Exploring games that were published before I was born - and the games inspired by them.
I actually played around with the idea of using stencils to generate a dungeon. I decided it was doable, but only for a kind of dungeon that had repetitive features, maybe Dwarven mines (barracks, fish ponds, etc) or the temples of a certain type of culture. One thing a stencil will assist you in doing, that other generation methods don't do well, is place those regular features on your graph paper quickly and at various angles.
That's a pretty nifty idea, although where would you get them done?
@Telecanter: Maybe I just haven't thought about it enough- it just kind of occurred to me and I blogged it. What was it about geomorphs that made you decide it would only work with repetitive features?@BlUsKrEEm: Well, that depends. One option is to just make them myself (which I might try…). If I was doing DIY geomorphs I'd probably either use thin cardboard or clear plastic transparencies, like what math teachers use with overhead projectors.As for a company that would make them, I have no idea who would be interested in manufacturing and selling them. I would probably suggest that they use the hard plastic that rulers and protractors are made of.
You're right, my answer was more about "How can I use stencils in an interesting way to generate dungeons?" Than "Can I make stencils of geomorphs?"You could totally convert available geomorphs into stencils and then trace them onto graph paper. I think I was less interested in this at the time because you could use something like Dave's mapper to just print them out and be done with it.What interested me about stencils was how they allow you to draw something 1) a little difficult to draw (i.e. no need if it's just squares), and 2) repetitive (assuming you have a limited number of stencils).I even looked into making stencils a little. There are stencil machines but mostly they are for a thin substrate. There are laser cutters. And the probably industrial, die cutting machines. But I would just take an exacto knife to a report cover and DIM.