Narnia True20

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Narnia True20

Postby damiller » Thu Dec 08, 2005 2:43 pm

Well I finally have my Narnia True 20 supplement finished.

I don't know why I picked True 20, because I love Castles and Crusades better, but I will get a CnC version of this done too.

Feedback would be appreciated.

http://www.geocities.com/dist42/narnia/True20Narnia.pdf

d :D
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Postby Zulgyan » Thu Dec 08, 2005 3:59 pm

:!: link not working :!:
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Postby The Shadow » Thu Dec 08, 2005 7:57 pm

Can't get to it... and this is very frustrating, as I am a Narnia FREAK! :)

I can't believe it never occurred to me to use True20 for that setting.
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Postby Nikchick » Thu Dec 08, 2005 8:04 pm

The Shadow wrote:Can't get to it... and this is very frustrating, as I am a Narnia FREAK! :)

I can't believe it never occurred to me to use True20 for that setting.


Hmmm, I tried it in Firefox and it worked fine for me. Weird.
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Postby The Shadow » Thu Dec 08, 2005 10:17 pm

OK, now I've got it. I like! But I have some questions.

I was a little surprised at first that children are the only PC's. I could see a Narnia campaign that involved Talking Beasts and other Narnians. But I have to admit, to be true to the stories, you have to have Sons of Adam and Daughters of Eve around.

The Horse and His Boy of course has two children in it that are native. One could argue that Bree and Hwin are NPC's, I guess, but Bree has more of a PCish feel to me. And one could definitely make a case for Tirian in The Last Battle being a PC.

One of the interesting thing about Narnia is that the air there seems to make Earthly children nearly as good as adults at many things, or even better. (Edmund whupping Trumpkin, for example, and Peter whupping Miraz.) So I'm not entirely sure about the stat rules. (Maybe it's simply a matter of being higher level?)

Steadfastness is absolutely fascinating. However, I have some questions about it.

First, why on earth would anyone want to follow their Vice? (Other than, as you mention, to possibly try to fulfill their Joy.) There should be, I feel, some insidious attraction to it. Though to be really true to the stories, everyone should manage to win their way back in the end. Perhaps when a really dramatic point comes (likely the intervention of Aslan), several points could be regained.

Also, you say that you take a Virtue "and the corresponding Vice". This makes it sound like if you pick Faith, you automatically have Faithless, which doesn't make any sense. I assume the Virtue and Vice should really be independent of each other. But picking the Seven Virtues was brilliant! Just brilliant! You might want to add Humility (and Pride), though.

You could also consider the Seven Deadly Sins. Though I'd leave Lust off the list - that's just sick for children. Add Despair in its place, perhaps. And keep Cowardice. The nice thing about the Deadlies is that they have character, so to speak. You can see how to work them in. Things like Faithless are a little harder, because they're negative.

Another possible Background might be Elder: The responsible one. Peter seems to me to fit this Background, and not really any of the others. I'm not sure about the stat adjustments and other data for it, it just seems to me to exist. "Nerd" seems excessively harsh as a name, btw. Maybe "Thinker", as a counterpart to "Dreamer".

The list of Joys doesn't seem right. Not for kids, and not for Narnia. I'll think about it some more, and try to articulate what I'm feeling about them. Mainly, I run into trouble trying to assign them to existing characters. I think, "So what's Edmund's Joy?" and nothing on the list seems to work. And that goes generally.

...Perhaps the problem is that they feel "completed". Passing on knowledge? I'd think "Learning" would be more appropriate. How many kids care about Wealth? Justice matches a virtue. Not many kids have anything to Atone for. And so on. (Susan's Joy seems to be "Growing Up", btw.)

Centaurs most assuredly do not have negative Intelligence. On the other hand, you seem a bit too generous to fauns. (I don't think Satyrs are necessarily evil.)

While Dryads seem to be always female, and I'd guess the same of the Hamadryads, there are male Silvans. In fact, oaks seem to always be male. You might lump them into "Awakened Trees".

There's no text for Minotaur.

