Building a Setting

Dragon Age map

Setting Specifics

Last week Ryan wrote about using a published setting which, I’ll be honest, is something I haven’t really done. World-building and myth-making is one of my favourite parts of roleplaying games, so even when I GMed World of Darkness, I made a bunch of changes to the setting. There’s a lot of work involved in it, and my D&D world has changed a lot over the years, usually from me inventing things from whole cloth and then making them fit after the fact. I’m not going to say that’s a best practice, but it’s also not necessary to invent all of the nitty-gritty of everywhere in a setting for one campaign. If the players aren’t going to go there, it’s a place of rumour and wonder, and doesn’t really need to be filled in. All that said, these are the three things I do when I’m sitting down to create a setting, even for a pickup game.
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Place and Space in RPGs

Setting Specifics

Geographers spend a lot of time thinking about space and place, and all GMs are geographers, whether we know it or not. When you’re creating a world, a dungeon, an adventure, or even just a bar, the difference between space and place can be really essential, because it can help you shift the direction of the game or help the players out with hooks. So today I’ll talk about what the difference is, and how you can use it to create a more focused world.

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Best of Times, Worst of Times

candle

Setting Specifics

I’ve spoken with a few people about some of the content of the wiki posts, particularly the ones in the past few weeks. There are elements of those cultures’ histories which are upsetting, and there are very good questions about why I would include those elements rather than leaving them out. I think things like apply to a lot of other fantasy settings, and ¬†wanted to give the topic an appropriate amount of consideration.

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Setting Specifics: Yours Is to Reason Why

Shrine

The settings of roleplaying games contain all kinds of strange and wonderful weirdness, whether that’s a travelling fortress carved out of an iceberg, or a strange bakery run by a retired spy from the OSS. The existence of these kinds of things is often what makes the world interesting and distinct from everyday life or even other realms of fantasy. But the most important thing about them isn’t that these kinds of things take up space in your fictional realm, but why they do so. Creating the reasons can give a setting depth, and ultimately make the game more immersive.¬† Read more