EXERT FROM APPENDIX 1 from Don Featherstone's Battles With Model Soldiers
(The book that got me started.)

"Nothing in these pages is a dictate, no word says you must or you shall do it this way. On the contrary, the book sets out from the very beginning to stimulate the reader to think for himself, and to use what he has read merely as a foundation for efforts and ideas which reflect his own temperament and character. Only in this way will he obtain maximum satisfaction from the hobby of battling with model soldiers."

-Don Featherstone 1918 - 2013

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

The Importance of Accuracy in Imaginary Map Making

Well I have many of the questions about the early days of  the Hougal Rebellion just about sorted now. It seems an error in copying a map was the cause of the confusion.

Actually Hougal was not even on my original map but there was a report of a 16th Century battle in Atlantica involving Scots and French vs English. (It was on my old website and I had a copy on cd till a month or so ago.) The English won handily and the French seem to have given up any colonial aspirations in Atlantica soon after. They did not, however, remove all the settlers or stop Huguenots from continuing to emigrate there in small numbers.  The traces of French ancestory remained in the territories just south of the central mountain barrier although there was much mixing with native Atlantican and other immigrants, especially Scots.

At that time I assumed, wrongly, that Atlantica was in the North Atlantic though why it wasn't better known escaped me.  When I discovered that beyond the mountains there were native kingdoms with adobe cities and a warmer, drier climate, I assumed the map was upside down. Fixing that put a major wrench in things including making a mirror image to keep Faraway in the West. Eventually I realized that the confusion was due to Atlantica being in the South Atlantic, well off the shipping routes. This resulted in yet another flip and renaming. It was then that the name Hougal appeared on the southernmost tip. Since it wasn't directly involved in anything, I didn't check out the accuracy of this until I discovered the Hougal wars of Separation in the late 19th and early 20th Centuries when Faraway and Hougal rebels allied against Oberhilse. Looking at the map, Hougal was tucked in close to the heartland of Oberhilse and separated by forests, swamps and mountains from Faraway. It also seemed odd that the land that copied French uniforms was so far from the only other area  that had French influence, Origawn and the Blue River Valley.

Now the location of San Carlos has never been mapped properly but their volunteers have fought as volunteers for Oberhilse and have appeared as allies of the Brethren far to the north of the mountains. Somehow during the remapping it appeared up north where an old abandoned Baltic colony had been.  This is a riddle but there is also a mystery as to why the Atlantican Kingdom in the north has not yet featured in Faraway's history, not any evidence of Faraway being active in the western 1/2 of northern Atlantica, just across the mountains, being confined to the far northeast instead. The war that changed that during the 1840's has not yet been documented and perhaps San Carlos plays a role.      

The corrected map.


To draw this closer to an end, it turns out that Hougal actually lies to the North-East of the disputed Origawn Territory and has cultural and historic ties to the Blue River settlements which are part of greater Faraway. After the Origawn War, Hougal was acknowledged as a Protectorate of Oberhilse but after the otherthrow of the Oligarchy and the declaration of a Republic, Oberhilse resisted pressure to become a province of the republic.  It is the proximity and cultural ties as well as the potential political and economic advantage that explains how it was that Faraway became involved so quickly in a war that was to drag on so long.

Unlike the petty skirmishes in Kapelle, this was war, war on the fringes of the settled lands but war that would stretch the resources of all three participants over a decade.




7 comments:

  1. Not bad at all! Having played my hand at imagine-nation building, a good map and story line are key
    to things flowing....Well done!

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    1. Thanks Don, I have a tendency to back in to things but try to let the story develop and and maybe backfill blanks but change as little as possible.

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  2. Sometimes proximity makes enemies and remoteness friends. I can well imagine Hougal following Faraway military fashions and trends, in order to distinguish themselves from their rapacious, predatory and expansionist neighbours. For their part, no doubt Oberhilse regard these ungoverned Hougal renegades as,,, well ,,, ungoverned Hougal renegades. In previous conflicts, possibly Faraway helped Hougal in some small way and helped defeat - or at least frustrate - Oberhilse depredations into Hougal lands. Or maybe it was Hougal who helped Faraway... :-)

    I like the map.

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    1. Thanks Ion, to date they have fought against Faraway more often than against Oberhilse, and possibly aided the Blue River Rebels in their day. They are closer fashion wise to Oberhilse as well but in the face of new demands I think it is a case .of the enemy of my enemy is my friend.

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  3. That map is very pretty. It looks elegant enough to be done by hand, but regular enough to have been done by computer program ...?

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    1. Good old fashioned graph paper drawn by hand then scanned in and text added. Done about a decade a go, maybe longer maybe a year less but touched up since digitally as required. The lines were dark enough and the grid in the graph paper pale enough that it disappeared after a scan, adjust, print and rescan.

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  4. Actually, I think I may have added the graphics afterward too..?..it was a while ago.

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