The process of creating a complete, coherent and convincing world to use as a setting for RPG adventures.

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15
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3answers
4k views

Does anyone have any templates for Scrivener?

I want to start using Scrivener to plan a game and am looking for some templates for characters, locations, encounters, etc.
14
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3answers
700 views

How should a GM best handle a lack of canonical lore in a pre-existing world?

Occasionally, players may want to play in a setting which does not have a detailed canonical lore. Consider, for instance, many computer RPG worlds; their lore tends to be very localized, however, ...
20
votes
7answers
3k views

Where can I find resources to create a realistic castle dungeon?

Shortly, I will send my PCs into a castle ruin, and I plan on them spending some time there, possibly to refurbish the castle and claim it as their own. I want to make this castle a realistic place, ...
2
votes
2answers
170 views

What resources should I use to create a mod for d20 Modern?

This is a tangent off of my question about Looking for a Space marine RPG similar to Starship Troopers (the Novel) where there were some good suggestions about systems to use or modify to meet my ...
22
votes
4answers
864 views

Location generation system?

I tend to GM campaigns where players travel a lot. Whether it is through D&D planes or in a space-opera setting, they are bound to visit a lot of very different and varied places. And I have to ...
18
votes
6answers
6k views

Fantasy economy: how to design a deep, sophisticated crafting system?

I want to construct an immersive, complex and functional fantasy economy in order to inform my world-building process. I'm interested in finding a working economic model and applying that into low-...
10
votes
4answers
1k views

Investigating suspects and evidence in a D&D3.x based world

First of all, I know there's been a question titled Crime Investigation in a fantasy world. My question is only partially similar to that, though. The problem: In a DnD3.x based world (including ...
27
votes
6answers
3k views

Fortifying & Defending a shop in a city

When they're not adventuring, the PCs in my campaign own a magic item shop in a very large city. They have a staff, inventory, marketing, and in general it operates like you'd expect an item shop to ...
10
votes
4answers
3k views

Are the orcs of the D&D core canon not above eating sentient humanoids?

Are the orcs of the D&D core canon cannibals, i.e. not above eating sentient humanoids? As far as I can remember, Tolkien's orcs seem to have no qualms about doing so (thanks for the link, Flamma)...
5
votes
4answers
924 views

Is it possible to run a simulationist sandbox game? [closed]

Context I grew up playing video games like Morrowind or Baldur's Gate where all the content is already there and all you do is go out there and interact with it, with all the limitations of having a ...
11
votes
4answers
506 views

Is there a game that places a similar amount of emphasis on the creation of worlds by player characters as the Myst series?

A major part of the premise of the Myst series is that a number of characters in the setting can 'write' worlds (mostly ones you could walk across in a few minutes). The gameplay of the series is ...
3
votes
9answers
2k views

Can we add trains in D&D without breaking the world

Question upfront: Is there a way I can add trains to the core world of D&D 3.5 (Greyhawk/Oerth) without “messing up” the world or its economies? Reason: 1st: Mainly, it makes no sense to me ...
7
votes
4answers
301 views

Resources for designing aquatic campaigns

General world building information is easy to come by, but I have trouble finding information about underwater environments in AD&D 2e. While I am open to non-AD&D resources, I would prefer ...
13
votes
4answers
363 views

How do I make Locations important?

This is a two-part question about Locations in Fiasco: How do I make Locations important to the story? In every Fiasco game that I have played so far, the story has been driven by the Needs of the ...
2
votes
3answers
343 views

Underground as an engaging environment? [closed]

The fantasy underground, the underworld, the caves, the depths ... that's a whole new world below the surface ... ... or, at least, it should be the new, exciting world below surface. I'm mentioning ...
14
votes
9answers
885 views

How do you make a new NPC likable?

The players in my campaign will soon rescue a woman who's been trapped in an awful dimension (think Jumanji, if that helps) for ten years, and bring her home. After 2 sessions, they'll realize that ...
5
votes
1answer
330 views

How can established settings contact each other, and are there rules about it?

I've actually had some of my questions answered browsing through the forums; however, I wanted to address some issues that may come of my conclusions! First off, I haven't DM'd since the first ...
14
votes
10answers
2k views

A game where death is permanent?

I'm running a D&D 4e campaign where the underlying story arc features Orcus and his followers. It starts with a run-in with a Cult of Orcus, and gradually escalates with the party finding that the ...
2
votes
3answers
786 views

What are the best RPG bestiary books containing monsters inspired by East Asian cultures? [closed]

The setting for my current game has a mix of cultures and influences from the Far East, and I am looking for sources for monsters inspired by Chinese/East-Asian cultures, such as China, Japan, ...
12
votes
5answers
930 views

In a high magic setting, how should I introduce “unnatural” magic?

