Rememberences of Map Contests Past


The POD dates back to the Castilian War of Succession in (1475-1479 OTL), with France assisting the Portuguese Queen Juana much more than OTL. With Aragon squashed the French were more free in the Italian wars and managed to secure Naples. The HRE soon entered a stand off with the now more powerful France and over the course of centuries the Germanic nations and Romantic nations united against each other. The Germans still suffered from sever disorganisation though, shattered into hundreds of states, but that all changed in the mid 1700s with a massive revolution that united the Germanic World and set them on what the people felt was their path to global dominance. The war spared by this revolution saw them triumphantly capture Moscow and turn Russia into a (significantly declawed) republic as well. Against this might the Romantics turned to the Ottomans for aide, the only force able to balance the Germans gain of Russia. As the 19th century approached Europe began to engage in the world abroad in full force, both the Germans and the Romantics tried to overthrow China and gain that mighty jewel for themselves. They ended up driving China into a Warring States period and soon backed out when they realised the Chinese were still their technological equals and had serious numerical advantages. The French turned to Gorea and Siam though, looking now for allies rather than colonies, and they helped those nations industrialise to counter Russia's eastward expansion. The Germans tried to conquer India, but the Shah had seen what the Europeans had done in China and drove them off the subcontinent with force of numbers, only after the sever and uneven losses did the Indians realise their armies needed serious reform. The turned to the Ottomans for aide in exchange for assisting in taking apart Persia. The Shah's attempts at increasing centralisation was unpopular amongst Hindus who soon overthrew him and, for a while, cut India off from European influence. The 19th century ended in a massive conflagration which pushed the Germans into a position of dominance, but the post war era saw the successful testing of a Latin nuclear weapon in the Sahara and by the present date of 1948 an arms race is in full swing, with the Latins leading the way, followed closely by Germany. Gorea also has a substantial stockpile, convinced that China will attack.



The Premise:

Columbus can't get Ferdinand and Isabella to bankroll his crazy scheme--for one thing, everyone knows that you can't reach China by sailing west; the ocean is too wide and also we're too busy pushing the Moors out of Iberia and back into Africa. Sorry.

But eventually Henry VII of England ponies up some cash, and Columbus sails off with a couple of ships, and eventually returns claiming to have found the island of Cipango. So that sparks some interest. A lot of powers get in on this new game. France wins big; it's French conquistadors who knock over the Aztec and Inka empires, and most of that sweet, sweet bullion goes into French coffers to pay for a few rounds of wars. Britain grabs most of the rest of South Columbia and some decent islands, Portugal splits North Columbia with the various Protestant powers, and Spain grabs a chunk of Texas, although they're mostly pretty busy getting nowhere in North Africa.

Time passes; a few wars shake up Europe. The southernmost British colonies break away to form the Commonwealth of Columbia. Another round of wars. The riches of the Indies beckon. (No one gets confused about which ones, because they call the Caribbean Islands "Cipango" instead.) Some guys in England and Flanders start to figure out what all this coal might be good for. Another round of wars gives some of the Columbian colonies a chance for independence. Mostly no one notices. Things are pretty quiet up there in North Columbia.

The German states start pulling their act together. French discovers yet another continent--hot, dry, and full of poisonous animals. Seems like a great place to send troublemakers and rabble-rousers. (There sure are a lot of those these days. How could this possibly go wrong?) Russia starts to emerge from medieval squalor; the Poles and their friends aren't too thrilled. China stays on its toes and keeps up with the foreign devils, but the French push their way into Japan.

The industrial revolution is in full swing. The Germans are making up for lost time--where can we find a few colonies? Africa! It'll be the next big thing! (Except that instead of valuable stuff, it's full of diseases and grumpy natives with spears.) French are there too. Everyone's getting a bit nervous about these French. Alliances start shifting. The French colony in Australia revolts (what a surprise!) and manages to make it stick. The first aircraft take to the skies.

