Fun at the Game Master’s Workshop 102: World Building

11 July, 2016

My wife and I have been holding Games Master’s Workshop at Tyche’s Games (in Athens, GA) to try and help people improve their skills and get to know more of the local gaming community.

MapRawYesterday, we did a sequence on world building.  Which covered a variety of subjects including how to make other people’s game worlds your own.  The DelRosso Principle was mentioned, which, shortly started, says make a dramatic declaration to claim a published setting as your own.

The wisdom of coopting and adapting maps from other sources was discussed.

Moving onto building your own world, we emphasized consistency in setting design, making sure that things hang together in a coherent way.  Maybe not to the first glance but eventually if the players want to ask questions you need to have answers that fit together into some sort

of structure.

We also discussed various general methods of world building:

  • Topdown, focusing on the big picture and filling in details as needed.
  • Bottom Up or Ink Blot, building each little piece as needed but the current story and then gradually joining them into a larger setting.
  • Collaborative, where the group as a whole works together to build the world.MapWords

Obviously, there is a certain amount of mixing these together.  And to round things out we  put together a map as a group which is reproduced here in it raw form and with some of the information written o

ut.  “Not a Skull Island” is also “Five Star Island” a ‘vacation’ spot luring tourists to what is totally not a island run by cannibal goblins in disguise.

You can see the files from this session and the 101 session (“So you want to run a campaign?”) here.  And if you are in the area and want to join us for our next session, let me know.




  1. Aw, man, I wish your workshop had been a thing back when I was in Athens! That sounds awesome.

    • It was great fun. And you can always organize your own! You are a font of useful advice on gaming.

  2. Fun and informative, sounds like!

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