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Old 07-29-2018, 03:34 PM   #471
Anaraxes
 
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Could people learn the language fast enough to keep critical infrastructure running?
Do the operators forget their skills, or just their language? "Keep this dial in the middle" and "flip that switch to make that light come on" don't need to be translated to be valid. I think the only actual words on the dashboard of my car are "cruise" and "brake", and the meaning of the second one will be obvious as soon as I pull the handle that I know is the parking brake. I might forget the names of the glyphs on the tach and speedometer, but if I remember how to count and add, they'll be pretty obvious as well. (Per the original scenario, even this is worse than the actual situation -- those numbers are all perfectly usable to me in my own private language. I just make different sounds to verbalize them.)

Given that it takes two months (or more) to get back to working proficiency, they won't be consulting manuals early enough to handle non-routine problems. But they might well be able to keep things going, or safely shut down things like hydro power that could damage itself. The inability to coordinate teams is going to be an efficiency problem, but not an absolute block for all those teams that have been working together for months or years. (Plus, you get the bonus of no longer having to file TPS reports or go to a meeting about the cover changes for them.)

A two-month blackout is certainly going to have an effect, but it's also not a civilization-ending catastrophe of the sort we usually get in post-apoc fiction. The bad guys can't organize their crime family or dictatorial warlord state any better than the police can hunt them down. If you have a sufficiently jaundiced view of human nature, perhaps you'll think civilization immediately collapses into people strangling each other to get that last can of beans. But the farmers might just keep growing beans, getting what they need from the coop by pointing at the bags and holding up fingers or making tally marks on paper.

Also, most people are going to realize that the disaster is temporary.
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Old 07-31-2018, 05:11 PM   #472
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I have a sufficiently jaundiced view of human nature to be sure, but not to the degree that I think we will all start killing each other over beans-though it is frightful what humans will do when they are scared enough. However we are social creatures and being struck with what is something like universal autism is going to cause a lot of trouble.
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Old 08-25-2018, 10:08 AM   #473
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This came to me in a dream last night. The characters are cops infilterating an underground Asian fight club. Add plenty of interest about the Yakussa and/or the Triads indulging in fight-fixing or using coerced fighters. And of course everybody is Kung-fu fighting. And yes that reference was inevitable.
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Old 08-25-2018, 10:21 AM   #474
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an underground Asian fight club... And of course everybody is Kung-fu fighting. And yes that reference was inevitable.
The first rule of referencing pop culture is not to reference pop culture.
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Old 08-26-2018, 02:31 AM   #475
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This came to me in a dream last night. The characters are cops invading an underground Asian fight club. Add plenty of interest about the Yakussa and/or the Triads indulging in fight-fixing or using coerced fighters. And of course everybody is Kung-fu fighting. And yes that reference was inevitable.
That type of adventure sounds perfect for a G:Martial Arts, Martial Hero, Feng Shui, or Street Fighter campaign. Heck, it's almost a perfect fit for Feng Shui.
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Old 10-15-2018, 10:45 PM   #476
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Just found an old campaign prospectus I never actually had a chance to use, and thought I'd toss up a few for anyone who might be inspired by them:

Zeerust
Genre: Comedy/Science Fiction
Setting: The distant future: 200X
Fidelity: Deliberately ridiculous, except where realism is funnier
Combat Frequency: Moderate
Power Level: 150 points, some cinematic abilities available
Description:
When men were men, women were women, and robots were robots. Teach green-skinned babes about love, give alien monsters a taste of raygun, and fight the spread of Space Communism.
Lucky 13
Genre: Military/Horror
Setting: Germany, Spring, 1945
Fidelity: Brutal
Combat Frequency: High
Power Level: 150 points
Description:
Following Hitler's decree that nothing of value would be left on Reich territory for the Allies to capture, occultists of the Ahnenerbe and the Thule Society unleash Hell... literally. Just as they prepare the final assault into the German heartland, the Allies are faced with a mass of German soldiers and civilians, not attacking, but fleeing. PCs will be members of the 13th Infantry Regiment and stragglers, civilians, even former enemies picked up in the chaos, fighting against demons for survival and the fate of the world.
All the Pharaoh's Men
Genre: Historical Fantasy/Political Intrigue
Setting: 18th Dynasty Egypt
Fidelity: High with some magic
Combat Frequency: Low
Power Level: 200 points
Description:
Threats to Hatshepsut abound, both within and without the Kingdom of Egypt. Her coregent nephew presses for solitary rule. The high officials maneuver for political gain. The Hittite and Assyrian Empires press on the frontier. The PCs will be political operators within the Empire.
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This year I'm taking part in a classic American Christmas tradition. I'm rowing across the Delaware and taking the Hessian troops quartered in Trenton by surprise.
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Old 10-22-2018, 07:50 PM   #477
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The characters are in the upper management of a station of Really Boring Name Import/Export operating in the Indian Ocean in the 1930's-1940's. There is only one catch. Really Boring Name Inc is a facade. All of you have been chosen by MI6. Your job is to conduct various and sundry secret doings, which may mean negotiating with native dignitaries, keeping an eye on the Japanese and/or Italians, engaging in covert warfare, whatever you like to come up with.
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Old 11-12-2018, 08:10 PM   #478
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The PCs are a forward armored car troop looking for a passage across the Rhine in 1945.

