The other day while testing tectonics.js in the background, I found a result I rather liked. I was intending to use tectonics.js to create the basic continental arrangement for my habitable planet orbiting 40 Eridani as part of an incredibly long project I’m working on. I found out in the process that the latest version of tectonics.js no longer works on my computer.
The result I found, when I checked it in the morning was rather interesting. I don’t know if I will use it for the 40 Eridani project, but I am keeping it for later use.
I did think I would show it off, here, though. I can go show the images I have generated, and go over the features that appealed to me particularly.
The first thing that I noticed about this map was that it vaguely reminded me of the map of Tschai from the Planet of Adventure books by Jack Vance.
You have to squint really hard to see the similarity. It also probably wouldn’t hurt to have a nut or two loose in your brain case like me!
Kotan is a bit soft pedaled. Kislovan and Haulk are a bit hulking. Charchan is kind of there(…). That island in the Draschade Ocean seems to have wandered a bit eastward, or maybe Vord fell to the south.
Okay. It’s not that close a resemblance, but it’s about as good as you could hope to come up at random.
Anyway, with a similar exercise of the imagination, you could see bits of Earth in this map as well. This is a bit less literal than my effort with Tschai, although squinting and loose fasteners are similarly useful.
That island in the south east quadrant brings New Zealand to my mind. Isolated, temperate and perhaps a touch exotic. The temperate arc in the north east quarter looks like it could have an interesting Europe-like feel to it. Along the coast you go from the edge of a desert to something vaguely like Iberia. Further up the arch, you pass through regions similar to
France and perhaps Germany. Across a small gulf, you find Scandinavia or maybe a more continental Britain. Inland, to the north and west, you segue into possible steppelands, like Russia. If you head south to the upside-down tee-shaped peninsula, you find desert and tropical jungles like a diminutive Africa of sorts. This arrangement, with its pocket-sized tropical regions makes me think even more strongly of the World of Greyhawk. As you can see, the more specific we get, the more forced the comparisons become. This is all for the good. If we wanted to play on Earth, there are plenty of very good maps of that planet.
I would also want to add further points of oddness to the world as I detailed it. Strange flora and fauna. Unearthly environments. Earth itself has plenty of those, why shouldn’t this world?
Anyway, I thought this might be an interesting exercise in trying to visualize a world by looking at a fairly random map. “Fairly” random, because this is based on an attempt to model the tectonic processes that might be found in a real planet similar to Earth.
For added enjoyment. Hopefully. I’ve added some additional generated maps.
Comments and suggestions are always welcome. Criticisms might be appreciated…
Thank you for your attention.