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  • #16
    Canonically, New York fits this for most pantheons. The city itself has strong Theoi and Orisha presences, and Columbia enforces a Pax Americana over any inter-pantheon or Titanic conflicts.

    Neall Raemonn Price
    Beleaguered Scion Developer


    • #17
      Originally posted by Neall View Post
      Canonically, New York fits this for most pantheons. The city itself has strong Theoi and Orisha presences, and Columbia enforces a Pax Americana over any inter-pantheon or Titanic conflicts.

      I would love to read something like a "New York by the Gods" (I'm calling my project so far "Rio de Janeiro by the Gods"), being an official book or a Nexus material. Could I do something like this? Maybe with enough (a lot of) research. But for now, I'm trying my lucky with Rio. I don't consider myself an avid knower of things about Rio, but doing my research and efforting my best to portray it right. Not too far away from a true portrait, but also not too fantasy to a surreal point.

      I don't consider myself as a writer good enough to write about a place I never actually met giving it a soul. I could, but after so much research that maybe another person better fit could do with less effort. This first try is giving me a lot of thoughts for at least "what not to do" when writing about cities. Maybe I write about other cities for the Nexus after this.

      And I can not express how gratefull I am for your words, Neall.
      Last edited by Hayashi; 01-08-2020, 09:20 AM.


      • #18
        Btw, I'm struggling to "measure the mythness" of the scenario in general. I mean, it still has to be "the city as we know/imagine it is, but with a twist". It's incredibly hard to measure that.

        I've some historical questions about the World, too. Like: The Inquisition happened? They really hunted other no-Christian faiths? Or this was minimized in comparison to what happened in our world? (Like: Yes, it happened. But it didn't all this damage).

        Thinking about to say that many of the faithful from the European gods (Theoi, Aesir and Tuatha) came to Rio in the Colonial period, excited about the idea of exploring and discovering a new land. I really don't know if this is over-stretching the idea. The Orisha are a really strong force in all the country today, brought initially by the slaves, and being readapted under Catholic guises, as Scion: Hero mentions. I know pantheons are not restricted by ethnicities or respective cults (if an Inuit God wants to act in Africa, even that no one there even knows his name, he totally cans), but I really don't wanna cause that feeling to over-strech (in the absence of a better word). In short: How much should a "Historical revision of a Historical event to be fantastical?" I mean, sounds really cool to make the Christ the Redeemer an avatar of Zeus, or a sleeping colossus; but maybe: "The Bandeirantes were a group supported by the Theoi to diminish the American faiths" not so cool.
        Last edited by Hayashi; 01-08-2020, 07:25 PM.


        • #19
          Originally posted by Hayashi View Post
          Btw, I'm struggling to "measure the mythness" of the scenario in general. I mean, it still has to be "the city as we know/imagine it is, but with a twist". It's incredibly hard to measure that.

          I've some historical questions about the World, too. Like: The Inquisition happened? They really hunted other no-Christian faiths? Or this was minimized in comparison to what happened in our world? (Like: Yes, it happened. But it didn't all this damage).
          It's EXACTLY why I do not like vanilla Scion 2E setting. Premise of 'Gods and their worship is everywhere' changes history too much - and without and 'the World timeline book', it's very hard to gauge how modern days in setting will look like where Gods are everywhere and intervene on history all the time. It's much easier simply to say 'Gods are in hiding, but they are there to intervene from time to time, so our history is the same'. That's why I made my Scion 2E hack setting, based on concepts from American Gods.
          Last edited by wyrdhamster; 01-09-2020, 02:17 AM.

          My stuff for Realms of Pugmire, Scion 2E, CoD Contagion, Dark Eras, VtR 2E, WtF 2E, MtAw 2E, MtC 2E & BtP
          LGBT+ through Ages
          LGBT+ in CoD games


          • #20
            My main problem with the "gods in hiding" concept is that it implies an adversarial relationship between the gods and .... what exactly? (Ive found no answer to that that didnt make me unconfortable on some level)

            Ultimately the gods dont need to be in hiding to explain their low involvement in The World.
            Mainly the gods have their own tier appropriate problems to deal with in their overworlds and terra incognita.
            What does Set care for such small things as wars and nations when he has to fight Apep every single night?

