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Old 12-07-2009, 06:03 PM   #1
combatmedic
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Default GURPS Fantasy , shared world, recruiting

I am recruiting for a GURPS Fantasy setting world-building project.

goal: We will create a GURPS fantasy setting, intended for actual gaming use. It will be non-commercial in nature, intended as a 'gift' to the community.

Administrative stuff:
I will be the editor-in-chief. What that means is that I will have oversight of the project as a whole. This job is a necessary one, as I have seen shared-worlds/group projects fall apart or become incoherent without an authority to keep the project 'on track.

The editor will be in charge of admitting contributors to the project and maintaining internal consistency ( with the help of all the contributors).

A wiki will be set up, as the project evolves. This wiki will become the project website and repository of information about our setting.

For now, I am limiting the list of contributors to a total of nine individuals, including myself. More may be admitted later, but the editor will first consult with the group before making that decision. Too many contributors may make the project unmanageable.

I already have one likely recruit, so we are currently at two contributors. If anyone else in interested, please post below or PM me.

general creative guidelines:

GURPS Fantasy, shared world

TL: any between 0- 3+1 [stone age through medieval with anachronisms, but no TL 4 guns]


Sapient beings:
• common: humans [may include human sub-races with unusual hereditary/cultural traits]
• Uncommon in most locales: undead, spirits, constructs, etc
• No elves, dwarves, hobbits, orcs, etc- new non-human sapient species are possible, but should be rare, isolated, hidden, or otherwise not too prominent


Magic: default level is normal mana, large areas of low mana exist.
Standard rules with minor exceptions:
• Items created from nothing by magic must be maintained or they will disintegrate/decay [prevents use of magic from simply replacing mining, lumbering, farming, etc]
• Teleport is only possible between gates. Gates are less reliable as local mana levels drops.
• Nature of enchantment precludes mass production of even simple magic items.
• Power Investiture for ‘clerics’ is a design option- but such empowered servants of the gods/spirits should not be too terribly common [not every village priest should wield magic, or every monk and temple functionary, even in high magic zones]
• Mana fields: vary from none through very high. High and very high should be limited to fairly small pockets, not huge swathes of countryside.
• Mana levels will decline is too much is drawn out of the environment over time. Recovery of drained mana fields is slow, but special events may hasten/delay this process.

Planetary info: Assume fairly earthlike world, fantastic features are certainly possible- especially in higher mana zones.

Last edited by combatmedic; 12-12-2009 at 02:32 AM.
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Old 12-07-2009, 07:02 PM   #2
tantric
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Default Re: GURPS Fantasy , shared world, recruiting

So, my last attempt at this died the true death. My advice is that you should decide before hand whether or not there is a true mythohistory, or whether each culture will have its own conflicting beliefs. I vote for the latter, as it gives much more freedom and is more realistic, but the former certainly produces fewer conflicts.

Also, do you want Earth derived cultures, or something completely new? Stylistic guidelines would be helpful.

Last edited by tantric; 12-07-2009 at 07:07 PM.
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Old 12-07-2009, 08:26 PM   #3
combatmedic
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Default Re: GURPS Fantasy , shared world, recruiting

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Originally Posted by tantric View Post
So, my last attempt at this died the true death. My advice is that you should decide before hand whether or not there is a true mythohistory, or whether each culture will have its own conflicting beliefs. I vote for the latter, as it gives much more freedom and is more realistic, but the former certainly produces fewer conflicts.

Also, do you want Earth derived cultures, or something completely new? Stylistic guidelines would be helpful.

Each culture will have its own beliefs. Creators are free to create echoes, overlaps, parallels in mythology, of course.

This is not intended to be an Yrth-style setting, with the major cultures transplanted from Earth. That being said, I certainly think that using elements adapted from Earth's history and varied cultures is a good starting point for designing a familiar-yet-exotic setting. Don't feel bound by historical models, though. This isn't an alternate Earth, but an earthlike fantasy world. Don't be afraid to add in 'weird stuff.'
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Old 12-07-2009, 08:40 PM   #4
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Default Re: GURPS Fantasy , shared world, recruiting

I can't commit to any projects, so forgive me for contributing to the thread, but I have some observations that you might find useful.

The internet is littered with co-operative worldbuilding projects, most of them dead. It seems to me that you will have a better chance of attracting people if your world is distinctive in some clear way from all the other worlds out there. Tantric's Ubantu setting (which I would like to see developed further) would be an example of such a distinctive setting.
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Old 12-07-2009, 08:47 PM   #5
combatmedic
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Default Re: GURPS Fantasy , shared world, recruiting

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Originally Posted by Greg 1 View Post
I can't commit to any projects, so forgive me for contributing to the thread, but I have some observations that you might find useful.

