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Creation is not square

I know that sounds strange, but the Exalted world of Creation simply isn't square. In the process of trying to figure out how to get a Google Map to work with Creation, I made some interesting observations. The earth is square, at least when you use a projection to make it square. The World of Warcraft is square, judging from the online map of that world. The world of Oblivion is square. Lots of fantasy worlds are simply... square. Most worlds are created on a piece of paper and square is just a natural shape. For some, they don't want to deal with the curvature of a planet, so they make it a "flat" world and I noticed most flat worlds are... square. Creation, on the other hand, was crafted to fit as the cover of Exalted, two pages side by side. So, naturally, it is more of a rectangle that isn't square. I will admit, I don't like flat worlds, there are so many little details that you have to think of, such as line of sight, horizon issues, and simple navigation. An anime banner in Exalted really should be visible for hundreds of miles, its a flat world and a bright enough light would be visible up to thousands of miles, even if just a haze.

Google Maps appears to work as a square. Z0 is a single square tile. Z1 appears to be 4 (2 by 2), and Z2 is just double that. Z4 is my "sweet spot" for the map, since I can make the world 16x16 tiles fairly easily. But, Creation is not square. It is also flat. That means that if I want to keep the distances flat, so going three pixels to the right is the same a three pixels up, there are these huge bars on the top and bottom. It's the approach I'm going to go through, but it isn't really that pretty looking right now. I also ended up cutting a few corners with my map, just grouping everything together and scaling it to fix 4096 pixels (16 256px tiles across).

If all goes well, I should have a prototype up on the http://mfgames.com/ (probably exalted/map/ which doesn't exist yet) domain by Sunday, along with a Sepia Throne-specific one on http://sepia.mfgames.com/. I think I found a cool way of using the canon map on the ST one, with the Sepia changes being just a few minor additions. I'm planning on having Z5 as the highest zoom in the map, roughly double the scale of the stepehnls' and my own map. That way, I can get the level of detail I really need.

I actually feel better about this. Yes, it can't be done with just a single map, but it is a way of doing what I wanted to at the end anyways, to create a MapQuest (Google Map) style map of a fantasy world. I also know that I'm doing this for a few reasons, the main reason is to give me practice so when I create my own fantasy world (Fedora, for example), it will look good because I worked on the Creation map first.

It looks really good so far. You can drag and move it around, Google has really created a nice little product and they let people use it for free. Kudos to them.