The beauty of a good map is that it can be lifted from anywhere and used as an adventure setting for a game with minimal modification. I leanred this lesson early with a gamemaster who used a detailed topographical map of a section of bayou for an adventure that involved the party being pursued in boats by the angry natives who lived there. As waterborne adventures went, it was a blast, event though it did result in a total party kill (TPK). But the map really worked because the features were interesting and varied, but without recognizable landmarks that would have jarred the illusion.

If you’re a fan of J.R.R. Tolkien’s style of mapmaking, you should definitely consider the national park maps of Dan Bell. Not only are his stylized maps fun representations of real-world parks, their style readily lends their use to a game or simply as beautiful art for your walls.

Lake District National Park by Dan Bell