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Campaign Overview

I am starting a new campaign for the Pendragon system, and am primarily seeking about six players who know the mechanics of the system reasonably well to commit to a long-term game. Pendragon is set during the times of King Arthur in sixth century Britain, and unlike other games, an epic scope and attention to personal advancement as well as adventuring means that players do not only control a central character but, over time, dynasties of descendants. While it is unlikely that, given the speed of e-mail games, we will get much beyond a second generation (your character's children), I at least hope to solidly flesh out the main character's full lifetime. To be somewhat more precise: in Pendragon, gameplay doesn't take place as a continual narrative, moving through the days and thus (in live or e-mail form) take forever to play out a week or single scenario; instead, life-management takes place off-camera (so to speak), and characters play out the key points in each year (if any) which contribute to the overall dynastic storyline. Pendragon, like the Arthurian myths, is a game of feuds, wars and love affairs conducted over the course of decades, with children and children's children carrying on the destinies begun by their forebears.

The game will commence in the year 495 in Lyonesse, the westernmost point of Cornwall. Characters will all be youths (that is, 15-19), left at home and falling upon their own resources during the horrible events at St Albans while the majority of mature and capable fighting men are away. The campaign will begin with the fallout from the assassination of Uther Pendragon, and the plunging of Britain back into the chaos it has only recently escaped from. In all likelihood, every character's parent generation will also have perished at St Albans. In the aftermath of the death of the High King, and for the third time in one hundred years, the country must look to its own defences. Britain becomes lawless once more, and initially players will be involved in trying to defend and maintain their homelands against robber knights and opportunistic Saxon, Welsh and Irish invaders, along with various other assorted problems.

Characters should be well thought-out and have some form of melodramatic hook for use in developing the character over time (what's called a "story arch" in film). Please pay attention to names, as these can make or break the GM's ability to conceive or picture your character (ask if you need help, or look up historical names on the net). Pendragon, and this campaign, are based in the historical sixth century, and names, places, cultures etc will be reflected accordingly. In later stages (far down the track) things will move to a more Romantic inclination, per Malory, but this is far from a consideration yet. Differing from my past efforts, in this campaign I will be portraying the Otherworld of Celtic/Christian mythology in an extremely Romantic/Spenserian/High Medieval style. I don't want to give away too much of the fantastical elements of the campaign, but understand at least that west of Lyonesse is the ocean and (in some folklores) the supposed location of Atlantis. I'll be combining the Celtic Tir na nOg with the Malorian Avalon and later Romantic Atlantis and Hy Brasil. This will mean that any knights inadvertently sucked into the Otherworld are more likely to find themselves in a misty land of pennant-ed castles, swan-crest helmeted chevaliers and ladies in wimples; rather than the woad-tattooed, spike-haired, chariot-steering roughnecks my past tabletop Pendragon players might be used to.

GM posts will be every day or two, since I check mail most days anyway. A regular response is expected from players, but things will not be too strict (so long as you understand that you signed up to play a game, and simply not being involved and not bothering to post are anti-social behaviours). For example, in times of combat, players must respond with their character's tactics promptly (within two days) so that the thrice-weekly turns can be reported on by the GM. In non-combat times, players can respond as quickly as they like, with twice weekly replies being the baseline. Since this is NOT a writing RPG -- apart from character speech, all that is asked for are basic well-written directions; I don't want to churn through long, melodramatic posts, nor be guilty of writing the same; rather than being novelists busting our humps to describe scenes poetically, we'll be role-players giving out basic information and instructions -- players shouldn't be too stressed about the workload of participating in the game. However, if your current PBeM load stops you from taking on even one more game, I understand.

All dice rolling will be done by the GM. People who join the game will be asked to fill out a simple chart which I'll use as a guide in combat. Unlike other PBeMs (and my Vikingsaga PBeM) players won't dictate combat on a blow-by-blow basis; an indication of targets and fighting tactics will be given by the player in response to a brief outline of the combat situation, and the GM will then carry through determining results until such a time as the scenario changes sufficient to demand a reconsideration of character tactics. Glory (the experience point system of the game) and some other considerations will be kept track of online, on a simple web page dedicated to the game.

I've run druids/enchantresses/etc in my real life game and now I just want to try and run a proper KAP game, focusing on the generations and the descendants of knights. Getting the character name right is extremely important to me. If you wish to apply, send me your character name and place of origin. I'll only accept 1 or 2 non-Cornish types in the game, so these spots are limited and will be given to the person with the coolest ideas (people I don't accept can still submit a Cornish character). If I am happy with the character name, I'll send you your basic physical stats and you can then generate your character based on these, or I can help you.