After the headache that was my first attempt at a topographical map of the City of Splendors I wasn't exactly eager to take another swing at it. But after investing all that time and material I'd rather have something to show for it rather than a "Don't Do This" lesson. It took about a day to rejigger the files and drafts to work with the plywood and I scaled the map down a touch to reduce the number of segments I'd working with. And I'm glad I went through the trouble because the result is excellent!
I fixed the whole thing on a 1x2' piece of MDF that I painted and sealed to look all water-y. My signature's looked better but it was just a goofy personal project at the time. The plywood engraves wonderfully though and all the text (even the teeny tiny street names) is pretty readable if you get up close. All the tiny details (like the sea caves or trees beneath Cliffwatch) came out really well. I was close to inverting the image (so the streets would be burned down beneath the buildings, sort of like a relief carving) but seeing the final result I think this was the right way to go. Cool as having the buildings stand up above the streets would be, it would also mean the buildings were semi-fragile white bits over black streets and it just doesn't quite look right.
It's been a little while since this has been up over our game table and it's been pretty handy to point at (with laser pointers) while we're planning where to go in the city. So handy that I decided I may as well add it to the shop!