Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Grit & Vigor: Pulp Age Concepts

Grit & Vigor is the up-and-coming RPG from the fevered mind of John Stater (aka the "Blood and Treasure guy"). It is an adventure game that draws on the literature of Kipling, Conan-Doyle, George MacDonald Fraser, Robert E Howard, Verne, Burroughs and their ilk. It's about larger than life men going on adventures in search of money, power and freedom.
The game system will be compatible with Blood and Treasure, but will have its own flavor. The game focusses around the many tales of adventure from the last two centuries, from cowboys to super-spies and pioneers of SCIENCE! Character creation promises to be very interesting, with the process including the characters earlier life, education and assorted oddbits relating to his journey to becoming an adventurer.
In preparation of this coming game, I have decided to begin tinkering with a campaign setting for this game. The setting will be one that incorporates elements of my favorite stories from and set in the years leading up to The Great War (WWI). I plan on incorporating both historic fact, and fiction; including scientific romances, tall tales, and pulp tales into the mix.

The setting will be in 1910, a time of great upheaval in the world. Even more so when adding the strange events of the pulp world. Below is a brief timeline for starters. All the events in this timeline will be in living memory of most folks, with the effects of certain events featuring mightily.

PULP AGE TIMELINE (In Brief)
1880 - The First Boer War.
1881 - Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson move into 221B Baker Street. [A Study in Scarlet]
1883 - The first electric lighting system employing overhead wires begins service in Roselle, New Jersey; it was installed by Thomas Edison.
------ Zulu King Cetshwayo barely escapes a rebel attack with his life.
1885 - Dr. Jekyll creates a formula to isolate evil. [The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde]
1886 - Robur attempts to conquer the world with his Aeronef flying fortress, The Albatross. [Robur the Conqueror]
1891 - Sherlock Holmes apparently killed in confrontation with Prof. Moriarty at Reichenbach Falls. [The Final Problem]
------ Russian occultist Helena Petrovna Blavatsky dies.
------ Dr. Moreau begins performing terrible experiments Noble's Isle. [The Island of Doctor Moreau]
1894 - Rudyard Kipling publishes The Jungle Book.
------ England begins construction of a fleet of airships to combat future flying foes.
1896 - Wilhelm Röntgen's discovers X-rays and X-ray imaging (radiography).
1897 - England fends off an invasion by France and Russia with the help of Germany. [The Great War in England in 1897]
------ Lord Dracula comes to England aboard the Demeter and is hunted down by Dr. Van Helsing's band and apparently slain. [Dracula]
1898 - The Spanish-American War.
------ The Boxer Rebellion in China.
------ Martians invade the earth. [War of the Worlds]
1899 - Beginning of the Second Boer War in Africa.
------ Nikola Tesla begins his high-voltage, high-frequency experiments in Colorado Springs.
1900 - Max Planck formulates the quantum theory.
------ First flight of the Astronef. Earl Redgrave and his new wife Zaidie embark on a honeymoon adventure touring the solar system. [A Honeymoon In Space]
1901 - Queen Victoria dies, succeeded by her son Edward VII.
------ Bedford and Cavor build a ship out of cavorite and travel to the moon, encountering the insectoid selenites. [The First Men in the Moon]
------ Earl Redgrave encounters the humanoid Aurorean Martians. He finds that these Martians are not the same as those who invaded Earth 1998.
------ The first Land Ironclads are employed in the Second Boer War. [The Land Ironclads].
1902 - End of the Second Boer War in Africa.
------ The Gun Club of Baltimore builds the giant Columbiad Cannon in Florida to launch a projectile to the moon with explorers Michel Ardan, Impey Barbicane & Captain Nicholl. [From the Earth to the Moon]
1903 - The Wright brothers make the first sustained human flight in an Aeroplane.
1906 - Dr. Omega and his companions travel aboard his innovative spaceship Cosmos, travelling to Mars and encountering a number of different Martian races other than the Sarmak.
1908 - Summer Olympics are held in London.
------ Frederick Cook claims to have reached the North Pole. Returns with tales of an inner world that includes prehistoric mammals and temperate climate.
------ Tunguska event or "Russian explosion" in Siberia.
1909 - Einar Dessau uses a short-wave radio transmitter, becoming the first radio broadcaster.
------ Sultan of the Ottoman Empire Abdul Hamid II is overthrown and succeeded by, Mehmed V.
------ Serbia accepts Austrian control over Bosnia and Herzegovina.
------ The United Lodge of Theosophists, or ULT, is founded by Robert Crosbie.
1910 - Present year (game time).
------ ???

More to come...

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I saw Eternity the other night,
Like a great ring of pure and endless light
-- Henry Vaughan