Thursday, April 23, 2009


Now that I've abandoned the Known World map as a home for Zent-Mer, I have the happy task of creating a new wilderness map.  I'm weighing how much I want to plan out now, and how much I want to leave to random chance and/or development during play.

On the one hand, planning in advance lets me do an awful lot of "stocking" ahead of time.  Starting play with a fully-detailed wilderness area is certainly an attractive proposition.

On the other, it's a lot of work up front.  It's possible that a more organic approach, like generating "unlocated" hex contents and assigning them as the party travels, could be a good compromise.  Maybe with a few large hand-placed landmarks (like oceans, the big mountain ranges and forests, etc.).

I'm also trolling around trying to round up as many random terrain / hex contents / inhabitation generation methods as I can, in order to compare them and arrive at a solution for my campaign.  So far, the 1e DMG, Kellri's (completely indispensable) CDD#4 Old School Encounters Reference, the JG Wilderlands of High Fantasy and Dave Arneson's First Fantasy Campaign are the main sources.  (If you know of any others, hook it up!)  I also have a copy of the 2e-era "Worldbuilder's Guidebook", which takes a slightly more "top-down" approach than I had initially planned, but still could be worth another look.  (One of the better supplements from this era, for my money.)

Once I come up with an overall system I like, the real fun of actually generating this sucker comes in.  Me and the Ravaged Ruins tables are gonna get very cozy for a few minutes.


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