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Author Topic: The Medieval-Authentic PC Party - What do they do?  (Read 10865 times)

CRKrueger

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The Medieval-Authentic PC Party - What do they do?
« on: December 14, 2017, 06:25:17 PM »
The historians on this site have a little bit of a bad habit of telling everybody how there's tons of adventure in Medieval-Authentic campaigns, but it's not going to be D&D standard - without telling us exactly what it is going to be.  Having played/run Harn I got my head around it eventually, but there might be people who don't really get the difference.

So tell us, what are PCs going to do?  Being hired mercenaries/troubleshooters for some Patron is easy, that's available in any time, any place.  Same with Vikings, we got that one.

Give us some examples from history of PCs.  Obviously Lion and Dragon/Dark Albion era will be a focus for Pundit, but what about Reconquista-Era Spain, or the Hundred Years War, Gronan?

Dazzle us with cool PC concepts straight out of history.  What's our party look like?  What do we do over the course of a campaign?  HOW is this different?
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Premier

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The Medieval-Authentic PC Party - What do they do?
« Reply #1 on: December 14, 2017, 06:59:31 PM »
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/El_Cid

Reading the bit before the contents should be inspiring enough in itself.
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Gronan of Simmerya

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The Medieval-Authentic PC Party - What do they do?
« Reply #2 on: December 14, 2017, 07:08:47 PM »
In the HYW both sides hired mercenaries like mad, as well as having the Gascons, the Spaniards, and so many others.  Further, knights DID travel from area to area looking for wars to fight in.

Not to mention intrigue, smuggling, arms running, and other forms of mayhem.

See "Sir John Hawkwood."
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CRKrueger

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The Medieval-Authentic PC Party - What do they do?
« Reply #3 on: December 14, 2017, 07:22:17 PM »
Quote from: Gronan of Simmerya;1013796
In the HYW both sides hired mercenaries like mad, as well as having the Gascons, the Spaniards, and so many others.  Further, knights DID travel from area to area looking for wars to fight in.

Not to mention intrigue, smuggling, arms running, and other forms of mayhem.

See "Sir John Hawkwood."

So PCs are going to be moving around the countryside from place to place as part of an army or mercenary group and getting up to no good as part and parcel of the military experience.

What about those who aren't actually part of the official fighting?  How does a group of PCs meander about the English countryside coming into towns, talking to the yokels and being hired to do something?  Doesn't really happen quite the same way.

Be specific.  Who do they work for?  Where do they stay?  How are they going to get from place to place?  What is their legal standing or right that lets them decide to travel from London to York?

You're pitching me a medieval game, tell me what it's going to be like, and pretend you care enough to write more than a drive-by. :D
Even the the "cutting edge" storygamers for all their talk of narrative, plot, and drama are fucking obsessed with the god damned rules they use. - Estar

Yes, Sean Connery's thumb does indeed do megadamage. - Spinachcat

Isuldur is a badass because he stopped Sauron with a broken sword, but Iluvatar is the badass because he stopped Sauron with a hobbit. -Malleus Arianorum

"Tangency Edition" D&D would have no classes or races, but 17 genders to choose from. -TristramEvans

CRKrueger

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The Medieval-Authentic PC Party - What do they do?
« Reply #4 on: December 14, 2017, 07:26:39 PM »
Quote from: Premier;1013795
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/El_Cid

Reading the bit before the contents should be inspiring enough in itself.

Which, like Gronan's example, brings up a point no one is making.

In the Medieval World, the "heroes", for the most part, are military leaders.
Even the the "cutting edge" storygamers for all their talk of narrative, plot, and drama are fucking obsessed with the god damned rules they use. - Estar

Yes, Sean Connery's thumb does indeed do megadamage. - Spinachcat

Isuldur is a badass because he stopped Sauron with a broken sword, but Iluvatar is the badass because he stopped Sauron with a hobbit. -Malleus Arianorum

"Tangency Edition" D&D would have no classes or races, but 17 genders to choose from. -TristramEvans

Gronan of Simmerya

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« Reply #5 on: December 14, 2017, 07:30:49 PM »
I'll respond in more detail in a week or so when it will be more than a drive by.
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wombat1

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« Reply #6 on: December 14, 2017, 07:36:32 PM »
Well, let's see, in 1303 the crown jewels of England were stolen right out of the royal treasury. Paul Doherty wrote a good book about the robbery, the hunt for the conspirators, and their punishment. In a scenario inspired by that, the characters could be hired to steal the jewels or to work on the building containing the treasury so that the jewels could be stolen; in which case they might be various sorts of rogues or various sorts of craftsmen.  Royal bureaucrats and local officials which could be any sort of minor warrior or minor clerk or minor guildsman, have to get them back before the king (Edward I, so played, obviously, by Sean Connery) notices the loss and then there are all sorts of unpleasantries.
« Last Edit: December 14, 2017, 07:42:24 PM by wombat1 »

Gronan of Simmerya

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The Medieval-Authentic PC Party - What do they do?
« Reply #7 on: December 14, 2017, 07:41:19 PM »
Quote from: CRKrueger;1013798

What about those who aren't actually part of the official fighting?  How does a group of PCs meander about the English countryside coming into towns, talking to the yokels and being hired to do something?  Doesn't really happen quite the same way.

