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The Great White North - Snowpiercer/Grand Star

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  • The Great White North - Snowpiercer/Grand Star

    After binge watching Snowpiercer, again, and then Grand Star, again, I have to wonder .. let's imagine..

    The world is covered in snow and ice. Something has blotted out the sun and made it so cold that exposure to the air for more than 5mins can lead to extreme frostbite and probably limb loss.
    The world is now broken into isolated train city-station hubs, the rail lines being the only thing that still connects the various places of the world together.
    Mortals – mankind adapts. Clustered in large city-stations, mankind lives on, surviving the cold, holding onto the hope that the clouds will clear and sun will once more shine upon the earth. Heated with geo-thermal plants, the city-stations range from being home to a few hundred to massive ones sitting in the middle of old pre-freeze cities that house thousands. These city-stations provide, heat, light, hydroponics, work, entertainment and housing for their citizens and are micro nations unto themselves. Most are ruled by a council, democratically trying to keep their station and people alive, others are theocracies or dictatorships, the will of one person and his army of soldiers or clerics keeping everyone in line.

    There are isolated unconnected settlements here and there. Comprised of maybe a dozen or so people, these small hunter/gatherer groups icefish and hunt the animals that have adapted to the cold.

    Outside the stations it barely gets above -20c each day and at night it plunges to -40 to -50 with ease. Cod fronts and polar vortexes roll through dropping it even further at times. Some animals have adapted to the cold. Bears, moose, rodents and other hairy animals have grown extra layers of fat and hair to deal with the cold and have proliferated. Birds are gone, as are insects, expect in hot houses and zoos in the city-stations. Fish have survived in droves, and so even some of the more resilient mammals, such as whales. The oceans, while cold and frozen over on the top, have deep thermals where aquatic life swims. Rare patches of open water on the ocean are surfacing grounds for whales, and fiercely protected by them.

    So.. how do the supernaturals fit in I wonder.

    I've ideas I am working on .. wonder what others might think.

  • #2
    My first thought: vampires are screwed. The masquerade might still be possible in the largest stations, but the population would have to be small. In a smaller settlement, a single vampire or a small coterie would basically have to take over semi-openly to be able to feed. I'm not sure the covenants as we know them would survive, but to the extent the Ordo Dracul is a thing, any Coils that reduce the burden on the herd (ie letting older vampires survive on animal blood, or the one from Contagion Chronicle that lets them eat ghosts) would be extreme valuable knowledge.

    Beasts would be a similar though slightly less dire situation, depending on their Hunger and how they feed it. On the plus side, the population collapse would reduce the clutter in the Dream, so Heroes might be more like Oracles of the past, with fewer axe-crazy murder hobos. Fear of the world outside the stations would produce a lot of dark, icy Lairs.

    Poor Prometheans - Disquiet in a small settlement or on a train that goes days between stations would be brutal, and a Firestorm in an enclosed environment would be a nightmare. A settlement that relies on nuclear power instead of geothermal might be the ideal place for a Zeka to hang out.

    How fast did the freeze come on? The scale of mass death could've created a ton of Sin-Eaters and Avernian Gates, and radically reshaped the Underworld, with a huge flood of ghosts and Castoffs that slowed to a trickle as the population of the settlements stabilized. There may be settlements where ghosts outnumber the living, and krewes operate fairly openly, helping both the dead and the living process the trauma and loss.


    • #3
      Beasts would love it. It would be a return to the past for them. They can easily become immune to the cold (remember, the immunity from the lair tilts extends to similar natural enviromental conditions), and people have a lot of reasons to be scared. They would mostly lurk at the edges of civilization, with some of them, especially the Inguma, travelling from town to town, the eternal Strangers. Werewolves would also fit in quite nicely, wolves are adaptable creatures and with the reduced human activity the Shadow would be a lot calmer. Changeling would be even more paranoid, since it is harder to hide in a small community. Maybe some courts could become travelling, using the train system to move from place to place to stay hidden. Mummies would have a lot of trouble keeping their cults alive and searching for their relics in the untamed and hostile wilderness. Vampires would be deeeply screwed, their whole society would collapse and they would become basically indistinguishable from a particular type of Beast. Prometheans, poor things, would be forced to perpetually travel from town to town, jumping from train to train in the hope of avoiding disquiet.


      • #4
        Originally posted by ShepardCommander View Post
        Beasts would love it. It would be a return to the past for them. They can easily become immune to the cold (remember, the immunity from the lair tilts extends to similar natural enviromental conditions), and people have a lot of reasons to be scared. They would mostly lurk at the edges of civilization, with some of them, especially the Inguma, travelling from town to town, the eternal Strangers.
        Oooh I didn't think about that aspect of it. What a Legend: "Sometimes when the wind is calm, you can year something knocking on the walls of the station from the outside, begging to be let in..."


        • #5
          Vampires could attempt to control some stations from the shadows. I could see the werewolves adapted to the cold world. Mages would be hard press to keep the magic hidden in stations, but if they had somewhere outside, hidden and heated by magic they would be ok. Hunters .. they could be legends of the traveling strangers, slashers could be nasty. Yeah Prometheans would be fucked.. though .. would not the moving enviroment of a train count as moving? thus they are travelling and not in the same place for an extended time? I honestly don't know about sin-eaters, or how the demons would work. Maybe the great freeze is the God Machines doing and the demons are seeking to get the sun back. Mummies .. hmmm.. Deviants would work.


