that have been requested.

Just a placeholder section, for now. I plan to post the first Stretch Goal sometime in the next few days. Let's see how this campaign goes, first.

For now, there's just this Goal.

Funded before October ends:

I'll port the "Isometric Buildings" artpack from the Dundjinni site to MapForge's Add-On format and everyone will get it for free. It should provide a decent introduction to the world of isometric mapping, for those who have never tried it before. For a good preview of the contents, download the artpack from the DJ site. If this goal isn't met, you'll still be able to use these PNG assets in MapForge, via drag-and-drop. 

While the majority of potential backers of this project will likely be tabletop RPG gamers, isometric mapping is something that non-gamers can really enjoy, too. Creating isometric maps/illustrations is a fun, creative, and rewarding activity that anyone (regardless of drawing skill, or lack thereof) can enjoy.

Whether or not you choose to make a pledge to this campaign, I would greatly appreciate it if you could mention this project to friends or family members who might be interested. I've made it easy to do so; just click on one of the buttons below. Help spread the word far and wide.

Last but not least, I'd love it if you would follow Battlegrounds Games on any or all of these social media sites, so you can stay apprised of all the latest news and developments. And consider signing up to the MapForge mailing list.

Follow Battlegrounds on                      Facebook Twitter Pinterest

Thank you for checking out this campaign!

Risks and challenges

All rewards for this project are digital downloads, so shipping is neither a factor nor an added expense. Battlegrounds Games has over a decade of experience distributing software and content packs.

All of the third-party content being ported to MapForge's Add-On format already exists, so there won't be any delay in getting that content from each provider.

If there WERE to be a delay in completion of any content Add-Ons funded by this campaign, whichever Add-Ons have been completed by the estimated completion date will be made available for immediate download, and any remaining Add-Ons can be delivered piecemeal as they are completed, without holding up delivery on the entire order.

Full disclosure: The initial MapForge Kickstarter campaign was delivered late (many months past the estimated delivery date), but all of the campaigns I have run since then have delivered on time or earlier than promised.

Now that I've already produced over 100 MapForge content Add-Ons, I have a very solid grasp of how long porting content to MapForge format takes, and have further streamlined the process for faster turnaround.

Prior to launching this campaign, I have already completed the necessary R&D to assure myself that I can implement the necessary isometric code functions, so from a technical/programming standpoint, there is no risk.

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    Receive regular updates on the project's progress, and receive access to backer-exclusive updates. Thank you for your support.

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    Helping hand

    Perhaps you're not sure if isometric mapping is going to be your cup of tea, but would like to see it implemented in case you might want to explore this type of mapping in the future. Then this pledge level is for you. With this modest pledge, you can help ensure that MapForge will get isometric support. You'll also receive any Stretch Goals that are unlocked by this campaign, (e.g., one or more free isometric content Add-Ons).

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    MapForge License & hand-picked Add-Ons

    This pledge level is for backers who are new to MapForge. You will get a MapForge license, and the 24 free MapForge Add-Ons that will be available by the end of this campaign. Additionally, select the particular Add-On/s you wish to get from this campaign, and be sure to add the cost of the Add-On/s you want to your pledge total.

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