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One Thousand and One Nights and One Night

a role-playing game campaign design ’zine Vol.: 2, Issue: 29, May 1, 2008
Ice, Null and Judges Null Set: Fantasy Setting #1
This issue, I dove into the past to
show you two things I wrote six
years ago. I’ve incorporated some
of the ideas in previous settings,
including my Savage Realms! Back in 2002, Wizards of the Coast had the
setting from Issue #16. Also, I’ve Fantasy Setting Search contest. Thousands
learned that Robert Bledsaw, upon thousands of gamers sent in their ideas,
founder of Judges Guild, passed all on a one―page sheet, and waited patiently
away April 20th. Judges Guild was to see who would win. Eberron (WotC) by Keith
a great influence on my early Baker was chosen. I, myself, wrote three
gaming. Our deep condolences to settings. Recently, I dusted off the old computer
his family and friends. and found what I wrote. Here’s the first one
that I did, word for word, warts and all.
Morrow Project Ice World Game
I ran a brief (2―3 session) Core Ethos Sentence
Morrow Project (Timeline) In the dark fantasy setting of Null, heroes fight
campaign in 2002 inspired by to survive in an empire emptied of people by
the Icerigger Trilogy unknown magic forces.
(Ballantine Del Rey) by Alan
Dean Foster. The books in the
series are Icerigger (1974), Who Are The Heroes?
Mission to Moulokin (1979) Five years ago, a group of powerful mages
and The Deluge Drivers called the Kingfisher Council cast a spell to gain
(1987). The trilogy covers the control of the continent-spanning Empire of
adventures of businessman Koryvoron. The spell backfired with the result a
Ethan Fortune, Professor Milliken Williams worldwide catastrophe. Over 95 people out of
and soldier―of―fortune Skua September after 100 disappeared instantly, blasted out of this
they crash land on the ice world Tran―Ky―Ky. existence by forces beyond their compre―
The natives, a humanoid cat―like race, have hension. Families, neighbors, guilds, armies
some troubles and the heroes are put through and countries disappeared in the blink of an
even more troubles helping them out. Read the eye, never to be seen again. All intelligent
series, it’s great SF! races―humans, demi―humans, humanoids,
and even most monsters―were equally
This series got me to want to run an ice world effected. Whether those that disappeared were
game, so I chose a Morrow Project (Timeline) killed outright or just transported “somewhere
game to try it out in. I worked up some rules, else,” not even the Kingfisher Council could say,
using Big Eyes Small Mouth (Guardians of for they vanished as well. With every village
Order) as the base system and created some depopulated, major cities uninhabited, and
really cool forms for Morrow Industries to use even the Capital massively emptied, the Empire
in their selection process (which provided a collapsed. The heroes are survivors of this
step―by―step plan on character generation for magical holocaust, from all walks and stations
the players). I plan on going back some time of life. Left without knowing what happened or
and updating them for at least one other how, missing family and friends (and even
system, Savage Worlds! (Pinnacle), but for the enemies), they must survive in a world fraught
time being, you’ll just have to deal with BESM with unknown dangers.
(Guardians of Order). (continued on Page 2, First Column)

Content © Wooden Leg Named Smith Productions 2008 published in association with the Corvis Babbage Cliological Society
Website: ’zine art is either open source or through fair use of copyrighted works
One Thousand and One Nights and One Night Page 2
a role-playing game campaign design ’zine Vol.: 2, Issue: 29, May 1, 2008
What Do They Do? The Nature of Magic
With little damage to the world, the heroes The Empire was an old, old civilization, well
must decide whether they will become looters, versed in magic. Formed millennia ago by a
thinking only of survival, or adventurers, cadre of mages, the Empire has cast great
seeking out answers to this catastrophe. Will spells, created enormous amounts of minor and
they fall to base instincts or search for clues to major magic items, and erected colossal
find missing loved ones? Will the heroes form magical constructs, buildings and cities. “Magic
communities, rebuild the might of the is the Empire and the Empire is Magic” was a
Koryvoron Empire, and work for the common popular saying. Minor magic items are common
good, or will they take what they want, rob and throughout the empty Empire and were little
kill without a thought, preying upon the corpse noticed by most Imperial citizens―spell globes
of a great civilization? The remains of the to light streets, magic hearths to heat homes,
Empire are rich in material wealth, some of enchanted tools to aid in manufacturing. Magic
which is still guarded by magic and magical is plentiful but the most dangerous and
constructs, some guarded by survivors like powerful magic is very well guarded. Mages
themselves, and some guarded by monsters and used to also say “Guard well your Secrets” and
strange, otherworldly creatures. many towers, dungeons and castles still hold
secret, puissant magic, waiting for those foolish
Threats, Conflicts, Villains! or clever enough to seek it out.
Villains need no license to do evil, but often
they choose the most opportune time to do What's New? What's Different?
their worst. After the catastrophe, villainy
crawled out of the walls and spread across the
empty land, looting and pillaging as it went.
Some chose to destroy what was already gone,
simply because that was their nature. Bands of
evil formed even faster than communities of
good. Before long, they were on the move,
absorbing or destroying any survivors they
encountered. Murder, slavery and worse With the disappearance of a majority of the
occurred. Others where changed by the cause of sentient populations, the world has become
the ruin itself. When the magical backlash more wild a place―animals, domesticated and
occurred, few people were unaffected―whether wild and dire, are now the true stewards of the
by loss of family, neighbors and friends, or by land. Cities and villages vanish under new plant
even other, more disturbing means. Some of growth, fields are lost to forests, and crops grow
the survivors changed, while they didn’t wild. The surviving population is very small and
disappear they also didn’t stay intact. Maybe communities are no longer homogeneous. In
parts of their minds were changed. Maybe parts any new village, previous “traditional” enmities
of their souls were lost. Not quite Undead, but are put aside in order to survive. Elves may
definitely also not living, they wander the share common goals with orcs and dwarves
Empire attacking everyone without mercy. with goblins. Individuals are accepted not by
Inhumanly strong, resistant to most damage, their race but by the skills and abilities they
and always with the last expression they wore bring to the community. The danger of hidden
before the catastrophe, they are called by many magic and unknown creatures is constant and,
names by survivors: the Vacant, the Lost, with most communities and individuals more
Mage―Zombies, or even just dangerous. willing to flight than fight, those few who seek
(continued on Second Column) out adventure are prized and encouraged.

Content © Wooden Leg Named Smith Productions 2008 published in association with the Corvis Babbage Cliological Society
Website: ’zine art is either open source or through fair use of copyrighted works