I am going to run a game of 13th Age, which is pretty high magic - the industry of the world is primarily enhanced by ritual magic (wind elemental bind to sailing ships, rituals ensuring good weather ...
3
votes
0answers
128 views

Effect of natural environment on the development of cultures [closed]

Let there be this quantitative question: how do the specifics of a natural environment influence the development of a newborn culture? Please note: I'm not looking for any deus ex machinas, divine ...
9
votes
1answer
721 views

Fantasy accent and dialect, or how do I speak like Tom Hanks in Cloud Atlas?

For example, inhabitants of Planescape setting say things like "chant" for news or gossip, "berk" or "cutter" for a kind of adventurer, "barmy" for crazy, etc. I want to portray a guy from a far away ...
5
votes
5answers
937 views

In depth world building. Making connections [closed]

I was reading an article (I lost the page due to Internet failure and don't have the link) on world building and it was talking about in depth world building, the article begins by talking about ...
12
votes
5answers
481 views

I want to design and write a setting book. Where do I start?

I want to design and write a professional quality setting book for FATE 3.0, with the possibility of adding custom mechanics later and turning it into a full on game of it's own. I have the outline of ...
18
votes
11answers
1k views

How do you keep the party on the map?

I'm running a fairly sandbox game, where the party can wander around easily from place to place. When the party visits areas I've prepared something for, they generally have a good time. When they ...
12
votes
10answers
736 views

Flat or flattish earth issues

What major effects would having a flat or rather flattish earth instead of a planet on a game world? (Technological, social, physical etc.) Mind you, I'm not looking for fully detailed scientific ...
8
votes
2answers
325 views

How to make rituals a part of everyday life

I would like to know how to make it clear that little, non-magical rituals such as a blessing before eating, drawing water, harvesting grain, starting a fire and the like are a part of everyday life, ...
4
votes
1answer
393 views

How can I represent the use of fire being misrepresented in a campaign?

This is an extraction of one of the central questions arising from my original (overly broad) question. I would like to know how to best represent the concept that there is a god who is, through a ...
5
votes
2answers
511 views

Looking for help on expanding my campaign concept while avoiding railroading

I have split this into two more specific questions: How can I represent the use of fire being misrepresented in a campaign? and How to make rituals a part of everyday life. Below is the broad-strokes ...
12
votes
5answers
1k views

Dark Ages/Middle Ages marriage age?

I am trying to keep a fair degree of verisimilitude in my fantasy games (outside the obviously fantastical elements like magic and dragons). As part of that, the normal/average marriage age for ...
5
votes
4answers
396 views

World Development - A Fresh Start

If this is not the place for this type of question, redirect me - I am new here, and apologize in advance. So. My group is looking for something new. Dungeons and Dragons 3.5 in my own setting is our ...
5
votes
1answer
219 views

How to adapt a 3e community-building system for a larger-scale use in a 4e game?

This question is a follow up to Point buy/structured system for cooperative 4e campaign building?. I've found a system that is quite close to what we want/need, but there's a catch: it's for 3e and ...
5
votes
2answers
379 views

Point buy/structured system for cooperative 4e campaign building?

Our group is currently building a campaign world (one nation per player) for the Pillars of the State campaign (as suggested in the DMG2 somewhere around page 170). Today we encountered the "problem" ...
7
votes
4answers
518 views

How do I get my dresden files players involved in city creation?

I've tried to involve my players in city creation a few times through the course of the game, usually whenever they are about to finish up a story arc, but I usually all I get are just get a few ...
13
votes
6answers
855 views

Regional Resource Management and Trade Rules

I've been looking at TSR's old Birthright setting lately, searching for an easy way to quantify trade between political entities. I'm thinking about ways for a city or region or planet to develop ...
6
votes
1answer
712 views

Stats for a Sorcerer King in 4E's Dark Sun?

I am in the middle of building a campaign and part of it takes place in the Athas. I am wanting to present the party with an actual threat towards the end of their stay in the hellacious world of Dark ...
8
votes
4answers
2k views

List of (small northern US town) occupations?

Let's say I'd like to run a campaign inspired by David Lynch's Twin Peaks, and would like to learn a bit about the everyday life of such towns outside what's been presented on the show - as a first ...
13
votes
7answers
567 views

Looking for resource material for a dream world

I have started working on a world that is set in a dream realm. I am using it to create one-off gaming sessions that I can do in a single day and pull in any characters that are currently being used. ...
9
votes
2answers
627 views

Resources containing practical, yet non-combat, non-adventuring D&D spells

Continuing the train of thoughts emerging from the discussion of this previous question (about magocracies and theocracies in DnD), I'd like to know if there are any good official or unofficial ...