Round one: fight! Germany, Spain, England, Poland vs France. Lots of people die before the generals figure out the best way to use these new-fangled machine guns. Eventually it sort of peters out. A few colonies change hands. No one really wins, but England doesn't really lose. Business is good, business is bad. Regime changes happen. Germany goes "Anarchist." (Definitely not our sort.) Encourages oppressed minorities of Europe to follow suit. A lot of people like that idea; a lot of governments don't. Alliances shift a bit; it's about time for round two.

Round two: fight! Germany and Poland vs. Spain, France, Russia, Austria. The Brits stay out of it this time. Probably a good decision. Things don't go so well for Germany and Poland. They lose some territory and their colonies, such as they were. The Republic of the Four Lands is back down to two. The victorious powers sign some treaties, making sure this kind of radical nonsense (voting? a free press?) doesn't happen again. Some of those former radicals flee abroad, to more hospitable southern climes, where things are freer.

The Columbian Commonwealth and the Social Republic of Terrerouge start a club of their own, and get some buddies to join. They don't like the way the French and Russians are throwing their weight around. The Ottoman Empire (the sly old man of Europe) is interested. So are the British and the Portuguese. The Chinese remain as inscrutable as ever. The Columbians test a new weapon in a remote site in the Atacama. A few months later, the French test a similar one deep in the Sahara. An awkward silence settles over the world. The year is 2009.
MotF 161: The World is Gonna Roll Me

The Challenge

Make a map of a country with exceptionally bad luck. This could mean that the country was scapegoated, divided, or just spiraled into a depression.
Emperor Lapland:


Die Welt wird rolle mich

In this TL, instead of the more light Versailles treaty, the Entente implements the treaty proposed by France.
France would get Alsace-Lorraine back and would annex al the land west of the Rhine, except for Saarland, which would become an independent state
Belgium, The Netherlands and Denmark would get Wesser Erms, historical Friesland and Schleswig-Holstein and Lunemburg respectively. Poland would get Poznan and the Corridor, while Danzig became an independent state and Southern East-Prussia and Southern Silesia were subject to a plebiscite. Poland and France moved many people to enssure they would win it. Memeland was ceded to Lithuania a year after.
As if that was not humilliating enough, France also gave Bavaria independence and the United Kingdom occupied the areas nearby Lubeck and Hamburg and forced germany to pay war reparations (tho they weren't as harsh with that as in OTL)

As many of the germans from the annexed regions were deported, anti Prussian sentiments grew on the country, as people from all over the country blamed the Prussian militarism for their weak situation, specially people from the South, Hannover and Saxony. These sentiments strengthened when in 1923, France occupied the Ruhr industrial zone and an economic crisis stroke the country. Strikes happened all across the nation with a violent reponse by the government.
Led by many of the deported germans, a revolution started in Oldemburg and Westphalen on April 1925, begining the German Civil war or also known as the German-Prussian war.

The map presents the frontlines of this war as on June 12th 1927
Happy July 20th, guys! For Colombia's independence day I've decided to do a Colombia-screw.


So there's not much thought as to this timeline - just a continued decline of Colombia throughout the nineteenth and twentieth century.

The Colombian State didn't have much control over its territory at any time in either timeline. The difference, however, is who picked up the slack for the Colombian government - while iOTL it was party organisations (the Liberals and Conservatives became deeply entrenched in the Colombian territory, which is kind of what brought rise to the guerrillas), in TTL it's the regional governments that pick up the slack. Eventually, they become way more powerful than the State government, which has to recognise this power by limiting its overreach.

When a Conservative government rose to power in Bogotá in the 1890s, it was the most powerful state (and a traditionally liberal one), Cauca, that decided to secede, doing what Ecuador and Venezuela had done in the face of the rise of Santanderean liberalism in Bogotá in the 1830s. Tolima, a small state but one with a powerful army and the most radical liberal politicians, soon followed suit. Conversely, once a Liberal government arose in the early 1900s, the arch-conservative region of Antioquia declared its secession, also too strong for Colombia to fight back. Panamá, with mounting US aid and now separated from the rest of Colombia by Antioquia, also declares independence. (The Mosquito coast remains a contentious topic of dispute between Panama and the strong Nicaragua Federation). Panama and Antioquia were friendly, despite some border quarrels, that were eventually solved through U.S. intervention (hence the hideous horizontal border). Ecuador got annexed by a radically irredentist Perú in the 1880s.

