The game is a limited test run for future ideas, a contained environment where I can learn how to handle writing in the Louisiana Universe, and how to GM this type of game without exerting myself. Each player - who will be limited to eight people - takes the role of a prisoner aboard the stranded Minerva, a penal ship wrecked on a desert island in the middle of the Baltic Sea. It will be up to them how to survive, attain their liberty, and either make their escape - or, perhaps, establish a new way of life on the island...
The most interesting gameplay mechani[*]c will be the simulation of every single person found within the setting, over 300 people. Each will have an unique biography, with various amounts of information available to the players. With each person, in whichever category - dissident, criminal, crew, peasant, etc. - they belong to, will be assigned a number, a number which will then be used in a random number generator whenever an event takes place that requires an NPC. Thus, whenever guards are alerted, a prisoner hit by a stray bullet, a peasant approached to talk, unique characters will be generated to fill this role, bringing greater depth to the story.
The game is limited by time, and will run no more than three turns, the first one running across one single day, and the rest having varying length depending on circumstances.
Current signups: 9/10
- Master of Oblivion
The year is 1792. Amid the first whispers that King Gustav III - the Theatre King - has been shot, possibly even killed, by unknown assassins during an evening masquerade, a ship casts off from Stockholm's harbour. The Minerva.
She is an unusually well-armed penal vessel, heavy with cargo and cannons, set to sail down along the eastern coast to the German states of the Baltic, where a small clique of religious and political dissidents are to enter exile, on orders of the Royal Court. Atheists, Swedenborgians, Moravians, blasphemers, Anjala Men, radical patriots, liberals, constitutionalists, an old member of the Caps... perhaps, hidden beneath other layers, even a few sympathisers of the Jacobins, whose taint has gripped France, the most significant Swedish ally! The bulk of the human cargo, however, is a lesser crowd which hardly derives from the aristocracy, clergy and urban burghers - an assortment of thieves, swindlers, rapists, smugglers, sodomites, runaway farmhands, a murderer or two... - who the Minerva are too drop off along the coast, at various cities and forts, for hard labour or execution in their respective hometowns.
Little comes of this itinerary, however. Off the coast of Öland, a sudden storm captures the Minerva in its grip, and throws her north-east, into the heart of the dark Baltic Sea. The mast breaks, the lifeboats are smashed, two deckhands are thrown overboard. As dawn finally comes and the winds give out, Captain Thomas von Rajalin finds his beloved ship stranded on a sandy beach, firmly stuck. A landing party soon confirms their location: Gotska Sandön, the Gotlandic Sand Isle.
An island merely 14 square miles big, dominated by beach dunes and an deep and ancient pine forest, it holds a population of no more than ten impoverished peasant families, lacks natural harbours, and is almost completely isolated from the outside world. Littered with wrecks (and the graves of their crews), Sand Isle is hardly a welcome sight. With all major trade routes many miles away, and with no other arrivals expected for several months, the Captain faces the tough reality: They're not leaving any time soon, and the prisoners are in an uproar.
1772 Map of Sand Isle: https://i.imgur.com/nXIbzxT.jpg
Location Map of Sand Isle: https://i.imgur.com/vsmtLY0.png
Chart depicting Gotska Sandön, 1772.
Photos of modern-day Sand Isle: