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Author Topic: Epic r-mapping?  (Read 14910 times)
bastion-b
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« on: March 15, 2004, 11:28:33 PM »

First of all, I'm not sure if I'm posting in the right forum as the topic doesn't really directly relate to any actual play experience of my own. However, I'm sort of hoping for examples which I guess would classify as actual play so what the heck...

Anyways, I've been reading up a whole lot on protagonism, r-maps and all that other narrativist stuff and i think it matches my philosophy on roleplaying very well. I'm hoping to get a pretty massive, epic Midnight campaign (using the awesome system of Riddle of Steel) going sometime in the near future. I really want it to have the huge scope and feel of Lord of the Rings and other big fantasy series, which is something I have never really, no matter how much I've tried, been able to accomplish playing D&D or some such in the past. So I sat down trying to think of what makes these epic storylines really work, and how they're able to keep the plot interesting page after page. Then I thought of all the stuff I had recently read about protagonism, and realized that was probably the key to why I had been unsuccesful in creating engaging stories in this genre before. I've never really used it at all. It was just a big series of preplanned adventures which I guess didn't make the players feel engaged or comitted to the story because they hadn't been part of creating it. I mean, it's not that we didn't have tons of fun playing them, they just never reached the level I was aiming for but perhaps I never just the right gun in the first place?

- Enough god damn ranting, get to the point you stupid swede!

Oh sorry...I guess what my question really surmounts to is if anyone have used protagonist thecniques (especially r-maps) to create successful big epic stories LotR-style? If so, do you have any pointers or tips for me right now while I'm in the planning stage, or any for when the game actually starts for that matter?

And again, if I'm posting this in the wrong forum please tell me so.
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Halzebier
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« Reply #1 on: March 16, 2004, 01:59:05 AM »

Quote from: bastion-b
I guess what my question really surmounts to is if anyone have used protagonist thecniques (especially r-maps) to create successful big epic stories LotR-style? If so, do you have any pointers or tips for me right now while I'm in the planning stage, or any for when the game actually starts for that matter?


I haven't, but I have one tentative suggestion nonetheless:

Have relationships develop slowly, i.e. have some time (in-game, at the very least) pass between meaningful social encounters with the same constellation of characters - otherwise relationships might be resolved too quickly to fit an epic feel.

Regards,

Hal
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DannyK
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« Reply #2 on: March 16, 2004, 10:03:45 AM »

To get that Epic feeling, I think the events have to be really momentous, both for the people and for the places involved.  To use LotR as an example, the events in the story are the central ones for almost everyone involved:
    -Aragorn becomes king and gets his sword fixed
    -Frodo has his quest, and sails West with the Elves
    -Gandalf ditto
    -Gollum gets his precious back, and dies
    -Boromir falters, then redeems himself with a heroic death
    -the various kingdoms of Middle Earth are restored, reunited, delivered from the oppressor, and so on
    [/list:u]

    Basically, the events in LotR are pretty much the most important events that will ever happen to those people and those places.  When it's all done, the age is over.  

    I think you can get that effect in an RPG, but it's not easy; you need to have players who are willing to throw themselves into the role, and who are capable of that kind of larger-than-life action; I think you also have to be willing, as a GM, to allow the PC's to absolutely be the most important thing in the game world, and to allow them to bend and break the setting as necessary.  

    As far as R-Maps go: I honestly don't know how to make an "epic R-Map", but I suspect it has something to do with turning the emotional dials up to 11.  It might be worthwhile to try making R-maps from some actual epics, though.  

    Danny
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Ron Edwards
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« Reply #3 on: March 16, 2004, 02:23:11 PM »

Hello,

As far as I can tell, "epics" are composed of many episodes, some overlapping in time and some not.

Each episode tends to have its own relationship map. Sometimes these are linked among one another in map-terms either directly or indirectly (Njal's Saga, The Iliad), and sometimes they aren't especially (The Lord of the Rings).

What does matter is that outcomes from each episode reinforce, parallel, cause, or interconnect among one another. The climactic simultaneity among the various locales in The Lord of the Rings is one example. The linear chain of court cases, romances, and fights spread over many years in Njal's Saga is another.

So I wouldn't suggest beginning with an enormous sprawling relationship map and saying "This is the basis for my epic." Instead, go by situations and scenarios, each with its own relationship map, large or small. Let kin/sex connections among them evolve, but most importantly, let interconnecting cause among them develop and deliver major impact, as play proceeds.

