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  1. - Top - End - #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by dsmiles View Post
    Prohibition?
    So... government agents?
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    Quote Originally Posted by dsmiles View Post
    Prohibition?
    Yeah, but we need an object. Prohibition could represent an evil order or dudes trying to ban all the worlds Moonshine.

    Also, Vegans could be a class of dudes devoted to plant farming and frowning on regular farm procedure. Think this settings necromancers. Generally frowned upon by society as a whole.
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  3. - Top - End - #33
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    Hmm.

    Okay. Who controls the government agents? Whenever government agents come up, I'm tempted to say either "The Matrix!" or "Roswell Aliens!" but neither fits here. Is it just the government, in an attempt to destroy the freedom of the brotherhood of the road?

  4. - Top - End - #34
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    Obviously it is a case of Chaos versus Law, with Good and Evil taking a backseat and only occassionally popping up in small frontier towns experiencing shootouts or bigger cities with mysteries - if those bigger cities would be reachable at all.

    The Agents aren't from outer space or the Matrix. They are the physical embodiment of The Government which otherwise exists primarily as an ideal. An ideal that watches like Big Brother.
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  5. - Top - End - #35
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    That's what I thought. Neither of the other two make any sense in the setting.

    Though now I'm seeing the government as a kind of lovecraftian elder god.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Eldan View Post
    Though now I'm seeing the government as a kind of lovecraftian elder god.
    That sounds perfect. I happen to work for the government. OH THE HORROR!!!The horror! (I have to make SAN checks every time I come into my office.)
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  7. - Top - End - #37
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    This would also give a wholly different meaning to a Constitution score.
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    If we should make our own system, that really has to be a replacement for alingment. Criminals have a low constitution score, hobos are somewhere in the lower half, the average citizen at least respecting the spirit of it is somewhere in the middle, a marshal is way up there.

  9. - Top - End - #39
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    Not necessarily a bad thing, but eras are really starting to get mixed during this brainstorming. American folklore of the kind that was originally being discussed is set out in the unsettled west back when much of the country was still territories or native land. The civilizing influence of government in the settled regions of a country is really kind of an 1870s-90s sort of Wild West theme, while hobos and vagabonds is really 1930s in character and prohibition is synonymous with the roaring 20s.

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    Well, yes. But I don't see a problem with that.

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    Quote Originally Posted by gkathellar View Post
    Not necessarily a bad thing, but eras are really starting to get mixed during this brainstorming. American folklore of the kind that was originally being discussed is set out in the unsettled west back when much of the country was still territories or native land. The civilizing influence of government in the settled regions of a country is really kind of an 1870s-90s sort of Wild West theme, while hobos and vagabonds is really 1930s in character and prohibition is synonymous with the roaring 20s.
    I'm already mixing eras in my steampunk DnD campaign setting. We can make this work.
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    As for who runs the Govīment, doesnīt really matter. Its the Govīment man, and heīs here to ruin your fun. Heīs got laws about what you can grow, what you canīt grow, what you pay to harvest, and a nasty group of thugs to break apart your moonshine ring.

    Opposite object to moonshine? Bebo. High class, expensive, near-beer of the prohibition age. That or Tonic Water. Which may or may not have Real Gin, imported fromīThe Kingdom accross the Sea,īin it. Yes it's illegal as moonshine, but my friend, a man who drinks gin is no Farmpunk friend.
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  13. - Top - End - #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by ChumpLump View Post
    As for who runs the Govīment, doesnīt really matter. Its the Govīment man, and heīs here to ruin your fun. Heīs got laws about what you can grow, what you canīt grow, what you pay to harvest, and a nasty group of thugs to break apart your moonshine ring.

    Opposite object to moonshine? Bebo. High class, expensive, near-beer of the prohibition age. That or Tonic Water. Which may or may not have Real Gin, imported fromīThe Kingdom accross the Sea,īin it. Yes it's illegal as moonshine, but my friend, a man who drinks gin is no Farmpunk friend.
    /win Now with obligatory extra characters!
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  14. - Top - End - #44
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    Then you need a very good excuse for why drastically different economic eras can exist side-by-side. The roaring 20s and prohibition grew out of a clear sense of economic growth and progress, the chaos of the west grew out of expansionism following a newly established sense of post-civil war national identity, and the era of hobos and vagabonds grew out of a massive economic downturn and corruption. All presuppose the existence of a settled country.

