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[Fan Dark Era] Conquest of Paradise - Age of Exploration

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  • #31
    Originally posted by wyrdhamster View Post
    Theme: Colonialism
    Colonialism is the policy of a nation seeking to extend or retain its authority over other people or territories. It’s involves unequal relationships between the colonial power and the colony and often between the colonists and the indigenous peoples. It’s ambiguously rated – on one hand it’s giving advances of particular periods greater civilization to less developed societies. On the other – it creates dependency on colonial power, often with forgetting of indigenous culture. Many times it’s very hard to judge was colonialism being good or bad for particular population, in the end.
    There are certain subjects you might want to be careful on. You're talking about a process that involved genocide, slavery and racism. Trying to pass moral; judgment on a historical process is almost never a good idea.

    Also, using 'greater' and 'less developed' is really questionable.


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    • #32
      Originally posted by Michael View Post
      There are certain subjects you might want to be careful on. You're talking about a process that involved genocide, slavery and racism. Trying to pass moral; judgment on a historical process is almost never a good idea.

      Also, using 'greater' and 'less developed' is really questionable.
      Theme is not thing you pass one stance on - it's much more general question of the stories, that players answer with the play. And when talking about Age of Exploration, you cannot run from this things in stories. It's literally the history of colonialism.


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      • #33
        Intro to the part about fantastic places mages looks with Sleepers. Practical examples – like Kingdom of Prester John, Ophir or Seven Cities of Cibola – I will add later.

        Many Atlantis(is) – Looking for Time Before

        What would be called Time Before is sirens song in souls of mages. In this Era circulate in circles of nobility and royality many fabulous tales of lost kingdoms, hidden civilizations or places of great power and riches. Awakened are going with Sleepers on search of those, understanding that they can be remnants of true Atlantis – or at least places of great power. Knowing how Sleepers and Panscryptia works on wonders of magic, newly consolidated Mysterium double it’s efforts to watch over those expeditions and try to stir normal explorers away from true Supernal might. Rest of Diamond is not far behind them – Arrows want to test themselves against devilish traps and guardians of those places. Silver Ladder wants to collect more proofs of One Atlantis being source of all magical civilization and uncover old laws. Guardians of Veil are making sure Sleepers or heretic mages would not get their hands on powers the do not understand.

        Many times Awakened on the road fake their death using their Arcana when they are sure Sleepers are going other way – to rise again, in secret, and bypass ancient locks and riddles to enter millennia old temples or tombs. Once they are sure they opened the new sight and cleared it, they use magic one again, to become mundane members of returning expedition to homeland. Mysterium is hoarding their treasures in homeland Athenea, to preserve signs of ancient magic. Rest of mages just lock their uncovered relics and Artifacts in their cabals sanctum, to use in their future conflicts or adventures.


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        • #34
          Originally posted by wyrdhamster View Post
          Theme is not thing you pass one stance on - it's much more general question of the stories, that players answer with the play. And when talking about Age of Exploration, you cannot run from this things in stories. It's literally the history of colonialism.
          Okay. I'm saying your little piece is pretty offensive. You're calling 'ambiguous', a process that involved genocide, slavery and racism.


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          • #35
            Originally posted by Michael View Post
            Okay. I'm saying your little piece is pretty offensive. You're calling 'ambiguous', a process that involved genocide, slavery and racism.
            To the people of that Era - no, it was not offensive. It was the same as war - 'necessity' of that time. And if I remember we still playing with pre-Modern Eras with war or slavery in them - like all the Roman or Alexander times. To people of XV century, colonialism was - in their point of view - 'helping' lesser societies. I'm not saying it was okay, in historical terms - but from their position, they were doing God's work.

            We are not the same people as our ancestors, but it's what you got to play with historical settings, in the end.


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            • #36
              ok, let's settle it right now-

              Through modern eyes, colonialism is not considered to be a positive thing. Many people were murdered, raped or harmed in ways we can't imagined in the name of colonialism. However, through the eyes of the colonialists, they were doing good things, like "bringing civilization to the barbarians". The Age of Discovery is, without doubt, a colonialist Era. As Wyrd has said, you can't ignore it- it is, in fact, the theme of the Era. However, there are ways to handle such delicate matters. I believe that Wyrd simply choose the wrong words to describe the Era- which in the case of delicate matters, could be crucial. However, if you are playing the Age of Discovery, you are likely to take the part of the colonialist instead of the occupied citizen. Players are going to deal with the consequences of being a colonialist and taking over another person's homeland in the name of progress and state. Some of them may even start the game as their characters (not the players) think that colonialism is the way to go- but when they stumble upon the deeds done in the name of progress, things may start to change inside of them- some may find the strength to challenge the world they live in. Others may break. At any case, dealing with the consequences of colonialism- of your own acts- should be something your character would have to deal with at some point in this Era.