This is exactly how I GM'd the sprawling, surging content of our HeroQuest (then 'Wars) game. You could consider the three primary player-characters, plus their dozen-odd closely-associated NPCs, plus their ~45 loosely-associated NPCs, as the "core." Then the maps any of these belonged to or encountered included, ultimately, literally hundreds of individuals.

To have begun with this bewildering diversity of relationships (even just counting the kin/sex ones) would truly have entailed the efforts of that genius, selfless GM who gets lauded by so many game texts. However, that guy is not me. Instead, I just kept working with the outcomes of scenarios on the assumption that they would have impacts on later scenarios, and I just kept introducing "isolated" maps in new scenarios and seeing connections form and break, form and break, as time went by.

Best,
Ron
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Eero Tuovinen
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« Reply #4 on: March 16, 2004, 03:48:47 PM »

Quote from: bastion-b

Oh sorry...I guess what my question really surmounts to is if anyone have used protagonist thecniques (especially r-maps) to create successful big epic stories LotR-style? If so, do you have any pointers or tips for me right now while I'm in the planning stage, or any for when the game actually starts for that matter?


Well, I've done heroic epics for a while now, so I should have some insight. I haven't used relationship maps exactly, but that's just because I do my prep work in my head :)

An important feeling, legendary adventure is created as a sum of many different factors. I'll list what comes to mind right now:
    character protagonism[/list:u]
    I don't know what's the exact relationship of this to the actual feel, to tell the truth. My games have always been big on players forming the course of play and story centering on their characters, but I fail to see what the connection is on the general level.
    Pacing[/list:u]
    As Ron already intimated, the epic tale is written in little, compact scenarios. Think LotR: it is built from some four or five sequentially growing arcs that bind the thing together. Compare with cosmic fantasy, for example Moorcock in the eternal hero mode: although ancient gods and basic principles of nature are repealed right and left, you don't get the same feel of importance. This is a mistake modern writers commonly make when trying for epic fantasy. Start slow and reasonable.
    Scale[/list:u]
    Pace the scale of the thing as well. This is essentially the same as above, just from the other side. Consider any great epic, and you'll see that it's about individuals, in essentially common situations (with great props, admittedly). Compare new testament to old testament, if you will: the latter is in many places a chronicle, not an epic, and that's a different form altogether.
    Social focus[/list:u]
    Heroism is about social relations, ultimately. You get the heroic moment essentially when a character is acknowledged as a hero. Yes, this usually happens afterwards. If your game is about action, it's very hard to be really epic in the literary style (you'll have to do a movie epic, which is a wholly different animal). Rather, focus on the preliminaries, personal conflicts and the reaction of the other people. Remember, what's called heroism is most commonly motivated by peer pressure or search for acceptance (the same thing, really); you'll need to make these things real for it to matter. Like the great leaders of Middle-Earth all taking the little hobbit seriously because he has the Ring. It might seem trite, but the victory celebrations is really the place where the players get the feel for heroism, if you have made the conflict properly felt.
    Conflict[/list:u]
    The nature of your main conflict isn't very imporant, as long as it is foreshadowed and masticated properly. And make it painful, that's important. Make the characters suffer, if not the players. Sacrifice is important, because that'll make the players take the celebrations seriously. Rob them of sacrifice, and you rob their heroism as well.
    Hero group dynamics[/list:u]
    Make the choice of heroism individual and free. It's exactly the wrong way to go about things to decide that the characters are/will be heroes. You get grander epic by aggreeing with your players about the game being about heroes, and then letting them free. This is an important thing to understand: usually you'll get only one hero. It's one of the great lies roleplaying designers feed us, that everyone can be, should be and will be a hero, equally. This' no heroism, but empty movements. Rather what you should do is scenario design:
    Scenario design[/list:u]
    Heroism in a narrativist frame is about designing situations that allow for characters to seize heroism by the horns through sacrifice and hard choices. Design accordingly. Accept that some players will fail to make the choice, becoming sidekicks. Accept that some will make the "wrong" choice, and become the villains of the piece. These are all-imporant roles your hero(es)
needs filled, and belong to the same theme. You don't make heroism, just a situation that has potential to turn heroic if a character is brave enough.

These are all factors that are needed to produce epic in the sense of Odyssey, LotR and Kullervo. It's personal conflict, sacrifice and social relations transforming in the process of becoming a hero. There are other forms called heroic, like superhero action in the style of Exalted, but they are built from different components.

