New forum fantasy RPG campaign?

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MuadMouse
Captain (Level 20)
11354 XP

(EDIT: the game is now running, but I can still write in new characters. If you'd like to join up send me a PM)

There's this fantasy RPG setting that's been bouncing around inside my skull for over a year now, and I thought I'd bring it here to see if anyone might be interested in exploring it and expanding it. I invite players to add to the world whatever their character backgrounds require, and are free to contribute to the setting (with my approval, of course). It's worked wonderfully in Dungeon World campaigns in real life, so why not here.

The starting point for this Tolkien-esque world is a set of generic assumptions (basically things I want to see in the game myself):

- elves are physically incorruptible: they do not wither or die with age, succumb to disease, nor does their flesh rot shold the spirit leave it.

- the dwarven claim that their ancestors sprang from bedrock is supported by the fact that in death dwarves turn to stone.

- all non-human races should have equally fundamental differences from humans

- halflings, whether as their own race or an offshoot of humans, exists, and they have all the pastoral charm of Tolkien's hobbits.

- there are many gods, and even more forms of worship (so we can have authoritarian quasi-Catholics rubbing shoulders with medieval Rastafarians... because schisms are fun!)

Overall, I'm looking for variety and weirdness similar to Dragonlance's Krynn, Runequest's Glorantha, Tamriel from The Elder Scrolls games, or the worlds the fevered imaginations of Robert E. Howard and Fritz Leiber spat up.

I haven't decided on the mechanics yet, but will probably go for something like the Turn-based Play used in Our tavern game.

The game should run no slower than one post per week, preferably around two posts per week.

So, anyone interested? Comments, ideas, questions?

A committed user and abuser of roleplaying games. Based in Oulu, Finland.

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Ioanna
Master (Level 23)
15937 XP

I am always interested!! I like the fact that you leave open space for players to add to the world...

I will sleep on it and get back here for discussion...

I have a banning whip and I 'm not afraid to use it! *I am bluffing*

jewellersapprentice.wordpress.com

Sapient
Soldier (Level 12)
2268 XP

You have piqued my curiosity. What type of game will it be: action, adventure, mystery, or none of the above?

MuadMouse
Captain (Level 20)
11354 XP

Posted by SapientYou have piqued my curiosity. What type of game will it be: action, adventure, mystery, or none of the above?

Out of these, I'd say adventure with a fair amount of action and mystery. World-building is central to this game, so exploration would be the key word, I think. I expect to be learning about this world along with my players.

A committed user and abuser of roleplaying games. Based in Oulu, Finland.

Sapient
Soldier (Level 12)
2268 XP

Posted by MuadMouseOut of these, I'd say adventure with a fair amount of action and mystery. World-building is central to this game, so exploration would be the key word, I think. I expect to be learning about this world along with my players.

World-building, hmm. I'd be interested to try it out. Do you think a Warforged from Eberron would fit in your setting?

MuadMouse
Captain (Level 20)
11354 XP

Posted by SapientWorld-building, hmm. I'd be interested to try it out. Do you think a Warforged from Eberron would fit in your setting?

I.e. a sentient golem? Yeah, why not, but let's "make it our own" by adding something to the core concept of an artificial creature that divorces it from any Eberron-bound preconceptions (renaming the race is also in order, for the same reason).

Do you have a character concept beyond race? Also, if you have any ideas about the race, I'd be glad to hear them (please assume anyone reading this has never had any contact with Eberron, and if you can write so that someone who's never encountered a fantasy RPG understands it, all the better)!

Since I've already established that dwarves turn to stone upon death, these creatures of yours would probably prove problematic for them as "fakes", or pretenders at life, even abominations akin to zombies ot Frankenstein's monster. "Problematic" of course means that they will probably have strong opinions about the matter, one way or another.

Which reminds me, I'm not a fan of monocultures: every community has its own way of doing things, and while physical restrictions will dictate a certain baseline, I like for every culture to be distinct and individual (without a reason on the level of divine intervention). This allows for greater latitude for creativity and helps make sense of the world for its realism.

But enough prattling from me - bring out the creatures!

A committed user and abuser of roleplaying games. Based in Oulu, Finland.

