Five Foundations Of Worldbuilding As a writer of fantasy and science fiction, I’m often asked for my tips on world-building. Earlier in 2012, I taught a workshop on it at my local library, and all year I’ve been meaning to put those notes online. Finally I have time to do it! So, here are my thoughts on world-building, with examples for you to investigate on your own. In the Beginning … If you look online or in books about writing fantasy, you often find lengthy lists of questions to ask yourself about the world you’re creating. My hand-drawn map of Ash’s world A lot of these world building guides also suggest that you draw a map of your fictional world. Of course, it is important to spend some time on world building, especially if you’re writing a story set in a secondary world.2 But I don’t think you need to get bogged down in answering 100 questions about the economics and politics and plant life of your world. Five Foundations of World Building Who has it? The ritual of the Sorting Hat The ritual of the Reaping Ramen!
A Map of San Francisco, After a Catastrophic Rise in Sea Levels Far in the future, San Francisco's Divisadero Street is a cruise-ship harbor, taco trucks have become taco boats, and the Mission District is a beloved site for scuba diving. That's the waterlogged vision of cartographer Brian Stokle and Bay Area blog Burrito Justice, who've made a fantasy map of the city post-200 feet of sea-level rise. The map, though it's been around a while, is getting its wonky due in a new urban-cartography exhibit at local urban-planning think tank SPUR. (The show runs until February 6.) Regarding its inspiration, the entity behind Burrito Justice says via Twitter: "Brian made a topo map, I was joking around, wanted to know when Potrero & Bernal became islands. 200 feet is where things got interesting." There's a fake NIMBY group, the Submerged Historic San Francisco Preservation Association, that rails against high-rise development with the battle cry, "Old San Francisco is still alive in our hearts and minds, even if only the tops of the buildings can be seen!
Alternese (JBR Uchronlang) Justin B Rye 01-Dec-13 PROLOG Myriad Forking Tongues What would English be like if 1066 hadn't happened? I don't mean that in the freakish calendric anomaly sense, obviously; I mean it in the ordinary sense of allohistorical linguistics. The answer is that eliminating the Battle of Hastings might make less of a systematic difference than you'd imagine, except to the spelling (which admittedly is enough to make the language look thoroughly foreign). However, that doesn't tell us anything about the importance of this one allohistorical hinge-point, since much the same would be true in any ATL of similar age, such as the one where William I died in 1067 and left his followers to squabble over the kingdom. (This one's been done before, but usually badly. VURWORD Present Conditional Before I start I'm going to need to give a bit of linguistic background. (If you're wondering where the brackets are, sorry: it'll be because your browser doesn't support CSS…) MAP I Outlook Changeable
20 World Building Questions for Authors to ask Themselves Author at work: now is the time to ask yourself these world building questions World building is the art of convincing a reader that a fictitious place exists. What do you do if you don’t know where to start creating that illusion? Well, to get you going, here’s a list of 20 world building questions you can ask yourself to get started. What is the geography like? Don’t fall into the Star Wars Trap of having mono-climate worlds (Tatooine = desert, Hoth = ice, Endor = forest). Why is that city there? Cities happen for reasons. What do people eat? If your world contains fantastical creatures, consider which of them are edible. The first person to discover a creature is either a scientist or an explorer; the second is invariably a cook. If your world is more Earth-like, take a cuisine appropriate to your climate and adapt it to your world. Who or what do they worship? Was your world made by one or more gods? How do they express that worship? Are there organized religions? What languages are there?
A Sprawling Videogame City Filled With Buildings Made by Generative Algorithms Game designer Cedric Kerr developed an architectural engine that allows for the rapid creation of buildings to fill out virtual landscapes. Cedric Kerr Kerr only needs to draw an outline of a building and then can stretch it in any dimension while an algorithm populates the form with doors, windows, and other architectural details. All the buildings feature strong right angles which is partly a desire for an oppressive, Brutalist architectural vibe and partially a limit of Kerr's algorithm. Kerr hopes to explore other architectural styles as time permits. In addition to creating unique building, Kerr developed an engine that would automatically populate a landmass with a sprawling city. Dynamically generated elevations are the newest addition to the landscape and could influence gameplay in interesting ways—e.g. missions that require escaping to a mountain hideaway. His goal was to create logical, but not predictable, levels like those found in procedurally generated 2-D games.
