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|08-26-2014, 11:27 AM||#1|
The Indian Alliance
The Indian Alliance - one of the largest and first formed union within the former US, formed by tribes of people with native Indian blood.
The Indian Alliance has been naturally formed by many tribes of descendants of the Indians which were almost completely vanished or assimilated during the Past Age. They believe that the Gods destroyed the invasive civilization of the Past Age to save their ancestors and bring them to the celestial world, that those of their ancestors who deserved it were taken to that world, and those who remained on Earth should live decently and with respect to the traditions of the tribes, and earn the right to be invited to the land of Gods. The Indian Alliance is based on the Toltecs’ traditions, and they’re generally very racist towards non-Indians. They allow slavery (in Toltec’s or Aztec’s style), but mostly don’t need it. They are relatively prosperous in the apocalypse, with a strong sense of cultural identity.
Centuries before the Past Age, during the European colonization of the Americas, the majority of the indigenous population was wiped out, and the survivors were forced to live on reservations by technically superior invaders. This country of colonist descendants was named, in the Past Age, the USA – and it became the most powerful nation on the world stage, which is why it was represented to a higher degree in the UG. By the time of the blossoming of the Past Age, when democracy and humanism were developed, the indigenous Native Americans had been almost completely wiped off the face of the Earth, and their traces remained only as history.
This resurrection of an almost vanished race was quite a surprise for the historians and anthropologists of the United Governments. It seemed unbelievable, but representatives of the Native American population had managed not only to survive the Reset, but decades later grouped together to form the prosperous highly-civilized society in the former North America (now East America) - the Indian Alliance. By 132 A.R. their descendants, the "Natives", dominate over the massive, relatively prosperous territories from the East coast to the borders of the Great Desert area.
The Natives believe that during the Reset, the Gods destroyed the invasive civilization of the Past Age to save their ancestors and bring them to the Celestial World, and that their ancestors who deserved it were taken to that world. And they believe that those who have remained on Earth should live with respect for the traditions of the tribes, so that they can earn the right to be invited to the land of Gods. Based on that principle, most of the tribes of Natives treat the majority of palefaces (which they call Survivors) as wild animals, barring them from the settlements of Natives. Beyond that, those rare palefaces who are lucky enough to find home or refuge within the territories of the Indian Alliance should keep in mind that possession of firearms is allowed for Natives only.
|07-30-2015, 02:40 AM||#2|
Wait... what? Indian Alliance? Why would the survivors of the Native American tribes call themselves the "Indian Alliance"? A vast majority of the people from these tribal cultures which currently exist within the U.S. (there's somewhere over 500 of these tribes) absolutely despises the word "Indian". Every single Native American that I've met didn't want to be called "Indian" at all. They wanted to be called by their first name and then (optionally) their native nation/tribe name like Shoshone, Pawnee, Sioux, Wichita, etc. It's absurd that all of the people from these nations (because they are in fact small separate nations) would want to be in any way associated with the word they hate so much. The problem is the U.S. government told them to just suck it up and deal with it. There's:
Indian health services.
Indian welfare acts.
The natives simply don't want to deal with all that paperwork so they did as they were told. They sucked it up and got used to it. It doesn't mean they like it. It means they are forced to tolerate it.
Obviously the first thing the Native Americans would do after the Reset is stop using the word "Indian" and start getting extremely pissed at any outsider who tries to use that word when talking or referring to them.
And what is with Natives talking about Gods? The Native Americans usually had just one God and plenty of "spirits". Because they have shamanistic and druidic beliefs, sometimes also having one God creator. Yes. One God Creator. Not Gods. Some tribes also had one "Good God" and one "Evil God". As far as I can remember from my classes on the indigenous people of the U.S. during American Studies there were no Native Nations/Tribes with large pantheons of deities. Usually just one or none. Sometimes two, but mostly it was “spirits”. So it would have been the wrath of the “spirits” that caused the Reset.
Slavery doesn't make much sense either. Why would Native Americans have Toltec style slavery (which wasn't the same kind of slavery as the American Colonists employed) to begin with? These are not just two, but multiple completely distinct nations. Native Americans hated slavery. Truth is many of the Native tribes "gave" more freedom to colonists they captured then their rulers. Especially to any women as many tribes had exceptional gender equality and some where even matriarchal in nature. Many of these captured “white ladies” suddenly realized their equal to the men and they could even get back to their former lives without a single problem at any moment. Guess what they chose? They chose to stay with those tribes. “White men” where also welcomed as tribe members if they proved themselves worthy. Most of the Native Nations were also extremely tolerant and stripped of any kind of racism. Come to think of thing they had no idea what racism was and today they hate racism just as much as they hate being called "Indians". Even the more aggressive tribes during colonial days and later America’s expansion period just wanted to protect their lands, sacred places and freedom.
As for those who actually used slavery is was farrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr from true American slavery. Natives used slaves as workers who would do some mundane tasks, they were treated with more dignity and never exploited to their limits - especially any wives/concubines. Some of the slaves could also join the tribe through a ritual. Of course I know that slaves and captives have sometimes been sacrificed or brutally killed – it is a historical fact, but in After Reset the native cultures/nations seem both extremely homogenized as if they were one entity and additionally demonized. I can understand how Native Americans would for example not allow outsiders to carry firearms, but a lot of the stuff written here seems completely out of place.
