Friday, January 23, 2009

Part Three: Decision, Decisions

Before we get down to the nuts and bolts of drawing maps, we need to make some high-level decisions about our new campaign setting. I am going to provide them without much background comment, but I will explore that further in future posts.

Campaign Setting: The East March
Geography/Climate: Similar to Bavaria/Southeastern Germany

For the campaign’s initial home base, I plan to map out an area of approximately 2500 square miles (50 miles X 50 miles) around a settlement that I am calling Ostburgh. You will note the ‘Germanic’ influence already and this is intentional. I always find it easier and more comfortable to lean a little on the real world, especially when it comes to subjects like names. Pure fantasy names always sound a little contrived to me. I don’t intend to go overboard with it, however, and I won’t try to follow any actual German language rules for naming or whatever.

Of course, there are lots of other decisions to make. I haven’t touched on religion, political structure, prevalence and location of non-human settlements and lots more. For now, here are some ideas that I have been knocking around:

  • There was a broad-reaching empire that ended some 500 years ago because of a great catastrophe.
  • Political structure is a ‘fantasy light’ version of feudalism with possible manorial system.
  • The East March is a border region between civilized lands and the frontier.
  • No more than a dozen major deities. One or two prominently worshipped in the region.
  • Pockets of all major demihuman races in the region, including dwarves, elves, halflings and gnomes.
  • That’s about it for now. The next post should go up on Monday, January 26th. At that time we will make some more decisions about our new campaign setting and prepare to draw a regional map. I would love to hear some feedback from you the reader about this series! Comment with your likes/dislikes, what you would like to see, etc.

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