The 1950s were a time of transformation for the north of the South American continent - revolutions in Perú expelled the traditional oligarchy and established a Native-led People's Federation that gave autonomy to Ecuador as a special subject, Brazil experienced a radical revolution in its democratic processes, Antioquia experienced a conservative revolution that declared the State a Catholic Republic, and Tolima fell to a alt-Socialist government. The 1950s also saw the start of Atlantic separatism - the idea that the Atlantic coast was better off by itself (which was mostly a ploy by corrupt businessmen and landowners due to an increasingly leftwing and anti-corruption Colombia). Finally, the Atlantic coast achieved independence in 1974, changing its name several times until the world faced the birth of the ever-corrupt, ever-poor Free State of New Andalusia.

The rump Colombian state, consisting little more of Bogotá and the Llanos Orientales (by far the wealthiest state in former Colombia, although not the strongest one), finally agreed to determine that Colombia was a thing of the past, and in 1979 renamed itself the Free State of Cundinamarca - forever entrenching the balkanization of small states in the region. Ecuador was also given independence from Perú after a referendum in 1997 which proved the paramilitaries of Northern Perú right - the new Republic is landlocked, but democratic and kinda transparent.

All countries have experienced great growth in their GDP and their democratic processes, but they remain poor - with a lack of cooperation with the rest of the Continent, only the three allied states of Antioquia (and its Atrato canal), Panamá (and its Panama canal) and Guayaquil (with naval bases in the Galápagos islands and Guayaquil itself) have managed to profit from foreign trade to a large scale. Cauca and Antioquia are bitter enemies, both ideologically and in regards to politics. Tolima, while succeding with its libertarian socialist experiment to a degree (it's a mostly autarchic region - get used to a lot of coffee and potatoes if you move there) is isolated from the international community. Venezuela and Cundinamarca, while sovereign, are a bit of pushovers regarding Brazilian influence, while Quito remains in the pocket of Perú. The future might be bright for the region - but its history is grim.

Also, here's a gif of the decline and fall of Colombia.


I'll keep this quick then shall I (don't want to miss the deadline).

The map below is part of a new world-building project I've decided to embark on, and shows the consequences of an early WW1 equivalent on an alternate, surviving Gran Colombia.

Yeah, I know that Gran Colombia surviving this long is lucky compared to OTL; the difference is that though butterflies brought time, they just delayed the inevitable collapse. Indeed, they it only made it worse - instead of quietly shedding territory as per OTL, the collapse of this Gran Colombia was much more violent, and produced a plethora of new small successor states.

So, things start to deviate from OTL around 1810ish, though for the purposes of this map the change is that Gran Colombia survives by federating further than OTL, with many of the OTL Provinces elevated to being federal subjects in their own right, in an effort to curb Venezuelan and Ecuadorian regionalism and nationalism. This works better than would be expected, and so Gran Colombia limps through most of the 19th century, constantly putting down revolts and ceding away border territory.

Two years before the first map is set, The Cordoba Pact (an alliance of Peru and La Plata (alt-Argentina), both confident middle powers ITTL) invade and carve off Panama as an independent republic (Gran Colombia was being pushy about canal rights, so a smaller, easier to manipulate state was carved off as a replacement). The success of Panama only inspired others, and two years down the line, Gran Colombia is struggling to put down revolts and keep itself together.

An early WW1 analogue throws everything into chaos, and an already unstable Gran Colombia doesn't survive when the shit hits the fan. The result; complete balkanisation.


In 1864, William Seward's National Whig/Liberty ticket defeated incumbent President Graham Fitch, and immediately his abolitionist talk set off a secession crisis across the South. As the situation developed, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, and Louisiana seceded from the United States, and met in Terminus, Georgia to form a unified government against “Northern Tyranny”. They hammered together a Constitution for the so-called Commonwealth of Free States, and were joined by delegations from Texas, Tennessee, Comanche, Missouri, Kentucky, Virginia, and Maryland (Although the latter four were actually splinter governments from their states that voted not to secede). The Commonwealth then signed treaties of cooperation with the governments of various native tribes in Sequoyah, and with the Riograndese.

