Lanka is officially the most southern part of the world that I have mapped. I am beginning to realize that there are certain flaws in the projection of using a flat hex map to create the half dome of the northern hemisphere, causing my world to be somewhat fatter around the equator ... or rather, that the hexes themselves at the equator are in fact only 13 and a third miles in diameter, while still technically 20 miles high. This was unavoidable, and in fact doesn't bother me in the least.
Its the same distortion that occurs on the map below, which makes Africa and the small part of South America much larger in comparison with Northern Asia than they have a right to be. Personally I can live with the distortion, since this is D&D and the principle aim is to create a game world, not to devise flight plans for real world aircraft.
The bigger problem is the Southern Hemisphere, in that it too is a flat disk like the one above, the two flat disks coming together at the equator. The players aren't supposed to be able to tell, naturally (this involves hand-waving), but on the map itself the reverse becomes difficult to show. Remembering that the map 'turns' every 60 degrees, the flip side on the northern view then becomes six 'leaves' that extend out from the center map towards the South Pole. A simple version shows below:
|Only much, much bigger.|
If you're looking at a map somewhere in the middle of where one of the points meets the equator (on the larger version), it is easy to forget that the equator in the middle distorts the map. But where the map is at 30, 90, 150 degrees and so on, it is very evident.
However, the Southern Hemisphere can also be the center of the map, with the Northern broken into six points. This, obviously, is how I intend to represent it, since it is much easier for travel distances.
I wasn't going to go all into this, I was originally intending just to write one front paragraph and move onto other things, but what the heck. I ran into this on the weekend when I was preparing the map for the Maldives Islands, which extends south of India ... and to get the staggering right on the next ring of large hex maps (Lanka is split between H 14 and H 15), which would be 'I', I was sketching out the shape of the map for the Great Rift valley in Africa, which is on the 30th Meridian.
I get the sneaking suspicion, however, that there's something wrong with all this, and its been bugging me since Saturday. If someone wants to give me a poke and let me know what it is, don't hesitate. I think I've calculated something wrong in the projection split between the points ... but I honestly don't know what it is, IF it is anything at all. I'd like some reassurance that I've got it right, or some correction if its out there.
We all make mistakes.
Kees de Kunder sent me the necessary correction to the map above:
I'll leave mine up so the difference can be noted ... and as proof positive of my lack of perfection. Thank you Kees.