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 Post subject: Moving beyond 2006
Unread postPosted: Mon Jun 16, 2014 8:31 pm
  

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Hero

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Nightbane is one of the few Palladium games where the timeline doesn't advance beyond the initial date set in the Corebook. True, we haven't had that many books published since the core came out in '95 or so... but since then we've moved nearly a decade beyond where the setting has been this entire time.

So, do you think it is time the setting progresses a little beyond the initial date? To show what has been going on.. the successes and failures the Factions have had against the Nightlords and their minions? To see what new plans the Nightlords have come up with... and any new threats that may have arisen for players to deal with?

We already know that President Douglas Carson will be running for a 3rd term in office in 2008... does he succeed... or will King Moloch create a new Avatar to become President? How have the various factions faired in the months or years we advance... any serious set backs (such as the efforts of the Nightlords to infiltrate and destroy the factions)? What of the demons gathering in Devil City... has the reasons for their presence been discovered... and by whom?

It is possible to advance the setting slowly and still maintain the current status-quo where the Nightlords remain in power yet have gotten no closer to their ultimate goal. Plots that could have given the Ba'al a significant advantage will likely have failed... as would any attempt by the factions to seriously undermine their power. Of course there could also be some significant successes too... perhaps a city becoming truly independent (though how it managed to do so could reveal that this isn't as good as it sounds).

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 Post subject: Re: Moving beyond 2006
Unread postPosted: Wed Jul 02, 2014 6:49 am
  

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Palladin

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Whether or not Carson wins re-election could depend on the campaign. PC actions might even influence it, depending on what they get involved with. It's fine if he wins in some camps and loses in others, since the divergent timelines can exist as separate histories per Transdimensional/Temporal precedent.

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 Post subject: Re: Moving beyond 2006
Unread postPosted: Wed Jul 02, 2014 11:03 pm
  

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Monk

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Comment: The Munchkin Fairy
I'm not entirely sure why a games timeline needs to advance. Isn't what happens after the starting point the subject of your own game? in which case, why does the starting timeline need to advance at all?

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 Post subject: Re: Moving beyond 2006
Unread postPosted: Thu Jul 03, 2014 11:36 pm
  

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Palladin

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I figure some of the attraction is due to not being everywhere at once.

Like for example in Rifts if someone spent a year in Africa fighting the Apocalypse demons, by the time they get to another setting, the book description would be about a year behind and the GM would have to figure out what changed since then.

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 Post subject: Re: Moving beyond 2006
Unread postPosted: Fri Jul 11, 2014 1:39 pm
  

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Monk

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Comment: The Munchkin Fairy
Tor wrote:
I figure some of the attraction is due to not being everywhere at once.

Like for example in Rifts if someone spent a year in Africa fighting the Apocalypse demons, by the time they get to another setting, the book description would be about a year behind and the GM would have to figure out what changed since then.


Major events rarely happen in a year, and the notion they do is more of a flaw in advancing game timelines than a pro. if something big happens, either it's part of your plot or everything is mostly normal. that's the point of having a static baseline. So you can always go "This is how things are, unless I specifically call out a change". an advancing timeline makes that considerably harder, not easier.

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You can have something done good, fast and cheap. If you want it done good and fast, it's not going to be cheap. If you want it done fast and cheap it won't be good. If you want something done good and cheap it won't be done fast. ~ Dark Brandon


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 Post subject: Re: Moving beyond 2006
Unread postPosted: Sat Jul 12, 2014 12:55 am
  

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Palladin

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How long did it take the Tarn posse to take out the Horsemen? My guess is under a year... I mean, really, if Rifts Africa took place at the same time as RMB, by the time you saved up enough to book transport from NA to Africa the fight might be over.

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 Post subject: Re: Moving beyond 2006
Unread postPosted: Tue Jul 22, 2014 7:38 pm
  

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Hero

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I guess my instinct has been to shift the begining forward. If I were to start a Nightbane Campaign I would assume that Darkday happened yesterday (or last year) not that it happend in 1995 ... Kind of like comicbook time. Really all I need to do is make the internet bigger and cell phones faster and what what else do you need to make up for the last twenty years ;-)

Honestly my reading of Nightbane is that the Earth is FUBAR and wouldn't make it 20 years


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 Post subject: Re: Moving beyond 2006
Unread postPosted: Wed Jul 23, 2014 9:03 pm
  

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Monk

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Comment: The Munchkin Fairy
Tor wrote:
How long did it take the Tarn posse to take out the Horsemen? My guess is under a year... I mean, really, if Rifts Africa took place at the same time as RMB, by the time you saved up enough to book transport from NA to Africa the fight might be over.