While they probe around they find a civilian delegation from a local town. They are sick and tired of war. If the Allies will hurry the locals will promise an open city, including an intact bridge on their own authority. The catch is, besides Wehrmacht units along the river, SS death squads are about, coming to execute anyone who seems like they might be surrendering.

The municipal government will want to negotiate for a number of things, including billeting as few troops as possible on private homes and as many as possible on government buildings and the local hotel. However they have little to bargain with as if the SS arrives they will execute the town VIPs and if the surrender is not put through first, the town will likely get blown up.

P.S. If the town has a bridge almost certainly it has a garrison. Did they explain how they are going to persuade it to move?

Looking back I suggested two variations of this before. But it is a very interesting situation.
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Old 11-18-2018, 02:21 AM   #479
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Arabian Nights: Political Adventure

The City of Some-Persian-Sounding-Name in the days of the Mongol Empire is a wealthy city. Goods of all kinds pass through and it is a haven of culture and civilization. However a crises is in the works. The old Emir Abdul the Lecher is dying. As one might suspect from his name there are a large number of potential candidates in the running. All the good people of Some-Persian-Sounding-Name are worried that there will be bloodshed soon.

The players:

Abdul: He is basically a bottom-feeding Captain Renault. He is kept in power by fear of the Mongols who despise him as much as the people do but are happy with the tribute he provides. To give the devil his due, he is a capable enough diplomat to keep the city from being sacked and though probably more from cowardice then patriotism he has avoided vainly rising against the conquerors. His main fault is his private life which is likely to make for trouble. So far Abdul has even managed to avoid getting a Mongol garrison, and keeps the peace (or the lighter shade of tyranny to look at it from another point of view) with a combination of his tribe's retainers, a few mercenaries. and some ghulems bought along the way.

The Pretenders: And the race is on!

The nobility: This has two classes, the Imperial and the local. Imperial nobles are more interested in the affairs of the empire and locals are in the town. Also the later have often been in town for centuries.

The minor families and tribes: These are not quite noble but are formidable to have influence in town.

The Guilds: The various and sundry occupational sodalities.

The Neighborhood Chiefs: Exactly what it says on the tin.

The Intellectuals: Poets, philosophers, clergy, etc.

The Mobs: Basically the go to guys if you want someone to swing a stick at someone else. They are just like any street gang in any city, nothing exiting here.

Foreigners: They have a quarter of their own and are often in a precarious position having either no prince to avenge them (like the Jews) or having one to far away (like the Italians). They usually are untouched simply because they are profitable. And no one picks on visiting Mongols for obvious reasons.

Secret Agent Men: These are the guys that hire out to get things done. This town has numbers of people who are willing to work as a spy or political criminal whether for money, fun, or the interest of the faction they support.

This is meant to be a "Godfather" or "Dune" like game in an Arabian Nights setting. Magical elements may or may not appear depending on taste.

PS: The inspiration for this is actually from "Shiraz in the Age of Hafez" by John W. Limbert. I made a couple of modifications. Abdul the Lecher was my own creation though he was hardly without precedent. The book also does not mention non-Islamic foreigners which is an interesting wrinkle to put in. Other factions are borrowed from the actual factions in Shiraz at the time. The basic plot purpose of Abdul is to give a definite point where the power struggle begins instead of reality in which it just goes on forever aimlessly.
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