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  1. #381
    I like Halford's AND Graf's proposals. Perhaps there is a way to compromise? What if the Main Island City was on the mainland like Daunton and the islands existed off shore?
    "Its a secret message from my teeth!" - The Tick

 

  • #382
    How about...

    Seventy years ago the continent of Urith was hit by a meteor of unknown origin which shattered it seperating a portion of the land into a multitude of islands and all but seperating Allaria from Urith's main landmass. Gradually the peoples of EnWorld rebuilt their cities around what they now dubbed The Broken Sea.

    The Islands have been subject to many colonization attempts, but few have been succesful. Scholars theorize that some strange property of the meteor has rendered the surrounding area somehow out of phase with the rest of EnWorld. Sailors have returned with tales of Elven Kingdoms, Enchanters Isles, and legendary monsters. Try as they might the civilized races have failed to map the Isles time and time again.

    Though the properties of the Isles remain a mystery to the civilized races of EnWorld Devils were somehow able to manipulate the meteor's power to open a stable gate to their terrible domains. However, a band of five heroes were able to thwart their attempt and seal the gate. These heroes were never seen again and their fates remain unknown - many now worship them as demi-gods in their own right.

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    Back after a long absence, and feeling rather sheepish.

  • #383
    Quote Originally Posted by Halford View Post
    How about...

    Seventy years ago the continent of Urith was hit by a meteor of unknown origin which shattered it seperating a portion of the land into a multitude of islands and all but seperating Allaria from Urith's main landmass. Gradually the peoples of EnWorld rebuilt their cities around what they now dubbed The Broken Sea.

    The Islands have been subject to many colonization attempts, but few have been succesful. Scholars theorize that some strange property of the meteor has rendered the surrounding area somehow out of phase with the rest of EnWorld. Sailors have returned with tales of Elven Kingdoms, Enchanters Isles, and legendary monsters. Try as they might the civilized races have failed to map the Isles time and time again.

    Though the properties of the Isles remain a mystery to the civilized races of EnWorld Devils were somehow able to manipulate the meteor's power to open a stable gate to their terrible domains. However, a band of five heroes were able to thwart their attempt and seal the gate. These heroes were never seen again and their fates remain unknown - many now worship them as demi-gods in their own right.

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	EnWorld Trial.jpg 
Views:	17 
Size:	772.8 KB 
ID:	35820
    I like it. Out of curiosity what are you using to make the maps? Dunjini?
    "Its a secret message from my teeth!" - The Tick

  • #384
    Yep, good ole Dundjinni.
    Back after a long absence, and feeling rather sheepish.

  • #385
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Goblin King View Post
    TL;DR version: don't take things personal. I'm just some guy on the internet.
    Cool. Sorry if I overreacted.

    I wanted to pull this out of the (most excellent) discussion page covaithe created.
    Quote Originally Posted by The Goblin King View Post
    Also, what about making Island #2 have Tortuga on it?
    I like it. We'd need to finesse it a bit to explain why the five didn't do something about it. But that would provide a great counterpoint to the tolerance of the main island.
    Alternatively it could be a sort of dark mirror image. The main island gets a lot of wealth from the piracy trade, but they pretend they don't. So there could be friction and intrigue.

    Generally speaking I see no reason not to create lots of isles (if people want to). And poll it out in some fashion.

    Quote Originally Posted by covaithe View Post
    Graf, I really like the Transitive Isles writeup. Thanks for taking the time to do this; I think it's really helpful.
    Fantastic. I'm sure its still missing a lot, but it was an honest effort to move a step closer to our ultimate goal.

    Quote Originally Posted by covaithe View Post
    Noob question: I'm failing my INT check to understand the polls. Not the questions, they seem clear enough, but how to go about answering them. Is there supposed to be a way to answer from within the wiki page itself, or will they link to actual thread-based polls at some later time? Or should I just type something on this thread or some other thread that I haven't found?
    No you made your check. The point of having it on the wiki is that people can just change it.
    So if you want to add a question? Just add it.
    Is my wording lame? Change it.

    I -wanted- to do a non-binding poll, after getting feedback. Something specific to show people and get a reaction. If people like the fluff and get excited? Great.
    If they hate the fluff? Hopefully they get annoyed and come write something.

