[CSP1] - Building a World

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CSP1: The Story and Setting


Note: these is still an early stage project and details are subject to change.


Welcome to the first submission thread for the first Concept Set Project! You can see the genesis of the Project to its current state here and here.




Alright, so the only thing we know for sure is that the set will have one or more cards representing every creature type printed in magic so far, possibly with overlap. That means our world and story will have to be pretty odd.




I suppose me and MagicPablo666 are here to take suggestions and polish your ideas until we decide on however many final submissions we will take, then have everyone vote for their favorites. Hop to it!

Anyway, the story that popped in my head was:

For three millennia, the artificial wandering plane known as the ARC has drifted the multiverse, peeking in and out of planes, through time and space, searching for every last form of life ever to have evolved. Those species too long extinct or too rare to find by simple drifting, have been simulated using a long lost species known as the (are they really called the nameless race?), or created by shapeshifting technology and a lot of biomancy.

Okay now we choose our own adventure, because I can't quite decide on which path we want:

It's quest over, the ARC stops wandering after finding the recently released eldrazi (oh no!) Bad things happen, as a villainous walker takes over the ARC now that's it's original keeper is long dead, and causes havoc.

Eldrazi cause havoc with other huge beasts.

The arc expands into a fully sized plane, life evolves, beasts become sentient and civilization forms in  a matter of days. This set becomes a story of creation of a plane.

Could also be made by garruk in the future. His own personal beast hunting plane? Ha.

This is probably more of a worldbuilding idea than anything else.  Assuming we go with the "zoo" idea, perhaps each race is represented by the earliest known instance of that race.  For example, the human would be a neanderthal.  The addition of the class Aura (or Equipment) could indicate the evolution of that creature down a particular path.

Copy/Pasted from the SS:

The set. So I have some ideas. . .

NAME OF GUY is a planeswalker. He or she was once a passionate naturalist. I think the idea works better if it is a male, because he is about to get all kindsa dissheveled and fudged up - and call me old fashioned but I think men pull off that insane homeless person thing better - for one we grow beards and they can be great for storage when you don't have a house. I like female characters too. Maybe we can find one later? Anyway, tangent over. He loved collecting and studying the extremely unique flora and fauna on his home plane. Then, terrible things happen - the plane undergoes an Industrial Revolution that is like ours times a thousand. Extinction occurs rapidly and pretty soon the only non-sapient life on the plane is in his little conservatory or whatever. Already he has shed many tears for the industrial destruction of his plane, but now he is just holding on to what he can. At this point, ANOTHER CHARACTER knocks upon his front door. The character is malicious or evil or something and he or she has his or her cronies/subordinates/children begin to lay waste to the guy's flora and fauna. He his held back by still more c/s/c as he cries and suffers from the pain that this causes him, two things occur. One: He totally loses essential parts of his mind. Two: His spark ignites. He finds himself travelling across the aether and ends up on other planes. He wanders the multiverse for a while and eventually finds this completely empty plane. Lifeless I should say. There is water, wind, earth, but no other life. His mission is clear. He must collect flora and fauna from every part of the multiverse that he can.

Conflict I: I think that most sets should have a conflict of sorts so here are a couple. After several decades his creation becomes something that he cannot control. Seeing as he is a little nuts, he has actually transported other sapient beings here. They are fauna in his eyes, after all. These elves, goblins, humans, kithkin, etc. don't really appreciate this. Seeing as they cannot really escape, they do all in their power to destroy what NOG loves.

Conflict II: NOG's plane becomes noticed by other 'Walkers. They begin to understand how his work could be used for the purposes of death and destruction. Sort of: Oh yeah, this object is beautiful, but that guy wants to make it into a weapon. I think there are small organizations of 'Walkers and they could be part of this.

More ideas later. 

139359831 wrote:
That is a lovely painting of Richard Garfield. It really brings out his feminine side.
Anyway, the story that popped in my head was:

For three millennia, the artificial wandering plane known as the ARC has drifted the multiverse, peeking in and out of planes, through time and space, searching for every last form of life ever to have evolved. Those species too long extinct or too rare to find by simple drifting, have been simulated using a long lost species known as the (are they really called the nameless race?), or created by shapeshifting technology and a lot of biomancy.

