Maps in inventory, cartographer procedures

Are maps created by the Cartographer skill considered pack 1 inventory items?
Are maps created separately and revised per each adventure area?
Or does each Cartographer test generate a new map?

Hmm, good question. I had assumed that adventurer made maps were considered basic gear and did not take up slots. But then would found or purchased maps? Maybe you need a single map-case to hold infinity maps (or maybe just 11, that’s higher than most murder hobos can count anyway)?

I made this mapping log sheet for a list of locations with “explored” and “mapped” checkboxes. There will be a separate sheet for each adventure/dungeon area (Cartographer tests only apply to one sheet at a time.) I was considering treating each one as a separate inventory item and making the players carry them… but I like the idea of a map case too. I just wanna know who’s carrying the maps and where they all are… cuz evil GM reasons.

lizlarsen_torchbearer_mapsheet.pdf (15.1 KB)

The ones you create using the rules-invisible gear from your backpack I assumed fit back into the place they came out of. So much so that I, as party ‘mapper’, never even broached the subject at the table.

Maybe this was wrong?

I think that’s probably the intended assumption Dwight…
But if you create a Scroll from a spell (with ‘skill supplies’ in invisible inventory) it takes up a Pack 1 slot, so I wondered if it was a similar scenario for maps. Primary thing for my game I think is just to know who’s carrying the maps.

I would ask who has the maps and where are they stored. They might not take up a space, but we should all know their location. Should a player drop their pack, I don’t want to hear ‘oh, I was hiding the map in my sock!’

“Always hide the map in my sock.”

Stay cool 8)

Personally, I’d say the cartographer has the map and it’s part of his tools.

Maybe make it a Pack 1 item if he decides to make a copy for another player, or if he dies and another player takes it out of his pack?

Wow, I did not consider this.

Scholar supplies make scrolls, and a scroll is Pack 1, so I’d say that Cartographer supplies make maps, and a map is Pack 1, though I’d have no problem if I discovered the intent was that the map isn’t supposed to take up space.

The map feels like a work in progress, to me - at least until you leave the dungeon. That would seem to make it a part of the tools?

A scroll is finished, and has its ability, and thus it’s separated from the tools at that point. The scroll was paper and ink, and was a part of the tools even before in the physical sense, it just had to be sorted and placed somewhere else for accessibility.

You could also potentially assume that a scroll is far more fragile than a map, due to the magical energies stored within the lettering. If the map gets a little water damaged or a rip, it gains “character”, while a scroll potentially becomes useless.

Just to try to add supporting fiction around the rules-based metaphysics…

Maybe magic does have substance, and it literally swells? :slight_smile:

Also, it is green. Occasionally leaning into the bluish-white range but usually green.

I can see ‘finished’ purchased maps being like scrolls. Obviously to anyone without Cartographor (ergo no tools in backpack) this is definitely true.

Scrolls are a valuable and powerful resource that needs to be managed along with all the other resources. Too many available scrolls would throw the game balance out of whack. Imagine several characters instinct-scribing scrolls every time they make camp, and piling them up in their invisible skill-related inventory – that could mean amassing a lot of scrolls in just a few turns. Scrolls need to take up valuable space.

By contrast, the number of maps you have doesn’t matter much while you’re in the dungeon – you can only ever use the one map, and you don’t burn it to gain an advantage. Thus, maps don’t need to take up space. Also, making a map is the closest TB seems to come to Let It Ride – it’s the player saying “all right, it’s been fun so far, but now I’ve had it with stumbling around in the dark in this bloody hole and getting lost every second turn. Fuck that, I’m gonna test Cartographer to draw a map.” If he makes it, no more hassle for the players. Exploring the dungeon is nice, but having to continually re-explore already known areas is a bit tedious.

At least, that’s the way I think about it.

[Edit: A found or bought map for a new dungeon, on the other hand – now, that’s a valuable bit of treasure! It makes sense to have it compete with other loot and stuff for the limited space in your pack.]

I like the way you think Bobo :slight_smile:

Also, in my toolbox is that every twist is a scroll waiting to crumble into useless parchment dust.

Couldn’t agree with you more! We’re just dug down on how to explain this in the fiction… :slight_smile:

Scrolls are pack one so there is a limit on them so you don’t walk around with a giant stack of some spell

This isn’t really an issue with maps. I vote “no space”

Right. In that case, sorry for stating the obvious.

I think you’ve all got it, especially Kai-bo.

Cartographer created maps don’t take space because they’re part of that tool set.

But those maps are vulnerable, and protecting them with cases and the like requires valuable space in your pack.