Monday, June 1, 2015

Link: Hari Ragat Games on SEAsian RPG Worldbuilding

World-building is often a stressful exercise for those of us who have no reference points for beginning, especially in non-European settings. We use our own countries / heritages as a starting point, but often, we know very little of neighbouring countries and how it comes together into regional politics.

Hari Ragat Games has a series of blogposts on the matter! In the first post on Building Southeast Asian Settings, he references the weather, geography, and religious influences on the local architecture. It's very useful to consider the monsoon when worldbuilding in steampunk, because the environment very much influences what kind of technologies we will build.

The second post is on "The Bamboo Network," following the flow of Chinese migration, as well as a brief outline of the histories of the various empires across Southeast Asia. Buncha ships, which is also very important to consider when writing in the maritime countries of SEAsia (which are the Philippines, Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, Singapore and Vietnam).

For the landlocked countries, Hari has a post on the highlands and a bit of highlander culture, which historically resist nation-state configurations of identity, economy, and politics. Hopefully, we'll see more stories featuring these peoples as time goes by!

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