I am making a Fallout thing for personal use with this as my biggest inspiration, thanks
A downloadable game
Mappa Imperium is a solo or cooperative print & play World Building game.
You and any number of friends will take control of an entire fantasy world. Dividing the map equally and working together you will create unique landmasses, geography, and resources for your world. From there each player will take command of a major faction and develop it from a struggling settlement to a massive empire, or perhaps drive it into the lost histories of time.
Each player will take turns rolling the dice and placing features in their section of the map. Each of these regions will be home to one empire and throughout the game each player will create the story of the major empire within their play area. They will roll to decide many aspects of this empire but much of the story and design will be up to each player’s imagination.
Mappa Imperium is first and foremost a cooperative storytelling game and is played best when the players work together. By the end of the game you will have a full fantasy map complete with empires, lore, hostile tribes, and mysterious lairs.
Gameplay Time: 1.5-3 hours
Total Players: 1 or more
Full Playthrough Video:
*Update 8/19/21 "The 3d6 Update"
- Added third six sided dice for eras 3-5
- Created War Table
*Update 8/26/21 "Gods & Goddesses"
- Pantheon Era to create deities for the world
*Update 9/2/21 "Races Expanded"
- Built up Race Table to allow more variety and solve duplicate roll problems
*Update 9/15/21 "Neighboring Factions Update
- Added tables for advancing neighboring factions
- Settlement table rework/reword
- Slight adjustments in all tables to help with duplicate rolls
*Update 10/8/21 "Continental Update"
- Added optional rules for larger Islands that can span across home regions
- Added "Touch Up" step to give players a chance to fill out some gaps and beatify their home zones a little more
*Update 4/14/22 "Complete Update"
- New look!
- Several additions to develop and distinguish the Prime Factions
- Rewrite of "neighbors develop" and new phase between Era's 4 & 6
- Added final step for a proper ending
Click download now to get access to the following files:
Log in with itch.io to leave a comment.
I bought this game before I had an itch.io account and accidentally got rid of the PDF. Is there anywayto redownload it or do I need to pay the $10 again? At the time I didn't realize that it was associated with itch.io and I'd need your account to reaccess it. This is so much fun by the way, I did this with my 5th grade class and they loved it. Made map reading so much fun!
When you click "download" there's a link that says "no thanks, just take me to the downloads". That will take you back in to get the PDF.
It's a free game, the $10 is more of a tip (which I greatly appreciate!) Itch.io allows me to do a Pay What You Want system, so if you wish you can toss a few bucks my way but it's certainly not necessary.
Also, I'm glad you enjoyed it! I would love to see the map if you don't mind sharing it here :D
Hey Nook! Happy to be finally getting with my group to be playing this. We decided to do an eastern style map/theme (part of which is here). Just finished the (reletively) new Age of Myth - hugely fun!!! We included local Spirits and Dieties to reflect regional folklore.
We decided to do our own 3d6 Race table, to include Multi-race, and to suit our Pathfinder/DnD sensibilities:
- 3 Themed Choice (based on geography, gods, features, theme)
- 4 Daemonkind (Daemonfolk, imp, teifling)
- 5 Feyfolk (Satyr, Faerie, Eladrin, Kitsune, Firbolg, Fey multi-race etc)
- 6 Reptilian (tortle, lizardfolk, kobold, wyvaran, grippli, serpentfolk)
- 7 Multi-race (roll again to determine which races dominate, or 'standard' RPG style Human/Half-Elf/Gnome/Dwarf/Halfling mixture)
- 8 Smallfolk (Hobbits, Darklings, Halflings, Gnomes, Forest Gnomes, Svirfneblin)
- 9 Humans (Cultural, hybrid cultures, custom)
- 10 Dwarves (hill dwarves, mountain dwarves, duergar, surface dwarves, dwarf-multi-race)
- 11 Elves (Wood Elves, High Elves, Drow, Grey Elves, custom, Elf multi-race)
- 12 Other humanoid (Dragonborn, Elemental Genasi, Shifters, Kitsune, Aasimar, other)
- 13 Human dominant multi-race (roll 1d6 for number of other races present)
- 14 Animalfolk (Ratfolk, Mousefolk, Bearfolk, Leonin, Tabaxi, Herengon, Gnoll, Vanara, Tanukifolk)
- 15 Greenskins (goblin, orc, hobgoblin, monkey goblin, deep goblin greenskin multi-race)
- 16 Birdfolk (Tengu, Aarakocra, Owlin)
- 17 Giantkind (ogre, giants, golems, goliath, troll)
- 18 ‘Monstrous’ (centuar, bugbear, minotuar, gargoyle, orang-pendak)
Of course, people are free to use this or variate of it! Credit goes to Nook for the original idea :P
Another session, another custom table, this time a 2d6 Neighbours table:
- 2 Hive/Swarm (Spider’s nest, giant insects, giant rodents)
- 3 Deamonspawn/Deamonic Being
- 4 Sentient Beasts/Creatures (Giant Eagles, Wyverns, Ancient Golems, Manticores, Pandas etc)
- 5 Faction - Peaceful City State/Monastery City (create and fortify and prosperity)
- 6 Tribe/Clan (roll for race, or are they Fey crossed from the Feywild Realm?)
