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  1. #1
    Super Moderator josta59's Avatar
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    Campaign hex map

    Hello,

    Last weekend I wrote here in Proving Grounds about some campaign map rules I borrowed from, converting from Warhammer to realistic military rules.

    I've had some boring conference calls this week, and I took the opportunity to work on my first campaign hex map. Now I'd like to show it to you and describe how I went about it.

    Name:  Juba campaign map.jpg
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    As usual, I used PowerPoint. I took a screenshot of Google Maps, with the exact geographic area I wanted on my map. Typing the PrtSc key on my keyboard puts the screenshot on my clipboard (it may work differently on your computer). I right-clicked the PowerPoint slide and chose the Blank Layout. I right-clicked again and then clicked on Format Background. This panel gives the option to "Insert picture from," and I clicked the Clipboard button, which added the satellite image to my slide as a background, so it doesn't move around when I add hexes and labels.

    Drawing the hexes turned out to be much harder than I expected. You can't just use the Shapes feature to draw hexagons and have them fit together easily. Not even if you hold down Shift while drawing them, which helps them keep the right shape but still doesn't get the job done.

    Fortunately, PowerPoint comes with a SmartArt feature nowadays. And one of their SmartArt items happens to be a few interlocking hexes!

    It still wasn't easy, because it took a lot of trial and error to figure out how to add and delete hexes until I had the pattern I wanted. I had to get them the right size to fit my map well, too. I had to fit them together by hand (er, mouse), and I had to remove the color from the inside of each hex individually, and recolor their borders.

    But, as you can see, it can be done. And now, if you decide to try it, I've saved you some time. A lot of time that I wasted. But at least I won't have to do it again, because now I have this and can copy/paste on a new map very easily.

    My hexes are a little off-center on the map, and that's because I wanted to include the airport in a hex, or at least part of it. I forgot when I took the screenshot of the satellite image that my top row of hexes is only 3 hexes long!

    Lastly, I also want to tell you how I made the red and blue translucent hexes. That's really easy. Just select the hex you want (this can be tricky because the hex is inside a SmartArt box, so make sure you've selected the hex and not the box around it), right-click it, and select Format. This opens the Format panel, where you can go to Shapes > Fill > Solid fill, and find the Transparency slider. I clicked the number box and typed 75. Just enough to see the color and still see what's under it.

    Each time my armies take over a new area, I'll repeat that process in a new hex to show how far they've spread.

    I haven't labeled my hexes yet, but that's as simple as adding a text box, typing what you want, and then resizing, recoloring, and repositioning the text as you like.

    I hope that's all somewhat clear. Good luck to you!

    PS--I would attach the PowerPoint file here, but the forum won't let me. That would've really saved you some time!!
    Last edited by josta59; 10-01-2019 at 11:56 AM.

  2. #2
    Super Moderator josta59's Avatar
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    Em reset the forum so that PowerPoint files can be attached. So here it is. Thanks, Em!

    This is an updated file with important locations labeled.

    Juba campaign map.pptx

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