The Universe

So how to take the first step of a journey when everything you know about it is just a feeling that you want to do it? I don’t know yet but I will begin just as I would begin any new software project.
I would collect some information about the goal and why I want to do such thing at all.

Goals and Motivations

  • Reason number one: I have always dreamed of making a such thing.
  • Second: I’ve always wanted to create video games that have some depth and relevancy. Such universe would give a platform to do it. Such Universe would bind those games on a more global level.
  • Third: I’d like to have a community around it that would make such endeavour meaningful.
  • Fourth: I just like to create and try new things.

So, having established that, let’s see how far we will get.

First steps

First of all I need to decide where I am going to collect all the information about the Universe.
What would be my medium? The simplest solution would be a plain text editor. I sit down and begin to write.
But where so I begin? How to manage such amount of information? How to build structures, maps, timelines, characters and relations between those objects?
I don’t think a plain text editor would do the job, so I have recently looked around if there are some tools for world creators. And as is so often the case it happens to be such things. I won’t go into details which tool is the best as it was some time ago as I looked around.

I decided to go with World Anvil. I am not advertising it nor am I somehow associated with them. I just found it very useful. Its primary target group are game masters for games such as Dungeons & Dragons but it is good enough for my use case. And it’s not merely a tool. It is more of a framework where you will be asked a lots of questions that help you to get your feet wet.

Big picture or details first?

Well, I don’t know the rules here when it comes to creating a universe. I would say one must adapt to current situation. What is my current situation then?

I don’t want to go Tolkien here creating the Silmarillion. So I choose the practical path. I have some constraints I have to comply:

  • I want to create a background for my mobile RPG so its scope is already outlined: it must make sense within one story. There will be some anchors left in the outside world though.
  • I have to limit my scope to doable boundaries. In terms of storytelling, world creation, assets, gameplay etc. As is so often the case one wants to create way more things than he is able to do. So I have to come up with a story that is good enough to be able to anchor some details in it but simple and short enough to be able to do it in a foreseeable time. Besides it is a mobile game so by definition it won’t be a never-ending story.
  • What is my timeframe? I do not have any deadline. However I’d like to finish this in a year. It may of course take some more time if the community is so eager to support it but even then I’d rather finish one title and get to another instead of going blindly without a goal.
  • I will define the world only as far as it is needed for the current title. If I start to develop all myths, stories, civilisations and drama for the whole universe I won’t get very far. I will just create some initial constraints and work me through it.

In next steps I’d like to come up with some first ideas. I’d like to publish some drafts of the world and gameplay.
Stay tuned!

Don’t hesitate to comment on my posts! I highly appreciate any feedback!

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