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Preparing to seek Players

Posted: Mon Jun 05, 2006 8:44 pm
by Myth
Okay, here's the situation. :)

I used to host games online all the time. At first I used WebRPG, but found the suckiness factor of WebRPG to be way more than I could choke down. So I looked around and found a MUD engine, and built my own engine, with most things automated. I spent about 400 hours developing, proofing, and enhancing it. I ran 1-2 groups there, weekly, for about 2 years. Had *loads* of fun.

But then for various reasons I had to quit. (I was married, I had to drop high-speed and regress to dial-up, etc.) So, I've been scratching that ol' Gaming itch by building a world. It's 3.5e, pretty extensively detailed, not many exceptions to the basic rules (most of those are minor race-oriented tweaks, like all dwarves getting DR 1 (any), elves take a 2-point hit to constitution but get bonus feats and spells, etc.) In short, I've built this setting while keeping in mind that I intend to take it online. I've also been playtesting it in fairly frequent face-to-face sessions. It's rearin' to go.

I still haven't named the setting yet, though... heh. I *hate* picking a setting name. It's the first contact anyone has with your world, and if it's lame, it can be *really* hard to overcome the initial revulsion. All the good names are taken... Athas, Greyhawk, Kyranath, Earth, Oerth, Urth, etc. If anyone has idears for a cool, intriguing, exciting name for a setting/world, they would be really appreciated.

I'm currently evaluating 2 platforms, deciding which I'll run with. Fantasy Grounds and Battlegrounds are my choices. If I go with Battlegrounds, then I'll be checking for interest on this forum. (Otherwise, if anyone wants to go to Fantasy Grounds... though I'm not *trying* to recruit anybody away from Battlegrounds.)

I've got a bare-bones website up for the new setting, if anyone's interested. I'll be getting more info up in the next few days, as well. http://portland.puremagic.com/~scott/new_world is the URL. Like I said... I don't have a name yet. When I do, the URL will change slightly, obviously. :)

Even if you're not interested in playing, feedback is more than welcome. I've got reams of material lined out, but it's all in Word format and I need to convert it to HTML and get it on my site.

And, once I pick a platform, I'll be recruiting Players. Here are my credentials. :)

I've been DMing since I was about 11. Of course, for the first 3 or 4 years, the games were wildly free-form... "You meet an Innkeeper... surprise, he's a dragon! He eats you! In his belly you discover a strange new world, and within 3 adventures, you've achieved Demi-God status, sporting enough magical equipment to take over all 7 Hells." That kinds of stuff. *sigh* Sweet nostalgia.

But I read lots of DMing self-help books (I'm not joking, how sad is that?) and played extensively for many years. (I'm 34.) I spend about 3 years running campaigns in the online shared world of Thardferr, which in its heydey boasted maybe 20 or 30 active DMs and hundreds of players. I've got countless hours of DMing experience.

My gaming style focuses on roleplay. I stick to the rules, because I've found that the rules are the skeleton of a game, and without 'em it's just DM whim... which generally sucks. My approach is to set the stage, organize the NPCs, and establish various ongoing plotlines... and then just run the stage. The Players affect things; I don't run scripted plotlines. Frequently, Player luck/stupidity/brilliance/insanity results in the game taking a whole different direction than I'd anticipated, but that's okay. I only build the campaign plotline 1 or maybe 2 sessions in advance, so that I can easily refocus if things switch tracks.

My biggest strength as a DM is my NPCs, I think. I build 'em deep. I try to present realistic, vibrant NPCs with history and personality and motivations and goals, from the hill giant holed up outside of town to the nefarious underworld boss. Often, the NPCs die... but they're not presented as expendible, no-detail collections of stats.

Speaking of death, PCs sometimes die in my games. I do try to arrange things so that a realistic challenge is possible... but if you go up against the Thieves' Guild and they get the drop on you, I ain't gonna save you. Bad luck can also get you killed... I've had a player die several times while raiding orc bands because the orcs got some critical hits he wasn't ready for. I believe that this keeps the game vibrant... you're not immune to death or catastrophe, and bad choices & bad luck can take you down even if the odds are in your favor.

The game ranges wherever circumstances take the group. From a city to a sewer to an icy mountain range, depending on what's being worked on by the party.

I do stress party cooperation. In a face-to-face game, an errant PC can be a problem. Online, an errant PC can virtually destroy the game. There are perfectly IC consequences for adventurers who turn on their buddies, and I am careful not to shield PCs from these consequences. And at some point, I simply ask counterproductive Players to find a different group. I dislike doing this, but to keep the game fun for everyone else, I've had to do it a few times in the past.

