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Setting Background
« on: December 10, 2006, 06:19:04 PM »

Ancient Gamer

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*This post also exists in the game OOC thread*
Bleak Wood
Unlike other towns in the wastelands, the town of Bleak Wood has not been built from the wreckage of days bygone. While the villages of the void are made of ramshackle huts built from the ruins of bombed buildings and the tribes that dwell in the decaying remains of trains and trucks  the town of Bleak Wood has been constructed from the first stone and up, residing in a place where no other town has ever stood. Well, almost, for two buildings did stand here when the first stones were laid: A huge concrete and steel arms depot of some four floors above ground, and unknown floors below, as well as a guard bunker that now serves as a storage facility. According to some the arms depot had been a maximum security prison before the Great War, but had been annexed by the Armies of the Ancients during the Great War.

Bleak Wood is a walled compound, completely surrounded by a four meters tall white brick fence, with wooden watch towers guarding the perimeter and barbed wire covering its top. Inside mankind has made a first effort to rise again, and even though life is tough here, the town has made progress. From this center of civilization reborn, warrior outposts have sprung as far as twenty kilometers away, protecting the hinterland of Bleak Wood. 

Inhabitants: 1358 people, 130 mutants (weak mutations) 38% male population.
Armed Forces: 50 Sentinels of the Town Watch aka the Watchmen. (Full kevlar body armour for the officers and various small firearms for all Watchmen).
Origin: Erected near an abandoned arms depot. Nowadays the arms depot is the mansion of the Warden. Under the reign of Warden Griffin, the scientists of Bleak Wood were trained in chemistry, computer programming, biology, metallurgy and medicine. Thirty years ago they begun the Bleak Wood experiment which resulted in the albino birch wood to the north of town. In latter years the efforts of the science staff has focused on other, secret research.
Ruler: The Warden of Bleak Wood: Alec Griffin
Export: Tech equipment, woodwork, slaves and ammunition
Import: Grain, vegetables, horses, spare parts, fuel, advanced technology.
Currency: Ammunition.

Buildings and Areas of Interest
General info:
The streets of town are narrow and the buildings are made of aluminum plates, concrete or bricks. Neon signs display the name of shops and coloured light bulbs hang over the streets, illuminating them in a garish display of colours. Not everyone has a place to live and nearly every alley have one or two hobos living among the garbage and offal. There is no sewer, but each residence is bound by law to bring their waste outside the perimeter of the town. Legally Nomad Town is outside, but citizens trying to empty their offal there have a tendency to end up dead.

South Wall Storage Facility:
The South Wall Storage Facility has been erected from the remains of the guard bunker that protected the arms depot before the Great War. Today it is run by Marcus Maximus, a fat old man with a reputation for liking young girls and vodka. It is the town’s only high security storage facility and throughout the eight floors of the bunker are several lockers and cells where valuables can be stored. Lately the rumours say that Marcus Maximus has rented an entire floor to Wastelander scavengers that has captured a rather ominous herd of surviving pre-war mutant killer beasts, used by the armies of the ancients to wreak havoc among the lines of the enemy. While none have seen these horrors, their wretched cries and snarls have kept more than one child up at night during the last week. This is also where the PC group has stored the unique artifact that they found in an old, abandoned military research facility that the ancients once used. Had it not been for Ceres losing her water flask and digging in the sand, the hidden entrance to the facility would never have been found. Now the artifact, that carries the holy sign of Radiatos – The Cloud of Destruction, is safely stored in secure vault number 13 until a buyer presents himself.

The Space Port:
The space port is located at a small plateau due east of town, the Spacer Plateau, elevated about 40 meters above the rest of the buildings. It has been constructed by the Warden in conjunction with the space dwellers. About every third month one of the cargo ships of the space dwellers lands to trade some of their advanced munitions and technology in exchange for female slaves and captured mutants. The members of the Faculty are astounded by the level of sophistication the technology of the space dwellers have achieved. The space port is off limits to anyone, but the watchmen.

