Thursday, April 12, 2018

A Black & Bloody War - A World On The Razor's Edge OSR Campaign Pitch

How does marry the resources of great OSR material with one's old school campaigns?! For months now I've been marrying Arthurian literature, the Thirty Year War, & Dark Albion's product line by Rpg Pundit.
So then I got the bright idea of marrying super heroes into a TSR classic era adventure but then got shot down because of scheduling conflicts. But then I was also told that it wasn't quite B/X  or OD&D enough ergo the material needed to be a bit closer to the systems that we were already using?!



Well fortunately Edgar Rice Burroughs was there for me & I recently had read the Mad King. 

The book isn't all that important in the scheme of events except in that I'll be using the trappings of  the popular Ruritanian romance  mixed in with the trappings of Pulp era adventure.

"The story is Burrough's version of the then popular Ruritanian romance exemplified by Anthony Hope's The Prisoner of Zenda and its sequel Rupert of Hentzau. Set in Europe immediately before and during World War I, Burroughs' story differs from the Hope books in a number of details, though sharing much of their basic plot."
So what I'm going to be borrowing from Burroughs is the time period & royal trappings at the end of the Age of Empire. Arthur was real, the mythology behind Camelot happened, & the families of Arthur's royal court are still into the intrigues. Everything changed with the Martian Invasion of 1897 has accelerated the era's technology & as a result war has come to Europe! Holes have been punched in time & space as result & cults of chaos are on the rise in every dark corner of the world!
Now every two bit royal & dictator who can get their hands on Martian marauder  technology is having their scientists trying to adapt it for warfare & they're succeeding!


Meanwhile the Greys have seen the wormhole signatures of the Martian invasion & have begun their probing of the situation. In various parts of Europe the spiritualists & occultists of various cults have awoken in their own powers as the ancient horrors of old stir in the darkest corners.



Meanwhile ancient royal families across Europe are wondering why family relics from 2000 years ago are magically awakening & calling out to others for souls & blood. The work of Professor Challenger 

changes the very nature of reality & shakes the foundations of modern science. His ground breaking work on the serpent people of the 'Forbidden City' & their relation to the various ruined city locations of Maple White Land.



So what's happening is that the world is on the edge of WWI & its on a steady course of adventure as well as warfare. Masked men & women slip in & out of the shadows whist adventurers from a host of royal families across Europe try and hold onto their familial lands. Even as 'Dark Forces' & their cults try to take them away. The world is slipping into Hell & perhaps the PC's can tip the balance.
I'm going to be using a combination of Adventurer, Conqueror, King, rpg system mixed with Dark Albion's product line with helping of OD&D resources & classic AD&D first edition adventure modules. Such as David 'Zeb' Cook's I1 Dwellers of The Forbidden City & many others.


There are several reasons for the choices that I'm making with this campaign pitch:

  1. Lovecraftian horrors & adventure locations are still abundant & unexplored in the world. This gives the PC's all kinds of opportunities to blunder into the deep end of things. 
  2. Dark Albion's Cults of Chaos works very well for creating 'modern' cults & pulp secret societies. 
  3. I want to see how Adventurer, Conqueror, King handles a pre WWI Earth even though this isn't our world. 
  4. Adventure at the edge of the map gives PC's the chances to be the heroes! 
  5. Prime opportunities to utilize OSR resources in new & creative ways. 
  6. Planes! This is the dawning of aviation and there's all kinds of revolutions in aviation going on during this time period. 
  7. Vile villains from the darkest parts of Europe! 
  8. More conspiracies then you can shake a stick at. 
  9. A prime time to stick in classic AD&D modules to give the PC's more headaches. 
  10. A mix of gonzo weirdness & classic Dungeons & Dragons style adventure!

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