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Author Topic: Chaotic Prophecies  (Read 1998 times)

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Offline Shadoweagle

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Chaotic Prophecies
« on: April 29, 2004, 06:31:45 AM »
Imagine a world, where prophecies were common. At any one point, there is a prophecy in play which could alter the world. Prophets are revered people, both feared and loved for what they may bring up. The prophecies come to prophets in jumbled flashes from the very gods, which make the prophets write the verses down in a daze. Prophets may take weeks or even months to write a single verse, and they will not fast not eat during this, using the power of the connection with the prophecy to sustain them. Due to the strain on their bodies, prophets often die young, around thirty-five. For thousands of years, these prophecies came, then were fulfilled.

Until one prophecy, failed.

The hero died! The people did not rally with him! The enemy succeeded! Anything could have happened. But the second the words of the prophecy failed, the entire world, knew it.

The sky, once a lush blue, faded to a grey, then tinged with crimson. the earth shook; ground weakened and altered. Marshes appeared where deserts were, and deserts formed where lakes once pooled. Trees began to wilt and die, and the magma core was cooling. Because the gods words failed, the words that the gods spoke to create the world followed unison and also failed.

Now, the world is dying. Fell beasts are ripping their way into the dimension, now that the fabric of the dimension is unravelling. Magic becomes more and more difficult with each passing day, until lighting a candle is a great effort in itself!

What to do?
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PC's must find out what prophecy was broken, and they must therefore attempt to fix it. Either by killing the 'villian' in it, finding a certain artefact or whatever other means necessary. But they must be careful! For if they skip a beat on the prophecy, they may ruin any chance of completing it in the first place. If they complete one verse before they complete one prior to it, the prophecy will have no hope of ever bieng regained.

As a final measure, if all else fails, the spirit of the prophet who wrote this can be called upon to give advice or remedy it. Prophets can only be summoned on the top of this hill/with these rare ingredients which must be found/at a certain alter at a certain time of day or night/by a certain magician who lives in the middle of a forest etc... etc... etc...

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But what of this: A second, less well KNOWN prophecy says that Finally, a prophecy shall be broken, and this will bring the desctruction of the old, impure world, and allow humankind to enter true paradise. The PC's, by trying to FIX the prophecy, are unwittingly destroying humankinds only chance at paradise! :o

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What if a foe of the gods, a demon or something of the like, decides to get back at the gods by destroying their handiwork (their universe) by breaking a prophecy, since it does not have enough power to destroy the gods itself. This means that the PC's will have this demon and whatever minions it has, trying hard to stop them fixing it!

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Feel free to post your suggestions, additions or thoughts :)
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Offline Shadoweagle

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Chaotic Prophecies
« Reply #1 on: April 29, 2004, 06:42:06 AM »
Another idea for the same type world - the PC's mission is to protect a prophet while he writes a prophecy (such a thing could take hours, up to months). Something wants to stop him from writing this prophecy, for some unknown reason.

But, if they look hard enough in already written prophecies, they will find this:

The group fends away the fiend
Whilst futures are written by the scribe.
The fiend wants the world to live
The scribe writes it is destined to die.

This prophecy is the prophecy about the prophet that wrote the prophecy about a prophecy bieng broken :D
If you get what I mean ;)


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This is a very flexible RP in that the DM can create any prophecy he likes for it.
Lazarus Lightward, Elite Diabolist of the Brotherhood - Level 3 Occultist
Deathpriest Noxx, Herald of Eternal Silence – Level 2 Necromancer
STR: 2 | END: 2 | CON: 4 | DEX: 2 | CHA: 12 | INT: 13


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Offline manfred

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Chaotic Prophecies
« Reply #2 on: April 29, 2004, 06:46:23 AM »
Maybe, the prophecy was a bit too long, or too important? So the prophet simply died before he could complete it?

The mission could thus be to help him to finish it. Pity that his ghost his immaterial and cannot hold the pen (and he of course must write it down personally...).
Do not correct me, I know I am wrong.

Offline Shadoweagle

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« Reply #3 on: April 29, 2004, 06:50:44 AM »
Nice. What then? Perhaps the prophet must be ressurected. Or a pen divised that can be held by insubstantial hands. Of course, all within a time limit ;) for after all, the world IS dying!
Lazarus Lightward, Elite Diabolist of the Brotherhood - Level 3 Occultist
Deathpriest Noxx, Herald of Eternal Silence – Level 2 Necromancer
STR: 2 | END: 2 | CON: 4 | DEX: 2 | CHA: 12 | INT: 13


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Offline Danu Raven Nightshade

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Chaotic Prophecies
« Reply #4 on: April 29, 2004, 06:54:41 AM »
Sounds good! A bit like MkRayearth though...
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Offline Shadoweagle

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« Reply #5 on: April 29, 2004, 06:16:35 PM »
Thankies ;)

I havent seen Magic Knight Rayearth personally, but from the review I looked up, the only thing similar is the world dying, and people trying to stop the world from doing so - thats fairly broad :)
Lazarus Lightward, Elite Diabolist of the Brotherhood - Level 3 Occultist
Deathpriest Noxx, Herald of Eternal Silence – Level 2 Necromancer
STR: 2 | END: 2 | CON: 4 | DEX: 2 | CHA: 12 | INT: 13


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Offline Strolen

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Chaotic Prophecies
« Reply #6 on: April 29, 2004, 08:46:24 PM »
Wow, that is a pretty good campaign builder!!!