The Faculty / The Academy
The faculty is where the science staff of about 30 devout and highly skilled scientists and doctors performs their research. The Faculty is off limits for non-sentinels and non-scientists, but the north wing of the low brick building is open for emergency surgery and during the bi-yearly rounds of public health care. The members of the Faculty are held in high esteem throughout the city, and are allowed to live in the very best quarters of town. There are several golden domes on the larger buildings of the Faculty, and a huge ravine tears right through its heart where a Spacer cargo vessel plowed through town after it crash landed atop the Faculty.

Nomad Town
Nomad Town is a semi-permanent settlement of nomads dwelling in tents outside the walls of Bleak Wood. The actual inhabitants of the tent town varies, but there is nearly always someone there. The nomads provide spiritual healing and religious services, and they trade at the Bazaar. It is common knowledge that names can be left under the bucket outside of the only red tent in town, and the one who put the name there will receive a visit from one of the Nomad Fatebringers within an uncertain period of time. Once a price has been agreed upon, the named individual must pay with his life. This is a fate that few have survived.
The Bazaar
The Bazaar is the marketplace of the town, and as such it is never quiet. People come here to trade, whether it is night or day. The main currency at the Bazaar is ammunition, and here you can buy such things as: weapons, armor, equipment, food, livestock, slaves, horses, vehicles or even advanced technology, whenever it is salvaged from the ruins of the ancients. Spirit weed, alcohol and various performance adjusting drugs are also available at the market, and is not regulated by Bleak Wood law. The hardship of the post apocalyptic wastelands makes being a junkie foolish at best and downright suicidal at worst, yet drugs are sold for battlefield use, medical use or even for purposes of recreation.

The Prison
Under the North Watch Tower, lies the hatch that leads down into the catacombs known as the Prison. A network of brick tunnels leading from the North Tower to the Warden’s building, these tunnels contains damp cells worthy of a true medieval dungeon. The law of Bleak Wood prohibits theft, murder and disobeying the Warden and the Sentinels of the Watch. Anyone unfortunate enough to end up in prison do regret their actions as torture is legal and practiced with wild abandon. Many of the cripples encountered in town have become so because of a stay in prison.

The Barracks
The Barracks of the Town Watchmen has been placed on the ground floor of the Warden’s Building. Captain Soule Bleakwood leads the detachment of soldiers and during his five year reign, no hostiles have breached the town defences.

The Warden’s Building
The Warden’s Building lies on the floors above the barracks. Nothing much is known about those floors, except that the Warden daily meets his advisors there along with the Captain of the Watch. The Warden’s building used to be the old arms depot and is made of layers of concrete and steel. Every other month Warden Griffin appears on the upper floor balcony to hold a speech to the citizens of Bleak Wood.

Ye Donor Shoppe & Bargain Implants
The Shoppe as it is called amongst the inhabitants of Bleak Wood is where desperate men go to sell their spare organs to finance gambling debts, or to pay off loan sharks. It is owned by “Surgical Damien”, a Faculty outcast. The Shoppe deals in organs and implants. The rumors even say that Damien sometimes acquires his implants by removing them from their previous owner, a practice that would fall under murder, theft and grave robbing by Bleak Wood law (It is illegal to remove body parts of the deceased, not to acquire his personal effects… Implants are considered body parts). No one has been able to prove these rumors though, and the only thing that can be proved is that Damien’s implants have a tendency to fail at inopportune moments. Still, if one wants an implant done, Damien’s place is the only known facility that provides such services.

Drug’s Place
Drug’s place is a bar of sorts by the west gates of the town. As the name indicates, the bar provides whatever the client desires. The bar’s wenches serve alchol, injects drugs into the blood vessels of the client and even provide sexual favours if the client has enough ammunition to pay for the royal treatment. It is owned by Steroid Anne, a muscular ex-mercenary that keeps her wenches in line.
« Last Edit: February 02, 2008, 07:13:20 AM by Ancient Gamer »
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Re: Setting Background
« Reply #1 on: December 15, 2006, 10:16:52 PM »

Ancient Gamer

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The Wasteland and The Nomads:

