View Full Version : Resources for worldbuilding - geography, climate

12-06-2012, 08:55 AM
--> A little while ago I stumbled across this free online textbook, "Fundamentals of Physical Geography" by two researchers at the University of British Columbia.

The FUNDAMENTALS OF PHYSICAL GEOGRAPHY (http://www.physicalgeography.net/fundamentals/contents.html)

I've found it to be an excellent resource for worldbuilding, and it's written in a way that makes it easy to grasp the concepts even if (like me) you aren't that proficient at science and math. It takes you all the way from the origins of the universe and the earth through to climates, ecosystems and the evolution of various flora and fauna. The nice thing from a worldbuilding perspective is how it breaks out the workings of various systems into separate sections, so if you need to work on rivers for instance, it's easy to find the info. The diagrams and animations are also excellent.

It's free and available as on online resource and a downloadable ebook. There's also a glossary and some other things. I highly recommend it!

--> My other favorite resource, geared specifically towards climate workings, is the Climate Cookbook.

The Climate Cookbook (http://jc.tech-galaxy.com/bricka/climate_cookbook.html)

Geoff has a page on creating planets which is helpful, but this section I love. It's a step-by-step guide to building working climates for fictional worlds. I use it together with the Fundamentals ebook as a backup reference.

--> For a source of inspiration, I like Chris Wayan's Planetocopia page.

THE WORLD DREAM BANK: PLANETOCOPIA (http://www.worlddreambank.org/P/PLANETS.HTM)

Chris has built a multitude of fictional planets and alternate earths, each exploring different issues in worldbuilding. Maps, information on the native species and various sentient peoples is available for each world. It's a fun and helpful site to explore.

12-06-2012, 08:27 PM
Thanks for posting the links :) Have some rep :D I will be wading through these as time permits.

12-07-2012, 12:00 PM
Thanks for the rep! :) Glad you like the links - I've found them very helpful.

The Doge
12-29-2012, 07:01 PM
A great resource! Thanks for sharing.

03-14-2013, 02:31 PM
I wanted to share something, too. This is a 37-page pdf "A Magical Society: Guide to Mapping", a preview for the book "A Magical Society: Ecology and Culture", but those 37 pages can be used as a stand alone and it is a good starting point for everyone who wants to create a world from scratch, using tectonics, mountains and wind to form climates.
Free download from E23 Steve Jackson Games (http://e23.sjgames.com/item.html?id=XRPFREE2), no login/account required.

03-14-2013, 03:01 PM
I recently picked up the Kobold Guide to World Building which includes essays by Keith Baker, Wolfgang Baur, David "Zeb" Cook, Jeff Grubb, Scott Hungerford, Chris Pramas, Janet Silverstein, Michael Stackpole, Steve Winter, and our own Jonathan Roberts (Torstan). These are essays rather than a woldbuilding toolkit, but it's all good stuff. I see that my development of the World of Kaidan, fits the premise of the essays, even though I never read it, prior to that creation.

08-10-2014, 04:19 PM
Sorry for the thread necromancy here; the Climate Cookbook link above gives a 404 -- does anyone have a copy, or a link to another version somewhere?

08-10-2014, 04:27 PM

Thessik Faean
09-28-2014, 06:46 PM
This was literally exactly what I was looking for when I joined this forum! Thanks, bro.

Greason Wolfe
10-20-2014, 02:31 AM
There is an archived version of the climate cookbook located