- 7 Faction - Minor Kingdom/Nation (create and add 1 additional settlement)
- 8 Faction - Order/Cult (Sect of chronomancers with a tower? Religious cult with an isolated fort? Knights order with their own temple/castle?)
- 9 Powerful Magic/Occult/Undead (Mad Wizard, Disruptive druid, Necromancer, an ambitious Vampire? In a tower, fortress, grove, lair, castle…)
- 10 Legendary Creature (Hydra, Aelder Dragon, Kraken, Giant Tanuki etc)
- 11 Kaiju/Cthulhu-esque being (realised from the ocean depths, perched atop a distant peak, or deep in the desert?)
- 12 Spirit/Deity/Avatar awoken and materialised… (roll to create - residing on a holy site, in an ancient ruin, a deep cavern? Benevolent, pragmatic, or hostile?)
This is to suit our preferences as a group. Feel free to use/adapt!
Are you open to someone making / posting expansions or alternate rules to this? Obviously free + with credit. I love this game so much and have played several solo games in the past few days, but I'm trying to make alternate rules for godless realms by replacing gods with magic systems, among some other alternate tables and stuff, and it seems a shame not to share it
Solo game with three Home Regions.
Not quite the same size. Working on in Samsung Notes on my tablet, which is why I put in the line on the left (in case I accidentally slide the world over).
This is the end of Era 1. I decided not to add anything after the 8 rolls. That empty spot in #3's big island leaves a bit of room for them to grow/discover, depending on later Eras.
Did have one mess up early on where I put #3's hills in #2 and #3's river in #2, but I caught it the next round and corrected course. XD
Will post another image once I'm done mangling this poor map with my chicken scratch notes for the other Eras. Love how organically the world grew just based on a few rolls!
Just a small question. Why did you put Pirates/Bandits and Tribes together? Both are very destinct and i have found myselve wondering how to explain why a tribe would build a floating city, etc. It´s not really critice, i´m just curious.
I originally had them separate, but the rolls ended up being very similar and decided to combine them into one. Also, combining them helped put all of that "neighbors develop" section onto one page.
For a little idea help, you could think of a tribe strapping together some rafts and building the town (like Lake-town from LOTR), and if you don't see them putting it in the sea then just use a river or lake.
Of course, you can always re-roll if it doesn't fit. I won't say anything :)
I just had a nice long solo game and I still love this game to death. Bless you Nookrium for bringing so many of my favorite things together into something that not only can be super fun to play, but can also be used for worldbuilding. Might even turn the session I just played into a short campaign :). The only problem I found was in Era 4, the hyperlink in "11 Expansion" takes me to page 8, not page 9, however that is such a small detail that it had 0 effect on my enjoyment. Keep up the fantastic work man.
on the 5.2 Neighbors Develop page, under the "Tribe / Bandits / Pirates" there is no have a 4th option, just 1,2,3,5,6
Fun little step I added in my solo run: At the end of each era after the first, for each region (so each player), I created an idiom around what was currently known of the world. A saying for local customs.
For instance, and mind that these are rather Chinese in nature due to this run being used to develop a wuxia setting... "I'll see you at Niangmukan" is a way to tell someone their goal is unattainable. It refers to the sacred site of one of the celestial beings established in the second age, which is so remote as to be considered mythical.