Talking Beasts are generally larger than their dumb kin. Heck, Reepicheep comes up to a child's waist! Glimfeather can carry a child on his back. None should be smaller than Small. The really big ones (elephants, mostly) are smaller, though.

Numinousness saves are very interesting. I'm going to have to think it over in some detail.

P.S. Cauldron Pool bubbles because the Great Waterfall falls into it. Also, it's "Anvard" and "moat".
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Postby The Shadow » Thu Dec 08, 2005 10:21 pm

The "canonical" kids seem to me to have these Backgrounds, Virtues, and Vices:

Peter: Elder. Virtue: Courage. Vice: Hard to say, but maybe Foolishness. If you include the Seven Deadlies, maybe Wrath (he gets cross a fair bit) or Pride (won't change his plans readily).

Susan: Athlete. Virtue: She's the practical one, so I'd say "Prudence", but you only have "Wisdom" here, and that doesn't seem to fit for her. Honestly, Susan doesn't have many positive moments in the Chronicles. Her Vice is definitely Foolishness.

Edmund: Probably Nerd. Virtue: Justice. Vice: Intemperance. (Turkish Delight.)

Lucy: Dreamer, of course. Virtue: Faith Vice: Not sure... The opposite of Susan, she's rarely shown in a negative light. Given her temptation with Coriakin's book, I'd say Envy, but that's not on the list.

Shasta: Loner, probably. Virtue: Hmm. Hope. He never gives up. He's also pretty brave. Vice: Mainly, that he was never properly brought up, so doesn't understand good, free people. He's willing to lie and steal. Perhaps Injustice.

Aravis: Athlete. Virtue: Not sure... Vice: Injustice. But a very different kind than Shasta's. I'd rather say Pride. (Like I said, I really think the Seven Deadlies work better than the mere opposites of the Virtues.)

Eustace: Hard to say between Bully, Nerd, and Tinkerer. :) I'm going to say Tinkerer. I could see Edmund as a scientist; I can see Eustace as an engineer. Virtue: Wisdom, bizarrely enough. Vice: Hate. You could make a case for Cowardice, but I think his temper problem is the stronger. Besides, he gets over the cowardice.

Jill: Not sure, but maybe Loner. Virtue: Not sure, but maybe Charity. Vice: Intemperance.

Digory: Nerd. He's the Professor, for crying out loud! :) Virtue: Wisdom. Vice: Hopeless.

Polly: Tinkerer. Virtue: Charity. She's a very good friend with a heart of gold. Vice: Not sure.

EDIT: As great an idea as using real Virtues and Vices is, I do wonder. I keep wanting to say that Polly's Vice is "Headstrong", but that's not really a vice - unless you call it Pride or Foolishness. (I do think Foolishness should remain as a vice in any event. It sums a lot of things up - though, true, all children have it to some extent.)
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Postby The Shadow » Thu Dec 08, 2005 10:35 pm

One more thing, sorry.

How would you handle levelling? It's easier to phrase it as an example: How many levels do you think the Pevensies gained in TLtWatW? I don't think a 2nd level Child could've defeated Trumpkin or Miraz, but their years as Kings and Queens in Narnia admittedly confuses everything.

Perhaps a more neutral example would be, how many levels do you think Eustace and Jill gained in The Silver Chair? Golly, I never thought I'd be trying to divide up books into game sessions! :) Is each book an adventure? (Though definitely a multi-session adventure.) Or a whole campaign?

Finally, would someone be willing to run this? I MUST play in it! Aaronil, I'm looking at you. :) Damiller, I'd definitely try it with you too.

P.S. What does it mean on page 2 when it says that characters with adept levels only ever use those levels when figuring power bonuses? There's no attack or save bonus from it, or what?
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Postby FickleGM » Fri Dec 09, 2005 4:56 am

The Shadow wrote:P.S. What does it mean on page 2 when it says that characters with adept levels only ever use those levels when figuring power bonuses? There's no attack or save bonus from it, or what?


I read that as meaning - "When figuring power bonuses, only use adept levels".

