Sunday 17 November 2013

My Island is the End of the World.

Apparently it is a thing to write about the island your guy is from in this pacific islanders game that is happening at some point. Because I cannot top patrick stuart's crazy train island of imagination, I will settle for stealing his format. Ha ha. 
A report on the island of Kuna Kuna.

"My island is the end of the world. I know this because I saw the gods leave us. 
They were the cause of all good things and all bad things, and so out of kindness and trust they went away. 
Now we make our own fate and for this we are grateful."


"When the gods left they broke their home to show that they could never come back. First they spoke to us through the ground. They told us to get into our long flat boats and to stay on the water until the moon was black. Those who would not listen stayed on the land, they made food and danced and mocked us on the sea. Some who listened did not like staying in their boats, they went and stood on the rock of children and the rock of man because they were safe upon the sea.

On the fifth night the moon was black, and the gods made their final dance. They drank deep from the fire mother and threw her entrails across her sides. They broke the earth father and stamped on his bones. They hooked grandfather sky and coughed out clouds of his smoky hair. And they blackened the sweet tree daughter and threw down all her children. The last to die was grandfather sea, he coughed and he heaved and he spluttered and he choked he sent his children away so they could not watch him die. The waves fled the island, and it took we who stayed in our boats with it. We washed away from the beaches, past the rock of children and the rock of man, and we waited on top of the high water.

We saw the whole island that night. The fire mother shattered and twisted, her fire all across the island. The tree daughter's trees burning, grandfather sky's clouds fallen to the ground in mourning, and we could see father earth's bones where they once were hidden deep beneath grandfather sea. The waves were shaped like a deep bowl, surrounding the Island that is the End of the World.

When they saw grandfather sea was dead his children rushed back in, tending to his lifeless body. We of the boats saw the people on the shore run, but they were crushed by the waves against the land. We of the boats saw the people on the rock of children and the people on the rock of man washed away. We flew fast like birds on top of the waves, over the land and the trees and the streams, until they laid us gently at the fire mother's feet with enough fish to feed a tribe for a long long time. 
Then they flowed away, healing the land. They took the heat from the fire mother's wounds, releasing the clouds that were trapped inside them. They took the oldest trees from the tree daughter's groves, leaving only the youngest and strongest. And they pulled rocks across the land to hide earth father's cracked bones, they are not for us to see."


"When the gods went away they left their bodies with us, and it is these we use to make spells. Their children are with us and so they help us.
Here are some of our spells. 

The tree daughter's children give us pieces of themselves, but take only those pieces they have left for us. Make a pile of them, then take a black stone of the fire mother's body and a grey stone of the earth father's bones and clash them together, the fire mother's children jump out into the wood where they can keep us warm. This is a spell of fire.

When your baby is born you must take it alone to the body of the fire mother. Only a mother can do this. There in the old home of the gods you must choose the fate of your child. Carve a secret symbol into the walls of a god's old chamber, do not tell anyone what you chose. This gives your baby the protection of that god's children. When you are close to death you may tell your child the secret symbol you carved those years ago. If your child is far away you must tell another, but that person must tell your child as quick as he can or bring calamity on both. This is a spell of oath.

Do not drink the waves of the sea or the waves that flow from the middle of the island. When grandfather sea died they cried and made themselves bad to drink. Catch a fish and hang it upright from a line. Pour water from the sea into its mouth, it will drink a lot more than it should. When it is dead cut off its tail and good water will flow out, bury the fish and thank it because it has eaten the wave's tears. This is a spell of water."


"Do not take away things that the children have not given you. As we cannot tell one wave from another, they cannot tell one man from another. What one man does, all men do. You must be careful.
The bones of the fire mother are sharp and hard. They make good tools for cutting.
The bones of the earth father are rough and soft. They make good tools for hitting.
The tree daughter's children are close to us, for we both grow upon the earth father's body. They grant us wood and so we keep them safe. They are angry that the fire mother burnt so many, and they are angry that the waves washed so many out to sea. They think slowly and decide quickly and do not understand why this is a blessing.
We take little, and leave much. We are grateful to the gods' children because without them we would be dead."

