Anyone interested in a pre-Industrial fantasy STGOD?

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Anyone interested in a pre-Industrial fantasy STGOD?

Postby The Romulan Republic » 2015-12-08 03:27am

We did have at least one fantasy STGOD before, but not for a long while, so I'm going to throw this concept out for all the fantasy lovers here.

The concept is a pre-industrial (meaning no technology invented after 1800) faction-based fantasy game. You are not in any way obligated to limit yourself to classic Tolkienesque fantasy, though you're welcome to if that's your preference. Anything from the stone age through the Renaissance at least is quite welcome. Drawing inspiration from any part of the world, or making something completely new up, is welcome as well. I want to be fairly flexible and open-ended in what I permit, relying on the creativity and judgement of the individual participants to shape the game.

Because I have zero map making skills for this kind of thing, I'm going to suggest that we follow the practice of simply using a map of the real world, with each person posting what territory they claim, unless someone else wants to try their hand at cooking up something more elaborate. Beyond that, though, this will be an alternate reality, which need not bear any resemblance at all to our world.

My preference is to keep the rules fairly simple. I'll elaborate on that once I put up a proper OOC thread.

If their's sufficient interest (say, at least five people), I'll post an OOC thread and a thread for factions/Orders of Battle.

I'm willing to run this myself, but if anyone else wants to co-host, let me know. lt's always good to have a backup.

So, anyone interested?

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Re: Anyone interested in a pre-Industrial fantasy STGOD?

Postby Jub » 2015-12-08 06:02am

I'd be interested, but I've said that before and not been able to keep up. So, count me in, but maybe not as one of the number needed to start up the game.

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Re: Anyone interested in a pre-Industrial fantasy STGOD?

Postby madd0ct0r » 2015-12-08 07:35am

Jub wrote:I'd be interested, but I've said that before and not been able to keep up. So, count me in, but maybe not as one of the number needed to start up the game.


same.
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Re: Anyone interested in a pre-Industrial fantasy STGOD?

Postby Eternal_Freedom » 2015-12-08 07:35am

I would probably be interested, though when you "fantasy" what elements are included? Dragons, wizards, Great Old Ones etc?
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Re: Anyone interested in a pre-Industrial fantasy STGOD?

Postby Simon_Jester » 2015-12-08 01:54pm

Interested.

I can usually keep up post rate adequately as long as I have people to bounce ideas off of. The problem is... I'm not sure what I'd want to play. Will have to think about that.

Also, a fantasy world may prove problematic, due to transportation issues. Perhaps we should remain open to using a smaller landmass.
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Re: Anyone interested in a pre-Industrial fantasy STGOD?

Postby madd0ct0r » 2015-12-08 03:25pm

Base it off the Carpet People and confine it to a single room?
Base it off the Long Earth and have each us of us have our own planet with spell travel moving between them, not spatially?
Base it off the Grand Bazar and have all of us interacting via a complex of planar gates that form a trade hub?
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Re: Anyone interested in a pre-Industrial fantasy STGOD?

Postby The Romulan Republic » 2015-12-08 03:51pm

madd0ct0r wrote:
Jub wrote:I'd be interested, but I've said that before and not been able to keep up. So, count me in, but maybe not as one of the number needed to start up the game.


same.


Alright, I'll keep that in mind.

Eternal_Freedom wrote:I would probably be interested, though when you "fantasy" what elements are included? Dragons, wizards, Great Old Ones etc?


Any of those are fine. Details of rules for the game will be worked out in due course, once an OOC thread goes up (though I'm already working on a rough draft). But thus far, the only limit on the setting that I've come up with, as explained in the OP, is that tech. is pre-1800s. Ie industrialization/steam/electricity are out, but primitive gunpowder weaponry and big ocean-going sailing ships are fine. Hot air balloons would squeak through too, if you want aircraft.

Or you can go to the other end and play a primitive stone age tribe. Or anything in between.

Likewise with magic, you can use limited magic or very powerful magic, but of course, a single extremely powerful unit would cost a lot. A dragon might cost as much as a hundred ordinary soldiers, to give a basic example.

Simon_Jester wrote:Interested.

I can usually keep up post rate adequately as long as I have people to bounce ideas off of. The problem is... I'm not sure what I'd want to play. Will have to think about that.

