Kevin Snyder offers insights into creating great looking animated maps in Cinema 4D. Creating 3D Geometry using USGS Geographic Information Systems) DEM (Digital Elevation Model) data, this is a great walkthrough on how you can get a highly detailed terrain.
Create 3d geometry from USGS DEM data in Cinema 4D.
Kevin also uses and merges DRG (Digital Raster Graphic) data for the texture of the terrain, producing high resolution contours for the animated maps.
There is a bit of the Mograph module used to create a marker path along the animated map’s terrain. The final animation will be taken to Adobe After Effects to add depth of field and apply color correction.