RPG Software Part 3 – Fractal Mapper

Fractal Mapper v8.0 by NBOS Software


Another mapping software in review. While Hexographer and Dungeonographer are very specialized tools Fractal Mapper is a full blown mapping suit. The primary use was to generate Fractal outlines for Continents or Islands, hence the name. The functionality is still there and used in plenty of functions, like fractal trees, continents or circles. Included in your purchase is a free software called Fractal World Explorer that lets you generate fractal worlds. The output does is generated using realistic formulas. The resulting map can then be manipulated in the tool by tweaking temperature, height and precipitation. Thiscan be used as is or as a base for a Fractal Mapper map. In addition Fractal Mapper contains a multitude of mapping symbols and tools to create great looking campaign maps from scratch. The fractal tools create fantastic backgrounds, coastlines or rivers. These can either be drawn in simple colors or painted with detailed textures. Afterwards you can choose from various continental map symbols to add in mountains, forests, cities etc. FM8 supports the creation of sub maps from a bigger campaign map. This makes it easy to map put a continent and then more detailed area maps where needed.

But continental maps are not the only type of map you can draw, FM8 also handles Battlemaps very well. Instead of painting down individual squares you paint Fractal shapes that you can manipulate in various ways. You can add a texture to them, a bevel,  drop shadow or blur. By combining various textures and effects you create the maps background. If that is too much work you can also simply fill the background with a single texture or color. The software comes with a catalog full of various items and textures to detail your maps with. If the mapping symbols available are not enough it is easy to add your own as Fractal mapper supports PNG images as symbols. When you have finished your map you can cover it with an automatic grid in a size of your choosing. There are Square, Dot, Hex and Offset Square grids available. And finally printing over multiple pages is very easy to do from the printing dialog directly. Fractal Mapper also integrates with various other NBOS tools like Screen Monkey.

Fractal Mapper is a great and easy to use mapping tool . With a bit of a learning curve you can create fantastic looking maps in no time. If you want to check it out yourself there is a limited trial version available from NBOS.

2 thoughts on “RPG Software Part 3 – Fractal Mapper

  1. I have this software as well and have had good luck with it. I usually make maps using the Gimp now but there’s no question that fractal mapper is much quicker and easier than doing them free style. Using them in conjunction with each other is very effective though too. I’ve made maps in Fractal Mapper and then exported them and continued working on them in Gimp.

    The Nbos space mapping software Astrosynthesis is very cool too though I found the learning curve was a little more steep than Fractal Mapper.

    I have Screen Monkey as well though I’ve never used it.


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