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 Post subject: Brainstorming for a new home game
PostPosted: Sat Dec 19, 2015 11:45 am 

Joined: Fri Dec 13, 2013 5:44 pm
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Location: Cajun Country
So I've been away from the community for a while with life. My regular gaming group has me running a game after our current campaign wraps up. This leaves me with a few months to work on this. I would like to have a story that makes sense and fits with known facts, but once we get started I'm not worried about keeping with the official story line, the world will become theirs and I want their actions to be the driving force.

So here are some world events and concepts I'm looking at and want some help to develop how the party learns them and make sure they don't conflict with existing thing I don't know about.

First is that I'd like the campaign to go through the reveal of the Val'Inares secret to the public. Likely driven by the Khitani and their rejection of Anshar. Perhaps the sleeping emperor reveals it and then the Khitani take actions to make the humans in the east see the truth. I'm thinking of kidnapping of older members of the Val'Inares family to hold them captive while they transform.

Second is to explore the link and history between the Val'Holryn and the Kio. The single line of Kio not being allowed into the Order of the Phoenix has lead me to do a lot of exploration as to why this would be and the nature of the order and its oaths. That has lead me to explore what is bound with the mastiff and who is the divine patron of the Val'Holryn family. In examining who would make sense for such a chameleon like family I examined who would likely have powers drawn from across the entire human pantheon and there is only one deity that works in my mind, The Other. He absorbed the essence of all 12 current members of the PoM and had followers of his own which should include Valinor.

I then questioned why he is mad and why he has a group that is working toward preserving man. I started with why would someone kill "the gentlest member of the pantheon",i'll abbreviate this to TGM, other than them being pure evil. The answer I came up with was that TGM was the one able to create life in the PoM and in actuality posed a non-obvious threat. TGM was creating things in their own image and growing until it supplanted all others. TGM was going to become a cancer on the whole world replacing all else with its creations. While TGM was not war like its creations would fight over resources. So TGM was killed by someone who knew this fate was coming and had the will to do it. In my mind the thing that made most sense was a member of the PoM from the future. An alternative future where TGM had already taken over. We already know the Other is referred to as him which fits in with the god who would do the dirty work that needed to be done. I believe the other is really just humanity losing the next word in the sentence. It is the other Cadic.

We know the PoM already knew of how to absorb the essence of creatures from the description of the battle with the elemental lords. This Cadic came back in time to save all from the fate his timeline suffered. It is also why he wasn't just killing members of the PoM during their battles, he obviously was powerful enough to do so and likely already had absorbed the essence of some or all of his timeline's pantheon.

I believe the creatures they bind with their mastiff are akin to a time elemental or similar being. Time being important as the is how future Cadic was able to travel back and make changes without causing himself harm, other than the psychological damage of his actions.

Now to the issue with the Kio. Taking what I have laid out above it makes sense that the Kio be tied to TGM and that being the source of animosity between the two groups. I think the true Kio were the creations of TGM and that the Kio we see today are the ones who were going to supplant all of humanity, and the other races, in the alternate time line.

So those are the ideas I've come up with for world building and some of what I have in mind for the game. I'm struggling to come up with ideas on how to have these come to light in game. My group is normally combat heavy and most of them it is difficult to get to role play, so I can't have a game that is too much exposition and social encounters or it will fall apart. I am considering the game starting with the group being tasked with investigating the disappearance of several Val'Inares and having their investigation lead them to some of these facts. I see key locations at the first city and Abessios. With a chance while in Abessios to have Tzizhet followers involved as well.


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 Post subject: Re: Brainstorming for a new home game
PostPosted: Sat Dec 19, 2015 12:45 pm 
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Location: Central Alberta
archangel wrote:
So I've been away from the community for a while with life. My regular gaming group has me running a game after our current campaign wraps up. This leaves me with a few months to work on this. I would like to have a story that makes sense and fits with known facts, but once we get started I'm not worried about keeping with the official story line, the world will become theirs and I want their actions to be the driving force.


Woo home campaigns!

Quote:
First is that I'd like the campaign to go through the reveal of the Val'Inares secret to the public. Likely driven by the Khitani and their rejection of Anshar. Perhaps the sleeping emperor reveals it and then the Khitani take actions to make the humans in the east see the truth. I'm thinking of kidnapping of older members of the Val'Inares family to hold them captive while they transform.


I warn you that, outside of your table of Heroes, it will take a LOT to convince the common people of the Known Lands that the val'Inares are to be reviled. Unless you trot-out a mid-transformation val'Inares for all to see, and decry them as tools of the Serpent Gods, the val'Inares and Ansharans specifically have a VERY good reputation as the helpers of the poor and frail in Known Lands society. Look at how much religious-based inertia there is in our world for items such as Creationism/Intelligent Design/etc. vs. Evolutionary theory and you'll get an idea of how hard it is to change an established, religiously based paradigm.

As to the Sleeping Emperor revealing it, I wouldn't take that tactic. I'd have the various Ul families of Khitan and servents of the Kalindruhl revealing this information (how did they get it?). While the Sleeping Emperor has basically said "Anshar isn't a God!" and "Snakes are bad!", Sleepy hasn't gone out to denounce Anshar. The followers of the Kalindruhl seem to only consider the worship of her 'unclean'.