Okay now we choose our own adventure, because I can't quite decide on which path we want:

It's quest over, the ARC stops wandering after finding the recently released eldrazi (oh no!) Bad things happen, as a villainous walker takes over the ARC now that's it's original keeper is long dead, and causes havoc.

Eldrazi cause havoc with other huge beasts.

The arc expands into a fully sized plane, life evolves, beasts become sentient and civilization forms in  a matter of days. This set becomes a story of creation of a plane.

Could also be made by garruk in the future. His own personal beast hunting plane? Ha.



My problem with this is that it doesn't account for the mechanical nature of the set. Why one of every type? If there is only to be one Eldrazi I don't think that we can demonstrate this conflict within cards. And what exactly is going on with ARC? Is it sapient?

139359831 wrote:
That is a lovely painting of Richard Garfield. It really brings out his feminine side.
All the cool kids are reposting their ideas:


...
Semi-seperately, the flavor could take place in the AEther, and you're just getting whiffs of spells as they pass by you on their way to being summoned on a plane. They're more ideas of a thing, rather than an actual thing. Ties in with the whole 'purest form' concept.

*shrug*

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All the cool kids are reposting their ideas:


...
Semi-seperately, the flavor could take place in the AEther, and you're just getting whiffs of spells as they pass by you on their way to being summoned on a plane. They're more ideas of a thing, rather than an actual thing. Ties in with the whole 'purest form' concept.

*shrug*



How do you have a plot in the Aether?

139359831 wrote:
That is a lovely painting of Richard Garfield. It really brings out his feminine side.
Noah's ark??  plane??
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We don't need as much plot as there is only one set. We can't have a big story or anything because we cant show change. I suppose we can try though.
Copy/Pasted from the SS:

The set. So I have some ideas. . .

Show
NAME OF GUY is a planeswalker. He or she was once a passionate naturalist. I think the idea works better if it is a male, because he is about to get all kindsa dissheveled and fudged up - and call me old fashioned but I think men pull off that insane homeless person thing better - for one we grow beards and they can be great for storage when you don't have a house. I like female characters too. Maybe we can find one later? Anyway, tangent over. He loved collecting and studying the extremely unique flora and fauna on his home plane. Then, terrible things happen - the plane undergoes an Industrial Revolution that is like ours times a thousand. Extinction occurs rapidly and pretty soon the only non-sapient life on the plane is in his little conservatory or whatever. Already he has shed many tears for the industrial destruction of his plane, but now he is just holding on to what he can. At this point, ANOTHER CHARACTER knocks upon his front door. The character is malicious or evil or something and he or she has his or her cronies/subordinates/children begin to lay waste to the guy's flora and fauna. He his held back by still more c/s/c as he cries and suffers from the pain that this causes him, two things occur. One: He totally loses essential parts of his mind. Two: His spark ignites. He finds himself travelling across the aether and ends up on other planes. He wanders the multiverse for a while and eventually finds this completely empty plane. Lifeless I should say. There is water, wind, earth, but no other life. His mission is clear. He must collect flora and fauna from every part of the multiverse that he can.

Conflict I: I think that most sets should have a conflict of sorts so here are a couple. After several decades his creation becomes something that he cannot control. Seeing as he is a little nuts, he has actually transported other sapient beings here. They are fauna in his eyes, after all. These elves, goblins, humans, kithkin, etc. don't really appreciate this. Seeing as they cannot really escape, they do all in their power to destroy what NOG loves.

Conflict II: NOG's plane becomes noticed by other 'Walkers. They begin to understand how his work could be used for the purposes of death and destruction. Sort of: Oh yeah, this object is beautiful, but that guy wants to make it into a weapon. I think there are small organizations of 'Walkers and they could be part of this.


More ideas later. 



I like this. I would make the person who ruined the first project be someone with a clear agenda and/or grudge against NOG. And then have him/her also be a walker, and be the one who shows up to mess up the second project as well.

Edit: Also, I think we should just name the main character Nog. 
When on the timeline would this take place?
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What about a world were thoughts become reality?  At some point in the past Experiment A went wrong.

Whatever an individual focuses hard enough on comes into reality.  Nightmare's roam the land, powerful people have learned to harness the abilities (flavor twist on Attended Knight/Lich Lord of Unx type abilities), a way of infusing mana into the ability happened (Shapeshifters).

