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One of the most important things to be able to do as a game writer is set the stage in which the game is going to take place. Tonight, I’m going to lay down a game setting for the Angels Fall First Universe. A way long time back, one of the team members, Stranj, proposed that we do some text-based role-playing as a team. It was fun, but I would have been relied upon to really lead it (as the writer) and I didn’t have the time to really pick it up. Also it didn’t seem like many other people were interested.

In addition to all that, I have been slightly put off web-based text RPGs ever since I led fD&D back in my Blizzforum days (as Ajaz50). It wasn’t the system that was disastrous, it was the play, with many time zones and people barking at me about ed. rules. However, we do have an IRC room for the AFF team and reading Midgar is Burning over at The Escapist made me think. Perhaps it might be time to give such an endeavor a try.

I have to admit, that I’ve been thinking about what way to play an AFFU RPG. In my (humble) opinion, the focus of RPGs are on the players and what characters they build. This is partly my own way of thinking, as I have been known to spend hours figuring out elaborate backstories for my characters, setting up character traits, and figuring out what actions they would take according to their personalities. You don’t want to know how long it took me to set up my Mass Effect characters, and I must have literally been staring at the screen for a half-hour when my character game to the first big good/evil decision of the game. I had to balance what I wanted to do and what the character whom I had created might do.

As such, having the characters on the massive spaceships that populate the AFFU doesn’t make much sense in my mind. Their conversations and interactions are meditated by comm links and separated in the dead of space. I wouldn’t go as far as saying that in space, no one can hear you roleplay, but in a case where (as it no doubt would be for AFFU-ers) people would be playing opposing forces, it would be a pain.

So it has to be on a planet.

But even a planet might be too large, at least as a starting off point. So I went through my mind-catalogue and looked at AFFU art.

And there it was:

[note: Graphics are created by the AFFU team, not me.]

The bridge city. It was perfect. Admittedly, these concepts were really only jumping off points. I needed something far more gritty and complex. But the idea of a city out in the water connected to the mainland only by a single bridge. It was perfect. It would be a city on the water.

The Bridge City of Distad

I can see the plot line following the setting very well. I had a measure of control over the area and a good motivation for a plot. Now to figure out the setup.

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