Your other angle will take a bit to process, so I'll get back to that one later ;)

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 Post subject: Re: Brainstorming for a new home game
PostPosted: Sun Dec 20, 2015 3:33 pm 

Joined: Fri Dec 13, 2013 5:44 pm
Posts: 142
Location: Cajun Country
Nierite wrote:
archangel wrote:
So I've been away from the community for a while with life. My regular gaming group has me running a game after our current campaign wraps up. This leaves me with a few months to work on this. I would like to have a story that makes sense and fits with known facts, but once we get started I'm not worried about keeping with the official story line, the world will become theirs and I want their actions to be the driving force.


Woo home campaigns!

Quote:
First is that I'd like the campaign to go through the reveal of the Val'Inares secret to the public. Likely driven by the Khitani and their rejection of Anshar. Perhaps the sleeping emperor reveals it and then the Khitani take actions to make the humans in the east see the truth. I'm thinking of kidnapping of older members of the Val'Inares family to hold them captive while they transform.


I warn you that, outside of your table of Heroes, it will take a LOT to convince the common people of the Known Lands that the val'Inares are to be reviled. Unless you trot-out a mid-transformation val'Inares for all to see, and decry them as tools of the Serpent Gods, the val'Inares and Ansharans specifically have a VERY good reputation as the helpers of the poor and frail in Known Lands society. Look at how much religious-based inertia there is in our world for items such as Creationism/Intelligent Design/etc. vs. Evolutionary theory and you'll get an idea of how hard it is to change an established, religiously based paradigm.

As to the Sleeping Emperor revealing it, I wouldn't take that tactic. I'd have the various Ul families of Khitan and servents of the Kalindruhl revealing this information (how did they get it?). While the Sleeping Emperor has basically said "Anshar isn't a God!" and "Snakes are bad!", Sleepy hasn't gone out to denounce Anshar. The followers of the Kalindruhl seem to only consider the worship of her 'unclean'.

Your other angle will take a bit to process, so I'll get back to that one later ;)

I wasn't going to have the sleeping emperor tell them outright. I was planning on some cryptic instructions that lead them to find out. I was thinking along the lines of "Hold fast your gaze on the Inares. Lay them bare so that the blind may see." With the Khitani seeing that as grounds for observing, and eventually kidnapping to hold in cages, the Val'Inares to see the transformation. They then try to prove to the humans in the east through various methods, first just words and eventually to bring a train of cages on wagons to show they speak the truth.


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 Post subject: Re: Brainstorming for a new home game
PostPosted: Thu Dec 24, 2015 1:52 am 
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Location: Portland OR
Hey Archangel,

If you have a bunch of players who are predominantly into the combat then turn that into a virtue. I would pick a corner of the Arcanis sandbox that feeds directly into their interest rather than a side effect of investigating a mystery. Instead of the Yig Anshar cosmic question mark what about Almeric? Home brewing half a dozen large town & small cities in Almeric would generate all the fighting they crave. They might also be tempted into role playing if the decide they like one more than the others...or better yet different players like different ones. If you had three "good" towns and three "bad" ones sometimes choosing a side might be easy. Other times they might have to debate which town deserves their help. Or maybe they roll like Fist Full of Dollars...

Options.

If you personally want to delve into my series of Arcanis you could then explore who did the double Assassination. And how Almeric might come together (under Roderick or someone else) and what external forces might be trying to keep the val'Tensen apart.

Just some food for thought

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 Post subject: Re: Brainstorming for a new home game
PostPosted: Thu Dec 24, 2015 11:32 am 
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Location: Southwestern Ohio
Along the lines of Eric's post what about Seven Samurai or Magnificent Seven as inspiration. Heck if they really crave violence go for the Wild Bunch. Just some more grist for the idea mill.

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 Post subject: Re: Brainstorming for a new home game
PostPosted: Mon Dec 28, 2015 5:39 pm 
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Location: Tampa, Florida (temp.)
archangel wrote:
[...] I would like to have a story that makes sense and fits with known facts, but once we get started I'm not worried about keeping with the official story line, the world will become theirs [...]

I believe the other is really just humanity losing the next word in the sentence. It is the other Cadic. [...]

I've also, independently wondered if the Other was one of the Gods of Men and is so called because it's short for "other Illiir" or "other Larissa" or (as you suggest) "other Cadic". By my reasoning, the name was shortened to just "Other" since misunderstanding of "other Illiir" (for example) could lead to misunderstanding that the surviving, primary Illiir is bad, whereas it's actually just the Other Illiir who should be feared and stopped. I've also wondered if time-travel could be involved, though the rest of your theory I had not previously pondered. That's an interesting and creative idea. Kudos for coming up for a nice explanation for things.

Good luck with your home campaign!

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 Post subject: Re: Brainstorming for a new home game
PostPosted: Mon Jan 04, 2016 8:09 pm 

Joined: Fri Dec 13, 2013 5:44 pm
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Location: Cajun Country
Thanks for the suggestions guys. I'm glad I could get the gears going for some of you. I like your suggestion Eric. I think I'll start with them working in Almeric, hired by one of the princes or princesses, and begin to integrate the other ideas to see if they bite or just want to hack things apart.

David I tossed out Larissa because they explicitly call The Other a "him" in the old Codex Arcanis, for both the human and elorii stories. Though I do think that seeing who the other was may have been a driving force into Larissa's escapism, either from her interaction with The Other or is what prompted her to peer too far into the future and see what her husband did before going back in time.


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