American Botanical Council Publishes Revolutionary Analysis Unlocking Mysteries of 500-Year-Old Manuscript Authors Propose Unique New World Origins of Obscure Voynich Manuscript in HerbalGram AUSTIN, Texas, Jan. 20, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- In the 100th issue of its quarterly, peer-reviewed journal, HerbalGram, the nonprofit American Botanical Council published a feature that may change the course of research on an approximately 500-year-old, illuminated text known as the Voynich Manuscript. Written in a curious language that is yet un-deciphered, the enigma of the Voynich has puzzled scholars and mystery enthusiasts since its 1912 discovery by Polish book collector Wilfrid M. Voynich. (Logo: This manuscript, now housed at the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library at Yale University, has elicited enormous interest, resulting in numerous books and Internet sites with no conclusive resolution on the manuscript's origin. HerbalGram's feature article by Arthur O. Dr. "At minimum," Dr. "Dr. SOURCE American Botanical Council
Worldbuilding By Map This article was originally written for people building their own worlds for novel writing, but the process is useful for anyone who wants to create a world and draw a map. Let’s get one thing out of the way right now. A map shouldn’t be pretty. I know what you’re thinking – those posters of Middle Earth are gorgeous. Of course a map should be beautiful. So we won’t be needing photoshop today, we need a pad of scratch paper and a pencil. First of all, think about the ‘world’ you need to build. In your tale there will be nations, city states or power centers of some form. Focus on major terrain at this point – how much coastline and mountain ranges. 1. It’s now time to start our map. 2. But circles aren’t really a map. 3. Now let’s lay in some mountains. 4. Next up, we have rivers. Rivers are also strategically important. 5. Add some hills to the edge of your mountain ranges. When you come back, try the following experiment. Once you have a layout you like, we’ll add cities. 6. Related
The Dyson MegaDelve | Dyson's Dodecahedron 3 Votes The Dyson MegaDelve is a dungeon map that I started in late 2014 and finished in early 2015. It started as a “small” megadungeon and gradually evolved into a 30-map monstrosity. Node Map (click to enlarge) That’s the full list of the maps involved and how they connect. Here’s the maps in question: They come together into something like this: The Whole Mega Delve (click for huge graphic) Share this: Like this: Like Loading... Follow Get every new post delivered to your Inbox. Join 728 other followers Build a website with WordPress.com %d bloggers like this: Szostak Lab: Home We are interested in the chemical and physical processes that facilitated the transition from chemical evolution to biological evolution on the early earth. As a way of exploring these processes, our laboratory is trying to build a synthetic cellular system that undergoes Darwinian evolution. Our view of what such a chemical system would look like centers on a model of a primitive cell, or protocell, that consists of two main components: a self-replicating genetic polymer and a self-replicating membrane boundary. The job of the genetic polymer is to carry information in a way that allows for both replication and variation, so that new sequences that encode useful functions can be inherited and can further evolve. The role of the protocell membrane is to keep these informational polymers localized, so that the functions they encode lead to an advantage in terms of their own replication or survival.
False Machine: STRANGE GRAINS - D&Difying 'The Art Of Not Being Governed' This is everything I could easily D&Dify from 'The Art of Not Being Governed' by James C. Scott. My god Robert E Howard would fucking love this book. I half suspect he came back from the dead and wrote it. “How can I wear the harness of toil And sweat at the daily round, While in my soul forever The drums of Pictdom sound?” "Some subjects were no doubt attracted to the possibilities for trade, wealth, and status available at the court centres, while others, almost certainly the majority, were captives and slaves seized in warfare or purchased from slave-raiders." (He never actually proves that its over 50%) 1. "Virtually all hill peoples have legends claiming that they once had writing and either lost it and it was stolen from them." "The Lahu, for their part, speak of once having known how to write their language and refer to a lost book. "Seven villages came together on the same mountain and swore to jointly oppose their Tai overlord. 2. 3. 4. 6. 7. Story Gamers would *love* this. 8. 9.
2015 Dodecahedron Cartographic Review - ZERObarrier The 2015 Dodecahedron Cartographic Review is an 88-page curated collection of most of the maps and descriptions thereof that appeared on Dyson's Dodecahedron throughout 2015. Designed to be a letter-sized spiral bound book, this digital edition also includes a second version of the book where many of the maps have been resized (larger) to better fit the page once all the text has been removed. Unlike the maps of Dyson's Delves I and Dyson's Delves II, the maps I drew for the Dodecahedron in 2015 were predominantly drawn on letter-sized paper, so a different format of map book was needed for this review of the year's cartography. The PDF edition of these maps is provided as a convenience for readers of the blog and fans of RPG cartography and contains no exclusive content - everything in this PDF can be hunted down on the Dyson's Dodecahedron blog and downloaded at high resolution.
Check out this brilliant virtual version of 17th Century London • News • PC University students have created an impressive 3D representation of 17th Century London set before The Great Fire in 1666. The video, below, is the work of De Montfort University's Pudding Lane Productions and the winning entry in Crysis maker Crytek's Off the Map project. Pudding Lane is second-year students Joe Dempsey, Dominic Bell, Luc Fontenoy, Daniel Hargreaves, Daniel Peacock and Chelsea Lindsey, who used Crytek's CryEngine and historic maps and engravings from the British Library to recreate 17th Century London in stunning virtual detail. Tom Harper, panel judge and curator of cartographic materials at the British Library, said: "Some of these vistas would not look at all out of place as special effects in a Hollywood studio production. "The haze effect lying over the city is brilliant, and great attention has been given to key features of London Bridge, the wooden structure of Queenshithe on the river, even the glittering window casements.
How to make a Fantasy Sandbox Unlike a Traveller Sandbox making a Fantasy Sandbox is less straightforward. This is because Traveller at the stellar level has a uniform geography while a fantasy setting can have any type of geography imaginable including the fantastic like lands floating on shards of a shattered world. If talking a fantasy setting I would do the following Using one page sketch a world or continent mapLabel important regionsWrite one page of background giving no more than a handful of sentences to each region.Pick an area roughly 200 miles by 150 milesGrab a 8.5 by 11 sheet of hex paper. This is being expanded in the following posts. How to Make a Fantasy Sandbox by Robert Conley with layout by Patrick Walsh.