It takes however long the plot needs it to take, or however short. also under a year is very generous. africa is huge and they were not discribed as having universally modern transportation or nice even highways to go along to. One could just as easially say it'd take a year to just track down each horsemen individually, let alone kill them considering half of them have teleport magic.

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You can have something done good, fast and cheap. If you want it done good and fast, it's not going to be cheap. If you want it done fast and cheap it won't be good. If you want something done good and cheap it won't be done fast. ~ Dark Brandon


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 Post subject: Re: Moving beyond 2006
Unread postPosted: Thu Jul 31, 2014 5:35 am
  

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Palladin

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I figured in spite of knowing the spell there might be something blocking its use otherwise they could just port together as soon as their contacts told them where their friends were.

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 Post subject: Re: Moving beyond 2006
Unread postPosted: Fri Aug 01, 2014 7:12 pm
  

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Hero

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The Horsemen of the Apocalypse event from WB4 didn't take that long. We know that Erin Tarn arrived in England sometime around May of 103 PA (WB3) and that while at New Camelot they heard of the Horsemen (WB4). However, by the fall of that year (November at the latest), Erin Tarn and Victor Lazlo had journeyed to the New German Republic (WB5), presumably after the threat of the Horsemen had been dealt with.

Back in North America around this time, the events that would lead to the Juicer Uprising were well underway. Newtown has been a member of the Coalition for almost two years and tests on the Phoenix Chip that would prolong a Juicer's life were well underway (it would still be another year before the final tests were finished, but already there was a fair amount of data on the project). Between March of 105 and the autumn of that same year, the Juicer Uprising will have occurred... and by the year's end, the Coalition will have unveiled its new War Machine and officially declared war on both Tolkeen and Free Quebec. The legendary city of Psyscape would also return to Earth by the end of that same year.

What is the point of all this? Simply put... events do not wait for players to arrive before they happen. It doesn't happen with Rifts and it shouldn't happen in Nightbane either. We have at least 3 Nightlords and their Avatars operating within North America alone, each with at least a few different plots to exterminate humanity on the go at the same time in various parts of the continent. There is no realistic way that a single group of players is going to be able to stop all the plots when they are all happening at more or less the same time.

Add to this mix plots by other threats like Vampires and even the other Factions and you have a lot happening that the players are not likely to see... at least not unless you dumb down everyone so that only a single plot is going at ay one time despite all the people involved. Is Lilith really going to hold off making a deal with the demon lords in Devil's City while Lord Magog infiltrates the Resistance with his disguised Avatar. is it likely that King Moloch will hold off on involving the US in his new "mini-Vietnam" type conflicts while Lilith plants subliminal messages throughout the media to turn people into potential serial killers?

Realistically... no, this isn't likely. They are all likely to proceed with their plans at more or less the same time, making it impossible for a single group of players to thwart all their efforts. Does this mean those plans that the players don't stop will succeed? Maybe... depending on the group and the desires of the GM.

Even so... it seems unlikely that all the pieces that will be used to determine the outcome of this war are already in play. There are likely some unknown factors what have yet to make an appearance or are trying to stay out of the coming storm (and need to be brought in by the players). How realistic is it to keep adding more and more new factions and threats to the mix in the span of a single year (or rather a single day as the setting itself doesn't actually progress beyond what was initially presented).

It has taken at least 4 years for things to have progressed to the point where the initial setting starts. While I can agree that individual groups will have gone in directions that may not reflect what a new book presents should it advance the setting forward in time... such a book can still provide insight into what was likely to happen. It may even provide ideas on where to go next... even if it takes a little work to bring it into a current game. On the other hand, it would also provide a new launching point for a new game... one set further into the setting than the initial setting starts.

Had Rifts used a static setting where the events don't progress beyond the initial setting, we would have lost a lot of the rich flavor that makes it one of the most unique settings around. Erin Tarn would still be lost somewhere in the Megaverse (or presumed dead). The Coalition would still be seen as a paper tiger... all bark with very little bite. Tolkeen would still exist in a state of perpetual preparation for war (and we wouldn't have the War on Tolkeen series of books as that would actually progress the setting beyond the initial start). In fact a lot of the books for Rifts would be very different if they even existed at all since a lot of the information in them builds on plotlines and hooks that were hinted at in previous books.

