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Text-Based Games / [Pitch] Root of the Chimera
« Last post by Kinjiru on May 24, 2017, 09:02:07 AM »
Name: Root of the Chimera
Core Theme: Evolution and transcendence
Sub Themes: Modern alternative reality, pre-apocalyptic horror, science fiction

Setting: In 1947, the scientific world was shaken with the discovery of what was later classified as Metachimeraphyta, plants with adaptability never seen before. Able to pollinate radically different plant species, the resulting transformation often resulted in a new species of plant altogether. The chimera plant, as it became known in popular culture, was viewed as concerning, but not a direct threat at large. Its potential was greatly underestimated. By the 1980's, plant genera all over the world contained variations; by the dawn of the 21st century, animal species worldwide displayed mutative qualities from the chimera plant. Even more worrisome, in recent years humans and other animals have displayed both physical and mental symptoms as a result of exposure to the plants. Containment seems all but impossible due to the scale of the problem and air, water and food sources are all affected.

Location: Despite this growing and alarming concern, life goes on as normally as possible. Rural Crown Ridge Township is a former mining region in Pennsylvania, a slowly dying town trying to claw its way out of obsolescence. The recent discovery of a massive node of chimeric plant life sprouting from a network of stripped coal mines has brought in a sudden influx of reporters, scientists, and others who simply seem drawn to the location. It remains to be seen what's next for humanity.

Feature List: The prime feature is a mutation system which allows players to adapt their characters with new abilities and qualities. These adaptations will be separated into lesser, greater and restricted forms. Lesser mutations are for flavor and confer no coded benefit. They can be taken at will as a player desires. As players play the game, they will be able to very slowly earn mutation points. With enough of these points, the character can be altered with a greater mutation. Restricted adaptations are caused by the game itself on rare occasions, inflicting the character with traits to incorporate into their role-play.

Additionally, important features of the game will be systems to modify the environment (construct buildings, for example), political systems to allow groups to try to set policy and law in Crown Ridge and of course a combat system to be used for both PvP and PvE conflicts. Though grinding on mutant monsters in a forest isn't expected to be a feature, encountering NPC animals/persons horrifically altered by the chimera plant is expected to be an occasional occurrence and real threat.

Playstyle: Exploration-oriented characters will have the opportunity to scout out the most recent threats in, around and under Crown Ridge. The ability to explore reports in other parts of the world may also be a common theme, especially if storytelling systems are implemented. Storytelling systems are likely, allowing faster gain of mutation points. The players will portray characters in conflict regarding how to deal with the chimera plant in general and the massive chimera plant core that the township has become known for. Environmentalists, scientists, military personnel and corporate sleaze may all have their unique views on this problem - or opportunity. Physical conflict is almost a sure bet, all the while journalists may seek to tell the world the deep secrets that others may want to keep.

Characters will all be mundane humans, initially, but as time goes on, it's expected more and more will have expressed the affects of the chimera plant. Inhuman, supernatural qualities will exist, unlimited by realism or a need to base those concepts on scientific restrictions. While a classic vampire will not exist, a person with supernatural abilities who possesses a desire for blood/meat, shuns sunlight and so on is an entirely possible concept. So is something that would feel more like a comic book character in ability, but not in flavor. I'm not going to employ words like "gritty" and "dark" because I'm not trying to force the potential player base into a corner. I'd rather set the table and let them decide just how dark or gritty it gets. Still, it's a must that the setting always reflects one reality: At the end of the day the chimera plant holds humanity on a knife's edge.

It's intended to be a world where most people have minor mental augmentations and benign physical adaptations at best. However, the players are unique and with a significant time investment, they'll be able to either create new characters with greater mutations or potentially mutate an existing character, depending on the circumstances.

Additional note: I realize the term 'chimera' has actual meanings in science. I'm appropriating it for my own purposes. I'm not a scientist myself, and I don't feel a need to dwell on realism as a foundation. If I had a team of scientists to consult, I might build the lore "The Martian" style and make it a community effort, but I'll settle for some semblance of science turned fantastic. All that said, feedback on realism is still perfectly fine.
Game Design / Re: [Mechanic] Mass-Combat in MUDs
« Last post by Reiloth on May 23, 2017, 07:18:19 PM »
I haven't seen Harshland's combat system yet, but i'm curious how it works. Seems to allow for greater awareness of who's fighting who and where.

I agree that combat becomes really not fun when it's autopilot and too complicated.
Text-Based Games / Re: [Pitch] City of Marvels
« Last post by Cartheon on May 22, 2017, 03:40:19 PM »
As the forums are a bit quiet, I decided to put some of my ramblings on this pitch here to see if I can provoke discussion.

I might swipe some of the systems from the Birthright Campaign Setting for 2nd Edition Advanced D&D.  They used to have a wiki up with all of the rules, but it has since disappeared sadly.  For those who never came across it, Birthright had a unique D&D setting focused on rulership of realms and nobility that contain sparks of godhood from the great war between gods.  Controlling land and having the populace respect them empowers that divine spark giving them small divine magical powers.  They also had detailed mechanics for managing lands and holdings, moving armies and ships, the development of buildings and fortifications, etc.

