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RogerDee

Pulp / Cinematic Roman Campaign

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Hi Folks,

If you were to run one in Rome using Pulp Cthulhu as a base - would you just use the Archetypes etc in there or make your own for an RP set in Rome? Just cannot decide how much work to put in at the moment, so your thoughts and ideas would be appreciated.

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What might ease your workload is to get hold of Cthulhu Invictus, either version, which contains a wide variety of suitable Occupations.

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I don't have Cthulhu Invictus but BRP Rome from Alephtar is and would be super useful. It contains all necessary information to run a Rome campaign. As a second choice, Mythic Rome from The Design Mechanism is basically the same book but it replaces the BRP information with Mythras...

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1 hour ago, ragr said:

What might ease your workload is to get hold of Cthulhu Invictus, either version, which contains a wide variety of suitable Occupations.

56 minutes ago, Atgxtg said:

Yes , Cthulhu Invictus and/or BRP Rome. Both could help to flesh out the setting.

38 minutes ago, rsanford said:

I don't have Cthulhu Invictus but BRP Rome from Alephtar is and would be super useful. It contains all necessary information to run a Rome campaign. As a second choice, Mythic Rome from The Design Mechanism is basically the same book but it replaces the BRP information with Mythras...

I have both of the above actually.

But would you create new Cinematic / Pulp templates or just use the ones from Pulp?

 

 

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Adapt the ones from Pulp or have your players do it and get some investment. But then I like an easy life.

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1 hour ago, ragr said:

Adapt the ones from Pulp or have your players do it and get some investment. But then I like an easy life.

What kind of archetypes would work do you think?

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The only one that stands out as being completely unsuitable to a simple conversion would be Grease Monkey - even then I guess a tinkerer of mechanical devices would work, ex-military using ballistae, onagers or scorpios. I don't think using any of the others will cause many headaches.

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6 hours ago, ragr said:

The only one that stands out as being completely unsuitable to a simple conversion would be Grease Monkey - even then I guess a tinkerer of mechanical devices would work, ex-military using ballistae, onagers or scorpios. I don't think using any of the others will cause many headaches.

Yeah the Romans had all sort of of engineers in their military so even Grease Monkey would probably be adaptable assuming the GM is willing to let the players have access to small siege engines and chariots. The idea of the Romans fighting off a horde of Deep Ones with light ballista and catapults could be very pulp-ish -at least as "Pulp" as .any Roman era game could be. I mean Roman Pulp would be a whole new genre. Cthulhu Roman Pulp is just so surreal. I try to reimagine classic Pulp characters, such as the Shadow or Doc Savage in and ancient Roman setting, with Mythos stuff in the background. There's a fresh new RPG in there somewhere.

 

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Okay so essentially my idea is that the characters are immortals travelling through the ages.

The first time period would be obviously be Rome, likely followed by the Dark Ages.

 

 

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Watch a bunch of Fifties sword-and-sandal movies for inspiration!  Archetypes?

The Avenger -- The Evil Usurper (tm) has killed his/her father the king and stolen the kingdom/city-state/love interest (probably all of the above).  The Avenger is traveling incognito while seeking allies to help him take it all back before the villain can marry the Love Interest and consolidate his power.

The Love Interest -- A pawn in the Evil Usurper's political games, the Love Interest is frequently the Rightful Heir (unless The Avenger is) whom the bad guy needs to marry to legitimize his rule.  The Love Interest acts as the heroes' spy within the palace but is always being watched and faces death if the villain thinks she has outlived her usefulness.  The L.I. Is always ridiculously good-looking and can sometimes be a handsome prince when the Evil Usurper (tm) is a scheming queen or sorceress.

The Beefy Guy -- Sometimes The Avenger but often an independent ally, the Beefy Guy is strong enough to lift gates off their hinges, overturn wagons and chariots with one hand, and fight off at least six evil minions at once.  His chest is at least 5 feet wide and he rarely wears a shirt.

The Lusty, Busty Henchwoman -- She used to be the villain's main squeeze but now he's thrown her over for the princess.  The Henchwoman might ultimately become an ally of the good guys but in the meantime she is likely to try to murder the Love Interest out of jealousy, poison or seduce any hero she can get her well-manicured fingers on, or hypnotize a potentially friendly nobleman who might aid the Rightful Heir.

Edited by seneschal

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1 hour ago, RogerDee said:

Okay so essentially my idea is that the characters are immortals travelling through the ages.

The first time period would be obviously be Rome, likely followed by the Dark Ages.

Are they travelling in time sequentially (i.e. living through the periods as they happen) or do they have some sort of way of jumping from one era to the next?

In other words are the eras themselves somehow important tot he story, or are they just being used to illustrate that the characters are immortal and have lived in all this different times and places? The answer could really impact on what directions the game could go in, and there are so many possibilities.