Last edited by Patrymir; 07-30-2015 at 03:16 AM.
|07-30-2015, 09:22 AM||#3|
Hi Patrymir. It is pleasant you treated that short text so deep. Let me give several comments on your reply without spoilers.
First and foremost, you should keep in mind those points:
- literary assumption feature (that is not a PhD anthropology dissertation despite it is bases on them);
- the target audience of the game is an average modern western life stile gamer of 21+ y.o. (if it would be "Shoshone, Pawnee, Sioux, Wichita, etc." that description obviously would be different);
- any religion and any society evolves through the time and events (the Apocalypses, the living "Gods", and other "miracles" are quite match the description of such "events");
- the Chapter One will describe the lifestyle of Natives from within with more details.
pigeon superstition" (read B.F. Skinner works for more).
|08-02-2015, 03:46 AM||#4|
And hello to you Mr Nixon. I haven't thought I'd live to see the day when another person like Brain Fargo would emerge from the ashes of the radioactive gaming industry to create a title that would capture (or rather try to capture since the game is still far from release) the feeling of the old Fallout games. After Reset has a brilliant setting and I hope any criticism I give will be exceptionally constructive.
I see it like this. You have a chance to do something both good (as in real life good) and at the same time add more things that will expand and improve AR.
For the purpose of this conversation let's keep the Toltecs and Natives separate. The game isn't out yet and it will be some time before it gets released correct? Which means there is still some time to make improvements and adjustments. It's up to you if you make them or not, but I can grantee that having more various and distinct cultures is good for any RPG. When you are putting various cultures together, homogenizing them and placing them in to this tight little box it's going to be extremely hard to expand them later.
The Toltecs (who also seem to represent the Aztecs and Mayans in AR) are absolutely the perfect "chosen people". Latin/Central American cultures where very similar, but also very different from their Northern Native American cousins. Large pantheons, bloody sacrifices, slavery and extremely violent rituals would make them a very unique and specific ethnic group. I can already imagine a mutated high priests standing on top of a stone temple where a sacrifice is being made. Holding a long dagger made out of bone and metal while carving out the heart of a mutated beast to consume it. This could be an entire new level of this belief which says that consuming the flesh of beasts and enemies can give you their strength and abilities. The blood could even flow through some special carvings on the sacrificial altar and then flow through some parts of the temple. This stuff just writes itself. Especially that these cultures where always known for praying to their Gods and Demons.
The problem starts with North American Natives. When you are referring to the targeted audience (21 years +) I have absolutely no idea which specific audience you are referring to. Perhaps mainly the U.S. audience? If the game is going to turn out not all that appealing then I guess you’d be right. Don’t be surprised how ever if you happen to find that post-apocalyptic games are especially loved and popular in Central and Eastern Europe. It’s something worth considering. Russia is a good example as it is also the birth place of Metro and a certain studio in Ukraine is working on their own similar project: http://novysoyuz.ru/
I’ll be brutally honest about this. If Native Americans are going to be as poorly designed as they are now you’ll squander immense amounts of potential. This group needs to be “believable” and I doubt anyone (with at least some knowledge of these cultures) would consider them to be “believable” at the moment. Sure most people in the U.S. don’t know jack shit about Native Americans, but the people who are outside of America, oh they will usually know a lot more. Yet that is not the point. The point is all of these Native Northern American tribes have a lot of rich and interesting lore that can contribute to AR - traditions, shamanistic rituals, spiritual views and a lot more. Homogenizing and demonizing the tribes will simply hurt the game which is something After Reset cannot afford the same way the Witcher series could not afford not being not based on the books and Polish lore and legends. Making the Native North Americans not only more true to their actual real life counterparts is good even for every American who knows nothing about the Natives. Why? Because it’s interesting and it can be used as a source of inspiration for future work. It opens so many doors that you can even tie many tribes to the aliens. Now ask yourself this:
If you were a black person in a post-apocalyptic U.S. which exists in a parallel universe where slavery was never abolished would you want to create a new nation called the “Spook Alliance”? Or the “Nig-nog Alliance”?
Because the word “Indian” for Native Americans is something like a racial slur just like that. Or would you perhaps want to be a part of the “Cracker Alliance”? Or the “Gringo Group”? Do you see where I’m going with this? The “Indian Alliance” is an absurd name. It makes the world a lot less believable and immersive. Even more so if the native cultures are changed to become more Aztec like despite the fact that so many Northern Native Americans have done everything in their power to preserve their spiritual beliefs and customs. Even if only 100 of the tribes survived or less than 60 the diversity in their cultures, way of life and beliefs would still be quite noticeable and yet still have certain characteristics (like the belief in spirits) which bind them. It doesn’t matter if most of them would have been “pure” or not because this knowledge is passed down from one generation to another no matter if you are less native or not. This is exactly what builds a good RPG world. It also opens multiple doors for things like political unrest, internal strife and wars just like the American Civil war. Since these people are united through a council of elders wouldn’t it mean they form the Native version of the U.S.A.?