Maybe even this plane created all the other planes?

Then: Insert whatever storyline/conflict you want...Kingdoms vie for power, Artifact that caused Experiment A being searched for...blah blah blah

All that aside, I like Pablo's idea too.
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I think everyone has similar ideas on this one with the whole emphasis on gathering in some way or another. This is what I remember posting in the previous thread (is it weird that'd I'd rather retype an entry than search, copy and paste?):

Aryana was a studious and generally curious planeswalker. She wasn't interested in power, or with commiseration between her equals and inferiors. She was a scientist at heart, plagued by the spark she couldn't understand, always looking for some test or examination or theory to help her grasp why this magical property should exist, and of all places within her. The multiverse was her field to study, the differing worlds her research focus. In an attempt to better catalog and understand the whole of existence, she created the plane of Zoonrada, a gathering point for specimens of every significant species to ever exist. What races she found, she captured individuals. What lifeforms no longer existed, she scoured the earth planes until some magical residue could be procured. The preserve was wonderous beyond imagination, a collection spanning beyond dimensions.

It has been many years Aryana was seen by anyone. Some think her dead. Others think worse. No matter her outcome, one thing is certain: Zoonrada is no longer under her control. Her magic is depleting, and as it does, the lifeforms of this world are no longer kept apart. What happens to a museum come to life?

Chaos.
The world of Asfex is a curious one, known as a true menagerie by all who have visited it. However, be careful to speak of its variety while on the plane. Pleasant reactions are hard to come by when discussing the rarity of a specie. Reminiscent of an erosion, the edges of the plane have been worn out by the tides of time. Left behind in the sand is only the refined aspects of creation, entities defined only by their single fragment of individuality. Creatures of this plane do not appear to be made out of love or compassion, only through ideas and concepts.

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Yes? No? Stop writing right now holy christ?

Yxoque wrote:
This forum can't even ****ing self-destruct properly.

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Hey!

I'm glad a couple of you like mine. Rush's seems pretty similar, except -dramatic entrance. But perhaps +dramatic re-entrance? Mown's world is quite poetic, but I feel it needs more backstory/explanation?

POS, that sounds like a cool Plane, but how does it tie in to the thematics of the set?

Keeper. Um. I don't think most of us know much about the timeline. Maybe you could give us your opinion on where you think this could fit, seeing as you probably know more than anyone else on this part of the forum.

Aaarrrgh: I had the same idea while writing that. Ha ha.

Chaos: Re: Plot - perhaps you're right, but maybe a snapshot of the conflict would be doable, if not a whole story. . . arc.

So, I hope that people are interested in critiquing the ideas on this thread in addition to posting their own. 

139359831 wrote:
That is a lovely painting of Richard Garfield. It really brings out his feminine side.
Hey!

I'm glad a couple of you like mine. Rush's seems pretty similar, except -dramatic entrance. But perhaps +dramatic re-entrance? Mown's world is quite poetic, but I feel it needs more backstory/explanation?

POS, that sounds like a cool Plane, but how does it tie in to the thematics of the set?

Keeper. Um. I don't think most of us know much about the timeline. Maybe you could give us your opinion on where you think this could fit, seeing as you probably know more than anyone else on this part of the forum.

Aaarrrgh: I had the same idea while writing that. Ha ha.

Chaos: Re: Plot - perhaps you're right, but maybe a snapshot of the conflict would be doable, if not a whole story. . . arc.

So, I hope that people are interested in critiquing the ideas on this thread in addition to posting their own. 




I think a bit of mix-and-match between Pablo's and Rush's stories would be the best option. 

@Mown: I really liked what you wrote, and I think we could fit in there somewhere, but I do, as mentioned, lean more towards Pablo and/or Rush.

Regarding timeline: Creating/populating a plane with a wide variety of creatures is definitely pre-mending walker territory. I would suggest that NOG/Aryana created the plane before the mending (perhaps long enough ago to pick up an Eldrazi spawn before Sorin & Co locked them up?), finished populating it slightly before the mending, and has been fighting a losing battle to keep in control of it ever since the mending cut his/her power down. Imagine spending thousands of years on a project, and just as you finish it, you lose your grip on it. I would imagine s/he is somewhere in the middle of the plane, desperately trying to save as much of it as possible, but growing weaker by the day.
The world is very old, seven times there have been mass extinction.
With each extinctions, diversity of species would come back greater for the space to  grow again
The spirit of life and endless lull among elves the drive to live ever moving
slowly life has become sentient and than found ways to shape itself...

