Re: So what've we got for John?

From: donald_at_...
Date: Wed, 01 Jul 2009 23:44:04 GMT

In message <192660.49320.qm_at_...> Jane Williams writes:
>From: John Hughes john.hughes_at_...
>> As someone who has devoted a lot of time in the past to developing
>> the Whitewall story, both in game background, scenario seeds and
>> fiction (Kallyrkala), I will make an effort to have this information
>> available to the tribe in a convenient format concurrent with or
>> before the publication of any Whitewall supplement. Obviously, many
>> people here have made similar investments, and I invite anyone
>> interested to think about articles for publication. If there is
>> interest and energy, we can move more quickly. An enormous amount has
>> already been done. I would be looking at either a series of free PDFs
>> in magazine format or, if there is interest, perhaps a special issue
>> of one of the fanzines.
>OK, from my memories of the WIKI and various people's work, this is
>what we've got, and what we'd like to have but haven't got. The Wiki's
>had problems in the last year or so: Charles has been busy with other
>things, and I haven't ben able to edit it for ages: don't know about
>other people? I did consider starting up a new Wiki and transferring
>and tidying both at the same time, but then went back to writing
>fiction instead.

I did try editing once but got my username/password rejected. I suspect the username database is corrupt.

>Physical layout of the general area and of the City itself: got, mostly.
>We never detailed the various underground parts and tunnels, but probably
>best not to tie those down anyway. We have maps, we have locations of
>important sites, we have descriptions of many of them (I have a few to
>transfer from works of fiction).
>Overall timeline, general trends, major events: got.
>Detailed timeline: spotty, and probably best left that way. Tying things
>down tightly makes it less useable.

We want more events for 1620 & 1621. At the moment we have everything happening in 1619/early 1620. Then the fall at the end of 1621. I would suggest one event per season. Make it clear that these are only some of the things happening.

>NPCs on the Orlanthi side:
>Got some, but some gaping holes.
>In particular, we have no real idea of most of Broyan's Ring: the
>non-Sartarite part of it. I seem to remember Jeff coming up with a
>list of names - but that's all it was, just a list of names that
>might as well have come off the Random Heortling Name Generator for
>all the good it did. The "locals" should outnumber our Sartarites,
>so we need to do some development there.

That gives me an idea for an event. We've got that peaceweaver of Broyan's. When things get really bad in 1621 the ring put pressure on Broyan to make peace. The PCs will probably want to scupper that especially if they are aware of what Broyan's trying to do. It will fail eventually because Tatius doesn't want it either but the negotiations could drag on for quite a while.

>Donald and I know about one or two minor Volsaxi clans, though
>haven't named them, and one Volsaxi warband (but it gets wiped out
>in 1619, so doesn't help much).

It's after Tatius arrives so early 1620 rather than 1619. However the clan will raise another warband to replace it. Probably before the end of 1620. Full of young would be heros.......

>Then again, we're not trying to produce a complete WW Book (are we?
>are you?)

Err No. Not if we want to get anywhere.

>and perhaps the reason we haven't produced anything about the Volsaxi
>is the same reason they probably aren't needed: no-one's interested,
>because we all start our campaigns in Sartar!

I think we need something to show what's different about the Volsaxi. I'm a bit vague on what that is but at the very least it's a *big* tribe with more/bigger clans than Sartarites are used to. That means the structure will be different in practice if not theory. I'd suggest that rather than the politics involving individual clans there are some sort of clan groupings who support particular leaders.

The option to create Volsaxi characters should also be there.

>Sartarites: yes, we know about them, in exhaustive detail. Rob did a
>lot of work on how they interact, in particular.
>The Aeolians have been mentioned recently: do we have any?

There was one NPC described on the wiki. On the principle of MGF I think we should have some.

>Would any of the herobands from existing publications be likely to
>show up here?

From MoLD on the Orlanthi side - The Hidden Gale, Berinda's Daughters, The Little Sisters and the Eaglebrown Warlocks.

I'll have a look at the Lunars later, there are potentially lots.

>NPCs on the Lunar side:
>At least here we're balanced. We know things about the commanders,
>we have a fair idea of the units present at any given time.

They probably needs filling out with more NPCs. A paymaster and a quartermaster for example. A Lunar campaign is going to involve fighting the authorities as much as the Orlanthi. They are going to win but it shouldn't be easy.