It was a hard fought six years in the First American Civil War (Or as it was known in the South, the First Southron War), but eventually it was defeated, with the various secessionists undergoing a process of “Swift Reconstruction” This process also included annexation and dissolution of the Riogrande Republic, and an attempt to squash out Southron nationalism. With a few exceptions, they failed.

In 1908-1909, Southron Nationalism bubbled up again with Pershing's coup of the US Government and the subsequent Second American Civil War. This time, only North Carolina, Tennessee, South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, and Florida seceded, and a Louisiana delegation only controlling the region immediately around the Mississippi River. Nonetheless, these states succeeded in forming an independent Southron Republic (Henceforth known as the Second Republic), it featured a segregation system not unlike Apartheid. This system held for nearly 60 years despite some flareups of violence here and there. But then in 1969, the American-funded Cumberland Free State, and Southron-African People's Front, and the Gallic-funded New African Liberation Front began a full-scale rebellion against the Second Republic. East Tennessee was almost immediately lost to the Appalachian Militias at the onset, and the 1983 Treaty of Austin saw the Second Republic reduced to only its land south of the 31st Parrallel North.

In the aftermath of that humiliating loss, Extremist (By Southron Standards) forces overthrew the civilian government and replaced it with a puppet government, that has remained an isolationist dictatorship ever since.

MotF 162: I Ain't the Sharpest Tool in the Shed

The Challenge

Make a map showing a country that is significantly behind the times in terms of technology and science.
Isaac Beach (previously HowAboutThisForAName): [1]

In 1945 Madrid was falling to the thorough advance of British, Portuguese[1] and American troops alongside Catalonian insurgents, sure to knock the Spanish State out of the Second World War. Many would ponder what would have been had Francisco Franco not come down on the side the Axis Powers, yet that is not the concern of this disquisition[2]. For as Fascist Europe blinkered it's final days in the sun a more subtle escapade was taking place among what little remained of the Spanish Navy and the Army of Africa.
Pragmatic and well aware of their vulnerability, these disheveled remnants found their way to the largely untouched Fernando Pó. With greater conflicts further north and resources stretched thin as the War in the Pacific raged on as frighteningly as ever, the territory had been left alone by the Allies and so the last bedraggles of Spain faced little opposition in occupying it. Lead by the decorated Admiral Francisco Moreno[3], they went about fortifying the island into a veritable bastion. They put out the call for any other Spanish, German or Italian remnants to make their way to the island, and from those hidden coves and edges of the War a few battered cruisers anchored in Santa Isabel, and lonesome pilots made their way to the airstrip at Punta Europa. When the Allies realised that the island was now occupied by what amounted to a small field army they were far too mired in the invasion of Völkisch Germany and Imperial Japan to bother with it and signed a separate ceasefire with the army with a country.
Post-1946, the ensuring Cold War and reconstruction meant that eyes were elsewhere whilst the military clique built up their personal fiefdom. However it was quickly outmatched in arms, telecommunications, naval technology and even mundane areas as arts (they were frozen in their Falangist period) and music. Sanctions as to their totalitarian politics and repressive society aside, the world moved on, unwilling and in some respects incapable of facing the Hermit in the Gulf. During the Cold War they would be a center of espionage and this would flare into a long series of spy novels that would in turn stimulate a bare tourist economy, but this would die in time as the novelty of an 'authoritarian paradise' gave way to a regressive, violent and cruel regime as the junta cracked down on the new ideas and philosophies that were disseminating out into their populace[4].
Today, the people grow restless. The government, lead by Francisco Moreno's son, seems as total and supreme as ever. But in this age of information young people notice that even their neighbours in Cameroon have smartphones whilst they still have to use a telephone exchange in many instances, they notice social media and video streaming abroad when they still adhere to letters and VHS, they notice the critical appraisals of leaders abroad when any opprobrium of their leader and his cult of personality is met with a harsh admonition at the least and labour camps at worse[5]. Whether the last fascist state in the world can last in the 21st Century remains to be seen[6], and wary eyes lay on the Hermit in the Gulf.