    Quote Originally Posted by covaithe View Post
    I added a discussion page for the Transitive Isles page with some comments / brainstorming. I'm not sure this is the best way to go about talking about this, but I thought it was worth a try.
    Doing it on the wiki is better I think. It's easier to go to one place and see people's comments.
    If you're responding to people you can preface your comments with a : (or several : to make a nested conversation. (it makes the text bigger... and I have no idea why. It doesn't do that on wikipedia does it?)
    The problem with doing it in a thread is that the last person really winds up with primacy and you usually forget stuff from more than a page or so back. (at least I do)


    Quote Originally Posted by The Goblin King View Post
    I like Halford's AND Graf's proposals. Perhaps there is a way to compromise? What if the Main Island City was on the mainland like Daunton and the islands existed off shore?
    Something like that works for me main island is deliberately undefined.
    Last edited by Graf; Thursday, 24th July, 2008 at 02:50 AM.
    Interested in playing 4th edition online? The Living 4th EnWorld Campaign is open! [character creation wiki forum]
    I am in an interesting period of my life; I will post in games that I run three times a week (M,W,F); and try to maintain obligations in existing games.
    ...disquieting...
    There was no end to his patience and endurance. He played day and night, his obsession was somewhat disquieting. It was less as if he were playing to dispel gloom or beguile tedium than as if he were giving himself up to the fangs of gaming devils."
    Kawabata Yasunari - The Master of Go

  • #386
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    Quote Originally Posted by Halford View Post
    Obviously the Imperium would be Romanesque as per Graf's suggestion, I always loved the former Hobgoblin empire in Eberron and prefer Hobgoblins as rulers as opposed the Eladrin who I personally would rather incorporate into the mystical twilight world of the Feywild.
    I haven't properly absorbed Halford's sketch yet. I do have a strong personal reaction to this.


    Imperium hobgoblins

    As you've mentioned hobgoblin empires have been done before, lots (kenzer did them, I think there are a bunch in Greyhawk).

    They work best in a setting like Eberron when they have a great, really detailed backstory to call upon.
    Empire of Dhakaan, which dominated Khorvaire and fought the invading overlords of Xorat to a bloody standstill over hundreds of years, buying time for the Gatekeepers to perform their rituals. Supplanted by humans and presumed to be primitive savages their hidding clans of warriors protecting ancient traditions rise to the surface warring with their primitive bretherin for the soul of the future of their nation.

    That's the apex of the ancient hobgoblin empire to me. Three different races with a shared tradition.

    The problem I see with trying to make hobgoblin + imperium is that whole system doesn't make a whole lot of sense.
    Hobgoblins are lawful evil oppressors; they're straight forward, their society is militaristic and focused with clear lines of command. Great warleaders of tremendous personal power drive their war engine unceasingly in the name of bloody gods. They live short, regimented and brutal lives of sacrifice and blood.
    You -can- drop that fluff (eberron did a fantastic job of keeping most of it and just flavoring it differently) but you're loosing out a bit. And many DMs/players want their hobgoblins/goblinoids to be hobgoblins and goblinoids.

    The imperium is, at least in principal, a (representative) democracy. The most powerful people are a bunch of old guys in togas who talk a lot in a big public room that ever citizen has the right to come and visit. In principal ANY citizen can be elected to the Senate.

    They have an official religion with lots of good gods and have state-sponsored paladins and clerics who go around smiting evil.

    When they invade they do so in the name of "bringing civilization to the darkness". The people they invade hate them, but they rule the outlying colonies with justice and fairness (which makes the unequality at the core of the system at that much more jarring).

    They are, as written now, an invading force that is disliked throughout the rest of the cosmos (land, world, whatever the setting will become) but they aren't a bunch of savage humanoids. And they aren't savage-humanoids-with-good-PR.
    They're actually a weird mix of some really good traits and really bad traits.

    Personally, if I were going to compare their roll with an Eberron element I'd choose Thrane.