[Dozus] 3:34 am: Back at home, unpacking, watching the home team win the championship.
[Ancient Gamer] 3:34 am: Dozey! Can you whip up a character for me this weekend you think?
[Dozus] 3:34 am: Also writing new char for post-apoc game.    
[Ancient Gamer] 3:34 am: Remember you guys need me to roll for your dark sides and special benefits!
[Ancient Gamer] 3:34 am:     
[Ancient Gamer] 3:34 am:                     
[Dozus] 3:35 am: So as a nomad, what do I need to know about the world outside of Bleak Wood?
[Murometz] 3:36 am: I am confused to be perfectly blunt, on the tech level, and also, what exactly the world was like before Apoc
[Ancient Gamer] 3:36 am: Aha
[Ancient Gamer] 3:37 am: Questions !
[Murometz] 3:37 am: read SE's character. It reads liek a fantasy guy (though REAL good!). I said that to him, and he said,. yeah, I know what you mean
[Murometz] 3:37 am: he also didnt seem sure on tech
[Dozus] 3:38 am: And how long was the apoc?  I mean, do people still remember the old world?  Are there places called "Neue Köln," "New Chicago," etc.?  Are
there any remnants of the old faiths?  Are we even still talking about post-apoc Earth, or another post-apoc world?
[Ancient Gamer] 3:39 am: First for Dozus: The world outside Bleak Wood is.... Well, imagine great cities brought down by bombs and fiery rain. Then nature
reclaimed them, except in some areas where nature will never get back because of biological weapons, chemical weapons or nuclear weapons.
[The Citadel]: Dozus has left at 3:39 am
[The Citadel]: Dozus has entered at 3:39 am
[Dozus] 3:39 am: s**t, I'm getting the new Firefox.
[Ancient Gamer] 3:39 am: So around Bleak Wood there is the albino birch wood to the north. Then there is a huge wasteland to the south where the nomads do
not go.
[Dozus] 3:40 am: Hey, they turned off the filter.
[Ancient Gamer] 3:40 am: There are cities, sort of, with inhabitants in the range of 500-5000, with Bleak Wood being a town of some 1500 souls.
[Murometz] 3:40 am: hmm, this expose is helpoing me! go on
[Dozus] 3:41 am: So mid-sized town.
[Ancient Gamer] 3:41 am: Humanity has gone back to the feudal stage, with city states in which towns serve as fortifications in which the country dwellers
come to trade, or come for shelter during war and raider activity
[Ancient Gamer] 3:42 am: Well, that was bad wording, but you caught my drift, aye?
[Dozus] 3:42 am: So do we have lords, kings, vassals, etc.?
[Ancient Gamer] 3:42 am: The world before the war is little known. Not much is remembered anymore as the Great War was over four generations ago.
[Murometz] 3:42 am: I dont mean to oversimply, but are we talking Mad-Max-ish type tech level?
[Ancient Gamer] 3:43 am: There is the City of Light with the High Emperor King Cassula, a vast city numbering more than four thousand citizens.
[Ancient Gamer] 3:43 am: Yes
[Ancient Gamer] 3:43 am: Mad Max-ish
[Murometz] 3:43 am: excellent! now I FEEL it
[Ancient Gamer] 3:44 am: brb 2 min
[Dozus] 3:44 am: I like.
[Murometz] 3:44 am: Badblood Kiph will fit in nicely!
[Dozus] 3:44 am: What's your guy, Muro?  A denizen of Bleak Wood?
[Murometz] 3:45 am: I was thinking thief, nomad type, but maybe not..maybe citizen
[Murometz] 3:45 am: I need another 24-48 hours.     
[Murometz] 3:45 am: I have his "thing" down though
[Dozus] 3:46 am: I know the feeling.    
[Dozus] 3:46 am: I'm making a nomad pathfinder.
[Dozus] 3:46 am: But I need more nomadic background.
[Murometz] 3:46 am: pathfinder. ok, I am sure you wil come in handy     
[Ancient Gamer] 3:46 am: Okay, here goes
[Dozus] 3:46 am: I hope to be.
Dozus listens intently.
[Murometz] 3:46 am: me too
