Mutant Pirates Shared Setting

Ahoy! Do you like the idea of swashbuckling pirates with mutant powers?

Would you like to write a work of interactive fiction that takes place in the same shared setting as others?

Plague victims have been quarantined on an abandoned penal colony island in the Americas. Those that the plague doesn’t kill are rendered bizarrely mutated, the mutations manifesting in strange physical abnormalities and otherworldly powers. It’s a world plundersome with story potential!

It’ll be the Comic Book Universe, Thieves’ World or Reality-on-the-Norm of the IF World. Are ye with us, matey?

I’ve created a shared design document that you can all edit. I’ve put up a bunch of categories and ideas to start us off. Let’s make this happen!

The aim is to flesh out a setting and some shared characters, in order to bring out the first anthology of games some time in 2012. Even if you don’t intend to write a game, setting ideas are more than welcome!

What if instead of a penal colony it was an actual port town, along the lines of Tortuga? That might open up the story possibilities a bit.

No interest at all in writing a game in such a setting, but if at least one game comes to pass, I’d be willing to donate some time to some cartography to help flesh out the feelies.

Possibly Relevant Examples of my Work: … 2270&qo=12 … 2270&qo=18 … 2270&qo=22

(Note: some are wallpapers and extra-dark on the left side to allow for icons)

I love those!

Good call George: I’d imagined somewhat of a shanty town, but if it was actually a fairly established pirate port at the point of setting that could allow for more stories, definitely. Actually, looking a Tortuga: the pirates there took a massive blow when sailing under a foreign sail was outlawed in the Caribbean. Perhaps, historically, the pirates would of held out longer if they’d have had mutant powers.

And those maps look fantastic, Ghalev, and such a feely would be super-appropriate to the setting.

Thanks :slight_smile: And yeah, the idea would be, if this setting takes off, I could make you guys a nice Map of the Game World sort of thing, which could then be referenced and expanded by authors, included with each game, etc.

Ahoy! This sounds great, I’m really curious to see what happens with this.

Hmm. I’m not sure if I’d make a game for this, but I’m always a sucker for collaborative design.

ChrisC, and anybody else - you don’t need to commit to anything to come and toss some ideas around.

The best way right now is to contribute to JJ’s google doc.


So is anybody working on this? Or does anybody want to? It’s certainly not too late to join in.

Joey, are you back from Greece yet?

Just got back this weekend. Got a few comp games on the burner but I’m still fired up about the Mutant Pirates setting. I’ve got some great ideas for a game- will make some additions to the doc hopefully a little later today.

Come to think of it, this has been dormant for quite a while. It will be good to get things active again.

You went to Greece, Joey? Well, now you’re back it will probably get more active.

Hmm… dunno how much I can contribute - not a lot of time, it seems - but I would definitely like to add some ideas. The original Tortuga was on the island of Haiti; seems like the right kind of place for an outbreak of mutant plague, for sure. For titles… how about “Tortuga’s Plague”? And to add more pirate lore, how about a sign of the plague being ‘the black mark’?

Cool, Welcome aboard, ArmanX - did you see the google doc?

Is anybody actually working on a story in this setting? I have one basically plotted out and started writing it (in inform7) but I’m currently working on other things.

JJ, how about you?

I’m not so sure about including Tortuga in the name, that was more of a reference than something that’s actually in the world. But that’s up for discussion I guess.

The “black mark” sounds good, maybe a bit generic, and why is it black?

I thought of trying to come up with some Latin or Greek for “changing” but “mutant” is just that… The Greek god Proteus is a god associated with water and shape shifting, that sounds pretty suitable, so maybe “protean” is a good word to throw in there to describe the plague? The protean plague? Proteus syndrome?

I did see the doc, and I’ll try to add to it - as soon as I get back to my desktop. Heh.
The Black Mark is traditioal pirate lore, mentioned in Treasure Island and ruined in the second (?) Pirates movie. It’s a ‘mark of death’. In Treasure Island, the recipient was given a piece of paper with a blotch of ink on it. In this story, it would make sense that anyone who gets infected with the plague would have some common symptom - a black mark on their body. People trying to keep it a secret might have it under hair, or just chop it off - better a hook than a black mark, eh?

I like Proteus Plague, and perhaps The Proteus Problem for a title?

Finally, while the map is invented, some places referenced should be real, like Tortuga. Certain locations are well-known in pirate lore, and thus by pirates. The locations don’t have to be accessible, but it would be good to tie them in.

Right, of course. Usually called black spot, I think?

Sure, that’s a good idea, to make that a mark on the body rather than on paper. I guess we haven’t really nailed the life cycle of this plague. I’m thinking some sort of phases where some are more infectious than others, maybe long dormant phases… So a black spot that never goes away is a good idea.

The permanent black spot idea is great because it thematically ties it to existing pirate lore, and allows neat story possibilities: you can tell a mutant by looking for their mark- even if they have no other noticeable indicators. Proteus Plague rolls off the tongue nicely in my best pirate accent.

(I’m still about: I’ve got some sketched ideas for a story- just got waylaid a bit with the Cover Stories comp)