The way it's written suggests the adept levels are limited, when I believe that it is the powers that are supposed to be limited (to using only adept levels).
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Postby timemrick » Fri Dec 09, 2005 7:12 am

I get the following:
Sorry, this site is temporarily unavailable!
The web site you are trying to access has exceeded its allocated data transfer. [...] Access to this site will be restored within an hour. Please try again later.

I know exactly what's happening: it's been very popular in a very brief window, so Geocities has cut off access for a while. It happens to my site occasionally. The perils of limited free hosting.

I started notes for a Narnia LARP once upon a time, so I'm curious to see your treatment. I'll take a look at it when I can get in.
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Postby Dragonspawn » Fri Dec 09, 2005 11:33 am

I like the backgrounds you provided for children, it looks like they were inspired by "Grimm" (I think it's by Fantasy Flight Games?)... if so, I was wondering why you left the "Outcast" background out.
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Postby damiller » Fri Dec 09, 2005 2:47 pm

Oh good, I am glad that it is able to be downloaded, I tried the link myself (when I posted and well it didn't work). I was afraid I was going to have to upgrade my service with geocities just to be able to make downloading Narnia possible.



Dragonspawn - Grimm did inspire me, but while I used to have a physical copy, and don't anymore, I couldn't remember all the classes. In my Castles and Crusades version I have the Weird Kid class.

FickleGM- correct if you allow supernatural powers at all in your game, once your children are taking adult roles, they only use their adept levels to figure their skill in the power. (isn't that what you said?)

Ill post later, when I am not having to go to work!!!! :(

(DId get to see the movie tho!!! WOW!!)
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Postby The Shadow » Fri Dec 09, 2005 2:53 pm

FickleGM wrote:I read that as meaning - "When figuring power bonuses, only use adept levels".

The way it's written suggests the adept levels are limited, when I believe that it is the powers that are supposed to be limited (to using only adept levels).


So in other words, powers are "Adept Level" rather than "Adept Level + 3"? And I guess there's no Wild Talents?

Outcast also definitely works as a Background for a Child. Though most outcasts are either Nerds or Loners, I think.
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Postby damiller » Sat Dec 10, 2005 9:46 am

Vice and Virtue
I was looking for a way to mechanically enforce those concepts. Because they are at the heart of Narnia, for it was built on a very specific set of laws. Mechanically it may be a bit clunky, but I am trying to enforce a specific set of ideas for playing in Narnia. Now that I think about it I would probably not have players choose a Virtue and its associated Vice. But let them pick as would best fit their conception of their character. Nonetheless, while conviction might be great, it didn’t really work for the concepts I wanted to enforce.

For example, when I looked at the rules for gaining Conviction, I was not really satisfied. In True 20 conviction can be regained for following either nature. I didn’t like that. It didn’t represent Narnia to me. This is because Narnia is not about personal convictions of right and wrong. By this I mean the modern concept of right and wrong being a personal or culture idea, not the more ancient concept (and the one which Narnia is built upon) that the world itself is built on immutable laws that a person either denies or affirms. Narnia is about upholding the laws of its universe, and you either get in line with those or you’re the bad guy.

Steadfastness, as opposed to conviction, puts the emphasis of right and wrong on something other than the individual person. It is great to have conviction. The White Witch had conviction, but in Narnia, that is not as important as steadfastly upholding the laws of the Universe. I see it as a kind of moral hierarchy, conviction is great, but it is not the pinnacle, steadfastness is closer to that top. But even steadfastness is not the top. At the very top (most likely, I don’t know I can’t see that far) of that moral hierarchy are those immutable laws making steadfastness and conviction so important.

In a second way I didn’t like the idea of rewarding vice. There is no reward to vice. Not in Narnia. In Narnia, unlike our world, good is rewarded “immediately”, there is no bye and bye pie in the sky. (Of course on the flip side it may also be said that evil also gets its reward immediately) The good guys do not finish last in Narnia, the bad guys do. There is no disconnect between being steadfast, true and reward. That disconnect comes from being wavering and untrue. In Narnia, those that choose to be untrue have the harder time, not the other way around.