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Real men hold shift. If everyone has their fingers in the pie, then someone is eating fingers.
My story is the most coherent.
Real men hold shift. If everyone has their fingers in the pie, then someone is eating fingers.
Lemme try to expand on Aaarrrg's talk of the Mending in case folks are unfamiliar with that.

The Mending is kind of the big before-and-after Infinite Crisis On Infinite Earths line in the sand for Magic. Before the Mending, Planeswalkers were a lot more powerful--they could reshape their bodies at will and drag creatures along with them through the Multiverse. After the Mending, 'Walkers became mortal, lost the ability to reshape themselves, and mostly lost the ability to drag creatures through the Blind Eternities. So anything that involves collecting creatures needs to be set pre-Mending OR make use of some sort of portal technology (there are portals between Rabiah, Jamuraa, and Wildfire, there's a portal underneath Castle Sengir to an unknown plane, I think Shandalar opened portals to planes it drifted near, and the Phyrexians traveled the Multiverse using Ambulator Portals--so all of that provides precedent of various sorts).

The Mending took place something like a century ago. So, anything set pre-Mending needs to account for that span of time.

Also, some creatures would only have been available recently. Eldrazi Spawn, most notably, although there was one brief period in the past when the Spawn were able to nearly break the three (THERE ARE ONLY THREE) Eldrazi Titans free of their prison. So, that'll affect things. I'm trying to think if there are other complications... Homarids might be a bit difficult to fit in, but not impossible. Any of the Shadow creatures WILL be hard to work with since their whole thing was their entrapment between Dominaria and Rath... I'm not sure how you'll work with that, because there's not a lot of information about what those races were like prior to their bifurcation across dimensions. Sliths seem to be native only to Mirrodin, and it's unclear whether any survived the Phyrexian takeover of the plane.

That's all that springs to mind right now.



Also, POSValkir's idea is cool and sidesteps a lot of these issues. 
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I think keeping it simple as possible may be the way to go. Every X eons or years, species from all the planes are gathered on a single location to duke it out. Perhaps just for the entertainment purposes of some rich jerk or some nutty planeswalker. I think the more sense you try to make of things, the more problems you create for this set. However, leaving a lot of the whys and hows as a mystery will make it more complex and compelling.

I also suggest the plane itself should be some type of creature (likely avatar). This could be represented in a land card, which I know is a lot of land, but I'll get into that more in a moment. Then there's the philosophy, if the land/creatre (or entire plane) is destroyed, doesn't that destroy all creatures and defeat the purpose? Well, another mystery that should be left unanswered as it's more fun to wonder about this scenario.

I figure the plane itself would be relatively small compared to other planes, and be likely a single chunk of land with large bodies of water and a large amount of sky. The area is finite, and it basically works Pac-man style where running to the edge leads you back to the other edge.  
Mussolini knew how to run a worldbuilding group.
Real men hold shift. If everyone has their fingers in the pie, then someone is eating fingers.
Anoter idea, someone was experimenting with changelings or the nameless race or some sort of shapeshifter and accidentally shattered it into 230whatever pieces reaking havoc on the plane. This technology is then later used on the plane where our story takes place, either to populate an empty plane or conquer it. Depending on how we want the story to go.
Kavu and Viashino are related vegetarian/carnivore dinosaur

president obombya speaks anger prejudice and a time for US foreign air strike while the US worries about its rights

Let 'em burn [Frozen Parody]
Kavu and Vishino are related vegetarian carnivore

No they aren't. Also this makes no sense.
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Kavu and Vishino are related vegetarian carnivore



Brilliant. So Let me see if I get what you're saying: Viashino and kavu breed, creating the ultimate vegetarian predator. This kashino army prceed to eat all the plant life in the multiverse, and thats where baby eldrazi titans come from when bolas uses the curse of the veil to eat karn's thumb.
they both have 3 chamber hearts like birds

president obombya speaks anger prejudice and a time for US foreign air strike while the US worries about its rights

Let 'em burn [Frozen Parody]
krark's thumbalina
Real men hold shift. If everyone has their fingers in the pie, then someone is eating fingers.
they both have 3 chamber hearts like birds



president obombya speaks anger prejudice and a time for US foreign air strike while the US worries about its rights

Let 'em burn [Frozen Parody]
Hey guys you know if you block Holck he's just sort of this anonymous thread bumper and becomes a lot more likable, mainly because you can't see what he's saying.

