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Purgatory Bay - open for critique

Started by btrc, April 27, 2008, 11:37:20 AM

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I'm usually known for my crunchy, simulationist work, which makes me feel like the odd man out here at the Forge (even if I do try to create social settings that require a bit of intellectual stretching). But sometimes I get odd ideas that do not fit into the "crunchy" model, and I get them at the oddest times. I recently woke up from a dream in which I was playing a setting and a system that upon awaking, I realized I'd never actually played before.

This has happened a few times, and when it does, I'm of course compelled to put the high points down on paper before it fades, and then polish it until it looks as much like I can remember it as possible. So, for any and all comments, this is the first draft of "Purgatory Bay":

It's only a few hundred kilobytes. It is a self-contained system and gameworld in 30-odd pages. I can see that it is still rough around the edges, but it suffices for a first draft in terms of content and presentation. This is -not- a public document, so please do not distribute the link or post it elsewhere.

I have -no- idea if the backstory or game system has been done elsewhere or in what form, I made a deliberate decision not to check. I can't say I'd be surprised either way, but I can -hope- it is fairly original. I can see a few scratch marks where I apparently filed the serial numbers off bits of Jonathan Tweet's "Over the Edge", but that's about it.

Greg Porter

P.S. And yes, I know where the ship image came from.


It's a compelling setting, but one possible inconsistency is bothering me.

It seems that a good fraction of the population of the dystopic Bay would want to be elsewhere.  It also seems that some fraction of worlds revealed by the waning Fog would be passable-to-nice.  Once one of these ok worlds was found, what's to prevent the Fogwalkers from holding hands with a bunch of people and leading them to the new zion?  Wouldn't the population of the Bay drop dramatically whenever this happened?  And that would remove the population pressure and the Lottery that makes the setting compelling in the first place...



That's a passably good point. I was sort of thinking that inertia and satisfaction with the status quo would keep a lot of people there. The sky is grey, but the weather is perfect, there is no war, and no one is going to kill you just because you're a pagan or a jew or a gnostic or whatever. All in all, socially it is comparable or better than most of the places you can visit through the Fog. Unless your mundane talents are worth a lot more "outside", why not stay? Many people may also feel a desire to stay based on the religious beliefs in Purgatory Bay.

But, if it turns out to be a problem, Fogwalking could be limited to Fogwalkers, and while they could take a boat, they couldn't take any non-Fogwalkers out on it.