Master Mines

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Change Sought

So it’s been a while since I’ve done anything with Grand Tour, and at this moment I don’t see that changing. I like the idea, and I think using PTA as a springboard for hacking out a system for me to use is a good thing to do, but it seems every time I sit down to lay down plans I draw a blank. I think I need to let this one simmer for a while in the dark corners of my mind, let it solidify some more before I can handle it and mold it. That leaves me, though, with a void to be filled.

I’ve two projects that I could tackle now:

  1.  Eldritch Rangers – this is a setting-like thing that I am developing with a co-writer as a project for Highmoon Media Productions. The basic idea is “Power Rangers vs. Cthulhu (if the Power Rangers had been created in the 1920’s by Nikolai Tesla, Alister Crowley and the Maharal of Prague, creator of the Golem).” It’s Pulp-Anime and it’s supposed to make you cringe the way you did when you read that description. We originally were going to work it as a mini-setting for d20 Modern, but after a chat with Fred, I will also be doing it as a setting for Spirit of the Century. The d20 Modern part is cake for me, and my co-writer, Scott Carter, has that part down pat for the most part. The FATE part is what I would focus on here, because, as light a system as FATE is, it is still crunchy enough to demand serious attention when creating new rules and fiddly bits.
  2. Unnamed Ancients Project – Anyone who knows me or follows my HMP product releases knows I am very much into historical gaming, and especially into Ancient World games/settings. I publish Targum Magazine, and through that I get to indulge my love for the ancient world, albeit in someone else’s sandbox, be it Green Ronin’s Mythic Vistas settings, or general d20. For a long time now I have had the itch to put out my own Ancients RPG, and while for a time I though to do it d20, then I also considered True20 (not an option I have yet tossed aside), I now also consider doing a new system. Or parts of a system. Because the thing is that aside from the cool Ancient World ass-kicking-adventure parts that would be a part of the game, one of the concepts I am most interested in developing is the idea of Civilization as a game mechanic, that not only would this game allow you to play a warrior in Biblical Israel, Mythical Greece or Imperial Rome (almost like 3 separate games in one), but also allow the option of creating a Family that starts in, say, Mesopotamia, where you play this one character, go and have awesome sword-and-sandal adventures with him, then you can flip into a macrocosmic level, trace the character’s Family through a couple of centuries until you reach a new era where you want to drop down into the microcosmic level, and play there again, and so forth. So, to give an example, you could play this guy named Abram/Abraham that starts in Ur-kasdim in Ancient Mesopotamia, go on a few adventures with him in the micro level, flip up to the macro level, develop the Family for a few generations until you reach the Hellenistic era, flip down to the micro again, and play this other character, Judah Maccabee (a descendant of your previous character), in a new series of adventures.

By sheer word count above, one might be inclined to think option #2 seems to excite me more, but they both excite me equally; it’s just option #1 is a lot more defined in my head than #2, and I needed to explain more here to share the idea.

So, I will think about this and make a decision. But I also would welcome very much your input.

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December 17, 2007 - Posted by | Games in Development, Grand Tour

10 Comments »

  1. […] Originally posted at Master Mines. […]

    Pingback by [Grand Tour] Change Sought - Highmoon’s Ponderings - DMPerez.com - The Domain of Daniel M.Perez | December 17, 2007 | Reply

  2. I guess one question to ask, Daniel, is would your co-writer appreciate you openingly developing even the FATE portion of your Eldritch Rangers project here? Is that a consideration?

    Also, yay ancient world/mythic gaming! For some reason, your game reminds me of people talking to me about Pendragon, and even some of Wick’s Houses of the Blooded (at least, from what I heard on Sons of Kryos recently).

    Comment by Ryan Macklin | December 17, 2007 | Reply

  3. To answer the first part, no, Scott would not mind. If I end up doing that, I’d bring him here to watch/contribute as desired. That aside, Scott, up to now, is not involved in the FATE part of the setting, only in the d20 Modern. Though he could be turned to the Dark Side…

    As for the second, I’ll have to check Pendragon, but you picked up rightly on the Houses vibe, at least as I understood it from that interview, as well. I also got some ideological inspiration after listening to your recent interview with Luke Crane, where he talks in depth about Burning Empires’ micro/macro dichotomy. I don’t have BE yet but at least from the descriptions, I am thinking of something along those same lines, where actions taken at the micro level affect how you can develop the generations at the macro level, and vice-versa, where actions taken at the macro level affect some character choices when you flip down to the micro level again.

    Comment by Daniel M. Perez | December 17, 2007 | Reply

  4. To answer the first part, no, Scott would not mind.
    Cool. I figured I would do the whole “explicit social contract” thing.

    I should say that I’ve never actually read Pendragon, just heard friends talk about old games of it. As far as BE goes…while I wouldn’t actively discourage getting the book for research purposes, the writing is really wrapped up in its own paradigm and it is a massive tome. I’d be happy to talk with you about it, with respect to your idea, in addition to whatever other research you’re looking to do.

    Which is really my way of saying: Hey, I’m down with a Skype call about design geeking sometime. Anything to help out my fellow Master Miners.

    Comment by Ryan Macklin | December 17, 2007 | Reply

  5. Daniel,

    Of the two, the mythical game really speaks to me more and I am getting that others (at least Ryan) feel the same.

    You could also finish editing my Social Combat D20 game if you got really bored…:P

    Comment by commondialog | December 18, 2007 | Reply

  6. Ryan, I may take you up on that; I’ll let you know.

    And just to clarify, this is aside from work (HMP) stuff, this is more personal design project.

    Comment by Daniel M. Perez | December 18, 2007 | Reply

  7. I’m liking #2. Dynastic plot development. It seems like in a game like this the story would be held together by the conflict, not necessarily the protagonists. Its an interesting concept

    Comment by jhimmelman | December 18, 2007 | Reply

  8. Jeff, you hit on something there.
    During this time of the year, we are reading (and about to finish this coming Saturday) the book of Genesis as part of the yearly reading of the Torah. As I have thought more about this idea, I can tell you that, if you look at Genesis, pretty much all the way from Adam, but specifically from Abraham down to Joseph, right there you have a very good example of the kind of play I want to recreate. I’ll explain this out more in a later post.

    It seems #2 is pulling way ahead…

    Comment by Daniel M. Perez | December 18, 2007 | Reply

  9. Daniel,

    I’ve actually played both Pendragon and Burning Empires, so if you’ve got specific questions, I can help answer them.

    And wow would some Abrahamic roleplaying be fun. (In some ways, I can’t believe I just said that.)

    Comment by ptevis | December 18, 2007 | Reply

  10. Daniel,

    I’m all about your Ancients project. The family aspect is interesting, too.

    Comment by orklord | December 20, 2007 | Reply


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