    My bias against superheroic elves that don't do anything

    Here's my bias: Elves in 1e, 2e, 3e, tolkien, FR, Greyhawk,etc etc are basically superheroes.
    They're humans,

    • with magical powers
    • superior grace and intelligence
    • an elevated society who live in tune with nature,
    • are all physical beautiful,
    • are masters of arcane magic (usually the "original masters" who taught everybody else)
    • the best swordsmen ever
    • the best archers
    • the best woodsmen
    • ultrawise
    • and live forever.
    • they have a long glorious history
    • may come from some special magical land or live in a special magical land, and on
    • and on
    • and on


    They rarely have anything that could be called a negative trait and when they do it's not something I think of as being important (they're short, or their ancestors did something bad, or they have a low birthrate, or they're a little bit fragile). Or their race is dying. Not that they actually die, that would be lame, elves travel to some magical elf-only heaven instead.; usually some far off island. Occasionally, if you save the world you can go live with them. But if you're an elf (any elf) you get in to paradise-on-earth for free.

    And yet they never really do anything in a fantasy setting. They just sit around on their crystal thrones at the edge of their magical woods with their hand crafted talking swords and look beautiful. Occasially rare elf gets off their duff and does something (usually a PC, legolas, or a plot enabler, elron). Or one of their pretty little elf girls falls in love with a protagonist human (like half of all fantasy novels ever).

    I find this profoundly meh.
    4e tried to tackle this by "splitting" the elves.


    Elves: the roving bands of nature worshippers. I think is just a stronger concept; provided you're willing to make their nature worshiping a specific cultural thing. They live for ever and, as a group, they may be the most dangerous foe you could have, but they don't act as a group or get together or form nations because it's against their culture. (And they live for so long that their culture/religion/etc is very very strong)

    Eladrin: you have what's left; the arcane intelligent otherworldy superhumans (in the vein of the elves Aerenal from eberron).
    I get a sort of creepy alien vibe from them.

    I'd like it if we could have a group of eladrin who immigrated to the Imperium and dominated it. I love the idea of a democracy that is built on the rule of law and debate and high culture but isn't really democratic because these 300 year old jerks are camped out there.
    I love the idea that, while they aren't evil, being really really old and really wise makes you somewhat callous about the lives of "lesser" creatures.
    And, of course, the most callous people begin to accumulate the greatest power.

    I'm not saying that all eladrin come from the Imperium, but I would like to have it as a group in the world. They offer an interesting threat/challenge.


    That's just my take. I'm happy to have a hobgoblin empire, but I'd prefer to have the Imperium be more than "the Lawful Evil guys".





    I'll see if I can finesse Daunton and the Allerian league into the Isles.
    My only concern would be that people seemed to really want a non-developed/smaller setting. So I'll try to keep that flavor.

    I'll also put a little bit about the Tortuga, maybe GK can flesh it out more (or delete/fix/etc if I'm off)
    Last edited by Graf; Thursday, 24th July, 2008 at 02:53 AM.
    Interested in playing 4th edition online? The Living 4th EnWorld Campaign is open! [character creation wiki forum]
    I am in an interesting period of my life; I will post in games that I run three times a week (M,W,F); and try to maintain obligations in existing games.
    ...disquieting...
    There was no end to his patience and endurance. He played day and night, his obsession was somewhat disquieting. It was less as if he were playing to dispel gloom or beguile tedium than as if he were giving himself up to the fangs of gaming devils."
    Kawabata Yasunari - The Master of Go

  • #387
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    Included a rough tortuga sketch; with hobgoblins and monstrous races to help support those options for PCs who want them (but still want to be local).

    I also incorporated Daunton, at least a bit. I'm still struggling with the free alliance a bit. This is not a personal bias thing. I'm just concerned that it crosses the line into "(over)defining a settling".

    This, another comment from Covaithe on the talk page, kinda gets into the same (over)defining the setting thing.
    How big are the five initial islands? Rhode Island? Britain? Australia? I think we shouldn't go smaller than about Britain-sized. (Covaithe)
    I confess to have been thinking "Undefined but in the neighborhood of Rhode Island".

    If the community is enthused about developing from a small base then we should actually, to my mind, have a small base.
    What's beyond those hills (those waves)?
    Nobody knows, go write an adventure and show us.

    Saying, "OK. Here's the Northern wastes. And it stretches on for thousands and thousands of miles and it's just like this...." kinda seems to miss the boat. You're limiting what people can do without giving them anything to work with.

    If it's going to be undefined OOC then I'd like to have it reasonably be vague IC.