    While you can plausibly fit all of those together in one setting, the tall tales of classic Americana are very different from them thematically and realistically. From Davy Crocket to Paul Bunyan, it's all about man's relationship with nature, often as a conqueror. These are swashbuckling stories of a particular character, and I don't know if you can make them work atmospherically in a world that's already settled and has no wild outback to validate it's heroes.

  15. - Top - End - #45
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    Can someone write up a short guide to appropriate slang and accent? I have no idea how it works, but such dictionaries are always one of my favourite parts of any setting.

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    John Henry = Man vs Industry
    It's as applicable in 1860 as it is in 2010. The roaring 20s can certainly exist on the same continent as the late 1800s. One represents the more civilized eastern states, while the wild west era could represent ongoing expansion to the west. There would be significant transition in-between, where you could find elements of both, but America's pretty big. As long as cars aren't included, technology and culture can take a long time to go from coast to coast. It's not like it has to be historically accurate. It's fiction.

    @Eldan: How much slang do you need? For accents, watch Tombstone. Listen to the speech patterns and accents used in that movie for the "classic" western accent. As far as mid-west type farmers, I don't have a clue as to what to watch or listen to.
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    Classic American tall tales and the Wild West are two different things, though. My point isn't the Wild West is impossible to fuse with the 1920s and 30s. I already have ideas for that. My point is that you're going to need a really good excuse to get the atmosphere of tall tales with their bloodstoppers and giants and whispering trees and brawling, singing river-boat men and Injun hexes in there.

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    Phh. My idea of American history consists of Columbus, the Revolution, the Civil war and then nothing to the first world war, with some cowboys in between. I can handle it

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    Quote Originally Posted by Eldan View Post
    Phh. My idea of American history consists of Columbus, the Revolution, the Civil war and then nothing to the first world war, with some cowboys in between. I can handle it
    That pretty much covers it, except for (between the Civil War and WWI, but after the cowboys) the horrible era known as the Prohibition Era, plus a bunch of civil rights movements (mostly revolving around women's equality), and the Great Depression. There's some other stuff, but I think I hit the main points.
    After WWI it gets a little harder to follow. Between WWI and WWII it's a little fuzzy for me, but after WWII, you've got the Baby Boomers, followed by the Hippies and the Vietnam Conflict. Which was followed by the Yuppies, and Generation X and the First Gulf War, followed by the present. There's some scattered civil rights movements for Black Americans, with a big push for equality in the '60s.
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    See? Our history went: "WWI -> WWII -> Vietnam -> nothing" as far as America was concerned. But then, we didn't really have time to go into the details anyway.

    In any case, it's all a bit fuzzy for me. But let's get back on topic. I think we need a few more class ideas beyond Hobo and Farmer. Lumberjack?
    Last edited by Eldan; 2010-11-24 at 08:11 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Eldan View Post
    See? Our history went: "WWI -> WWII -> Vietnam -> nothing" as far as America was concerned. But then, we didn't really have time to go into the details anyway.

    In any case, it's all a bit fuzzy for me. But let's get back on topic. I think we need a few more class ideas beyond Hobo and Farmer. Lumberjack?
    Lumberjack is good. How about Trapper, Soldier (including Native American Warriors), Priest (including Native American Medicine Men/Women), Railroad Laborer, aaaaaaaaaaaand I'm spent...
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    Solution for the ecconomic Discrepancyis easy.

    We be in the fahmlands, boy, yeh city slikkehs, they ah come out from back east, with theih fancy money, and theih fancy shoes, and theih 'Gin,' and they act like they own the place. A'yep, but, uh, they don' own the place, boy, We do. 'S owur lan', an's owur crops, an's owur Moonshine. Them rich folks wanna a quarrel wit' us? Letum.


    Quote Originally Posted by dsmiles View Post
    Lumberjack is good. How about Trapper, Soldier (including Native American Warriors), Priest (including Native American Medicine Men/Women), Railroad Laborer, aaaaaaaaaaaand I'm spent...
    Priest and Medicine Man should be seperate in my mind.
    Granny would be a 'Medicine Man' while some villiage priest may not exactly condone moonshine. I don't know they feel different enough.