          • #6
            For Promethean, converting a train wagon in a Hovel or a Sanctuary Athanor would be mandatory.
            Also, Pandorans would be a major risk.
            It comes to my mind a scene with a Generative act in a station gone wrong leading to a The Thing intro scenario 😁


            • #7
              To a Demon trapped on earth, the Apocalypse has come. War is here. Already, both sides have suffered. Vast swaths of God's design are offline, now. The Integrators and more than a few Inquisitors say that some of the Infrastructure required for not only human life but the climate was destroyed, perhaps by overzealous Saboteurs, perhaps as God's autoimmune response kicking into overdrive or reverting to more simplistic programming. Either way, Heaven and Hell practically exist. While humans can't see it, some entire Stations, Trains, Ruins, and Wastelands are entirely in the hands of demons or angels. Most are still contested territory, and the cold war gets hotter every day. Demons have to balance the freedom and mobility of living on a train with the stability and anonymity of living in a station, or else risk the Wastes or Ruins and a much, oddly, "hotter" warzone.

              Mummies have always existed, and they will always exist. When one wakes up, it will change things forever, and never is that more evident than NOW. One was found in a vault deep beneath a Station. Or so the survivors say, as it destroyed the station in anger and confusion, only to wander off. Another woke with memories of the past, of the days before all of this. She wants to REMEMBER what happened to her and to humanity, to document the words and memories of anyone closest to the survivors (including their ghosts, descendents, and if lucky, themselves personally). Yet another wakes up with memories of the future, of a ruin even worse than this one, when the trains and stations have slowly falling apart. Can he prevent this future, or at least keep one or two trains and stations alive? Another awakens in a ruin, his remains disturbed by scaveñgers or scientists. He almost kills them all,but instead seems curious. As he remembers the end of his own empire, and fe3ls it resonates with the end of all empires into a frozen Dust.. what does he do, then? Change the world back to how it was? Make a new one? Laugh at his Judges and find a way to be free? If only it were so simple. Immortals, Lifeless, Amkhata, the Judges... None of it went away. Sekhem is even rarer, and the lost treasures even harder to find. But you'll survive. You always do.

              The Changelings, perhaps, exist in the strangest of worlds. They tell stories of the day the Great Winter fell...for a while, at least, some Courts grew vastly powerful as their energies grew and the Wyrd shifted. And then the Courts died. Seasons never changed. Day and night stopped meaning anything. Even directions, even inside of the Stations and the Wasteland became just Forward and Back. The Courts before, and their Bulwarks and bargains, fell. Not many survive from the time before, but a some few centuries old elders exist out there who can tell you a tale about it. But other tales exist, too. Of Trains and Stations creating a new Court, just without the cycles and bargains quite right. Or of the fact that might Avalon still stands, still protected and full, with courts and seasons and mortals living alongside Changelings in harmony. Or of Changelings who use the Hedge to leave their train or station to never come back... Or come back with riches and news from far away stations. Or of how the Gentry used to be much more dàngerous and active, but because humanity sequesters itself in trains and stations, the Gentry have far less power in those places,but so much more in the wilds outside


              • #8
                Sorry for the double post, but this idea seemed to need a bit more explanation. And that's.. Mages, evolving into what I will unironically call the Septagram.

                Let's face it, if the Fallen World is suddenly a frozen wasteland... Someone must've broken the Pax. Such a huge shift would've meant most of the gods, invisible Masters, and the like SHOULDVE stopped it from happening. Even over the slow process of Imperium and Archmages society, such things slowly evolve, worked in as pork fat or addendums to other retcons nobody noticed. But an Apocalypse?

                Mage society currently exists in the Septagram. Rather like the Sin Eaters, the Septagram is a bit more.. us versus them, but a very oddly inclusive us. It includes the Pentacles, the Seers, and... The Nephandi.

                Who could've predicted an apocalypse? Who could've predicted that the Seers of the Throne would divide in two?

                As the global structure of mage society fell apart, as time master panicked and raced backwards and forwards to prevent the emergency, a trend began to emerge. The zero point of the apocalypse caused ripples backwards and forwards, and suddenly, Pentacle mages began to find themselves allied with Seers of the Throne who desperately wanted to keep reality,or at least the Lie,from falling apart. Much as how Demons realized that some Infrastructure prevents humanity's extinction, so do the Exarchs enforce some of those act not out of selfishness, but to prevent the world from falling apart. Or at least the Seers do

                Thus, to protect Reality itself, or at least the Lie holding it together, the Pentacle became the Septagram. The Nephandi are the newest Order to join, and the others do not trust them. When the End began, many worshippers of the Abyss and Exarchs began to realize that they actually enjoyed existing and living. Hedonistic, hubristic, and self absorbed, these mages use forbidden powers of the Abyss or the Lie to continue to enjoy the world, to exist, to indulge. But they've realized that, the world is already bad off and can get even worse. In an apocalyptic setting,they've realized how much they'd lose if they continued being moustache twirling villains,and instead focus on using the contaminated parts of reality to keep reality afloat.

                Their opposite, the major branch of the Seers of the Throne, are still very different from the Free Council and Nephandi. They truly BELIEVE in the Lie and the God Machine. They haven't quite given up the fee benefits and resources granted to the winning side of the bureaucracy of the supernal, bit they have realized that order and reality must be maintained even at the cost of their own lives. While the Nephandi want to keep reality around so they can enjoy it selfishly, the new Seers focus on keeping reality as a functional state, serving the God Machine and Exarchs to keep what's left of humanity from extinction. They are far more pragmatic, which means they often find their goals overlap with the Pentacle. But even they cannot deny the fervor of the Nephandi. As such, the Mages have.. United, to steer the train forward and to make sure it doesn't crash or go off the rails. The station they're heading for is anyone's guess, but they can't get there alone. And plus, outside the Septagram, many others would take them down. The true scelesti. The mad. The nameless who refused even the Septagram. Banishers supernals. And most of all, hubris. With so few people left alive, any one mage can move a nation.