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Alternative World Map (needing geographic advice)

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Hi, I’m currently working on a map for an alternative world and I was wondering if anyone would be interested in helping me out.

Having finished setting up the basic shape of the world, I’m trying to figure out how to place the world’s tectonic plates.

Knowing very little about geography, I have no idea how to arrange the plates in a somewhat believable manner (I’ve attached what I’ve tried so far). While I’m not looking for 100% realism, I’m still interested in having the map make some form of geographic sense (I’m also planning to use the plates to help determine volcanic and seismic regions, weather patterns, and general temperatures).

The plates ought to be arranged to permit the existence of the desert and mountain chain already illustrated on the map. I don’t mind changing certain aspects of the landmass as long as the two previous characteristics can be maintained.

If anyone could tell me ways to arrange the plates (including their general movement), I would be most thankful. Once I get the plates set up, I’ll be able to start fleshing out my map. At the same time, I welcome any advice/criticism on the world’s current shape. I would also be interested to know what could be some expected effects of the map's current arrangement on the world's weather and temperature.

Feel free to doodle on the maps I’ve attached.

Plain Map

Map with Basic Plates

PS: The world I’m working on is supposed to roughly share the same characteristics as those of earth (eg: similar size, one moon, ect...)

Attached Thumbnails

  • Map1.jpg
  • Map2.jpg



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I don’t know how many geographers (let alone cartographers!) are going to feel comfortable commenting on geology. It looks to my untrained eye that you have several tectonic principles in play. I don’t see anything obviously wrong other than that I expect more mountains.

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You might want to read up a bit on it, it is not that complicated - look specifically about plate tectonics regarding subsidence, uplift, convergence etc...

Wikipedia is probably a good starting point...
Hugo Ahlenius
Nordpil - custom maps and GIS

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