"Before the world ended we would fight. We would take our sharp sticks and our hollow shields and we would fight to drink from the waves that flow from the middle of the island. We would fight to be close to the fire mother and to the waves from the island and to the pool of the tortoise. The gods saw how painful it was for us to fight for them and so they left us.

Sometimes we fought people from other islands but they died when the world ended. Now we of the boats are the last people and fighting each other would be wrong."


"Fish are parasites. They eat the waves and they drink the sea's tears. The waves hate the fish and so we respect it by taking them away. It is ok to eat a fish or to cast the spell of water on it, but not both. We bury the fish that bring us water, and give the waves the bones of fish we eat.

Bugs are parasites. They eat the nectar and drink the sap of the trees. The trees hate the bugs and so we respect them by taking them away. You can eat the bugs if you want. In return the tree daughter's children give us sweet fruits and berries and nuts. If we have been bad and not taken away the bugs they are angry and give us less sweet things.

Sometimes the waves bring us a coconut, if you find one plant it in the ground where the sand meets the earth father's body, they are for our grandchildren's grandchildren, not for us. The waves have long memories. One day the coconut will grow up to be a big strong tree and be looked after by the children of the tree daughter.

A bird is a precious thing. It is the cloud's gift to us and should not be hurt. If the bird eats the tree daughter's bugs it means we have to work less hard. If a bird dies you can eat it but usually the bugs have their revenge first. Do not eat a bird with bugs on it."


"There are no gods, not any more.

The children of the gods help us and we help them. We are equal.
There are two seasons, sad and hot. In the sad season the clouds weep, in the hot season they dry their eyes. At the end of a season every tribe goes to the edge of the waves and casts a spell of fire and sends one man left and one woman right. 
The man and the woman pass each other and if the man is good and the woman is good they learn each other and then wander on. In the morning every tribe has a new man and a new woman. A man and a woman who met during the wandering are forbidden from recognising each other but we do not care so much for this rule.

There was once a tortoise in the place where the waves from the middle of the island gather. He made the water good to drink. When the world ended he was swallowed up by the earth father and the waves cried. Every stone from that pool is a giant tortoise egg, if you leave the island you must take one and not return until you know how to hatch it.
No one has returned yet but that is because we are the only people left in the world."


"The tattoos of the people are different now. 
It used to be that a child would take their father's object to the rock of children and bring a different one home. This would become their tattoo. 
When it was time for them to come of age they would take their childhood object to the rock of manhood and bring a different one home. This would become their second tattoo.

Now the rocks are gone and only we who saw the world end can keep our tattoos."

Thursday 14 November 2013

Death and Resurrection in a Weird World

So here's the deal.

There's this city called Fate run by this immortal guy called the Fated King.
This place is what happens when a guy who's seen a high fantasy city tries to build a high fantasy city using low fantasy magic.

No Create Food and Water, no wise and benevolent wizards with safe and socially acceptable magic, the clergy is made up of pedophile-charlatans, and the clerics might be drawing power from gods that don't even fucking exist.

Worst of all there's no Raise Dead. What's a wizard king to do?

Clone, baby. Beneath the city under several layers of awful dungeon are the clone-vats. Endlessly brewing and bubbling and tended by the cancer mage, each and every person who pays the baroque and convoluted taxes of Fate is down there, either bubbling away or flash-frozen and stored until they need to be reborn.
They're good at it by now. Half the system is automated and the other half is overseen by a small army of  scientist-magi with lab coats and clipboards, assisted by the malformed mutants known as the Gone Wrong.
The scientist-magi are well paid. They have to be. Not only for their silence, but because it is well documented that those who see their clone are overcome with the all-consuming urge to destroy it. Somewhat ironically, the scientist-magi who oversee the resurrection vats are the only people in the city who can truly die.

More on them later, for now let's talk Resurrection.
Clive you moron, you took him out too early.

