Despite twenty years elapsing, one very strong theme which felt different and “new” which I picked up on and that drew me to the game was that of a nation uprooted. Its a theme I intend to hold onto in play (and in the players minds); that Ambrian’s are very much, beneath a faded veneer of past glory, a desperate refugee people. I intent to play down the idea they have in any way comfortably “settled”, giving the Ambrian territories beyond the capital a much more frontier feeling (reaching beyond the actual frontier itself).
“Adventurers” have always been rootless wanderers experiencing danger wherever they go; extending that feeling so that it is seen very much the norm – desperation in the psyche – rather then the exception, I hope to create an environment that facilitates the power struggles, dangerous fringes and the knife-edge theme of the game and draws the players in – also propelling them into the Davokar forests on the promise of that one big score that will set them up in the world (yet in doing so at a later date, create many more plot threads and introduce political intrigue as victims and investigators).
50 shades of drab
The gritty-grim colour scheme facilitates this atmosphere of desperation in the desperate foggy damp environment. Dyeing clothing in our own world was historically an expensive affection and I noticed within the artwork that in Ambrian culture, red dye appears mostly a noble or religious coloration (excluding the barbarians who no doubt have their own dyeing methods and sources), perhaps the “upwardly mobile” displaying the odd garment, fringe or trim.
Of course, if a distant barbarian tribe had access to such dyes, creating a trade link with them could be worth it’s its weight in gold?