The flavor of the campaign is fairly low-power. If you design a combat-focused character, that's fine, but large portions of time will be spent role-playing, investigating, travelling, etc. In combat, you'll shine... but combat isn't a huge part of most of my campaigns. I also frown on powergaming... building every character to maximize his efficiency even though that's not the focus of his persona. It's okay to focus a fighter on fighting... that's their goal in life. :) But most Players tend to min/max their stats with a focus on AC and Attack/Damage, even though the characters might have a hard time justifying this. I prefer characters who are more realistic, and more justified. If your rogue spends a lot of effort on his longsword skill, you need to make sure that's part of his persona, and not just a way to achieve maximum combat prowess.

There is magic, of course, and it's not ultra-rare, or low-powered. It's just not commonly available or widely distributed. Things like holy avengers, staves of the magi, and vorpal swords exist, but they're nearly unique.

I'll post some adventure logs from adventures that have been going on for the last 3 years, in case anyone cares to get a glimpse of what kind of games I run.

That's about it. Hopefully I'll be back in a few days to see if anyone's interested in playing, and I'll monitor this thread in the meantime.

Happy Gaming,
Myth

Posted: Wed Jun 07, 2006 10:17 am
by GMBazUK
Hi Myth,

Ive followed the thread from FG concerning a comparision of Battlegrounds and FG...

Ive recently purchased FG and have downloaded the demo for Battlegrounds, and would either like to find a campaign/session to play in, or maybe just hook up with someone to test the software and get an introduction to roleplaying on the net.

If you'd like to arrange something, or consider me for a future campaign/session, let mem know.

Oh bye theway, having just read your message, I would agree with your DM/GM approach

Baz.

Posted: Wed Jun 07, 2006 12:14 pm
by heruca
Welcome to the forums, GMBazUK.

Posted: Thu Jun 08, 2006 4:20 am
by hjorhrafn
I'd be VERY interested in joining if you decide to run this. I especially like deep roleplaying spiced with deadly combats. :) I'll be happy to PM you if you'd like to talk details.

Thanks

hjorhrafn

Posted: Tue Jun 13, 2006 6:50 pm
by Myth
Hour Rafflin',

I've decided to run this through Fantasy Grounds, and we're running our first playtest tomorrow night, with the regular game hopefully commencing next Wednesday. If you're still interested, shoot me an email. dm_myth@hotmail.com

Anyone who's curious, or who just wants to check out the setting's (infant) website, take a peek at http://portland.puremagic.com/~scott/new_world

(No, I *still* don't have a name for the setting. *sigh*)

Myth

New World Name

Posted: Mon Jun 19, 2006 6:52 pm
by Myth
I've got to get this setting named. The 2nd session is on Wednesday and it's still "New World."

Here is my current list of names for the setting and the world:

Terrum Sanctus
Mircanum
Havalum Sanctus
Solus Sanctus
Mersalon

They're roughly in order of preference. Any input about this, anyone?

Law

Posted: Mon Jun 19, 2006 8:39 pm
by Jixxala
I like Terrum Sanctus.

It has been my experience that people are lazy and will shorten anything if they can. This will be shortened to a TS campaign.

Mircanum and Mersalon do not shorten well.

Havalum Sanctus becomes HS, and is kind of bland.

Solus Sanctus become SS. Normally not a good idea to go around telling everyone you are undertaking an SS campaign.

Terrum Sanctus just has a nice sound to it. My 2 cents.

Names

Posted: Mon Jun 19, 2006 9:03 pm
by Myth
Awesome input! Thanks a bunch, that's very cool.

I hadn't even considered the acronym effect. You're absolutely right.

Law

Re: New World Name

Posted: Tue Jun 20, 2006 9:58 pm
by Omnidon
Myth wrote:Terrum Sanctus
Mircanum
Havalum Sanctus
Solus Sanctus
Mersalon
I like Mersalon, but Terrum Sanctus is good too.

Mircanum would be a good city name.

Posted: Thu Jun 22, 2006 7:30 am
by Balesir
I agree on the favourite name, but it ought to be 'Terra Sanctum' (assuming you mean to use the Latin, here) since 'terra' is first declension and neuter. 8)

Posted: Thu Jun 22, 2006 5:27 pm
by Myth
Balesir wrote:I agree on the favourite name, but it ought to be 'Terra Sanctum' (assuming you mean to use the Latin, here) since 'terra' is first declension and neuter. 8)
I'm loosely basing in on the Latin, but just as a template. I don't want actual Latin... there is no Latin component to the world. But our culture thinks of Latin as "old, mysterious, first language". So, basing words on Latin instills our whole culture's ambiance onto the word, which is what I want. :)

Posted: Fri Jun 23, 2006 8:59 am
by Jixxala
Just got to thinking about it a bit more. I agree it is cool to have a latinish sounding name without it being true latin. (true latin only works if you plan on some kind of historical or alternate historical game)

Now I was just wondering ... What does "terrum sanctum" mean? If it means something like sacred world, then we are back to the lating thing. If it is from some forgotten elven dialect and means the kingdom of old king Terrum then that is cool. If the meaning is anything like the latin base, then people will try to "correct" it to be latin. If however if it is totally different, it can instill that "mysterious first language" feel and mean whatever.