MuadMouse
Captain (Level 20)
11354 XP

One important point I'd like to raise at this point, though: everything is negotiable until actual play begins. We'll all develop a consensus about the spirit of the campaign and the setting before characters are finalized - this way we'll at least know we're headed in the same general direction with this project.

I welcome everyone's ideas (even from people not participating in the game itself) about the game world, and will try to accommodate them into the embryonic core I have twirling around in my head. Oftentimes I'll make changes to the idea to both maintain a sense of mystery and help me keep the world manageable.

Which reminds me: only that which the player characters have experienced can be called true - the rest is just rumour and hearsay.

I make these disclaimers now so that no one gets scared off or disappointed by the actual process. The idea is after all to enjoy creative freedom. And remember: freedom is mandatory!

A committed user and abuser of roleplaying games. Based in Oulu, Finland.

MuadMouse
Captain (Level 20)
11354 XP

And to spam some more, but this time on a very practical note: I'll eventually put up a campaign wiki on Obsidian Portal where we can gather all the important stuff we've established about the world without having to plough through untold pages of forum thread. All players will have the ability to contribute to and edit the wiki.

A committed user and abuser of roleplaying games. Based in Oulu, Finland.

Sapient
Soldier (Level 12)
2268 XP

Posted by MuadMouseI.e. a sentient golem? Yeah, why not, but let's "make it our own" by adding something to the core concept of an artificial creature that divorces it from any Eberron-bound preconceptions (renaming the race is also in order, for the same reason).

Excellent. I've been unable to come up with a name that sounds as cool as Warforged. "Halfmetal" maybe? But I was thinking of a concept more like a Soulforged. Possible spoiler: the production of Halfmetals was outlawed after the discovery that a dark secret of necromancy lay behind their creation, as each automaton required a trapped soul to animate it. And although the golem has no way of interracting with the soul, it does occaisionally experience a memory, feeling, or dream vicariously -- sometimes revealing a hint of the former life.

Posted by MuadMouseDo you have a character concept beyond race?

For his personality, I'm definitely thinking curious and naive, which would be typical for the race. I've got a few ideas for a special twist that sets him apart, but I haven't decided which I like best yet. But if you have any suggestions or recommendations for me, let me know.

Posted by MuadMouseAlso, if you have any ideas about the race, I'd be glad to hear them (please assume anyone reading this has never had any contact with Eberron, and if you can write so that someone who's never encountered a fantasy RPG understands it, all the better)!Since I've already established that dwarves turn to stone upon death, these creatures of yours would probably prove problematic for them as "fakes", or pretenders at life, even abominations akin to zombies ot Frankenstein's monster. "Problematic" of course means that they will probably have strong opinions about the matter, one way or another.

Yes, I am definitely envisioning them as social outsiders who are nonetheless valued for their useful qualities. Abominations? Maybe. Although, they would have served a wide variety of roles before gaining freedom, so most humans wouldn't see them as abominations... closer to ex-slaves, at the bottom of the social order.

Posted by MuadMouseWhich reminds me, I'm not a fan of monocultures: every community has its own way of doing things, and while physical restrictions will dictate a certain baseline, I like for every culture to be distinct and individual (without a reason on the level of divine intervention). This allows for greater latitude for creativity and helps make sense of the world for its realism.

Oh definitely, I agree with you there. If you are referring to the Eberron description of Warforged it does sound very monoculture. But keep in mind that is just describing the prototypical Warforged. In practice, the ones you end up adventuring with have a high percentage of eccentricity. This is like the Drizzt effect where you never adventure with the standard Drow.

MuadMouse
Captain (Level 20)
11354 XP

Posted by SapientBut I was thinking of a concept more like a Soulforged. Possible spoiler: the production of Halfmetals was outlawed after the discovery that a dark secret of necromancy lay behind their creation, as each automaton required a trapped soul to animate it. And although the golem has no way of interracting with the soul, it does occaisionally experience a memory, feeling, or dream vicariously -- sometimes revealing a hint of the former life.

I like "Soulforged". It's very descriptive of their nature in a literal sense, which is to be expected when engineers name things. The idea of necromantic animation and soul echoes makes them a sensible addition to the world and provides a lot of stuff for me to work with.

For his personality, I'm definitely thinking curious and naive, which would be typical for the race. I've got a few ideas for a special twist that sets him apart, but I haven't decided which I like best yet. But if you have any suggestions or recommendations for me, let me know.

