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Old 03-07-2011, 09:42 PM   #31
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Default Re: Renaissance Inspired Fantasy Setting

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Originally Posted by martin_rook View Post
True. I was being pretty general, just trying to take the typical image of the medieval period's premier warrior and use it to show what's different about the Renaissance period.
The points you made are totally valid too. I just wanted to make sure people got the idea that most of your traditional fantasy archetypes work fine in this sort of setting with some minor adjustment (plus I think knights with pistols are wicked cool).
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Old 03-07-2011, 10:58 PM   #32
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Default Re: Renaissance Inspired Fantasy Setting

I've been toying around with ideas about what Renaissance political entities to include and what eras to model them after-

1. Suleiman the Magnificent's Ottoman Empire- One needs a Grand Turk to menace Europe and spur on the Barbary Corsairs. My plan is to stay fairly true to life rather than going for the easy mark and making them sinister.

2. The Knights Hospitaler- piratical warrior monks are too good to pass up. So are the sieges of Rhodes and Malta.

3. Barbary Corsairs- they provide a nice foil for the knights and a nice threat to anyone bordering on the middle sea or beyond for that matter.

4. Phillip II's Spain- as I mentioned previously, I plan on turning them into the evil baddies one needs for an epic fantasy game. The idea is to take 'The Black Legend,' but demonize Spain for real (with a heavy helping of demonic possession at the top). I'll develop some options for noble Dons in resistance to side with the good guys to keep things even handed.

5. Ivan the Terrible's Russia- You don't have to stretch too far to get another serious bad guy there.

6. The French Wars of Religion- I want to keep France destabilized, so the Brits have to be the foil to the Spanish rather than a strong, united France. I also want to play up the Guises as another faction allied with the malignant forces in control of Spain.

7. Italy- I figure I'll try to work in the more interesting periods for Florence, Venice, Milan, and the Papal States. I'm thinking about making the Pope a harried, but sympathetic figure, so I don't come off as a Catholic basher. I could probably use some Borgias. We certainly need condotierre and Machiavellian politics.

8. The Swiss Cantons- we need fiercely independent mercenary pikemen don't we?

9. The Holy Roman Empire- mostly under the control of the Spanish menace, but I'll play up the religious disunity caused by the Reformation, so we can have some good guy landsknecht and reiters.

10. The Dutch Republic- This is one of the obvious fields for adventure.

11. Poland-Lithuania- Got to have someplace for those Winged Hussars to come from.

Obviously, all these locations need to be recast into fantasy mode, the same way Seventh Sea and Warhammer Fantasy have done.

I plan on focusing on Britain, so I'll save that for another post. Let me know if there's anything you think begs for inclusion.
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Old 03-09-2011, 08:41 PM   #33
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Default Re: Renaissance Inspired Fantasy Setting

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I plan on focusing on Britain, so I'll save that for another post. Let me know if there's anything you think begs for inclusion.
I know you're a good boarder (sp?) and you probably remember this

http://kasama3.deviantart.com/#/d102wxu

The background isn't fully fleshed out, but I have some major personalities developed including your Grand Turk, The (last?) Emperor of Constantinople, Cathars, various protestants, and other great powers both secular and sacred (Popes, Caliphs, Emperors and Kings -- and regents).

I really need to dig up my notes
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Old 03-09-2011, 09:25 PM   #34
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Default Re: Renaissance Inspired Fantasy Setting

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I know you're a good boarder (sp?) and you probably remember this

http://kasama3.deviantart.com/#/d102wxu

The background isn't fully fleshed out, but I have some major personalities developed including your Grand Turk, The (last?) Emperor of Constantinople, Cathars, various protestants, and other great powers both secular and sacred (Popes, Caliphs, Emperors and Kings -- and regents).

I really need to dig up my notes
I really wouldn't mind starting that game up again at some point. I certainly thought it was one of your more promising endeavors. Of course, being terribly partial to the era and the setting might have something to do with that...
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Old 03-09-2011, 09:44 PM   #35
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Default Re: Renaissance Inspired Fantasy Setting

I'm not sure exactly what I want to do with Britain.