Also, a fantasy world may prove problematic, due to transportation issues. Perhaps we should remain open to using a smaller landmass.


Its a valid concern. However, I would point out that magic could potentially mitigate transportation difficulties.

However, I will consider limiting the scope to a single continent. Since I was going to base the map off the real world, I guess I'd pick one continent. I'm personally inclined to use North America, but I'm willing to take suggestions.

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Re: Anyone interested in a pre-Industrial fantasy STGOD?

Postby Eternal_Freedom » 2015-12-08 04:02pm

Ok I'm definitely interested now, I have have a rough idea of what kind of nation I'd like to play.
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Re: Anyone interested in a pre-Industrial fantasy STGOD?

Postby The Romulan Republic » 2015-12-08 04:38pm

Okay, we need just one or two more people and I'll put up an OOC thread.

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Re: Anyone interested in a pre-Industrial fantasy STGOD?

Postby Simon_Jester » 2015-12-08 10:49pm

Magic only mitigates global distances in terms of economics and logistics if you live in a world where magic functions at the level of Victorian or 20th century technology. Otherwise, you may have a handful of archmages that know how to teleport, dragons that can cross a continent by air in a week, and seers who keep in touch with a network of crystal balls...

...But when all is said and done, you don't have an interlinked global economy, the means to transport goods (or armies) over intercontinental distances simply do not exist.

So assuming we're not just saying "pre-industrial fantasy" for the sake of avoiding technological trappings and just recreating the entire modern world with magitech, distance is a factor.

Personally my brain keeps appealing to me with the phrase "With pike and shot against the Powers of Chaos..." I'm trying to imagine, given ubiquitous magic, how do you maintain a society that is recognizable, what has to be in place to allow magic to be integrated rather than dominant, what countermeasures would such a civilization need to have in order to avoid being converted into a magocracy or rule by monsters?
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Re: Anyone interested in a pre-Industrial fantasy STGOD?

Postby Shinn Langley Soryu » 2015-12-08 10:55pm

The last time I did a pre-industrial fantasy STGOD, my faction wound up being "Great Britain as filtered through a VERY Japanese lens," as you can see in this order of battle. I'd certainly be down for another go at the whole fantasy thing.
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Re: Anyone interested in a pre-Industrial fantasy STGOD?

Postby The Romulan Republic » 2015-12-08 11:28pm

Simon_Jester wrote:Magic only mitigates global distances in terms of economics and logistics if you live in a world where magic functions at the level of Victorian or 20th century technology. Otherwise, you may have a handful of archmages that know how to teleport, dragons that can cross a continent by air in a week, and seers who keep in touch with a network of crystal balls...

...But when all is said and done, you don't have an interlinked global economy, the means to transport goods (or armies) over intercontinental distances simply do not exist.


Fair enough, by and large, I suppose.

So assuming we're not just saying "pre-industrial fantasy" for the sake of avoiding technological trappings and just recreating the entire modern world with magitech, distance is a factor.


Well obviously a world with magic in place of technology would likely be very different from our own (you get into this a bit yourself at the bottom of this post). But I see your point, I think.

Personally my brain keeps appealing to me with the phrase "With pike and shot against the Powers of Chaos..." I'm trying to imagine, given ubiquitous magic, how do you maintain a society that is recognizable, what has to be in place to allow magic to be integrated rather than dominant, what countermeasures would such a civilization need to have in order to avoid being converted into a magocracy or rule by monsters?


All interesting questions. I'd be interested to see what answers individual players come up with for those questions when designing their factions, but obviously we need some ground rules. I'm working on that at the moment. Powerful mages and such will likely cost a lot more than run of the mill units, and I might assign a point value to particularly large scale magical effects (like mass teleporting an army) as well. Exact numbers is something we can get into in the OOC thread, which given the level of interest we have, should go up some time in the next two days.

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Re: Anyone interested in a pre-Industrial fantasy STGOD?

Postby Simon_Jester » 2015-12-09 12:16am

I will say that if we're going for North America... I'm thinking of staking out a respectable fraction of the Ohio River valley and a bit of a stretch north to get some coastline on the Great Lakes. That might be interesting.
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Re: Anyone interested in a pre-Industrial fantasy STGOD?

Postby Jub » 2015-12-09 12:27am

I second the idea of limiting the game's area to North America, or a similarly compact region. We can always say that the things in the ocean more than a few miles from the coast make travel between continents nearly impossible and that connected areas like South America, or Africa/Asia are populated by 'Really Bad Things".

