View Full Version : New Campaign Setting concept...ideas?

05-14-2006, 08:52 PM
I've been taking in a BUNCH of inspiration and my current campaign world is kinda unpolished, yet well used...which makes it hard to insert/modify/polish since continuity is important to players.

My inspiration for this new world comes from the following: World of Warcraft, Elder Scrolls Oblivion, Stephen Kings Dark Tower series, Rhapsody's Emerald Sword Saga (awesome stuff)...just a mish mash of inspirations that will wipe out and replace my current campaign setting and will START polished and finalized...since there's so much inspirational material mixed with my own imagination I'm hopin git will end up quite original.

So anyway, without just blabbin away...here's the idea.

A world that was previously inhabited by a race of humanoids. Their lives revolved around ritual magic and they discovered through oracle and various other ritual divinations that the world was about to fall apart. The core of the world was overheating and about to cause a world sundering explosion that would obliterate everything.

Realizing that this would end their society they decided to put together all of the elders and powerful ritual magicians in a last ditch effort to reverse the situation...which failed...and served to accellerate the process causing quakes and faultlines across the planet to begin to separate. They gathered themselves into one last ritual and as the planet began to crumble they managed to open up a magical rift where the core of the planet used to be...this rift forced large chunks of the planet outwards from the center, but also created a sort of magical black hole that had an immense amount of gravity, just enough to hold the chunks of the planet in place, floating there.

Only problem was...the damage was already done...Most of the inhabitants of the planet were dead or severely wounded...all of the elders died from the expulsion of so much magical energy. Over the next few years, the planet became uninhabited yet the magical rift core held the large and small chunks of the world hovering in place.

Several hundred years later spelljamming voyagers discovered the planet (spelljammer rules in this campaign don't include crystal spheres and phlogiston though...I keep it simple) and began reinhabiting it and thats where the campaign sits.

Now I know its kinda hokey and the whole sundering process hasn't been really written out to make a lot of sense...I still have to actually do the polishing I mentioned, but the point is I'm startign from scratch so I GET to polish it...

Now to keep this thread on topic with mapping...imagine if you will a global map in perhaps equirectangular projection...but where there would normally be oceans there is instead empty space, with a magical rift at the core...a world thats still spherical, but full of empty space between continents...where there would be beach, there's a drop off and if you fall off, you get sucked into the rift.

What say ye? Any of these ideas stupid? Any ideas need more ideas?

05-15-2006, 07:11 AM
That's one heck of a start already. :)

What application(s) do you think you'll use to map that out? It sounds like the layer effects in Photoshop could help with the rift background and depth perception...


05-15-2006, 07:26 AM
Heh, thanks :D

Well, I started with a FT setting that I liked, and exported it...I got a bunch of island continents and set the highest peak to 30000, lowest depth at 0...this made an interesting look...where there would be ocean in FT, there was just blackness...perfect.

Exporting it to CC2 after tweaking the export quite a bit, I got something I liked...moved some of the islands apart and kinda evenly spaced them to account for drift and whatnot...Now I'm going to probably start CC2ing in details (If I wait I can do this in CC3) enough to outline locations of cities and ruins and whatnot...

Then I can export that to Photoshop and start working on a way to portray the empty space/rift core.

I do know I'm going to make a 3d version of the world in 3d studio max...That way I can really demonstrate the way the rift core is holding the chunks together, and I can show some semblance of atmosphere. I'm looking forward to it...

Right now I'm stuck on a name for this world :(

05-15-2006, 09:34 AM
Right now I'm stuck on a name for this world :(

I usually hit the Greek and Latin dictionaries for stuff like that. Maybe you could derive a name from the Latin phrase for "blasted into its component atoms."

Only language geeks could figure out what you did, and they'd feel like they're intellectually superior for recognizing it, while admiring you for being so literate. It's a win-win situation.

05-15-2006, 12:00 PM
Well, Hoseman, my moderator and also someone who will be participating in the game this campaign setting sits in will be around shortly to add his two cents...I think we might use this thread as a planning thread.

Also, I do encourage all members to use this particular sub-forum as a place to bring your campaigns together as a whole, as long as the emphasis stays on mapping.

I'm still kinda hung on whether or not to use the FT map or just lay down my own continent islands...since then I'd have more control over interior water bodies, since there's no oceans...and I can't get FT to generate good lakes.

05-15-2006, 12:01 PM


just kidding.

get it...sunder...under...underworld...sunderworld...h ar....har har.

03-12-2007, 01:00 PM
Perhaps since the world the inhabitants knew it as is gone, they no longer refer to the world as a whole entity, and instead refer to the remaining "islands" via a location's name - The Voidlands or something like that.

03-13-2007, 08:19 AM
I actually abandoned this project because it too closely resembled hollow world in concept, so I didn't want to be a ripoff...I am working on another one thats a bit more traditional, but it has its uniqueness. I'll start a thread eventually.

Sir Alain
03-13-2007, 01:07 PM
Right now I'm stuck on a name for this world :(

I've been in the same funk for a number of years now in creatiing my world. Funny thing is, I just discovered it sort of on accident recently. I have a dictionary of Celtic place names and heroes, a regular 'who's-who' in Celtic mythology. I found a name that means essentially the same thing in old Gaulish as my last name means in German. (I'll keep it to myself for now, copyright issues and all) At first I thought about using it for a character name, but realized it fits perfectly as a world name.

Ya gotta love the irony, my own imaginary world named after..... ME! :D

06-01-2007, 06:31 PM
Sounds sorta like the world I was working on. A moon loaded with a make-believe ore was mined out by an advanced alien race. The moon shattered and the shards fell into the upper atmosphere of the gas giant it orbited. The ore was energized by the descent somehow and defied gravity, causing the shards to hover and become stable.

Life blooms and evolves eventually and you have a campaign setting in a vast airy wilderness. =) Someday I'll finish writing that one up.

Big Mac
10-17-2010, 04:40 PM
I actually abandoned this project because it too closely resembled hollow world in concept, so I didn't want to be a ripoff...I am working on another one thats a bit more traditional, but it has its uniqueness. I'll start a thread eventually.

I think it is a real shame that you abandoned this world. I'm a big fan of Spelljammer and I don't think I've seen a world quite like this in SJ canon. Obviously it is only a seed, and you need to solve things like the water-cycle of a world where the seas would vanish and rivers would dump water into a black hole. But I think it has a ton of promise and you could tie your solutions into your backstory.

Hollow World is a world on the inside of a hollow planet, while this is a normal planet that essentially has a black hole instead of a core and void instead of sea. That is a totally different starting point, so I really wouldn't see it as a rip off. (It might look more like a rip off if your societies were all based on the Gazetters, from Classic D&D, but you don't seem to have done much yet, so I would have thought that you could backtrack and go in another direction without too much trouble.)

BTW: If you ever do decide to restart this, and don't want to fill this thread up with RPG stats and stuff like how your world disaster fits in with SJ's First Unhuman War and other events, maybe you could split the work between Cartographer's Guild (where you can concentrate on the maps) and another forum (where you can talk in great detail about the geeky crunchy stuff). ;)

10-17-2010, 05:00 PM
Hmmm thread necro!!