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  • Deadlands idea

    What if in Deadlands, instead of having the Reckoning started by a Native American shaman, it was actually started by William Clarke Quantrill? Quantrill in real life was a Confederate sympathizer who led a group of guerrilla who massacred the people of Lawrence, Kansas in 1863. What if the massacre was actually a mass human sacrifice and brought the Reckoners to Earth? This would be both more historically accurate and more culturally sensitive by making a racist mass murderer the villain instead of a fictional Native American character.

    What do you guys think?


    “It is a far far better thing I do than I have ever done...” Sidney Carton’s last line before going to the guillotine to save his True Love and her husband

  • #2
    Nah, because having a racist strawman doesn't make anything better


    You've been playing around the magic that is black
    But all the powerful magical mysteries never gave a single thing back

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Dwight View Post
      Nah, because having a racist strawman doesn't make anything better
      if it’s a real person whose racism is historically accurate, he’s hardly a “straw man”. That term implies a hyperbole created to be easier to argue against than the truth. So to the extent that Deadlands suffers from demonizing Native resistance to genocide, I do think reassigning responsibility there may be a good idea, at least for a lot of people’s tables.

      i have considered pushing back the timeline and making the original unleashing be something the Klan did as an act of revenge for the defeat of the Confederacy and abolition.


      Check out my expansion to the Realm of Brass and Shadow

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      • #4
        Possibly talking a different edition here, but my two cents.

        So, how would Quantrill know about this, and what would his motivation have been? The Confederacy's standing in the war was an incidental thing that resulted from the appearance of ghost rock not a designed thing because the Reckoners and the Manitou don't care about sides in that conflict. So why would a racist suddenly decide "Hmm you know I've got no proof of it, but maybe those ignorant savages actually have working magic that I can unleash to further the cause." The most likely option would be having it be done on accident, but at that point it doesn't matter that the person doing it was a bad person since at worst they're the unfortunate dupe of the Reckoners and their morality is irrelevant.

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        • #5
          Maybe don't focus solely on the man's race and instead look at his motivations. A man, driven by grief and dispar over the loss of his people turned to some dark powers for revenge. Hes not some mustache twirling plantation owner going "Muh slaves!" Whitewashing the setting completely invalides the native American factions trying to fight the darkness. It also turns everyone south of the Mason dixon into a cartoon villain.
          Last edited by Dwight; 05-21-2020, 02:50 PM.


          You've been playing around the magic that is black
          But all the powerful magical mysteries never gave a single thing back

          Comment


          • #6
            Yeah, it takes a lot of the nuance out of the setting. Raven was always the most interesting antagonist, even going on to declare war on his former masters.


            Prone to being a Classic Curmudgeon, goshdarned whippersnappers...

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            • #7
              A thing on my part, I admit I haven't read most of the modules and such for the Weird West setting but I don't recall Raven being portrayed as a major villain. Like maybe I'm missing something, but my knowledge till you got to Hell on Earth he was more of a thing that existed to explain how the situation happened. If we were going with actual human villains beyond the Reckoners then Stone would probably fill that role.

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              • #8
                Stone is their agent on earth, Raven hangs out in the spirit lands doing spirit land things.


                You've been playing around the magic that is black
                But all the powerful magical mysteries never gave a single thing back

                Comment


                • #9
                  Raven is central, but not in a "lets go shoot the son of a bitch" way. He has a massive network of agents, the cult of the raven, ties to both the Coyote Confederation and the Souix Nation. And y'know has a big metaplot role.

                  My 7 year campaign had Raven as the big bad, ferreting out his cultists, repairing relations between the factions that he'd broken. This was years before Last Sons came out and all of my possie had serious respect for him as an enemy, mostly because he ahs actual plans they can interfere with. Stone just wanders around shootin folks, Gimme is sat in LA as it's ruler, and Helstromme is likewise mostly in his lab. Chasing Ravenites took them all over the continent, coast to coast, from Canada to Mexico...


                  Prone to being a Classic Curmudgeon, goshdarned whippersnappers...

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Dwight View Post
                    Maybe don't focus solely on the man's race and instead look at his motivations. A man, driven by grief and dispar over the loss of his people turned to some dark powers for revenge. Hes not some mustache twirling plantation owner going "Muh slaves!" Whitewashing the setting completely invalides the native American factions trying to fight the darkness. It also turns everyone south of the Mason dixon into a cartoon villain.
                    Again - you’re talking like portraying the evil of the eras slavers is some how hyperbolous. There is a point where prentending the founders of the KKK were nuanced people is disingenuous Grey washing of real human evil.


                    Check out my expansion to the Realm of Brass and Shadow

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by glamourweaver View Post

                      Again - you’re talking like portraying the evil of the eras slavers is some how hyperbolous. There is a point where prentending the founders of the KKK were nuanced people is disingenuous Grey washing of real human evil.
                      Just as disingenuous as says the actions of one fictional man who happens to be a native American somehow demonizes their entire struggle against genocide

                      And simply saying the motivations of the Klan founders were "ok we evil now" shows a lack of knowledge on the subject.

                      Before you start, no I'm not defending the Klan. What they did was monstrous and inhuman but to water down their motivations is a disservice to history.
                      Last edited by Dwight; 05-21-2020, 04:48 PM.


                      You've been playing around the magic that is black
                      But all the powerful magical mysteries never gave a single thing back

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Thank you guys. This discussion is really helpful.


                        “It is a far far better thing I do than I have ever done...” Sidney Carton’s last line before going to the guillotine to save his True Love and her husband

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I figured maybe Quantrill was trying to open a doorway to Hell to bring in demons to destroy the Union army and got the Reckoners instead.


                          “It is a far far better thing I do than I have ever done...” Sidney Carton’s last line before going to the guillotine to save his True Love and her husband

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Penelope View Post
                            I figured maybe Quantrill was trying to open a doorway to Hell to bring in demons to destroy the Union army and got the Reckoners instead.
                            Why then and not during the bleeding Kansas years of 1855 – 1861?


                            You've been playing around the magic that is black
                            But all the powerful magical mysteries never gave a single thing back

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Because that’s when Quantrill massacred the people of Lawrence. 1863. Him and Bloody Bill Anderson. This really happened.

                              Quantrill’s Raiders operated in Kansas throughout the Civil War until Quantrill was tried and hanged for treason and war crimes sometime in 1865.


                              “It is a far far better thing I do than I have ever done...” Sidney Carton’s last line before going to the guillotine to save his True Love and her husband

                              Comment

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