Hmm that would be 4 cents now, I better shut up.

Posted: Fri Jun 23, 2006 8:50 pm
by Myth
Jixxala wrote:Now I was just wondering ... What does "terrum sanctum" mean? If it means something like sacred world, then we are back to the lating thing. If it is from some forgotten elven dialect and means the kingdom of old king Terrum then that is cool. If the meaning is anything like the latin base, then people will try to "correct" it to be latin. If however if it is totally different, it can instill that "mysterious first language" feel and mean whatever.

Hmm that would be 4 cents now, I better shut up.
You put in 2 cents extra, so I'll give you 2 cents' change back! ;)

I mostly like this name because it carries the connotations I want for the world, with "Sanctum." A sanctum is a hidden or holy place, which provides safety. That's exactly the overtone I want for the setting, because of various ancient occurances, prior to recorded history.

It will have roots in Draconic and Elven both, kind of a melding of the two languages. It will mean, "Holy land of Safety" or something similar to that (depending upon who translates it): pretty much what "Terra Sanctum" means in Latin.

Law

Posted: Fri Jun 23, 2006 9:32 pm
by Balesir
The meaning/concept of the name is cool, but I'm with Jixxala in thinking that if you use 'close to latin but not latin' some folks will just think 'that's wrong' and 'fix' it. Might be better to go for something not closely tied to any RW language, but with tones of what you want - exempli gratia "Plana Sanctar" (or something). Just a suggestion...

Posted: Fri Jun 23, 2006 11:31 pm
by Omnidon
ha this is why I liked Mersalon more.
You can always use Terrum Sanctum as some mythology or mythical location in the world.

Mersalon has a pretty good air of mystery about it, and sounds more of the sort of thing used for a world name. Simple but powerful, and not culture-specific.

Posted: Sat Jun 24, 2006 11:40 am
by Balesir
Omnidon wrote:Mersalon has a pretty good air of mystery about it, and sounds more of the sort of thing used for a world name. Simple but powerful, and not culture-specific.
Except of course that it translates (pretty loosely) as "sea room" (or maybe "sea lounge") :twisted:

This will always be a problem, of course - pretty much any (pronounceable) sequence of sounds means something in some language or other. My all-time favourite gaming world is Harn; something that turns out to mean 'urine' in German...

Posted: Sat Jun 24, 2006 11:44 am
by heruca
Balesir wrote:My all-time favourite gaming world is Harn; something that turns out to mean 'urine' in German...
LOL!

Posted: Sat Jun 24, 2006 3:32 pm
by Jixxala
Wow! and I thought marketing the Nova (a US car) here in latin america was stupid. (no va means no go) Then again the US has a restaurant chain called Chi Chi's.

I do agree though, any pronouncable combination will likely mean something in some language. Just keep your target audience in mind and pick something you like. Of course you may want to run a google to be sure it does not mean "urine" in some language. :P

Really any of the names is good, but I still like TS.

Name

Posted: Sat Jun 24, 2006 6:57 pm
by Myth
Thanks a bunch, everyone! This is exactly the kind of helpful discussion I was really hoping to generated!

I've chosen Mircanum as the "common name" and worked up graphics for that. I'll use Terrum Sanctus as the the "official name". I really appreciate everyone's input!

Myth/Law

Posted: Mon Jun 26, 2006 8:06 pm
by Omnidon
--Thread Split--
Tlichie wrote:definately looks good Myth and I expect I'll be interested in playing in your world :D I'm getting back into GMing Warhammer RPG, but have also started playing D&D 3.5 (I live in a small town and now that I'll be moving, a RPG group is forming...figures! Doing Living Greyhawk with them.)

I often like to create my own worlds/areas, both from the creative aspect and I don't have to worry about stepping all over or messing up an existing mythology. I also find it interesting to work with a character that may not be "ideal" for something, and figuring out how to maximize party effectiveness. I'll be looking over your website more later!

--Tlichie

Interested to play D&D ver 3.5 d20 using BG?

Posted: Sun May 13, 2007 5:11 am
by tommy357
GMBazUK wrote:Hi Myth,

Ive followed the thread from FG concerning a comparision of Battlegrounds and FG...

Ive recently purchased FG and have downloaded the demo for Battlegrounds, and would either like to find a campaign/session to play in, or maybe just hook up with someone to test the software and get an introduction to roleplaying on the net.

If you'd like to arrange something, or consider me for a future campaign/session, let mem know.

Oh bye theway, having just read your message, I would agree with your DM/GM approach

Baz.
Hi GMB,

I'm a new user of BG and want to test the features in BG. could you be the player in my game for D&D v3.5 d20 using BG and I will be GM for short adventure? I can be online for 1400 - 2400 (GMT+8 ) every day .
If you have interested, please PM me or email to me: tommy356@hotmail.com

or Add me MSN: tommy356@hotmail.com
or Yahoo Messager: tommy357@yahoo.com

Tommy :P