Hatrack River
Home   |   About Orson Scott Card   |   News & Reviews   |   OSC Library   |   Forums   |   Contact   |   Links
Research Area   |   Writing Lessons   |   Writers Workshops   |   OSC at SVU   |   Calendar   |   Store
E-mail this page
Hatrack River Writers Workshop Post New Topic  Post A Reply
my profile login | register | search | faq | forum home

  next oldest topic   next newest topic
» Hatrack River Writers Workshop » Forums » Open Discussions About Writing » World Building Software - Your experience?

   
Author Topic: World Building Software - Your experience?
genevive42
Member
Member # 8714

 - posted      Profile for genevive42   Email genevive42         Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
One of the biggest things lacking in the first draft of my fantasy novel is world creation. I am looking at Fractal Terrains Pro and Campaign Cartographer 3 to help me create maps and such of my world.

Has anyone used these programs? What was your experience? Would you recommend them or is there something else you've found that's better?

Are there any programs that, after you've created your maps, can tell you, "the distance from Town A to Town B would take x amount of time by horse, on foot", etc.?

There is also a City Designer that comes bundled with the above programs. Do you know if there is any way to link political and historical info to the cities? For example, "Town A's governor is Mr.Soandso. There was a devastating fire last year and this is where the Mage Guild has its annual meeting." Are there any programs that do this?

Thanks for any input.


Posts: 1928 | Registered: Jul 2009  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Kitti
Member
Member # 7277

 - posted      Profile for Kitti   Email Kitti         Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
I don't know anything really about world-building software, but I'd be surprised if any world-building computer program could also give you an accurate estimate of how long it would take to get from point A to point B. There are just too many variables, even assuming the program could take general terrain (flat, hilly, mountainous, boggy, sandy) into account.

E.g. Are you walking slow or fast? How many hours a day are you traveling? What time of year is it and how much daylight is there in a day? Can you travel at night? Is the road muddy, snowy, dry? How much does your cart weigh and how many horses are pulling it? How good are the roads or are there even roads? How fast is your horse, and do you care if it's alive or dead at the end of your journey? And that's just off the top of my head.

P.S. Edited to add - I'm apparently in a very cynical mood tonight. I'd be thrilled to be proved wrong. Anyone?

[This message has been edited by Kitti (edited October 19, 2009).]


Posts: 715 | Registered: Nov 2007  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
mikemunsil
Member
Member # 2109

 - posted      Profile for mikemunsil   Email mikemunsil         Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
http://wiki.libertyhallwriters.org/doku.php?id=exercises:writing_exercises

and

http://wiki.libertyhallwriters.org/doku.php?id=howto:worldbuilding#software

Hope this is helpful.


Posts: 2710 | Registered: Jul 2004  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
genevive42
Member
Member # 8714

 - posted      Profile for genevive42   Email genevive42         Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Thanks mikemunsil. Those are great resources! I've already bookmarked them and created a big fat file folder for the best ones. I've got a lot of work to do.

And Kitti, don't worry about your cynical mood. I knew it was a longshot that a program would have the distance tracker but I figure it never hurts to ask. I did download the free demo of Fractal Terrains Pro and you can do a Point A to Point B distance gauge but I'm sure travel time is in the hands of the creator.

Anyone else?


Posts: 1928 | Registered: Jul 2009  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
goldhawk
Member
Member # 8826

 - posted      Profile for goldhawk   Email goldhawk         Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
In my worlds, distances are measured in paces and leagues, heights in spans. These words are wonderfully ambiguous, so I can fudge the amount of time travel takes so that my characters arrive exactly when I want them.

I also take the attitude that map making is not an exact science and even official maps are bound to have many errors. This has historic precedence; take a look at any map before the 19th century. Sometimes it's even hard to determine what part of the world the map is for.


Posts: 16 | Registered: Oct 2009  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Rhaythe
Member
Member # 7857

 - posted      Profile for Rhaythe   Email Rhaythe         Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
I used StarCraft's level builder once for a similar purpose, but that was roleplaying...
Posts: 487 | Registered: Mar 2008  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
   

Quick Reply
Message:

HTML is not enabled.
UBB Code™ is enabled.
UBB Code™ Images not permitted.
Instant Graemlins
   


Post New Topic  Post A Reply Close Topic   Feature Topic   Move Topic   Delete Topic next oldest topic   next newest topic
 - Printer-friendly view of this topic
Hop To:


Contact Us | Hatrack River Home Page

Copyright © 2008 Hatrack River Enterprises Inc. All rights reserved.
Reproduction in whole or in part without permission is prohibited.


Powered by Infopop Corporation
UBB.classic™ 6.7.2