Inspired by criticism late in this thread, what are some examples of mobile (ground based) cities in fiction? the first that comes to mind for me is in* 2312 *by KSR, which includes a city on Mercury, constantly moving on rails to stay at the terminator. I was aware of a similar city in aChristopher Priest novel that I haven’t read and Lando Calrissian’s Nomad City. Any more notible ones that I and TV Tropes am missing?
Snowpiercer is set on a train that’s basically a moving city.
The city Zodanga in John Carter (film. I don’t know if it was mobile in the book)
Maybe the mobile factory in The Gone-Away World by Harkaway?
You specify ground-based, so I guess James Blish’s Cities in Flight don’t count.
The Black Fortress in Krull.
How about the road towns in The Roads Must Roll?
And, thus, the city of Boston, placed in a spaceship to escape the explosion of Earth, doesn’t count, either.
James Blish’s Cities in Flight has big earth cities taking off into space.
Zodanga isn’t a moving city in Burroughs’s John Carter novels, but they made it one in the film, supposedly inspired by the city being described as in two different locations in the books.
In the Roads must Roll the major cities are fixed in place, but you could argue that the establishments on those moving roads constitute moving cities of their own. Possibly the same could be read for the roadways in Asimov’s Caves of Steel.
While kind of a cool concept, the idea of a mobile city is absurd. It is typically far more efficient to use lots of smaller vehicles to bring resources to the city, rather than put a city on massive tracks and have it go to the resources.
Atlantis in Stargate: Atlantis is a city which can float in the water or fly in space; I don’t know if it was possible for it to settle on land. Not sure if that counts, but the link in the OP includes Jim Rockford’s mobile home, so maybe TV Tropes is setting the bar a little low on this one.
Maybe Kandor, the shrunken-down capital city of Krypton? It doesn’t move on its own, but it’s small enough to be carried around. Mostly it just sits in a glass jar.
In the novel based on the classic Infocom text adventure game, there’s a whole planet of mobile mecha cities. Varieties include- dog, duck, porcupine, and one shaped like an egg.
How has nobody mentioned Swift’s Laputa?
Also, has anyone mentioned the floating city in Bioshock?
OP said “ground-based.”
I’ll throw in another non-example: Armada, the floating pirate-city in China Mieville’s novel The Scar.
That one Transformer that was basically a giant city and had other transformers living in him in his disguised state.
“Doctor Who” featured a mobile planet.
Charles Stross’s sf novel Saturn’s Children, about Asimovian robots colonizing the Solar System after the mysterious mass extinction of humanity, has the same thing, IIRC.