Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Foundations of the Empire (of Bone)

I’ve been doing a lot of research into Victorian culture as of late (partially out of personal interest), and actually have a very large map of London 1889 on my wall (Booth’s Poverty Map). Obviously for Empire of Bone I’m not planning to do a highly historical version of London - a wide-spread event which causes a large chunk of your population to become walking dead sort of precludes that. However, I do think it’s fun to include parallels and equivalencies to historical developments at that time. it allows for some tongue-in-cheek humor and subtle wit that some people enjoy when they delve into the background. Plus the history nerds love it!


Originally I was thinking of including of some sort of cataclysmic event that changed the course of human history and throw in “walking dead” as a side-effect. There’s plenty to choose from: The Black Plague on 1348-50 killed off 30-60% of European population, the Great Plague of London killed of 20% of London’s population. The cholera pandemics of the early early-to-mid 1800s killed tens of thousands of people.

Part of the trick is also finding a story catalyst that doesn’t significantly change the style of the world you’re trying to build. Would Victorian society have existed if whatever “undead plague” event happened back in the 14th century? If being undead effectively means immortality I think there’d be a lot of 14th century notions sticking around for a long time afterward.

So what if the event happened within more recent history and with a bit more subtlety? If you establish the event happening in the early Victorian era it would make a lot more sense for the Victorian societal trappings to still exist. And instead of having ravenous dead erupting from their tombs it’s more like dead uncle Edward popping by for tea. It isn’t like ravenous dead won’t erupt from their tombs during the course of the story campaign, it just doesn’t happen right away.

Monday, October 4, 2010

“Empire of Bone” Project

EoB_Skull_Icon “Empire of Bone” is the working name for my bit of personal game writing. It’s a project I starting half a decade ago for Savage Worlds and have recently been prompted to finish to get published. The gist of it goes something like this:

“Welcome to the Empire of Bone, a land of Victorian necropoleis where death walks hand-in-hand with the living. Skeleton chimney-sweeps clean the sooty furnace stacks of the factories where zombies toil many a mindless hour. Reanimators work in fetid labs manufacturing bizarre creations brought to life by the strength of their necro-science. Nobles both living and dead ride in silver-filigreed carriages drawn by bony horses, while necromancers in their long black frockcoats scurry to their lodges to practice their mastery of death magicks. The dark-robed priests of the Black Church keep watch over all, protecting the welfare of the many souls within the Empire. This is a place where death is only the beginning of your existence... welcome home!”

That’s the introductory paragraph for the game - now to get the rest of it done. I’m got multiple sections done in varying stages of completeness – now I just need to flesh it out some more and pull it all together into a cohesive whole. Once I get a bit more meat on the bones of this (so to speak) I’ll be looking for proofreaders and playtesters. Let me know if you’re interested!

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Warmaster Undead Army Assembly Complete!

Finally finished assembling my Warmaster Tomb Kings army. I might have to tweak it a little (my dragon rider is missing his spear), but for the most part it should be ready for priming.

Here’s an earlier picture of the existing and new army units:


This is a 15mm scale army, so painting the details on it should be… interesting.

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Creative Endeavors

This is a new web journal dedicated to creativity through hobbies, writing, etc. I hope the creativity expressed here inspires you to be creative in your own way. Cheers!