Modern Maps

I’m creating a bundle that will include patterns, textures, icons and brushes based on modern maps such as the one below. I create a lot of modern looking maps for tabletop role-playing games such as Top Secret: New World Order and Call of Cthulhu as well as some lesser known games like Hive Queen & Country and NecroMech. This bundle will include files for both Photoshop and Illustrator.

Fisk Plate 22, Sheet 1, http://www.radicalcartography.net/index.html?fisk

PuppetRegime Games

Ye Olde PRGames logo.

The year was 2012. I was somewhere in Afghanistan staring out into the nothingness that be and had a vision of becoming a puppeteer. I even had a fullblown Kermit the Frog puppet sent out there–this was mainly to get a photo of Kermit behind the Ma Douce. Sadly, that photo-op never happened as Kermit arrived too late, he was held up at one of the bigger FOBs. I also never persued puppetry in any form either… Kermit’s probably rotting in my dad’s garage… that’s the real tragedy of this story…

At some point I shifted gears to game design and I came up with name PuppetRegime Games. Any who, long story short, I haven’t used that name in a few years and it is henceforth officially retired. The 14 some odd items I had in DriveThruRPG under that name will probably end up here for free in some shape or form. Most of that stuff was pay what you want anyway. I think my A2 Grid Series was the most popular. Here was my favorite.

God Damn Them All…

Nothing says that you care about your players’ collective mental health as describing a dungeon drawn on that crazy mess while they try to keep notes on regular graph paper.

This next on in the A2 Grid Series was for people who can’t make up their minds on which system they’re going to use. I’m a long time GURPS and AD&D guy, so I thought this would be useful in some capacity….

I don’t think this was downloaded once.

Makin’ a Hex Grid.

Draw a line.
Copy and Paste the line and Rotate the new line 120 degrees.
Copy and Paste the Rotated line and Rotate that new line 120 degrees.
Bring those lines together.
Copy and Paste that contraption a few times. This would also be the time to put in some numbers if you’re going to need a numbered grid.
Copy and Paste that, stack it, then edit it to create this pattern.
Go crazy.

There are many ways to create a Hex Grid, the easiest is to snag one. You could copy paste hexes made in Illustrator and have a fun time trying to arrange them to form a grid. There’s another Illustrator way to measure the length of various parts of the hex and use two or three Transform Effects to create a grid–haven’t tried that–but, for the regular “I don’t really know what I’m doing with my life” kind of a guy like myself, these 7 steps is way to go.

If you need to number all these damn hexes, gods have mercy upon you. Align the number during Step 5. After the grid is created you will have to edit the text and re-number everything, but if you did it right, the alignment should be correct throughout that beast… that’s something at least.

The Wacom USB Port

I picked up the Wacom Intuos 5 a long time ago when my ancient Graphire 4 died. All my gear is old, my computer is a late 2009 iMac and I should have replaced it 6 years ago with a new model etch a sketch. I have an abacus that is newer. While the poor state of my computer is an article for another time, I’d like to talk about what to do if you’ve broke your Wacom in the same exact way I broke mine. It’s an extremely common problem.

The chances are good that you have or will break the USB port if you use one of these things.

Now, some people have had success in resoldering the USB port, but there’s a chance that trying that will brick the tablet. Since I only know how to solder copper pipes together, I was not going to try it myself. Also, no electronic repair guy would touch mine.

Here’s the best solution: buy a new one. If that’s not in the cards, and it wasn’t for me, this is what you can do and it still invovles buying a few items.

Wacom Wireless Accessory Kit

Wireless kit. If your Wacom USB port is broken and will not talk to your computer you will need this.

Now. The wireless kit comes with a battery, and the battery normally charges via the USB cable, through the port that is BROKEN! So…

Onite Universal Battery Charger

Battery Charger. You will need something like this for the battery. The universal chargers have little adjustable prongs on the side and a spring loaded slider to grip the battery in place. It’ll charge any kind of cell phone style battery, I’ve charged camera batteries when the damn proprietary charging cord has been lost to gods knows where.

One headache of the variety that probably only happens to me was that the first charger I bought never showed up in the mail. POOF. VANISHED. Was never found. Amazon, the battery charger company and USPS were unable to do anything. The second charger I bought–different company–was defective, but I was eventually sent a replacement and a refund as a bribe to remove my negative comments.

Now I did look for these kinds of chargers locally. I couldn’t find them anywhere. Your luck might be different, but I had to go online.

Probably a fire hazard.

On a full charge the battery lasts as long I can stand to sit in one place and work on my maps… which is a long time. With any battery is a good idea to only charge it when it gets low… there’s something called “battery memory” that kills the life span if reutinely charged before they’re completely dead. Or so my dad says. Who knows. I charge mine over night every so often and pray for the best.

I suppose I’ll write article on my other computer problems. I might explain why my keyboard is in a shadowboard made of foam that you would normally only see in roll around toolboxes. Short answer: cats are assholes.

His Royal Fluffiness, Joey XVIII