The only reason there’s a train at all in this world, is because I wanted this fight-on-a-train scene. I’m not saying this as a joke, it’s literally the reason. Anything that exists within a fictional setting, especially one that is a truly fantastical world, should be justified by at least one of these, while also not negating any of the others: it’s setting up something that’s cool/fun; it helps with verisimilitude and thus with the suspension of disbelief; or it’s essential to the plot.

This train existed since the very earliest days of this setting, when we were playing an early version of it with the BESM system (and Crystals allowed you to ‘unlock a soul power’; don’t ask). I wanted the journey from Fjordstad to Maesia to feel essentially different from the journey from Bogovia to Fjordstad, but to still be a single route, and also, to show Fjordstad’s engineering spirit. So a train! And therefore a fight on a train (and something more, which you will see later).

These days, I no longer need the first two things – the journey is already essentially different (because of plot and visuals), and the engineering spirit was already shown. And so, what was before a consequence of reasoning, is now the main reason itself. And also for that something more, which you will see later.

And also I wanted the train there for the RPG book, but that’s a whole other set of reasons, so let’s not go there right now.

For the foreseeable future, we give our patrons the opportunity to present our players with a weekly question, building on Rotem’s recent desire to start using this tool.

Last week, LegacyHero asked: “What’s the favorite piece of lore/culture you created for your character’s people?

Guy: I enjoyed creating all of the small, everyday items in Rhyr. I gave Nadav a list of seven spring-loaded things, and he mentioned them when it was relevant, and it really made me feel like I’m in a city of people who place an emphasis on design above all things.

Rotem: I’m very happy with the teaching dolls. It’s something I created based on real-world Hopi katsina figures, because I base most of my clan’s trappings on Hopi culture. These dolls are created by the children of the clan as a teaching exercise, to show them how the resources around are used in everyday work: The abdomen is made of the pit of an avocado, which is a main source of substance for us; the legs are made of rabbit fur, because that’s important in our clothing, etc. etc..

[emails again after four days] Ok I wasn’t happy with this so I reworked everything I had planned for Maseia, I hope it’s okay! [28 pages attached] Nadav feel free to use whatever you think works best, of course!

Lily: I really liked the baba, I think it gives a rustic feel to Bogovia, and it also gives a unique and powerful place for women in a society that’s headed by a patriarchal church. But there’s this thing with pigeons that I hope we’ll get to see in play one day…

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