            If something happens in the World that the gods find a problem with or is of particular interest to them, then they dont need to get involved themselves, they just send a scion. Thats what they are for after all.

            And we already have accounts of the involvmwnt of scions in our history (well mostly mythology but for the World myths are history).
            Even in our world you will have these accounts of people faced with unsurmountable odds and ... uh surmounting them.
            But even then while these people will direct history a bit they are still limited to only being an individual and it takes alot of people to direct historys course.

            As for the World being the same, it may just be my take on it, but ive always taken it to mean that the modern era is recognizable to us, there are cars, the internet and movies.
            But the car brands are all different, some movies we know were never made and famous websites have different names than what we are used to.

            Completed campaign: Scion 2nd Edition. Les Légendes Currently playing: Being a dad for a 3 year old daughter and a 1 year old son.


            • #21
              Gods in Hiding is dumb and I'm glad 2e threw it out. There's no good reason for them to pretend to not exist, and given that Scion Adventures start with "Here's a magic spear, go kill a giant wolf" it'd be REALLY dumb to say nobody notices.

              It happens in American Gods due to the idea that Belief and Worship shapes the Gods and grants them power. This isn't true in Scion, so there's no reason for that to apply.

              It's like this in Percy Jackson because, although executed decently, Riordan still wanted to stick to the whole 'Hidden World' thing.

              There's no reason for there to be a Masquerade in Scion other than to pay lip service to a genre convention, and if there's no real reason other than "Because that's how we've always done it" then why NOT change it up?

              And don't bring up "History would have change, this strains my disbelief" because that's still less straining than the Hidden Gods thing. A parallel:

              Do you read American comic books or watch those Cinematic Versions Thereof? Do you ever ask why THEIR history mostly maps to ours? If Themyscira, various versions of Atlantis, people who can lift and throw tanks or shoot fire from their eyes, and they've been around HOW long? And yet World War 2 happened as it did in our world, and thus World War 1 did as well. The United States of America exist, as do most modern countries. And they seem to be going through sociopolticial situations that map pretty damn close to our history.

              And yet, this is just something accepted. We just go "You know what? If we created an entire goddamn alternate history we'd have to spend an entire trade volume alone explaining how this is different from our modern world, and we don't have time for that, so just pretend that things shook out roughly the same and we'll roll with it."

              That's how I roll with Scion 2e. Yes, history could have gone any number of ways, but if we say that history shifted so that Washington never became a state I couldn't make Mythic Seattle for some of my games, and I'm not gonna give that up for the sake of some CinemaSins tier nitpicking.

              'The history would change' is a non-issue that doesn't matter one iota, and I applaud the 2e writers for going "You know what? Let's just have the Gods and Divine be a known thing"

              Anyway! Hayashi - Some advice on how a Mythic version of Rio would look. This is just some general advice I'd have people apply to most major cities in The World.
              • Worship - In many cities there are temples and churches everywhere. Because there's a lot of religious people in our world. This is true in the World of Scion, it's just that they're not all to various Christian denominations which I couldn't tell apart if you put a gun to my head. So yeah, Mythic Rio probably has quite a few different Faiths and Religions there. Some brought over by the colonizers, yes, but probably some from what tribes you can piece together the beliefs of. If you haven't seen it, Manbat did a writeup of various Godly beings that I think originated from around that area.
              • The Divine and Supernatural - Now, here's something to keep in mind about the Mythic in history: Nobody EVER doubted it existed. The Greeks knew that centaurs existed and roamed the plains. They just did it, you know, there. *Gestures into the distance* Most day-to-day life for the mortals of Mythic Rio will proceed like it does in Modern Rio. The street layout is similar, there are cars, the government buildings are in roughly close spots. But, for those who know the city, it has its secrets.
                • Take this corner. Duck through this alleyway. Make sure you rub this statue on your way down, and then step out, not into an intersection like most do, but into a market of strange folks selling strange things. Some call these kinds of places the Mythic Underground. They don't really advertise themselves, because they like to live their own lives. But for those who know where to look, it can be found.
              • How visible? Well that's up to you to decide, and the metric is "What fits your game the best?" Are you running a game where a J-pop idol who's openly a kitsune fits the tone? Are you running a game where that's just a rumor that some people get accused of sometimes, and they're occasionally right? I tend to vary depending on what tier my game is, but at Hero it usually goes "By and large keeps to itself, but there if you know where to look"
              • History - This one's really up to you. But some things to keep in mind: All myths are true, including the Christian ones. Christianity, as well as Judeism and Islam, are all very real religions in the World. So yes, the Inquisition probably happened. But, it's assumed that worship of the Pantheons in the game never stopped.
                • Now, OPP will probably never write a Christian Pantheon, because there's a metric fuckton of baggage associated with it, and weighting in on it is not so much a can of worms as it is a can-shaped gate to a Worm Universe.

