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A World on Fire: Interest Thread

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  • A World on Fire: Interest Thread

    Preamble:

    I don't intend for this game to kick off for several weeks, I have other commitments both in games and RL that come first. However, things are starting to normalize again after getting on the team, so I think I have the time to get one started if it looks like there's sufficient interest.

    Setting:

    Real World, modern day....kinda....with magic. It's not unlimited, there are restrictions, and there are some other things going on, but within some semblance of reason magic is here.



    Introduction:

    "Message for Sir Drake" the courier says, to the man standing in the doorway of the "Office of the Royal Colonial Auditor". The man takes it and walks inside, tearing open the envelope:

    UPDATE URGENT

    6 Members have been killed in as many months. What was originally thought to be accidents have been confirmed with the last death to be ambushes or orchestrated accidents. Subjects have targeted senior members of the Council with apparent intent to gain knowledge of the location of the Soul Catcher. It is possible that the Soul Catcher's location has been compromised.......

    The letter goes on, but Sir Drake leaves it for a later time. The Soulcatcher, and its location, were vital pieces of information that different covens of dark mages had been hunting for over 200 years. The problem was that the location he had found to finally rest the Orb was not easily secured once found. Well, not easily secured against the mundane. It was a place potent in magic, a nexus if you will, and that was the primary reason for it's being chosen, for only a place of sufficient power could hold the wardings needed to ensure She who was trapped within could not be released.

    Sir Drake turns to a man standing deep in the shadows of the room, with a visible pallor and hair that still held its golden sheen. "Lord Herbert, I don't believe there are enough Council members to strengthen the wardings or move the Soul Catcher. Unfortunately, it's time we called upon some of our more 'eclectic' members.

    Lord Herbert shakes his head in disgust, then heads to leave to make the calls.

    "Oh, and as much as our less regal associates annoy you, it does get better. We're going to need to call up the Swordborn, and train them."

    Lord Herbert flashes Sir Drake a glimpse of his eye teeth as his pallor goes slightly more towards pink.

    "No, no, you don't have to train them, we'll have the others train them one on one. But with our numbers as few as they were at the end of the mage wars, we can't in good conscience let them fall farther. The Swordborn may be mere mortals, but what they're heirs to are not."

    "What they stand to inherit should stay in the vault....and they should stay mere mortals as you say"

    "Desperate times, my oldest friend, desperate times. And I feel that they will be more desperate before it's over. The spirits seem to know something's gathering, but they can't tell me what yet."

    Lord Herbert checks his schedule. Lots of contacts to make, and a couple that will involve flights as they don't have phones. But he should be able to fit his evening tea with her Majesty in.....barely. The only perk of his former station, before he adopted the moniker of Lord Herbert.....

    Characters:

    Players will play as minor members of the "Council of Mages", or associates thereof. Your character doesn't necessarily have to be a powerful mage in their own right, they could have other talents in addition to some minor magical abilities.

    Players will also create a secondary 'mere mortal' character which will be 'Swordborn'. The swordborn are those who are blood heirs to significant weapons. Excalibur is one of those......and the one that you can't create an 'heir' to. These weapons have limited but powerful magical properties, and in addition can buff an heir's abilities (they retain memory of their former masters skills).

    Ok........let's see if there's any interest......
    Tacitos, Satrap of Kyrene

  • #2
    I see, a world basically like our own, or perhaps like the 1890s(?), but with "magic" instead of technology driving it forward. It is a concept that is known to me, but that geek Harry Turtledove ruined it for me in one of his interminable series.

    It would be worthwhile to lay the ground rules on how things work first, to have a clear idea of what can and can't be done.

    In a lot of ways, this could be the more advanced world, depending on what works and what does not. In a world where Alchemy and Divination work, the potential for wealth and instant communications are staggering. You also would have no need of a globe-spanning infrastructure to support the fragile web of a Technocracy, an individual or a small group of people could make things happen in a big way.

    A society that allowed any citizens that are capable of it to practice spell-magic would have a lot of very empowered citizens running around. A nation that did not would come off second-best in a confrontation with such a place, especially if it came down to a war of attrition.

