I'm curious who would be interested in a game with a very long setting time. The basics are this:
The covenant will be set in the South of Italy in the Roman Tribunal. It will be constructed as it existed in 1100 AD, about 50 years after its founding, with 2000 build points.
Everyone will make a magus of any age- these magi will not be the ones you wind up playing, they will be the parens of the magi you end up playing.
Everyone will also make a "companion" character which is their magus at the start of an apprenticeship. You will trade parens characters- and decide when you want your final character to begin their apprenticeship (which year)
The covenant will be advanced via a variation on solo play rules from the forums (primary difference being that characters can interact and the covenant adventures are rolled collectively instead of individually).
Grogs and companions may be added as children at any time, or may be introduced after an adventure- 1 character per adventure. They may also be written up as they would have existed in 1100- most usefull for those who might write or teach future generations, including training crafts.
The real game (where adventures start being played out) will begin in 1220. Prior to 1220 a few limitations exist, namely that history will occur as written- whether the magi are involved or not. Second is that any breakthroughs will have minimal impact on the order before 1220. If you discover a hermetic breakthrough in 1150, the tractatus will get misplaced until 1220, or mislabeled- something will happen so it does not interfere with the order as a whole. Certainly it could still be used by the person who made the breakthrough and others in the covenant- maybe some outside depending on how signifigant it is.
Not all breakthroughs are possible, including some from Ancient Magic. I may introduce ancient mysteries not in the book if someone goes searching for them, but this is more background than the focus of the game.
The nature of the divine will be... different thn most people would expect, but on the surface it should stay the same...
Also if you abandon the game your character will be given to someone else- this game is based on keeping the same cast in play for the duration, even if the players are not the same.
Any questions? Interest?
I love this kind of sandboxy game and would be interested.
Sounds quite interesting, and things in the real world are finally starting to calm down.
I should also mention that the over-arching plot should go (following related real world events) until about 1250 to 1275... though player actions could shorten or prolong that...
That being answered, my biggest other question would be how the houses of the older magi are chosen if we're designing the future parens of other players' main character as that choice sets the houses for the main characters pretty firmly.
Basically each player will make their own parens as a regular magus character- including standard rules of advancement after gauntlet to 1100 AD. They also make their own character as they would be at the start of apprenticeship, and the player decides what year they begin apprenticeship. Then they swap parens characters for solo play, so another player will be in charge of their apprenticeship (and may decide to go for breakthroughs or helping the covenant as much as building up an apprentice). So the players are still picking their houses, by designing their parens.
Sounds interesting. What posting rate are you expecting?
I would expect around 3-5 times a week, though there are obvious reasons some weeks could be slower- for example in the first stages where we use solo play rules, anyone who has no adventures for the year we are in will have fewer reasons to post...
Ah, OK. That makes more sense. That way you get to choose your own house. There is a related question. While the other player chooses the projects and when you'll be taught, can you still choose what you are taught? Otherwise I could see choosing to make one sort of magus and ending up with something completely different. For example, wanting to make a Corpus/Mentem focused Verditius but ending up trained in the four elements and not at all in either Corpus or Mentem.
I tend to agree that we ought to have at least some chance of getting an apprentice trained somewhere like what we'd want.
We might be able to set forth a general policy of training.
Season 1: Personal training
Season 2: Assistance in lab/focused learning
Season 3: Assistance in lab/focused learning
Season 4: Free study season to study as they wish
Giving a free study season could allow the apprentices a chance to focus on what they want rather than what the master needs.
That is somewhat realistic, however, keep in mind that: 1) you are designing your parens, including what their specializations are. While they may train you contrary to this, it is unlikely. Also 2) this will go beyond your apprenticeship, and if you finish apprenticeship with a mastery of the 4 elements and decide to turn around and study mind magic and specialize in that there is nothing stopping you from doing so. Of course payers can also discuss things behind the scenes... Your apprenticeship can start as early as 1100 AD if you wish, or be much later, but advancement will not be based on a generic 30 points per year.