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Re: Anyone interested in a pre-Industrial fantasy STGOD?

Postby The Romulan Republic » 2015-12-09 01:14am

Hmm... you gave me the idea of making, say, South America (if we use North America) be populated by some vast necromantic empire or something, so we can have an over all big bad in the background. How would people feel about that?

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Re: Anyone interested in a pre-Industrial fantasy STGOD?

Postby Imperial528 » 2015-12-09 01:31am

I would be interested. Though it depends on how open the game is to more or less premade entities, or barring that, if I can think of one for the game.

As for a "big bad" I'm undecided at the moment, I guess I'd need to see how the game starts to develop before I could really offer an opinion there.

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Re: Anyone interested in a pre-Industrial fantasy STGOD?

Postby The Romulan Republic » 2015-12-09 01:36am

By pre-made entities, do you mean stuff borrowed from existing series? Like playing as a faction based on, say, Gondor from LotR or something like that?

As I recall, we've had people draw inspiration and ideas from existing works in previous STGODs, so I see no reason not to allow it now unless its something really out their. Let's say generally permitted, pending approval of your OOB like any other faction. When I post the OOC thread, I'll make sure to include a statement to that effect.

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Re: Anyone interested in a pre-Industrial fantasy STGOD?

Postby Simon_Jester » 2015-12-09 01:38am

I do not agree with either the "create a villain for the game" idea or the "let's make it suicide to sail out of sight of land" idea.

1) STGODs tend to work better as multipolar worlds. A designated "bad guy" tends to turn everything into a semi-scripted, stilted affair. My guys would make perfectly credible local villains, for instance, against certain kinds of players- as I envision them, they are actively hostile to certain types of magic and may well be prejudiced against demihuman or more exotic species. But they're people with motives and stuff, not just a big NPC pinata for everyone to beat on.

Big hostile pinatas aren't very interesting, because either they're run by a moderator in which case someone has to be THE bad guy for the setting which can be unpleasant, or they're like a headless chicken with no actual ability to respond effectually to player actions.

2) I see no reason to make it hard to travel across the world. We're playing pre-industrial societies, there is simply no need to fill in the rest of the map any more than a game set in, oh, Southeast Asia circa 1700 needs to go into detail about what Europe looks like. Sure, a fair amount of what's going on involves European activity, but it doesn't really matter whether France is between Spain and the Netherlands or vice versa in geographic terms.

So why bother imposing rules that limit what you're allowed to do? What purpose does it serve, except to prevent someone from, say, playing an awesome city-state with mercantile connections to exotic lands across the globe?

Why artificially limit the set of cool stories that can be told, just because we choose to park our own countries in one part of the world?

Now, there may well be assorted pieces of Bad News (and Good News) elsewhere in the world. But I see no reason to assume or decide that we need the whole world to be Bad News except the part we're standing on, to somehow deter people from, uh... whatever they might do that is somehow bad if it's possible for players to engage meaningfully with distant foreign PC or NPC entities.

We'd just have to bear in mind that transportation is slow and hazardous, that's all.
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Re: Anyone interested in a pre-Industrial fantasy STGOD?

Postby Imperial528 » 2015-12-09 01:48am

The Romulan Republic wrote:By pre-made entities, do you mean stuff borrowed from existing series? Like playing as a faction based on, say, Gondor from LotR or something like that?

As I recall, we've had people draw inspiration and ideas from existing works in previous STGODs, so I see no reason not to allow it now unless its something really out their. Let's say generally permitted, pending approval of your OOB like any other faction. When I post the OOC thread, I'll make sure to include a statement to that effect.


More use something I had previously made for a previous game or just as an idea. By the by, what does OOB stand for again? Or STGOD, for that matter. I can guess that STGOD=RPG and that OOB is probably a nation sheet but I am curious as to know the exact meanings and possible origins.

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Re: Anyone interested in a pre-Industrial fantasy STGOD?

Postby The Romulan Republic » 2015-12-09 01:51am

OOB, I believe, is short for Order of Battle. Ie your faction, its troops, etc.

I have some idea of what STGOD means, but no clue where it originated from. I wasn't here in the early days of the board (I joined, I believe, in 2008).

