Truly, few things are so iconic to TTRPGs as a crudely drawn map on graph paper. Almost everyone has done this at some time or another. Map-making has a long tradition in RPGs, and it is one of the most common activites undertaken at the gaming table. Enough so that most gaming manuals suggest that the person that is to create the map be named. Mapping is in the rules.
Cartography is an extremely old profession and hobby, as well as art form. However, one of the trends in table-top gaming is the proliferation of extremely well-made maps. I can even think of a few people in particular who have created some absolutely spectacular stuff.
It just goes to show as well how engrained in gaming maps are. It’s so important that people have developed careers creating maps that can be used for TTRPGs. My 13-year-old self is reeling at the idea that the hobby would have evolved to this point, but here we are.
The interesting thing that I’ve noticed in this respect is what the maps look like. They are often large areas. Whole worlds, regions, or cities. Also, they are predominantly fantasy-oriented. I’m sure other genres exist in TTRPG mapping, but most of what I see are fantasy. The one exception to this would be Dyson Logos who creates dungeons, but these are also to be used mostly for fantasy gaming.
In my opinion, the evolution of gaming maps really demonstrate why this is a great time to play TTRPGs. The quality of the material has gone waaaaaay up, and I am thoroughly enjoying what is available to me. Hopefully some of this great content makes its way to your table.
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