Friday, October 21, 2016

Challenge of the Star Knights: The Basics

The Elevator Pitch
In the distant future you play students at the lowest ranked Star Knight academy who discover the secrets of their order and the threat that will soon come to the universe.

Expanded Concept
Ten thousand years ago, during the fourth extinction war the three ancient peoples formed an alliance to drive back the forces of the Maggedon, servants of the unmaker. Through their unity and the creation of the legendary Star Knights, the drove back the forces of the Maggedon and saved the universe. Their legend grows with every telling, though few believe in any of them. The Star Knights yet survive,  though the ancient technologies have long been lost. They still uphold justice and peace as best they can with what they have left.

Now we stand on the precipice of the fifth extinction war and once more the Star Knights are needed. The forces of the unmaker on on the move once more. Only those trained in the methods of the Star Knights, those who can use the techniques and technologies of the Elder Peoples, can save the galaxy from annihilation.

You are students of the Delta Academy, one of the fifteen Star Knight Academies spread across the cosmos. The academies train students in the use of Ikhai(inner breath) to awaken the soul and power the ancient technologies and techniques passed down by the elder peoples.  Delta is the lowest ranked academy, filled with those applicants who were too poor or not good enough to get into the other academies. Delta Academy sits on the edge of the Marconi Traverse, a vast mineral poor area of lawless space.

Only one percent of applicants make it to becoming a full star knight, most fall by the wayside. But even a failed knight applicant is a skilled and knowledgeable person. Many go on to be quite famous and influential in the galaxy at large. All those who pass the challenge become something more, a Star Knight, defender of the Galaxy.

Things that inspired me.

Voltron: Legendary Defender: OMG so good, also it had a huge influence for how I see the technology working and how I see the force of the Maggedon working. I especially like the evil space druids who give the evil forces their power. I really want evil space druids...or something.
Titan AE: Mostly for the visuals and the idea that the earth was blown up. The movie itself is sort of all over the place and not very well written.
The Last Starfighter: This whole project sort of stemmed from my desire to see the first class of new Starfighters being trained by the last remaining.
Mass Effect: The SPECTRs and Reapers are very close to how I see the Star Knights and the Maggedon operating in the wider universe.
Star Wars: specifically Rebels and the Young Jedi Knights series of books, I like the whole kids who have powers and must be trained in responsible use.
Lexx: Mostly for His Shadow and the Insects. Though the Time Prophet is cool too.
the Deathstalker Series of novels: I find the series immensely entertaining and I love the Madness Maze, and other things like that.
Harry Potter: specifically Hogwarts as a concept where kids go off to learn strange abilities with the hopes of becoming meaningful contributors to society.
Metroid Series: The universe is so interesting and Samus is just the coolest character ever. She was the inspiration for a lot of the technology I picture for the setting.
Phantasy Star Online Series: I really like the look and feel of the games.
Hunter x Hunter: I really love this show, I only recently discovered it, and I think it is fantastic. It makes the characters look for solutions that are more complex than mere direct action. It shows them succeed and fail, but they earn their successes and failures.
Naruto: the ninja schools and the Chunin exams specifically interested me when looking for inspiration. Although the character of Naruto is also inspirational as the guy no one thought would amount to anything.
Legion of Superheroes: Super powered teens saving the day in space. Yup.
The Bad News Bears: I love me a tale of the lovable losers finally doing well.
The Goonies: Lovable losers must find an ancient treasure to save their home. Set it in space and you have the elevator pitch really.

This is to be a game, and as such I need to decide on a system. Of late I have become more and ore fond of the D6 System. It has been used for a lot of great games(Ghostbusters, Star Wars, Metabarons, and Men In Black). I will be making some modifications to the system as I go along, as there are a number of things I would like to see changed from past experience playing the game. Most notably I want to change how character points work in play, but I will get into that as we go. The D6 system was the first game system I played in my youth. I was introduced to RPGs through the Star Wars Role Playing Game. It was very fun, Ewoks in Airspeeders kind of fun.

Much of my focus when designing the mechanics will have to focus around teh technologies of the setting and the use of Ikhai to do amazing things. It is a bit like the force but more expansive and less mystical. I am still toying with what it can and can't do, but I was heavily influence with how Nen works in Hunter x Hunter, so I am likely to do something along those lines.  I want the system to be diverse and yet not over take the whole game. I have a couple of ideas on how that will work, though I am not sure if they are simple enough to suit me. We shall see.

That is the pitch, I will be digging into this more in future posts and nailing down the mechanics and the setting in a lot more detail . What do you think? Let me know. I am always interested in comments, concerns, and critiques.