In another example, "awakened by a fulurong on the side of the road" is a reference to an animal chosen as one of the "resources" of my world, whose horns naturally balance qi around it. In other words, this idiom is a fancy way of describing a windfall.
I'm really digging this step because it helps add that little bit of extra oomph to the lore, so I figured I'd share in case anyone else wanted to take on a similar approach.
Gotta say, Nookrium, this has really come along. I took your game from a few revisions back and molded it into something a bit different to come up with a world map for my D&D campaign that my players might be more invested in.
Still haven't actually played with them yet, but that's how it goes. Besides, it's not like I'm going to publish or anything. I just really like this game and wanted to suit my needs a little better.
This latest update only helps that go that much smoother. Thank you!
Edit: Would I be able to get the Homebrewery Source code for this? I've been working with that program for a while now and it'd make my work so much easier. Either way, you have my thanks!
Just built my first map! The program I used online was free but did let me make paths or draw small lines but otherwise it was great!Loved how it came out!
I did want to mention that the Era charts don’t say to use 3d6 for the charts. I just happened to notice how high the charts went in number and fixed my rolls.
ooh nice, is that with Incarnate?
yes it is! I love the program. It was a lot of fun to use and it has a notes section to it that I can add markers to the map for so I know what resources are where and how each city came about with what race. I actually broke down and got the years subscription to be able to really define my map. I plan on making more just for the fun of it! I love world building and storytelling!
Yeah, what program is that?
Incarnate....I actually broke down and got the subscription since I loved it so much. I keep tweaking things on my map and adding ‘history’ and resource notes about this little world I made. Maybe one day I’ll host a home brew campaign for it. 😁
How's the progress on the final update going so far pal?
still truckin’ along. Since this will be the final update I’m trying to make it a big one. shouldn’t be too much longer though (hopefully)
Hey Nookrium, don´t want to seem rude, but didn´t you say you wanted to bring one more update out in a comment down below, or was that the continental update. Just wondering.
Sorry it's slow going, but I'm working on it. Rather than put out a few smaller updates I decided to lump them all in together for one big final release update. Here's a sneak peek at what I've been up to
Amazing. I sort of expected you to bring out one last large update. I´m already intrigued by the Leadership rules. Take your time, then it will be good for sure. One last question though. How far, would you say, is this update in develepmont? Around 60 - 70 percent or less/more. Keep up the good work.
60 to 70 is pretty accurate. I mostly just have some testing to do and a few things to draw in to pretty it up.
I downloaded what I thought was the game, but only got a PDF file. How do I access the game?
I have made a map in WorldBox v0.94 through Mappa Imperium!
I had to adapt things a little based on the biomes & races available in WorldBox, but overall it is the same. Except, the gameplay part I get to do Worldbox style! 😁
6. Acid Geyser
8. Ice Tower
9. Flame Tower
2. Undead (Necromancer + Skeletons)
There sure were a lot of rolls for the Ice Towers. 😬
I have actually been throwing in a few extra bells and whistles regarding technological advances (Based on access to local resources). Worldbuilding currently with stone age elves who only have access to flint, fish, and salt. They are currently dealing with a territorial wingless dragon who happens to fancy a spot they dedicated to their River God.
May you fancy sharing them with us? Maybe on the official discord server?
By some chance can you make a pdf for that?
Sorry it has taken me so long to respond. I broke my leg and I have been laid up for a while. Theres really nothing much to it. For example I start out in the stone age and I just go through the process of learning what is needed to advance to the bronze age, like metallurgy and access to copper and tin.
Will their be any more updates to this?
love the game, maybe add more biomes like tundra, snow?
Hey Nook. I've spent the last month creating this map on and off, backporting in updates as you've released them and I'm very pleased with the result.
Since finishing I've drafted a design document to use the map to play a sort of card-driven board game. a game within a game sort of thing, itself based upon mappa imperium's rules. The idea is still in its infancy but I'll let you know if anything ever comes of it.
Thank you for all your hard work making mappa imperium, it's scratched my civilization building/observing itch in a way very few other games ever have.
Hey Nook! kuya_mencias from youtube here.
I kind of homebrewed a lot based on my experience. Like an advantage system for War, where the players list down their advantages to gain +1 and said advantages canceled out if the opposition has an advantage themselves. And free actions every era to allow the player to declare war or create a settlement. I also allowed them to reroll if they don't like the outcome.
