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

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1
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0answers
79 views

What materials/information would I need to construct a gameworld? [closed]

I'm planning on creating my own game world and I was wondering what specifics should I be looking at to help with its accuracy, detail and playability?
23
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6answers
765 views

Am I designing my campaign setting to be too specific?

I'm a first time DM (3.5e), and, being a passionate writer, I decided to create the entire campaign and campaign setting myself. It's been good fun, and I have about 12 pages of (elaborated upon) ...
67
votes
19answers
9k views

I'm creating an original setting for D&D—where do I start?

Creating a new fantasy setting for D&D is daunting but I don't want to use one of the published settings. I have a blank piece of paper in front of me and a whole world to create. My friends want ...
8
votes
3answers
510 views

How do I safely break stereotypes in my games?

In the LARP system I play, there are some stereotypes heavily in-grained into the player base. For instance, goblins are squeaky-voiced, hyperactive, and (often) violent humanoids. These sorts of ...
8
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4answers
1k views

Looking for a nice magic system to convert to FATE

I'm playing around a lot with the FATE system at the moment (particularly with Diaspora) and I'm now looking at how I might apply it to a fantasy setting. What I'm looking for is a nice magic system ...
1
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0answers
148 views

What alignment would the Ancient Roman civilisation have been? [closed]

In our Pathfinder homebrew setting, I'm looking at making a region that borrows parts of the culture of Ancient Rome, including their system of slavery. What alignment would the Ancient Roman nation ...
31
votes
7answers
1k views

Has anyone produced a drop-in well-reasoned economy for a fantasy game?

I've seen so many attempts to justify this or that crazy thing in various fantasy RPG economies, but they don't tend to hold water as far as I've seen. I realize that suspension of disbelief is ...
6
votes
2answers
232 views

Size of a campaign world?

At this moment I am creating a world for my pathfinder game and I have no idea what the world's size should be. I know it ultimately depends on each GM and their group, but some information on the ...
10
votes
3answers
586 views

What setting changes need to be addressed in order to convert Golarion to the E6 variant system?

For those who are confused what E6 is, please go here: E6: The Game Inside D&D I will be running an E6 game in Golarion in a few weeks. Two main assumptions I have made in the E6 version I am ...
36
votes
14answers
2k views

How can GMs make their game worlds more inclusive?

Many published roleplaying settings reflect our own cultural biases, for example, by putting white people in the "core" of the setting with "exotic" (i.e., not white) cultures around the less-detailed ...
13
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3answers
3k 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
599 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
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7answers
2k 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
143 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 ...
21
votes
4answers
725 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 ...
11
votes
6answers
2k 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 ...
13
votes
2answers
387 views

City Services Generation

I'm looking for a way to determine typical numbers of services that would be available for a medieval city/town/village based on population which I can then project into a fantasy setting. (System is ...
9
votes
4answers
582 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 ...
26
votes
6answers
2k 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
2k 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, ...
5
votes
4answers
533 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
421 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 ...
20
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16answers
1k views

Why aren't magocracies and theocracies dominant in D&D settings?

Anyone has (or has links to) well thought-out, logical explanations for why magocracies and theocracies are not the dominant forms of government of D&D worlds? I'd also be really interested in ...
9
votes
4answers
957 views

What's the up side of aquatic campaigns in Pathfinder?

Everything I've found about aquatic campaigns would suggest that they are inherently more difficult than traditional campaigns, for the GM and player both. The Rules Difficulties For one thing, ...
3
votes
9answers
952 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
197 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
265 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 ...
5
votes
3answers
207 views

Incorporating smell, taste, and weather underwater

Related to this question and this question. I am interested in building up the atmosphere of my aquatic campaign, and to do so, I would like to incorporate all the players' senses. But I am at a loss ...
10
votes
2answers
208 views

Mutant Chronicles: Luna City and Moon physics

Okay, this is in fact a bunch of related sub-questions, but I'll try and sum them up in one: How has the physical workings of the Moon -- home to the new central hub of humanity: Luna -- changed in ...
2
votes
3answers
219 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 ...
13
votes
9answers
578 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
255 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
383 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, ...
23
votes
4answers
446 views

Giving a setting a feeling of ancientness

I'm creating a world for my next game and I want it to feel like a very ancient world with multiple fallen empires and wars in it's history. I want to build a very detailed setting and have my players ...
11
votes
5answers
751 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
109 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 ...
15
votes
6answers
396 views

How to make players care about a community

I've built a lot of villages, some towns and a city or two but I've failed to bring them to life and make the PCs feel like they belong there (maybe not much belong but to just make them care about ...
42
votes
6answers
869 views

What are the key considerations to creating compelling environments?

An area I am close to revealing to my players was barren rock, until I realised adding a few kinds of plants and some crystal spires (which have very good reason to be there) took the location from ...
4
votes
2answers
225 views

Evolving a region from war torn to merchant hub

Currently in my planning for my campaign I have a desert region that would make for a great way to travel, except tribes of Monkeys are at war. One side quest I have planned out has the players end ...
20
votes
3answers
455 views

How do you customise swearing to a setting?

Good fantasy books often have 'custom' swearing, and they help provide a more realistic view of the world the campaign takes place in. For instance, in a book where metals are key to magic, a common ...
9
votes
2answers
402 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
560 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 ...
17
votes
7answers
609 views

How do significantly differing male and female lifespans change my setting?

I am currently creating a dryad-themed fantasy setting and want it to feature a matriarchal society. My patriarchal-raised brain (needlessly) needs a reason for why this is so, and so I have created ...
11
votes
5answers
395 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 ...
2
votes
4answers
331 views

How would society adjust if use of fire is reserved for the elite?

This is an extraction of one of the central questions arising from my original (overly broad) question. In a society where the use of fire has been restricted, due to religious indoctrination, to the ...
14
votes
9answers
1k views

How to have a realistic set of languages without making adventuring prohibitively difficult?

"Do you speak Common?" "Of course I do! Everyone speaks Common..." My group is starting a somewhat experimental campaign. We're using a setting that is neither canon (e.g. described in a book) nor ...
17
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
646 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
251 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, ...