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  #1  
Old Apr 30th, 2024, 04:02 AM
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Worldbuilding ideas for the world of Ossenheim

Off and on I've been mulling over some ideas for a world I'd like to set a game in someday. At this point, which game/ruleset I might use is really not important--the world still needs more building, and what I really haven't gotten any kind of decent start on is plotlines, or what might lead to an adventure in this world.

So I thought I'd start by dumping here all the stuff I have so far. My hope is that others will be interested and inspired to make suggestions.

 


 


 


 


 

Last edited by Keante; Jun 13th, 2024 at 01:15 PM.
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Old May 6th, 2024, 05:00 AM
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Thanks for sharing, its a good start.

It's a challenge to provide advice to someone else world, as it's your world, and you should write and do what works for you.

But here's some questions, that some potential explorers of your world may ask:

- I was curious about the races and know more about the common people who live in that world that form the majority of the population. I would assume the large aristocratic dynasties are uncommon.

- Did you also thought about the major realms that exist and how they are different from each other?

- When people look in the sky, what are they seeing, how many moons, how many suns, what's the color, any star that stand out that has religious significance.

- About the cosmology, do you have planes, how do they interact with the world?

- Regarding weather, what does it look like?

- I like the necromantic culture, but do they have rivals or other nations that oppose those practices and have different view about the cycle of life and unlife?

- Is there some powerful bad guys factions who oppose what you wrote in ethics? That want for example to transform everybody in mindless undead?

That's the first things i humbly was feeling need maybe more information.

I hope this help your creativity to think about those things.

Last edited by MoonZar; May 6th, 2024 at 06:53 AM.
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Old May 17th, 2024, 11:27 AM
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Hello.

So, when it comes to plotlines my mind thinks of two general categories; those common plotlines that can occur in any world and those that are unique to the current world.

Common plotlines cover the usual stories; forces of good versus evil, someone trying to gain power and dominance, war/conflict (between nations, races, or groups), adventures for the party (to find something or someone, to solve some problem, etc.). These stories are generic though and can be applied anywhere, with some specific flavor from your custom world.

Unique plotlines can be much more difficult because they rely so heavily on the context of your custom world. While they will still likely follow the traditional stories mentioned above, they are much more unique and specific to your world. They also require a much greater understanding and familiarity of your world on the part of your players. The more unique your plotline, the more they must understand.

You have clearly put a lot of thought and effort into this world, and it is unique. I think the real question is, How much do you want your custom world to influence the plotlines and players? If the answer is a lot, then you will have to tie the stories to your world very closely. It won't be, "generic bad guy is over there, go get them". It will have to be, "Lord Orum of House Sikes has broken with tradition and dishonored the sacred dead and ancestors within the realm of Highmarch. He has (used revenants inappropriately, stolen others' revenants, or cheated others economically). His actions will lead to the disruption of life in Highmarch and if not stopped, may spread to other realms. More importantly, we CANNOT allow such dishonor and treatment to befall the ancestors of ANY family in Ossenheim!" And as your world and plotlines grow, if they are more unique, then you will have to consider how they interconnect and what the greater overarching impacts are.
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Old Jun 13th, 2024, 07:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MoonZar View Post
I was curious about the races and know more about the common people who live in that world that form the majority of the population. I would assume the large aristocratic dynasties are uncommon.
The merchant and artisan classes form the economic engine, with humans and other races mingling. In agrarian regions, free farmers and bound serfs alike work lands owned by noble houses. Urban centers have growing populations of clerks, craftspeople, and entrepreneurs.

As for the aristocracy, the oldest human dynasties still dominate. But fortunes rise and fall; once-great families can become "fallen nobility" if they lose wealth or influence. Meanwhile, newly elevated houses (like Tyrian or Myradyne) gain status through canny business or indispensable services.