              Disclaimer: I'll huff, grump, and defend my position, but if you're having fun I'll never say you're doing it wrong.


              • #22
                This is a lot of stuff. I'll try to answer it all...

                About Gods in Hiding vs. Gods in Public: I think honestly that's a style question. There are people who like they hidden, there are people who like them in public. I'm trying to writte a thing that pleases both, but a little more to the "Public" version, since that's what the canonic World uses. I'm planning (among other things) a bar named "Odin's Table" (now, just a question. I searched really hard about it, but didn't find an answer. There is a name to the Odin's banquet/table/ceremony with the Einherjar? I used that name in absence of something better). It's owned by an Incarnation of Odin. He found out he likes soccer (or football if you that American) after all and decided to open a place for the crowds of fans and cheers to celebrate its victories, or drown their defeats. Many Scions also celebrate in there. So, yes... We have some Gods openly walking around.

                About the Odin's Table: Yes, it's possible some rival crowds fight against each other, but if the things scalate, Odin knows how to... crowd control.

                About the Tupi-Guarani Gods: Yes, I know about that too. Manbat even asked me to review his text. I really enjoyed that pantheon, but I don't know how that can be quoted in Nexus material because Nexus rules. Like, can I make mention to material that is not mine? (I was wondering about the possibility to make mention to the SPEAR Contract in Rio as well).

                The lore I'm using until now (anything can change until publishing... Gods know when), the native nations that lived in the region that is Rio today were almost extinct because of the conflict between Portugal and France for the region. Portugal won with some help of one of them. We have some descendants of these tribes even today, but not as nations anymore. They lost their lands, almost all of them died by the war, diseases, slavery or persecution. They still ressent the guassú tata ("Great Fire", in Guarani) and blame the strangers for it? They try their best to just adapt to these new times and survive? The ones who got to hide in the forests become xenophobic after this? I don't answer this. The SG does.

                About the "measure of mythness": I have no problem with chuches of all these faiths all around. The problem is what I call this "measure of mythness". Like, let us say that ALL the thousand/millions of bars in the city are mantained by copies of Incarnations of [insert your favorite deity here]. All of them are the same. Ctrl+C, Ctrl+V all around. So, that can be quite amazing in the first few times you enter a bar and is greeted by this same dude. And then that starts to get boring. I would say that is like to measure the "epicness" in D&D. "If everybody is the same special, then nobody is" type of thing. Yes, I aggree with "there has to be special places", but the problem is for the special to be special, some ground has to be not special. Like the books say: "9 in 10 times nothing supernatural happens. But then, there is the 10th time". What is hard is to measure this. There is not a magic formula or an equation that says: "Yes, this is an ok amount of magical/mythical/religious stuff happening". It's more an art than a science by that point. Doing all this without breaking the "themes" of the city (yes, I'm writing about that too), it's one more ball to the juggling.

