I like this. I'm never great at using magic into a setting, and it usually becomes either convoluted or tritely generic. Maddux makes magic seem a natural phenomena, and Skaldevale as a "geologically active" place, so to speak. It's beautifully simple, really. Nice work. Go to Comment
Maddux Systems (Geological/ Geographical)
The following conversation took place between Vartenedal smuggler and Skaldenvale wool monger after several drinks
"Listen here Mr. Uvtogova, I think you must be exaggerating, this Maddux thing really can't be that..."
"NYET, ya daft foo', ew dinna no unner stan, assniff da gawd, ave uh bug uh dice a 'ist uh orror in onsirs ta uvv up yer arse"
Translation from the Skaldenvale dialect to High Vartanedelian
"Not all you stupid clown, you fail to grasp how the situation resembles a God rolling dice and then consulting a list of horrors and monsters with which torment people.
Well there is the whole thing about perspective, who wrote this, who is theorizing? Does the average person think of this reality thing and this pool of magic? You seem to be writing very much with a GM voice: in as much as your are communicating in narrative and out of narrative at the same time. Forget that,
What I am geeked about is the whole metaphysics you have dived into here. We have a tool with which to ask questions in game such as what is reality? How would people behave if we had a clear definition for reality? The Maddux is real, the farmers tools come to life-that was real, but it was unnatural or it was the result of break in the fabric of reality? So is reality only what is expected or common? The Maddux is theorized to be a natural weak spot in the fabric of reality, which is made up of what we can experience.
So if somebody can experience more or less do they have different reality?
At any rate great stuff and fun idea to make a setting more dramatic. I am also excited to see and play with the effect this enviornment will have on the culture and philosophy of the people.
You gave a very good visual description of how to picture the Maddux -- seems like something that a professor would use to help his students conceptualize the strangeness in some magical college. Thinking of it like an unusual weather phenomenon is a good tactic. If it is a very long-running thing, I can imagine charity groups or government programs designed to provide "Maddux relief" for the victims of a bad "pop".
I can also imagine villagers making all kinds of crazy preparations besides boarding up their houses and businesses. Perhaps fencing in their fields, or leaving first-aid supplies in easily accessible places, or even tying all of their tools and sharp implements together firmly. Can you imagine a party walking into town during the middle of the storm of activity, wondering why the farmer is muzzling his cows? Go to Comment
Maddux Systems (Geological/ Geographical)
Nice idea. Nice organization. Maybe I should steal this idea for my own land of Hypoten (with a slight variation, of course. Perhaps Sylvia would be a good place for it?) because your land is geographically near my land. Anyway, I enjoyed the backstory of the coining of the term maddux Go to Comment
WOW. I want to play this, not read it. The alternate, smart ways to accomplish the different scenarios were awesome. Got a great feel of the land and town. Almost like watching a horror story unravel. Outstanding!
There may be grammatical errors and some a couple formatting mistakes in this post at the moment; I apologize and I will have a proper proof-read of it tomorrow, but it's nearly midnight here and I just got it finished and really wanted to put it out there, so here it is! :) Happy reading! Go to Comment
While I understand your point, Axle, the beauty of adding details to subs is that the GM can choose to ignore them and do whatever the hell he wants :D
I did have a few ideas still drumming around the ol' noggin in regards to mutations for some different creatures and the ecology of the entire place. I may expand on them and add them in appendix b. in the next couple days, where the GM has them at his disposal if he does so wish, but does not have to use them if he doesn't want to. In fact, i may make an appendix d. which will be all about the ecology of the place; and Strolenites may feel free to add their own user-submitted ideas to expand on the ecology.
I'm thinking things from small to big, from ants stripping away the skin of trees, to snakes with massive, tooth-filled mouths which have adapted to have a very human-like skin to hide amongst the branches above, waiting to snap down at humans walking by, to bands of rabid foxes which, individually are not an issue, but in large numbers will pose a very serious threat. Leave it with me for a bit and i'll add to this sub. Perhaps after christmas. Go to Comment
Thanks Axle - that means a lot considering this website is full of quality content!
As for your questions and comments; they are all valid, and I hadn't actually considered most of them. It goes to show that there is no end to the detail which can be put in a sub, especially when other people's views are put on it.
All of the content of this sub is flexible, depending how the GM would like to shape their game. If the PC's have the forethought to ask for a map, i'm sure they could find an ancient scrawling in a dusty library showing the former lay of the land.
I don't know that the natives of the Fields of Flesh would raid neighbouring towns, but then it's not unthinkable. More likely, the neighbours will have horrible tales of ferocious creatures and monsters seen along the border.
The cliche 'first-zombie/monster encounter' is indeed overused, and you may omit it at your leisure :D
I think the land would have a wild neutrality to it, and perhaps only a taste of evil. It is not Zalentoah, the 'evil' one making the changes, rather he is manipulating the power of another angel to make the changes. It would definitely be an abberation though - something against nature. Druids etc would feel like they have walked into a world gone mad.
Ghosts etc... i'm not sure. Maybe!
I suppose talking to the plants would be possible with correct spells etc... though all that would be heard is lunacy. The land itself has gone insane.
Mind control etc, will probably work just as well as it will on normal people.
Peat and coal. Oh yeah :D I actually hadn't considered it. Still, probably valuable commodities and worth a pretty penny to them.
Hot damn! I loved the poem at the beginning, and was really getting creeped out at the descriptions of the landscape. The middle section, describing the town and the interactions therein, was less energetic, but that's just an issue with resting-points in general. I especially like the second half, and the fact that the entire plot is seeded with extra ways to benefit from fighting smarter, not harder. The alternate ending was nice, and a good way to round it all out for those parties that wish to always have happy endings.
All in all, I was quite happy with this. My one possible complaint is that there wasn't much example given of altered wildlife, which doesn't jive with how thoughtful you were with the rest of the ecology. Go to Comment
Shadoweagle, I don't think I had a good point. You are right a GM can chose to take or ignore what they wish. I think you are also right giving GM other tools that they will have at their disposal will actually make things more accessible. I think your comment implies an excellent point, what makes RPGs special is that you can lift up a random rock in an RPG and the world goes on. RPGs perhaps have a depth that can't be reach in other medias such as video games or movies. I look forward to more details. And I will never accept or make the "more details will make this less accessible argument again!" Go to Comment
-Will the PCs be able to get maps or histories of the land prior to the blight from sources outside the Blight?
-What do the neighbors of the Blight think, have they been raided, by what
-The guy with his back turned to you eating noisely and he turns to reveal black dead eyes and fangs. This has been done to much, I'd have to change it if I used it this.
-What would a metaphysical investigation of the land determine, detect evil, or detect magic spell and if not a s spell system then what does astral shifting reveal, are their ghosts roaming around?
-So can you talk to these "plants" using magic or forestry abilities?
-How will these people respond to mind control or jedi mind trick type things?
-Can they burn coal or peat?
-The opened ended nature to the PCs is awesome, the sad innkeeper is my favorite.
After this point I got so caught up in the story, I stopped talking notes. This adventure is not exactly my style, and I say that not complain or annoy, but I hope that it will add weight to my personal observation that I have not read anything better than this at the citadel. This is so complete and well organized that I am really jealous. Thank you for writing this, thank you for the appendixes and so on. Thanks for pushing me to read it with your vote exchange. Go to Comment
The alternate ending for smart players was a nice touch, and I enjoyed the angelic backstory. I wonder at the ending, though. Azalea may have been freed in the end, but what of the other angels? I find it hard to believe that the party could break his chains without attracting the attention of some other powerful beings . . . Go to Comment