The culture of "Clovius"

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Re: The culture of "Clovius"

Postby Graybeard » September 17th, 2013, 4:58 pm

Thanks for the lead, JR. On looking at it, "Rallahiem" doesn't seem much like Clovius as I envision it. For one thing, you've described a place in the "wastes," maybe a degraded version of what's around Santuariel, rather than a cold but otherwise basically healthy mountain environment. For another, I don't see Clovius as being big enough to support a real criminal underclass -- maybe 50,000 people at most, enough for there to be significant bad actors if we want them, but not a full-blown criminal element. (OTOH, my paternal grandfather way-back-when was "part of a class who took whatever work was available and resorted to petty crime when hunger pains became too hard to bear," and that was in a much smaller town than Clovius ... but let's not go there. He wouldn't have had the same "opportunities" as Myra, anyway.) On balance it's probably best to leave Myra as a product of Rallahiem; there are undoubtedly many such places in the Northern Confederacy.

So back to Clovius.
Alberich wrote:Strongly suspicious of outsiders and used to extracting tolls or tribute from them; fond of strong drink. tribal tattoos, and gambling; ready to fight on points of honor.

I can buy into most of this. They wouldn't be that suspicious of outsiders, since the town's whole raison d'être is as a center of commerce, and that requires at least tolerable relations with traders, not all of them from town. I'd say "cautious" rather than "strongly suspicious," and I don't know that tolls/tribute are essential, but some method of separating visitors from their money is probably indicated. Strong drink is a given; every settlement on the frontier has that! :roll: Meh regarding tattoos (more likely to be associated with the outlying villages than inhabitants of Clovius itself, I think) and gambling, and as long as the "fight on points of honor" part stops well short of the lunacy of Goriel, we can probably work with it.

Two other thoughts. First, while not as oppressive toward women as Goriel, I suspect the setting might cause men to rather outnumber women -- which might have interesting consequences for the several female members of our crew. Agreed? Second, we still need to figure out the significance of Northern Confederacy weaponry to this place. I have a reason for that that will become clear as the thread progresses...
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Re: The culture of "Clovius"

Postby Alberich » September 17th, 2013, 5:35 pm

Graybeard wrote:Two other thoughts. First, while not as oppressive toward women as Goriel, I suspect the setting might cause men to rather outnumber women -- which might have interesting consequences for the several female members of our crew. Agreed? Second, we still need to figure out the significance of Northern Confederacy weaponry to this place. I have a reason for that that will become clear as the thread progresses...


's fine by me. A hundred years back in Alaska (and to a smaller extent even today) there was a noticeable male-female imbalance, leading to a famous saying for women in that state: "The odds are good...but the goods are odd." (In the pre-WWII era, it also meant that it was very rude to talk about prostitutes among the local dignitaries...because a fair number of them had married former prostitutes, not something you'd see in most of the world, where there were more women around...)

I don't see that the significance of firearms would be that complicated to work out - I'd figure they have guns and plenty of 'em to guard their concentrated wealth (mines, shipments of trade goods, etc.), as well as cultivating whatever wizards they have. And if they're worried about unexpected troll raids, the people living near the troll areas probably have lots of rifles behind the doors and "open carry." Given the size of trolls I'd expect people there to want some extra stopping power, so in those places I'd look for more carbines slung over the shoulder than handguns on the hip.

A possibly interesting question is what they use for law enforcement -- fantasy worlds tend to create "fantasy police" of one kind of another because the authors see them as part of the natural order. I could picture the Council having a smallish standing army to enforce its decrees (moral equivalent of the house-carls) and keeping the judicial system under its firm control (harkening back to their desire to prevent tribal prejudice from wrecking their justice system), but leaving most day-to-day enforcement to the local militia.
Last edited by Alberich on September 17th, 2013, 5:46 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: The culture of "Clovius"

Postby Graybeard » September 17th, 2013, 5:45 pm

Okay, then. Let's get on the road. There are still a couple of things to happen before Clovius itself...
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