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Ryngard Cosmogony


I've been toying with a rough cosmogony for Ryngard (or any other setting, but it functions as a decent stand-in). I really like the idea of a setting with this as the underlying story; as it stands now, it leaves things extremely open, but also offers some nice options for the potential GM to play with. I'd appreciate any thoughts on this, especially the implications of the cosmological model. I've listed a few of my own ideas for it, but more are always welcome.


--- Quote ---"Chaos, seething raw formlessness. A limitless expanse of unshaped potentiality, twisting and writhing within itself, comprising the entirety of Existence. A twist cascades into a series of turns, a bubble forms. The bubble expands, consuming unknowable quantities of Chaos probability mass in the swirling depths of infinity. The twists and turns of the bubble dictate the inherent laws of that which now resides within this small sanctuary of Sanity. Unlike the sea of instability raging outside the confines of what can be deemed Reality, there now exists a concept of Time, of the passing and changing of events with respect to a fixed reference frame."
--- End quote ---

~Chaos Beasts -- as with Reality, so with Chaos Beasts. Spontaneously generated, they're the result of raw chaos potential leaking into the bubble of Reality. Poof, instant monster to spice things up.

~No demiurge, no pantheon. Reality is the product of simple probability-munging and self-organizing patterns. Deity-level entities can certainly exist, but their origins are mundane; creatures and people that acquired phenomenal cosmic power.

~World-walking and Outsiders. Who knows what else lies within the vast tempest from which Reality was carved? Other realities might exist, were one able to find a way to bridge the gap across a sea of unfathomable madness.

~Chaos manipulation. Beyond normal magic, which operates under the strict rules of Reality. By manipulating the very stuff of creation, literally anything can be accomplished. Terrifyingly dangerous, however. Primarily cultists, Outsiders, and deities will use this. Expect horrific consequences, even if successful.

I don't expect this to be player knowledge, or even to really come up in casual play, but some of it would definitely color the setting in unique ways. The occasional Chaos Beast popping into existence would influence cultures, though how I haven't quite thought through (it depends on the rate of appearance). Chaos manipulation would provide cultists with an edge that the (mostly) rational PCs can't match blow for blow, as well as make for a nice segue into the occasional dark horror subplot.

Here are a few thoughts of my own.

1. How does reality, the bubble of the game world, keep the Chaos outside from dissolving it into nothingness?
2. It would be amusing if the pantheon (such as it is), knows something about the truth of the Chaos, but makes up their own stories to impress the mortals.  Through either insecurity or delusions of grandeur, they could make up a whole history featuring themselves, and claim to have created the world and everything in it.  Who could possibly prove them wrong, anyway?
3. Or perhaps the deities (such as they are), are mostly law & order types who actively work to keep the reality bubble from collapsing?

1) I was presuming that it was simply the nature of the bubble; it self-organized from raw Chaos, it can withstand the deleterious effects of the Chaos tempest (at least for some fraction of infinity). Further (and this is the mindset I'd prefer when using it), while it seems like the order within Reality stands in opposition to the Chaos outside, Reality is simply a manifestation of Chaos, and the two don't necessarily need to be in a constant struggle.

That said, I get the feeling there's at least one cult in possession of the True Knowledge that would like to tear down the borders of Reality and let everything dissolve back into the primordial probability. Just because the two aren't in natural opposition doesn't mean the effects wouldn't be catastrophic if the bubble were popped.

2) I was thinking that some of them might have discovered the truth, either before ascension (and probably used the Chaos as a stepping stone to godhood) or after. I do especially like the idea that they insert themselves into the narrative, rewriting the creation history as they tell their disciples. It definitely makes them more like actual people, instead of just abstract concepts. And of course, there would be some that don't actively deceive people, they simply know and do their own thing.

3) I had the thought of at least a few dark gods a'la Cthulhu that would be actively trying to tear down the bubble (definitely related to the cults from #1), while others would be attempting to keep reality stable. And of course, their followers would be in a similar conflict.

Some very good thoughts here!


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