Tears of Taija: Short List of Important Demons

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Psistrike
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Post by Psistrike » Tue Nov 25, 2008 3:13 pm

Some very interesting materials and their origins. Wonder if they are any unusual gemstones out there as well. :wink:

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Post by Unknown Soldier » Wed Nov 26, 2008 12:50 pm

Hrm. Golem scrap weapons and dragon armor it is.

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Post by MDSnowman » Sat Nov 29, 2008 5:07 pm

Phew, alright I've replaced all the ToT pictures I lost when AOL ate all of my picture files. By and large everything is the same, I did change pictures for Nora Engel, Braddock Lightmane, and Bridgette.

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Post by MDSnowman » Mon Dec 01, 2008 7:30 am

And finally our final Player Character.

No one can tame Makhpia Sha!

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Post by Unknown Soldier » Mon Dec 01, 2008 9:00 am

MDSnowman wrote: No one can tame Makhpia Sha!
You're so cheesy

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Post by MDSnowman » Mon Dec 01, 2008 9:02 am

Unknown Soldier wrote:
MDSnowman wrote: No one can tame Makhpia Sha!
You're so cheesy
Says the man with a power ranger Avatar

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Post by Unknown Soldier » Mon Dec 01, 2008 9:05 am

Touché

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Post by MDSnowman » Thu Dec 04, 2008 10:27 am

Design Diary #1: Inspiration

Okay, so Tears of Taija officially kicks off on January 6th at 9pm EST. All the players are set, they have characters, and as you can see I’ve been working my tail off building a deep fantasy world from scratch. So with the fun about to start I thought I should share what caused me to create this setting in the first place.

My very first exposure to table top RP was at the age of eight when my favorite uncle gave me the D&D Rules Cyclopedia, a bunch of miniatures, and some dice for Christmas. Since then my experience with table top RP has been almost entirely D&D-centric. As a result I know my fantasy RP tropes backwards and forwards. The writer in me bemoans them, and is comforted by them at the same time. All the same by the time I was a teenager I was bored to tears of endlessly copied and pasted Tolkien rip-off fantasy.

I believe this is why I was always drawn to D&D settings that were off-center from typical high powered fantasy fare. I loved Ravenloft for putting some bite into classic D&D monsters, and creating an atmosphere where heroes had reason to be afraid of the dark. I loved Dark Sun for turning Tolkien fantasy on its ear and creating a post apocalyptic style fantasy setting. I loved Planescape for embracing the sheer size of multi-verse and creating a pan dimensional culture that reinforced just how diverse a place the heroes would be trekking through.

As I grew older things began to change. D&D 3.0 burned THAC0 to the ground and replaced it with a simple bonus. I mourned the loss of some of the settings I loved. War Craft 3 came out and turned a classic fantasy trope on its ear (Orcs = Bad). White Wolf published the awesome Scarred Lands setting. Ravenloft rose and fell once again. Scarred Lands just fell.

By 2003 I had officially had it with D&D. 3.5 had come out with just enough changes to require me to buy the new books. Then Wizards of the Coast began to put out new splat books filled with recycled ideas from 3.0 and only lip service paid to new ideas. At the same time I grew increasingly disillusioned with how 3.X dealt with my favorite kind of characters (sword swinging guys). I bought every D&D setting that claimed to be low magic, but none of them ever really did it for me.

Now by this time I had M&M 1e, and had used it for superhero games. By the time 2e came out I had pretty much branded the character creation rules to my forehead I had converted so many characters for my thread. Somewhere between builds 1 and 250 or so I got good at it, go figure.

I began piecing together a fantasy setting sometime in early 2007. I wrote the basic premise (the first real post on this thread) back then, and then stalled. I couldn’t muster the desire to actually build up a fantasy setting using traditional fantasy rules. Fast forward more than a year and I’m running MDParagons when I’m talking to a friend of mine about the premise to the setting, she liked it. Now I value this woman’s opinion quite a bit so I felt bad about kind of tossing the idea aside. So I thought on it and decided that I should expand on this unnamed setting, and that I should do it with Mutants and Masterminds. It was a system I knew like the back of my hand, and I knew from first hand experience that a character devoted entirely to swordplay could statistically go toe to toe with a magic slinging badass.

