Worldbuilding Resources

0daf2c30d5c3ae7bed2af20777eb0be7World building is one of the (many) fun aspects of gaming and writing – creating whole worlds, nations with their histories and societies, cities filled with people…

What follows is a list of essential resources – most of them free – that might help anyone willing to try their hand at the business of the gods…

Add your own: these are my resources, and we’d all be happy to learn about other tools and sources of information; so, if there’s some website, book or software you think might make this list better, please use the comments to let us know.
Thank you!

Online Essentials

. 25 Things You Should Know about Worldbuilding, by Chuck Wendig

. Discovering Robert E. Howard: Jeff Shanks on The Worldbuilding of REH, from the Black Gate Blog

. Gaming, World Building, and Narrative: Using Role-playing Games to Teach Fiction Writing, by Trent Hergenrader

. The Spiral Method of World Building, from Roleplaying Tips

. Create Fictional Cultures, by J.S. Morin

. Worldbuilding Leviathan, from Kitty’s Writing Tools

Tools & Utilities

. Worldbuilding Leviathan explained and expanded by Belinda Crawford, includes Scrivener templates

. Autorealm, fantasy mapping software

. Old Maps Online


. The Kobold’s Guide to Worldbuilding
Essential collection of monographic articles by the industry’s leading authors.

. Holly Lisle’s Create a World Clinic
Aimed at fiction writers, but sound advice for game designers, too.

. Building Imaginary Worlds: The Theory and History of Subcreation, by Mark J.P. Wolf
Expensive and terribly thorough, but well worth the time (and, sigh, money)

But also…

. Norman Davies – Vanished Kingdoms
Because history is always a great source of inspiration.

. What If?: The World’s Foremost Historians Imagine What Might Have Been, edited by Robert Cowley
Because history can be rewritten, as long as we are playing

Full disclosure: yes, these are commercial links to Amazon, and I might make a buck out of your purchase – but the books won’t cost you a dime extra if you click the link.

Online worlds worth exploring

. Orion’s Arm

And again – if there’s something I’m missing (and surely there is!), please tell me and the readers in the comments.
Thank you!

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