How to apply these to preparation? I'm singularly the wrong person to say: my current heroic campaign, for example, has been largely improvised in the spot. I didn't know at the start that the characters would fight for a foreign people in war against Iranian demigods. Not that this doesn't mean I don't do it deliberately, but it does mean that my way isn't the easiest possible. I cannot make the mistake of overplanning the thing, though, so it all comes balanced in the end.

When designing you relationship map, leave the characters out of it, or place them in the periphery. You don't ultimately want the choices of allegiance to be prescripted by blood relations or such, so if you build your map around the protagonists you just ensure that the map breaks quite spectacularly, or there happens no heroism at all ("I'll kill them because father told me to." isn't heroism). Instead you want your map to confront the characters as outsiders, letting them view it in a perspective of the outsider, the Nietzchean hero.

Strike at philosophical underpinnings of the character's life. This means building situations where the character has a choice to make. Every character has morals, and you have to test them constantly to differentiate between the wheat and the chaff and the mold of villainy. An example to illustrate:
Raistlin, a promising young wizard, sells his soul to an old bastard for power.
Now, you probably are familiar with that example. Let's restructure it as a game situation:
The character gets the change of either [dying/sacrificing his sister/crawling like a dog/something hard] or gaining great power at the cost of [his soul/a dark allegiance/murder/something evil].
It's not any more complex than that (well, it is, but there's at most half a dozen of these heroic formulas. Find them and use them). When I last used this a character willingly became the disciple of the dark serpent Bahran-Arjan (one of those Iranian demigods), while another was guided to destroy said serpent. An epic (in the movie sense) conversation followed on the windy cliffs of the beach, ending in the ultimate confrontation between two companions. The heroic part came when the cliffs caught fire from the errant elementalism of our Raistlin wannabe, and the other character desided to save his sorry skin despite his own third degree burns. Heroism? Certainly, but tempered with the angst of our hero fighting a lone battle against the unknown horrors. I'll be upping the ante before the summer break by giving our heroes social recognition for their works...

Always leave it sufficiently open what a character should do. The reason we don't see heroism in simulationist play is that the simulationist has a very developed sense of "what my character would do". This is escaping the decision, and produces no heroism.
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Lisa Padol
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« Reply #5 on: March 16, 2004, 03:53:53 PM »

Read lots of epics.

Seriously. And look at how the r-maps work in them.

Fr'ex, in Lord of the Rings, Frodo is related to Bilbo, Pippin, and Merry. And these are upper class hobbits. Pippin and Merry become the heads of their respective clans. Galadriel is Aragorn's grandmother. The ties of blood and kinship between Gondor and Rohan are centuries old. Denethor married Theoden's sister, as I recall. The Boromir/Faramir relationship and the brothers' relationship with their father -- look at the stuff that, um, underpins it? That's not necessarily what a smart 10 year old sees on a first reading, but what you get later, re-reading and looking at the family trees.

Look at the Icelandic sagas, especially if they've got decent intros explaining the family tree stuff. Egils Saga turns on a long inheritance dispute based on, if I recall, at least one non-standard marriage that means the other side of the family denies inheritance to the first.

If you combine this with Ron's advice to start small, look at some of the Greek plays or at some incidents in the long Trojan war and aftermath -- Do an r-map of Agammemnon's family. Even if you ignore his brother and Helen, you get Agamemmnon, married to Clytemnestra. They have 3 kids. (He killed one.) Both have lovers. (She and hers killed him. Then, her kids killed her.) Small, tight, and soaked in blood.

Take the stories apart and see how they work. Change the names and some of the details, and pretend you're plugging them into your campaign. If you like the result, really plug one in and see how it works.

-Lisa
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clehrich
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« Reply #6 on: March 16, 2004, 09:53:42 PM »

Quote from: Eero Tuovinen
Heroism is about social relations, ultimately. You get the heroic moment essentially when a character is acknowledged as a hero. Yes, this usually happens afterwards. If your game is about action, it's very hard to be really epic in the literary style (you'll have to do a movie epic, which is a wholly different animal). Rather, focus on the preliminaries, personal conflicts and the reaction of the other people. Remember, what's called heroism is most commonly motivated by peer pressure or search for acceptance (the same thing, really); you'll need to make these things real for it to matter. Like the great leaders of Middle-Earth all taking the little hobbit seriously because he has the Ring. It might seem trite, but the victory celebrations is really the place where the players get the feel for heroism, if you have made the conflict properly felt.
While I agree, I think it's important to add that in RPG's, this can happen when the players celebrate the heroic action.  This can be used to provoke tragic heroism, where some guy does something grand and heroic that saves the world, and nobody even knows.  If LotR were an RPG, it would be possible to have Frodo and Sam destroyed by the lava coming out of Orodruin.  That would be tragic and horrible, of course, but it could be very satisfying because the players know it's happening.