I don't think I can do without Gloriana. Elizabeth I is simply too central to renaissance Britain to not have some sort of analog on the throne of England. The Elizabeth as Arthur / John Dee as Merlin angle taken by 7th Sea is rather tempting although I don't think they did an especially stellar job of executing it.

I definitely want border reivers, so I'm thinking that I'll go with the political situation around the beginning of Elizabeth's reign in the north.

Ireland should be as unsettled as in real life.

I'd like to think of something interesting to do with Wales to give it a little more character during the era.

While the Elizabeth approach is the obvious one, I have toyed with something more radically alternate. For example, the Elizabeth figure could be male. Edward VI could survive to adulthood. Elizabeth could marry. All of these options bring a male into the picture atop the English power structure making military embroilment in Europe likely to take on greater prominence. I haven't hit on anything that really appeals, so I expect I'll end up with something heavily inspired by real history, but I may still find inspiration of some sort.

Suggestions are welcome.
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Old 03-10-2011, 05:39 AM   #36
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Default Re: Renaissance Inspired Fantasy Setting

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While the Elizabeth approach is the obvious one, I have toyed with something more radically alternate. For example, the Elizabeth figure could be male.
I would reflect careful on changes like these

Having a male Elizabeth (which would have been christened Edward) means altering deeply the timeline: for example there would have been no Bloody Mary reign and probably no war against Spain (tricky point, this, quite difficult to foresee), while Ann Boleyn could have stayed queen.

A surviving Edward VI is interesting: he died young for a fever, but in a magic setting like your a cure could be found (a possible quest for your characters). Or the young king could have been poisoned (as many thought) or cursed by an evil warlock (again, players to the rescue).
You could also steal a page from Mark Twain's book and use the twin by the "prince and the poor". The players could be the ones to recognize the young prince in the street urchin and fight to restore him to his position. Later the twin could become an evil enemy bound to gain the throne as in the "Iron Mask" by Dumas or become Edward's shadow as in "Kagemusha" by Kurosawa.

Going back to Elizabeth, I would avoid using Dee (really, every game set in this period plays Dee as a great wizard). Personally, I would play into the concept of Astrea and warrior queen. Since your setting has magic, what about if our young Elizabeth, after a disastrous failure during a summoning, was possessed by the spirit of queen Boudicca?
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Old 03-10-2011, 07:35 AM   #37
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7. Italy- I figure I'll try to work in the more interesting periods for Florence, Venice, Milan, and the Papal States. I'm thinking about making the Pope a harried, but sympathetic figure, so I don't come off as a Catholic basher. I could probably use some Borgias. We certainly need condotierre and Machiavellian politics.
I would very much like to be able to provide more useful advice, but you have already come up with most of what I could think of. So my only contribution has to be a nitpick: the word is "condottieri" (plural; singular is "condottiero" or "condottiere"). Sorry. But I'll add that I like this setting a lot.
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Old 03-10-2011, 08:19 AM   #38
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Default Re: Renaissance Inspired Fantasy Setting

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Originally Posted by macphersonrants View Post
I'm not sure exactly what I want to do with Britain.

I don't think I can do without Gloriana. Elizabeth I is simply too central to renaissance Britain to not have some sort of analog on the throne of England.

Why not use Henry the Eighth instead?
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Old 03-10-2011, 02:53 PM   #39
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Default Re: Renaissance Inspired Fantasy Setting

I'm in the midst of researching this era to the nth degree as per this post. I've got some really good stuff that I'm happy to share with you. I'm concentrating on England ~1580-1600 but there will be visits to Russia, the Levant, mainland Europe and a visit to the Colonies on the cards as well.

If you need a hand with anything specifically or any good hooks just let me know :)
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Old 03-10-2011, 11:33 PM   #40
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Default Re: Renaissance Inspired Fantasy Setting

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Why not use Henry the Eighth instead?
There is some appeal to that. I've always felt Henry would make a reasonably good villain. He could also be a victim of demonic possession or something along those lines.

If I ran the game from the Scottish point of view Henry would make a great choice.
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