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Thread: My Mountains Have Fallen and They Can't Get Up

  1. #21
      Porklet is offline
    Guild Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2007


    Quote Originally Posted by Hawksguard View Post
    You're most welcome, I am glad to be of help. And no, hehe, I'm not a climatologist. I do have a rather intense fascination with the forces of nature and have an insatiable curiosity in understanding "how stuff works," so I'm always looking for new things to learn and how to apply them to my creations. Map making, even the fantastical variety, for me is as much about history, and economics, and politics, and geology, and climatology as it is about geography.
    Very true. I have worked extensively on the cultures, religions, history, etc. of the world, but I have only recently begun to create a concrete physical world to put them in. I've always had hand drawn maps that changed over the years, but I wanted something more substantial so that I could explore its progression. I have to place the mountains, and then I am going to work on the air and water currents and rainfall. Once I get a first draft set-up I am going to post. I'd love to get your feedback.
    "I run away, therefore I am." - Monty "the Python" Descartes

  2. #22
      cantab is offline
    Guild Journeyer
    Join Date
    Jun 2011


    You've got the basics right. A maximum of three plate boundaries meet at a point, which is correct, and it's nice to see hotspots taken into account.

    A first tip: colour-coding your boundaries depending on whether they're ridges, trenches/collisions, or transform/strike slip faults will make the map easier to interpret.

    Can I assume your reference frame - the thing that you consider "still" and measure your plate motions from - is the hotspots? (A sensible choice.)

    A few points:

    If you're going to show plate boundaries in your final map, you may want to think about their shapes. Ridges in particular have a distinctive "stepped" shape, as segments of ridge proper are offset by transform (strike-slip) faults. You can see that here: The ridges should be at right-angles, and the transforms parallel, to the plate motion.

    Trenches can be straight, they can follow a continental edge, or they can have an arced shape with the subducting plate on the convex side. It's OK to have quite oblique subduction.

    Transform faults are typically straight. They can have bends in them though. These bends give either "pull apart basins" or "push up mountains". You have an example of the latter on the B-D boundary.

    You could eliminate the F-I boundary. If you keep it, either make one plate moving faster, or make it a very slowly spreading ridge. (Subduction zones don't tend to go slowly). Similar for A-E.

    You have more large transform boundaries than are on Earth. (I have the same issue with my own WIP tectonics-based map.) The E-F, F-G, and G-K boundaries in particular seem a bit strange. However, if you meet either of the two "growing" cases here: then you can justify those big transforms.

    A plateau somewhere next to the B-C-H mountain range wouldn't be unreasonable (much like the Tibetan plateau).

    I might expect some clearer island chains from hotspots (like the famous Hawaii chain). Not all hotspots produce such neat chains, but many do. The biggest island, and the volcanically active one, is over the hotspot, with progressively older and (generally) smaller islands extending away in the direction of the plate's motion.

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