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TooJaded
March 7th, 2021, 19:43
I notice that that there no gridded maps with the Alien ruleset. How do others handle combat encounters and the like? Is it all theatre of the mind or do other users use various map making tools?

Valyar
March 8th, 2021, 08:48
The game is using zones instead of square/hex battle grid and distance categories, therefore no combat maps as we are used to in D&D-like games. It can support tactical maps though. The way I run encounters is to place the tokens in the zone on the map and basically run theater of mind supported by the map to help players better visualize dimensions and who is where. If tokens are engaged, I move them touching each other, the rest are spread in the zone.

TooJaded
March 8th, 2021, 19:22
thanks again :) I guess I am more used to combat maps in 5E, though I am used to running theater of the mind at the table :)

Trenloe
March 8th, 2021, 19:39
If you want to use maps to show rough location or help players picture the area then you have lots of options for how you source your maps: download maps from the Internet (doing various searches can find you lots), buy maps from various places (artist/cartographer websites, Patreon pages, DriveThruRPG, etc.) or make maps using a graphics app or one of the many RPG mapping tools. Then load them into FG to use as an image.

TooJaded
March 8th, 2021, 20:39
Will do that - thanks again

*Neuro*
July 6th, 2021, 19:31
If you want to use maps to show rough location or help players picture the area then you have lots of options for how you source your maps: download maps from the Internet (doing various searches can find you lots), buy maps from various places (artist/cartographer websites, Patreon pages, DriveThruRPG, etc.) or make maps using a graphics app or one of the many RPG mapping tools. Then load them into FG to use as an image.

hi. DO you have any links to some decent battlemap for Hadley's Hope? I think the game can easily have a proper battlemap and still use zones.

PhilAdams
July 8th, 2021, 16:48
You mean something more than the detailed map of the facility in the core book? I've run the scenario twice using just those maps. They work perfectly as battle maps (for me). I simply put a grid on them to maintain token scale, and when something happens, drill down to the specific room. Is it a matter of aesthetics? Are you looking for "realistic" maps (with objects and a broad range of colors and so on)? If so, I guess you could search around for some SF maps.

*Neuro*
July 8th, 2021, 16:52
You mean something more than the detailed map of the facility in the core book? I've run the scenario twice using just those maps. They work perfectly as battle maps (for me). I simply put a grid on them to maintain token scale, and when something happens, drill down to the specific room. Is it a matter of aesthetics? Are you looking for "realistic" maps (with objects and a broad range of colors and so on)? If so, I guess you could search around for some SF maps.

Sorry but the maps that came with the Core Rulebook for me are usable only for the GM.

I found better maps here : https://sites.google.com/view/alienmobius-resources/main?authuser=0

But I hope in the future Company realizes that maps for VTT can use more attention.

I will use the maps at the link, but in the future I will also try to make something myself.


Sorry I do not like much the theater of the mind style

PhilAdams
July 8th, 2021, 17:19
Huh. Can't say I care for their approach to the maps. It's obviously a matter of personal preference. :)

FWIW, I don't do TotM. I consider it terribly inefficient and disruptive. I always get a chuckle watching/listening to people who espouse it as a superior approach to gaming because combats inevitably grind to a halt answering questions/arguing points that wouldn't need to be dealt with if a map and minis/tokens were in use. Somehow, that doesn't knock people out of immersion, but tokens and maps do? Different strokes and all that. :)

*Neuro*
July 9th, 2021, 08:46
I think an expert GM can get a lot of help from well done maps. Alien RPG itself also helps you with the system.

I don't see anything bad with well done maps.

BY the way, how do you think the FG SCI-FI interior maps are for alien? worth it or not?

Would be nice to have an map art pack dedicated to alien only (not generic SCI FI)

gbhenderson
July 9th, 2021, 15:17
I use both styles of maps. I dig the Alien RPG maps, and my players have no issues with them. I'll occasionally use regular battlemaps just for some scenery, but even then, I'll stick with the games zone system instead of relying on map grid sizes.

Besides the stuff offered in the store, there are tons of free sci fi tiles out there for building your own maps, as well as some cheap scifi tile packs on DriveThruRPG. Lots of stuff on Reddit and Pinterest. Harness your Google Fu!

gbhenderson
July 9th, 2021, 15:28
Almost forgot...

You might wanna try https://newtbb.netlify.app/. It's a very simple to use app for drawing maps in the Alien style, and it does have grids on the map.

PhilAdams
July 10th, 2021, 03:08
That app is an excellent resource! Thanks!

PhilAdams
July 10th, 2021, 03:13
I prefer to keep to a certain look for each setting. For Alien, I love what Free League have done with their maps. For Conan, the tiles produced by Modiphius are generally top notch. Cyberpunk-style games work best for me with clean or highly stylized maps. For example, there's a Shadowrun map pack out there that's clean blue and brown lines that I've used for real cyberpunk games (no dipping nasty fantasy in with my SF, thanks). I also have a cyberpunk map book that's big on neon coloring and such. Both feel appropriate. D&D and other more generic fantasy games can switch back and forth among a variety of battle maps and maps. It doesn't really matter much, because you just need something for the tactical combat element. Check out the tool posted later in the thread. That's cool. :)

gbhenderson
July 10th, 2021, 16:24
I try to keep the style the same for Alien, but every now and then I like to use a battlemap, or even scenery handouts, just to break away from the monotones. I did create a template in photoshop that recreates the border used on the Alien maps. Add in a little noise and a simple overlay pattern to mimic the old computer screen appearance, and it helps make it feel grounded in the Alien universe. With 2e, I'd just grab anything I saw on the internet that could be worked into the scenario. It required so much more prep than Alien that I couldn't waste too much time on maps.

That app is great for spaceship blueprints. Enable symmetry and go to town.

Kingfish
July 11th, 2021, 15:15
Don't know if it will be of any use to you folk but, I use Dungeon Painter Studio and download the Aliens Art Pack for it. You can keep the 'look' of the FL maps but you can open them up for use with 5' (or 1.5 meter) squares for use as battlemaps w/tokens.

They have a free upgrade to version 2.0 that adds automatic LOS barriers and what not as well as lighting ques for converting directly to FGU...but it was a little buggy so I stuck with the original 1.0 version. I've used it to map out the entirety of Hadley's Hope though I called it something else for use in my story ;)

gbhenderson
July 11th, 2021, 17:44
Do you have a sample image from a small section of your maps? I'd like to take a peek. Couldn't find any images on their site or the Steam store.

*Neuro*
July 13th, 2021, 13:25
Also for maps sometimes you can find help on the official discord of Alien RpPG.

Fionor
October 6th, 2021, 12:57
I put grid on maps mainly to secure size and position of tokens. However, sometimes it can be tricky to set zones properly, so players won't be confused.