by Adam Frank
Forgotten Fable™ is a campaign setting we are developing for the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game. This campaign setting combines elements from many sources of inspiration but leans most heavily on Japanese mythology, the earlier Final Fantasy video games, and some elements of a diesel punk world.
The world of Densetsu was a world rent asunder by war. A dark lord, by the name of Daisuke, had, over a millennium ago, raised an empire. Never satisfied, he constantly waged war to expand his kingdom. War was everywhere and the world was cast into darkness.
Citizens and nobles consistently feared for their lives. Nerves were frayed as no one knew where Daisuke would strike next. He was extremely powerful and his army run by commanders so brilliant that he would almost never lose a battle. It was at this time that the reikojin, armor-bound spirits thirsting for knowledge and life, began to appear.
For over a thousand years war raged on Densetsu. Daisuke still sat on his throne commanding his armies to take more and more. Then the four heroes arrived. Some say they were gifts from the gods, others say they were themselves divine spirits sent to end the rule of the bloodthirsty and unstoppable imperial dictator.
Raito, a rune knight, wielding a sword imbued with spells. Unstoppable, the wounds his enemies would inflict would heal before another strike would land. Ishiko, a beautiful, steadfast templar, her mere presence would stop her enemies in awe and inspire her friends to incredible feats. Mitsu, a conjurer whose powerful summons fought heartily for her while she provided aid to her friends. Finally, Naoyuki, the good-natured ki-master, a man whose battle prowess was unmatched, he fought with power from his fists and the mystical energy he could wield.
The four heroes rallied all of the disheartened, both the powerful and the simple, and turned them into a force to match Daisuke. They eventually brought the fight to his massive fortress and stormed the castle to take on the cruel dark lord and his powerful magics. Though this battle was only in recent history, about a century ago, the stories are varied, some saying the battle took barely any time at all and some saying the siege lasted weeks fighting the infamous emperor.
Since then new warlords have risen to fill the power vacuum. Some build towering cities of technology, others nomadic and battle mad. These warlords are trying to claim what they can in this new world.
Throughout Densetsu, after the collapse of Daisuke's empire, new governments are cropping up some taking the mantle of their people promising peace and freedom, some barely any different than the feared and recently defeated Daisuke. These governments use everything from magic to diesel as a foundation to their power and do their best to create a new kingdom.
The diesel power that Daisuke brought to the world through his engineers is here to stay. Some love it, as it gives a form of magic to the everyman; others fear the black skies it brings when overused. One thing for sure though is that, if nothing else, it has simplified travel and made wars that much more deadly.
Players in the world of Densetsu will be able to explore the new chaos brought about by the defeat of the powerful empire and help to rebuild a world rent asunder by an evil ruler bent on domination. Taking on the roles of the heroes invested in this world the players will be able to make a name for themselves even outdoing the four great heroes. On their adventures they will meet horrible monsters, caring nurturers, diesel powered mechanicha, and all sorts of other surprises.
Will you focus on building up the technology of the world even as skies cloud with smog? Will you focus on powerful magics to best all manner of foes? Do you find yourself drawn to the empire espousing Daisuke's claim of world peace once he ruled all? What will motivate you? And what paths will you take in a world being newly reborn?
Two weeks ago, we introduced the reikojin, a new race for Forgotten Fable™. Be sure to stay tuned as we this setting piece-by-piece.