>An overview of logistics: supplies needed, stores held, what has to
>be imported. This is where the "sneaking supplies into Whitewall"
>scenario will come in, so we do need to get the background consistent.
>An area where we seem to have produced a lot of the wacky ideas on the
>fringes as one-off things to try, but not the basic everyday essentials.
>Also, Donald and I had to look at supply routes when trying to get
>Penny's work to fit, and we need to integrate that.

I think basic supplies will come from local clans, probably on pack horses and mules across Fellmoor and by boat though the underground caverns. The city will have substantial grain stores and stocks of spear shafts and arrows. In 1619 they will probably be being replenished as fast as they are used up. By 1621 getting a small boatload of grain through will be a major event.

The Lunars also have a supply problem - they need lots more stuff than the Orlanthi and there are plenty of Orlanthi about who will try an see they don't get it. Their main routes seem to be from Wilmskirk in the north and Smithstone in the south.

>Mythic history, magical strong points and weaknesses:
>we've had some good ideas there, but they need tidying up and making
>sure they're consistent.
>What temples are where, how the basic magical defences work, what
>changes when Orlanth becomes more and more tied to WW.
>The idea, which I love, that the Orlanthi did a "double-dare", accepted
>that Orlanth was going to die, and made sure that it would be on their
>terms, escalating the whole thing as a result.
>Broyan's tie-in with Vingkot - make sure we know how this works, and
>what long-term quests he and his ring are doing when.
>Big events in detail:
>Shargashi in the basement - depends on that mythic history to have the
>resulting floods of undead, but the basic incident is good, and gives
>plenty of scope for PC involvement.
>We have detail: far too much detail! about the Bat. What we actually
>need is enough freedom that the real answer is "your players did it".
>Give some options, and enough basic facts that the GM can invent what
>they need, perhaps. A collection of ways in which the Bat has been
>dealt with so far?

I think this is very dependant on the level of the PCs and when they arrive at WW. In many ways if the PC's beat the Bat in 1619 the rest of the seige becomes an anti-climax because there isn't another dramatic victory for the Orlanthi. This is one case where the story arc requires the typical PC to have just arrived and achieves a success by not running screaming from the city or arrives after the Bat has been defeated. Then they can spend the next year or so trying to match what Broyan achieved.

If the PCs beat the Bat themselves they either need to leave WW or they are going to be the heroic leaders of the siege. In that case the campaign arc will involve more politics than fighting and how the Volsaxi react to their High King being effectively supplanted by the PCs.

>The final fall: again, we can come up with plenty of ideas, but how
>the players can get involved will vary enormously from one group to
>another, and what really happens will have to be variable to let it
>work for them.

I think we need to explain what Broyan does here. Wasn't the concensus that he and a few followers went to a short world (Vinkot's Hall?). How we get Orlanthi PCs involved in that I'm not sure. Probably they need to be involved in getting people out to fight again another day.

It's the Lunar side which is going to be interesting and the PCs should have got to the level of taking a major part in action.

>We also have assorted works of fiction by many people, set in and
>around WW and the plots mentioned above. Quite what we do with them,
>I'm not sure. The various complete short stories can be sorted out:
>either publish as-is, or ransack them for scenario potential, or both.
>I'm slightly frustrated by having half a novel (well, about 50K words
>so far) that isn't likely to be completed in any reasonable time. It
>includes some interesting incidents that might well form the basis of
>scenarios, and some background that might be of general use. Donald?

Agreed, I think we can both plunder various writings for bits and pieces to slot in. Particularly NPCs. A section of short stories seems a good idea, especially as it involves minimal work.

>I think the bit where Tarkalor's Gate falls, is retaken, and needs
>guarding during a ritual might be useful?

Yes, that will make a decent event for Fire or Earth Season 1620.

>Also what I found out about who "mans" the entrances and greets you
>on your return to the city, that can be important when the Heroes
>return from whatever quest they were on.
>OK, that was from memory. What did I miss?

A pretty good summary of where we are.

If we are serious about getting something together we had better sort out a structure for the document so we can start finding places to put everything and fill in the gaps that appear. Who's going to take the lead on this? I know I haven't the knowledge.

Donald Oddy

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