But that goes back to my fundamental belief about Myth, which Narnia is. To me Myth reveals the reality of the Universe. And that reality is: Wavering and Untruth cause a disconnect, separate people from others, and leave them at the mercy of their enemies. At this present time, we don’t see that. How many times have we seen the fact of the proverb “nice guys finish last”. But the fact does not prove it is reality. To me, myth is about unveiling the Real, and giving us, mere mortals, a chance to see behind the scenes so to speak and giving us the strength to fight on knowing that this present time is not the reality of the universe. But then again, I am, unabashedly a Christian.

Therefore in summary, mechanically, for me, in Narnia, it SHOULD be harder to be evil, to be untrue, there should be no phat lewt for going evil. It should be a pain in the ass to be a bad guy in Narnia, because that is how Narnia works. It is harder for those who want to be untrue and mean. Rewards should be heaped, and indeed are, upon those who are true, steadfast, AND those who return to those virtues.

In fact it warms my heart (and yes I even get a little teary) every time I think of King Edmund’s title. He is called the Just, and he was anything but that when the Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe started. And yet, through all of that, through the Recovery, Aslan gave him the title of Edmund the Just. In Narnia, it should be hard to be alone; it should be hard to be evil, because the Good is so very Real.
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Postby The Shadow » Sun Dec 11, 2005 1:00 pm

Damiller, I largely agree with everything you just said. And yet, the children in Narnia *do* screw up.

Edmund betrays his siblings. (He's always been my favorite character, btw - and yes, I love his title of "the Just" too. He earned it!) Jill fails to repeat the Signs and both her and Eustace fall for the creature comforts offered at Harfang. Digory hurts Polly to ring the bell in Charn. *Everybody* falls under the curse of Deathwater. And so on.

It'd make for boring stories if the children always did everything right. And maybe the sort of people who would want to play in Narnia are also the type to introduce that kind of thing to make the story dramatic. But maybe not.

Remember that Conviction isn't a character thing. It's a player thing. Steve in M&M 2e quite bluntly encourages using Hero Points as a form of bribery for the players. :)

And evil in Narnia, while it never pays in the end, IS alluring. If it wasn't alluring it wouldn't be a real threat.

P.S. Just saw the movie yesterday, btw. It was good, but not nearly as good as it could've been. It's too strong to say I was disappointed, but it wasn't what I was hoping for. Still, I feel I got the price of my ticket out of it.
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Postby timemrick » Sun Dec 11, 2005 9:50 pm

(It was still balking at letting me in directly, but I was able to download it by going to the "narnia" folder instead. Stupid Geocities...)

I'm afraid I don't have enough free time this month to offer a real critique, but there are some pretty cool ideas in there. I hope your game goes well!
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Postby Dragonspawn » Sat Dec 31, 2005 7:03 pm

Anyone interested in running a narnia campaign should check out this book:

Beyond the Wardrobe: The Official Guide to Narnia (Paperback)
by E. J. Kirk

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0060765534/qid=1136084342/sr=8-1/ref=pd_bbs_1/002-2924781-0955225?n=507846&s=books&v=glance
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Postby timemrick » Sun Jan 01, 2006 11:29 am

Companion to Narnia, by Paul F. Ford, is another excellent reference, and covers the entire series of seven books, not just the first one. I own the original Companion (not the revised edition currently available), and made heavy use of it when I was attempting to plot out a Narnia LARP. (That project, however, has been shelved indefinitely.)

[Edited to fix link]
Last edited by timemrick on Tue Jan 03, 2006 8:00 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby aaronil » Mon Jan 02, 2006 10:41 am

You might steal one of the uses for Conviction from my setting, which would fit Narnia well:

Activate Virtue: You may spend a Conviction point to activate your virtue gaining either of these benefits:
Acknowledged Virtue: A subject (or everyone listening to the hero) immediately recognizes one virtue that the hero possesses. For example, an Honest hero whose testimony is questioned could convince everyone that she is telling the truth.
Strength of Virtue: The hero resists an effect compelling her to act in opposition to one of her virtues. For example, an Honest hero could resist an adept’s Dominate attempt to make her lie about something.
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