              At least, that's what I think that Wyrd was trying to say. Colonialism is a very bad thing, but we can't force upon the people of the past ideals which weren't theirs. We may not be perfect, but we are better than who we were, and the only thing we can do is to improve. That is the horror of the Age of Discovery- that acts has consequences, and that while you think of yourself as a descent human being, you are doing some bad, bad things simply because you can't recognize they are bad. You have to face your consequences and look in the mirror, even if you don't like what you'll see in there.


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              • #37
                Exactly what LostLight is writing! Can I use direct quotes of your's post in rewriting Theme section? Or maybe you could write it better than me here, with adding only my ideas from Mage and Beast side? I think that my English language skill maybe too low to make justice of the Theme, without adding some problematic phrases.


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                • #38
                  Originally posted by wyrdhamster View Post
                  Exactly what LostLight is writing! Can I use direct quotes of your's post in rewriting Theme section? Or maybe you could write it better than me here, with adding only my ideas from Mage and Beast side? I think that my English language skill maybe too low to make justice of the Theme, without adding some problematic phrases.
                  you can use/edit my post for the use of the Theme, of course.


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                  • #39
                    Originally posted by wyrdhamster View Post
                    To the people of that Era - no, it was not offensive.
                    It doesn't matter in this context you are addressing a modern audience. You've stated that colonialism is ambiguous, because on the one hand the native population get access to new technology, and on the other their cultures will die out and be assimilated.

                    My point is, that's firstly not exactly true, but more importantly that's not the major issue that people at the time would have dealt with. The major issues are the genocide, the slavery and the racism. Cultural imperialism is way down the list of problems that people have to deal with, and you haven't mentioned the important ones.

                    Also, yes, it was offensive. Lots of people complained about the poor treatment of indigenous populations. You can't save someones soul if a conquistador has just beheaded them.

                    However, if you are playing the Age of Discovery, you are likely to take the part of the colonialist instead of the occupied citizen.
                    I get your point, but why? I mean aside from anything else it introduces some hard divisions between colonists and colonised, which aren't really correct.


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                    • #40
                      Originally posted by Michael View Post

                      I get your point, but why? I mean aside from anything else it introduces some hard divisions between colonists and colonised, which aren't really correct.
                      because from the eyes of the occupied people, it is not the "Age of Discovery", as from their point of view, they weren't "discovered". The concept of "discovering the world" comes from European eyes, so the natural direction one would take in this Era is playing it from the colonialist's perception. I'm not saying that you should ignore the colonized population (on the contrary!) or that you shouldn't play them- but when the theme of the Era is "discoveries", it is easier to think about it from the point of the explorer, not the explored.


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                      • #41
                        Revisioned Theme & Mood sections, based on Lord LostLight post.

                        Originally posted by wyrdhamster View Post
                        Theme: Colonialism
                        Conquest of Paradise is Dark Era about Colonialism – and colonialism is the policy of a nation seeking to extend or retain its authority over other people or territories. It’s involves unequal relationships between the colonial power and the colony and often between the colonists and the indigenous peoples. Through modern eyes, colonialism is not considered to be a positive thing. Many people were murdered, raped or harmed in ways we can't imagined in the name of it. However, through the eyes of the colonialists, they were doing good things, like "bringing civilization to the barbarians" or “saving souls of those that did not see the light of Lord”. The Age of Exploration is, without doubt, a colonialist Era. However, if you are playing in it, you are likely to take the part of the colonialist instead of the occupied citizen. Players are going to deal with the consequences of being a colonialist and taking over another person's homeland in the name of progress and state. Some of them may even start the game as their characters (not the players) think that colonialism is good way of doing things - but when they stumble upon the deeds done in the name of progress, things may start to change inside of them - some may find the strength to challenge the world they live in. Others may break. At any case, dealing with the consequences of colonialism - of your own acts - should be something your character would have to deal with at some point in this Era.

                        From our perspective colonialism is a very bad thing, but we can't force upon the people of the past ideals which weren't theirs. We may not be perfect, but we are better than who we were, and the only thing we can do is to improve. That is the horror of the Age of Exploration - that acts has consequences, and that while you think of yourself as a descent human being, you are doing some dark things to other people simply because you can't recognize they are bad from your point of view. You have to face your consequences and look in the mirror, even if you don't like what you'll see in there.

                        But it’s not limited only to humans - just like Spain and Portugal want’s to convert Indians to Catholicism, Diamond Orders want to spread as far as they can, as from the times of Alexanders the Great and Roman Empire they stayed in mostly the same territory of Europe and East. Even if Orders really want to build ‘better tomorrow for everyone’ – they doing this with the same mistakes as mortals colonial powers, often showing darker sides of mage culture contacts.

                        Beasts, on the other hand, are those people uncovering or embracing their ethnic legacy. By becoming monsters from their forefathers myths and legends, they sustaining traditions of their people, literally becoming their stories – and nightmares. And when there is pressure from invaders on their groups to leave, they move – often to the place where they become outsiders invading another land. Bing monster means that you are monster no matter where you are.