    Personally I'd like to start a non-binding poll of some sort soon. We've progressed fairly far with little in the way of direct feedback.

    (I'm partial to a poll that gets at the issues I brought up in my version of course, because I think it'd help deal with a lot of the issues I grappled with.)
    Interested in playing 4th edition online? The Living 4th EnWorld Campaign is open! [character creation wiki forum]
    I am in an interesting period of my life; I will post in games that I run three times a week (M,W,F); and try to maintain obligations in existing games.
    ...disquieting...
    There was no end to his patience and endurance. He played day and night, his obsession was somewhat disquieting. It was less as if he were playing to dispel gloom or beguile tedium than as if he were giving himself up to the fangs of gaming devils."
    Kawabata Yasunari - The Master of Go

  • #388
    Quote Originally Posted by Graf View Post
    Included a rough tortuga sketch; with hobgoblins and monstrous races to help support those options for PCs who want them (but still want to be local).

    I also incorporated Daunton, at least a bit. I'm still struggling with the free alliance a bit. This is not a personal bias thing. I'm just concerned that it crosses the line into "(over)defining a settling".

    This, another comment from Covaithe on the talk page, kinda gets into the same (over)defining the setting thing.
    I confess to have been thinking "Undefined but in the neighborhood of Rhode Island".

    If the community is enthused about developing from a small base then we should actually, to my mind, have a small base.
    What's beyond those hills (those waves)?
    Nobody knows, go write an adventure and show us.

    Saying, "OK. Here's the Northern wastes. And it stretches on for thousands and thousands of miles and it's just like this...." kinda seems to miss the boat. You're limiting what people can do without giving them anything to work with.

    If it's going to be undefined OOC then I'd like to have it reasonably be vague IC.
    First the starting city thing: From what I understand the reason for wanting to have a larger city is because of the wealth by level guidelines and the GP limit by size tables from the DMG. Orussus was too small to support such a large number of adventurers. As far as I can tell 4e has discarded the GP limit by size restrictions. I still feel that a city is best because it is possible for two people to live there their entire lives and never meet. Thats not really plausible in towns where everyone knows everybody else. Having the city be giant metropolis, such as Ptolus, would also be a problem.

    Second the defining thing: The problem was that one DM would say 'there is blank to the west' then another DM would say 'there is blank to the east and blanky-blank to the west'. They both couldn't be right. Overland travel times were guesses and varied from DM to DM. NOTE: I AM NOT INSULTING ANYONE OR CALLING ANYONE OUT. I DON'T EVEN REMEMBER WHAT HAPPENED THAT WELL.

    Anyway, the idea is that when a player asks, "how far is it to that city?" The GM can look on the map instead of making an off-the-cuff estimate and having the information end up buried deep in a thread.

    Another thing is that just because there is a dot on the map it needs more then just a name. We don't know who lives there or anything about them. The first players to go there will find that out.

    Also, a maps scale is important. If one inch is 5 miles then that map only covers a tiny portion of the world.

    Another thing that just occurred to me (lol, stream of consciousness) is that some of those cities in the free states might be ruined. Failed experiments that were abandoned for whatever reason.

    Quote Originally Posted by Graf View Post
    Personally I'd like to start a non-binding poll of some sort soon. We've progressed fairly far with little in the way of direct feedback.

    (I'm partial to a poll that gets at the issues I brought up in my version of course, because I think it'd help deal with a lot of the issues I grappled with.)
    I feel the character creation issue is more complex then that. I don't support a feat tax for certain characters. Partially because of player expectations and partially for fairness. The restrictions are arbitrary and makes the Judges look biased towards certain classes. In my opinion every class and race in the PHB should be available to players.

    The issue of allowing races from the Monster Manual is a separate problem. The phrase "if you give players an inch they will take a mile" comes to mind. Where do Judges draw the line? Gnomes seem to be okay but what about Drow? (just how many Good twin scimitar wielding dark elf rangers can there be?) Someone from Living Eberron remarked upthread that every other PC there is either a Shifter or a Warforged. What about races that don't have entries in the Racial Traits section? It is possible to reverse-engineer any stat block back to its component bonuses.