I think personality traits will emerge organically when we have other characters for your Soulforged to relate to.

Yes, I am definitely envisioning them as social outsiders who are nonetheless valued for their useful qualities. Abominations? Maybe. Although, they would have served a wide variety of roles before gaining freedom, so most humans wouldn't see them as abominations... closer to ex-slaves, at the bottom of the social order.

Gotcha. People tend to be slow to discard their nifty toys.

Oh definitely, I agree with you there. If you are referring to the Eberron description of Warforged it does sound very monoculture. But keep in mind that is just describing the prototypical Warforged. In practice, the ones you end up adventuring with have a high percentage of eccentricity. This is like the Drizzt effect where you never adventure with the standard Drow.

My befuddled rant was rather directed at depictions of non-humans in games in general - for example, one dwarven stronghold tends to be much like another in most settings I've seen, the differences being more architectural than cultural. My weary mind seems to have meandered off there...

A committed user and abuser of roleplaying games. Based in Oulu, Finland.

Ioanna
Master (Level 23)
15937 XP

Well I am back!!

I haven't heard the "Eberron Warforged" but sounds great. If I am not mistaken, it's a golem but instead of being willingless (if that's a word) the soul actually plays a role to it. A little bit of golem and a little bit of Fullmetal alchemist Elric brother?

I have a banning whip and I 'm not afraid to use it! *I am bluffing*

jewellersapprentice.wordpress.com

MuadMouse
Captain (Level 20)
11354 XP

Posted by Ioanna Well I am back!!

Welcome back! Are you joining up?

I haven't heard the "Eberron Warforged" but sounds great. If I am not mistaken, it's a golem but instead of being willingless (if that's a word) the soul actually plays a role to it. A little bit of golem and a little bit of Fullmetal alchemist Elric brother?

That's pretty much as I understand them. We'll see exactly what sort of creatures they end up as in this game.

A committed user and abuser of roleplaying games. Based in Oulu, Finland.

Ioanna
Master (Level 23)
15937 XP

Posted by MuadMouseWelcome back! Are you joining up?

I definitely am!!

Although I don't know yet at which direction to go... Do you have any suggestions, anything you would want to try out?

I have a banning whip and I 'm not afraid to use it! *I am bluffing*

jewellersapprentice.wordpress.com

MuadMouse
Captain (Level 20)
11354 XP

Posted by IoannaI definitely am!! Although I don't know yet at which direction to go... Do you have any suggestions, anything you would want to try out?

Excellent!

I'd be curious what you'd make of the elves or dwarves I described in my initial post. Or better yet, how would you like to set up a human civilization? You have quite a bit of latitude, so if there's a culture that intrigues you, feel free to implement it!

A committed user and abuser of roleplaying games. Based in Oulu, Finland.

Werwolf
Soldier (Level 12)
2192 XP

When do you intend to start this campaign? I don't mean the exact date but a month or a number of parcipitants.

Please correct me if I'm wrong. You wrote 'Tolkien-esque world'. I assume you mean rather a world based on what Tolkien wrote and not material like in the movie Wizards (1977).

"Games are an interesting diversion from everyday life. Games give you a chance to excel, and if you're playing in good company, you don't even mind you lose because you had the enjoyment of the company during the course of the game." Gary Gygax

MuadMouse
Captain (Level 20)
11354 XP

Posted by WerwolfWhen do you intend to start this campaign? I don't mean the exact date but a month or a number of parcipitants.

I'm hoping we'll get to actual play early next month, but that's flexible. Two participants is enough to get us going but more are definitely welcome! I haven't set an upper limit to the number of players because I don't know how many this sort of forum game can accommodate.

EDIT: I'll add here that I'll accept players even after the game has started - we'll find a way to write them in.

Please correct me if I'm wrong. You wrote 'Tolkien-esque world'. I assume you mean rather a world based on what Tolkien wrote and not material like in the movie Wizards (1977).

By "Tolkien-esque world" I basically mean any pre-industrial world with gods, magic, elves and dwarves, and similar basic trappings one would expect from a fantasy setting. Tolkien's Middle-earth is atmospheric and immersive, and those are characteristics I'd like to see in this 'original' world we're creating. And in comparison to Wizards, I definitely don't want to mix high technology into my fantasy game settings - I like the physics of my fantastic worlds to be flexible, just so I can say "a wizard/god/unicorn did it."