The hard part is coming up with the prophecies...although there is another thread with a few isn't there?

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Offline Shadoweagle

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Chaotic Prophecies
« Reply #7 on: April 29, 2004, 08:59:45 PM »
Lazarus Lightward, Elite Diabolist of the Brotherhood - Level 3 Occultist
Deathpriest Noxx, Herald of Eternal Silence – Level 2 Necromancer
STR: 2 | END: 2 | CON: 4 | DEX: 2 | CHA: 12 | INT: 13


Strolenite Relic, resurfaced.

Offline MoonHunter

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Chaotic Prophecies
« Reply #8 on: April 30, 2004, 03:01:50 AM »
I am a fan of time travel, alternate history, and such.  It is obvious that something from outside the timestream has disturbed the "wa" or tao or way of the world. There must be something transdimensional or more likely transtemporal travelling here to screw up such prophecy.  (Since the prophecies are DESTINED to work in this world, something from elsewhere must have influenced it?)  Being from beyond the pale, they are not seen in the prophocies.  

What could of happened was someone wanted to thwart their personal prophecy, so they travelled back in time to undo the things in the past that would stop them.

You could kill the prophet appropriate, but then someone else would probably just give the prophecy.  

If you kill the person who originally stopped you when they were small, someone else might be able to weezle into the prophecy by meeting the conditions of it.  Thus when you return to the "present", your conditions have not changed, just the individual who stopped you changed.  

But you can killed the people destined to train the people who will stop you... Thus they will be less prepared when they face you.

You see where this is all going. If you change a few things in the past, with your knowledge of the future and future prophecy,you can be in the right place, at the right time, to be crowned king or something.  

The only people who can stop you have either not been born yet OR are those prophociesed to stop you who you have probably weakened by changing their present by messing with their past.

So the prophecies have failed.  There must be someone from the future, with future tech/ magic and a book of older prophecies, orchastrating these changes.  They and their minions will change the world to meet their image.
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Offline manfred

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(How about a change of the setting?)
« Reply #9 on: May 10, 2004, 01:36:28 AM »
Personally, I don't like time-travel a lot, but exactly this thing mentioned got me thinking on another route.


The most important question is: "Why are some prophecies so important for a world?"

Sure, it was explained, and it is fine that way. Godly words have created the world, and if they failed, the world is failing too.

But why is it necessary to make always new prophecies?


It seems the gods need people to act in certain ways. There may be many explanations to it, but once I started to think the sci-fi way, it was there.

The world is in fact artificial. A great machine runs it, and keeps it in working condition (possiblities for a strange non-planetary world). This great artificial intelligence keeps all the important things in balance, and makes life possible.

Of ourse, intelligent creatures have this annoying habit of behaving outside of any reason, and spoiling everything around, whether through chance or purpose.

The machine is obviously interested into the humans, as it does not blast them away (it may be a fixed part of its programming). It may even be deeply interwoven in all the little politics and goings-on, finding every day something new and fascinating to study.

Naturally, everything spoils and breaks with time, and even with self-repairing technologies such a machine is guaranteed to have, some damage may be unrepairable. Or the attention given to other matters prevents it from repairing itself completely. Even machines may not be completely reasonable, right?

There might be various ways to interact with the locals. Playing a God (or all Gods) is one, but always brings new demands from believers, and too many questions. But if prophecies are brought into play, it gets much more interesting. Maybe it started as an experiment, to see on how those humanoids translate the message, and whether they try to fullfill it. Or needed the planet-machine help from something its vast intelligence has foreseen, but could not solve easily itself? A villain, seemingly like many others, might create a dangerous philosophy, that would spread and cause great Evil. Civilisation growing too big somewhere may break the too frail ecosystem. Miners that delve deep may discover the machine, instead of the terrible monster foretold, the list can go on.

So a prophecy is easy to use, and heroes (with the not-so-small help of the planet-machine) practically guaranteed to win!


But then, what happened?

 - Something too important has broken, and the world will really die. Sorry.

 - The Machine itself has found its existence useless, and has decided to die. How do you persuade such a being to stay alive?

 - Having not achieved the wanted purpose, the machine must do all the neglected repairs, to be in top condition when the ecosystem will be threatened most. Sadly, the world has to wait without maintence until then, and may die even sooner. Offers some hope, if the heroes can contact it.

 - The Machine (likely built for some other purpose, like mining or space-research) is again visited by its masters. It might have been abandoned for thousands or millions of years, and they are probably angry for it not working properly. The people living here might be their descendants, or not. Maybe the masters don't know, and have to be reminded that an entire world exists here, or have they decided to "quit the experiment"?

 - The Machine was overtaken. Many options possible.

 - The world was constructed for some clear purpose (the old Question of Life, Universe and Everything comes to mind...), that was fulfilled, or has failed. The world will be demolished, or re-arranged in some destructive way..


...hmmm, quite dangerous options, all of them.
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Offline MoonHunter

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Chaotic Prophecies
« Reply #10 on: May 11, 2004, 12:24:20 AM »
I have a short question?

The effective difference between a GOD and The Computer in this setting is?

Invoking Clarke's law, I really can't see much difference.  And if the diety goes mad or loses some of their power, it is the same thing.  

So the diety (or spirit who is the mouthpiece of fate) is mad or hurt or fading away for some reason.  The prophocies are no longer accurate because they are either not getting communicated properly OR the hands of fate and not following up.

So it is, as is so many things, it is just a matter of taste.
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