Also, with the characters being immortal, are they actually human, or some sort of beings that only resemble humans? Do they keep the same bodies or inhabit news ones? Lots of different ways to go with it. 

 

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8 minutes ago, Atgxtg said:

Are they travelling in time sequentially (i.e. living through the periods as they happen) or do they have some sort of way of jumping from one era to the next?

In other words are the eras themselves somehow important tot he story, or are they just being used to illustrate that the characters are immortal and have lived in all this different times and places? The answer could really impact on what directions the game could go in, and there are so many possibilities.

Also, with the characters being immortal, are they actually human, or some sort of beings that only resemble humans? Do they keep the same bodies or inhabit news ones? Lots of different ways to go with it. 

They will be travelling through time sequentially, although there will be time skips - obviously.

The eras are only important in that there is stuff written for them, and have material that I can use to create a story arc for the players to use.  And yeah it will be used to illustrate immortality and they have lived in different times and places.

The players are just human immortals - although the mechanics, or rather the template, is still work-in-progress.

To be honest my only worry was insanity-, but then being immortal would involve a certain of insanity by default - whether it is losing lovers, children (whether they can have them or not is undecided, or adopted), and their children's children will all die of age, illness or mishap.  But then even insanity is relative to someone like an immortal - they could literally be a basking weaving nutcase for a decade or two, but will eventually get better. There could even be a certain amount of immunity to the mythos, just through exposure - something hinted at in the 7e rules.

 

 

 

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21 minutes ago, commandercrud said:

The new Cthulhu Invictus is very cool. I'd recommend using that.

I have 7e Invictus, and the updated Dark ages.

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I was just thinking about Pendragon, then another idea occurred to me, I could also run an arc in Robin of Sherwood too.

To be honest this is very much inspired by the Old Guard film (& Highlander to some extent), if anyone has seen it on Netflix?

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1 hour ago, RogerDee said:

I was just thinking about Pendragon, then another idea occurred to me, I could also run an arc in Robin of Sherwood too.

Yup. With this sort of set up you can plut the characters in anyplace/anytime, provided they aren't penned in to be at some other place. 

1 hour ago, RogerDee said:

To be honest this is very much inspired by the Old Guard film (& Highlander to some extent), if anyone has seen it on Netflix?

Highlander was what sprang to mind to me from what you mentioned so far.. Speaking of which, have you worked out how and why they are immortal yet, and if there is some  overarching purpose to it? 

2 hours ago, RogerDee said:

To be honest my only worry was insanity-, but then being immortal would involve a certain of insanity by default - whether it is losing lovers, children (whether they can have them or not is undecided, or adopted), and their children's children will all die of age, illness or mishap.  But then even insanity is relative to someone like an immortal - they could literally be a basking weaving nutcase for a decade or two, but will eventually get better. There could even be a certain amount of immunity to the mythos, just through exposure - something hinted at in the 7e rules.

It wouldn't necessarily even be that severe. Modern scientific thinking  thinking postulates that human memory works the way it does, and we forget stuff, in order to help remember the stuff we need to and want to. So an immortal who have lived for hundred of years might recall their past lives much the way we remember our childhoods and infancy. So by the time of "Robin of Sherwood" a player's memory of Julius Caesar might be reduced to that of vague memories such that we might have about a neighbor who lived up the street when we were children. 

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11 hours ago, Atgxtg said:

Yup. With this sort of set up you can plut the characters in anyplace/anytime, provided they aren't penned in to be at some other place. 

Highlander was what sprang to mind to me from what you mentioned so far.. Speaking of which, have you worked out how and why they are immortal yet, and if there is some  overarching purpose to it? 

It wouldn't necessarily even be that severe. Modern scientific thinking  thinking postulates that human memory works the way it does, and we forget stuff, in order to help remember the stuff we need to and want to. So an immortal who have lived for hundred of years might recall their past lives much the way we remember our childhoods and infancy. So by the time of "Robin of Sherwood" a player's memory of Julius Caesar might be reduced to that of vague memories such that we might have about a neighbor who lived up the street when we were children. 

I am actually quite looking froward to doing this over the next few months, or so.

If I did do Highlander, it would be closer to the series. Those seen in the film are too powerful. But it would be with a twist, the elder gods obliterated an Old One, body, and soul - the latter of which shattered, spread across the Earth, in space and time. The shards are embedded in humans, creating immortals. Now the reason they seek to battle, is to unite and form the old one again. Trouble is it would require some form of beheading quickening mechanic, and I cannot be overly bothered.

