Aborigines and Hawaiians in RPGs

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I cannot find ANY. Can you? Seriously, someone has to have created some content based on these cultures somewhere, but I have not been able to find anything. I want to have some tribes in my campaign based on the cultures of Australia and Polynesia, but I don't know enough to do it from scratch...
Mechanically I don't see these tribal people being any different than normal humans. You can make new backgrounds or themes to fit the tribal life.
I'm strictly 3.X, but I have looked at Al-Qadim and Maztica and Nyambe and always wondered why so much of the world is still unloved by RPGs. Things are improving thanks to settings like these but D&D is still heavily Euro-centric...
Aboriginal Australia

I can tell you that despite claims of 50,000 years of indigenous occupation they are more rescent than 10,000 years - and speak a sub dialect of Indoeuropean like pretty much every culture in the world. Some of the Northern Coastal tribes have Islamic influences in language and culture - in particular an Aboriginal Assassin known as the Kadaicha man who would take chewings from the heart of termite mounds and powder (this is not a poison it is a kind of glass so no save vs poison) them down into a fine dust the equivalent of powdered glass and blow it in someones face while they breath in sleeping - they would them bleed to death on the inside over many days and weeks. This assassin wears emu feather boots to distract and confuse 'trackers'.

Earlier Humans would have perished due to Megafauna (giant animals/crocodiles that climb trees). There was at some point between first Humans in Australia and the Indoeuropean Aboriginals a colossal Drought where the Simpson desert that is currently two thousand miles from the coast was all the way out to the Coast and the tribes sought food in a coastal setting near natural springs isolated around the coast.

Culturally Aboriginal Women are not Warriors. They are Food Gatherers.

Prestiege Classes
Both are Age Based - and drawn from the Geriatricy - a governing class of elders: The Kaidaicha might be called on to assassinate a young Powerful Warrior who challenges the elders authority or does harm to elders or rapes and uses culturally destructive behaviour.



  • Kaidaicha - (Nature Lore-termites) Like a spiritual Assassin

  • Tracker (Tracking) Like a Ranger except they could track an ant across a rock.



Technology
Where the first humans in Australia(50,000BC-20,000BC) had stone age tools, the indoeurpopean indigenous(10,000BC-5,000BC) had wooden weapons and Fire as a tool for chopping down a tree or curing large bark sections for use as canoes.
The Citadel Megadungeon: http://yellowdingosappendix.blogspot.com.au/2012/08/the-citadel-mega-dungeon-now-with-room.html
I like the kadaicha idea, I'll have to work on that. I've been working on cleric variant based on the Mendoo kit for the Wallara, but if that's been done already I would like to know...
The chief problem with representing stone age cultures is that their lack of access to metal equipment tends to make them ineffective at the martial classes - how good is a fighter who can't use a sword and chain mail?  Answer, not very.

Also, they generally prefer being called "indigenous Australians", "aborigines" is a bit out of date and sometimes offensive. 
The chief problem with representing stone age cultures is that their lack of access to metal equipment tends to make them ineffective at the martial classes - how good is a fighter who can't use a sword and chain mail?  Answer, not very. 



Oddly enough they do have representations of combat techniques against superiorly armed foes - the Use of Fear tactics in combat. A Warrior named Nemaluk and his band were on the run from police across the NT. They came up on the Police hunting them and threw Spears made from hollowed Bamboo logs which make a freaky noise as they sail through the air scaring off their horses and spooking the **** out of the coppers. This use of fear is a common theme in combat methodology. From 'Pointing the Bone' which is kind of a 'curse' to Poisons like termite mound chewings...its all about superstition and fear and the use of that in psychological warfare.

In the Japanese - The Samurai which when translated into the 5000BC Indoeuropean refers to Sa-Mu-Rei (to satisfy-mimic inarticulate sounds - to scrape/scratch/cut) which is a primitive concept in using psycological warfare in breaking the will of an opponent.

So there are examples.


Also, they generally prefer being called "indigenous Australians", "aborigines" is a bit out of date and sometimes offensive. 

