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Sinnyo
05-11-2010, 03:18 PM
Median is the working title of an MMO (massively-multiplayer online) game I'm designing, largely as a portfolio exercise. It's also an excuse to get myself mapping again, as I've gleefully given myself whole worlds to design! As this progresses I will be generating gameplay flow diagrams on top of these (such as where a character can travel to find appropriate challenges), but I hope I can borrow your experienced eyes over what lays beneath. It's worth noting that while the maps will help me organise levels and help players navigate large spaces, this is a third-person game involving single characters. It's not a strategy game, and so the map won't guide the play too much. :)

I've started with Earth as it is a familiar place; this is before I delve into complete fantasy for mapping a sample alien world. As is probably customary for a science fiction interpretation of the world, the sea levels and ice sheets have altered a bit! Chunks of the planet have also been the victims of extraterrestrial collisions and man-made catastrophes, causing some regions to flood or be sunk into new lakes.


http://www.raygun-gothic.net/median/20100510earthmap_thumb.jpg (http://www.raygun-gothic.net/median/20100510earthmap.png)


Earth as seen in Median has endured a sea level rise of around 100m. This isn't reflected with great accuracy on my map, but its changes are informed by projections from the University of Sydney (http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/in_depth/629/629/7278084.stm#).
Some areas of the 'western world' have managed to restrict flooding from a sea level rise of around 100 metres. Since the game is a retro-futuristic sci-fi one with rayguns, jetpacks and more, I'm going to put this scientific impossibility down to force fields for now!
Since humanity has ventured quite far into the cosmos by now, only a few distinct nations remain on the Earth, formed mostly of economic alliances; I'll come to political boundaries once the geography's sorted.
Despite the British government's fevered attempts to stem the flooding of Great Britain's coast, London has been lost with Birmingham becoming a new model city for the island. This has happened all over the world, but of these, only Birmingham is an active level.
Many cities, including playable regions in Panama and Tokyo, have been rebuilt upon the sea's surface rather than relocating to dry land.
The Falkland islands have essentially become one landmass under encroachment from the Antarctic ice sheet; Antarctica itself is simply left off as it's not visited.
The cities I've marked here are simply those which stood out to me as distinctive zones in which to play; a few of these are likely to be culled as I work out the details, such as how long the player will spend on Earth before venturing out into Median's galaxy.


I'm sure I missed a few points off, but oh well. Mostly what I'm trying to achieve in this map is something believable, but not necessarily accurate and not very detailed. When a player visits a planet they'll be looking to get down to a spaceport and get on with the game. If the ice sheets look drastically improper, or if I have vast regions of desert wrong, then I'd love to fix those before I start adding depth to the map. I only had Google Earth to go by when determining all this, and satellite photo colouring can be misleading!

Lastly, I apologise if I've nuked or flooded your house in this imagined future. It's nothing personal.