                About the Christian stuff: I think about this worm universe all the time, and I'm really gratefull for OPP not be following that direction so soon. The directions I'm following at the moment is that some faifhfull of the Teotl, for instance, disguised their cult as Catholic for better entrace in the land. One of the thoughts I have: One certain cathedral in Rio is located in the top of a huge mountain. There is nothing more there except the church isolated of all the things in there. By what I researched the church was built as answer to a grace. The landlord/farmer/owner of many slaves was surprised by a snake during a riding. The snake was eaten by a lizzard, and he considered this a divine providence, then he uses his slaves to build a church in the top of a mountain. The guy had many places for possible construction but he decided to put it in the middle of nowhere and making all the contruction work at least 100 times harder. But, he was not working in the construction, so... damn those slaves. It looks to me like a serious sacrifice (of others, of course). Not exactly Teotl style, but surely not Christian as well... Well, just a thought at the moment. I don't have intent to offend anyone writing this. If that is the case, consider the idea burnt.

                I think that's all for now. Thank you very much for all this return and atention. It really keeps me moving.
                Last edited by Hayashi; 01-09-2020, 05:21 PM. Reason: Editing the church story.


                • #23
                  Re: Mentioning other Nexus stuff - I don't thing there's anything wrong with mentioning the Pantheon by name and plugging Manbat's project in the foreward or end notes of your project

                  Disclaimer: I'll huff, grump, and defend my position, but if you're having fun I'll never say you're doing it wrong.


                  • #24
                    My memory of Percy Jackson was that people who aren't part of the mythological world just sort of accept/ignore mythical stuff (the Mists?). Which is certainly an option for Scion, I guess. I think/hope that the Companion book has this as one of the dials you can adjust for Iron/Bronze/etc. settings. Likewise the idea of just how much direct influence gods and their agents may have played in history.

                    Regarding the idea of a city where all pantheons meet, one possible idea is that of Metropolis, the Terra Incognita ur-city - the very idea of cities itself - that connects with every city in The World, both real and imagined. There are similar concepts in rpgs like Kult and Champions, and I've used it in various WoD games. I can easily see various regions and neighborhoods reflecting different pantheons/ethnic groups as well as various urban genres (noir, cyberpunk, hip hop, etc.) done through a mythic lens.

                    Added: The very core of this Metropolis is probably a small building or park that has very noticeable Mesopotamian, Indian, Chinese, and Egyptian elements, perhaps with some sort of unidentifiable object (Atlantian?) in the center.
                    Last edited by No One of Consequence; 01-09-2020, 05:27 PM.

                    What is tolerance? It is the consequence of humanity. We are all formed of frailty and error; let us pardon reciprocally each other's folly. That is the first law of nature.
                    Voltaire, "Tolerance" (1764)


                    • #25
                      Hi, guys. Trying not to sound too much "vlog like", but I'm writing everyday in this "Rio for Scion" idea. Until now we have 14-ish pages speaking about the History and Geography of the town (its neighborhoods more generally described). For the moment this is really the 1st part of what I planned. There is not much "mythical-made-for-TTRPG" material yet. That is intentional. My idea is to write a scenario that even if never knew nothing about Rio, you can have a precise idea and feeling of it is like. Why the things are like that (that's why I considered History important. And we talk of it since the "discovery" until the recently past years). I hope I got to pass the soul of the city successfuly. The mythical-magical-out-of-everyday enters after this to be ready. I'm also researching local legends (some urban legends) and will write more about them later.

                      One of the things I really wanted to show is a chapter recently written. It tells the main holydays in the city, explaining why they are important (and other not so much), and gives the general idea of how the people of Rio lives, celebrates, grieves and... goes to work. Hope you all like.


                      A Year Passes in Rio
                      As in many other places of the World, the week in Brazil is divided in five working days (Monday to Friday) and two days of rest, called weekend (Saturday and Sunday). Depending on the job you have, Saturday is what is called facultative day. Maybe you work, maybe you don’t, maybe you work just half of the time of the normal working day. That’s up to you and your boss. That’s what normally happens. Some professions may have different working schemes. Schools usually work during the working days as well. It’s not rare to see the streets so crowded during the rush hours to the point we have traffic jams in the main paths. Excepting this, traffic jams in Rio are just usual-ly caused by some serious accident or any other kind of emergency.