Every clone is inhabited by their soul from an alternate timeline, one where they didn't die.
For the normal man unnatural death is so uncommon that there are countless timelines to spare. The average butcher, baker or candlestick maker is guaranteed an enormous number of timelines where they died peacefully of old age surrounded by their loving family. Clone simply has to slip a couple of timelines across and hook them back into this new body.
Hell, the timelines are so similar that the reborn commoner (and more importantly, the timeline itself) barely notices the difference. 

Not so for the adventurer. These absolute fucking idiots think that it is a good idea to go tromping off into dungeons, fighting hideous unnatural beasts and risking life and limb in the hopes of finding valuable knickknacks and handfuls of shiny junk.
Dragging an adventurer's soul into our timeline is a complete travesty. Clone just latches onto the closest reality in four-dimensional psuedospace, no matter how far away, and in most of the neighbouring timelines they died in the first fucking dungeon they stumbled into. 
So Clone has to drag their souls across from further away, and that means that time itself sometimes catches on and tries to snap back to how things are meant to be.

I guess what I'm saying is - no refunds.

What's gone wrong with my resurrection?

First get your dice out, higher level characters have more variation because they're dead in more timelines.

Level  --- Get this die out
   0                     d2
   1                     d4
   2                     d6
   3                     d8
   4                     d10
   5                     d12
   6                     d20
   7+                   d100

Then, roll on this table. Since higher numbers mean more timeline fuckery, these things apply.
On a 4+, always reroll max HP.
On a 6+, always lose a level.
On an 8+, always worsen your saves by 1d4.
On a 10+, always reroll your ability scores.
1.       We can rebuild him. Exactly the same!
2.       I feel… different. 1% chance that people you know find something about you deeply unsettling.
3.       Foreign memories. You seem to have got someone else’s memories mixed in with your own.
4.       Not like before. Reroll maximum HP.
5.       I’ve seen this... You get a one-time take-back for a decision you just made.
6.       Who are you people? Your memories are all fucked up and contradictory. Lose a level.
7.       I saw you die! Memories of random party member dying instead of you.
8.       The timeline is righting itself. All of your saves get d4 points worse.
9.       Trousers of Time. Scrying directed at you shows the wrong thing.
10.   Epigenetics. Reroll ability scores.
11.   Fionna and Cake. Vivid memories of a genderswapped reality.
12-19. Butterfly effect – humans get a new class, elves reroll their heartspell, dwarves gain random new lorebonds, other demihumans gain a random mutation instead.

20. Ontological Paradox. You remember something which never happened, a thing of importance about any one thing in the future. It can be anything from the solution of a puzzle to the exact nature of a magical item to the true nature of reality. One use only, use it at any time.
21-35. Borrowed time. Roll twice on every roll from now on and take the worst result.
36-50. Orcs never killed your family. Whatever it was that made you the murderhobo you are today… never happened. You have the skills of a level 0 commoner with a random profession.
51-60. It was Earth all along! You have memories from a very different dimension where the planet was ruled by bunnies or everybody was a tomato or something. As a coping mechanism you go dramatically and irreparably insane.
61-70. Hitler from another timeline. You escape at the first opportunity to become an NPC villain who’s not going to make the same mistakes this time around.
71-80. Shadow out of Time. Something came back… but it’s not you. In 2d10 days you split open like a chrysalis, and a Thing unfurls itself from within you. Roll as if it was Summoned, or possibly roll up an Esoteric Creature.
81-90. Slow Fade. People forget your name and misattribute your deeds as you fade from the timeline. Old foes yet live. Strangers look around confused when you talk to them then forget you were there. Friends stop inviting you to parties and forget your in-jokes and most treasured moments together. Only those who were closest to you will remember you, but even then only as “oh yea what happened to that guy anyway? Didn’t he used to come round here a lot? … man what was his name…”
91-99. Null. You no longer ever existed in any timeline. If someone mentions this character by name at any point in the future (in or out of game), their own character suffers this fate.
100. The One. Every other you is dead. You are the One and have absorbed the power of all your former lives! You get +2 levels instead of -1, pick your class, and roll new attributes on 4d6 drop lowest arranged to taste. If you die again, treat as Null.