CBP Worldbuilding #3: Water Sources

This is the third post using Angeline Trevina’s book 30 Days of Worldbuilding (available on Amazon), the book provides 30 prompts/exercises to help guide world-building.

One of our readers Alistair suggested in the comments of a previous post that perhaps some of the swampland could take the form of bayous, have to admit I didn’t know much about bayous (beyond pop-culture references) so I had a look at a few websites including the following:

Thanks for the suggestion Alistair, I’m a big fan of the OSR module/sandbox Fever Swamp and love the idea of the bayous; that dovetailed nicely with the third prompt in the 30 Days of Worldbuilding book which is to draw the main bodies of water on your map.

I’ve already done a bit of this but decided to expand it a bit, in addition to adding some more water sources I’ve stuck some crude labels on and have added a couple of forests.

Additional water sources, some labels and forests added.

CBP Worldbuilding #2.5: Drawing more map

This is the third post using Angeline Trevina’s book 30 Days of Worldbuilding (available on Amazon), the book provides 30 prompts/exercises to help guide world-building.

This is an extension of the prompt Day 2: Draw Your Map where the author advises us to draw a map to prevent us getting lost in our world.

My initial post creating the outline of the map can be found here.


It’s been a while since I’ve looked at my Colonial Blackpowder idea for a setting.

Whilst drawing these maps I’ve been looking at a quote describing colonial America:

Colonial America was a vast land settled by Spanish, Dutch, French and English immigrants who established colonies such as St. Augustine, Florida; Jamestown, Virginia; and Roanoke in present-day North Carolina.

https://www.history.com/topics/colonial-america

I really love this idea of a vast land where everything, including the terrain is writ-large, primeval and untamed by the hands of man; so I’ve been looking at some maps of America for inspiration when it comes to the placement of larger terrain features (mountains, forests, rivers and swamps).

Below is the map I currently have, although this may change in the future:

Current map for CBP setting

In the above maps the brown areas are mountains, the blue lines rives, the light green areas forests and the dark green area swamp-land.

Although I am considering removing some the northern forest area and nearby river to replace it with a desert-style area, shown below with a yellow circle:

Considered location of desert

Obviously if I was going to do this I’d remove the river and probably the forest to the south.

CBP Worldbuilding #2: Draw Your Map

This is the second post using Angeline Trevina’s book 30 Days of Worldbuilding (available on Amazon), the book provides 30 prompts/exercises to help guide world-building.

Day 2: Draw Your Map – the author advises us to draw a map to prevent us getting lost in our world.


Colonial Blackpowder

Since my setting is based very loosely on American colonisation I decided to use a map of North America as my starting point, I downloaded an antique map from Google.

I then printed the map and–using the old-school technique of tracing a drawing whilst holding it up to a window–I created the following outline map.

I scanned the outline map back in, using Photoshop to darken it and correct a few errors.

Next I filled the landmasses in a solid colour, using Photoshop.

This looked cool but the map was still very obviously North America, after some time I decided to rotate the map and use the shaded section as the sea rather than the land. I printed out the map and extended some of the bits on the right hand side of the new picture.

Next I scanned it in again and filled in any areas of sea that were still unshaded.

Finally I changed the sea colour to blue and shaded the land green, putting a simple colour effect, making the sea lighten nearer the land.

Finally I added an outline around the landmasses.

As you can see from the image above I’ve still got some work to do on the map and there are a few bits and pieces I’ve missed out (I’ve also not decided on scale or things like that), but–in about an hour–I’ve got a promising map that I’m pretty happy with overall.

Happy 2020 and 30 Days of Colonial Blackpowder

A Happy New Year to you all, as we kick off 2020 with Season 3 of the Red Dice Diaries Anchorcast we’re Overjoyed to See RPGs, I’m excited to talk about my plans for creating a Colonial Blackpowder D&D campaign setting in 2020.

This idea was inspired by ChicagoWiz’s excellent podcast and blog: https://chgowiz-games.blogspot.com/

I also talk about the workbook 30 Days of Worldbuilding written by Angeline Trevena.

The book is available on Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Days-Worldbuilding-Step-Step-Fictional/dp/1677313129

You can also check out the author’s website: https://www.angelinetrevina.co.uk

Have an opinion or thoughts on this topic? Leave us a voicemail at: https://anchor.fm/the-red-dice-diaries/message

Theme tune is Exotica by Juanitos, used under Public Domain licence.