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Re: Growing the Seed of a new game
Traveler of Karn
Joined: 2006/9/29
From Howling Bluff, Senton
Posts: 363
Creation Points : 1244
Hit Points : 2 / 32
MEP or PEP : 121 / 3747
Earned Skill Points : 77
Setting Information – "Dark" World

The World of Shadow and Fire

The "Dark" world is nearly the opposite of the "Light" world in most ways, but one thing remains the same (although the source of it differs), the inability to see very far. The world is not only visibly dark, but actually is dark in most senses of the world, being what many think of when they hear the word horror. There is a constant uncomfortable dry heat and the smell of death and fire (as in blood, decay, sulfur, and ash) that slowly wafts past you on the soft winds that never stop moving, but also never blow hard enough to remove the smells.

As the name implies, this world is very dark, but it is unnaturally so, like existing in a sort of intangible ink tank. There is an ethereal source of light somewhere, but it only seems to illuminate things very near the characters and is only as bright as things seem on a moonless night in the wilderness. This also makes most things seem dim and colorless, even observed up close without another source of light. Having a flashlight, lantern, torch, or other source of light can allow better details to be seen, but also acts as a beacon as to your presence.

Unless there are other direct light sources, things start to disappear into the darkness after about fifteen feet, becoming completely lost and obscured when over fifty feet away, but very hard to see well before that range. They will still cause shadows to move across distant light sources, but you won't actually be able to see them as anything other than a silhouette against that light until they are in range. When using a light source you will be able to see details and longer distances, but even these seem to have unnaturally stilted ranges. The light seems to be absorbed by the darkness after a certain distance, although they can still be seen by others for a very long ways off. None of this makes sense or works the way you expect, based on the "Real" world.

There are also "natural" sources of light that appear to be made of distant fire peeking through cracks in the ground or walls. It's as if there is constant burning happening just beyond the edges of reality that is able to peek through. These cracks of orange firelight can not be entered without death, as within them things start to become impossibly hot. The light emanating from them is not exactly bright – unless you look directly into them – but it seems to make for disturbingly long shadows that flicker and move constantly.

Beyond what is seen and the almost overwhelming stench of death and flame are the non-stop sounds that constantly surround you. Distant noises of metal on metal pounding rhythmically. Other more semi-random metallic noises that seem to keep no pattern or distance. The distant whispering of the winds, sounding like voices calling to you for help or taunting you. Odd organic sounds of creatures chittering or growling just out of sight. Slowly pulsating sounds, almost like heartbeats, that come from the living flesh that makes up part of the world. Screams that occasionally seem to ring out from somewhere. All this comes together into a cacophony of never-ending noise that allows for no rest and even makes focusing on any of them nearly impossible.

Unlike the "Light" world, this world is constantly active and moving and making noise, leading to higher levels o threat and direct fear. This is a place of constant activity and life, where you never really feel alone, even if you feel the lack of a supporting presence.

In addition to these elements of how the world looks and feels, the insecurities (flaws and fears) of the character will also drive some of what they see and feel in it. This is further explained elsewhere, but can cause different people to see the world through different eyes, even at the same time.

Building Blocks of Metal and Rust

The general design and layout of this world is identical to the way the "Light" world of the players is laid out, only the construction materials will be different. The buildings of wood and glass are replaced with mostly metal constructs, but some areas of built out of the living flesh of the world. The only things that even partially remain the same are those of natural elements, like stone and dirt. All plants are dead and usually covered in thorns or bristles. All in all the place looks completely different but the general shape and layout will be recognizable.

Almost all walls and fences, including windows, are replaced with solid sheets of metal that are riveted and welded in place to create the form. Some of them are replaced with metal bars, cages, and chain link fences, even in places that were once solid walls. All of these metal areas look as if they are ancient and covered with layers of rust and wear, making them seem poorly cared for and abused. The stone areas are also just as poorly cared for and changed, looking charred, scratched, and otherwise in disrepair as well.

Then there are the areas where the world has been broken through, exposing the living flesh that seem to be just below the surface of everything. Walls of wet exposed tissue that pulsates and ripples with unearthly movement. If touched it will react, usually tensing up or pulling away (if it can), and it feels warm and slick. It harmed it will react violently, although usually unable to attack, and distant screams of anger may be heard from within the walls. Damage will also cause bleeding, blistering, and other natural reactions to the type of wounds one could cause on flesh. No matter how much damage is done, however, you can't dig completely through the flesh, as it seems to be infinitely present.

The wild areas of the world, where nature lived and thrives in the "Real" and "Light" worlds, you will find some of the new unnatural construction and flesh in place of certain elements, but most of them will simply be replaced with dead trees and plants of thorny brambles and decay. Small plants will be gone and only the dirt and rock will sit in its place, while larger plants are dead twisted versions of themselves.

Lastly there are the breaks in the world that reveal the fire and lava beyond. These are mostly found in the solid ground, where things are normally solid, but occasionally within the walls of certain areas. Some of these look as if the metal sheet that once laid there fell in or broke free, while others will actually look like something cause the very surface to crack open. These breaks in the surface don't reveal living flesh, but open flames or flowing lava deep within the ground or walls, even if it seems impossible to be there.

In addition to the construction of the world, there are the elements and items scattered discarded all around the place, but not the normal "Real" world type items. Here you are more likely to find scattered collections of metal scrap, stone chippings, pools of blood, bone fragments, half eaten flesh, and more. They are items of the world and horror, often covered in blood, dirt, rust, and what would look like scrapings from claws or steel.