I have played the game four times. Twice finished solo. One unfinished solo. And the last with a group of friends. Here's the world me and my friends played, Davois. (My friends and I pretended to be Gods. And skipped the Pantheon part because it would just prolong the game. xD) (Also this game took almost an entire week of on and off play.)
ElMoe, God of Rivers, Seas, and Lakes favors the Goldiland Empire, a people of Giantkind. They harvest the Arcane Trees, their leaves are smoked to expand the mind of the user, amplifying magic. Their neighbors to the north whom they trade a lot are the Republic, composed of demonkind called Blanca who has a fishery of the Healing fish. They are plagued by a cult that has summoned their ancestor, The Great Old One, to the continent. To the south is the Deadmines Company, composed of greedy Orc miners who left their homes for greener pastures. And Halfling refugees and Goat tribesmen formed a confederacy for their shared experience with being forced out of their home. On the southern side divided by the Glowing Mountains, the Arillo States, a demonkind theocracy who separated from the Republic, settled down near the Glowing Mountains which they believed that their god Arillo, brother to Blanca, resides. The original goatfolk tribe exploits the glowing stones from the mountains. However, a new group of goatfolk has separated again on the other side of the river. And lastly, a reclusive goatfolk mage has taken residence nearby for the last 2 centuries or so.
Auzare, God of the Night, has favored the Orcs. They are surrounded by a great forest with dire wolves as black as the night called Shadow Wolves. (He is kind of not finished yet because of midterms. xD)
Waipurga, Goddess of something grim. (I hate playing with this guy because he power games but I had the last laugh. xD) His people, the Dragonborn, live on an island, surrounded by a bigger island with jungles surrounded by a desert. (See! He has competition in mind.) His dragonborn people subjugated the only other neighbor he has the halflings. All the bad neighbors, a necromancer, Pentafish, and Waterdragon live outside the bigger island. (Again. Power gamer.) The only entrance to his island is guarded by the Goldiland empire who heard the pleas of the halflings from the Confederacy. In return for helping the halflings reclaim their homeland, the giants could exploit the gold and silver fishes that populate the inlet and the shadow foxes that roam outside the desert. No one can come in and out without the permission of the Goldiland empire.
Reman, God of Wisdom and Knowledge, favors the Birdfolk. (He only played Era IV and stopped playing making me take the reigns of his islands. That's why it has the same art style as the center continent.)Reman Reborn, God of Wisdom and Knowledge, (Secretly ElMoe) favors the bird folk Imperials. Their great empire although situated on the tip of the Northern islands holds great riches from the resources exploited like the Lightning crystals that amplify lightning magic, healing trees, and Giant Eagles perching on top of the mountains. Their colony the Revolutionists has separated from the Empire after the injustice of wealth distribution. While the Empire prospers twice, the Revolutionists were fighting the Jungle Elves - their greatest rival since the colony was founded. So they had enough and separated. Scoring victories and reclaiming land that the elves took from them. A group of pacifistic Revolutionaries has formed a Separatist settlement on the other side of the jungle away from all the fighting and death that both sides bring to each other. A similar group of jungle elves journeyed north and settled near the tip of the great lake away from all the bloodshed and war. To the north lives tieflings who are fighting electric snakes that slither in the wetlands that they call home. To the west lives catfolk who herds sheep that grows silk.
I'm planning on playing this with my DND group to create their world. I plan on homebrewing some rules that the players are playing the gods they create and have that woven throughout the storyline. I sort of wanted to fuse this with the Dawn of Worlds game. I hope in future versions, the pantheon portion of this is elaborated a bit more. Otherwise, thanks Nook! This is great!
Finished my first game of this. It was fun and did create some fun stories. I found the Pantheon didn't add much for me. One of my starting faction had a rebellion and then lost over half of their remaining settlements. I made the Rebels the primary after that, then the original group joined with the rebels.
It did make me want to play with a friend but I suck at drawing.
I did a single player season with just one player and I noticed a few things that could be improved or better explained
Let's start with the first thing that happens.
I got a hive and it rolled a “Spawn” action in Age of Discovery. When it says to create a new legendary monster near “friend or foe” is this monster considered part of that hive if it’s set to be a friend? Like should be to consider part of the hive faction?
