Friday, December 16, 2011

Game Settings I Wish I Had Time To Work On

 An alternate history pre-Columbian America campaign with a twist -- the fringe-archaeology theory that America was visited by Celts, Norsemen, Irish monks, Romans, Phoenicians, Chinese, etc., is literally true, and those civilizations still exist alongside Native American civilizations. I'm envisioning kind of a Robert E. Howard kind of feel, with the adventurers being Europeans who discover a very different New World than Columbus did. I teach high school world history, but I don't have a talent for alternate histories, though they're one of my favorite sub-genres of science fiction.

This setting (let's call it Mundus Novus, "New World" in Latin) isn't meant to be a serious alternate history, but more a setting for adventure. I have two conceits: that remnants of ancient civilizations survived (somehow) in Mundus Novus (alongside native cultures) long after their parent civilizations failed, and that they do not have more than sporadic contact with the civilizations of the Old World that leaves little mre than tales of unusual strangers from far-off lands.

This reality is also a fantasy setting; the natives believe in magic, though I'd say that most of what they believe in is superstition and chicanery. The rest, however, is the province of dark, bloodthirsty gods, served by Aztec priests, Druids, worshippers of Odin and Moloch.  

I do have some notions about which civilizations are to be found in Mundus Novus, thugh this is NOT the product of much research:

Phoenicians, who have set up colonies around the Gulf of Mexico; they founded a great trading city on the site of New Orleans in our reality.
Mayas or Aztecs in Mesoamerica
Irish colonies following the trail blazed by St. Brendan; possibly on Manhattan Island
Pagan Celts (somewhere in the Northeast?)
Norsemen in Vinland
Romans (maybe around the Chesapeake Bay area?)
Chinese on the West Coast (legendary Fu-sang)
Pueblo cultures in the Southwest(maybe Anasazi?)
Mississippian Native American cultures, including Cahokia 
The "Lost Tribes of Israel" (haven't made up my mind about this one yet)

This is just brainstorming, and will most likely change, if, as I stated in the title, I have time to work on it.


Chris Creel said...

There's a whole new year around to corner for us to apply our ideas in. I intend to try playing some Risus in 2012. Happy Holidays!

cleireac said...

You could set it up as a wiki, and make it a shared setting, where people would contribute....