Doesn't Nightbane deserve the flavor and texture that advancing the timeline past the initial setting can give it... showing how the war for Earth is progressing (are the Nightbane making a difference... are the Nightlords gaining strength?). Just because the setting advances in one direction doesn't mean that it makes someone's game that didn't go in that direction invalid. The Wanderer has even stated that on his journeys he visited many potential futures for the Earth. I once ran a Rifts game where players ventured into Mexico to discover what happened to Erin Tarn... and discovered she had become a vampire (it was before WB3 came out, so there was no way of knowing she had a different fate at the time). Does this make that particular game invalid? No... it just means that events took a different turn than they did in the "official" timeline.

Progressing the initial setting beyond the start will happen... whether it is done by the publishers or by the gamers. No setting can remain static forever as doing so will eventually make it so that people no longer care to play. Nightbane came out in '95 and presented a dark future of our world. Today, we are a decade beyond where that setting started... that dark future is past... so why not bring the timeline further along and show what has happened since then... show us the path that future was going to take (baring player interference). I for one would love to see what NBEarth looks like in 2014... or even 2020 (to give us back the feel of it being a future setting).

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 Post subject: Re: Moving beyond 2006
Unread postPosted: Fri Aug 08, 2014 12:46 pm
  

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Monk

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Comment: The Munchkin Fairy
Prehaps I wasn't clear. I never said these things would not progress over time, I'm saying there is no need to give any cannonical conclusion to them, and in fact allowing each GM to make up their own conclusion seems far preferable. What happened to the whole zero-calorie plot that makes people starve to death? good question. The answer is "whatever is convient, if it even needs to be addressed at all in your particular game". Yes, there are plots ongoing, but none of them are exactly major loose ends for the setting, and the setting can go on quite happily never resolving them. This is not to say resolutions will not happen, I'm saying there's no need for One True Outcome.

Quote:
Even so... it seems unlikely that all the pieces that will be used to determine the outcome of this war are already in play. There are likely some unknown factors what have yet to make an appearance or are trying to stay out of the coming storm (and need to be brought in by the players). How realistic is it to keep adding more and more new factions and threats to the mix in the span of a single year (or rather a single day as the setting itself doesn't actually progress beyond what was initially presented).


Extremely realistic.

Okay, lets say that only cities that have a population of 100,000 or more warrent a major presence. not necessarly a nightlord or avatar for each one, just a night prince and a sizeable detachment of minions, each having their own plots going on.

there are about 255 Cities with a population over 100,000 in america alone. Lets say that they release 2 books a year, each one covering 4 different cities that are geographically close. it would take thirty two years of continuous publication and production before they ran out of plots for a single game day. I think my point is this, why do brand new plots in brand new areas do not provide insight into what is happening? they will not also provide good ideas? What makes progressing old ideas superior to creating new ones? I would rather have new ideas than rehashing old ideas.

Quote:
Doesn't Nightbane deserve the flavor and texture that advancing the timeline past the initial setting can give it... showing how the war for Earth is progressing (are the Nightbane making a difference... are the Nightlords gaining strength?).


I'll answer the question with a question--Doesn't Nightbane deserve the flavor and texture a more richly laid out, broader, and more varied starting point provides, rather than just taking 3 or so current plots and somehow making them the focus of future production? Wouldn't it get tiresome pretending that Magog, Maloch and Lillith are the only nightlords who matter? why do you need to advance the timeline to add more? Are there not other nightlords operating in 2006? Why are their plots meaningless and irrelevent that they don't even deserve mention.

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Sometimes, you're like a beacon of light in the darkness, giving me some hope for humankind. ~ Killer Cyborg

You can have something done good, fast and cheap. If you want it done good and fast, it's not going to be cheap. If you want it done fast and cheap it won't be good. If you want something done good and cheap it won't be done fast. ~ Dark Brandon


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 Post subject: Re: Moving beyond 2006
Unread postPosted: Sun Aug 10, 2014 7:51 am
  

Champion

Joined: Sun Oct 01, 2000 1:01 am
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Well the main reason (apart from the lack of books) that the timeline hasn't advanced is that there wasn't an ongoing metaplot that gradually grew over the course of the Nightbane sourcebooks, and the setting wasn't described as building up towards a big climactic event that will decide the outcome of everything.

And meanwhile it wouldn't be at all hard to move the setting's date forward without having to change anything in the books, and just say that it's taken fourteen years for the post Dark Day world to get to the state the books describe instead of six. The only problem I see there is that the scary police state in the books ended up being significantly less good at creating an Orwellian surveillance state than the real life US government.

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 Post subject: Re: Moving beyond 2006
Unread postPosted: Sun Aug 10, 2014 11:27 am
  

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Hey guys I agree. I am working on a north west book covering Seattle and Portland with a new Nightlord threat. There is so much potential. I like the time line because it shows progression but is anyone true to it?

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