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Conrad

Abraxas: The Lost Continent

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Abraxas: The Lost Continent is a setting that was developed by Dave Morris and Jamie Thompson, with art  by Russ Nicholson. It reminds me of the BRP setting Chronicles of Future Earth, despite it being set in the past.

 

"Abraxas is a lost continent from before the dawn of history. A place of high adventure, flashing swordplay, wild jungles, deserts of black sand, floating cities, classical temples, primordial animals, exotic wizardry and evil psionic aliens. When Abraxas finally sinks below the ocean, survivors will reach the mainland and seed the great civilizations of antiquity. SO WHO ARE THE HEROES? Mighty swordsmen, gladiators, statesmen, scientists, explorers, barbarians. And wizards who watch the stars to predict threats to their homeland and their ideals. Some – the noble champions of the five city states – are born to greatness. Others achieve it despite humble beginnings, and even Neanderthal heroes are possible. On the mainland, new young races of men (both Cro-Magnon and Neanderthal) are populating the world. Our heroes are destined to be remembered in legend as tutelary deities who guard and guide new cultures in the difficult struggle to survive. At the same time, they strive to confound the prophecies that say Abraxas itself is doomed. WHO ARE THE VILLAINS? Alien beings whose own worlds are dying have designs on the young Earth. Projecting their psyches across the gulf of space, they can influence the minds of weak mortals who worship these beings as if they were gods. The most powerful aliens such as the Churuk – and the Ulembi, whose home lies beyond the Coal Sack – are capable of physically manifesting themselves in our world. HOW DOES MAGIC WORK? Magic is part of daily life (like technology for us today) and comes in two types. The first is Thaumaturgy. In this period of the distant past, glittering rings like those of Saturn still encircle the Earth – remnants of a second moon that exploded. Adepts trained in the use of Thaumaturgy can draw down psychic energy from these rings. It is a form of magic that is powerful but unpredictable, based as it is on the solar-magnetic “weather” within the rings. The other main form of magic is Wizardry. It is derived from the combination of the Four Substances (Earth, Air, Fire and Water – the “elements” as they were handed down to the ancient world) with the Four Essences (Aether, Life, Ur and Death). Wizardry is typically less epic in scale than Thaumaturgy, but more reliable and controllable. WHY SET ROLE-PLAYING GAMES IN ABRAXAS? Abraxas is very far from the usual quasi-medieval style of fantasy. There are no orcs, goblins and dragons. Every animal and nonhuman creature is unique to the Abraxas world, making it highly brandable and distinctive. Many of the fauna of Abraxas are mutated versions of mid-Tertiary animals that have survived on Abraxas itself until the time of the game, around 35,000 B.C. The cities of Abraxas are wondrous metropolises, mighty proto-civilizations of the great cultures of history such as Egypt, Babylon and Carthage. This provides a core of familiarity within the fantastic setting."

The how and why of its development. http://fabledlands.blogspot.co.uk/2012/11/salvaging-treasures-from-sunken.html

The art and setting.  http://fabledlands.blogspot.co.uk/p/lost-continent-of-abraxas.html

The Kindle edition at Amazon. http://www.amazon.com/dp/B005FZ26MK

And at Amazon UK. http://www.amazon.co.uk/Abraxas-Lost-Continent-Jamie-Thomson-ebook/dp/B005FZ26MK

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I have a lot of time for Dave Morris' creations. He is a keen fan of Tekumel, and he wrote some interesting rules for that setting called Tirekelu. I also like Dragon Warriors and the world of Legend created for it (I'm currently playing in a Classic Fantasy game set there).

 

Abraxas was originally developed as an (over-)ambitious MMORPG in the late 1990s or early 2000s. It has a lot of interesting science-fantasy ideas in it.

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