Some Global Inspiration...

Traveling right now.
3 weeks. Japan, Singapore, Malaysia, India, Indonesia, Thailand....

Dungeons? Inspiration? Cultures and color? Plenty. Especially in India.
Poverty, depression, humidity, heat and rain? Yup. Especially in India.

It's funny, the inspiration you get from the world around you, even when it comes to applying that to the worlds we create. In researching a hobby shop in Kuala Lumpur Malaysia, looking for some hopefully killer deals, I came across some photos from. Shop on the outskirts of the city. They unfortunately did not have the items I was hoping to find, Wizards of the Coast D&D Miniatures or the Games Workshop Lord of the Rings line, but they did have some great photos of tabletop gaming here in South East Asia. And from the perspective of one who enjoys the environment in which we game as much as the game itself, I found it interesting how different their interpretation of "fantasy" was.

Let me explain.

See, when I create a fantasy role playing environment, there are a few consistencies wich always remain the same from my own perspective of what "my world" is like- forests, mountains, green pastures, snow capped peaks, and deep dark cavernous dungeons.
But when looked at the photos from the gamers and modellers over here, that's not what I saw. I saw muddy rivers, jungle scapes, red-brown muddy terrain, sparse forests and tangled stands of thick underbrush, steep jagged rocks jutting in straight lines... It was Asia! Albeit, a "fantasy scape" Asia.
And just like I instinctively design a fantasy scape "North America" or even "North Western Europe," they too instinctively designed what, in their own perception of the world, was their "fantasy" setting.

Fantasy implies anything goes, and I love that, but there is always a sense of reality in any good fantasy setting too, something people, and miniatures, can stay grounded too.
But this, this was an interesting contrast, and it really made me re-think my own view of fantasy and of table top settings. I never realized the unnoticed limitations my own imagination was placing on itself, until I stepped out of my comfort zone, crossed a couple oceans, and saw so many things, of which this is just one very very tiny one, that inspired....

Miniature landscapes of city slums, markets, temples of gold and red and greens, dirty oceans none dare enter, ceremonies and statues and idols and gods and colors beyond much to describe, so much to share.
Almost makes me wish this blog actually had followers.

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