                        Mood: Race to Conquer the World
                        In this Era, Portugal and Spain are literally racing to take as much of the world for themselves and in the name of the Lord. Even if expeditions takes years to finalize – and wars to win – everyone knows that those first on the finishing line are those dealing the cards. Every conquistador, every navigator, every missionary and even every diplomat knows and feels it in his bones. ‘We must be first!’ is subconscious motto every expedition is reciting in their minds. They telling stories only about winners, in the end.


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                        • #42
                          Originally posted by LostLight View Post
                          because from the eyes of the occupied people, it is not the "Age of Discovery", as from their point of view, they weren't "discovered". The concept of "discovering the world" comes from European eyes, so the natural direction one would take in this Era is playing it from the colonialist's perception. I'm not saying that you should ignore the colonized population (on the contrary!) or that you shouldn't play them- but when the theme of the Era is "discoveries", it is easier to think about it from the point of the explorer, not the explored.
                          I cannot disagree more. The "Age of Discovery" is neither the point of view of settlers or of indigenous people. It is the viewpoint of modern people. The Age of Discovery does not actually exist. It is a construct that we have made to look back at our history. We make a choice of which people that construct applies to. If we choose only feature European Colonists, that is our choice. It is a choice to erase the voices of communities that have had their land stolen and have been made into second class citizens. It repeats the injustices of colonialize again and again.

                          The new Theme section is much better in expressing the pain and suffering that one people inflicted upon another... but I agree with Michael. There is zero reason that you can't play as an indigenous PC as opposed to a settler. In fact, trying to say that you should just be playing as settlers both stifles the options for telling the story and repeats the historical grievances I've mentioned above. I see no reason for it and nothing good coming out of it.
                          Last edited by Second Chances; 08-09-2017, 11:25 PM.


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                          • #43
                            Originally posted by Second Chances View Post
                            I cannot disagree more. The "Age of Discovery" is neither the point of view of settlers or of indigenous people. It is the viewpoint of modern people. The Age of Discovery does not actually exist. It is a construct that we have made to look back at our history. We make a choice of which people that construct applies to. If we choose only feature European Colonists, that is our choice. It is a choice to erase the voices of communities that have had their land stolen and have been made into second class citizens. It repeats the injustices of colonialize again and again.
                            It's historical RPG - 'repeating history' is it's point. Analyzing consequences of it from actions of PCs is there to give moral lesson also why we have modern society as it is and to not repeat those mistakes from past n reality.

                            Originally posted by Second Chances View Post
                            The new Theme section is much better in expressing the pain and suffering that one people inflicted upon another... but I agree with Michael. There is zero reason that you can't play as an indigenous PC as opposed to a settler. In fact, trying to say that you should just be playing as settlers both stifles the options for telling the story and repeats the historical grievances I've mentioned above. I see no reason for it and nothing good coming out of it.
                            Theme is Big Question the group answers on. No one can tell you to not play indigenous people - and I would even advise to try. Only you will need to understand into what you are going there.

                            But saying the colonists are 'bad people' and doing 'only evil' is not fair - they saw they were doing good, God's work. It's like saying that modern Christian Churchs are 'ultimately evil' because many not recognizing homosexual marriages. For some people it will be this surely ( i think they all should for example ) - for others Churches build or run homeless shelters, help disabled and give faith for those that need this. Those are not bad things - I would argue they are very good things to do.

                            Colonialist were a bit the same in XVI century - yes, many of them were doing it for gold, but they also strongly believe they help indigenous people. That they giving true God to worship. From our perspective it is forcing ones views on another - but they really thought it was good and they saving native people. It's most obvious example of different culture clash.

                            Personal anecdote: I'm raised in Catholic family in Poland. I'm bisexual agnostic. I may thinking that my parents was forcing too much their faith on me, that limited my religious studies or sexual exploration - but in their eyes, they were doing what good the Mother Church has tough them in it's doctrine. And, well, there are much worse organisations than Catholic Church in the world. I may argue that Roman Church is not best organisation there is - but to my parents it is force of good, doing good things to humans, being faith of their fathers. They just not thought out one of their sons can be 'gay' and repressed by their sticking with older faith of their parents...

                            In your's eyes - moving analogy to Colonialism - my parents are simply evil people. After 30 years of my life I see them just misguided and maybe limited in perspective - but not 'ultimately bad'. Condemn sin not man. And with good will of hell is paved...
                            Last edited by wyrdhamster; 08-10-2017, 01:26 AM.


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                            • #44
                              Wyrd, don't put words in my mouth. I have said zero things about you or your family and don't appreciate you assuming the worst of my opinion about them. I'm out of here.
                              Last edited by Second Chances; 08-10-2017, 01:36 AM.


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                              • #45
                                I was about to explain my point earlier, as the last thing I want to do is hurting someone with my writing, but things seem to go down the hill from here (something which I've tried to stop), so I'm going to step back for now..


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