Burning Wheel – World Burning Question #3

Happy 4th of July everyone!

This question, which has been sent out to my group, is far less intricate than last week’s one.  It revolves around the feel and atmosphere of our game.  How old is our world?

It is a lush, young world?  We see this in Conan.  Yes, Atlantis has fallen, and the dark kingdom of Stygia is established, but the world still feels new.  It is a pre-history to our world.   The main thing this means for us is Kingdoms, not Empires.

We would see the rise of multiple city states in this game, or perhaps a couple of true kingdoms (multiple cities ruled by the same king) but not continent spanning empires.  This will give the game more of the ‘points of light’ feel, where stepping away from your city’s area of control means stepping off the map into wildness.

We could also have an established world.  An example of this would be Game of Thrones or medieval Europe.  We have the time and the inertia of events to see nations and empires enter the arena of play.  Civilization has established itself much more firmly in the minds of men, and the dark corners of the world are truly remote.  Multiple nations would clash in this world.

Or we could play in an old world.  In my opinion, this is the initial feel for Melnibone in the Elric series.  The weight of history has crushed this land.  The edges of the land are breaking off and forming new kingdoms, shearing themselves from the corpse of a bloated empire.  The world would be far less lush in this case, as much of the effect of civilization would have stripped the vitality from the earth.  The old powers would be reawakening, finding new places to thrive.

This can also be mix and match.  In an established world, after an apocalypse (say the fall of Rome) civilization hits the reset button to a new world feel.

I am looking forward to seeing what my players come up with.  This is shaping up to be an excellent game!

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