Hints on map design?

I’m trying to make a map on febuilder, but I suck at map design, any hints?

This is my map:It’s just the prologue map with a house on the bottom.
Fire Emblem - The Legend of Forde.emulator

Just draw a bit. Try to get some inspiration from already existing maps and it’ll get better in due time.

The thing I have the most trouble with are roads and mountains, the rest I can do better.

I’ve found mountains a bit tricky when I started. I’d suggest, look at maps from the original game and see in what kind of way the tiles are connected. It helped me a lot to figure out how it works. If you have trouble coming up with a map design, then ask yourself, what kind of ‘story’ do you want to express with your map?

For roads, keep in mind that they normally don’t do anything that plains doesn’t (not unless you change what they do, of course) so they can be safely replaced with plains until you feel confident enough to start working on aesthetically refining the map. When you’re new, it’s best to focus more on a map’s function than it’s looks.

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This video covers more of how I think about maps, but as far as building with the tilesets I learned a lot by mimicking vanilla and trial and error

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I HATE doing mountains, and there is so many tiles that they all start to blend together when looking at them or looking for a specific piece. But yeah look at vanilla maps will help alot.
Also for roads they shouldn’t be perfectly even or straight. As much as we want them to be there is hills, trees to account for and other things.

So, I messed around with some stuff and the map ended up like this:
The road is the same from the prologue chapter.
The objective of the map is to kill the Wight at the gate and seize, you’re encouraged to move quickly, because the dialogue will hint that there will be “more coming in about 6 minutes(6 turns)” It also hints to move the archer to the top spot where’s a bonewalker below the gargoyle to get a Speedwing. If you don’t move the archer to that spot before turn 7, you will lose it. The bonewalkers with bows have ballistas which you should use your cavalier(he’s a paladin on the picture but I’ll change him) to take care of them.
So, what do you guys think about it?

Seems pretty reasonable but this feels like quite a lot of enemies for a map with only four playable units and no pre-promote.

Also the time limit on killing the gargoyle seems incredibly lenient to me, but that might be fine if you’re intending on it being an easy chapter.

The time limit is just for anti-turtling, and all your units will be able to counterattack at range,
and you can get the archer a 1-2 short bow for close combat, I’ve buffed bows in a way that
they have high Mt, but low Hit

Ok, so I made some changes:
So, the 3 Emtombed have been replaced with a single Tarvos with a Devil Axe. You can kill him for it, but you will lose the bonus for not completing the chapter before turn 7.
Also, on turn 3 a Paladin and a Thief will come out of the tower to the left of the Revenant on the other tower.
And instead of having to move the Archer to the top of the map to get the speedwing, you just have to move the Thief to the tower to the side.
I didn’t add it yet, but the Bonewalker on the top will be replaced by another Ballista.
Also the Sword Ephraim Map Sprite was gotten from the Ultimate Asset Repo.

tip, make the map not feel like a box. So the thickets, move some out 1-2 more blocks so the outer wall is around 2-3 thick. So it’s kinda like a wave formation.

The forest tiles, use different forest tiles. Use the 2tile sidebyside tree ones. Use a different single forest tile, use the 4 already in a group. Spice it up.

Maybe add some different colored grass towards the middle forts to signify footprints of alot of movement is around there.

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I used multiple types of trees and added a river. How’s it look?

This is progressing well. Nice to see some thought going into the game-play by placing the gargoyle on the water.

I’d scatter different grass tiles across the plains to add more variety and break up the “tiling” effect.

Here’s my tips - when approaching map design for the first time, first design a level that you’d like to play. When you’ve finished, ask yourself: what do I think is missing; does it play how I wanted it to play; what looks great; what looks out-of-place? Act on those questions and before long you’ll have a map you’re really proud of!

When building outdoor maps, I always try to make everything look as “natural” as possible. Wonky lines, wobbly paths and forests - with little bits sticking out. I want things to look wabi-sabi. For medieval castles, I use the completely opposite philosophy - lots of boxes cobbled together as if they’ve been built up over time - with some kind of room that acts as a vista.

Hope that helps. Best of luck :smiley:

I added some more roads and another river. Also some snags to represent withered trees.

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There’s a certain aesthetics to it, it’s not very fire emblem like but it reminds me of the old gameboy games like legend of zelda, which could work if thats the feel you’re going for.

Thanks! I’ve wanted this map to have a Lost Woods feel to it. This is going to be the final version of the map.