Friday, September 2, 2016

Day 2: Physical Planet

Here we are with Day 2 of 30 Days of WorldBuilding. Yesterday was pretty fun, making a list of various climates and emotions connected to them. Today's exercise is called "The Physical Planet".

Reading through this, it talks about the impact weather makes on your story, and makes you consider things like seasons, storms, and how they will interact with the narrative.

What role do you anticipate weather playing in your story? Do you have a lot of travel that you want to complicate with bad storms? Are you going to snow in your mighty heroes? Will there be a mighty battle, determined by sudden flooding? You actually don't need to know right now. Your exercise for today is to jot down ten plot devices that relate to weather, and what you think they do to the story (for example: a snow-in can turn the mood very claustrophobic... or very intimate).
Hmmm...recent news being what it is, I've got a few on the mind...
  1. Oppressive Heat - shortens tempers, exhausting to do anything in
  2. Extreme Drought Conditions - reduces crop production, affects economy, water rationing
  3. Impending Hurricane - causes urgency of action, time management, panic to escape threatened areas
  4. Torrential Rain - bogs things down, slows travel out of necessity/saftey
  5. Earthquake (It's kinda weather-related) - minutes of terror and destruction followed by anxiety of escaping the devastation or rescuing those trapped by it.
  6. Flooding - unstoppable, deceptively dangerous, moves in and moves out slowly (takes hours or days to on-set or recede)
  7. Tornado - Impending doom, tension during the storm that causes it, once a tornado is seen it's a panicked flurry of activity to batten down or get out of it's path. Absolute terror and destruction to be in one.
  8. Wildfire - A battle against nature, other weather conditions affect effectiveness, purifying/destroying, omni-directional path of devastation
  9. Solar Flare - Can completely disrupt communications if massive enough, or cause radiation exposure on a world with a lower magnetic field or if in orbit. This is a bit of an odd one, but given the nature of my game it's a factor.
  10. Meteor Shower - I like this one, imagine an adventure that takes place on a planet that's experiencing a severe meteor storm; one with thousands of meteors creating hundreds of meteorites. They don't have to be big, but even a golf-ball sized one could mortally injure a man.  Or a vehicle. Or a building.

I notice that I've got a lot of "doom and gloom" from my weather. I could have gone with things like "fog" or "calm summer evening", but I tend to run dynamic adventures. Fog seems more like an "environmental annoyance" rather than an exciting plot element, even thought I know fog can be used to great effect as an ally of the protagonist or an adversary. It's just not..."sexy", you know?

This list already has me getting some ideas for neat encounters and adventures, or complications to use during play. But what is Trinary going to be like? What is the mood and setting of the game I'm going to make?  Supposedly tomorrow's exercise is supposed to determine just that.

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