    Comment


    • #3
      In a lot of ways the world has moved 'forward' away from the extremely prevalent magic of the medieval period. The last big 'mage war' was sort of concurrent with the Thirty Years War. There were magical conflicts running in the background of most other conflicts.......a big reason for Truman nuking Nagasaki was to prevent a coven there from pulling off an unspecified magical feat.

      Overall, magic is very much in the background and if you told someone you were a mage they'd probably laugh in your face....it being the 80's and all. Yep 1980s. But several world leaders know about it, and have worked to influence things in the magical 'realm' one way or another. Talents are just so rare in such a huge populace that there's a general feeling that fear would drive a campaign to destroy those with such talents rather than revere them.

      Overall, while your primary character would know all of these things and be quite adept, your secondary character would be very mundane and be 'discovering their power' so to speak. That power being tied up in their inheriting an article of power rather than naturally having abilities.
      Tacitos, Satrap of Kyrene

      Comment


      • #4
        Keep me in the loop, please.

        Pruitt
        Pruitt, you are truly an expert! Kelt06

        Have you been struck by the jawbone of an ASS lately?

        by Khepesh "This is the logic of Pruitt"

        Comment


        • #5
          At the moment I figure I'd need 4 players to get this started, so we'll see if enough show up for it to work.
          Tacitos, Satrap of Kyrene

          Comment


          • #6
            To expound a bit, while the rest of the world might be in the 'later' stages of the Cold War, the magical realm has been in its own cold war......which has pretty much been going since the 30 years war.

            Some political leaders over time, especially some of Europe's monarchs who are more 'familiar' with the arcane than modern politicians, have supported their side with materiel. Plus there's the whole long-term shadowy organizations thing, which tends to develop its own fortunes. So there is not generally a lack of funding or supplies......though some might be warehoused goods from previous eras.....or other goods which are rather too big for warehouses and just carefully concealed since their decommissioning.....

            Yes I'm hinting at some oddities and fun things that will be showing up, including very early on.

            As for the roleplay, you're not necessarily tied to the other players as a solid group, though you'll probably find the challenges easier (or possible) as a group. There will be a mix of roleplay and some combat-casting elements, though the latter will be simplified to make it easier to play and resolve.
            Tacitos, Satrap of Kyrene

            Comment


            • #7
              me, too.
              "We have no white flag."

              Comment


              • #8
                Sir Drake gets out of his car at Heathrow. As he walks to the hangar, he feels a stirring. Tapping a little of his power, he calls the spirit to appear. "What do you have need of, I'm very busy" he nearly growls.

                Before him stands a man, wearing the uniform of a London Bobby from the 19th Century. "Strange people have been near your plane. If you have another way to leave, I suggest you take it."

                Sir Drake nods to the ghost, before walking back to his car and driving North. The next morning, the 306ft private yacht Cook set sail from its long-concealed location......what would ordinarily require a crew of nearly two hundred needs just thirty or so, such is the extent of her modernization.
                Tacitos, Satrap of Kyrene

                Comment


                • #9
                  I'm not sure I understand this whole thing as well as I should, but I want in.

                  And I want my "secondary" character to be one that is just discovering the spark of something that would lead to him becoming a Paladin.
                  And, I want him to be a Gurkha.

                  Still not sure who I want the "primary" to be. Maybe Otto von Bismarck is still creeping around, as a Litch.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    In general, your primary character can be a Mage of one of the main schools (Air, Earth, Water, Fire, Spirit (Very rare...Sir Drake is a Necromancer)), a Vyrkin (Werewolf....or Werebear, the former tend to have a defined pack structure, the latter are generally loners), a Vayash (Vampire.....though they tend to stay out of mortal affairs and really don't like mundanes), or a less potent magic user (Druid, Witch, etc).

                    Your secondary character is going to start off as a mundane.....their background is up to you, but they won't know what they are heir to until the start of the adventure. In fact, the first adventure is assembling them. Secondary Characters are colloquially known as "Swordborn"....heirs to an artifact of great power.

                    For instance, one could be heir to Julius Caesar's Sword, or the Epirus Bow, etc......So yes, you can have a Ghurka as your secondary character.....I might do some research into what legendary artifact he could be heir to......all of the artifacts are aboard the 'Yacht'.......
                    Tacitos, Satrap of Kyrene

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      This appears to have some things in common with Mercedes Lackey's stories. I will check at a couple of used book stores on Monday to see if any books are there.

