(Posted 10:48 PM PST, 2012/11/06)
I think I may divert a little from what I had originally planned a little, but we’ll see.
I remember being in a seminar back when GURPS had just come out and Steve Jackson was talking about what the most truly dangerous enemy PCs could face were other humanoids. I’ve remembered that for a long time, as I think it’s probably pretty accurate.
In this setting, conflict is going to revolve around the knightly orders, at least at first. I can also see the Primals as a potential enemy. The noble houses could also be a source of conflict, but they will be tied to the orders, so I’m not sure how much so. That’s something I’ll be working out as I go. However, I’m also hoping to include the ancient ideas of hospitality in order to get more political action going before the players leap into combat. Being forced to greet your enemy rather than just attacking him should change the dynamics in a way that should encourage more role play.
I plan on having raiders/pirates. This is part of an idea from an older campaign that I’m borrowing from liberally from for this campaign in general (more on that in a bit). In that older campaign, I had a race something like elves and something like the githyanki/githzerai; a split race that is half good, half evil. The good ones are allies to humanity, the evil ones are raiders and pirates. I liked the idea, and I hope to get to use them more.
I expect to include something akin to D&D aberrations as alien invaders from beyond known space. Those may be the creatures behind the Arcanists, or they may be a separate group. They are a pretty vague idea right now, so I may edit them out, or I may simply include them as an option for other DMs should I choose to try to publish. I’m hesitant to include evil outsiders in this campaign, as they’ve been the core enemy of my current campaign for three years now, and I’m ready to move on to different super-evils.
I’d like to include an undead group, but I’m not sure what form that will take. I had undead in that older campaign as well, but I didn’t like that group’s origin or behavior. That group was seeking immortality and found it, sort of… That process ended up also causing ripples throughout the campaign world that aren’t appropriate for this new setting. Undead may be another idea that ends up cut, but I’m hoping not. It may just be some reconsideration of their origins, methodology and physiology.
I’m not enthusiastic about including either giants or dragons, and if I do, I think they will be very different from the usual. Space dragons could be interesting. 🙂 I’m also thinking about a tinkering race that plays both sides against the middle, like a race of mechanical genius Ferengi, but that’s another pretty nebulous concept at the moment that needs a lot of tightening up.
As an aside, my high school friend, Eric, pointed me to this article today: The Big Idea: Ryk E. Spoor, in which a gamer discusses how he built his world for a game and is using it for novels. I saw myself doing a lot of what he mentions in regards to worldbuilding: re-using and reworking old campaigns. The names for my noble houses in this new campaign will be sourced from my old high school characters, which I used in a campaign when D&D 3.0 when that edition first came out. The ideas of the knightly orders and the raiders are from a brief campaign I ran in 2003 for a friend who had returned to town, and were transformed from Games Workshop ideas. The names of worlds will be sourced from a campaign I was working on in the 1990’s. As I said in a PM to Eric today, “No sense throwing out good material. :-)”
Not sure what I’ll write about tomorrow. Maybe the cosmography, maybe not.