So as to immortality, I was thinking more Man of Earth (and the sequel Holocene man), both are utterly amazing films and well worth a watch. Man of Earth was written by Bixby on his deathbed, this was the same guy who wrote TOS Methuseleh episode, and would work quite well here I think. In fact a big selling point to my players will be that they can take on the roles of characters from history, in the same way that Flint did in Star Trek, Alexander the Great, Brahms, Mozart, Da Vinci etc.

Anything to do with religious characters / individuals would be verboten, naturally - as in Man from Earth, John had literally studied with Buddha, and also then become Jesus. But he did 'forget' thinks in the sense, that the knowledge was still there, it was not until he talked about it that it came to the fore. Thing is, the players must fulfil the prerequisites to be said character. So a player cannot suddenly decide in the 15th Century to start tinkering - it must be thing they have been doing centuries prior to that. So they would need Mechanics around 90%, Gadgeteer at 90%+, as well as having Art at at least 99%. Tough prerequisites, but fair.

In the same that Flint had science beyond the Federation when Kirk met him.

EDIT: However, science skills will have to repurchased once we reach the 19th Century (unless they have been pushing the forefront inbetween), in the same way that we have learned more, and that spirits no longer carry infection etc. Most secondary school children would know more science, or chemistry than a lot in the 16th century with their rather outdated knowledge.

To a greater or lesser extent, I want the players to excel in various ways. So a tinkerer that becomes Da Vinci  might be experimenting with small rockets in the 17th Century, and by 19th century might be landing rockets on the Moon, or Mars, and by the 21st century may well have invented warp drive, or some other superluminal method. I am okay with that. In the same way that if a player wanted to go the martial route, they could be a cross between Pai Mei and Iron Fist (MCU tv), both are powerful but can be dealt with in sufficient numbers or weaponry (kind of why Danny Rand hid behind cover when guns were used). Sure immortality would kind of prevent perma-death through gunfire, most of the time.

In a similar way, if a player wanted to go a Doctor Strange route, that is fine. I would be removing the sanity mechanic for most spells, and same too for any kind of permanent attribute loss. They can be diminished over time, but will fully recover. To quote Qui-Gonn, there is always a bigger fish.

On a side note, and world building tangent, it is also my idea that the feeble Earth gods, are also immortals from a bygone Era - likely from Atlantis or Mu. In the same way I'll be making the people of K'n-yan some kind of humans seeking enlightenment, and yes they will living in Shambhala. In all cases they have likely found various kinds of magic over the years, but can only advance so far, or not want to attract the notice of various extra-terrestrial incorporeal intelligences.

On the magic front, although using Grand Grimoire, I also want players, even those without magical inclinations, to be able to learn snippets. So in this regard i will stealing from Lords of Gossamer, and also Classic Fantasy here with regard to this.

Cantrips: Simple, can only do limited stuff, like Light, Repair, that kind of thing.

Spells: Can be from any arcana.

Arcana: Fire, Water, etc. But it is subject to shaping mechanics, which can result in costly expenditure.

I may also split magic up, in the sense that D100 has published multiple different casting methods over it's lifetime, something i will be incorporating. It will keep things interesting. On top of this, is also the Grand Grimoire for more mythos related spells.

On another fun side note, what i may well do is move the players backwards or even forward in time too. So for example, a player may well find themselves by in Hyperborea, encountering Conan. I may steal from some of the rpg's, but will, not be beholden to canon (too many people have read the books). So there will be some semblances, but a lot of differences. Maybe even have their character get drunk in a 1920's bar, and accidentally spill some of their tale to a Rob E Howard who will then go on to write the books.

As to the Old Ones and their ilk, for this I will likely go a Babylon 5 / Star Trek  type approach, in that they are hyper advanced aliens. But like any other mythos adventure, they cannot encounter it all the time. In fact humans can just as evil, if not more so, in that they know what they are doing but do it anyway. Whereas a hyper advanced alien may not even view us as being sentient, under their criteria.

 

Edited by RogerDee

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6 hours ago, RogerDee said:

I am actually quite looking froward to doing this over the next few months, or so.

That;s good. It would be a rather bad sign if you weren't looking forward to it - the kiss of death.

6 hours ago, RogerDee said:

If I did do Highlander, it would be closer to the series. Those seen in the film are too powerful.

THose seen if the film tell the story of Connor McLeod and the "endgame" of the immortals. The series had to be differernt becuase it not only had a differernt protagonist, but essentially was a sequel to a story that had already been told and tied up most of the loose ends. By the end of the film, there were no more immortals. 

6 hours ago, RogerDee said:

But it would be with a twist, the elder gods obliterated an Old One, body, and soul - the latter of which shattered, spread across the Earth, in space and time. The shards are embedded in humans, creating immortals. Now the reason they seek to battle, is to unite and form the old one again.

I was wondering if you were thinknig of something Lovecrafting. An elder power or agents of an elder power in human form for some reason.