[1] - Because they won't remain neutral if their neighbour is in the Axis, c'mon now.
[2] - "Isaac dodged! it's not very effective."
[3] - I think he was alive at this point. D'you know how hard it is to find information on Francoist Spain's Admiralty?
[4] - A little bit like Cuba actually, only fascist instead of communist.
[5] - Not sure if there are any countries today that still use a telephone exchange, so that might be a bit extreme in terms of technological disparity, but it reads well.
[6] - Whilst most of this is convergent with OTL history post-1945, certain aspects like North Korea are different, which arose out of rather particular circumstances. North Korea still exists, but is more like a mini-China herein than the cartoonishly evil dictatorship it is IOTL.


[1] Dain-Siegfried on Deviantart
MotF 163: Making Another Mark on the Map

The Challenge

Make a map showing an artificially created landmass or body of water.

The Restrictions
There are no restrictions on when the PoD of your map should be. Fantasy, sci-fi, and future maps are allowed.

Map isn't very refined because i don't have time to finish it and post closer to end date of contest.
So, on map we see megaproject of flooding two large depresions in area similar to Ukraine steppes. First map is "before" state with first notes about project, second show final state of project.

Map by Reagent; Description by @Flashman

Mittelafrikanisch Autobahnkarte

The sweeping victory of the Central Powers over the Triple Entente in the so-called "Great War" propelled the German Empires to new heights. In addition to their newfound territorial and diplomatic gains in Europe, the Germans would also inherit a massive colonial empire from their defeated foes. Most prominently, the "Peace of Geneva" that brought an end to the war gave the Germans one of their long-term strategic aims - dominance over "Mittelafrika", connecting their colonies in Cameroon and East Africa by way of the former Belgian Congo and French Equatorial Africa

Immediately, the Germans set about establishing their rule in the Congo, raising flags and deploying troops. While at first the Germans were happy to emulate the horrific business model perfected by Leopold II, as the price of rubber decreased in the 20s, Germany sought undertook longer-term investments in the region. A variety of projects and reforms were examined and implemented to make the region more humane, more profitable, and more German (culturally and racially). These projects ranged from transplanting entire German villages to darker programs of genocide against the indigenous populations. Ethnic Germans living in the Russian Empire, scapegoated for the defeat of the Russian Armies at the hands of the Kaiser’s Heer, formed a large contingent of the settlers sent to Mittelafrika during the 1920s.

One project, however, would capture the imagination of the German Colonial Administration. A young bright-eyed engineer named Hermann Sorgel approached the government, with a bold initiative: dam the Congo, and create a massive central African sea in the Congo basin. Sorgel claimed this would create a more moderate climate, provide excess water to irrigate the less temperate regions of Mittelafrika, stabilize the water level of Lake Chad, and most of all, to generate a tremendous amount of electricity, a necessity for both the burgeoning industry of the Lower Congo, and for the extensive air conditioning that the German plan to move German settlers into the heart of Mittelafrika required.

Building of several smaller-scale and "test" dams occurred over the course of the next decade, slowly flooding the lowest regions of the basin in anticipation of the eventual sea, named the Wilhelmmeer for Kaiser Wilhelm II, the Kaiser whose tenure oversaw its construction.

The primary construction, however, was the Kaiser Wilhelm II Dam. The Kaiser Wilhelm II Dam was to be the largest dam ever built, consisting of some 22 million cubic meters of concrete when finished, dwarfing the Smith Dam being built in Nevada at the same time. Construction was slow going, with the German administration only willing to devote so much time and money to it. It did, however, have one major advantage behind it: the German administration went from village to village, forcibly removing tribespeople, taking them to the dam, and commanding them to get to work. The more people it displaced, the more laborers it had. Soon, a massive tent city, termed "Sorgelstadt", had sprung up in the shadow of the dam.

While the filling of the basin was slow to begin with, things would speed up significantly after the “Red Decade” of the 1940s. After a resurgent Russian Empire was discovered to have been directly aiding Ukrainian Partisans in Galicia and Lodomeria, Europe, while still in a state of economic depression, again descended into war. However, the “Second Great War” would not resemble the lightning fast conflict of the first. Against a more prepared Russian and French foe, the German Heer was soon bogged down and trench warfare took hold. As the war entered its second winter, progress remained elusive for either side, as body counts continued to rise. Despite this, the governments of Europe refused to initiate peace talks, and pressed the war effort onward.