Quote from: Gronan of Simmerya;1013796

Not to mention intrigue, smuggling, arms running, and other forms of mayhem.

And if goods travel by water, there WILL be pirates.  And if goods have tarrifs, there WILL be smugglers.  And if merchandise travels across land, there WILL be bandits.

Are you them, or are you fighting them?  Especially since every free man is required by law to assist in such matters.
You should go to GaryCon.  Period.

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wombat1

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« Reply #8 on: December 14, 2017, 07:47:16 PM »
When I was putting together my Call of Cthulhu game set in ancient Rome, I scoured as many of the mysteries by Steven Saylor or Lindsey Davis as I could find, looking for any idea that I could give a "Mythos twist"  as well as a number of original source histories.  I imagine the same would work with medieval mysteries, by, say, Michael Jecks or Margaret Fraser, or with the histories of real life figures that figure in those novels.

In one series of the Fraser novels, the heroine is a nun who wants to stay in her cloister, but these bodies keep popping up with a severe case of death.  In another the hero is attached to a troupe of wandering players.  In the Jecks series the heroes are a retired knight with a secret, and what is, essentially, a tax collector, but these bodies keep popping up with a severe case of death.
« Last Edit: December 14, 2017, 07:51:30 PM by wombat1 »

EOTB

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The Medieval-Authentic PC Party - What do they do?
« Reply #9 on: December 14, 2017, 07:48:13 PM »
In my experience, it becomes Top Secret/James Bond with swords.
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CRKrueger

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« Reply #10 on: December 14, 2017, 07:56:07 PM »
Quote from: Gronan of Simmerya;1013803
And if goods travel by water, there WILL be pirates.  And if goods have tarrifs, there WILL be smugglers.  And if merchandise travels across land, there WILL be bandits.

Are you them, or are you fighting them?  Especially since every free man is required by law to assist in such matters.

So to military, we've added criminals or law enforcement (vigilantes might be good for a one off, but what then?).

You see where I'm going with this line of questioning, right?
Even the the "cutting edge" storygamers for all their talk of narrative, plot, and drama are fucking obsessed with the god damned rules they use. - Estar

Yes, Sean Connery's thumb does indeed do megadamage. - Spinachcat

Isuldur is a badass because he stopped Sauron with a broken sword, but Iluvatar is the badass because he stopped Sauron with a hobbit. -Malleus Arianorum

"Tangency Edition" D&D would have no classes or races, but 17 genders to choose from. -TristramEvans

Aglondir

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The Medieval-Authentic PC Party - What do they do?
« Reply #11 on: December 14, 2017, 07:59:43 PM »
How historically accurate is Game of Thrones? Im not talking about dragons and white walkers,  but the mundane stuff.  If it is accurate, what year and region? I've heard War of the Roses, but I'm not a history expert.

Which raises a related question: If you're not a history expert,  what are the top 10 bullet points on how to run a historically accurate game?
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wombat1

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« Reply #12 on: December 14, 2017, 08:02:20 PM »
Quote from: CRKrueger;1013808
So to military, we've added criminals or law enforcement (vigilantes might be good for a one off, but what then?).

You see where I'm going with this line of questioning, right?

Well, theoretically we could steal the plot or theme of any piece of medieval literature, too.  So we could take the idea of the Decameron, in which our heroes, such as they are, flee from the plague and pass the time by swapping naughty tales in the middle of nowhere.  But frankly, having seen my gaming group, I don't really want to hear about their fantasies

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« Reply #13 on: December 14, 2017, 08:19:36 PM »
There are going to be challenges in that social class sometimes figures in how mobile you are (how capable you are to freely leave the service of another), and parties of mixed intent (many different classes in the same party). But something that comes to mind is the religious pilgrimage. A party could be of a collection of classes and say, all traveling to some holy site.
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The Medieval-Authentic PC Party - What do they do?
« Reply #14 on: December 14, 2017, 08:26:33 PM »
There's a nice book called Hawkquest, where some noble is captured by the Turk emperor, and he demands ransom of a bunch of hunting hawks, the particular ones that can only be found in Iceland. So our hero goes off on a long journey and of course his trip is not smooth and easy....
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