I need points of reference for world-building. My setting of choice takes inspiration from mythical Greece, so I’ve devoted a lot of time to drawing connections between the places I’m most familiar with — Southern California — and the places I want to represent in fiction and roleplaying — Greece.

Like many (er, all?) children who went through the California education system, I participated in the California Fourth Grade Mission Project. So infamous is this school assignment, that it has its own Wikipedia page.

Link: California 4th Grade Mission Project

Perhaps the most memorable point of interest for me was the distance between each Mission — one day’s journey on horseback, or three days on foot — which comes out to be about 30 miles. The longest distance between two points in Greece is no more than about 600 kilometers, or 370 miles by land.

If traveling across Greece were as simple a matter as going in a straight line (hint: it isn’t) then you could argue that it occupies a little bit less than two-thirds the distance of the entire “Mission Trail,” which was about 600 miles in length.

Since I like to use Settlers of Catan to help me determine the rough layout of a region for use in roleplaying, I’ve long struggled with the “actual size” of a hexagon in Catan, but determining the area of a hexagon is basically an arbitrary choice.

What I’ve decided is that the minimum distance between settlements in Catan (2 sides) is the equivalent of a day’s travel on foot, or about 10 miles — which I’m also using as the “diameter” of a hexagon for determining area and such.

There’s a lot of other information I’m still compiling, and I guess that’s why I never finished that one post detailing everything I’d figured out to that point — but now I have some numbers which I hope will help me in my mapping efforts.