GURPS · Worked Example

An Example of World Creation – Stage 7

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

Some Regions to the far North

Last time: roll, roll, roll…. Ok, here’s what we’ve got:

Worked Example - Stage 7

Here is a bigger, zoomable version of the map.

This is all “Polar” territory, so the World Map is obviously reaching right up into the highest latitudes now.

Arctic Terrain
Brrr…..  it’s pretty cold up here!

I don’t have a good icon for Arctic terrain, so I just left those four far Northern territories blank, declaring that for the purposes of those four Regions, white space means ice and snow.

Most of what we just added is just ice and tundra, which is only to be expected this far North, but we’ve got a couple of interesting features.

winter alpenglow along the Puyallup Ridge Trail, Mount Tahoma Tr
A tiny patch of Alpine Forest, high up, overlooking the polar tundra...

In the far North, in the center, there’s a single Tiny Region of Alpine Forest – check it out!  It’s easy to miss.  Yes, that’s Civilized – not just semi-civilized, like the neighbors – so civilized that it even has its own Town.  What’s that little patch of Civilization doing way up there, perched high in the mountains, looking out over the tundra?  Since it’s an alpine forest, my first thought is that it’s the home of some Arctic elves – that could be fun.  But then I imagine all the “Santa’s workshop!” jokes….

In the North-East, some of the Arctic regions are inhabited by semi-civilized folk – perhaps the classic fantasy Burly Barbarians From the Frozen North? Or more realistically, reindeer herders?  They have a town of their own, anyway.  It’ll be intriguing to see how that area pans out.

First Part: Complete!  On to Part Two…

We now have a fairly large geographical area mapped out.  Importantly, we’ve mapped all the way out to the natural barriers that would prevent PCs residing in or around the starting Region from having reliable information about Regions not already on the map – basically, our map extends as far as the PCs’ own knowledge is likely to do, when they start the game.  That means we can safely stop expanding it.

Now, instead of expanding the map further, we can start filling in the details.

I say “details”, but many of them are crucial, like who lives where.   Do those Civilized Regions in the center of the map belong to Humans?  Elves?  Walrus-men?  Is that Monstrous kingdom in the swamp ruled by Orcs?  Or Dragons?  Slug-beasts?  I must admit I’m quite intrigued by this layout so far – it has many monstrous Regions – far more than the system usually generates.   I’ll be very interested to see what it looks like once we determine who lives where.

I’m also going to determine the theme of each Realm or Region, and start naming things…

So if you’ve stuck with us this far, then you’re in for a treat – things are just about to get interesting!

LATER EDIT: Here is the next post in this series.

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