LINK Worlds 2014

Okay, so I’m designing an interactive storytelling/role playing board game, and I’m trying to define the numerous settings I eventually want to design tiles and cards for. The game is still coming together in my head, but that’s not where it needs to be, so I’m going to do a little bit of blurb writing to fill in some of the gaps in my plans:
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LINK Worlds: The Game – SEASON ONE

1) LINK: Pangaea – Prehistoric environments and mostly-sentient species with eerily familiar problems and drama, as they work to prevent mass extinction.
2) LINK: Empire – Classical Mediterranean world history turned on its ear. History is written by the survivors, and not necessarily by the ones who knew best. Secret societies and cults galore.
3) LINK: Discovery – The Age of Discovery and Enlightenment was never quite like this. Historic figures leading double lives and engaging in arcane experiments and power struggles.
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4) LINK: Nightmares – You think you love vampires and zombies, spectres and werewolves, but you’ll learn to fear and loathe them again when you find yourself living in the World of Dusk.
5) LINK: Mysteries – The clock turns back to the classic age of parlour murder mysteries, with fine dining, luxury vehicles, snappy dressing, and of course, a generous dash of murder.
6) LINK: Secrets – The Cold War may be a thing of the past, but not for you, as you are trapped in an unending web of lies, terror, intrigue, and of course, the occasional assassination.
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7) LINK: Retropolis – Remember those 1950-1960s ads and exhibits that encouraged us to dream about that World of Tomorrow that never quite materialized? Well, here it is, more or less.
8) LINK: Constellation – Space travel and alien encounters on countless planets, colonies and satellites, as you work to uncover the secrets of the ancients that once ruled the universe.
9) LINK: Tubeways – In the Industrial Age, huge locomotives were built to move people and commodities across the land. But how they got from one place to the next was another matter.
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10) LINK: Shadows – In the gritty world of the dimestore detective novel, the Good Guy didn’t often wear white, and didn’t always get the girl. But at least he understood his world. Until now.
11) LINK: Kingdom – The World of Veil is actually series of Broken Worlds patched together into one continuously-changing planet, where sentient species from many medieval societies coexist.
12) LINK: Oceanea – A victim of interdimensional flooding that changed the nature of sea travel, which is very nearly the only way to get around. Magic, flying carpets and Djinn abound.
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SEASON TWO

13) LINK: Regency (?) – In a world of genteel manners and rigid social structures, something new. dark and dangerous had been set loose upon the world that threatens to envelop it in darkness.
14) LINK: Frontier – Settlers on the new continents met with numerous hardships, but perhaps the worst was the ancient, forgotten Darkness that was returning to reclaim the world.
15) LINK: Century – Euroboran civilisation has achieved a level of success that will not soon be forgotten. But ancient forces have arisen to drag it back into the murky depths of prehistory.
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16) LINK: Faerie – The Fae realms have opened and closed to the worlds of mankind many times throughout time and space, but never has it opened to a more inhospitable, troubled world than this.
17) LINK: Freesia – The Ice Age has come once again, but much faster and more brutal than recorded history can recall. Perhaps this will be the last Ice Age, from which we never return.
18) LINK: Pantheon – Mankind has died off, and Earth returned to wilderness. Now, the gods of old have returned to raise up new societies from the sentient species of animals that have evolved.
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19) LINK: NüTopia – In a futuristic world of hypercomputers, holographic structures and artificial everything, an alien presence now challenges the population to adapt once more or perish.
20) LINK: Pulp – The fictional worlds of mad scientists and archeological explorers has come to life in the modern world, but how can a dull society force-fed fake Reality television cope?
21) LINK: Nova – Superheroes and faithful sidekicks explode from the pages of the comic books to confront a world that has never known the concepts of good or evil. Hijinks ensues.
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22) LINK: Aeronius – The Age of Flight has descended gloriously onto the world, with every imaginable invention of flight working better than intended, until the dark secret is revealed.
23) LINK: Absurdia – In a world hidden in a perpetual 1950s time loop, strange truths surface, and the pleasant facade of this perfect society begins erode in kaleidoscopic chaos.
24) LINK: Morphous – The world behind the door, between the walls, and beneath the cupboards isn’t just occupied by insects and vermin; it’s the secret, mystical world of the Morphous.
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SEASON THREE