The internet is littered with co-operative worldbuilding projects, most of them dead. It seems to me that you will have a better chance of attracting people if your world is distinctive in some clear way from all the other worlds out there. Tantric's Ubantu setting (which I would like to see developed further) would be an example of such a distinctive setting.
Good point.

The humanocentric aspect of the setting tends to set it apart from the majority of the fantasy RPG settings that I've seen on the web. No elves, orcs, dwarves, etc is a pretty big difference.
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Old 12-07-2009, 09:02 PM   #6
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Default Re: GURPS Fantasy , shared world, recruiting

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Originally Posted by combatmedic View Post
Good point.

The humanocentric aspect of the setting tends to set it apart from the majority of the fantasy RPG settings that I've seen on the web. No elves, orcs, dwarves, etc is a pretty big difference.
Yes, I like the humanocentric nature of your setting. I would still like to see more description of what the setting has got that makes it a unique place to adventure in.
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Old 12-07-2009, 09:15 PM   #7
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Default Re: GURPS Fantasy , shared world, recruiting

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Originally Posted by Greg 1 View Post
Yes, I like the humanocentric nature of your setting. I would still like to see more description of what the setting has got that makes it a unique place to adventure in.

Indeed, so would I. :)
That's why the contributors will be writing those unique features.

The varied and unique human cultures and 'sub-races' will no doubt be a major feature of the setting.

If the several contributors ask for a central 'hook' I have several possiblities in mind:
  • a great plague has come and gone, leaving the world diminished in population
  • a great war was recently concluded
  • the collapse of a mighty empire has ushered in an era of migrations and invasions
  • the discovery of a new continent has opened a cycle of colonization and exploration- and conflicts/collaboration with the exotic natives
I am keeping things free and open just now, as I'd like to see what ideas others will bring to the table.

Last edited by combatmedic; 12-07-2009 at 09:19 PM.
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Old 12-08-2009, 10:55 AM   #8
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Default Re: GURPS Fantasy , shared world, recruiting

Quote:
Originally Posted by combatmedic View Post
Good point.

The humanocentric aspect of the setting tends to set it apart from the majority of the fantasy RPG settings that I've seen on the web. No elves, orcs, dwarves, etc is a pretty big difference.
More of a limitation than a positive difference that will attract an audience. I've no problem with doing away with the standard fantasy races but lack of any fantasy races tends to make things less fantastic to me.

I'm a big fan of cinematic gaming so a setting that's more cinematic than Yrth would be good.

I'd suggest looking for some additional elements that would make the setting more unique and interesting.

One area I'd really love to see is integrating ley-lines into the setting. I'd also love to see aspected mana play into the setting. Hence high mana areas occur where two or more ley-lines intersect to form a node. The more lines and the more powerful the lines the larger the area of the node. Aspected mana would help make for interesting issues for mages that are built around one are of expertise.

Some interesting questions arise when you have ley-lines of a specific aspect. What happens when an Water-ley line intersects a Fire-ley line? Or more interesting is what happens when ley lines that are not diametrically opposed intersect. Say Fire and Earth lines - which I'd put intersecting at a volcano. If the Fire line is strong than I'd make it an active volcano, if Earth is stronger than a dormant one.

I'd suggest looking at GURPS Fantasy and Thaumatology for inspiration to help differentiate the setting.
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Old 12-08-2009, 11:53 AM   #9
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Default Re: GURPS Fantasy , shared world, recruiting

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Originally Posted by griffin View Post
More of a limitation than a positive difference that will attract an audience. I've no problem with doing away with the standard fantasy races but lack of any fantasy races tends to make things less fantastic to me.

I'm a big fan of cinematic gaming so a setting that's more cinematic than Yrth would be good.

I'd suggest looking for some additional elements that would make the setting more unique and interesting.

One area I'd really love to see is integrating ley-lines into the setting. I'd also love to see aspected mana play into the setting. Hence high mana areas occur where two or more ley-lines intersect to form a node. The more lines and the more powerful the lines the larger the area of the node. Aspected mana would help make for interesting issues for mages that are built around one are of expertise.

Some interesting questions arise when you have ley-lines of a specific aspect. What happens when an Water-ley line intersects a Fire-ley line? Or more interesting is what happens when ley lines that are not diametrically opposed intersect. Say Fire and Earth lines - which I'd put intersecting at a volcano. If the Fire line is strong than I'd make it an active volcano, if Earth is stronger than a dormant one.

I'd suggest looking at GURPS Fantasy and Thaumatology for inspiration to help differentiate the setting.

I completely disagree with you about the 'non-humans.' Elves, dwarves, hobbits, etc have been done to death in a hundred imitations of Tolkien. I've gotten positive feedback from others on this.

I'm not really sure what you mean by a cinematic setting.
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