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SWADEadlands and the Morgana Effect

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  • SWADEadlands and the Morgana Effect

    I just read about this in the recent update. It's going to mean a lot of changes in the setting.... For my own game, I said that although the north had stronger industry and science, the south countered with magic. When the war seemed to be lost, they cast a spell together with the Voodoo practitioners in New Orleans to raise many of the dead soldiers in the south (from both the Union and Confederacy) under their control. This was done in exchange for giving New Orleans to the Voodoo leaders. All the undead were under southern control, but the spell did not allow them to cross over into the north, so the war became a stalemate. The North decided they no longer wanted to be reunited with the necromancing southerners, so they pulled their troops home and the war was thus over (for now at least).

    It sounds like the whole Morgana Effect is going to change all that. I could still do a much lesser version, but it would not affect the result of the war. That makes me sad, in a way.

    Anyone else going to have their game worlds upset by the coming changes? I'm still looking forward to it, I might say that all that still happened, but then the coming of Morgan Le Fay took so much magical energy it ended the reaising of the dead, and the north then re-invaded and won.

  • #2
    Your version of the setting is already so different from the original that I really don't get why you're even worried about any changes. I mean, you already altered the setting's metaplot pretty drastically yourself, so it really wouldn't make any difference to just keep doing what you're doing for your own games and ignore the Morgana Effect entirely. There's a good chance official material wouldn't fit your game anymore with or without the changes caused by the Morgana Effect, so why even bother trying to incorporate it? Just keep playing in your own alternate timeline and adapt any new material you might want to use to it - as you probably would have to anyway.
    Last edited by Augusto Antunes; 11-08-2019, 03:01 AM.
    "Did I fire six shots, or only five? Three? Seven. Whatever." - Unkempt Harold

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    • #3
      I have to admit that I find the fretting over the Confederacy's retcon in comparison to other retcons which have occurred in Deadlands' canon (notably a few of the Plot Point Campaigns) both tiresome and suspicious. While I can understand the concern over existing material, this worry is moot when you already have a different enough setting that it can't be retconned back so easily. Pretty much every gaming group I know of that used a dramatically altered setting finished up their existing games before "trying out" a newly released edition. The onerous task of refitting new rules and setting changes in the middle of their campaign was never a practical option.

      It's also a change for the best, as I discussed in the other Confederacy thread how it's jettisoning the greater legacy of whitewashing over a century's worth of racist propaganda.

      Edit: I'd also like to point out that the existence of black Vodoun spellcasters would be everything the Confederacy hates and fears: a magical religion with non-Abrahamic influence among the slave population would be viewed in much the same manner as handing out guns for free to African-Americans. It's something that almost never happened because it would so directly challenge the power structure of the Confederacy's values and feed into the widespread fears of Nat Turner-style rebellions.

      I understand that New Orleans has Vodoun influence and history, but it was always a bit of an outlier and was for a time staunchly pro-Union in recognition that the free people of color had it better than the rest of the South. Given that most non-Blessed spellcasters are looked down upon in Deadlands, the plantation owners are much more likely to turn to the dark magic of the Reckoners or some other source to keep hold of their society. This isn't far from the truth, in that a lot of the planter class knew on some level that the indignities forced upon slaves would earn them a trip to Hell but even so they refused to give up the power and privilege they had on this Earth.
      Last edited by Libertad!; 11-19-2019, 05:33 AM.

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      • #4
        I'm interested to see how they explain the West continuing to be splintered if the east has been re-unified, since in the real world, attention turned pretty heavily to westward expansion and control once the Civil War ended. I'm wondering if the story is going to focus on war between the reunited US and the new Sioux Nation in the northern Great Plains and the Coyote Confederation in the south-central Plains.

        I know the events of the end of Last Sons explains why there would still be a war going on there, which may be enough to stop the US armies cold in the northern plains, but you'd think that would just prompt them to head west through Texas. Maybe in the new plot, Mexico starts pushing north to reclaim that territory, so mass western expansion is limited by a combination of the Sioux Nations, the Coyote Confederation/Disputed Territory, and Mexico?

        Since the canonical ending of the Rail Wars goes through Deseret, it seems unlikely that the US is going to have the strength to challenge Wasatch and keep the intercontinental railroad, so I think Deseret is going to stay independent. Probably California too, though I could see that becoming a Chinese colony if the Shan Fan powers and Kwan can form a united front after the destruction of Lost Angels.

        Personally, I'm running The Flood now, so none of the PPCs have happened yet to my group. I'm modifying it to make the end of the Rail Wars uncertain, and from the way things are going now, it looks like Bayou Vermillion might win, which would give Simone LaCroix the money he needs to fund some bloody and violent uprisings as revenge for slavery in the South and in the Caribbean, and possibly create a (violent and vengeance-focused) all-black nation in that area.

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        • ValhallaGH
          ValhallaGH commented
          Editing a comment
          Probably the Great Rail Wars and a really bad version of Reconstruction.
          Read up the history of the end of Reconstruction some time. Two states had their entire elected governments murdered in a week, and the murders took over the offices like they had been properly elected. And the Feds let those terrorists win.

          Add supernatural influence, and you've got a recipe for ongoing violence, terror, and disunity.

      • #5
        If Dr. Hellstromme still has those ghostfire bombs which operate pretty much as primitive nukes, they can very much hold off a US invasion of Deseret. Of course there will still be attempts at more covert sabotage much like in the Cold War and such a dangerous device will spur on more anti-Mormon sentiment, but when your country has the power to irradiate an entire city with airships most will be reluctant to directly invade you.

        As for the Native American nations, in standard Deadlands their widespread use of magic was a great equalizer. While this runs into some "Magical Native American" tropes and unifies otherwise disparate indigenous religions and cultures, a truly United States can still have a lot on its plate (like Reconstruction) and the Sioux Nations and Coyote Confederation may have enough staying power to fend them off.

        Fun fact: the Sioux held off to patches of autonomous land from US invasion longer than even the Confederacy. Arcane Background Shamanism (and possible aid from the Mormons like Hellstromme in Last Sons) may extend the autonomy of these lands even further.
        Last edited by Libertad!; 11-19-2019, 05:34 AM.

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