So, I’ve been doing the research work on a 1050AD Ars Magica setting, involving the invasion of Italy by the Normans. It’s the extension of all the Sicilian stuff you’ve seen on this site if you’ve rummaged around.  I’ve put, perhaps, twenty hours into it recently, so not a lot but,cumulatively, dozens of hours over the last few years.

I’m not sure it is a worthwhile project in the current climate.

If you are not familiar with the dominant threads on the Ars Forum, the basic situation is that Atlas is not continuing to publish Ars 5 material on a fixed schedule, and there is no plan for an imminent Ars 6. Ars is likely to continue through Kickstarters and derived games. My concern is that 1050 is too similar to be a derived game.  The first few kickstarts can’t be similar to the core setting.

My best options, in terms of material I’ve thought a lot about and not managed to get my enthusiasm behind are a game set in Regency/Georgian/Victorian England or a Royal Navy/Spanish Main game.  I think that last one is the way I’m likely to go; it lets me wrap The Patient Art stuff I’ve been working on with water magic, the Cochrane stuff I’ve been working on, and a setting with implicit confrontation together. I realise pirate games were at peak about four years ago…but it seems like the low hanging fruit.

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4 replies on “A Difficult Decision

  1. I know this ain’t very helpful, but whatever you do, I’m sure it’ll be interesting, and that I’ll enjoy reading it. That being said, I agree that any new material, if it wants do draw in new crowds and not just appeal do diehard fans, will need to cover some new ground.
    On that subject, while I’d like some Victorian game, I’d advise against it. I think that Victorian is currently trendy, between Norrel and Penny Dreadful, to name but a few, meaning that, by the time anything gets done, it will no longer be.
    So pirates may be a better idea, despite being old news, unless we can manage to find something really new that’d appeal to you. I can’t see anything, although, if one wants to try for originality, a cavemen Ars RPG would probably be a first.

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  2. I think that pirates may have peaked 4 years ago, but they won’t go out of style the same way some stuff does. Steampunk: your days are numbered…

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  3. The Pirate idea reminded me of something I think would be neat with Ars — an exploration of Mythic Americas ca. 1200. Surely it’s possible that magi are present (I can’t remember if that’s the case in official ArM lore already). As for Pirates v. Victorian — Pirates are always awesome!

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  4. Ancient world would be great, but it’s probably less catchy than pirates. The Roman Republic has loads of weird traditions, ancient rites and magic, intense political struggle, new people to discover and many gods that are more interesting than… God.

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