                      I have never done these type of characters before so I want to do some reading first.

                      Pruitt
                      Pruitt, you are truly an expert! Kelt06

                      Have you been struck by the jawbone of an ASS lately?

                      by Khepesh "This is the logic of Pruitt"

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        If there's enough interest we will get into serious character creation. Vice just the teasers and such I've posted so far.

                        Basic Stats will of course be:

                        Strength
                        Dexterity
                        Intelligence
                        Wisdom
                        Charisma

                        Though they'll function a bit differently depending on what type of character you have, and what you're doing. For instance Strength, as it regards to magic use, is the indicator of the depth of your 'reserves'.....IE how often and how much you can draw on your magic daily without suffering more than exhaustion (overuse of magic can actually kill you). Dexterity is irrelevant to magic use if you intend to purely use magic.....just as Intellect is practically irrelevant to a pure fighting type (Wisdom is the stat that counts for 'experience'....Intellect is more directly oriented towards 'book knowledge').

                        Charisma is what it is......pretty much useless in a fight, but then there are alternatives to fighting.....

                        As for equipment, depending on the type of your character, things open up there as well. Remember it is the 1980s....though you do have to move through countries where running around with an M60 on your shoulder might be considered 'conspicuous' or 'illegal'. Mages tend to be very 'light', especially the experienced ones. Obviously Swordborn don't have to only use their arcane inheritance if they have other weapons and/or skills. Vayash will use weapons, but they're loath to carry much in the way of projectile weapons.....the odd pistol being the only thing they consider to be dignified enough for them. Vyrkin might be able to shift, but that doesn't mean that they won't go loaded for bear and shift into a bear when they're unloaded.
                        Last edited by TacCovert4; 09 May 16, 03:05.
                        Tacitos, Satrap of Kyrene

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I want a Druid as my "Mage", Brother Fraser. His mundane is a Scot from Glasgow, MacAusland. MacAusland grew up running the streets of Glasgow and is streetsmart, a good brawler and more clever than smart.

                          The talisman MacAusland is searching for is Merlin's Staff. I will fill in the rest later.

                          Pruitt
                          Pruitt, you are truly an expert! Kelt06

                          Have you been struck by the jawbone of an ASS lately?

                          by Khepesh "This is the logic of Pruitt"

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Pruitt View Post
                            I want a Druid as my "Mage", Brother Fraser. His mundane is a Scot from Glasgow, MacAusland. MacAusland grew up running the streets of Glasgow and is streetsmart, a good brawler and more clever than smart.

                            The talisman MacAusland is searching for is Merlin's Staff. I will fill in the rest later.

                            Pruitt
                            Looks good overall. A couple of notes, the Staff will already be in the vault aboard the Cook. We'll just have to work out basic stats/skills for the mundane and stats/spells for the Druid (they tend to be generalists, though less singularly powerful than a mage that focuses on a particular elemental discipline). We'll also have to work out exactly what the staff does. For Merlin's staff, I'd say something like it's a nexus of power that gives your mundane the ability to cast certain spells.......depending on his mastery of it, it could be very high complexity or power spells.....
                            Tacitos, Satrap of Kyrene

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by TacCovert4 View Post
                              ...
                              For instance, one could be heir to Julius Caesar's Sword, or the Epirus Bow, etc......So yes, you can have a Ghurka as your secondary character.....I might do some research into what legendary artifact he could be heir to......all of the artifacts are aboard the 'Yacht'.......
                              Gurkha tend to be Hindu, so that ought to broaden the possibilities.

                              They were mainly stationed in Hong Kong at that time, but I will look into the Falklands and Timor to see what might have been going on with them.

                              A Mage... so Hong Kong gives access to both Chinese and British mysticism, still not sure what sort of thing I should create. Sure as hell won't be a Gandalf re-tread.
                              I should look into what qualified as a Mage in Chinese mythos, and if the gift went to a minority/woman in China, she would have to flee to get a fair shot.
                              I was there for a short visit in 1985, but I need to do some research of my own to make this workable. I might have a better idea next week.

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