                      There are lots of traditions and superstitions about the New Year in Brazil. The color of your clothes you wear in the midnight’s January 1st means what you are wishing for the year that begins. White for peace (the more traditional and classical choice), yellow for riches, red for love, etc. Being specifically in Rio means that you are able to enjoy the traditional New Year party by the sands of Copacabana beach, where the new year will be received by the fireworks over all the facade of the Copacabana Palace Hotel, and, if you wish, enjoy the supersti-tions (also called simpatias, in Portuguese) about the occasion. Hop over seven easy waves as soon as the year begins, make offerings to Yemojá-Oboto (more known as Iemanjá in Brazil) sent to her in little ships, and hug and kiss your loved ones in the first moments of the new year. This means that you wish to stay and have good moments with them.

                      January 20th is the day of the patron of the city, S. Sebastian. Special religious celebrations happen during this day, but it’s anyway a holyday.

                      It’s said that the year in Brazil only officially starts after the Carnival, without a doubt, the larger event in town. It happens in all the country, during the four days before the Ash Wednesday. Each region of the country has their own customs to celebrate the Carnival. In Rio, the people take the parties to the streets, celebrating with intense music and joy in big groups called blocos. Costumes, masks, wigs, samba, confetti, and serpentine are everywhere during the parties that in some cases can go to all the days without interruption. The climax of the Carnival is the Parade of the Samba Schools. These Schools are actu-ally recreative gremmies that plan, create, compose, rehearsal, and work really hard during the rest of the year to present a good spectacle. Each one of the Schools represents one region or neighborhood of the city or a city of the Baixada. Some of these Schools may have zealous fans among the residents of their locals. The parade of each school abords a theme they choose for that year, and the final result can not be defined as less than spectacle. Allegoric cars, dancers, and singers are what is normally expected this show has, but special effects, illusions and daring acrobatics have been used in few occasions. During the first two evenings and nights of this event, they perform their show in the Sambadrome Marquês da Sapucaí, a space built specially for this occasion. At the day before last of the Carnival, one School is chosen as the champion of that year. She will then repeat the parade in the last day of Carnival, closing the event. This decision is made by the sums of notes that go from 0 to 10 to each technical aspect of the Parade. Time, beauty, coordination, originality, each of the wings separately, etc., made by a group of juries. This canvass is also accompanied by members of each School, and each decimal matters.

                      With the Carnival over, it’s time to get back to “seriousness”. Some more traditional and pious people can make abstentions during the period after the Carnival until the end of the lent, 40 days later.

                      The month of April starts with the “Day of Lies”, April 1st. It’s not a recognized holyday, but most people use this day to play tricks and pranks in their friends and closest ones. People have the right to say anything, and then take it back announcing that was an “April 1st!” and normally everyone is ok with that and laughs about it.

                      The second Friday of April is the Friday of Passion, the day in memory to the Christ’s Crucifixion. To celebrate his resurrection in the Christian Easter, people give each other chocolate gifts, usually in the shape of eggs (that’s what Brazilians generally understand when you say “Easter egg”) sold specifically during this period.

                      April 21st is the Day of Tiradentes. Martir of the Inconfidence movement from Minas Gerais state, but the entire country considers the day of his death a holyday. Soon after, April 23rd, is the day of another Catholic saint very important for many in Rio and patron of Portugal, S. George, celebrated in all the state of Rio de Janeiro.

                      May is traditionally considered the month of the brides, and is considered auspicious to be wed during this month. Its 1st day is the day of the work, ironically, a holyday where no one (except, of course, emergency works and other essential services) works. In the second Sunday of this month, is celebrated the Mother’s Day. The custom is to present your mother with a surprise gift.
                      June is considered the month of romantic love because its 12th is the equivalent to the Valentine’s Day. The day you are supposed to gift your loved one and be gifted back. The day precedes the 13th, that is actually the day of S. Anthony, who fulfills a role similar to S. Valentin (a wedding-maker saint).