Potentially but considering Aboriginal is by definition 'a person born in this land' it should be just as offensive to those who are not considered indigenous australians - even though they were born there as well.

The Citadel Megadungeon: http://yellowdingosappendix.blogspot.com.au/2012/08/the-citadel-mega-dungeon-now-with-room.html
Beware pseudohistory and the like.

... Indoeuropean?

The aborigenals languages have NO ties to ANY known languages. And they are the oldest separated communauty of humans by now. 

And Japanese have not a lot of ties to IE languages. Samurai is closer to the Han's language - it means 'he who serve' if I remember well.

And there is no 'islamic influences', nothing deep anyway. EVEN in Tores Straight islanders (another group of native peoples, not related directly to Aborigenals - more to natives of the malay islands).

You have some good points, but errors.

I may not be an 'aussie', but I follow well the AH.com and aussies and historians as well. 

Go at AH.com for infos by example and how to make alternate history-like stuff.  (Alternate history in the sense of 'what if', not pseudo sciences.)
Beware pseudohistory and the like.

... Indoeuropean?

The aborigenals languages have NO ties to ANY known languages. And they are the oldest separated communauty of humans by now. 

And Japanese have not a lot of ties to IE languages. Samurai is closer to the Han's language - it means 'he who serve' if I remember well.

And there is no 'islamic influences', nothing deep anyway. EVEN in Tores Straight islanders (another group of native peoples, not related directly to Aborigenals - more to natives of the malay islands).

You have some good points, but errors.

I may not be an 'aussie', but I follow well the AH.com and aussies and historians as well. 

Go at AH.com for infos by example and how to make alternate history-like stuff.  (Alternate history in the sense of 'what if', not pseudo sciences.)



Dude - I have Aboriginal relatives - they use Indo european fragments in their language all the time - the language has indoeuropean roots. They all do - despite 'the accepted version of history'. Indo european is at least 20,000 years old. More importantly They have mortar and Pestle technology and three stages of stone axe implements (the stone age cycles are represented al the way to the neolithic where we have a primitive edge tool - which was invented during the very beginning of the Indoeuropean cycle and spread from there on a global scale. That aint psudoscience - its real. Just because we dont conform to the official version of history - doenst make it false.
The Citadel Megadungeon: http://yellowdingosappendix.blogspot.com.au/2012/08/the-citadel-mega-dungeon-now-with-room.html
Dude, there is NO indoeuropean links beyond english and such from colonials.

Indoeuropeans are a newcommer of the world compared to their ancestors, -3000. You bring vaguely white powerish thing and you are supposed to be part aborigenals? 

The aborigenals had not an huge amount of techs, and where neolithic peoples. There is a possibility that they lost - unadapted - techs, like the examples of Torres Straight peoples and Tasmanians. (That don't make them 'primitives', but adapted survivors.)

History is a science - and pseudohistorical stuff like afrocentrism will not help the oppressed peoples. False history is NOT empowering.

Real history, real facts. To claim that 'official' X is lie is a sign of such pseudosciences.
Beware pseudohistory and the like....



Definitely!

It's a slippery slope, and we've got to nip it in the bud before it gets out of hand. 

Next thing you know, they'll start trying to mix other bits of pseudoscience into our fantasy role-playing games, like thinly-veiled racism, weird notions about the Noble Savage, crystal power, magic, faith-healing, alchemy, crypto-zoology, ESP, fortune-telling, ghosts, aliens, snake-oil, the Classical Elements, naturopathy, intelligent design, and that sort of balderdash!

I hope we all do our part to keep D&D free of pseudoscience.



Chainmail Bikini
D&D:  Presenting a historically-accurate
picture of Dark Ages Europe since 1974.




