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Folklore and Fantasy, Far and Wide

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This topic contains 4 replies, has 3 voices, and was last updated by  horati0nosebl0wer 6 months, 2 weeks ago.

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    History, what stories we leave behind and the physical relics to show we were here. Why do we value it? The dichotomy of past/future thinking and our transience of being at present. What makes cultures of oral tradition different from those of physical records? Technology allows the absence of a human being to tell the story and the eternal outside the self. Why is this important to wargaming? It impacts the way we represent humanity in conflict on the gaming table. Why post here instead of historicals? Personal bias in thinking there’s a stodginess and hyperfocus on recreating events as history instead of thinking in terms of folklore and beginning fresh slate in moving about tiny fighting men without expectation.

    Without some sort of physical reminder of being from the past that can be experienced in the present the “before self time” does not exist. It is likely the reason there is little in the way we have figures for cultures of geographic regions without written or physically recorded history. Here is where I think the folklore of culture can be made useful for “open source mini usage” (keeping our resident ‘Justin and Dragons’ artist from conniptions). Saga has become my go to in order to explore histories and cultures with folklore that can seem weird and wild as Other to my known ones.

    Its interesting to look at how we meet technology (as figures), with game systems (non lethal conflict), and come up with various motifs for our theaters of the mind with cultures that are known with recorded history. I’d say I’m blind to wargame clubbing in other languages from not having that knowledge but do non Anglophones in S. America, Africa and Asia have active/vibrant communities that we just don’t see? What kind of figures can we see from them? My curiosity is peaked and does anyone else find interest there?


    Cult of Games Member

    I too feel like most of the hobby is Old World (aka Europe) and semi  modern. But how was conflict in the time 2000 B.C. to 1000 A.D. in (for example) Australia? Japan? China? India? Different regions of Africa south of the lands on the shores of the Mediterranean sea?


    I got to thinking about that and it all depends on technology. I want to try and keep cultural flair as unique and individual as possible. Finding Zulu and Indian figures en masse was easy. The main problem I find, for the sake of immersion, is firearms. The same issue is present when I dug into pulling up Maori warrior forces.

    Far east Asian conflict of the Koryo under the Choseon dynasty against the Chinese (Yin dynasty?) included gunpowder, but it was appropriate for the age and culture. I’d see no issue with Warring States period Chinese kingdoms breaking out rockets for their war machine in the same way the Romans might “Rain Hell” with scorpions or onager. The opening of ‘Gladiator’ might could only be better as a game of SAGA Age of Magic if there was a dire boar for the Gaulish forces and perhaps a gryphon for those of Rome.

    I’ve only seen one KS for Slavic folklore and there’s something to explore more of. A Babylonian could easily be hashed out with Chaos dwarves but also some more mystery monsters from mythology. Mythic Americas and another company Gerry covered take a look at more that could offer great fun in getting out of The Old Worlde.

    @lloyd How’re those Pagan Rus coming along for SAGA? Would you toss in a Baba Yaga hut and Baba Yaga herself for Age of Magic?




    humm, Baba Yaga for Age of Magic I hadn’t actually considered that.

    Some quick googling

    That could be a cool way to play Age of Magic, instead of going full fantasy keep the regular saga armies but introduce their folklore for the magic – nice.


    Good find for Baba Yaga. Those are very much in the spirit of the stories. You’ve got the idea on where my brain was headed.

    The real divide between fantasy and the sword/board historicals is some loudmouth waving their fingers and muttering odd sounds that might well be taken as insults and rude gestures to the gods. On top of that there are those weird things that keep eating the occasional negligent handler, which the royalty assured the generals wouldn’t happen… often, that come in as monsters.

    Pull in the stories of cultures that you play with on another level beyond just the tabletop.

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