Purpose-Based Location Design

(Yet another for RPG Blog Carnival.)
Locations don’t come naturally to a lot of people. Sure, they might have one feature they want to play with, or a very vague idea of outline, but the rest is the geographical equivalent of a probabilistic haze. Honestly, that’s normal. We don’t have to know everything. But we can [...]

Impractical Applications: A Room With a Shouldn’t

I talked earlier this week about can, can’t and shouldn’t in terms of how locations affect characters’ actions. There are a lot of potential examples for this, but the main one that comes to mind for me was a long time ago in my game, when the group went after Zora for the first time.
The [...]

Can, Can’t, and Shouldn’t: Three Ways Location Shapes Behavior

This is another post for RPG Blog Carnival. Thinking about locations seems to bring out the best in my inspiration.
Locations have many different effects on the characters who occupy them: physical, metaphysical, emotional, you name it. But one of the biggest effects a well-designed tactical environment creates is a change to behavior. Particularly, it creates [...]

Battlemap? What Battlemap?

When I looked over the prompts for this month’s RPG Blog Carnival (Location, Location, Location, hosted at Campaign Mastery), one of the first that stood out to me was “How do you represent a location if you don’t have a matching battlemap?” It’s not that I’ve never had that problem, just that I’ve never seen [...]

Wednesday Night Writing Exercise: Snowfall

For this month, in honor of this month’s RPG Blog Carnival, I’m focusing my writing exercises on locations, particularly the descriptions thereof. Or at least, such was the plan. This one got away from me a little, focusing not so much on the place itself as on the mood and on the weather—a fair deal, [...]

Perfect Locations: Marring Perfection

(Do I even need to tell you what prompted this post?)
When last seen, the broken walls of the old buildings had shimmered in the starlight, haunted by the soft strings and fluting of the lone musician; now the musician is gone, and in the sunlight the walls are merely ruined stone. The carnival last night [...]

Perfect Locations: Who’s There?

My participation in RPG Blog Carnival: Fantastic Locations continues!
Light levels in a scene may be one of the most subtle ways of creating the mood for the perfect version of a location, but they’re not the most counterintuitive way; that honor goes to the people who create a location. After all, people aren’t part of [...]

Perfect Locations: Seeing the Light

This series was written for RPG Blog Carnival: Fantastic Locations.
When I used yesterday’s post to introduce the idea of the perfect version of a location, one of the mood-contributing factors I discussed was light. It’s easy to forget, as an element; we’re used to always having at least some around us, and to not being [...]

Perfect Locations

This one’s back to writing for RPG Blog Carnival. I love the way it makes me think about aspects of the theme I wouldn’t have looked into.
One of the things that a lot of people forget about making locations, fantastic or otherwise, is that the locations themselves are in a constant state of flux. The [...]

Ravyn Freewrites: Location? Location!

More for RPG Blog Carnival, or at least inspired by it. This is my brain on poetic when mixing having just finished The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms with knowing location design is on the topic list in the very near future.
The root of a world is “What if”.
No, wait, that’s not quite right. The root of [...]