I recently saw this question and this related question which give a map of a fictional world and ask "how realistic is it?". The first concerns city and country placement, while the second is related to geography. Certainly, these are useful questions to ask about a fictional world, but I was previously of the understanding this sort of question was off-topic for this site.
I'm not really concerned with getting the linked questions closed or anything. Rather, I've had similar questions myself I've refrained from asking, and would like to ask. If these types of questions are on-topic, are there specific guidelines for asking them in a manner that stay on-topic?
Specific questions, such as the numerous topics in the creating a realistic world series, make sense to me. Each question has a specific context, and answers can be reasonably ranked as "this works well for me" or "meh".
"Check my work" questions like those I linked, however, seem to be primarily opinion-based, and rather ambiguous. Additionally, such questions could get very complex.
As an example of this complexity, the world I'm building currently has four major factions with 2000 years of "recent history" plus another 15000 years of older history. I've accounted for 500 years of nuclear fallout that initially killed most of the people on the planet, then forced the survivors into specific, mostly-unaffected regions, then allowed slow expansion as the fallout dissipated. I've tried to account for growth and setbacks based on local climate, geography, and faction mindsets.
At this point, I've barely scratched the surface, but I've already got several thousand words describing simple relationships and origins of various physical and social features of my planet. And now I'm delving into the more complex task of writing more detailed histories of the capital cities of each faction, which will likely require at least cursory histories of nearby cities and major trade partnerships.
In short, just describing my current map and political boundaries seem like they would be too long for this site. Let alone trying to make someone wade through all of it to make specific suggestions for fixing problems.
On the other hand, relatively simple worlds like that originally linked likely don't have enough detail that it really matters if they're realistic. In that case, the question is really more about "are there any really egregious errors I should fix before doing the actual worldbuilding?", and less about proper worldbuilding. Additionally, most questions short enough to really work on the site are likely simple because of a lack of effort or research, rather than because of a concisely-written, but still nuanced, question.
In summary, I understand that getting feedback on a world you're currently building is useful. However, I'm concerned that short questions will tend to fall into the "do my homework for me" category, and questions with reasonable levels of worldbuilding will tend to be too long and/or complex to fit the site's format.
Should we avoid creating more questions of this nature, or, if not, how should we format the questions to stay on topic?