25) LINK: Euroboros – Ancient Euroboros has a secret that it may take to the grave: It was originally engineered and controlled by a city of alien sorcerers.
26) LINK: Avalon – The Mystical Isles have hidden history and geography that have been forgotten by the world of man. Soon the Gates of Avalon will open once more, but to usher in what?
27) LINK: Wystria – The empire of Wystrus, the greatest king of medieval times, is under attack from unseen forces that threaten to undo all of the great changes he has wrought.
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28) LINK: Zahara – A mystical world stripped of its healing waters ekes out a meager existence, until the discovery of a vast underwater ocean leads the tribes of Zahara into world war.
29) LINK: Ægypt – In the world of the Ageless Ægyptian Empire, which has ruled for countless millennia, a new paradigm is changing the nature of reality, and Ægypt must adapt or fade away.
30) LINK: Æternum – The Roman Empire never fell. You may have heard this strange conspiracy theory uttered by lunatics, but now you too have the Sight that allows you to see it for yourself.
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31) LINK: Allegiance – The Last War brings entire nations together to fight a common foe, but when that foe is revealed to be controlled by forces beyond reckoning, what will mankind do?
32) LINK: Backroads – The Highwayverse is ruled by Truckers, Bikers, and Smokies, and the people who live up and down its great expanse are all fair game, until a new breed takes to the road.
33) LINK: Superpowers – The Cold War is nearly over, and economic prosperity is on the rise–for the rich. Meanwhile, the rest of the world has yet to feel the recovery, until aliens arrive.
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34) LINK: Dynasty – In the ancient lands of the East, entire dynastic orders have come and gone when the Western World is still new. Then a great man builds a pleasure done, and it all changes.
35) LINK: Steppelands – Revolution is fomenting in the streets, and the Tsar fears for his family and his loyal subjects. Then a stranger makes him an offer he can’t refuse, and it all changes.
36) LINK: Tropica – The world is growing hotter. So much so that the seas are rising as the polar ice caps melt, and ancient monsters are returning from the permafrost to reclaim the world.
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SEASON FOUR – Extended Specials

37) LINK: Spiritus – In the desert outback, the last survivors of a planet ravaged by disease, famine and environmental disaster find themselves guided by ancient spirits into new realities.
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38) LINK: Mystica – In the last days of the High Sourcerors of Ætillan, their home island is threatened with arcane disaster. But their greatest Sourceror has one more trick up his sleeve.
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39) LINK: Tourista – The civilisation of mankind has flourished and spread throughout the stars and even through time and into other realities, but the cost of their travels is about to arrive.
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40) LINK: Continuum – The final installment of the LINK Worlds, where the most singular minds in all of Reality have to work together to prevent the Entropic Dissolution of All Reality.
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And there you have it; the most complete list of ideas I can think of at the moment for the game series. A lot of it is adapted from what Rodney Brazeau and I were going to do together with Link Worlds as an RPG series, but I think this might be a new, cooler, more interesting way to implement the series. The art may take a while, but I may surprise myself… or find some relatively inexpensive illustrators to help me get things done.

Three things I debated with this concept, and those were:
1) Whether to incorporate strategy into the mix?
2) Whether to incorporate Deck Building into the mix?
and 3) Whether to incorporate Civilization-building gameplay into the mix?

Ultimately, I decided those would be too much. They seem like good ideas, and maybe I’ll conceive of some alternate rules that allow such gameplay variations for those who enjoy that sort of thing. But in the end, what I really want is that mix of Clue (suspense), Carcassonne (setting building and exploration), and Arkham Horror (teamwork and dangerous encounters), all rolled up into a game that rewards creativity and good roleplaying. The rules I’ll devise to implement that gameplay are almost beside the point. I didn’t get into this because I want to inhibit people. I just want to give them a fair chance to tell a story interactively, and this sounds like a good way even the least confident of storytellers can get started dreaming up gonzo adventures and visiting strange new places.

I may decide to start a crowdfunding campaign to fund the manufacture of this.

Well, I’ve been writing this for a while, so I think it’s time to stop and take care of other stuff. Thank you for reading.

Lee.

Don't be shy. Tell me what you really think, now.

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