[Ancient Gamer] 3:47 am: There are other titles too... Some rulers name themselves Warden, or Mayor, or Captain Sheriff, or what have you... Basically the
survivors recreated what they could and strong individuals took titles as they saw fit
[Murometz] 3:48 am: makes sense
[Ancient Gamer] 3:49 am: So a journey could be through vast forests, sometimes with ruins of days bygone, sometimes just plain, natural woodlands. Or a
journey could be through the nuclear wastes, where the radiation levels will make you sick if you spend enough time in there, and where there is but sand and
infertile soil and rocks and ruin.
[Ancient Gamer] 3:50 am: Now for the nomads:
[kamina] 3:50 am: sorry to interupt.. but, would anyone in this room be put off or confused is the word equidistant was used in a sub
[Ancient Gamer] 3:50 am: Nope
[Ancient Gamer] 3:50 am: Not me
[Dozus] 3:50 am: I'm familiar with the term.
[Murometz] 3:50 am: no kamina, we all use big words all the time
[Murometz] 3:50 am:     
[Dozus] 3:50 am: Frequently and incessantly, even.
[kamina] 3:51 am: lol.. just checking..
[kamina] 3:51 am:     
[Murometz] 3:51 am: hmmm, you should read a few  subs on the site. You'll see a mighty vocabulary
[Ancient Gamer] 3:52 am: The nomads are individuals that organize in clans and families. They have no stronghold, no state to call home, but they have the
honor of the families and they stick together. For the nomads the tradition of story telling is held high, and through stories they keep track of which individuals
have fallen from grace (in general betrayed other nomads), which has done great things and they recount the lore of yesterday.
[the Wanderer] 3:52 am: I thought it had something to do with horses.....    
[Dozus] 3:53 am: So sort of African Bushman-esque.
[Ancient Gamer] 3:53 am: The nomads keep many secret caches throughout the lands, and they have secret hideouts where they can rest and find provisions,
but also where they put new provisions for others to use.
[Ancient Gamer] 3:54 am: No... More like... Gypsies and other nomads of europe
[Dozus] 3:54 am: Ah.
[Ancient Gamer] 3:55 am: Gypsis have some strong cliches to them, so I picture more people like our local "Tater" (You guys have probably never heard of
those nomadic groups)
[Murometz] 3:55 am: okay, I a nomad
[Dozus] 3:55 am: Tater?
[Murometz] 3:55 am: Romany, Tater, etc...ok
[the Wanderer] 3:55 am: Tarters maybe?
[Murometz] 3:55 am: different names for wanderers in different countries
[Ancient Gamer] 3:55 am: But in a fallen world, the nomads are hold the moral high ground.
[Ancient Gamer] 3:55 am: Yes
[Dozus] 3:55 am: Taters?  What's taters, precious?
[Murometz] 3:56 am: that would be Tatar, or Tartar Wanderer
[Dozus] 3:56 am: Ah, gotcha.
[Ancient Gamer] 3:56 am: Yep
[the Wanderer] 3:56 am: That's it!
[Dozus] 3:56 am: Do they have religion, or are they more honor-based morals?
[Ancient Gamer] 3:56 am: They are highly religious and of moral high standards.
[Ancient Gamer] 3:57 am: But... Alas, their moral extends mostly to other nomads
[Ancient Gamer] 3:57 am: Hence the Fatebringers cannot kill other nomads
[Murometz] 3:57 am: so can a "wanderer" (escapee from a sickening torture/imprisonment) shack up with a travelling clan?
[Ancient Gamer] 3:57 am: But lesser men is a ok
[Dozus] 3:57 am: Xenophobic?
[Ancient Gamer] 3:57 am: Yes
[Ancient Gamer] 3:57 am: Hmmm
[Murometz] 3:57 am: good, Kiph will be a nomad
[Ancient Gamer] 3:58 am: Xenophobic?
[Ancient Gamer] 3:58 am: I guess...
[Ancient Gamer] 3:58 am: They are to a certain degree... But they are the merchants of the wastes, so too much Xenophobia would be detrimental to them.