Edit: And yeah, using something from a previous game is fine as long as it fits the parameters of the setting.

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Re: Anyone interested in a pre-Industrial fantasy STGOD?

Postby Jub » 2015-12-09 01:53am

Imperial528 wrote:
The Romulan Republic wrote:By pre-made entities, do you mean stuff borrowed from existing series? Like playing as a faction based on, say, Gondor from LotR or something like that?

As I recall, we've had people draw inspiration and ideas from existing works in previous STGODs, so I see no reason not to allow it now unless its something really out their. Let's say generally permitted, pending approval of your OOB like any other faction. When I post the OOC thread, I'll make sure to include a statement to that effect.


More use something I had previously made for a previous game or just as an idea. By the by, what does OOB stand for again? Or STGOD, for that matter. I can guess that STGOD=RPG and that OOB is probably a nation sheet but I am curious as to know the exact meanings and possible origins.


OOB = Order of Battle and STGOD = Strange, the good old days. I'm not 100% sure where STGOD came from though.

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Re: Anyone interested in a pre-Industrial fantasy STGOD?

Postby Simon_Jester » 2015-12-09 02:03am

May I suggest that we *not* try to come up with a complicated system of what kind of military forces a nation has available, and what to pay for them, in case anyone was silly enough to want to try that? ;)

SDNW4 was one of the more successful STGODs of the past several years here, and I liked its "points are points are points" approach. That was about as much complexity as I think a successful game can or should support.
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Re: Anyone interested in a pre-Industrial fantasy STGOD?

Postby The Romulan Republic » 2015-12-09 02:04am

Simon_Jester, regarding your previous comments:

To the first point, I understand your concerns. Its not a definite idea, merely a suggestion, and if their is a consensus against it I probably won't try it. One of the main appeals of such a game, after all, is the interaction between player factions.

However, I'd like to hear what, if anything, others have to say first.

To the second point, that seems a reasonable point. On the other hand, I do worry that allowing interactions with factions off the map will result in people being tempted to Godmode a bit. I suppose it relies on a certain amount of restraint and good taste from participants, but that is always true.

Edited for accuracy. Also, I might as well address your last post here too.

Simon_Jester wrote:May I suggest that we *not* try to come up with a complicated system of what kind of military forces a nation has available, and what to pay for them, in case anyone was silly enough to want to try that? ;)

SDNW4 was one of the more successful STGODs of the past several years here, and I liked its "points are points are points" approach. That was about as much complexity as I think a successful game can or should support.


Agreed, actually.

My intent, as I stated from the start, is to keep this fairly flexible and the rules fairly simple.

How simple is something I'm still working out. Once the OOC thread goes up, I'll post my thoughts on the subject for discussion.

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Re: Anyone interested in a pre-Industrial fantasy STGOD?

Postby Jub » 2015-12-09 02:20am

I agree with the points are points idea. We can all just agree that, in their element, 10 points of mages are worth a 10 point dragon or a pair of 5 point steam tanks. It keeps the tedium of constant bookkeeping down while still putting some limits on the game to keep things balanced.

As for a strictly bounded area to play in, I like the idea of everybody being stuck in a small place. It creates connections between nations that are rubbing elbows with one another. If we can do this without limiting trade with other NPC nations outside of the play area I'd be all for it.

To the second point, that seems a reasonable point. On the other hand, I do worry that allowing interactions with factions off the map will result in people being tempted to Godmode a bit. I suppose it relies on a certain amount of restraint and good taste from participants, but that is always true.


Just make it so x amount of outside power always costs at least x amount of points to gain. This could be sending away trade, calling in a favor, sending forces to demand tribute from a subject, but in game terms it always nets an equal number of points coming back. If we want a little more complexity we could have investments into the outside world generate interest, so if you invest x points and wait y time you get xz points back.

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Re: Anyone interested in a pre-Industrial fantasy STGOD?

Postby The Romulan Republic » 2015-12-09 02:29am

Agreed regarding the points are points thing.

Regarding the trade and map issues, I'll keep your suggestions in mind.

Also, my apologies, but a note regarding tech. limitations- while some quick research has reminded me that yes, steam power was in use in the time period this game covers, steam tanks would probably be pushing it. I might allow them, but I would prefer it if they are treated as cutting-edge tech. in very limited numbers.

And now I really must get to work on a proper OOC/rules thread.


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