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Announcing my next project: MapForge

Posted: Thu Dec 29, 2016 5:28 pm
by heruca
EDIT:
heruca wrote:The MapForge Kickstarter campaign is now LIVE! Check it out!
Since (for now at least) I won't be developing Battlegrounds Ultimate, I'm switching gears to work on a completely new project.

It's going to be cross-platform map-making software (for Windows and macOS), suitable for creating both print-resolution maps and lower res VTT-usable maps. 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 your particular needs.

In late January or early February 2017, I'll be launching a Kickstarter campaign to try to fund the program's development. The program should appeal to GMs of face-to-face game sessions and those using any VTT software, who want to create their own slick-looking battlemaps but who find existing mapping programs (including image-editing tools such as Gimp and Photoshop) too intimidating/confusing/expensive. My program will be priced to be very accessible/affordable, likely in the $20-$25 range (at least during the Kickstarter campaign).

I'm going to post about this on various RPG-related sites to try and gauge public interest. But there's no reason we can't start here. Please let me know if such software would be of interest to you.

Re: Announcing my next project

Posted: Mon Jan 02, 2017 2:30 pm
by rab46
I would be interested.

Re: Announcing my next project

Posted: Sat Jan 28, 2017 1:12 am
by PellePlutt
I love maps and would use them during ttrpg sessions. However, I am not very creative so I am not sure I would use an app like this.
I would use an app like this to modify existing maps... such as adding or removing small elements.

Re: Announcing my next project

Posted: Mon Jan 30, 2017 9:33 am
by Dormouse
I would support any development in this area
Seems to have gone deadish for the last decade. Don't know if that is a pointer to potential though.

Re: Announcing my next project

Posted: Mon Jan 30, 2017 9:38 am
by heruca
Not quite "deadish", as I discovered when researching this market (again) a month ago, but the "killer app" still hasn't been made, IMO. Some interesting tools out there, though, for particular purposes. Hard-core cartographers will probably have more than one app in their toolbox.

Edit: Dormouse, do you have any idea what became of Red Monkey?

Re: Announcing my next project

Posted: Wed Feb 01, 2017 8:13 am
by Shadow Warrior
I would be very interested in this. There has been a yawning chasm in the mapping market since Dundjinni slipped beneath the waves.

Please let me know when you launch.

Re: Announcing my next project

Posted: Wed Feb 01, 2017 8:54 am
by heruca
Welcome, Shadow Warrior. Will do. I figure launch will be in a week to 10 days.

Re: Announcing my next project

Posted: Wed Feb 01, 2017 9:14 am
by Shadow Warrior
Yes, please do. Let's see if we can shout about this one widely.

Re: Announcing my next project

Posted: Mon Feb 06, 2017 1:17 pm
by heruca
I can now reveal the name of my mapping program: MapForge

And, for now at least, this is the app's icon.

Re: Announcing my next project

Posted: Mon Feb 06, 2017 1:18 pm
by Shadow Warrior
I like it.

Now, just take my money, dammit!

Re: Announcing my next project

Posted: Tue Feb 14, 2017 7:25 pm
by heruca
Getting close now! The MapForge Kickstarter campaign will launch either on Feb 18th or Feb 20th.

Re: Announcing my next project

Posted: Tue Feb 14, 2017 7:53 pm
by Shadow Warrior
You tease!

Re: Announcing my next project

Posted: Tue Feb 14, 2017 8:23 pm
by heruca
I inform. :P

(And tease a bit)

Re: Announcing my next project

Posted: Mon Feb 20, 2017 11:23 am
by heruca
The MapForge Kickstarter campaign is now LIVE! Check it out!

Re: Announcing my next project

Posted: Mon Feb 20, 2017 11:39 am
by Omnidon
heruca wrote:The MapForge Kickstarter campaign is now LIVE! Check it out!
Great ;-) You set the duration pretty short again though.

A more comprehensive list of intended features would be nice (things that aren't in the demo especially).

Also, reading between the lines, it looks like the "Addon Format" is similar to the media bundles from BRPG. If you're not providing the PNG versions of the artwork, you should make it more clear what the "Addon Format" is in the description.

Re: Announcing my next project

Posted: Mon Feb 20, 2017 11:41 am
by heruca
Some good points. The downloadable brochure talks a bit about planned features, and Updates during the campaign will surely bring that topic to the forefront.

31 days isn't short, though. It's pretty standard.

Re: Announcing my next project

Posted: Mon Feb 20, 2017 11:43 am
by Shadow Warrior
Fantastic news! Backed.

Re: Announcing my next project

Posted: Mon Feb 20, 2017 1:48 pm
by Omnidon
heruca wrote:The downloadable brochure talks a bit about planned features
Ah, you should make the brochure much more prominent - it's very easy to miss that little link.
heruca wrote:31 days isn't short, though. It's pretty standard.
It's pretty standard for kickstarters that were heavily advertised ahead of time and are heavily advertised during the campaign :P
Kickstarters for entirely new projects are often several months long.

Re: Announcing my next project

Posted: Mon Feb 20, 2017 2:09 pm
by heruca
I've been promoting for a month or so on RPG sites, Google+ communities, Facebook groups, etc., so it's not like this is coming from nowhere. I also can't wait around forever with my nearly negligible current income. Debts are piling up.

Re: Announcing my next project

Posted: Mon Feb 20, 2017 3:15 pm
by Omnidon
Well, making good progress so far at least ;-)

Re: Announcing my next project

Posted: Mon Feb 20, 2017 7:57 pm
by heruca
Indeed! It's exceeded my wildest expectations for Day-1 funding. :D

Re: Announcing my next project

Posted: Tue Feb 21, 2017 2:17 pm
by heruca
Minimum funding was achieved around 3:30 AM last night. :D

Re: Announcing my next project

Posted: Tue Feb 21, 2017 5:22 pm
by Omnidon
Gratz ;-) Stretch goal time

Re: Announcing my next project

Posted: Sat Feb 25, 2017 12:51 pm
by heruca
The KS campaign now has over 830 backers, 264% of the funding goal, and is rapidly approaching the second Stretch Goal. I'd say it's going better than could be expected, given that we're only on the 6th day of the campaign! :D

I just posted [urlx=https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/battlegrounds/mapforge-battlemap-creation-software-for-tabletop/posts/1815815]Update #4: "Using your own artwork in MapForge, and the benefits of the Add-On format".[/urlx]

Re: Announcing my next project

Posted: Mon Feb 27, 2017 12:05 am
by heruca
The 2nd Stretch Goal was achieved today. 8)

This will add support for random map layouts generated by Donjon, then tweakable in MapForge, where you'll be able to render your dungeon in print resolution with custom wall, floor, and solid textures (so it's not limited to fantasy maps, since you could make modern, sci-fi, etc. maps just by swapping the textures used). This feature should be a real time-saver for GMs, and they'll be able to change any randomly-generated result to suit their particular needs, or just to make the map make more sense.