6 hours ago, RogerDee said:

Trouble is it would require some form of beheading quickening mechanic, and I cannot be overly bothered.

It wouldn't be all that tough to do it, if you wanted to, although I could see why you wouldn't want to go that route. Highlander would require you to focus on some things that might not work well with the other stuff you've mentioned. There is no real reason for the immortals to work together.

6 hours ago, RogerDee said:

So as to immortality, I was thinking more Man of Earth (and the sequel Holocene man), both are utterly amazing films and well worth a watch. Man of Earth was written by Bixby on his deathbed, this was the same guy who wrote TOS Methuseleh episode, and would work quite well here I think. In fact a big selling point to my players will be that they can take on the roles of characters from history, in the same way that Flint did in Star Trek, Alexander the Great, Brahms, Mozart, Da Vinci etc.

I haven't seen Man of Earth, so I can't comment on it. Requiem for Methuselah was an "okay" TOS episode. The character of Flint is a bit cute, but works in the show. Supposedly the ending where Spock uses a mild meld to make Kirk forget Rayna was lifted from City of the Edge of Forever. The whole love triangle is a bit contrived though. It probably would have been better if Rayna was patterend after another Rayna that Kirk had already had feelings for, but they had done that sort of idea already.

6 hours ago, RogerDee said:

In the same that Flint had science beyond the Federation when Kirk met him.

There is some logic behind that. If someone had been a genius and around for centuries, then went off into space and encoutered other alien species, he might be well ahead of the Federation in some areas. Just think of where da Vinci or Newton might be if they were still alive and healthy today. 

6 hours ago, RogerDee said:

EDIT: However, science skills will have to repurchased once we reach the 19th Century (unless they have been pushing the forefront inbetween), in the same way that we have learned more, and that spirits no longer carry infection etc. Most secondary school children would know more science, or chemistry than a lot in the 16th century with their rather outdated knowledge.

Some of it would carry over. We still use bits of mathematics and geometry from the ancients, such as Pythagoras theory in geometry. What you might want to do in introduce a tech level rating any apply a modifier to tech that is more advanced (and perhaps less advanced to some extent, too). 

 

6 hours ago, RogerDee said:

To a greater or lesser extent, I want the players to excel in various ways. So a tinkerer that becomes Da Vinci.... 

Speaking of which, are you going to let the players choose to be historical figures, force them to be, or leave it open?

 

6 hours ago, RogerDee said:

On a side note, and world building tangent, it is also my idea that the feeble Earth gods, are also immortals from a bygone Era - likely from Atlantis or Mu.

One idea I had was that you players could be the survivors of Atlantis, which had devopted medical science advanced enough to give thier people immortality. They could be trying to find some way of restoring the lost continent. You could include Mu as either another such land, or a rival land. Heck, you could even make Mu R'yleth, and the whole sinking of Atlantis a necessary side effect of a spell that keeps Ryleth under, and Cthulhu napping. THe players could then oppose the cultists trying to awaken Cthulhu, as they wouldn't want the sacrfice of Atlantis to be in vain. 

 

6 hours ago, RogerDee said:

 

I may also split magic up, in the sense that D100 has published multiple different casting methods over it's lifetime, something i will be incorporating. It will keep things interesting. On top of this, is also the Grand Grimoire for more mythos related spells.

How do you plan on handling magic being pretty much an unknown in the modern world? If you use a lot of overt flashy stuff, it will be hard to keep it under wraps for very long. You might want to come up with some reason as to why we don''t see people getting zapped with eldrich bolts of magic on the Six O'clock News. Maybe there is some reason as to why magic must be kept secret- either some sort of metaphyscial reason, or maybe the magicians need to keep a low profile and will eliminate those who try to spill the beans?  Unless you want the average people to be aware of magic. 

6 hours ago, RogerDee said:

On another fun side note, what i may well do is move the players backwards or even forward in time too

In that case you might want either some item or the effect of some great spell to be the reason. For example, let's say the players were survivors from Atlantis who escaped by some magical means, but who had to rush the ritual to get away before sinking beneath the waves. Let's say that to escape they had to travel back to a time before the spell took effect, but as the magical energy of the spell weaves it way back in time the wave hits them again and moves them again. So they have to find the Great McGuffin  used in the ritual so that they that can establish themselves in one particular point in time. You could also have Altnatis be from the future rather than the past, with the legends of it orginaing from the survors who were transported to the past. 

6 hours ago, RogerDee said:

As to the Old Ones and their ilk, for this I will likely go a Babylon 5 / Star Trek  type approach, in that they are hyper advanced aliens. But like any other mythos adventure, they cannot encounter it all the time. In fact humans can just as evil, if not more so, in that they know what they are doing but do it anyway. Whereas a hyper advanced alien may not even view us as being sentient, under their criteria.