In the Greek model, you (bastion) might take a look at The Odyssey.  Eero's points apply perfectly, because most of those adventures are told to an audience.  If you did it as an RPG, they would be played instead, which would amount to the same thing.  The lonely hero who dies alone and forgotten can be wrenching; the lonely hero who comes back at the last minute and is celebrated can be tremendously moving.

As to Lisa's points about r-maps, a good way to do this would be to look for a summary of the Trojan War and its aftermath, most especially a complete edition of Aeschylus's Oresteia with a family tree.  Boy howdy, everybody's related to everybody, everybody loves and hates everybody, the tension is wound to the nth degree, and by the end there's blood everywhere.  Not Scandinavian epic, of course, but epic nonetheless.

Chris Lehrich
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Chris Lehrich
Lisa Padol
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« Reply #7 on: March 17, 2004, 01:18:36 PM »

Or take a look at the Odyssey, both for an interesting note about the family tree and a way to start small and branch out. I mean, you've got Telemachus having adventures and Odysseus having adventures, but everything starts on one small island -- your basic group of adventurers exploring the world. Well, the metaphor's strained, but there's a kernel of truth in it.

Now, Odysseus is married to Penelope, and their son is Telemachus. Odysseus' father, Laertes, is still alive. That's the basic r-map.

When I was reading the Odyssey, parts of it, at least, in the original Homeric Greek, my professor pointed out an interesting thing. Odysseus is gone for 20 years. His son, Telemachus, is not ruling the island. Okay, the boy was a baby, but even when he grows up, he is not ruling. Odysseus' father, Laertes, is not ruling. He's living a simple life.

Penelope is sought after by many suitors. They aren't telling either her father or her son to chose her a new husband. They're beseiging her.

Professor Kizner said that while this did not indicate a matriarchy, it did indicate a) that Penelope was ruling the island in her husband's absence, at least to the degree that anyone was and b) that the culture was matrilineal. The king was whoever married Penelope.

-Lisa
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Lisa Padol
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« Reply #8 on: March 17, 2004, 02:29:03 PM »

Oh, and don't forget the Bible, especially OT. Look at the story of Joseph. Then tell me:

1. When Joseph's brothers first go to Egypt to ask for food, why is Simeon the one Joseph throws into prison?

2. Why does Joseph frame Benjamin for theft? No, it's not to test his brothers or to punish them. (Yes, that's a valid Rabbinic Interpretation, but look at what's going on, and check out the section on Joseph and his brothers getting born.)

Serious r-map turf.

Oh, yes, Ron recommended Tanith Lee's Cyrion as a good pulp source for Sorcerer. Look at a couple of her stories for r-maps.

-Lisa
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MPOSullivan
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« Reply #9 on: March 18, 2004, 01:55:17 AM »

i've been working on a role-playing game lately that kinda hinges on the idea on running a campaign based on the Saga framework, i.e.: starts with a small, close-knit group of people, normally a family, and follows along with them as they go through drastic change, normally related to some kind of war.  there are other staples and trademarks as well: mythical creatures, beautiful women, gigantic battles, all of that fun stuff.

from my readings of various different sagas (The Previous mentioned Iliad, Oddysey, Beowulf, etc.) as well as some research into the life of Alexander the Great for an entirely different project (thus i've read alot of histories, by the likes of Arryan, Aristotle, etc.) i've noticed that an r-map would work great for any gaming done in Epic style, but one modified, pretty much as Ron lays it down.

i would also suggest some kind of Motivation or Passions mechanic.  Most of the time the characters in Sagas or Epics act because of their beliefs and passions.  Paris stole Helen because of his love of her beauty, as well as his straight-out immaturity and in-born rebeliousness (i don't know if that's a word, but it'll work).  Achilles entered into battle, knowing full well that he would die in it, because of his belief that glory was worth the sacrifice (something that was a major part of Hellenistic culture, especially post-Homer and during the reign of Alexander).