M&M also let me put shades of grey between those two fantasy extremes, the fighter and the wizard. Suddenly I could fit in everything from the strangely skilled child of destiny to the hedge wizard who just knows one or two tricks. Suddenly I realized, creatively, that the walls had come down and the possibilities stretched out as far as I could see. Suddenly I could add my anime and video game influences to what I was working with because I wouldn’t need to break the system or create a mini-mechanic to deal with every little original idea.

With my creative switch firmly in the on position I moved forward and began building a world.

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interesting behind the scenes look

Post by Daret Vox » Fri Dec 05, 2008 2:54 pm

MDS,

Some nice insights into what brought this top notch post into being. World creation takes equal measures of the creativity to make things interesting and the mental endurance to keep churning it out. I'm glad that you appear to have ready access to both.

With that aside, what downsides if any do you see to using MnM 2e for your fantasy campaign. Any areas where the system is in your way or any unintended consequences that you anticipate having to deal with?

DV

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Post by MDSnowman » Fri Dec 05, 2008 3:57 pm

Most of the things I've learned to be careful of in M&M2e is general to the system and not to a fantasy setting using the system. You always need to watch the more flexible powers, variable structures, create object, transform, and the like. Give those powers to a clever player and you will have a nightmare waiting to happen. I've found that you need to keep tight reigns on those to prevent abuse.

For example I'm going to keep close track on the animals our Orcish friend meets and is thus able to take a peice of for her power. Before I let the player mimic an animal he and I are going to have to agree on a power set for that particular animal.

But that's just me, I can be a control freak, that's why I'm a GM.

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equipment questions

Post by Daret Vox » Sun Dec 07, 2008 1:34 pm

How do you plan on handling equipment and devices that might be found in your campaign?

While the MnM standard approach for equipment and devices seems to work well for the superhero genre, the fantasy or post apocalyptic genres often involves more looting of equipment/artifacts. Would characters pay for these acquisitions out of their character's power points if they intend to keep them long term or will they be handled separately from the character's power points?

Keep up the good work.

DV

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Re: equipment questions

Post by MDSnowman » Sun Dec 07, 2008 4:23 pm

Daret Vox wrote:How do you plan on handling equipment and devices that might be found in your campaign?

While the MnM standard approach for equipment and devices seems to work well for the superhero genre, the fantasy or post apocalyptic genres often involves more looting of equipment/artifacts. Would characters pay for these acquisitions out of their character's power points if they intend to keep them long term or will they be handled separately from the character's power points?

Keep up the good work.

DV
Well I want to plan what my heroes get ahold of, and encourage them to save power points to pay for it. For example I've told Jade's player that I want to give her one of the Impregnator's swords. So when I hand out Power points Im going to convince her to save some for the sword when it makes its way into the game. Meanwhile equipment I'll let people use for one scene without paying for it... devices I'll be more stingy about, or make a lot of use of the resistricted feat.

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Re: equipment questions

Post by Unknown Soldier » Mon Dec 08, 2008 7:39 pm

MDSnowman wrote:devices I'll be more stingy about, or make a lot of use of the resistricted feat.
And there go my plans for killing folk with their own weapons.

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Post by MDSnowman » Fri Dec 12, 2008 1:57 pm

Organizations #14

Name:
The Silent Knights

Nicknames: League of Assassins, The Shadow Brotherhood, Death Dealers

Symbol: A Black Silk Mask over a Curved Sword

Structure: Clan based

Description: Many knightly orders uphold a moral code of one kind or another. The Silent knights’ code consists of one virtue, loyalty. Originally a group of Shadow Fist masters from the old empire they retired to parts unknown and refined their arts, integrated weapons, and stealth. They reappeared before the empire offering their services. The Silent Knights were immediately put to work throughout the empire as spies and assassins. Entire families of Silent Knights were stationed in other countries where they blended in and put down roots. When the empire crumbled the Silent Knights were plying their trade in secrecy all over Darkon. With the Empire gone the disparate clans of Silent Knights offered their services to the kings and queens of their new countries. They do so to this day. The only exception is the clan of Silent Knights operating in Saltash. This clan did not offer their services to the nobility of that kingdom and instead operate secretly as mercenaries.

Sample NPC: Gregoire Fortino

Name: The Church of the Eternal Smith

Nicknames: Smiths, Mountain Dwellers, Elemental Scions of Fire

Symbol: Four Swords facing North, South, East and West, hilts pointing inward.

