The Lorians come from a world called Loria which is split into Kingdoms and a few Republics or city states.
In style and political stance they are Napoleonic, but their technology is drawn from SteamPunk, leading to steam-driven automatons, repeating weapons, “galvanic force” machinery and other “strange science”.
So far within the game
they have given us organised military explorers, guilds, duellists, Sky Pirates
and sky kraken “whalers” (though the “Sky Kraken” are now extinct)
Costume Requirements: Human 18th Century, Mechanoids/golems full costume covering human features.
Races: Human, of the Napolionic and steampunk style, Golems & Steamjacks (sentiant or not)
Inspiration: Some elements of Steampunk, Sharp, hornblower, The Island of Doctor Moreau (among other HG Wells and Jules Verne), Deadwood.
Science has taken a different turn to ours and can be broken into the following areas (as noted on the forums):
The flintlock is fairly common, as is good steel, though expensive, some early industrialisation, and the factory is starting to be a common thing to see.
Man-made materials are rare, and most things are made from wood, metals (such as bronze, copper, lead, occasionally steel, etc.) and leather. Rubber is not common.
The Steam Engine and Clockwork is advanced, also Galvanic force is being used in a variety of experiments, both medical (or at least surgical) and in construction of items. However, the combustion engine is a brand new and mostly ignored creation, in fact there are only four, and one of those has been stolen.
There are, however, strange aberrations from what one would find in history (as noted above) so I will try and break this down and give some examples.
Galvanic Manipulation – The art of catching lightning and using it in coils and simple batteries; its medical uses include “reanimation” similar to the Frankenstein’s Monster style experiments. It is also used to catch and charge simple batteries that are used to speed up Cogwork, or create a charge for weapons (most notably the galvanic force blades carried by some cavalry).
CogWork – The art of making and manipulating clockwork to create everything from simple turning devices (such as the repeating weapons some lucky officers of the military or special forces have access to, despite their capacity to jam regularly): these have got smaller, and smaller, allowing more and more delicate devices.
PostHuman Alchemy – The alchemical experiments into speeding up human evolution a good example that has been somewhat successful is the Jaeger.
A list of items by availability to give an idea; this does not take into account the cost of the item; though it may be common, the chances are that a poor person (considering the overrun gutters and fit to bursting workhouses) would still rarely see these things.
Common: Flintlock weapons, “guinea” (poor steel) blades, horses, carriages, semaphore towers, clocks down to the size of a pocket watch.
Uncommon: Clockwork repeater weapon, a simple telescope or microscope, ships of the line, rifled weapon.
Rare: Dirigible style airships, cogwork articulate limbs, good telescopes or microscopes, automatons, Repeater weapon with Galvanically speeded cogwork, Galvanic charge weapon, “reanimation”.
Very Rare: good cogwork limbs, with inbuilt items, flying ships powered other than by gas and steam, Frankenstein-like monsters.
Important People & Places
The “Alliance”: is a loose federation of those countries that would otherwise form Europe, designed to stop from war on the continent and to strengthen there trading position. Avalon and Montaine are key partners in the Alliance as is many of the more western countries to one extent or another.
Eisen: A Teutonic style country that borders both Montaine, Vallenstock and Jaeger, as such it is a country made of smaller “Dukedoms” or Kingdoms that are quite martial and self ruling. They are a part of the Alliance in theory, but are known for having a fairly spirited political institution, meaning that no one is quite sure what there foreign policy will be in the next few years. It is strongly hinted that they have looked with interest at Jaeger and some of the other smaller city states they border.
Avalon: Is a major island trading nation in the west. It has several colonies in the east and a canny trading class backed by a strong military and naval power has made them the head of an alliance of western nations that have turned their face east.
They are ruled by a Queen backed by a parliament, made up of important guild figures and land owners.