Characters in epics then, as i've noticed anyway (and anyone can add to this/shoot this down if they like), are defined by two things.  First, their relationships, whether they be to their family, friends, fellow soldiers, or even enemies.  Second is beliefs and passions.  This can include anything from piety, angerand valor to immaturity, lustfulness,  etc.  These passions are both positive and negative traits and some act in accordance with the Shakespearean Fatal Flaw or Character Flaw, being a built in downfall for a character that is established right at the outset.

An epic tale itslef is defined first by its scope, being very damned large and covering lots of ideas.  Epics are also noted for their length, as they are normally ambitious and far-reaching, sometimes going generational.  Finally, Epics also have an incredible attention to detail.  They can be very precise, sometimes being such a slave to detail as to note the way every damned platoon moves in every battle of a campaign, or the type of furniture can be found in a person's house and describing even who made it.  You will want to pay particular attention to your setting wehn working on your game as this is the easiest way to drum up a whole bunch of details without having to do a whole lot of work.  This is also why many Epics read episodically, for the detail in each story was so great that you had to break things down into smaller chunks for easier digestion.  (not to mention the fact that most early Epics and Sagas were told and not read, and as such couldn't be too long, otherwise the storyteller woul dforget bits and pieces.)

The detail thing is the one that most people miss when doing an epic.  they design a huge storyline, but fail to fill in all of the space they leave wthin it.  It winds up like an empty balloon.  i've seen many a campaign that aimed for Epic and simply got large and unweildy with no character.

Games i would suggest taking a look at for good rules and mechanics ideas are HeroQuest (for the relationships system they have, as well as pretty much everything else since that game was made to be ran as an Epic), Riddle of Steel (for the ever-influential Spiritual Attributes) and Pendragon (for the attention to detail).

Hey, how come no one has ever made an RPG set during the war with Troy?  The Iliad is like the biggest source for cool gaming crap in the world and no one has ever done it.  hm...  

and, shouldn't this be moved over to RPG Theory?  I know it started out with the question of whether any of us have ever used Epic-emulating mechanics or whatever in gameplay, but the convo seems to have evolved a little.  makes more sense there.  just an idea...

alright, end of babbling.
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Michael P. O'Sullivan
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John Kim
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« Reply #10 on: March 18, 2004, 10:48:58 AM »

Quote from: Zathreyel
i've been working on a role-playing game lately that kinda hinges on the idea on running a campaign based on the Saga framework, i.e.: starts with a small, close-knit group of people, normally a family, and follows along with them as they go through drastic change, normally related to some kind of war.  there are other staples and trademarks as well: mythical creatures, beautiful women, gigantic battles, all of that fun stuff.

I guess I should chime in here with some experiences from my Vinland campaign.  It's been running for two and a half years, with 51 sessions, and I think it has gone extremely well.  It's very much based on sagas -- but specifically on the Icelandic historical sagas, with not so much over-the-top stuff as the Odyssey or the Trojan War.  (My biggest influence was the Laxdaela saga, I think.)  

Anyhow, as far as r-maps, the thing I note is that I produced some rough family trees, and then players picked people within branches of the family trees.  I had used this for a few previous games, notably my Oneiros game in college (1990-91).  I know that some people use r-maps as relations between NPCs, with the PCs being outside.  Instead, I had always thought of families as a good PC connection.  

My logic has generally been that friendships or partnerships aren't as good for bonds between PCs, because these things can turn out differently than intended or simply change during play.  In contrast, family is something you are stuck with.  So PCs can go in whatever direction as characters, and there is still a bond to keep the PCs together.  To take an example from my campaign: Poul and Kjartan have been nearly at each others throats for a while, but Kjartan is Poul's nephew.  

I have a bunch of stuff up on the web about it at http://www.darkshire.net/~jhkim/rpg/vinland/campaign/

Quote from: Zathreyel
 i would also suggest some kind of Motivation or Passions mechanic.  Most of the time the characters in Sagas or Epics act because of their beliefs and passions.  Paris stole Helen because of his love of her beauty, as well as his straight-out immaturity and in-born rebeliousness (i don't know if that's a word, but it'll work).  Achilles entered into battle, knowing full well that he would die in it, because of his belief that glory was worth the sacrifice (something that was a major part of Hellenistic culture, especially post-Homer and during the reign of Alexander).  