I'm tempted to go into Tolkien's thoughts on "sub-creation" here, but I think I'll just be content with saying that I hope we'll take some familiar building blocks of the fantasy genre and end up with something we can feel is our own and wonderful!

A committed user and abuser of roleplaying games. Based in Oulu, Finland.

Werwolf
Soldier (Level 12)
2192 XP

I'd like to join. As for my charakter. I'm still in the process of finding "the right one", but it'll be a member of one of the following species:

- Blackorc from Titans RPG

- Human Native from the North-American or the Middle-European area

- Obsidiman from Earthdawn RPG

- Human barbarian (like Larn from Fire & Ice)

- something really strange & weird, like a corporeal being, capable of controlling one element or state of soul (I have to and will think a lot about this one.)

- pak'ma'ra from Babylon 5

Edit: Insectoids like Thri-Kreen (D&D) or Crab-People (South Park) also appeal to me.

"Games are an interesting diversion from everyday life. Games give you a chance to excel, and if you're playing in good company, you don't even mind you lose because you had the enjoyment of the company during the course of the game." Gary Gygax

Ioanna
Master (Level 23)
15937 XP

Posted by MuadMouseExcellent!I'd be curious what you'd make of the elves or dwarves I described in my initial post. Or better yet, how would you like to set up a human civilization? You have quite a bit of latitude, so if there's a culture that intrigues you, feel free to implement it!

Hmmm. how about (that's only some thinking) a civilization close to the one described for Atlantis. A wealthy compex of Islands, center of culture and trade. The people there live a good life, but when you take some things for granted you always want more. Feeling bitter for the elven "superiority" and the "sturdiness" of the dwarfs, the high counsil ordered a variety of scientists and Alchemists to conduct experiments and create features to humans that would excel all living beings. Orphans would disappear and eventually the people of Atlantis would find out what is happening. There would be the ones against this attrocity that creates miasmata against the words of GOD and the ones that believe that since God has given us the tools to conduct these experiments there is nothing wrong with them. And there you have your schism!!!

The experiments would focus on giving traits of the four elements to humans. Because of the schism people would start to fight each other and one day the base that the experiments were conducted would be blown into peaces... not knowing if there are any survivors or not.

How did I get this idea...?

In Naruto there was a village of people living in a huge complex of caves. These people were "cursed" to be able to turn themselves at will into air. Passing through small gaps, being able to fly high and some other things were their powers but none could leave the cave because with a gust of wind they would disperse and die....

I wanna be one!!! I mean I want to play one...

If werewolf plays someone that can control the elements we could make it work. I would not vanish into thin air and he could make a weapon thing.. out of me. Do I make any sense?

Also at this point I would like to point out that I have no idea how to built something like that with stats....

I have a banning whip and I 'm not afraid to use it! *I am bluffing*

jewellersapprentice.wordpress.com

Werwolf
Soldier (Level 12)
2192 XP

Posted by IoannaIf werwolf plays someone that can control the elements we could make it work. I would not vanish into thin air and he could make a weapon thing.. out of me.

I see a good opportunity for social interaction between our two potential characters as well as a huge problem regarding the dependency of your eventual character towards mine. There are a multitude of situations in which mine could lose control and thus almost instantly doom yours.

Nevertheless I find this idea of yours quite seductive. I've never played a character with a strong relationship (like sibling/S.O./telepathic mate) towards another one.

"Games are an interesting diversion from everyday life. Games give you a chance to excel, and if you're playing in good company, you don't even mind you lose because you had the enjoyment of the company during the course of the game." Gary Gygax

Ioanna
Master (Level 23)
15937 XP

Posted by WerwolfNevertheless I find this idea of yours quite seductive. I've never played a character with a strong relationship (like sibling/S.O./telepathic mate) towards another one.

Me too! We always try to make the character powerfull and wonderfull and with a great goal. Self preservation is never the matter.

Let's what the GM will say and take it from there.

I have a banning whip and I 'm not afraid to use it! *I am bluffing*

jewellersapprentice.wordpress.com