A few days ago in the thread Mod-Idea: Typographer / Chronicle @Geoffers747 wrote: "Also, I’m pretty sure that the guys stated in one of the livestreams that there would be a fog of war type thing … it would be cool if by having your suggestion of a typographer, this fog of war would be reduced etc as you uncovered and charted the land."
Edit: He meant to say cartographer.
This made me remember some old thoughts for one of my own game ideas and after stonehearthing them, here’s a suggestion.
The world consists of four types of areas: Land in sight, Unknown land, Known land and Charted land.
Land in sight: The part of the world that your people can see at the moment. Shown in full color and detail and you see everything that is going on.
Unknown land: The part of the world that your people have never visited or even heard of. Covered in darkness. You can’t see a thing.
Known land: This is the part of the world that your people have visited at some point or heard of in some way. Maybe traders in a caravan tell you about the cities that they visit, or a group of survivors tell you about their hometown and where the titan lives that turned it into ruins. These parts of the world are shown in black and white (greyscale) and of course you can’t see what is going on there right now. However, if these areas are not visited in a long time they will get more and more foggy, maybe loose details and eventually fade into darkness. This process could be slower if there have been memorable events in an area.
Charted land: This is the part of the world that you have maps for. Either your cartographer have been there or you have bought or found maps somewhere. It is shown in yellowish/brownish and with contours, as if drawn on old paper. It will not fade over time. However, it will not be updated just because someone goes there and have a look, unless that someone is the cartographer. The cartographers skill level and equipment could determine how much he can draw at ones (how much area he covers). It could also affect how detailed the map gets.
A much more difficult version of this (depending on how flexible the world generator is) would be that the areas shown as Known land or Charted land could be wrong.
The Known land could change over time. Trees, hills, water and so on could move around, disappear or lose details, to simulate that peoples memories change. The type of land could also change. If people tell stories of the place where the monster lives then their mental image of that area could turn more and more into a hostile land with dead trees, streams of lava and skulls and bones lying around.
The Charted land would be more realistic but depend on the cartographers skill. Parts can end up at the wrong place and the whole map can get skewed.
Maps and information about the land could be traded with. If you could give out false maps and information then it could be used to make enemies think that they can’t attack on your weak side or give diplomatic benefits if the other factions think that you have a larger city.
I think that’s all I have. Sort of.
So… what do you think?