Commission - World of Calindria

I have been asked to stitch together 16 FT maps together to come up with a CC3+ world (the detail wanted by the client was far greater than the FT map as one download!!!). This was NOT an easy task.

Here is my altitude map with winds, currents and tectonic plates.

Can any worldbuilders out there jump in with their comments on the latter please? The land masses and altitudes cannot be changed though.



  • LoopysueLoopysue 🖼️ 28 images Cartographer ProFantasy
    edited September 24

    Well, it looks ok, but I have a pretty major suggestion that might not be very welcome.

    I've never thought it was a good idea to mess with plate tectonics on a fantasy world. We always want to have far too many land masses, not enough open ocean, and way too many mountain ranges all over the place (the area taken up by the Earth's mountain ranges is somewhere around 15% of the land surface, which is far less than you typically get on the average fantasy world). On a fantasy world the resulting mass of plates required to explain an excess of mountain ranges far exceeds a realistic number of plates. The earth itself only has 15 principle plates.

    On top of that problem, a major subduction zone will tend to create thousands of miles of long smoothly curving coastline, like the Peru-Chile trench. You don't have even just one such coastline to be able to set up something like that. So my advice would be to gently persuade the client away from including the PT of his or her world. Everything else will probably look, feel, and work so much better without it.

  • Thanks, Sue. There are other reasons mountain ranges can form other than tectonic plates, but I agree with you in general. I am really not up for gentle persuasion, and the client likes it, so there we are - but I am happy to draw different ones.

    And Earth hasn't always had 15 major tectonic plates. Just sayin'. 😌

  • edited September 24

    My Old Crestar has huge ocean areas... but I am thinking about adding in ocean deeps and sea mounts. So a hundred or so maps, 185 miles x 234 miles, aren't just blank except for name of the ocean and the map row and column info.

  • edited September 24

    Of course, there's no guarantee the plates will be mobile (not all are on Earth, for instance), and in a fantasy setting, it might be interesting to assume they're all held locked together. Earthquakes could then happen when someone mucks about with the planet's magical field too much, threatening the stability of the whole plate structure and the entire world, say. In turn, that fixed structure might lead to lots of unusually high mountains, for instance, with volcanoes able to erupt for long periods in the same place.

    However, how fixed are the plates in terms of this map? You did ask for comments regarding them, so maybe "not very"? If so, reducing the number, and making their edges fit better to the established terrain features might improve matters overall, including under the sea. Right now the edges look much too random to be believable. Obviously, if you're stuck with them as that's what your client wants, there's nothing we can do to assist with them at all!

    Oh, and what's the size of the planet? Earth-like? Or smaller/larger?

    With the ocean currents, are the arrow sizes intended to indicate strength as well as direction? If strength, those in the enclosed northern sea seem a bit too strong overall.

    You might also want to rethink the current flows in relation to the seabed topography, and take another look at the currents towards the left edge of the map particularly. Two of the warm (red arrow) currents start abruptly very close to land for no obvious reason, and one cold (blue) one runs almost into a projecting finger of land in the north, which is very unlikely (unless there's some kind of vast "tunnel" under that finger of land that's warming the water up as it goes through, perhaps).

    For the winds, it's maybe a little odd the ocean currents seemingly aren't influencing the temperature of the winds in places (again, assuming the arrow colours are temperature indicators).

  • So, why do you need to show the tetonic plates?

    In any case, it seems you can easily reduce the number of plates in the ocean.

  • Thanks so much for your valuable input. The tectonics will be redone. More comments about currents and winds would be helpful.

    The size is about the same size of Earth. The arrows do not represent strength. Hope that helps.

    My next world for myself will start with tectonic plates first - should be fun. Perhaps I will break a plate to randomly get the plates. 😏

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