The world map is one of several preselected maps. After Oryx summons the players to battle him, the server changes to a different map. Different game servers will be using different maps at any given time.
This map shows the outline of one of the current worlds (World 13 to be exact) and all 3 roads:
The maps are large, continent-sized islands which include:
In this area, the enemies pose minimal threat. They don’t hit hard and their attacks are easy to dodge. Beach is the only biome found in this area. This area includes a single type of wandering quest enemy (the Bandit leader) along with a “stay in place” quest enemy (the Scorpion Queen).
In this area, enemies are relatively easy but are more numerous. In certain locations, swarms of enemies can be seen. This biome is divided from driest to wettest into desert, grassland, forest, and swampland. All quest enemies found in this elevation are wandering quest enemies.
In this area, the enemies are the most erratic, and it can be very hard to dodge their attacks. Being careless in this region can be fatal for lone low-level adventurers, but it’s still acceptable to fight enemies here with basic equipment. Reasonably well-equipped level-20 players will have little trouble in this area. This area includes both wandering quest enemies and quest area enemies. Biomes in this region (from driest to wettest) are desert, savanna, grasslands and forests. Desert biome is rather rare in this area.
While the attacks of the enemies in this area are not as erratic as in midlands, and though they can be dodged with some care, it’s still easy to die here. Attacks here pack a lot of punch, and proper equipment is recommended to travel alone. All quest enemies in this area are located in specific structures. Biomes in this region are the same as in midlands, except that desert is rarer. Lesser gods spawn in this area and drop Snake Pits, a good source of speed potions and the elusive Bulwark Wand. Also, Urgles, infamous for their ability to armor break, spawn here. Players should be aware of Urgles, especially when eventing in the midlands.
This area is most commonly called Godlands by players. This area harbours the strongest monsters (mainly Gods) found in the main Realm. Travelling alone or with poor stats may lead to death without caution. Many enemies in this region have elaborate bullet patterns. The mountains include a snowy area and a rocky area sometimes known as the Godlands. Lava fissures are present in this area with chests in the middle of each fissure.
Build 106 uses 13 maps (currently in use) accessable here.
Build 104 features newer maps than build 100. Terrain features are generally smoother and less angular, with a more gradual transition between different terrain types. The shape of the landmasses is more complex, with more bays and peninsulas. Roads and rivers are improved. The world maps are generated every few months, and every time Oryx destroys the world one of the 20 maps is randomly chosen for the new world.
The creation of geographical features (but not quest areas, vegetation, terrain types, or monsters) for build 100 and up is described in these blog posts:
Build 92 through 99 had twenty maps in rotation. Earlier builds had a single map. These maps were created using Perlin Noise. See amitp’s post on map creation for more information.