It's a workable approach. Generally speaking hyper powerful beings don't really work that well in an RPG. In most stories they work to either put the heroes through the wringer, or explain some sort of morality. All that works great in a story, where the writers get to control what the heroes do and say, but not so well with actual players who might not have the epiphany need to solve the story.

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1 hour ago, Atgxtg said:

That;s good. It would be a rather bad sign if you weren't looking forward to it - the kiss of death.

THose seen if the film tell the story of Connor McLeod and the "endgame" of the immortals. The series had to be differernt becuase it not only had a differernt protagonist, but essentially was a sequel to a story that had already been told and tied up most of the loose ends. By the end of the film, there were no more immortals. 

I was wondering if you were thinknig of something Lovecrafting. An elder power or agents of an elder power in human form for some reason.

It wouldn't be all that tough to do it, if you wanted to, although I could see why you wouldn't want to go that route. Highlander would require you to focus on some things that might not work well with the other stuff you've mentioned. There is no real reason for the immortals to work together.

I haven't seen Man of Earth, so I can't comment on it. Requiem for Methuselah was an "okay" TOS episode. The character of Flint is a bit cute, but works in the show. Supposedly the ending where Spock uses a mild meld to make Kirk forget Rayna was lifted from City of the Edge of Forever. The whole love triangle is a bit contrived though. It probably would have been better if Rayna was patterend after another Rayna that Kirk had already had feelings for, but they had done that sort of idea already.

There is some logic behind that. If someone had been a genius and around for centuries, then went off into space and encoutered other alien species, he might be well ahead of the Federation in some areas. Just think of where da Vinci or Newton might be if they were still alive and healthy today. 

Some of it would carry over. We still use bits of mathematics and geometry from the ancients, such as Pythagoras theory in geometry. What you might want to do in introduce a tech level rating any apply a modifier to tech that is more advanced (and perhaps less advanced to some extent, too). 

Speaking of which, are you going to let the players choose to be historical figures, force them to be, or leave it open?

One idea I had was that you players could be the survivors of Atlantis, which had devopted medical science advanced enough to give thier people immortality. They could be trying to find some way of restoring the lost continent. You could include Mu as either another such land, or a rival land. Heck, you could even make Mu R'yleth, and the whole sinking of Atlantis a necessary side effect of a spell that keeps Ryleth under, and Cthulhu napping. THe players could then oppose the cultists trying to awaken Cthulhu, as they wouldn't want the sacrfice of Atlantis to be in vain. 

How do you plan on handling magic being pretty much an unknown in the modern world? If you use a lot of overt flashy stuff, it will be hard to keep it under wraps for very long. You might want to come up with some reason as to why we don''t see people getting zapped with eldrich bolts of magic on the Six O'clock News. Maybe there is some reason as to why magic must be kept secret- either some sort of metaphyscial reason, or maybe the magicians need to keep a low profile and will eliminate those who try to spill the beans?  Unless you want the average people to be aware of magic. 

In that case you might want either some item or the effect of some great spell to be the reason. For example, let's say the players were survivors from Atlantis who escaped by some magical means, but who had to rush the ritual to get away before sinking beneath the waves. Let's say that to escape they had to travel back to a time before the spell took effect, but as the magical energy of the spell weaves it way back in time the wave hits them again and moves them again. So they have to find the Great McGuffin  used in the ritual so that they that can establish themselves in one particular point in time. You could also have Altnatis be from the future rather than the past, with the legends of it orginaing from the survors who were transported to the past. 

It's a workable approach. Generally speaking hyper powerful beings don't really work that well in an RPG. In most stories they work to either put the heroes through the wringer, or explain some sort of morality. All that works great in a story, where the writers get to control what the heroes do and say, but not so well with actual players who might not have the epiphany need to solve the story.

Highlander is just problematical to be honest, like we agree and makes it difficult. Working together, various mechanics is too much headache. On a side note, I did start writing a story, it would have been a crossover (B5, Highlander and Trek) where an immortal was on Vulca chopping wood, only to encounter a Vorlon where they had a rather heated conversation. Never did finish it.

It was why I wanted to go Man of Earth type idea, players have no reason to kill one another, and the fact that historical figures could be alive today is super cool. In Holocene Man John actually says that Buddha was not actually vegetarian, but hated the idea of animals suffering. But yeah some bits, maths especially would carry over, but a lot of the science would not. But the tech level modifier is a good idea though. I'll have to think on how to apply to it.......

I will leave it open for players to choose whether to be historical figures or not - but hey, who would refuse lol

On the Atlantis survivors, i did think of that, but it is too much like Armageddon from Classic Unisystem, and to be honest I would be tempted to use that instead of D100, but something I have to create from the ground up invests me in what I am doing.