                      June also can happen to celebrate the Corpus Christi day. It’s a Catholic holyday to celebrate again the Christ’s resurrection, sixty days after the Easter, so it can also happen to be celebrated in May. The celebrations of the Corpus Christi count with processions, some nicely adorned.

                      August is considered by many the worst month of the year. There is this superstition that this is a month of bad luck, and that seems to last forever to be ended. However, just like the Mother’s Day, the Father’s Day happen in its second Sunday. Also just like the Mother’s Day, people are supposed to present their fathers with gifts.

                      September’s most notable day is certainly the 7th, the holyday that celebrates the independence from Portugal. Bigger cities organize parades of the military forces at their disposal. Soldiers march in impeccable order and the word of the day is order and organization.

                      September 27th is the day of S. Cosmas and Damian. Traditionally, the children have permission to run around, knocking doors for candies. It’s a lot similar to the North American Halloween, with exception that the children are not in costumes for this.

                      The October 12th is a double holyday. It celebrates the day of Our Lady of Aparecida, Catholic patron of all Brazil, but it’s also the Chil-dren’s day. Symmetrical to the Mother’s and Father’s day, it’s time to give gifts to the little ones. The month also presents the day of the teachers (15th), trade (17th), workers of the trade (19th), and the day of the government worker (28th). All of them are considered mostly facultative holydays, and have no specific traditions tied to them (but it is considered nice to present your teacher if you are on school that day).

                      November 2nd is the day of the dead. Its custom is to visit the graves of your relatives and close ones, clean them and adorn them with flowers, specially if their death was yet this year. Rituals that bring them to the memory are also taken. Be it drink to them at the bars or simply talk about them with people that met them.

                      In November 15th is celebrated the Proclamation of the Republic. That is a day celebrated mostly by militaries (who actually made the country a republic) and workers of all the levels of the government, to meditate about their public services.

                      It’s a recent holyday, but the Day of Black Conscience happens at the November 20th. It has been celebrated since 2011, at the day of the death of Zumbi dos Palmares, leader of the Palmares Quilombo, and considered a symbol of resistance against the slavery and oppression.

                      Finally, the end of the year approaches, and maybe the most im-portant Christian celebration happens at December 25th, Christmas. All over Brazil, it’s tradition to adorn your Christmas Tree (in Brazil, they normally are artificial trees, that are disassembled and kept guarded during the rest of the year), and have a celebratory supper with your closest ones (family, if possible) at midnight of 25th. Many special dishes are traditionally sold or prepared (which you prefer) during these days, like the rabanada (fried bread covered in sugar and cinnamon), panetone (a light massed cake with crystalized fruits inside. A more modern version of this Italian recipe is the chocotone, that replaces the fruits for chocolate). The Christmas is considered a time for reconciliation and peace, and many people inclined to make amends to those who they hurt during the year.

                      The days after Christmas normally enrolls the preparations to the New Year, and the cycle restarts.
                      Last edited by Hayashi; 01-11-2020, 06:50 PM.


                      • #26
                        Oh, very nice. Definitely gives me a good feel for what happens in the city.

                        Disclaimer: I'll huff, grump, and defend my position, but if you're having fun I'll never say you're doing it wrong.


                        • #27
                          Just informing, I uploaded what I've written so far in the Nexus. You can purchase it in:

                          Btw, I accept any advice about what is in there. This includes the price. I just thought that a book of this size would cost something around that.

                          I'm wondering at this moment about making more scenario books (of course, except you all hated this, and then, for the preservation of everybody's patience, I'll stop). Not exactly books about other cities existing in the World, but cities that goes with some themes. Like: "A city in the World in the desert". Or: "A city in the World that is under-seas"...

                          One of the core things Scion 2nd proposes is exactly "we don't have a "map" for the World. Everything is as the story needs to be." So, I think to have many cities written like if they were a real thing is a step back. The World is formless, and by writing this kind of thing, my idea is not give it a rigid form, but just a suggestion of what it can be.

                          And that's it for now, I guess....

                          Edit: Now the books is pay what you want.
                          Last edited by Hayashi; 01-23-2020, 06:18 AM.