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Help with New Campaign: The Yggdrasil Lanes

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  • Help with New Campaign: The Yggdrasil Lanes

    Hello everyone,

    I'm brainstorming for a new M&M3e campaign and I could use some ideas to get me out of this analysis paralysis...

    I want to start out with a Hellboy/BPRD style game that slowly transforms into a sci-fi campaign with Earth as the centerpiece. The player characters will start out as half-creatures or descendants of Norse/Viking mythical creatures (Aesir/Vanir, elves, trolls, giants, etc) that find out that the Asgardian gods and creatures of myth are actual aliens, some advanced and some not. I want to portray the galaxy as a network of worlds tied together by the "Yggdrasil Lanes", traveled by the many races out there. I want to get a "Hellboy meets Ben 10 meets Asgardian myth" feel. In the end, the players will be gallivanting across the galaxy, trying to stop everything going up in flames. It will include superhuman abilities, starships, star gates, blasters and timeless struggles for power.

    I can work with the Hellboy-type series, but as it begins to transition over to a "Norse Gods as aliens" series, I am starting to draw a blank on merging Norse myth with science fiction. I don't know much Norse mythology, and I'd like to write in all the usual suspects, from Thor, Loki, Balder, The Allfather, etc.

    But here's what I have so far. I apologize for upchucking this on you all like this... It's a bit of plagiarism, and it's not quite finished, but these are just notes, copied over from Marvel wikis and Norse myth web sites...

    Concept: Hellboy and Ben 10 meets Asgard mythology.

    "The gods are real, but they are not what you would expect."

    The galaxy is full of humanoid alien life, but the Yggdrasil lanes in this region of space are populated by humanoids that fit the Asgardian myths. The Nine Realms are an alien conglomerate of fighting nations.

    The Asgardians are a race of highly advanced humans that combine technology with their enhanced metahuman abilities. Think the Legion of Super Heroes from DC Comics. They believe themselves above all other life in the galaxy and rarely interfere in others matters. When they do get involved, they are swift to pass judgement and commit to action.

    Alfheim is the homeworld of the light "elves". They are scientists and geneticists at heart. They explore the galaxy, studying all there is to see. They have fostered many races on many worlds, some who have been genetically manipulated to save them from extinction.

    Hel is the home of "wayward" refugees. Many species come to Hel when they are escaping war, the authorities or just hiding out. Think of Mos Eisley or Tortuga of pirate fame.

    Jotunheim is the home of giant humanoids. The frost giants, the mountain giants and storm giants are most active on this world. The Jotuns are a warlike culture, trying to expand their influence throughout the galaxy and have an extensive empire.

    Midgard is the home of the humans. They are just now beginning to expand into their solar system. And their advance in technology has begun to cause some mutations, showing superhuman abilities.

    Muspelheim is the home world that a race of demon-looking humanoids exist. The inhabitants of this world are shape changers, cruel and angry, culling aliens as slaves and hunt them for sport. If you are caught by these demons, chances are your life will end with much pain and suffering. Think Darkseid and Apokolips from DC comics.

    Nidavellir is the home of a small humanoid race, named Dwarves in folklore and fantasy fiction. The Nidavellir are builders, miners and fierce warriors. If something needs building, the dwarves can help you out.

    Svartalfheim is the home world of the dark "elves". Where the light elves use science to achive their goals, the dark elves use guile, trickery and subterfuge to get what they want. They gain their technology by stealing it, offer their services as assassins, and topple governments in order to keep their enemies at bay.

    Vanaheim is the home world to the race that are the siblings of the Asgardians. Unlike their stuck up siblings, the Vanaheim believe that enlightenment comes through strife, conflict and evolution. The only way to become truly inherit a higher place in the galaxy, life forms must evolve to take their rightful place.

    Brainstorming, Ideas and Such
    • Each planet has a xenolith somewhere on it that is a gateway to another world, or "alia porta ad mundum", a circular rock formation that may (or may not) have rings that are portals to other planets in the Yggdrasil system.
    • The portals were suspected to have been created by a race long gone, but were created by the Vanir named Njord to move back and forth between worlds.
    • Long ago there was a galaxy wide truce between the Asgard, the Giants, the Demons/Djinn of Mustpelheim and the Elves. This truce negotiated the safety of Midgard, and the creation of the Yggdrasil Lanes.
    • Starships travel the Yggdrasil Lanes much like a ship travels along a river. A starship drive connects to the "lane" and is pulled along its path, depending on how it is linked. They can be used to travel to and from star systems, but outside the connecting lane, travel speed is reduced, with a drifting ship dragged into currents, spirals and other lanes (going who knows where).
    • The Aesir-Vanir War http://norse-mythology.org/tales/the-aesir-vanir-war/
    • Early adventure - "The Head of Mimir" - The disembodied head of one of the most wise Aesir, Mimir was decapitated and sent back to Odin during the Aesir/Vanir War. Odin preserved his head and brought it back to life. The head contains much wisdom and social skills which Mimir possessed. The head has been lost for millennia, but has come to be found in the hands of an upstart politician in a small Asian country. The person has become famous very fast and is gathering power, and no one else knows why. The agency is sent to investigate. (This adventure will start the players down the path to discovering the true existence of the Yggdrasil Lanes.)


    What do you all think? Give me some ideas! Start me up again...

  • #2
    Re: Help with New Campaign: The Yggdrasil Lanes

    Some great ideas, how much will the PC's know about the background when they first start playing? And having sorted out the background who will be the major villains and when/how will they interact with the PCs? Can I ask how much imput the players have had into the background because if the answer is not a lot then I'd advise you to just jump straight into starting playing because you'll find the characters they create will heavily influence what information you will use and develop further and which just make for a consistant and logical universe to help act as an adventure prompt.

    One quick thought about "The Head of Mimir" adventure - what happens WHEN the players obtain the head and decide to retain it and use it, how would it then influence any of their future adventures?

    Good luck! I look forward to possibly reading your players adventures.

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Help with New Campaign: The Yggdrasil Lanes

      Originally posted by SignalGK View Post
      Some great ideas, how much will the PC's know about the background when they first start playing? And having sorted out the background who will be the major villains and when/how will they interact with the PCs? Can I ask how much imput the players have had into the background because if the answer is not a lot then I'd advise you to just jump straight into starting playing because you'll find the characters they create will heavily influence what information you will use and develop further and which just make for a consistant and logical universe to help act as an adventure prompt.

      One quick thought about "The Head of Mimir" adventure - what happens WHEN the players obtain the head and decide to retain it and use it, how would it then influence any of their future adventures?

      Good luck! I look forward to possibly reading your players adventures.
      I want to start the campaign with the players as agents of a secret worldwide agency that investigates paranormal incidences, a group of freaks that keep other freaks out of the limelight. As they get deeper into the agency, they will find out that the old Norse gods and creatures of legend are real aliens. The player characters will soon discover Norn portals to other worlds, which will expose the rest of the galaxy to the presence of Earth or Midgard. Then they will have to deal with off-world threats, much like the crew of Stargate. Galactic wars, intrigue and old grudges will then take over the story. I am hoping that character lineage will help with story creation and buy-in. Hopefully they will be willing to search out their ancestry, which with drive them to certain worlds, NPCs and story lines.

      I want to treat the Head of Mimir like an encyclopedia of knowledge for the players. The head will be filled with wisdom and diplomacy, and will answer most of the player's questions if they ask. It will be an artifact that will create as many questions as answers. Where did it come from? How is it still alive? Who else knows about it? It might be an artifact that needs to be turned over to someone that can protect it better than they can...

      Comment

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