Vallenstock: Is a vast country that spans the border between the “civilised” west and the deserts of the central east. It is a country torn by revolution that is now run by a “Council of Citizens” though many of the “Old School” Nobility still hold high positions in the military and the government. They are expansionist and forceful in their “diplomatic” position.
The Pirate Fort: Is a strange broken-down building standing forlorn in the trade waters that sweep the trade ships out of the west into the colonies of the east. It was an Avalonian fort, but the difficulties of keeping a force there and the constant assault of pirates eventually meant that they withdrew and it is now run by a Governor as a bastion of freetrade. However, when last it was seen, people reported seeing a strange black smoke wreathing it and ships that come too close simply disappear.
Jaeger: Is a small country, similar to an eastern European city state. It is currently known for being at the forefront of post human alchemy; however, it is now very unstable as the ruling family has disintegrated due to inbreeding and an overburden of insanity. This has led to the army largely breaking up, including the infamous JaegerMonsters who have made a name for themselves travelling the world.
The Colonial Wastes: Several of the Middle West countries send their disreputable people further west: across an ocean, still fairly new, is a huge continent where the Western powers send criminals and vagrants, occasionally desperate settlers make the journey for themselves as the land across the ocean is vast, with unknown resources. There is little law, except for an informal Justice system of sheriffs that try to keep order, especially on north eastern coast, where criminals are sold as “indentured workers” to companies for mining and other dangerous trades.
The Free Cities: A group of islands, that house a series of city states that sell there services and there wares to the rest of the world. They are mercenary but republics and meritocracies with strong guild control.
Montaine: Is a large country famed for its farming and its artisans, a few years ago, it was involved in the forming of the “Alliance”, mostly by starting the “Great Western War” that made the “Alliance” seem so necessary.
Elba: is a small island nation. After the Great Western War tore a continent apart the victorious nations formed The Alliance to ensure peace and prosperity in its aftermath. Napoleon, leader of the vanquished army, was exiled to Elba and sentenced to imprisonment. Four years after his arrival upon the island Elba was attacked and Napoleon set free. Before The Alliance could react to news of his freedom Napoleon established himself as Emperor of Elba and set defences in place. The first Avalonian Frigate to make port in Elba was turned away (unharmed) and, ever since then, the fractious nature of the internal politics of The Alliance has prevented any move being made upon the island.
The Church of the Cog: Most of the large group of countries have some kind of connection to the Church. Their main tenants is that the creator made them in his image: as creators and that as the creator, they are hear to make things better. This is not a creator who cares for them, but rather an engineer who made them and left leaving them with the tools needed. Therefore, most Priests of the cog are scientists of one sort or another who are trying to make the world better... not always well...
The Nether Isles
Abstract: A country made up of 7 island states whose main priority is trade (not all of which is entirely legal / alliance approved, islands means lots of coast so opportunity for smugglers and fences for pirate goods.)
Although involved in the war, it was mainly in a weapon and tech supply capacity; with the occasional mercenary company. However due to it being the source of weapons it was the target of raids and proposition as each of the main sides jockeyed for control of this vital resource, leading to tension between the islands when at times they were effectively on opposite sides even though they never fought each other.
Its current relationship with the alliance is one of support without membership. Kind of like modern day Switzerland and the EU ; we’ll take the economic benefits but keep control of our own affairs thanks.
Due to the fact the Nether Isles is surrounded by the sea most characters will have a basic understanding of seafaring. Those from the main island of x will likely have some experience of airships though not necessarily first-hand (e.g. aware of basic principles of how they run and able to identify the colours of the primary world players) as this is the main trading post and where the majority of the air traffic is to be found. In fact the surrounding isles usually transport their goods to the main isle for sale (unless they come up with something particularly innovative they don’t want their rivals knowing about or if it’s the kind of trade that doesn’t involve tax).
Politeness and Social Norms
For a good idea, I would suggest “studying” Sharpe, Hornblower & for the Colonial Wastes Deadwood to get an idea of the style of game we are creating.