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Originally Posted by MoonZar View Post
Did you also thought about the major realms that exist and how they are different from each other?
Ossenheim itself is a large nation covering varied terrain - river valleys, grassy steppes, dense woodlands, jagged mountains. But it has neighboring nations with distinct characteristics:
 

 

 


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Originally Posted by MoonZar View Post
When people look in the sky, what are they seeing, how many moons, how many suns, what's the color, any star that stand out that has religious significance.
There are two moons: Nox (large and gray) and Lumen (smaller, faintly golden). Their phases influence the ebb and flow of magical energies. During the dark of Nox, necromantic rituals are potent but dangerous. When both moons are full - the Twicelit Night - the veil between life and death is thinnest.

The constellations include the Reaper (Revenor's scythe), the Hourglass (Tempus' emblem), and the Eternal Flame (sacred to Solarians). Periodically, a blood-red star called the Deathshroud appears, heralding times of great change.

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Originally Posted by MoonZar View Post
About the cosmology, do you have planes, how do they interact with the world?
The Mortal Realm: Our physical world.
The Dreaming: Mortus' domain of visions and portents; brushes against our reality during sleep.
The Veil: A transitory space where souls linger before moving on. Necromancers can reach through it to contact spirits. Pathfinder abilities that have to do with the Ethereal Plane would involve the Veil, instead.
The Grand Sepulcher: Revenor's lightless realm for departed souls. Not evil, but solemn and still.

Perhaps there could also be some alien Far Realm, if players were interested in aberrations coming through cracks in reality.

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Originally Posted by MoonZar View Post
Regarding weather, what does it look like?
Ossenheim's climate is broadly temperate, with four distinct seasons. But Caelo's moods make the weather rather unpredictable.
Spring brings warm rains to nourish crops. Mist and fog is a frequent occurrence.
Summer sees golden days of abundance, sometimes broken by thunderstorms that locals say are Caelo arguing with others among the gods.
Autumn's crisp air carries whispering winds. Many festivals honor the dead as leaves fall.
Winter can be bitter, with blizzards that seal families in their homes to tell generational tales. Some say Caelo grieves in the season of sleep.

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I like the necromantic culture, but do they have rivals or other nations that oppose those practices and have different view about the cycle of life and unlife?
The Solarian Lightbringers: Clerics from Solaria to the south, who consider it obscene to disturb eternal rest. They sometimes send zealous hunters to neighboring lands.
Vitalist Covens: Reclusive witches in small isolated groups (they can be located in Solaria, Ossenheim, or the Frostmark, having little regard for political borders) who believe revenants unnaturally prolong what should gracefully end. They promote acceptance of mortality as a returning of one's body to nature. Some paint them as heretical devotees of Vita.
The Stilling Hand: A secret society of assassins who grant "true death" to revenants they see as having unnaturally extended their influence. This society originated in Thassalios, and some of the more violently-inclined elements among the Umbral League find common cause with them.

Last edited by Keante; Jun 13th, 2024 at 07:45 PM.
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Old Jun 14th, 2024, 09:34 AM
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I also added some examples of aristocratic families to the original post (see the new spoiler at the bottom, "a few family names").
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Old Jun 16th, 2024, 11:02 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Keante View Post
I also added some examples of aristocratic families to the original post (see the new spoiler at the bottom, "a few family names").
Ok. From this point an option could be to determine how the families obtained their titles. How did the King become the ruler?

Was it amicable? or did he overthrow a family for control? If the latter, are there any relatives of the deposed rulers? That alone provides a great series of stories. Then the aristocrats are the same way. I have an ancestor that colluded to take another noble's property, which made that former noble's family destitute. This story ends when the son of that deposed noble dressed as a servant and stabbed my Greatx6 Grandmother as she was stepping out of the bath.

Maybe there was a family betrayal and now the siblings are colluding against each other (more stories). Maybe an envious merchant has a grudge with one of the nobles, but also knows they cant take the noble in a fight. Maybe a disease ridden lady of the night is trying to blackmail one of the nobles.


Another thing is what kind of structures does do the aristocrats live in and those of the peasantry. Celtic, German, Franco, Spanish, italians, Scandinavians, Greeks, Euro-Asians, and Asians all had vastly different building structures. Russian peasants had large brick ovens in their homes and at night, they slid the small kids into the oven, the older kids in a roof next to the oven, and the adults slept on a bench that was part of the oven. This way they kept warm. They also slept with the livestock in the same home. Vastly different from other cultures.
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