As to flashy magic, and not being known in modern day. Same reason to keep their immortality secret - who wants to be locked in a lab, or have their physical body bolted to a chair that they cannot escape from? Plus I could include Delta Green to ensure they get sufficient warning on that score.

On the McGuffin front, honestly I did consider stealing something from Hawkmoon, as i am sure there was a device for it. So not a bad idea, certainly do not want players travelling willy-nilly, that would be a pain. Plus having others attempt to steal it, and perhaps it end up destroyed would be a good way I guess.

On the monsters, I am just itching to try out the new Malleus Monstrorum to be honest, and that all the deities only have avatars statted up. Leaving it open for others to be lesser or greater powers.

Plus I look at in the same way no human in B5 could fight a Vorlon unleashed (except maybe Jason Ironheart after changing). Kosh was literally capable to destroying B5 all by his lonesome. But i could easily use the Elohim from Val-Du-Loup as a species of elder gods, that created the Nephilim (Engineers from Aliens), which would allow me to mix stuff in, if i wanted. Usually the best thing i have found, is to hint at inclusion, but leave it open.

 

Edited by RogerDee

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1 hour ago, RogerDee said:

Highlander is just problematical to be honest, like we agree and makes it difficult. Working together, various mechanics is too much headache. On a side note, I did start writing a story, it would have been a crossover (B5, Highlander and Trek) where an immortal was on Vulca chopping wood, only to encounter a Vorlon where they had a rather heated conversation. Never did finish it.

Not every idea/setting mixes well with others. Highlander is great as a stand alone story, but suffers in terms of a series or RPG because it pretty much starts with the Gathering and you can't do much with it without changing the ending. Except maybe a prequel, but even that would be tainted with knowing that all the PCs were going to get beheaded by the 1980s.

 

The game mechanics really wouldn't be all that much of a problem. All you really need is a way to handle the immortals immortality, their healing/regeneration ability, their apparent boosting of their abilities somewhat (probably solved by porting over Hero Points from BRP), and some sort of way of getting POW, and maybe skill/skill checks from those they defeat. All in all it's not that bad. Nowhere near as much work as, say, running Amber would be with BRP. 

 

I think the real problems come when you mix in other settings and characters. It's hard to mix them into other settings without either overwhelming the other setting due to sheer skill (someone with a thousand years of sword practice could seriously outclass most master swordsmen), or lagging behind when they run into something more powerful. It's one reason why corssovers are all such a tricky tapdance.

 

1 hour ago, RogerDee said:

It was why I wanted to go Man of Earth type idea, players have no reason to kill one another, and the fact that historical figures could be alive today is super cool.

Yeah,. It's similar to why my future Amber campaign will be set after the Patterfall war, when the Amberites aren't squabbling over the throne anymore.

1 hour ago, RogerDee said:

I will leave it open for players to choose whether to be historical figures or not - but hey, who would refuse lol

I suppose that would depend on which figure someone got identified with, or how that meshes with thier character concept. A player mightnot mind his character being the orginal King Arthur, but probably wouldn't want to be Attila the Hun. 

1 hour ago, RogerDee said:

On the Atlantis survivors, i did think of that, but it is too much like Armageddon from Classic Unisystem, and to be honest I would be tempted to use that instead of D100, but something I have to create from the ground up invests me in what I am doing.

Fair enough. It was just an idea.

1 hour ago, RogerDee said:

As to flashy magic, and not being known in modern day. Same reason to keep their immortality secret - who wants to be locked in a lab, or have their physical body bolted to a chair that they cannot escape from? Plus I could include Delta Green to ensure they get sufficient warning on that score.

Okay, so the magic will be underground then. That can be fun too, since, like with Trek's Prime Directive, you can put players in tough situations that they could solve in a heartbeat, if only they could use magic. 

1 hour ago, RogerDee said:

On the McGuffin front, honestly I did consider stealing something from Hawkmoon, as i am sure there was a device for it. So not a bad idea, certainly do not want players travelling willy-nilly, that would be a pain. Plus having others attempt to steal it, and perhaps it end up destroyed would be a good way I guess.

What I was thinking of was that the players had it orginally, as it it was shifted them to thier current time, but they don't have it anymore and have to find it again to either get home, or to stop jumping around in time. It just gives you a plot device to nudge the players towards doing something, as you could drop leads to the McGuffin. THe actual device need not ever appear in your campaign, or maybe just show up in the finale.

1 hour ago, RogerDee said:

On the monsters, I am just itching to try out the new Malleus Monstrorum to be honest, and that all the deities only have avatars statted up. Leaving it open for others to be lesser or greater powers.