[Dozus] 3:58 am: Like, being morally righteous, they look down upon corrupt citydwellers and avoid their ilk?
[Ancient Gamer] 3:58 am: Yep
[Dozus] 3:59 am: But they have to let some of it pass, 'cause they have to trade.  Makes sense.
[Ancient Gamer] 3:59 am: "And since the cityfolk are the offspring of Babylon, they have not the rights of real humans"
[Ancient Gamer] 3:59 am: YEs
[Ancient Gamer] 3:59 am: Yes
[Ancient Gamer] 4:01 am: But in addition to this there are the Space Dwellers. Those are survivors of the cataclysm that escaped to off world space stations and
ships as humanity fell to its knees. These technologically advanced people come to the technological enclaves to trade tech for slaves and rare artifacts from the
[Dozus] 4:02 am: Hm.
[Murometz] 4:02 am: whoaw
[Ancient Gamer] 4:02 am:     
[Ancient Gamer] 4:03 am: Yep.
[Ancient Gamer] 4:03 am: They are rare and they only visit the advanced cities and towns, like Bleak Wood.
[Murometz] 4:03 am: gah, wife and baby, gotta go for 1/2 hour, brbr
[The Citadel]: Murometz has left at 4:04 am
[Dozus] 4:04 am: So Space Dwellers = opportunists and slavers.
[Ancient Gamer] 4:04 am: Yep
[Dozus] 4:05 am: I see.
[Ancient Gamer] 4:05 am: But to the survivors of the wastes they are traders in essential goods and equipment.
[Dozus] 4:05 am: Naturally.
[Ancient Gamer] 4:05 am: So. You got enough info?
[Ancient Gamer] 4:06 am: Can you play in this setting?
[Dozus] 4:06 am: Tell me a bit more about the religion of the nomads.
[Dozus] 4:06 am: Is there a united nomadic religion, or do they each follow their own gods and spirits?
[Ancient Gamer] 4:07 am: They believe in an ancient entity called Amarokh that lives imprisoned in an ancient oasis far to the south
[Ancient Gamer] 4:07 am: According to Nomad legends it was imprisoned by a greater evil that the Ancients released in the final days of the Great War
[Ancient Gamer] 4:08 am: Many are the nomads that have gone in search of that oasis. Some have returned empty handed, others have not returned at all.
[Dozus] 4:08 am: Fascinating.
[Ancient Gamer] 4:09 am: There are spiritmasters of the Nomads that devote their lives to Amarokh, but some nomads do some ancestor worship too, rubbing
clay figurines of mighy clansmen of the past as they pray for luck and good fortune..
[The Citadel]: Wulfhere has entered at 4:09 am
[Ancient Gamer] 4:10 am: Need any more info?
[Dozus] 4:10 am: Just a bit.      Could I have a few examples of tech a nomad might have access to?
[Wulfhere] 4:11 am: Good Even!
[Dozus] 4:11 am: Grittings, Wulf!
[kamina] 4:11 am: Hello Wulf.
[Ancient Gamer] 4:12 am: Nomads do not trade with the space traders and their tech is mostly at (our) contemporary level. They mostly use horses, but
sometimes trucks. Each clan has access to shotguns and rifles and even some explosives. Sometimes they recover scientifically advanced weaponry and
technology, but these things are usually safeguarded for bartering purposes.
[Ancient Gamer] 4:12 am: Many nomads prefer the "old ways" however, and crossbows and spears are common among the nomads.
[Ancient Gamer] 4:13 am: Especially Fatebringers who specialize in "silent killing"
[Ancient Gamer] 4:13 am: Howdy Wulf!
[Wulfhere] 4:13 am: I'm still struggling with the computer, so if I vanish witout sayng "bye", please forgive me.
[Ancient Gamer] 4:13 am:     
[Dozus] 4:13 am: Okay, I follow.
[Dozus] 4:14 am: Think I have enough to make a character.     
[Ancient Gamer] 4:14 am: Though, of course, a submachinegun with a silencer would be great     
« Last Edit: December 16, 2006, 01:07:53 AM by Ancient Gamer »
Authentic Strolenite™©®