    Lets not forget the Farmers, and Thugs (Rum Runners and Gov'ment Man Rum Busters).
    Farmers are the craftsmen, they fix the tractors, grow the crops, and know exactly how to make the moonshine work wonders.
    Thugs being your basic muscles and sneaks, they don't fight good, but ya sure as heck don't wanna meet one in a dark cornfield late at night
    Last edited by AugustNights; 2010-11-24 at 08:28 AM.
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    It depends on just how logical and internally consistent people want this setting to be, which I know isn't a priority for everyone. But to really flesh it out, reconciling the very different themes of pre- and post-Civil War American mythology is going to be important.

    My thought is that you could give this kingdom or civilization or confederacy or whatever two different and very distinct frontiers - one unsettled and full of wild magic, and one settled but uncivilized. That way, you can have cowboys in the North and Paul Bunyan in the South with only a hint of implausibility. Between the two would be settled rural areas where the excesses of the cities and an overabundance of factories has created a 1930's style economic depression, while the cities would still be in the middle of their own 1920s-type social upheaval. That gives the setting themes of Rural vs. Urban, Technology vs. Magic, Civilization vs. Wilderness, Government vs. Anarchy, and Cowboys vs. Gangsters vs. Hobos vs. Davy Crocket.

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    Quote Originally Posted by gkathellar View Post
    Cowboys vs. Gangsters vs. Hobos vs. Davy Crocket.
    This is pure awesome, right here! Pure. Friggin'. Awesome.
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    See? Now I want to see Davy Crocket fighting Al Capone.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Eldan View Post
    See? Now I want to see Davy Crocket fighting Al Capone.
    That fight? No survivors. Whole world. None.
    All dead. Too much awesome.
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    Also: Jazz. Early jazz vs. line dancing.

    It's also pertinent to ask how much real social movements of the times should influence the setting. If hobos are around, we need to ask whether there's a labor movement. If prohibition is around, we need to ask whether religion and women's suffrage motivated it (as in reality). And if 1920s culture is around, we need to know if ethnic discrimination has played a key role in its formation.

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    Quote Originally Posted by gkathellar View Post
    Also: Jazz. Early jazz vs. line dancing.

    It's also pertinent to ask how much real social movements of the times should influence the setting. If hobos are around, we need to ask whether there's a labor movement. If prohibition is around, we need to ask whether religion and women's suffrage motivated it (as in reality). And if 1920s culture is around, we need to know if ethnic discrimination has played a key role in its formation.
    Line dancing is far to recent. I think Square Dancing would be more appropriate.

    I'm not sure about women's suffrage, though. Most people asume equality as the default. But prohibition could easily be fueled by religion alone.
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    I think prohibition, in this setting, would be more enforced by the Government Man, under the pretenses of Religion, but as with the Government Man, no one truely knows his motives. (Or who "he" really is). Best guess is to wipe out the Farmman and take over their frontier. How better to do that then take away the moonshine? A'course, that's just a guess, I reckon we'll never really understand the Government Man. Womans suffrage? How about Peoples suffrage? Dosn't matter if you write Erik John Joman, or Elisha Smith on your ballot, your still voting for the same Government Man.

    Edit
    As for Labor Strikes, there will always be people who are motivated to travel the long lines of the steel rails on the Iron Horse, regardless of economical climate. Always be the traveler, making sure the Slikker stays in the city, and Farm boy in the country. Its a tough life, living on what you can carry and steal, but it keeps the balance.

    I also think it'd be better to romantasize the hobo rather than explain its existance, this is Folklore, not economics.
    Last edited by AugustNights; 2010-11-24 at 09:10 AM.
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    Let's organize the setting a little. I suggest having rings, organized by more to less civilized (in a fashion). From inside to the outside:

    The Golden City (mainly 1920s): a kind of almost-Utopia of jazz clubs and rich people, but carefully gov'ment regulated.
    The Outer Cities (mainly 1930s): what the Golden City is built on. Industry, crime, poverty, depression.
    The Outskirts (late 19th century): here, there's railroads, technology is spreading, the old ways clash with the government influence.
    X (no name yet, earlier wild west): farmers, cowboys, wide, open landscapes.
    The Wild (pre-19th century): dense forests, mythological creatures, mysterious happenings and brave pioneers.

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