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“It is 1935, and everything’s changed.
Sure, sure the Dust Bowl’s part of it. I ain’t pretendin’ that shit ain’t straight up apocalyptic, no matter what the white shirts say.
And yeah the Depression certainly got in on the action, but it ain’t exactly the cause, you know?
Radio is destroyin’ the universe.
Don’t look at me like I’m crazy! Makes perfect sense.
For years you got the white shirts keepin’ time with nice boring music. Approved music. I ain’t sayin’ that everything was all churchin’ all the time, but they got enough of the action to keep things runnin’ smoothly. All of a sudden we got radio croppin’ up, and ever since what have we got? Chaos. Pure and total shit.
Whole world went to war. Flu tried to kill us all. Our money ain’t worth a damn. And now the earth itself is tryin’ to choke us.
Balance has shifted. White shirts ain’t got a monopoly anymore.
Oh sure, life’s been alright for us so far. Good even. I know I’ve been rakin’ it in hand over fist, but what’re we lookin’ at here? What’s the end game? Cause Nick ain’t backin’ down anytime soon. He’s finally found his stride, and he’s singin’ loud and proud.
And the whole damn universe is fallin’ apart as a result.”
Musica Universalis is a single-weekend game set in an alternate world, where devils, angels, and the supernatural rub elbows with the mundane in dust bowl America. It is heavily influenced by alt country, bluegrass, and early blues. There is a whole list of other influences that hopefully evoke the idea we are going for.
Angels and Devils walk the earth. Maybe not every day, maybe not every place, but if you look hard enough you can see the evidence in places most mortals don’t bother (or can’t bear to) tread. But it goes deeper than just these visitors. The earth itself is a awash with former deities no longer able to muster enough worship to garner more than a spark of power (or maybe vice versa?), genius loci, fae, mortals who have gained control of some form of magic, and all manner of other things that go bump in the night. There are all sorts of phenomena if you look in the right places and kick over the right rocks. All sorts of magic. All sorts of songs…
Everything is not going smoothly, however. The unprecedented spread of popular music, brought about by leaps in technology, is having an effect on the universe itself, as the music of the spheres, which kept the universe operating according to the rules set forth by God, are being challenged for really the first time. This has had some understandably dire side effects.
The game will be centered on the the hangers on, wannabes, neutral parties, magically savvy mortals, unlucky souls, supernatural beings, and those with more than just human blood in their veins that make a living in the robust black market (in its long running iteration, a traveling circus currently meandering through the panhandle region) that serves as an illicit meeting place between the two divine sides, as well as the closest thing to neutral space the various ‘local’ power players have to meet. It is said that everyone who needs something badly enough, mortal or not, will eventually wind up at the market. As long as they leave their overt hostility at the door, they are welcome to take advantage of the trade of favors, items, powers, and songs that flows between all the interested parties. Divine wars are all well and good, but moral absolutes tend to break down once folks end up on earth, and everyone down here is looking to make a living. These individuals find themselves at the center of last ditch peace talks between the two divine sides, as a (close enough to) neutral third party, pressed into service as unlikely diplomats.
Our hope is to create a world steeped in music, not just in tradition and backstory, but one where players are encouraged to sing, perform, and enjoy music together throughout the weekend. Knowing how to read music or play an instrument is in no way required to play this game, but a love of music and a willingness to sing along with others is probably a plus.
(But seriously, don’t worry about sounding good. Enthusiasm is key here, not training!)
Musica Universalis will be a one shot, weekend long game, scheduled to run May 4th-6th, 2018 at Camp Brantwood in Greenfield, NH. This is a game that will focus more on roleplaying, characterization, and discussion over combat. We have been describing it as a theater-style game where the combat mechanic happens to be boffer combat (specifically the Accelerant rules set). Not all characters will be skilled in combat, nor does everyone need to fight.
Additionally, we are taking a bit of a different approach to this game than most Accelerant games. Players will not be creating their own characters. Instead, we will be pre-writing characters, and interested players will be asked to fill out a casting survey.
We hope you will join us in this musical journey, and encourage you to sign up for our mailing list if you would like to stay abreast of things.
We are looking for both players and NPCs!
Please take a look at the FAQ for further information
Please feel free to reach out to us with any questions at firstname.lastname@example.org
This site will be updated with more information about both game world and logistics as things unfold.
Interested in PCing? PLEASE NOTE: We are currently FULL for this game. You can feel free to fill out the survey in order to be added to the wait list, should you wish. Take the player interest poll Here, and sign up for the mailing list Here.
Want to help us out as an NPC? Sign up for that list Here.