Look back over the past, with its changing empires that rose and fell, and you can foresee the future, too.
-Marcus Aurelius

Re: Setting Background
« Reply #2 on: December 16, 2006, 01:07:18 AM »

Ancient Gamer

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The Tribals / The Wastelanders:

[Ancient Gamer] 6:40 am: When the bombs fell there were dispersed
groups of people left alone. Survivors against all odds, carving a living in the
[Ancient Gamer] 6:40 am: Deprived of the resources and knowledge that
enabled others to create towns and cities, these lost people developed
communities nonetheless
[Ancient Gamer] 6:41 am: These became known as the Wastelanders, or
the Lost, and their isolated communities laid scattered through the
[Ancient Gamer] 6:43 am: Each of the tribes have their own set of customs
and rules, and interaction with them can be hazardous as they might have
strange and unknown taboos, like not looking to the sky during the
daytime, or not looking at the unprotected face of females. Often unwary
citizens of greater towns find himself rather dead as one such obscure
taboo has been violated.     
[Ancient Gamer] 6:46 am: Some of the tribes have a reputation for being
cannibals and sharpened teeth are common in tribals from such an area.
Usually tribals have no advanced weapons and rely on more primitve
[Ancient Gamer] 6:46 am: Some of the tribes have come so far from truth,
that they believe technology to be magic. To them a rifle is a rod of thunder
and a video camera is a soul-box.
[Ancient Gamer] 6:47 am: As a player you can decide what kind of
knowledge about technology your tribal has
[Ancient Gamer] 6:48 am: Need anything more? Come with any questions!
[Dozus] 6:48 am: I'm assuming religion is mostly animist/shamnistic?
[Ancient Gamer] 6:49 am: They often live in huts or tents in the wastelands
and, yes, your assumption is correct. However there is no set of rules
regarding all the tribes, because they are so many and diverse. But the
tribes was formed long ago by resourceless groups of scared people, with
only each other to ask for guidance and rules.
[Dozus] 6:50 am: What sort of flora/fauna live out in the wastelands? 
What's a tribe's prime food source?
[Ancient Gamer] 6:51 am: Deer, elk, rabbit and so on. Even the mutated
[Ancient Gamer] 6:52 am: Nature as we know it has moved on and there
are vast forests, but also huge areas of desolation and ruin
[Dozus] 6:52 am: I think that information should be sufficient.
[Dozus] 6:52 am: Gotcha.
[Ancient Gamer] 6:52 am: Okay.
[Ancient Gamer] 6:52 am: There are even farms!
[Dozus] 6:52 am: Mutant corn!
[Ancient Gamer] 6:54 am: So to clarify: The world is as it is today, but:
There are enormous areas that have been laid in total ruin. Nothing will ever
grow there. 2) Mutation has resulted in strange beings and phenomenons
such as psionics. 3) Humanity is no longer the unchallenged ruler of earth
[Dozus] 6:54 am: Your basic post-apocalyptic society.
[Dozus] 6:54 am: Fallout by way of Mad Max.
[Ancient Gamer] 6:55 am: 4) religion has become strange and while variants of our
own religion still exists some pretty weird cults have arisen
[Ancient Gamer] 6:56 am: 5) before the war there was a great exodus of
highly talented and / or rich people
[Ancient Gamer] 6:56 am: (to outer space)
[Dozus] 6:56 am: Ah.
[Ancient Gamer] 6:57 am: 6) Before the war humanity delved in some
pretty advanced genetic engineering. There were horrors created during
that day and age, horrors that still haunt the wastelands.
[Ancient Gamer] 6:59 am: 7) A new faction has been observed (but only
by the space dwellers), and they are known as the foreigners. They are
space dwellers too, but their technology puts that of the space dwellers to
[Dozus] 7:00 am: Do they interact with those on the planet much?
[Ancient Gamer] 7:00 am: Rumors of the foreigners could have been
overheard by inhabitants of the technologically advanced enclaves that the
space dwellers trade with (like Bleak Wood)
[Dozus] 7:01 am: Hm.
[Ancient Gamer] 7:01 am: The space dwelling humans? No, they rarely
come. At max 3 or 4 times a year to a city such as Bleak Wood.
[Dozus] 7:02 am: Gotcha.
[Ancient Gamer] 7:02 am: But rumors have been heard of patrols
encountering space dweller aircraft in isolated valleys and forests. The
ships have seemed abandoned, but in some of the stories the space
dwellers have erected tents and facilities nearby and have held fairs of
[Dozus] 7:03 am: Interesting.
« Last Edit: December 16, 2006, 01:11:40 AM by Ancient Gamer »
Authentic Strolenite™©®

Look back over the past, with its changing empires that rose and fell, and you can foresee the future, too.
-Marcus Aurelius