On Christmas Eve of 1942, conscripted troops on both sides, sick of fighting in an aimless war unilaterally initiated truces with their opponents and refused orders from their respective governments to continue fighting. As European governments attempted to compel the disobedient units to fight again, they quickly lost control of the situation. Against orders to fire on their “mutinous” compatriots, large-scale mutinies broke out among the remainder of the armies.

Marxist elements were able to take advantage of this chaos to seize power across Europe. As the far-left took control, the Imperial and Capitalistic governments of Europe fled to their colonies, alongside millions of citizens who could escape the Reds. These governments-in-exile would found the "League of European Anti-Marxist States", an alliance of the "Free World" to eventually re-take Europe from the revolutionaries. Premiere among these was, without a doubt, the German empire in Mittelafrika

The need for rapid industrialization prompted by the exodus sent the building of the dam into overdrive and, in 1951, Kaiser Wilhelm III unveiled the Kaiser Wilhelm II Dam, truly a marvel of the modern world. Two miles long, 255 meters tall, and generating 24,000 megawatts of electricity, made of so much concrete that it's estimated that it will take 400 years for the concrete to totally cure. A highway stretches across it, accommodating those who need to cross the river, and the thousands of dam workers who live in the adjacent Sorgelstadt.

The dam certainly has been a boon to Mittelafrika, generating a tremendous amount of power both for industry and air conditioning, irrigating arid land, and creating a venue for speedy boat travel across the nation. Of course, it has not been all good. On the one hand, as the sea has gotten larger and larger, it's started to experience its own currents and weather patterns. Sitting as it did right in the middle of the tropics, it started to become the birthplace of miniature hurricanes that would wrack and devastate the coastlines of the Wilhelmmeer. There was also the rapid soil erosion and the failure of Colonial administration to completely clear cut the forests, resulting in large coastal mires of rotting trees and mud, fertile breeding ground for mosquitoes, most infamously in the so-call "Malaria Coast" near to Bangui.

By 2017, the Wilhelmmeer is approaching its final height. Mittelafrika continues to claim its territories in Continental Europe, but few take those claims seriously. The Marxist states of Europe, despite several tumultuous periods (including the First and Second Fraternal Wars fought between rival ideological strains of Marxism that drove further refugees to Mittelafrika), have managed to cling on, and relations are slowly being normalized between the powers.

Efforts continue to Germanize the people of Mittelafrika, both by encouraging the growth of the White population, and the spread of Germanic culture among the Africans. Ostensibly, suffrage is race blind, a plutocratic system. In the lower house, each income quintile is allotted a set number of seats proportionate to the amount of tax revenue they pay to the central government in Wilhelmstadt. In practice, this means that the Whites control a supermajority of seats. Given the barriers put in place to hinder African economic advancement, this situation will likely continue for the near future. A significant mixed race population exists and is beginning to seek political representation, while the traditional cultures of the tribes being eroded by German televisions, Blue Jeans, and Fanta Orange.

Meanwhile, the Reichsautobahn ties the country together. Begun in the 20s to link Boma to Dar-es-Salaam, today it links every corner of the country, representing the victory of Germany over the Heart of Darkness (though the fact that they drowned half of it probably helped). Germans have fallen in love with the Autobahn, driving from the deserts of Tschad to the jungles of Kongo to the snow-capped peaks of Kiwu, listening to their rock-and-roll music, drinking their Fanta.

Meanwhile, the Kaiser sits in the relatively central and temperate climes of Wilhelmstadt, from whence he governs what remains of the Kaiserreich. The times may be a changing, with an increasing movement to make suffrage universally equal, the increasing power of the Reichstag, and rumors of Red militias among the jungle tribes. And yet, the Heer serves at his pleasure, and the world hangs on his every word. The Emperor of a land built on blood and iron, and he knows one thing to be true in his heart:

Gott mit uns!