(Personally, I find the idea of Iron-Age islander cultures erecting mysterious monoliths and fighting sea serpents and Dreamtime monsters rather intriguing....)
[spoiler New DM Tips]
  • Trying to solve out-of-game problems (like cheating, bad attitudes, or poor sportsmanship) with in-game solutions will almost always result in failure, and will probably make matters worse.
  • Gun Safety Rule #5: Never point the gun at anything you don't intend to destroy. (Never introduce a character, PC, NPC, Villain, or fate of the world into even the possibility of a deadly combat or other dangerous situation, unless you are prepared to destroy it instantly and completely forever.)
  • Know your group's character sheets, and check them over carefully. You don't want surprises, but, more importantly, they are a gold mine of ideas!
  • "If it ain't broke, don't fix it." It's a problem if the players aren't having fun and it interferes with a DM's ability to run the game effectively; if it's not a problem, 'fixing' at best does little to help, and at worst causes problems that didn't exist before.
  • "Hulk Smash" characters are a bad match for open-ended exploration in crowds of civilians; get them out of civilization where they can break things and kill monsters in peace.
  • Success is not necessarily the same thing as killing an opponent. Failure is not necessarily the same thing as dying.
  • Failure is always an option. And it's a fine option, too, as long as failure is interesting, entertaining, and fun!
[/spoiler] The New DM's Group Horror in RPGs "This is exactly what the Leprechauns want you to believe!" - Merb101 "Broken or not, unbalanced or not, if something seems to be preventing the game from being enjoyable, something has to give: either that thing, or other aspects of the game, or your idea of what's enjoyable." - Centauri
Beware pseudohistory and the like....



Definitely!

It's a slippery slope, and we've got to nip it in the bud before it gets out of hand. 

Next thing you know, they'll start trying to mix other bits of pseudoscience into our fantasy role-playing games, like thinly-veiled racism, weird notions about the Noble Savage, crystal power, magic, faith-healing, alchemy, crypto-zoology, ESP, fortune-telling, ghosts, aliens, snake-oil, the Classical Elements, naturopathy, intelligent design, and that sort of balderdash!

I hope we all do our part to keep D&D free of pseudoscience.



Chainmail Bikini
D&D:  Presenting a historically-accurate
picture of Dark Ages Europe since 1974.




(Personally, I find the idea of Iron-Age islander cultures erecting mysterious monoliths and fighting sea serpents and Dreamtime monsters rather intriguing....)



Snarky in the best sense of the word... I just crunchy bits that help add a cultural flavour. So feats, spells, variant classes, prestige classes, and magic items that are based on the history and folklores of these different peoples. Where is the alternative to Maztica, Al-Qadim, and Nyambe for the Hawaiians, Australian native tribes, and other people left out of the game?
Guilty as charged

(Although, I hope it didn't come across as mean-spirited.  What I mean is, relax, and play with it a bit - it's OK to get a little fantasy in your fantasy setting )

Actually, I started to post a reply to this thread earlier this week that mentioned Al-Qadim and Oriental Adventures as "Hollywood Theme-Park Versions" of those cultures which provide quite entertaining fantasy settings for D&D - the point would have been to not let historical accuracy get you too wound up, it's entertaining stories that count.  I never got around to posting it, but I still have it open in a window on my desktop.

In fact, that was part of the point I was going to make in that post that never got posted:  that you don't see much available for a setting like the one described in the original post only because there isn't a lot of fantasy literature out there for it at the moment (at least, not a lot that's well-known.) 

We've got Tolkein and Conan and the Brothers Grimm and Canterbury tales and King Arther and Robin Hood and lots of other literature to go to for a setting loosely inspired by a pseudo-Dark Ages Fantasy Europe.  There's a little literature out there in the form of the Arabian Nights and the Sinbad the Sailor movies to go to for pseudo-Arabian fantasy middle-east.  There's Kwaidan and Yokai and Samurai and Kung-fu movies to go to for generic Feudal Asian-flavored fantasy.  There's lots of Greco-Roman mythology and films to go to for sword-and-sandal fantasy inspired by that setting. 