Player Characters and the "Dark" World

It is rare that this is the first of these two worlds that a character will see, so the transition into it usually comes after they have spent some time in the "Light" world. They will discover that this is the place of nightmares and not a place that they will ever be able to rest or relax. The intense mental weight of the place will drag them down and affect them deeply, even when they are directly confronted with their own fears. This is a place that should be uncomfortable and bring fear to the characters on some innate level.

The player characters will have very little direct control over this world and most of what they do here will be reacting what to they are faced with. This is the place where the flight or fight mechanism of the psyche is almost always in effect. None of the other people found in this place live here by any means. This is a place they get stuck in and struggle with as they face the same types of horrors and fears as the player characters. Meeting another "living" person here is rare and always traumatic for all of them.

Unlike the character, the choices of the player will have a great effect on this world. What they did to create their character will directly change the way they see and interact with this world. Their fears can shape how certain things are formed and display to them (for example: someone with a fear of fire may see many parts of the word on fire constantly). Even the random elements found around the world may be tainted with their flaws and fears (for example: someone with a flaw of a bum or missing leg may find broken crutches and prosthetics everywhere).

Creatures of the Shadows

The beings and creatures that inhabit this world are mostly creatures of nightmares. They are not being of the "Real" world with slight twists or larger sizes. They are horrible mutations, vile creatures of nightmare, and amalgamations of flesh and steel in impossible forms. Many of them are also the true manifestations of nightmares and fears, as selected by the players for their characters.

There are some standard creatures that are always common to this place (and sometimes escape to the "Light" world), which are mostly the weaker and more common critters. These simply get in the way of the characters and possibly whittle them down in preparation for their facing of the real nightmares. They will often scatter and disappear when one of the real monsters appear to face the characters. These will be more fully explained later in the section on creatures of the world.

Most of the creatures are twisted versions of vaguely living creature that are so mutated and demented that they are now nothing more than living horrors. Beings with flesh that looks inside out, moist and glistening, perhaps even oozing blood or other substances. Beings with parts where they don't belong, sometimes even too many of them or odd sizes, like eyes all over their arms and hands or a face that is nothing more than a gaping mouth. Beings with limbs they shouldn't have, either too few or too many of them or even completely wrong ones, like tentacles with pinchers on the end coming out of the chest area. Beings made of impossible substances like ash, blood, or anything else that strikes fear and horror into others.

There are also those creatures who seem to be a mix of twisted flesh and solid metal, making them appear not only frightening but in pain themselves. Sometimes it is simply spikes or metal shards poking through or out of them, bleeding from those spots. Sometimes they actually have these metal parts fused with their form that affects how they move, perhaps even being able to use them rough weapons. There are then those actually seem to be partially made of living metal, having their form look like some demon cyborg, only without the computer type elements. Chains, spikes, blades, shards, poles, lumps of metal, and more can all be parts of these horrors.

Lastly, there are the personal horrors of the characters, created from their psyches. These are creatures with nearly no limits as to what they can be, but no matter what they will be intense. They are usually large and take the fear or flaw of the character and blow it up to its most intense levels. They would be horrific to anybody, but should be truly terrifying to their targets.

Emotional Influences on the Feel

As opposed to the empty feel of the "Light" world, this is the world of anger, tension, fear and aggression. This is the place where the most vile fears and darkest parts of the human psyche are made manifest in huge and horrible ways. There is no rest or safety in this place, with the real threat of something coming out of the darkness to get you, so constant awareness and worry are predominant parts of your time here.

This is a world where you are always on edge and nothing can really be done to stop it until you are able to switch back to the "Light" world or die. While under this pressure your characters will be on edge and tense the whole time, since there is no safety here. Hiding from it is not possible and resting is out of the question.

The darkness, smells of death and fire, constant noise, and vile twisted creatures make this a horrible and difficult place for characters to remain calm and in control in. This is the place of living nightmares, so they are constantly at odds with their own fears, often driving them to do things more than their will. Both their body and mind are under assault here, with physical threats being huge and their mental suffering feeding off those threats and fear of them.
Dragavan: Land of Karn - Dragavan Games - Lootin' Wizards - Dragavan's Den
Posted on: 2008/5/15 14:17
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Subject Poster Date
     Re: Growing the Seed of a new game Dragavan 2008/4/29 18:41
       Re: Growing the Seed of a new game Dragavan 2008/4/30 19:03
         Re: Growing the Seed of a new game Dragavan 2008/5/4 22:36
           Re: Growing the Seed of a new game Dragavan 2008/5/5 1:04
             Re: Growing the Seed of a new game Dragavan 2008/5/8 16:29
               Re: Growing the Seed of a new game Dragavan 2008/5/8 18:20
                 Re: Growing the Seed of a new game Dragavan 2008/5/8 23:20
                   Re: Growing the Seed of a new game Dragavan 2008/5/9 18:43
                     Re: Growing the Seed of a new game Dragavan 2008/5/13 23:33
                       Re: Growing the Seed of a new game Dragavan 2008/5/15 12:29
                         Re: Growing the Seed of a new game Dragavan 2008/5/15 14:14
                           Re: Growing the Seed of a new game Dragavan 2008/5/15 14:17
                             Re: Growing the Seed of a new game Dragavan 2008/5/16 11:55
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