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Author Topic: READ THIS FIRST: Summary of setting and story concepts  (Read 7254 times)
zenbitz
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« on: June 24, 2009, 04:48:53 PM »

Here are the wiki pages that collect various thoughts on the PARPG story.  Some of these are simple bullet point links, and others are links to forum discussions.  Generally, the more "agreed upon" the idea, the more "wikified" it would be relative to "forumized".  Still, the items that were linked here clearly have a coherent theme.

* The following is stuff that is considered "Set in stone"; i.e., won't be changed without very good reason or strong alternate direction:
http://wiki.parpg.net/Draft:Setting

Basically:  The game is snowy, takes place in Scandanava about 2008-2009 20 years after a general nuclear exchange precipitated by a Soviet invasion of Western Europe (which involved liberal use of tactical nukes, including on cities)

* This next page is basically just an organization page to various ideas that were floated.  The could be used as main stories or possibly converted into side line stories.
 
http://wiki.parpg.net/Draft:Main_story_versions

* Other organization pages:
http://wiki.parpg.net/Draft:Story_tool_box

EDIT: I finally created the page above, at least put header items.  Now fill it up!

http://wiki.parpg.net/Draft:Story_quest_ideas




« Last Edit: June 30, 2009, 05:38:58 PM by zenbitz » Logged

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Vince
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« Reply #1 on: June 24, 2009, 06:49:11 PM »

Well, it aint much.

Since I don't have anything better to do at the moment and I have to sit in the office for at least another hour, here is my very rough idea for the setting and the story. Naturally, it's low key and anti-epic, so don't complain.

There was a nuclear war, followed by a nuclear winter. Where, what, and why aren't important because the survivors won't give a damn about who attacked whom, why, and when. They will be busy trying to survive. Suffice to say, it takes place somewhere north, so the climate was cold to begin with and now it's really fucking cold. Growing anything is out of the question, so hunting/ice fishing is the main source of food. The food issue defines the lifestyle - small village-like communities located in rural areas.

Large cities are in ruins. Stores were looted in the first years and now there isn't much to do there. There are raiders. Some people will always prefer (have no choice sometimes?) to take from other people, so some city dwellers had formed gangs, which first preyed on those who stayed in cities, and then slowly focused their attention on those who had the wisdom to get the fuck out of Dodge.

So, now we have the basic setup: hunter/fishermen communities vs raiders. Since it's the Scandinavia, the raiders can decorate themselves in the viking fashion. Unlike the stereotypical farmers, the northern hunters are hard folk, so raiding them aint easy. This will also explain your fighting skills. Logically, any small community will go through logical phases - uniting, setting up ruling bodies, establishing active militia (good hunters whose job is no longer to hunt but to protect), etc. So, this already sets up a good foundation of a post-apoc life: issues of several communities uniting, arguments of who will be in charge, local policies (do we continue to hunt? do we move? do we abandon two settlements and focus on building up the strongest? do we attempt to locate more settlements and do some trading? etc), how to deal with the raiders (passive/aggressive), etc) and, of course, the raiders who may approach you and try to convince you to join them and help them to attack your settlement. It would be interesting to set up internal conflicts that would actually piss you off and motivate you to side with the raiders. This will be phase 1.

Phase 2 could be similar to what I've already described in another post:

"Well, there could be many different reasons. Let's say the PC lives in a small Arroyo-like shithole, for argument's sake. It's not much, but it's home. Fallout 2 uses the tired "find X to save us" device, which is fine, because it will be a valid motivation for some people. Other people could be expelled for being douchebags (caught stealing, for example). Other people can simply be unhappy, like Fallout's Tandi, and want to get out and see what else is out there. This group would include people who want to see the world (explorers) and people who don't want to live in a shithole.

A good way to model it in-game would be to bring in traders into the shithole. Let's say they tell you something they've heard. Rumors of a state-of-the-art pre-war (or whatever you guys have) underground facility. It became a fairy tale of the iceland and only fools would waste their lives looking for it. Well, something the traders tell the shithole's elder clicks (let's say they mentioned a marker who saw as a child) and the elder now believes the location can be found and he knows where to start looking. The problem is, it's been a long time since he was  kid. Things changed. A perfect setup for a PA game. Go look for some place in the frozen wasteland. A good job for a responsible guy.

