26 Jan 2015

gridlore: A Roman 20 sided die, made from green stone (Gaming - Roman d20)
Working my way through The Babylonians I was struck by what a great setting Mesopotamia around the time of the Assyrian Empire would be. Because of the roots of RPGs, most fantasy settings are semi-coherent Medieval messes, with familiar tropes like castles, feudal states, and noble knights.

But in reality, by the time we reach the Middle Ages the world is fairly tame. Wild beasts have been eradicated, roads are patrolled, the land is divided up between noble houses and the Church. Sure, there are wars and crusades, but those don't make for good traditional epic adventures.

So let's look at Mesopotamia at the end of the 10th Century BCE. This was the end of the Bronze Age Collapse, a Dark Ages that wiped many states from the map. Assyria, though bent, never broke, and in the latter days of the 10th Century BCE  it began expanding, eventually conquering the known world!

Tell me this isn't a good setting. Ruined cities, dreams of empire, and in the game the collapse could have been anything. Dragons, orc hordes, someone summoned something bigger than their head . . . or any combination of events. The point is something really bad happened, and now the world is recovering. And you, you solider-of-fortune, are leading the way.

This would be an epic Pathfinder game in the tradition of Robert E. Howard. Ancient city-states, Sorcerer-Kings, lost cities, and the Zargos Mountains just packed with forgotten caves and dwarf-holds, all overrun now with monsters, of course.

The really nice thing is there are tons of empty space to be found. The Persian Achaemenid Empire isn't due for a few centuries, so all you have east of the Assyrian lands and the mountains are scattered tribal nations until you reach far India, which is ruled by evil giants with tiger heads and great fangs. There is great fun to be had with the existing tribal nations. For example, the Scythians are a pretty strong force around the Caspian Sea during this time. A lot of scholars believe they are the inspiration for the centaur legend, so let's embrace that! Oh, and there's another tribal nation coming off the steppes to make trouble . . . the Cimmerians. A few centuries early, but c'mon!

The Collapse could be the beginning of the end of my Great Dwarf Empire. Meanwhile, my tribal elves will be wandering far and wide, looking for allies against their hated foes.

Need to do the religions and some good maps, but I like this. A lot.
gridlore: One of the "Madagascar" penguins with a checklist: [x] cute [x] cuddly [x] psychotic (Penguin - Checklist)
01. Your Name:
02. Your age:
03. Male, Female, other, or not saying:
04. Favorite Film:
05. Favorite Song or Album:
06. Favorite Band/Artist:
07. Dirty or Clean:
08. Tattoos and/or Piercings:
09. Do we know each other outside of LJ?
10. What's your philosophy on life?
11. Is the bottle half-full or half-empty?
12. Would you keep a secret from me if you thought it was in my best interest?
13. What is your favourite memory of us?
14. What is your favourite guilty pleasure?
15. Tell me one odd/interesting fact about you:
16. You can have three wishes:
17. If it were possible would you want to hang out with me sometime? (Pretty sure I just asked everyone on my LJ out on a date..)
18. Which country is your spiritual home?
19. What is your big weakness?
20. Do you think I'm a good person?
21. What was your best/favourite subject at school?
22. What kind of cologne or perfume do you wear?
23. If you could change anything about me, what would it be?
24. What do you wear to sleep?
25. Trousers or skirts?
26. Caffeine or nicotine?
27. If I only had one day to live, what would we do together?
28. Will you repost this so I can fill it out for you?
gridlore: The word "Done!" in bold red letters. (Done!)
Done today:

  • Dishes.

  • Took out garbage and recycling.

  • Garbage bin to curb.

  • Helped with dinner prep.

  • Killed a bottle of Rosemont Shiraz Cabernet.

To be done tomorrow:

  • Clean bathroom before landlord arrives.

  • Laundry.

  • Do my circuit at the YMCA.


  • Didn't make it to the Y.

  • Drank way too much tonight.


gridlore: Doug looking off camera with a grin (Default)

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