When a legendary monster spawns another legendary monster does that new legendary monster get a turn or does it have to wait until the next era? Also is this new legendary monster a part of a faction. Because in the same game we had 5 legendary monsters all part of the same faction. Like I feel like something is slightly off.
Also when this did become an issue we noticed two things. First Heroes are present in the game, but only for monuments. It would be nice if said heroes could be characters and get actions. It also would be nice if the heroes had a good chance to kill a legendary monster. Cause again in that game a ton of legendary monsters and i'm sure you can guess how that went. Lol
Also some things need to be a little more clear cause it confused us. Like if a legendary monster spawns a cult, does it belong to the monster? When you are about to get a shrine for a legendary monster what does that do? Is it just for art?
Also other than heroes that should be a thing in the future, what about things such as relationships and all that? Sometimes it’s not super clear in some situations on what the relationships should be between some nations. Maybe add to this too at one point?
Overall I like the game though, even though it can be a little confusing at times. Look forward to see what you come up with.
Many of the rules are written to be a bit on the vague side so the "rules" don't box you in to something that doesn't work with your story. If you come across some gray areas then just do what fits best.
For any roll that creates a new faction I would consider them a completely new entity, however, there's a few instances where you could consider them merged. The hive creating a monster is one of those instances, it could be a new queen that still lives with the hive, or, you could treat it as an ally that still rolls separately between ages but treats the hive as an ally and works together. Basically, it's up to whoever rolls to create the story and meaning of that result.
There are a few things that are meant to be map "beautifiers" and the shrine would be one of them. Little things like monuments, shrines, & landmarks to help add some fantasy character to the map.
You can also use shrines as an excuse to get your gods more involved in the story. The Pantheon section doesn't really do anything for the game unless you choose to use them. They are there to help you get ideas and create stories for certain groups. (New cult pops up and have a god of the moon. Maybe they're werebeasts?)
Heroes is something I've been thinking about for a long time but I haven't figured the best way to implement them. Either way, they'll be more for story than actually doing much to sway a roll or faction.
Thanks for the questions, I hope I've been somewhat helpful.
I'm in the middle of an epic world-creation with the help of Mappa Imperium, and I thought a cool addition could be ruling government systems. A simple roll for a monarchy, a triumvirate, an aristocracy, a democracy, etc. This is just for more flavor and storytelling depth. At least that's what I'm going to use it for. :D
Here's a sneak peek of my world in the Fourth Era. I started out with 4 Prime factions but upgraded any hostile factions or tribes to a Prime faction once they entered the game. So now I have 16 Prime factions. Like I said, it's EPIC. And it's taking forever.... xD
Fantastic looking map! That’s going to take forever, lol!
I like the idea of adding a government system, a simple roll could add a lot of story into the empires. Good idea!
I created a world with 4 factions together with my son of 5. In the northwest lived greenskins, lizards in the northeast and two factions of dwarfs in the south. Their was also a catfolk tribe and lots of pirates. My creativity with names is a bit lacking. But it was fun.
Great map! I love seeing how the pen & paper ones turn out.
How’d your 5 year old take it? I’m not sure mine would be patient enough. :)
I created this map after finding your video of the game on YouTube, so I'm posting my map, as requested. Started with 1 human kingdom and 1 giant kingdom. Ended with 5 human kingdoms, 1 orc tribe, 1 dwarf thanedom, and 4 kinds of giants. Very cool!
How did you paint the map?
This game is so much fun even using just pen and paper. I played it with my cousins and so far we have created different worlds with each other.
My suggestion is that if it is possible to add more variety in the settlement table (if possible), a way for gods to affect the world (optional) and more dynamics with the other players in the expansion face of the game.
Overall, it is a great game for great people with great imaginations.
There should be an option for a race/species to be destroyed, except for a single lost city.
I really love this game. One problem though: the Game Length Table on page 15 uses Eras 3-5 when G&G update has pushed those previous Eras up by one, so it should be Eras 4-6. Are you holding off on changing the table because you have future updates in mind?
I will be updating the eras a bit next time, but that was just a mistake.
Fixed now, thank you!
Hi, I am the one who was translating this into Spanish, I found some errors that were mentioned in the translation, I have already finished the translation, I have a draft to show you if you are convinced, where can I send it to you?