But, for a really exotic setting like something from Africa, the pre-colonial Americas, and Australia and the Pacific Islands, you are currently going to have to do the hard work of building an imaginative fantasy world based on them yourself (who knows?  Maybe these are niche settings waiting for a creative author to start creating the next big thing that will be copied by decades of fantasy authors and rpg and video game makers - and that author could be you!)
[spoiler New DM Tips]
  • Trying to solve out-of-game problems (like cheating, bad attitudes, or poor sportsmanship) with in-game solutions will almost always result in failure, and will probably make matters worse.
  • Gun Safety Rule #5: Never point the gun at anything you don't intend to destroy. (Never introduce a character, PC, NPC, Villain, or fate of the world into even the possibility of a deadly combat or other dangerous situation, unless you are prepared to destroy it instantly and completely forever.)
  • Know your group's character sheets, and check them over carefully. You don't want surprises, but, more importantly, they are a gold mine of ideas!
  • "If it ain't broke, don't fix it." It's a problem if the players aren't having fun and it interferes with a DM's ability to run the game effectively; if it's not a problem, 'fixing' at best does little to help, and at worst causes problems that didn't exist before.
  • "Hulk Smash" characters are a bad match for open-ended exploration in crowds of civilians; get them out of civilization where they can break things and kill monsters in peace.
  • Success is not necessarily the same thing as killing an opponent. Failure is not necessarily the same thing as dying.
  • Failure is always an option. And it's a fine option, too, as long as failure is interesting, entertaining, and fun!
[/spoiler] The New DM's Group Horror in RPGs "This is exactly what the Leprechauns want you to believe!" - Merb101 "Broken or not, unbalanced or not, if something seems to be preventing the game from being enjoyable, something has to give: either that thing, or other aspects of the game, or your idea of what's enjoyable." - Centauri
No offence kept, BUT...

You do realise there is ways that bad 'world building' stuff as this can get weird, or worse, like offensive?

I don't want to sound pedant, but there is still issues like aboriginal rights in Australia that are still indeed sore wounds, and if I like - I LOVE - to play with history, we should be warry of what we use around peoples who are STILL oppressed or screwed generally by history, rights and all.


To say 'but this is a GAME, of FANTASY man, don't be so serious/pedant/etc' is deamining(is that the word?) and wrong - this is a bad excuse to let stuff like sexist or other prejudices bits in, potentially (like horrendously cliché arborigens or chainmail bikinis bimbos by example). OR just use our game in a  mature, deeper and more responsible way. It's why Astrid's parlor was created back in the way - no, it is more than a game.

FIRST if you wish to use something like the Aborigenals of Australia I say, get REAL, SOLID facts. THEN build, twist, change, mix, etc things around. It is how it works at alternate histoiry, the best.
Like, that said, maybe the 'west' or 'east' or whatever of your world had earlier contacts with those nations. Cultural exchanges, religious conversions maybe, and so on. 
Dude, there is NO indoeuropean links beyond english and such from colonials.



Indoeuropean was spoken between 50,000 years and 5,000 years - the Kurgans the last in Europe to speak it.

Aborignial Australian Languages are an Indoeuropean variant:  www.booksie.com/non-fiction/miscellaneou...


Indigenous Word-------------------------------Translation------------Indoeuropean Comparison

WAKANARA (Tasmanian): Absence, (Wa-Ka-) meaning: {to bend apart-to like,desire} as a word it means a feeling or sensation of separation thus the word ABSENCE.

Not indoeuropean? Think again.


The Citadel Megadungeon: http://yellowdingosappendix.blogspot.com.au/2012/08/the-citadel-mega-dungeon-now-with-room.html
Unhuman Enemies of the Indigenous Australians

Doolargul: These are considered 'apemen' like the yowie. In the Indoeuropean it is (deu - ol - arg - ul)  meaning to burn - to destroy -shining - red; This 'arg-ul' is used to refer to shining red eyes - The 'Red Eyes' who must be destroyed by Fire. So its not really what they call themselves.
The Citadel Megadungeon: http://yellowdingosappendix.blogspot.com.au/2012/08/the-citadel-mega-dungeon-now-with-room.html
No offence kept, BUT...

You do realise there is ways that bad 'world building' stuff as this can get weird, or worse, like offensive?

I don't want to sound pedant, but there is still issues like aboriginal rights in Australia that are still indeed sore wounds, and if I like - I LOVE - to play with history, we should be warry of what we use around peoples who are STILL oppressed or screwed generally by history, rights and all.