    On the one hand I want to just say "frack it" and ride the Crazy Train to Awesometown. But on the other hand I'm afraid of what might happen if the train derails in the middle of Shitsux Swamp.
    "Its a secret message from my teeth!" - The Tick

  • #389
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Goblin King View Post
    I still feel that a city is best because it is possible for two people to live there their entire lives and never meet. Thats not really plausible in towns where everyone knows everybody else.
    I agree.

    Quote Originally Posted by The Goblin King View Post
    Having the city be giant metropolis, such as Ptolus, would also be a problem.
    I assume you're saying "also not a problem".
    Metropolis = big starting area. No flexibility. Just saying.

    Quote Originally Posted by The Goblin King View Post
    Second the defining thing: The problem was that one DM would say 'there is blank to the west' then another DM would say 'there is blank to the east and blanky-blank to the west'. They both couldn't be right. Overland travel times were guesses and varied from DM to DM.

    Anyway, the idea is that when a player asks, "how far is it to that city?" The GM can look on the map instead of making an off-the-cuff estimate and having the information end up buried deep in a thread.
    Given aallll this anoyance and aggrivation I'm wondering why people are still locked into repeating it again...

    Lets be clear. You try to make a map and force everyone to stick to it and it's not going to work. Some of it will be accidental, some of it will be innocent (a player wants to make a new game, so their chracter happens to get halfway accross the contienent in three days).

    You can write it in bold and tattoo it one someone's arm and they're still going to get it wrong. Most people don't play dnd to sit around counting out inches and calculating travel times. Many good DMs just don't care about those sorts of details. (Homebrewers are a subset that obsesses about this, but if you ask 10 homebrewers how something should work you'll get 13 different suggestions).

    But nobody's gonna stick to your map.

    If I were a judge the last thing I'd want my job to be is "you're the guy who makes everybody follow details that don't help the story and that very few people cares about".

    Quote Originally Posted by The Goblin King View Post
    Another thing that just occurred to me (lol, stream of consciousness) is that some of those cities in the free states might be ruined. Failed experiments that were abandoned for whatever reason.
    Ruined cities, failed kingdoms, lost empires. These are details that I think no-one argues with.

    Quote Originally Posted by The Goblin King View Post
    I don't support a feat tax for certain characters. Partially because of player expectations and partially for fairness. The restrictions are arbitrary and makes the Judges look biased towards certain classes. In my opinion every class and race in the PHB should be available to players.
    As I noted in the talk page I agree with you. (more details there)

    I think we can put up a poll with more than one choice, though. Even a few that aren't perceived as being good. I don't think the "fixed map" is a great idea, but I'm planning on including the best poll questions about it that I can.

    The feat tax is a bad idea yes.... but given your feelings here

    Quote Originally Posted by The Goblin King View Post
    Someone from Living Eberron remarked upthread that every other PC there is either a Shifter or a Warforged.

    On the one hand I want to just say "frack it" and ride the Crazy Train to Awesometown. But on the other hand I'm afraid of what might happen if the train derails in the middle of Shitsux Swamp.
    it seems like you want some system.

    You have to start with your best idea, and then offer a bunch of alternatives and then see what people want (I think).

    We're not going to "present a perfect setting and get it approved". You go with what you have. I put the feat part in strikethrough yesterday. Give me a better suggestion and I'll pull it right out.
    Interested in playing 4th edition online? The Living 4th EnWorld Campaign is open! [character creation wiki forum]
    I am in an interesting period of my life; I will post in games that I run three times a week (M,W,F); and try to maintain obligations in existing games.
    ...disquieting...
    There was no end to his patience and endurance. He played day and night, his obsession was somewhat disquieting. It was less as if he were playing to dispel gloom or beguile tedium than as if he were giving himself up to the fangs of gaming devils."
    Kawabata Yasunari - The Master of Go

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    I have redone the poll, dropped a fair amount of transitive isles specific stuff and vastly increased the amount of character creation stuff.
    Interested in playing 4th edition online? The Living 4th EnWorld Campaign is open! [character creation wiki forum]
    I am in an interesting period of my life; I will post in games that I run three times a week (M,W,F); and try to maintain obligations in existing games.
    ...disquieting...
    There was no end to his patience and endurance. He played day and night, his obsession was somewhat disquieting. It was less as if he were playing to dispel gloom or beguile tedium than as if he were giving himself up to the fangs of gaming devils."
    Kawabata Yasunari - The Master of Go

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