The nobility would function a bit like the Holy Roman Empire mixed with the post-Meiji Reformation Kazoku.  In these systems one's title did not correspond to the number of vassal lords under them but rather to the prominence of their lands.  A count was simply one with a smaller land than a duke.  The nobles in this system would work similarly.  A baron would have a minimum of the smallest unit of land (we'll use a hex to keep it simple) and one vote in the senate.  A count would have a minimum of three hexes and two votes.  A duke would have five hexes and three votes.  A prince would have eight hexes and five votes.  None of the nobles would be vassals of the other nobles, but alliances would be encouraged.  A baron allying with a prince for defense is a wise precaution, for instance.
Announcements / Optional Realities: Server Downtime
« Last post by Jeshin on May 22, 2017, 10:54:54 AM »

We had 48 downtime last week and appear to have lost 24 hours of information from our servers. This was our host having technical difficulties and not on our end. This information loss caused us to lose the article from 05/14 and 05/21 , but we will post both articles (re-written) on 05/28. In addition, you should see me being more active during the end of this month as some real life commitments ease up.
Announcements / Re: [Contest] May 2017: Redshirt Character Contest
« Last post by Jeshin on May 21, 2017, 08:25:35 PM »

The submission period for this contest will be ending on the 31st, if you still intend to participate don't forget!
Text-Based Games / Re: [PITCH] Sonder MU*
« Last post by Cartheon on May 20, 2017, 03:42:15 PM »
Sounds interesting.  Some I the elements are similar to what I was gunning for with my pitch.
Text-Based Games / Re: [PITCH] Sonder MU*
« Last post by Reiloth on May 18, 2017, 05:56:52 PM »
Twin Peaksy.

I like.

More thoughts later.
Text-Based Games / [PITCH] Sonder MU*
« Last post by Leech on May 18, 2017, 12:33:05 PM »


n. the realization that each random passerby is living a life as vivid and complex as your own. Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows

 Sonder is a roleplaying intensive MUD that explores the intriguing lives and dark secrets of the denizens residing in Briarport, Washington. Sonder promotes an atmosphere of cloying, interpersonal horror and occult paranoia hidden under a veil of social normalcy: the families of Briarport have no shortage of skeletons in the closet. A recent triple-suicide of clergy at the Saint Thomas Aquinas Cathedral has shaken the normally sleepy port town to its core. The attention of regional law enforcement and media turn to the town as the initial verdict of suicide tips ever-closer to a declaration of murder.

Sonder is inspired by shows like Bates Motel and novels like 'Salem's Lot and Hemlock Grove.

- - -


*A small town setting, pop. around 3000.

*An in-depth application and roster system, focused on continuity, goal-based character development, and forming connections between characters already on the grid. Everyone should come to the table with a hook, and everyone should be able to easily be hooked.

*An influence system that allows you to spend money or time to entrench yourself as a paragon of the town, and then use that influence to strike out at your peers, costing them money, influence, or affecting their reputation in some way.

*An attractiveness code. I'm leery on this one, but I feel like Haven quite nearly got it right, and it was a nice little mini game for characters interested in that.

*A storytelling system, for characters to craft their own events. Rigorously checked for continuity.

*An automated police system, disallowing people to murder each other in broad daylight in the middle of the street.

*An investigation skill that allows perceptive players to obtain a variety of clues about a crime that happened in a room, if the criminal isn't experienced, and doesn't take the appropriate precautions (covering fingerprints, hair, boot prints, etc.)

*Automated, quick, and painful combat. If somebody outweighs you and you lack training, you're probably going to be throttled to death. But maybe you can scream for help... (LabMUD's system immediately springs to mind, but with less opportunity for upward movement without considerable time, effort, and even money put in.) I've always wanted a combat system that was true to a real life scenario, and that mimic the claustrophobic, quick chaos that unarmed fights devolve to. I want the power to really be in the hands of those who are trained, but I also want a system of checks and balances such as the law and investigation system to make mass murders fairly preventable. When murder happens in Briarport, it's going to be a fairly big deal, and have a lot of hands involved. This does not reflect my feelings on armed combat or supernatural combat, two things which while rare, happen in situations where your average Briarport citizen probably won't be involved.

*A supernatural element, introduced via the metaplot, over time.

World Building / Re: Limitations (or not!) on player construction
« Last post by Cartheon on May 17, 2017, 08:54:38 PM »
I agree that is depends on the setting and theme of the server.  If you're making Minecraft MU*, being able to make stuff is critical.  If you're Murder Mystery MU*, it would serve little purpose.
Game Design / Re: [Mechanic] RPP/XP Gains
« Last post by Leech on May 13, 2017, 03:42:12 AM »
...there's little inherent risk in the learn by use systems that most MUDs implement. Usually, you're finding a like minded twink to spar for four hours with, or grinding through trash mobiles.

As for the effort, I'd rather spend effort crafting a particularly touching or exciting scene, rather then expend whatever effort or time it would take to run back and forth in a couple of rooms typing hide and sneak.
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