To say 'but this is a GAME, of FANTASY man, don't be so serious/pedant/etc' is deamining(is that the word?) and wrong - this is a bad excuse to let stuff like sexist or other prejudices bits in, potentially (like horrendously cliché arborigens or chainmail bikinis bimbos by example). OR just use our game in a  mature, deeper and more responsible way. It's why Astrid's parlor was created back in the way - no, it is more than a game.

FIRST if you wish to use something like the Aborigenals of Australia I say, get REAL, SOLID facts. THEN build, twist, change, mix, etc things around. It is how it works at alternate histoiry, the best.
Like, that said, maybe the 'west' or 'east' or whatever of your world had earlier contacts with those nations. Cultural exchanges, religious conversions maybe, and so on. 




Pedantic?  No, not at all.

I do think that you clearly feel strongly about this, and believe in what you are doing, and that's a good thing.

But, on the other hand, it's like the line from the song from Mystery Science Theater 3000:

If you're wondering how he eats and breathes
And other science facts,
Just repeat to yourself "It's just a show,
I should really just relax!"

(Edit to add:  That's not to say that your game setting should be like one of the bad movies from MST3K, and that your audience should just give up - far from it, I hope that all of us as setting and campaign designers aim much higher than that!  However, technical accuracy and realism is not going to make a bad movie better, and many good movies are about as far removed from accuracy and realism as you can get... those films work in spite of their flaws because they are well-meaning and fun, and the same will hold true of your game setting.)


For the original poster, your "Hawaiians" and "Aboriginals" are Human Fighters, Human Druids, Human Sorcerors, Human Commoners, Human Necromancers, Human Experts, and Human heroes, supporting cast, and villains.  Human, with human weaknesses, human strengths, and all the resourcefulness, courage, and variety of human beings - remember that first, it's really the most important key to treating your subject with respect in a game of D&D.  After that, I think the rest will fall into place naturally.

Beyond that, you will make hardly anyone happy by being historically accurate in a game of D&D.  The Chainmail Bikini is as popular today as it ever was in the 1970's not because it was realistic, but because it never fails to capture players' imaginations, and it seems that the further away from reality it is, the better it works.

The essential skeleton of D&D is, first and formost, a hero in a well-defined area, with a sharp stick, preparing to poke a cool monster with it, while a tangible reward waits nearby.

Define what it is about the pre-colonial Pacific Islands and Australia that captures your imagination, distill that, and then apply the spirit of whatever captures your imagination to the skeleton of D&D, and you've got a winning combination.
[spoiler New DM Tips]
  • Trying to solve out-of-game problems (like cheating, bad attitudes, or poor sportsmanship) with in-game solutions will almost always result in failure, and will probably make matters worse.
  • Gun Safety Rule #5: Never point the gun at anything you don't intend to destroy. (Never introduce a character, PC, NPC, Villain, or fate of the world into even the possibility of a deadly combat or other dangerous situation, unless you are prepared to destroy it instantly and completely forever.)
  • Know your group's character sheets, and check them over carefully. You don't want surprises, but, more importantly, they are a gold mine of ideas!
  • "If it ain't broke, don't fix it." It's a problem if the players aren't having fun and it interferes with a DM's ability to run the game effectively; if it's not a problem, 'fixing' at best does little to help, and at worst causes problems that didn't exist before.
  • "Hulk Smash" characters are a bad match for open-ended exploration in crowds of civilians; get them out of civilization where they can break things and kill monsters in peace.
  • Success is not necessarily the same thing as killing an opponent. Failure is not necessarily the same thing as dying.
  • Failure is always an option. And it's a fine option, too, as long as failure is interesting, entertaining, and fun!
[/spoiler] The New DM's Group Horror in RPGs "This is exactly what the Leprechauns want you to believe!" - Merb101 "Broken or not, unbalanced or not, if something seems to be preventing the game from being enjoyable, something has to give: either that thing, or other aspects of the game, or your idea of what's enjoyable." - Centauri