I enjoyed this game as a little solo afternoon. From your comments section I found Campaign Cartographer and look forward to doing this game again and putting it up on there when I get round to it.
I would say the pantheon could be integrated a bit more - perhaps things like specific diety influences on the world.
I didn't do the war / fall at the end because I was playing solo and didn't want a ravaged world on the already very full map I had but it also looks good.
Thanks! I’ll be adding a few more things in to hopefully add more pantheon integration. As of right now it’s more of an optional thing to add a bit more story into your world.
Is this for android or just pc?
Awesome game. I absolutely love it and can't wait to see the future updates. I'm actually using it to help world build for a fantasy book series I plan to start writing soon, if all goes well with the books, I will definitely leave it in the acknowledgements. I just wanted to let you know about some grammar typos I found. Era 3, 5, and 6's roman numerals are wrong and Era 4's roman numeral and number below it are both wrong. Thanks for the great game!
Love the concept. But I made some adjustments along the way to solve things that irked me for my game. I hope it comes off as constructive criticism. As a sidenote, as an ever-DM I was trying to repurpose this to be more fit for a world-creation, hence I tried to move a focus a bit more from Empire being as only main faction hostile to all other.
- During map creation there were a lot of empty spaces left, so instead of adjusting amount of rolls, which is hard due to variability of island number, I made it "Roll until everything is filled". Also expanded table to 3d6 so there's more plain types to balance new ruling. Also-also removed River as a roll and made them free to fill in after all biomes are rolled, because rivers are much more common than any result on 2d6/3d6 may provide.
- Straight up ignoring Pantheons, sorry. It doesn't add much aside from hassle and it's not really an Era.
- Speaking of which, Eras have too much similarities between each other and due to randomness results come up which is impossible to fulfill (go at war with non-existant faction). I tried to split eras by function very strictly and ended up with this:
1. Genesis - Create islands, geography, place resources.
2 .Population - Create races, place Empire capital, place other tribes and monsters.
3 .Expansion - Empire grows, tribes grow with a chance of new faction, monster's influence grows. Wizard towers, bandit dens, etc are placed here as well. NO conflict yet.
4 .Upheaval - Wars, raids, fight for territory and resources. Revolutions and alliances. Settlements fall, tribes or factions go instinct or merge, monster lairs overtake civilisation or perish. Ruins and Tombs created here.
5 .Exodus - Endgame. Apocalypse, plague, invasion, natural or unnatural catastrophe, etc. Empires and factions may or may not survive this. In either case, game ends.
- During Population Era I'd made sure that players are encouraged to replace any race with preffered result. Again, thinking as a world-building DM. Also, to combat repeating rolls, enforce adding adjective before rolled race. So even if it repeats, they are distinct enough (Dark Elf, Forest Elf, Desert Kobold, Trench Kobold, Human Riders, Human Barbarians, etc.).
- in Expansion Era (Burgeoning Kingdoms) I merged and expanded Settlement table and Hostiles table to 2d6. A bit more randomness that is balanced by the fact that no other force is outright hostile (it is yet to be decided during Upheaval).
- Lastly I separated Age of Empires and Rise&Fall into aforementioned Upheaval Era and Exodus Era. Some results were thrown back into Expansion Era. Basically making empire natural growth possible only during that era. During Upheaval it may grow only through conquest/alliances. And most nasty stuff reserved for Exodus where, if players want to play in created world, instead of roll result happening, players will be trying to prevent that outcome through their actions.
I hope I wasn't too brash and thank you for the effort you put into the game.
Not too brash at all, and I appreciate the thoughts. I’m still working on adding more to it to hopefully help with filling out the map a bit better, incorporate deities, and most importantly, add more variety to the rolls.
The challenge is trying to come up with a way to create a fun and simple fantasy map but with as much depth and story as possible, without going too overboard.
Hi, could you share the edits you made? TIA
Can I translate this (in spanish) and then send it to you so you can upload it in spanish as well?
sure, that’d be great!
I have already started to translate it, I am on the 4th page, where do I send it to you when I finish? I also make a translation of the web page? or is there no option for the page to change according to the language preference?
I have already finished the translation, I have a draft to show you if you are convinced, where can I send it to you?