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Author Topic: Nine Worlds intro & layout-in-progress  (Read 4142 times)
Matt Snyder
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« on: May 15, 2003, 09:09:11 AM »

I've been working more on Nine Worlds. Specifically, I've been working on the book layout, which is coming together quite nicely. Here's a sample of the work-in-progress:

Layout-in-progress

It's about half finished. There will be more "clouds" motif going up outside margin toward the "column". Also, I've got the stars to scatter about where I want them, but I need to layer those so they appear behind and in front of other elements to give the whole thing more depth. I've drawn these elements in Adobe Illustrator, using heavy inspriration from Nine Worlds art by Eric Lofgren (specifcally, the Underworld and Chimera pics). I'll then save the marginalia as EPS files and import the images into a layout in Quark. The book will be 7x8.5 inches (half letter sheet), which has a nice, unusual feel from the standard letter sizes, but is still quite manageable for common laser printing. I'll redo the layout in letter size for the PDF version as well. First thing's first, though.

I've also been working on the text, of course. It's been a struggle to find the right voice, but it's starting to settle in. Here's the book's introduction"

Quote
There exist among mortals individuals who remain ignorant of their power. These men and women work and play upon the nations of Earth, guided by what they know and what they've experienced in life. They may ask questions about their world. They may pray to divine powers. They may doubt. They may pretend they don't care about it all. Like all mortals on earth, they exist in a lie. Their world is an illusion crafted of science and ignorance and faith and dreams made almost-real.

But, there are moments of grace and fortune in their lives that they cannot explain with what they have lived and learned. These moments are crucial points in their lives. They are the decisions that shape who and what these individuals are, whether by loss or by gain. So it goes for all of humanity, ever struggling with its mortality to win or lose or simply to live well.

Yet for these individuals there is a difference. They do not experience fortune. The cause it. The do not answer to fate. They guide it, one moment at a time. These few possess a grace and power they do not yet comprehend. They are Archons, and they possess the power to shape the universe.

So they continue living a lie. Everything they know is wrong. The world is not the place they thought it was. Until one day a man -- or what appears to be a man -- shows up in their lives and peels back the illusion of the universe as they know it. He shows them a passage to experience worlds they've never known.

He explains to these often-skeptical individuals that he is Prometheus, the Titan of ancient myth. He reveals a universe governed by immortals, the gods and titans they know from myths and legends. He unveils the Nine Worlds, and shows them vistas of hidden worlds they never imagined existed outside the fanciful minds of thinkers and dreamers.

But, there remain some things Prometheus cannot show them, some things he cannot unmask. These newly awakened Archons may have a new worldview and awareness of their power, but their hearts and minds remain very much the same. There are greater truths they cannot answer knowing that the sun is a golden city or that Hades imprisons the dead. They are mortals who love and hate, who dream and lust, and who cheat and avenge. They are fallible men and women with a fabulous gift. They have the power to change the way things are. They can judge for themselves what is virtuous and what is good. And, though mortal, they can execute that judgement just as the gods can.

With all their power to shape the universe, to bend and break the rules as they desire, the Archons possess no great power to answer: Should they?

On that question, Prometheus provides little insight; he offers no spark of inspiration. He can, for reasons of his own, only show the Archons the journey. He knows nothing of the destination.


Progress!
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Matt Snyder
www.chimera.info

"The future ain't what it used to be."
--Yogi Berra
Valamir
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« Reply #1 on: May 15, 2003, 09:52:12 AM »

I like the layout.  In addition to layers to provide depth you might want to shade some of them.

Are you going to use sidebars in places and then just use that side bar graphic on pages where you don't have any sidebar text?  If not...you might have people criticisizing the wasted space.
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Matt Snyder
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« Reply #2 on: May 15, 2003, 10:16:13 AM »

That column in the outside margin (the one w/ the "Nine Worlds" vertical text) will remain on everypage. It'll have a bit more graphical treatment, especially in the circle area at the top.

Sidebars in the game text will fall into place in one or two columns of text (where the large dark rectangles appear now). To be sure, whitespace won't be an issue -- rather the opposite is likely to be a problem. Overdone with distracting elements. I'm keeping this in mind!
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Matt Snyder
www.chimera.info

"The future ain't what it used to be."
--Yogi Berra
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« Reply #3 on: May 15, 2003, 05:30:44 PM »

YAY!!

One question: why did you decide to do away with Demiurges? Did Archons roll off the tongue easier?
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Matt Snyder
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« Reply #4 on: May 15, 2003, 07:02:22 PM »

Archons does indeed roll of the tongue more easily, and it's quite appropriate given all-things-greek (archons were something like nobles with power/judgment in ancient Athens).

However, the Demiurge remains. It's just that individuals aren't commonly called "Demiurgists." Doing so is appropriate, however. Think of the Demiurge as the collective unconscious of all the Archons, who "vote" how the Demiurge shapes the universe by making decisions about changing the world piece by piece.
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Matt Snyder
www.chimera.info

"The future ain't what it used to be."
--Yogi Berra
Kester Pelagius
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« Reply #5 on: May 16, 2003, 07:58:21 PM »

Greetings Matt,

Quote from: Matt Snyder
Archons does indeed roll of the tongue more easily, and it's quite appropriate given all-things-greek (archons were something like nobles with power/judgment in ancient Athens).


Judges.  Rulers.  Lords.

Archon, in biblical translation, is equivalent in meaning to Elohim.  (See Strong's Concordance.)  Though the word could have varied meaning based upon time period, but your "something like" is actually quite spot on.  FYI.

Quote from: Matt Snyder
However, the Demiurge remains. It's just that individuals aren't commonly called "Demiurgists." Doing so is appropriate, however. Think of the Demiurge as the collective unconscious of all the Archons, who "vote" how the Demiurge shapes the universe by making decisions about changing the world piece by piece.


Or, in transliteration, Demiourgos.  (Roughly meaning "craftsman", which is neither here nor there.  Just trivia.)  Very spot on.  Well done.

Will you be listing a resource bibliography?

A mention of the appropriate Nag Hammadi texts couldn't hurt, or could it?

Happy Gaming!


Kind Regards,

Kester Pelagius
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"The darkest places in hell are reserved for those who maintain their neutrality in times of moral crisis." -Dante Alighieri
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« Reply #6 on: May 17, 2003, 07:20:00 AM »

While the layout looks eye-catching, and the flavor text has me salivating, I cannot help but wonder if the examples of play have been streamlined and given examples to show someone how to play this game, and what the victories mean. The last piece of the game we had gave examples of play that were abstract.

I am looking forward to seeing more. Do you have any examples of play available?
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Matt Snyder
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« Reply #7 on: May 17, 2003, 07:53:03 AM »

Don't have examples to show yet, S.F., but much more specific examples, as you've noted, will be in the game.
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Matt Snyder
www.chimera.info

"The future ain't what it used to be."
--Yogi Berra
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