It sounds like we'll be focusing on character advancement for the first part of this game, using the solo-play rules from an earlier post. I am assuming these rules https://forum.atlas-games.com/t/solo-play/9494/1? I have enjoyed using these rules to advance a magus NPC in a table-top game, and like the idea of using them along with more traditional pbp stories.
Trying to get a handle on timing ...
... and later ...
If an apprentice ends his/her apprenticeship early, will we also be using the solo-play rules for them, until 1220?
I agree with Trogdor's seasons suggestion.
What else should we know before throwing out character concepts?
The seasonal advancement for apprentices is up to the masters- if the masters choose to follow that formula that is certainly fine. The solo play rules will be used, not only after apprenticeship but during, including the right of your master to send you off to deal with some adventure on his behalf should he chose to do so.
What I have at this point for the game beginning is as follows:
The covenant of ___ began as a chapterhouse in 1061 when Roger I decided that the ruined town of Locri was vulnerable to Saracen raiders as a landing spot, but with people having already abandoned the location on 2 occasions it would be hard to support as a defensive position. When it was pointed out that the location had a pagan temple which had been leveled but a century earlier by Saracen raiders, it was gifted to a covenant from Normandy along with a writ of crenulation and a rent that was expected, and the expectation that the magi would defend this land for themselves from Saracen invaders.
50 years later the chapterhouse has become a covenant, with a mixture of people of Greek, Roman, Norman and Saracen heritages. The following boons and hooks are mandatory:
Writ of crenulation (minor boon), indebted (minor flaw)
obviously naming the covenant should be one of the early tasks.
When we get to the point of "founding" in 1100 AD the covenant will have already grown from a chapterhouse to have 2000 bp. The players will also need to agree on additional boons and hooks as of 1100 AD ("solo" play may change these as things progress).
Vis sources are generally likely to be of a commercial rather than supernatural nature- for example a scriptorium that generates magical texts sold for vis as opposed to vis from flowers in a magical glade. Italy as a whole has been well settled and domesticated, so natural vis is rare. Not impossible, just rare.
The Roman Tribunal has books referred to as authorities- these books cannot be covered by cow and calf within the tribunal, though commentaries on them may be- I am planning to generate a list of these, but they tend to be high level and of middling quality, so most people will not start study with them, but because of standardization of these authorities commentaries on them are fairly widespread.
Obviously anything you want to know about the history of Italy in the 12 and 13th centuries could be relevant, but there is plenty out there on Wikipedia and other sources. There will be some other restrictions on boons and hooks related to the history of Locri. For example the temples were to Persephone and Aphrodite, so any attunement of the aura should follow from this. Remote is not a possibility since there are two towns within 6 miles, and so forth...
As a note- Locri was first abandoned in the fifth century AD, and there was open resistance to persecution of Paganism in the Byzantine empire including a pagan majority of the empire through 602 AD. The temples are recorded to have been destroyed by Saracens in 915. The earliest the temple could have been built was 580 BC- so pretty much any level of aura is possible...
I wasn't thinking so much along the lines of what Trogdor suggested. Rather, I was simply thinking we might choose what is taught in those guaranteed 14 (1 used for opening) seasons. Everything else up to the person playing the parens, including when those guaranteed seasons are.
Again, you the player can suggest, but it is really up to the person playing the parens. Which is both realistic and, I feel, a fair tradeoff for the extra amount of power this can translate into.
There will be a certain quid pro quo, that should keep us all on track. I may be training someone else's apprentice character, but someone else is training mine. What goes around comes around. We'll all have incentive to keep the apprentices on track.
Sounds good. I think I've got a good concept in mind that could fit a lot of variations, just so long as the point of the covenant is not generally headed toward the infernal.
The point is not headed toward the infernal, however it is heavy on intrigue in the Roman tribunal, and where there is the head of the Church, there will be infernal forces trying to corrupt it, and I will not forbid anyone from pursuing the infernal if they so wish- including taking things to private communication so everyone does not know. This would be a quick way to escalate a grog to mythic companion status after all... for the small cost of his soul...
No problem there. This concept just veers strongly against the infernal.
If we were to start the game with about 3 people, and hadn't attracted more by the time we finish covenant management I would probably want you to each manage an extra magus through the startup for new players to take over...