GURPS · Worked Example

An Example of World Creation – Stage 1 – The Starting Region

…. in which I begin to create a whole new world!  ASTOUNDING!

Classic Wizard

(Note: this is the first post in my Example of World Creation series.   For a full index to the series, head here).

Assembling the Materials

Let’s begin exactly where the system tells us to: by assembling the necessary materials with which to make a world map.  Normally I’d get a huge sheet of paper for this – I find around 2 foot by 3 foot works well – but I can’t scan something that big, so for this online project, I’m going to make rough map using software – specifically Autorealm, a free mapping tool.

I’ve never used Autorealm before, so the map may end up looking pretty cheesy – but it’s just a mock-up, so never mind.  I can make a prettier map later, when I’m no longer revising everything as I go.

Now I just need 3d6, and I’m ready to create!

Creating The Starting Region:

I begin by creating the Region that the PCs will be in when the campaign starts.

Size – I start by rolling for its size – and roll a 7 on 3d6.  Interesting already! It looks like the PCs are going to start of in a Region that’s “Tiny” – only a day or so across.

Hmmm… maybe there’s something special about this Region, which explains why it counts as its own Region, even though it’s so small… and maybe that’s why the PCs have come here?  We’ll see!

Climate and Terrain Type – Since I’m trying to create a fairly standard Tolkienesque fantasy map, I’m going to play it safe and declare the climate Coastal, as per the advice here.

Map - Terrain Symbols - edited down - hills
These hills are alive with the sound of music.  True.

Moving on to terrain type, I roll 1d6 and get a 4.  Consulting the “Coastal” column, I see that 4 means “Hills.”  So, we start in a tiny, Hilly Region, somewhere within striking distance of the coast, but not right next to the sea.  Perhaps you can see the sea from the hilltops?  Or just taste the salt on the breeze?

Level of Civilization – Now, how settled is this Region? I roll 3d6 and get a 14 – Wilderness!  Interesting.  What are the PCs doing out here in the middle of nowhere?

(Note that because the Region is Tiny, I could have chosen either to add or subtract 2 to my roll here, but in this case it wouldn’t have made any difference – it’s “Wilderness” either way.)

Settlements – Tiny Regions of Wilderness never contain Towns or Cities, so we’re done here!  There may be a small village, a castle, or a Tavern In The Middle of Nowhere – but there’s no reason to determine that right now.

We’ll add some more details later, but for now the campaign’s starting Region is done.  Here’s what our map looks like so far:

Worked Example - Stage 1

Pretty basic!  1 hex here is approximately 1 day’s travel, in decent terrain – so in fact, this “Hill” Region would a bit longer than a day to cross.

In the next post, we’ll determine what the neighboring Regions are…


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s