Worldbuilding Development Prompt: Code of Conduct


What moral codes do the civilizations within your world follow?

Do these civilizations each have their own unique understanding of morality, or do they share a singular sense of ethics? If the former, then in what ways do these societies differ and in what ways do they remain similar? Has this always been the way, or was there a time when mankind acted and thought as one?

Are these codes passed down through the written word or oral speech? For example, a religious organization might pass down their code of conduct through a sacred text, while a nomadic clan might rely on spoken wisdom.

At the time that your story takes place, which moral mindsets are celebrated, which are outdated, and which are extinct? For example, in our modern day world, we half-jokingly claim that chivalry is dead. Have other ethical codes shared in chivalry’s fate? If so, what caused them to die off? Are there still those fighting to revive them?

What happens to those who break or defy these codes? Are they imprisoned, fined, ostracized, or even killed? Has anyone who has stood against these codes made an impact on the culture in a significant manner?

How have the similarities and differences in cultural morality created conflict within the world? Have wars been waged, relationships torn asunder, entire kingdoms dissolved? On the other hand, how have these moral codes helped the planet to prosper? Have they beautified the environment, united unlikely allies, or promoted peace and art and love across the continents?

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