Structure: families

Description: Deep in the Dragonspine Mountains in huge beautiful terraced cities built of granite and wreathed in clouds there lived the Elemental Scions of Fire. These people were exceptional engineers and black smiths. They worshipped the fire of the nearby volcanic mountains and the transformative nature of fire and heat. They saw the creator of the world as a smith of extraordinary skill, and as such strived to live in harmony with his great creation. These reclusive people were widely recognized to be the most powerful fire adepts on Darkon. Their society slowly fell apart due to a number of reasons; some fire adepts began worshipping fire based monsters and harming others leading to the leaders of this movement being exiled, the influx of the Shadow Boxers seeking to drive out non-believers, and Goblin refugees who were looking for new homes. The Smiths were forced from their mountain top cities and were dispersed all over Darkon. Today the only sizable group of them is found in the City State of the Sleeping Giant where they practice their faith and magic privately to avoid persecution.

Name: The Fated

Nicknames: The Seers, the Doomed, The All Seeing

Symbol: Three open eyes

Structure: None

Description: There are numerous ways to see the future; a rare adept talent, spirit visions, time travel, messages from other dimensions and more have all been recorded as happening. The one thing these methods have in common is that they change those that spy the future. The event tends to drive one to extreme actions, either to preserve time as it was witnessed, or to change it. These rare seers, the fated dedicated their lives to the future like men and women obsessed. They can be found almost anywhere in Darkon doing one or another strange thing sure that it will either preserve or change the future. They’re not an organization in the strictest sense, but it is believed that they have all glimpsed some facet of the same future and are planning accordingly.
Last edited by MDSnowman on Tue Feb 17, 2009 5:29 pm, edited 3 times in total.

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Post by MDSnowman » Fri Dec 12, 2008 2:23 pm

Organizations #15

Name:
Harriers

Nicknames: The Lancers, the Acrobat Phalanx, The Sand Knights

Symbol: An Ornate Yellow Spear

Structure: Military Order

Description: In the land of the Golden Sands there is a secluded monastery that trains some of the most feared warriors in the world. Within that monastery young warriors train to become Harriers, warriors with nearly supernatural speed and leaping abilities. The Lancers have supposedly existed for thousands upon thousands of years have not changed their training regiment in all of that time. The Harriers often leave their monastery for long periods of time and explore the world as part of their training process. Their origins of the order are in question. Those that know the Forest Walkers who follow First Stag recognize their signature weapons and foot speed, but it doesn’t explain their acrobatic talents. Other suppose that no one can move like that without air adept training of one kind or another. The fact that the Harriers are very choosey about who they train does nothing to clear matters up.

Name: Skull Crag

Nicknames: The Hobgoblin Horde, The Violet Menace, Stone Skulls

Symbol: A Humanoid skull floating over a mountain on a purple field

Structure: Clan

Description: The largest clan of Goblins to migrate to the Dragonspine mountains had been a mighty clan on the plains before being driven off by an army of mercenaries hired by the merchants of Gainsborough. The clan found its way to a huge city abandoned by the Smiths decades before. Their attempts to make a new life in the city’s ruins were stopped by an angry mage, and a horde of summoned demons. This mage, whose name is not recorded, or spoken by the Goblins, came to understand the potential use of these Goblins and used her magic to enslave the clan’s greatest warriors. She declared herself the Goblin Queen and allowed the Goblins to settle in the city. In turn the goblin clan took a new name in honor of their new mountain home and the skull shaped rock the Goblin Queen built her citadel upon. The Goblin queen has pulled the strings on her minions for decades and has forged them into the largest, most organized, and fearsome army in the Eastern Reaches. None know when or how the Goblin Queen intends to strike, but Gainsborough and the surrounding towns know it is only a matter of time.

Name: The League of Scholars Errant

Nicknames: Traveling Bookworms, Explorer’s Legion

Symbol: A dusty back pack with an open book on top of it.

Structure: Loose confederation.

Description: Many scholars making their lives in huge libraries reading the works of others, and drawing conclusions from them. Other, more ambitious, scholars leave their libraries and look for knowledge wherever it can be found. Almost entirely self funded these traveling bookworms look for lost cities, mysteries of the past, and just learn about foreign peoples. The one thing that these scholars have in common is an insatiable lust for knowledge and a habit of ending up in the least hospitable places the world has to offer. The League is almost entirely funded by the selling of the group’s collected travelogues to adventurers and travelers alike, the profits of which are overseen by elder explorers too infirm to be out in the field. The league is best known for their relationship with adventurers. Adventurers have a habit of buying their travelogues and the scholars, the wise ones anyway, often hire adventurers for their own protection.

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