I thoroughly encourage it. 
Chaos. I like your latest idea. I'm also into post-mending stuff. Keeper, I think the portal use could be do-able. Maybe temporary portals of some sort? That's how I would justify NOG's actions.

Matt, I have a shrine in my closet to you made of bubblegum and hair and chips. 

139359831 wrote:
That is a lovely painting of Richard Garfield. It really brings out his feminine side.
chips stack so well

president obombya speaks anger prejudice and a time for US foreign air strike while the US worries about its rights

Let 'em burn [Frozen Parody]
Hey guys you know if you block Holck he's just sort of this anonymous thread bumper and becomes a lot more likable, mainly because you can't see what he's saying.

I thoroughly encourage it. 



He's amusing.
I try to be

it gives my life porpoise

president obombya speaks anger prejudice and a time for US foreign air strike while the US worries about its rights

Let 'em burn [Frozen Parody]
Wait, no, don't try to make jokes! It ruins it for me. Just let it flow from you like friggin' Qi or something.

139359831 wrote:
That is a lovely painting of Richard Garfield. It really brings out his feminine side.
it gives my life porpoise


That's unfair. I want porpoises too.

Anyway, on the topic of the world's creation: I would suggest not going with the whole "picking one of each" approach. Our creatures aren't legendary. There's more than one of them, they're just the singular expression of their race. There's probably more than one hawk, but it's just that one hawk, not other types of hawks. If we have the whole part where there's only one of each, it won't be consistent with common gamestates.

Also, I don't think it's important to explain just why the world is as it is. We just need a defined explanation of how it is. Some mystery has never hurt. I don't know if Lorwyn's aurora has any real explanation, or the Roil on Zendikar (Although I think the latter one has some real backing.) Some concept is good, but the entire lore of it isn't as important. imo

Yxoque wrote:
This forum can't even ****ing self-destruct properly.

IMAGE(http://img.pokemondb.net/sprites/black-white/anim/normal/plusle.gif)

Kavu and Vishino are related vegetarian carnivore



Brilliant. So Let me see if I get what you're saying: Viashino and kavu breed, creating the ultimate vegetarian predator. This kashino army prceed to eat all the plant life in the multiverse, and thats where baby eldrazi titans come from when bolas uses the curse of the veil to eat karn's thumb.

Chaos I am madly in lesbians with you.

@Mown:

The Aurora is caused by Oona's deliberate meddling with the normal day/night cycles of the plane in order to preserve her own dominating power over the plane.

The Roil is caused by Zendikar's adverse reaction to the presence of the Eldrazi. Think of it like antibodies... except that it's the entire fabric of the plane freaking out because it's got three beings that normally can't exist in Euclidean reality jammed into it.

I think without SOME explanation the plane would feel kinda... well... gimmicky.

@Pablo:

For the record, it's strongly implied that portal creation requires fairly advanced magic or artifice... or some sort of random natural occurrence, as with Shandalar, and the whirlwind portals that link Rabiah, Jamuura, and Wildfire.  Just something to consider with the portal thing.
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> If I recall, Lorwyn's Aurora was natural, the weird one that messed things up was due to the Mending. The Roil was because they put the Eldrazi in the ground.

>Mown has a point about "One of each!" not making sense with gameplay. People are bound to have multiples of a card.

>If we did use the "someone/a plane was collecting things", the Mending is a perfect explanation why things are going down the toilet. Urza could probably snag all the creatures no problem. Jace, less so. Heck, time rifts could explain away any odd creature types.
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I had always intended for there to be "more than one" of them, just...only one of each. Although this does depend on the mechanics discussion. Cause if we're going to see overlap with some races and class combinations or something...
Speaking of porpoise...

Do we want to invent more creature types? I know a plane of kangaroo-folk that looked promising....