Fourth Age

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Fourth Age (titled at random until I bother with large scale background) is the setting being developed as Ontological Zombie runs old school AD&D modules converted into GURPS. While it's starting with that conversion as a base, it is entirely likely that the end result won't resemble Dungeons and Dragons very much at all.

World Information

The world of the Fourth Age is superficially that of Earth during several historical periods. Cultures from various points of human history have been set alongside each other. The Holy Roman Empire, Arragon, Castile, and the Kingdom of France sit alongside the Italian city-states, Dalian League, and the Heptarchy in Britain. Further east is Imperial Russia, the Egyptian New Kingdom, and the Viking Kingdoms raid and trade with all of it.

It was all chosen for maximal gaming potential, but the history will all make it make sense. Somehow. For now, just roll with it and assume it's as it should be.

General Information

Calendar

Most of Europe follows the ancient Roman calendar, counting years since the legendary founding of Rome, marking the current as 2111 AUC. It should be noted that while it is possible to connect this with a historical real-world year, the nature of the civilizations being from different eras makes any parallels highly unlikely.

Months

  • Ianuarius (31 days)
  • Februarius (28/29 days)
  • Martius (31 days)
  • Aprilis (30 days)
  • Maius (31 days)
  • Junius (30 days)
  • Iulius (31 days)
  • Augustus (31 days)
  • September (30 days)
  • October (31 days)
  • November (30 days)
  • December (31 days)

Days

The days of the week are named based on Ptolemic a theory regarding astrological bodies. The names used are in Latin.

  • Dies Solis
  • Dies Lunae
  • Dies Martis
  • Dies Mercurii
  • Dies Jovis
  • Dies Veneris
  • Dies Saturni

Religion

In Europe most nations follow the Roman Paganism left behind by the Roman Empire, headed by the Pontifex Maximus in Rome. The Norsemen still follow their own religion, the Celts theirs, and while the Heptarch follow Roman Paganism they do so without ties to the Pontifex Maximus.

Technology

The setting is a base TL 3, though there are areas of lower and higher tech (though without gunpowder.) High Tech is required to start with TL4+, and Primative if you're not used to TL3.

Money

Each nation has its own coins, but for convienience assume that they're all variations on the standard Dungeons and Dragons gold pieces, silver pieces, copper pieces, electrum pieces, and platinum pieces.

In GURPS terms:

  • 1 pp = $50
  • 1 gp = $10
  • 1 ep = $5
  • 1 sp = $1
  • 1 cp = $.1

Standard starting wealth is $1000 regardless of a character's personal Tech Level, and TL4 items, when available, cost twice as much as book prices.

History

The cultures we haven't used as 'current' are those that have come before, and they've left ruins about to plunder. Sumerian/Babylonian, ancient Minoan, proto-Ural.

There have also been nonhuman empires in the past.

Nations

Europe

British Isles

Western Europe

Mediterranean

Northern Europe

Organizations

Character Creation

Rules Modifications

Armor Weights

The following armor weights are considered to be more realistic than the weights given in the GURPS characters book, and will suffice until GURPS Low Tech is released.

Body Armor:

  • Bronze Breastplate: 7 lbs.
  • Bronze Corselet: 14 lbs.
  • Light Scale Armor: 15 lbs.
  • Mail Hauberk: 14 lbs.
  • Mail Shirt: ??
  • Scale Armor: 22.5 lbs.
  • Double Mail Hauberk: 24 lbs.
  • Heavy Steel Corselet: 25.5 lbs.
  • Steel Breastplate: 11 lbs.
  • Steel Corselet: 22 lbs.
  • Steel Laminate Plate: 27 lbs.

Limb Armor:

  • Bronze Armbands: 6lbs.
  • Bronze Greaves: 9 lbs.
  • Mail Leggins: 10 lbs.
  • Mail Sleeves: 7 lbs.
  • Scale Leggins: 9 lbs.
  • Scale Sleeves: 13.5 lbs.
  • Heavy Plate Arms: 13 lbs.
  • Heavy Plate Legs: 17.5 lbs.
  • Plate Arms: 11 lbs.
  • Plate Legs: 15 lbs.

Headgear:

  • Bronze Pot-Helm: 2 lbs.
  • Legionary Helmet: 4 lbs.
  • Mail Coif: 2 lbs.
  • Greathelm: 5 lbs.
  • Pot-Helm: 3 lbs.

Gloves:

  • Gauntlets: 2.5 lbs.
  • Heavy Gauntlets: 3 lbs

Magic

Most wizards use standard GURPS spell magic, but some use Rune magic (particularly the druids and the Norsemen). The elven nation of Eire uses Ritual Magic.

Arcane magic cannot be performed while wearing armor. This provides a 10% point break on the cost of magery.

Spells granted through Power Investiture do not suffer this restriction.

Divinity

Devout characters can and will gain supernatural gifts from the deity they serve. These take advantages of advantages with the Divine power descriptor from GURPS Powers (20% point break). Abilities gained in play are chosen by the deity, not the character.

There are two ways of gaining these powers.

The Safe Way

Players may put aside a number (or even all) of their unspent character points from which the deity they serve can bestow powers upon them from. As the character commits great deeds favorable to the deity and/or in the deity's name, the Deity may reward the character with a divine gift. There is no formula for this and it isn't a sure thing, but in general the more difficult the task and the more it benefits the deity the greater the chance of the character being rewarded.

The Quick Way

Players may take on a disadvantage and hope that the deity will reward them for their dedication/suffering by converting the lost character points into Divine abilities. You might hobble your leg to appeal to Haephestus, or take on a vow of Murder for Kali. It is risky, for chances are you won't be compensated, ever, but the more your deity already likes you, the better a chance there is of you getting empowered, at least in a minor way.

Creatures

Campaigns

Fourth Age:Origins is a campaign set in this setting run as a Play-By-Post game on the SomethingAwful Traditional Games forum. It is being built out of conversions of several old dungeons and dragons modules.