Plus I look at in the same way no human in B5 could fight a Vorlon unleashed (except maybe Jason Ironheart after changing). Kosh was literally capable to destroying B5 all by his lonesome. But i could easily use the Elohim from Val-Du-Loup as a species of elder gods, that created the Nephilim (Engineers from Aliens), which would allow me to mix stuff in, if i wanted. Usually the best thing i have found, is to hint at inclusion, but leave it open.

Be careful. Really powerful beings are fun in fiction, but generally suck as NPCs. One of the main reasons why people game is to have agency, the ability to make decisions and do things that impact the world around them. That's hard to have if you got ultra powerful gods and aliens running around. 

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17 hours ago, Atgxtg said:

Not every idea/setting mixes well with others. Highlander is great as a stand alone story, but suffers in terms of a series or RPG because it pretty much starts with the Gathering and you can't do much with it without changing the ending. Except maybe a prequel, but even that would be tainted with knowing that all the PCs were going to get beheaded by the 1980s.

The game mechanics really wouldn't be all that much of a problem. All you really need is a way to handle the immortals immortality, their healing/regeneration ability, their apparent boosting of their abilities somewhat (probably solved by porting over Hero Points from BRP), and some sort of way of getting POW, and maybe skill/skill checks from those they defeat. All in all it's not that bad. Nowhere near as much work as, say, running Amber would be with BRP. 

I think the real problems come when you mix in other settings and characters. It's hard to mix them into other settings without either overwhelming the other setting due to sheer skill (someone with a thousand years of sword practice could seriously outclass most master swordsmen), or lagging behind when they run into something more powerful. It's one reason why corssovers are all such a tricky tapdance.

Yeah,. It's similar to why my future Amber campaign will be set after the Patterfall war, when the Amberites aren't squabbling over the throne anymore.

I suppose that would depend on which figure someone got identified with, or how that meshes with thier character concept. A player mightnot mind his character being the orginal King Arthur, but probably wouldn't want to be Attila the Hun. 

Fair enough. It was just an idea.

Okay, so the magic will be underground then. That can be fun too, since, like with Trek's Prime Directive, you can put players in tough situations that they could solve in a heartbeat, if only they could use magic. 

What I was thinking of was that the players had it orginally, as it it was shifted them to thier current time, but they don't have it anymore and have to find it again to either get home, or to stop jumping around in time. It just gives you a plot device to nudge the players towards doing something, as you could drop leads to the McGuffin. THe actual device need not ever appear in your campaign, or maybe just show up in the finale.

Be careful. Really powerful beings are fun in fiction, but generally suck as NPCs. One of the main reasons why people game is to have agency, the ability to make decisions and do things that impact the world around them. That's hard to have if you got ultra powerful gods and aliens running around. 

You are right about film Highlander, unless you make it some alternate universe, kind of why, as we all know, the series continued and called the film a Mini-Gathering or something. Then we have contradiction between book, film and series. In the former immortals were covered in scars Oliver Queen style; film was implied to heal from all wounds, and in the series we know that body parts do not grow back. But yeah, millennia old immortals would outclass all other swordsman, which is okay, and I guess this was shown in H4 with both Macleods soundly trashing half a dozen others without effort.  In fact there was a reasonable Highlander rpg called Legacy or something. 

I personally love crossovers, but there needs to be internal consistency, and make sense. For instance in Man from Earth, it makes a convert dig at highlander, when he states that they cannot sense each other or know if someone else is immortal (had to lol when i heard it).

On the Amber front, I re-wrote a lot of the powers and currently working on a combined setting of Lords of Gossamer, Amber and Lords of Olympus. But then I looked upon Amberites as being similar to Lords of Order and Chaos from DC or Moorcock. Shapeshifting to take on different forms (Q-style), Shadow to manipulate reality shadows. Then I kind of crossed this over with Torg - Reality Raiders / Stormers start with Gossamer Manipulation Matter, Creatures, then Reality.

As to historical characters, yeah, there has to be some caveats - no mass murderers, so no playing a reformed Hitler, or stupid shit like that. Even someone like Alexander the Great would be off limits (or so far in the past), unless you know the group will not mind or be offended and the character can role play some of the experiences in the correct way.

Shifting to current time, e.g. Rome, might not be a bad shout - but you would have to assume they manage to learn Latin reasonably quickly.

As to powerful beings, that is why i am thinking B5 - in Trek they can be too powerful or overbearing, but in B5 that is less the case. When you look at Lorien he could easily have been one of the Buddhas, and it is hinted, that one of the First Ones may be been Jesus - he mentions that love being eternal is one of the greatest illusions mankind has ever received. So from a Call of Cthulhu standpoint it works quite well, but they cannot appear too often. Encountering a First One should be a finale for rp in any time period such that the characters could even say that they haven't seen anything like Big boss in nearly five hundred years. It adds context, and gives them cause for reflection on where they want to advance in future.

