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Author Topic: Orkworld... die like a pig!  (Read 2739 times)

Posts: 432

« on: June 11, 2001, 11:11:00 AM »

Okay, the title may have been misleading.  What I meant was that my character died like a true ork last Thursday.  While I have you here, let me spin you the brief yarn before delving into the reasons and logics behind the death.

"Metallurgy 101: Iron vs. Bronze"
-By Dav Harnish

Okay, the whole scene needs to be set.  Give me a moment to put my game face on.

Here we go.

Let me just begin by saying that I never trusted humans.  They stink, they worship the sun, and they seem afraid of anything they can't kill.  In short, I find little difference between humans and dogs.

However, our dowmga, Zamnasty, had a more 'enlightened' approach.  She thought humans were fiesty little upstarts that were ripe for the picking.  We thwacked 'em.  We thwacked 'em good.  The details are irrelevant.  Suffice to say, we had divided their tribe and managed to 'negotiate' sleeping arrangements in one of their better hunting areas.

All good things...

These humans, less dependent upon the rigors and tools of normal humans, were similar to orks in garb and practicality.  Think of an ork, put it in a bowl, mash it together with a human.  Cook for 30 minutes.  Cool.  Bingo.  Primitive, odd little ducks that named themselves after animals (odd, but I've stopped questioning humans long ago).

Long story short (my friend wants to get lunch and I am hungry).  The Roman Empire crests upon us (the Sun Empire... but think Roman if you are unfamiliar with Orkworld).  They talk to the primitive human tribe, and we must flee.  We know this.  We do this.

We are not fast enough.

Somewhere between the allosaurus (which we had previously removed an eye from, which made it unlikely we could expect quarter from the beast) and the troll swamp, the company of humans caught up to us.  Our whole tribe.  All 14 of us.

I, as a dowmga, protect the young.  Our warriors meet the mounted humans on their iron armor and discover something right keen.  Iron will beat the hell out of bronze any day.  Especially that day.  Boy howdy.

We die.  Still, of the twenty warriors, we manage to take a few with us (5 or 6, and a whole passel of horses).  One ork child escapes.  

You see, my ork, the dowmga Woodawggi, had decided to take a dive into the swamp with the last surviving child.  Little did I know that trolls are amphibious.  And the paralyze you.  And their tails must be titanium reinforced.  And they like to eat orks.  And they won't negotiate.  And I am dead.

The ork child I jump into the water with manages to hide with the bodies and escape from the swamp days later to be raised by a human woman named Goat (I told you they were weird).  It was actually a great ending to the ork legend as we flash forward 200 years, where orks are no more, and remembered in tales as vile murderers.  Except for one pagan sect, far off in the mountains, who recall a different history to the orks.

Good ending.  John couldn't have written it better himself.

So, herein lies the rub, however.  We were dead going into this run.  We had a vague understanding that this would be difficult.  But six orks armed with bronze spears against ten light horses and ten heavy infantry outfitted like all hell is not a fight.  It is a massacre.  They caught us and butchered us.  

Now, were we railroaded?  Um, yes.  But was it done with flair?  Hell yes.  Do I have a sneaking suspicion that if the group would have thought of some brilliant solution that defied and amazed Ron that we would have lived?  Yes, I do.

Does Narrativism, in this light, seem to decree that at times there is only one solution to make the story work?  Debatable, but no.  We find ourselves in a situation where the default is death, but not the absolute.  Quirky in a way.  Discuss.  Dish.  Talk.  I must eat.  More later.


John Wick

Posts: 210

« Reply #1 on: June 12, 2001, 09:23:00 AM »

Great story.

You died well. There ain't no shame in that.
Glad you had fun.

Take care,


Carpe Deum,

Posts: 550

« Reply #2 on: June 15, 2001, 09:08:00 AM »

I do not think that narrativism demands a "one right way."  It does demand people willing to make the story work.  One of the required features is a GM who is flexible.  Another requirement is quick-wittedness on the part of the players and the GM.  Given those two, a reasonable story can be had where neither the end nor the route to the end are fixed.

As for the death thing, that's something I wish came out more in games.  I'd rather have my Deadlands gunslinger die a messy but glorious death than have his story just sort of stop being told.  Given a messy death, he will live on in memory; if we just stop telling his story, he's as dead as can be.

Clay Dowling
RPG-Campaign.com - Online Campaign Planning and Management
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