Someone less responsible, but more ambitious can recognize a great opportunity - find this facility, but don't turn it over to the shithole's elder. Rule over it like a feudal lord, deciding who is allowed in and setting up your own laws, or sell it to a powerful faction.

Or take the job because that's your chance to explore and see the world. Or get caught stealing from the traders and be expelled. Or sigh up as a guard or trader with the caravan.

As you can see, it's a simple setup that covers a lot of options."

So, phase 2 is to find where this facility is. It will involve a lot of places to see and people to talk to. You'll see different post-apoc communities and way of living. It would be nice to be able to return to your village every now and then (assuming you didn't burn it to the ground with the raiders) and tell them what you've learned and see them applying it and the village changing. For example, let's say you learn how to build and maintain hydroponic gardens. You share the knowledge with the villagers and next time you'll see the gardens there. You can also trade this knowledge in other places for some other "secrets", like making wind power generators and such. Whatever fits. So, basically, your starting community can grow with you in a very RPG-ish fashion. They start weak and by mid-game they can be a wasteland power to be reckoned with, with all the logical consequences. You can see peaceful, hardworking folk changing into ruthless, survival-of-the-fittest-fuck-the-weak, power-hungry faction. In fact, they can even become the main antagonist - all thanks to you. Great job saving the world, asshole.

phase 3 - you found it. Now what? The game shouldn't end when you find it. You shouldn't just descend into it leading the grateful group of survivors. The best part of the game should only begin. So, basically, phase 1 - hard life in the frozen wasteland with minor conflicts, phase 2 - exploring and the foundation of larger conflicts, phase 3 - the conflict.

One option would be - you found it and it's already taken by those how found it earlier. There isn't a lot of them, so a strong group toughened by the hardship of the outside life can take them out. Do you want to do it? Or do you want to convince them to let you and others in, which would involve submitting to their way of living and their culture? If you take it over, what do you do with it? Give home to the needy, hand it over to your village/faction, trade it, turn it into a base and build your own faction making it your seat of power? 

Naturally, I can flesh it out more if there is interest.
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zenbitz
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« Reply #2 on: June 24, 2009, 09:25:32 PM »

Quote
Well, it aint much.

Hey, I thought it was pretty good for not having a single writer continuous through the project.

Quote
Since I don't have anything better to do at the moment and I have to sit in the office for at least another hour, here is my very rough idea for the setting and the story. Naturally, it's low key and anti-epic, so don't complain.

It's like you are inside my head Vince.  I just skimmed this - and it looks great - , but low key, anti-epic, and grim are what I want to.

I am thinking we should move your post out of this section however, which is meant to be an organization thread.  Thanks for taking the time to write this... it has a lot of ideas that were floating around in the early days but never got collected/cohesive.

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maximinus
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« Reply #3 on: June 25, 2009, 05:42:43 PM »

+1. Good stuff Vince, and welcome to the team.
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mvBarracuda
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« Reply #4 on: June 25, 2009, 06:16:41 PM »

Hehe Vince has his own project to take care of:
http://www.irontowerstudio.com/

But it's great that he's around in here and provides such useful feedback :-) welcome on the forums.
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Vince
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« Reply #5 on: June 25, 2009, 06:25:56 PM »

Glad to help. I'll be more than happy to share our experience and provide whatever help I can (since you keep posting updates on our forums in such a persistent and enthusiastic manner).


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shevegen
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« Reply #6 on: June 26, 2009, 05:01:13 PM »

How is the story developing so far? I would like to shape up my NPC (sub-plot) a bit because obviously there were some holes in my description of his background so far, so I would like to know if the "start" of the background story is somewhat finished enough for others to model along it
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zenbitz
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« Reply #7 on: October 21, 2009, 06:48:45 AM »

I have updated and reorganized the Department Wiki page.  It's not much, but comments welcome.

http://wiki.parpg.net/Department:Writing
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mvBarracuda
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« Reply #8 on: October 21, 2009, 11:25:32 AM »

Looks good to me zenbitz :-) Definately a huge improvement over the old one.
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