 

Edited by RogerDee

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3 hours ago, RogerDee said:

You are right about film Highlander, unless you make it some alternate universe, kind of why, as we all know, the series continued and called the film a Mini-Gathering or something.

Yeah. The first film was a self contained stand alone story by Gregory Widen, who moved onto other things. The sequle fimls and series were all attempts by the Producers to go back to the well to try and get more out of it, and pretty much all meant some sort of alternate universe where the first film wasn't really the ending. 

3 hours ago, RogerDee said:

Then we have contradiction between book, film and series. In the former immortals were covered in scars Oliver Queen style; film was implied to heal from all wounds, and in the series we know that body parts do not grow back.

Not quite. In the films someone couldn't die and anything other than head/neck damage seems to have come back remarkably quickly. I mention head/neck damage specially as the Kurgan still had a scar from Ramirez's near success. In the TV series the immortals die and came back. Hence Connor cannot drown., but Duncan can, but comes back when he is out of the water.

3 hours ago, RogerDee said:

But yeah, millennia old immortals would outclass all other swordsman, which is okay, and I guess this was shown in H4 with both Macleods soundly trashing half a dozen others without effort.  In fact there was a reasonable Highlander rpg called Legacy or something. 

Yes they probably would, if they had a reason to maintain and improve thier skill, as they would in Highlander. There's probably a point of diminishing returns though, so realistically they might not be all that much better than a mortal swordsman, but every little bit helps, and there are only so many master swordsmen to go around.

3 hours ago, RogerDee said:

I personally love crossovers, but there needs to be internal consistency, and make sense. For instance in Man from Earth, it makes a convert dig at highlander, when he states that they cannot sense each other or know if someone else is immortal (had to lol when i heard it).

Yes, that's something I was trying to get across earlier. When you mix settings you want to do justice to both. That's fairly easy if the two settings are similar, but more complicated if the settings are differnt or if one setting has a differnt tone or  power level than another. For instance, mixing the Maltese Falcon with A Bugs Bunny short with Godzilla thrown is is going to be a tough crossover to do justice to the Sam Spade character. Best case scenario is probably going to look like "Who Framed Roger Rabbit" with late Showa heroic Godzilla fighting space monsters in the background. Perhaps entertianing, but nothing like a Daschiell Hammett story.

 

3 hours ago, RogerDee said:

On the Amber front, I re-wrote a lot of the powers and currently working on a combined setting of Lords of Gossamer, Amber and Lords of Olympus. But then I looked upon Amberites as being similar to Lords of Order and Chaos from DC or Moorcock. Shapeshifting to take on different forms (Q-style), Shadow to manipulate reality shadows. Then I kind of crossed this over with Torg - Reality Raiders / Stormers start with Gossamer Manipulation Matter, Creatures, then Reality.

That crossover might be an acquired taste. I mean I can see Gms crossover over Gossamer with Amber due to the similarities between the games, but mixing Amber with anything else is inherently problematic, as it makes anything else a subset of the Amberverse.

3 hours ago, RogerDee said:

As to historical characters, yeah, there has to be some caveats - no mass murderers, so no playing a reformed Hitler, or stupid shit like that. Even someone like Alexander the Great would be off limits (or so far in the past), unless you know the group will not mind or be offended and the character can role play some of the experiences in the correct way.

THat's kind of the problem with playing with any established history that is set. For instance, a PC who plays or interacts with any historical fighre who doesn't follow histroy is liable to change it, either by accident or design. Fori instance, warning Caesar of the assination plot or something. 

3 hours ago, RogerDee said:

Shifting to current time, e.g. Rome, might not be a bad shout - but you would have to assume they manage to learn Latin reasonably quickly.

Or just let five to ten years go back as they pick it up. One of the things with immoral characters is that they don't have any reason to rush, unless you give them one. 

3 hours ago, RogerDee said:

As to powerful beings, that is why i am thinking B5 - in Trek they can be too powerful or overbearing, but in B5 that is less the case. When you look at Lorien he could easily have been one of the Buddhas, and it is hinted, that one of the First Ones may be been Jesus - he mentions that love being eternal is one of the greatest illusions mankind has ever received. So from a Call of Cthulhu standpoint it works quite well, but they cannot appear too often. Encountering a First One should be a finale for rp in any time period such that the characters could even say that they haven't seen anything like Big boss in nearly five hundred years. It adds context, and gives them cause for reflection on where they want to advance in future.

Yeah. In Trek most of the powerful beings have some sort of moral compass that prevents them from abusing less advances species. Even the Q mostly leave less species alone. And most beings that don't follow that rule ten to get reigned in by those that do (i.e Charlie Evans, or Tremane).

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