Hmmm.  Opinions differ on this -- though I'm not sure what it corresponds to on this.  Some people seem to enjoy them and find that they help.  I certainly agree that people (whether in epics or not) act because of their beliefs and passions.  However, I don't find that motivation/passion mechanics help achieve that for my own games (whether as player or GM).  

Quote from: Zathreyel
An epic tale itslef is defined first by its scope, being very damned large and covering lots of ideas.  Epics are also noted for their length, as they are normally ambitious and far-reaching, sometimes going generational.  Finally, Epics also have an incredible attention to detail.  They can be very precise, sometimes being such a slave to detail as to note the way every damned platoon moves in every battle of a campaign, or the type of furniture can be found in a person's house and describing even who made it.
...
The detail thing is the one that most people miss when doing an epic.  they design a huge storyline, but fail to fill in all of the space they leave wthin it.  It winds up like an empty balloon.  i've seen many a campaign that aimed for Epic and simply got large and unweildy with no character.  

Hmmm.  OK, I really should write up this old thread into something more coherent, but your mention of scope and detail really evokes the methodology I talk about in http://www.indie-rpgs.com/viewtopic.php?t=6178">Plotless but Background-based Games.  Vinland is very high detail, aided by the copious session notes which have evolved to be absolutely crucial to play.  Last time I realized I had lost the session notes and never written it up, and it took a while just to catch up.  I would suggest that someone really has to do this job for an epic campaign.
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- John
MPOSullivan
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« Reply #11 on: March 18, 2004, 06:00:48 PM »

heya guys,

the thread seems to be wandering a bit from it's original intent, to discuss the use of a Relationship Map in Epic Roleplaying.  i've posted an off-shoot of this thread over in the RPG theory section over here to further discuss the wider ideas of Epic Roleplaying that we've started touching on in here.  (I always feel bad when i pull a thread off-topic.)  This is a topic that really piqued my interrest and i'd really like to dig my hands deep into the meat of it.  give it a look and if you have an ideas that you want to discuss further, maybe pop 'em up over there.
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Michael P. O'Sullivan
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bastion-b
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Posts: 11


« Reply #12 on: March 19, 2004, 06:50:32 AM »

I just want to thank each and everyone of you for all the awesome input. You've given me lots of new ideas on how to develop the campaign and try to get what I want out of it. I've allready read some of the Icelandic epics you mentioned and agree that they certainly do have some useful stuff for this purpose. The bible however,  feels a little scary, I've never really read anything from it before so I would like to know exactly where to start to get those interesting things and try to avoid all the boring crap ;-)

Anyway, thanks again for all the great pointers and ideas!
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Lisa Padol
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Posts: 365


« Reply #13 on: March 19, 2004, 07:49:07 AM »

Okay, just answering the specific question about where to start with the Bible. Read the Joseph story, like I said. Email me if you guess the answer to the questions I posted.

The whole Cain and Abel thing, of course. And back up from Joseph a couple of generations.

Gonna wander over to the other thread started for r-maps and epics.

-Lisa
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Valamir
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« Reply #14 on: March 19, 2004, 09:12:09 AM »

The story of Noah, is a fabulous place to start.  

Forget the flood stuff from sunday school, that's boring...the real good stuff starts after the flood.  Noah's got one freaking dysfunctional family going on, perfect for R-Maping.

And what makes it epic is this just isn't any family, this is the family that is the progenitors for pretty much all future civilizations.  I mean, Noah's grandson is Canaan for crying out loud.  No, not from Canaan...he isCanaan...the dude the land of Canaan is named after and Canannites are decendent from.  Shem's, the progenitor of all Semitic people.

That's epic.  These individuals are proxies for entire civilizations, and their fucked up family is illustrative of how fucked up civilization will become.

And this level of fucked-up-ness comes AFTER the "cleansing of the world" and destruction of all the world's sinners to purify everything down to just the good and noble Noah, and his good and noble family.

I mean, the bible is basically illustrating why mankind is doomed to be a complete mess.  God reboots the world down to just one sinless man and his family, and within a single generation its all messed up again.

That's epic.


Other good bible parts are the list of begats.
No, the begats aren't boring.

Map them, go ahead, map the geneology of the begats, and make notes about what it says about these people.  We're talking the people who invented bronze and music and a bunch of other stuff.  A relationship map that includes the guy who INVENTED music!

That's epic.
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