If this game is done right I would even part with my very own RPG system which is done in the same fashion as C.L.A.S.S.I.C. and S.P.E.C.I.A.L. only to have this title improved even further. Sadly AR is at a crossroads. Plenty of good ideas mixed with some… not too good ideas. Mistakes were made and if things keep up more mistakes will be made. I’m here just to see if I can affect this project in a constructive way. I want to see it crush trash like Fallout 3 and Fallout 4. Those might be fine games as far as game play goes, but because of the horrid writing and complete disregard for the lore from FO 1 & 2 I just feel disgusted by them. I want a REAL successor to Fallout and this game might just be that game. So trust me. You can come up with something a lot better than the “Indian Alliance” for the Natives and I can always suggest something if the need arises. There are things that can be improved, new names added and once the people start seeing how new and fresh After Reset feels that kickstater will be overflowing with backers!
Last edited by Patrymir; 08-02-2015 at 03:37 PM.
|08-02-2015, 08:44 PM||#5|
the hard sci-fi setting of the AR; but it is a huge world and there's always blind spots).
Initially I spent about a month studying the history of the Native Americans (or just "people", like they called themselves in their many languages and dialects). However that turned out not very useful for the Natives of the AR. Let's see that from the point of view of modern average commoner:
- first, by the 2100+ A.D. there's almost no "pure NA" rest in the AR setting;
- second, during the Reset majority human population on the surface was perished and the majority of those who left was gone during the Hurricanes Days (first decade after the Reset that erased the remnants of the the human civilization above the surface... something like you can reed in "Damnation Alley" by Roger Zelazny);
- third, by 100 A.R there's almost no technology/knowledge and history of the Past Age left on the surface (you can watch what would happen with all human achievements in 100+ years, even without the Apocalypses, in that "Life After People" tv-series of the History Channel).
The questions of that average erudite commoner will be:
- how did "pure NA" ever emerge in AR world?
- how do they even cold know their "traditions" if there's no source of it remained?
- how did they manage to populate and take over the first large Yellow Zones?
All those questions you'll be able to ask the Natives yourself in the After Reset RPG, I believe. And with your help they are rising by the new:
- why, damn, they called themselves "Indian" Alliance? Why not "Native Alliance" or just the "Alliance"?
- why they speak English and only special "caste" of them speak Thanil language (proto-Olmec languge in the AR... nowadays, the actual ethno-linguistic affiliation of the Olmec remains unknown).
So, please, feel free to add to that question you're curious about.
that ("retro vision") but it is that one (despite it is the "modern vision", you can get I'm inclining to).
And I suppose, there's not enough people on the whole surface to form smth. like the USA. And there'are not so many Yellow Zones available to sustain life as well. The same reasons why the New Confederacy in the game is also called Confederate Cities of America (CCA). "Cities", not "States".
Hmm... but you know... You've put an interesting idea into my head. There's no agreement of opinions in any human culture/religion/society. So yes, there are several tribes who deny "the Gods" (they regard them as a spirits), technology (because the majority of the Natives likes the technology like Arabians during the Islamic Golden Age), they don't believe in "the imaginary land of Gods", etc. If we get enough funding for the Chapter 1, I think, we should add that "radical" group's settlement as well.
By the end of the reply, I'd like to post a quote, the dialogue between Jack and Morningstar (from "Jack of Shadows" , a novel written by Roger Zelazny):
"You were both correct," said Morningstar. "It is the same thing that you both describe, although neither of you sees it as it really is. Each of you colors reality in keeping with your means of controlling it. For if it is uncontrollable, you fear it. Sometimes then, you color it incomprehensible. In your case, a machine; in theirs, a demon."
"The stars I know to be the houses of spirits and deities-some friendly, some unfriendly and many not caring. All are near at hand and can be reached. They will respond when properly invoked. Yet the daysiders say that they are vast distances away and that there is no intelligence there. Again...?"
"It is again but two ways of regarding reality, both of them correct."
"If there can be two ways, may there not be a third? Or a fourth? Or as many as there are people, for that matter?"
"Yes," said Morningstar.
"Then which one is correct?"
"They all are."
|08-05-2015, 03:59 PM||#6|
I can probably already guess what kind of answers to my questions I'll get, so instead of asking about them in detail I'll just say that I'll be looking forward to seeing how things turn out. I'm certain there will also be several surprises and I don't want to spoil anything.
As for the mistakes I mentioned earlier I think you should do a video the same way Brian Fargo did when starting his kickstarter:
A 5-6 minute long introduction video with some humor that will catch the attention of the gamers. Now I know this is a new IP and the team working on it has very little or no experience with the creation of PC games, but that can be fixed with gameplay. No tech demos (that already cost you a lot of negative feedback). This has to be something exciting like combat and an introduction to the world but the combat (which will be a big part of the game) has to be innovative, crisp, fluid and fun. At the very least it has to be a real time version of XCOM 2. The only way to do a good impression on the gamer community now is to create a self contained quest with 2-3 (small/medium sized) areas and make it available for everyone who wants to play it. When you achieve that there is no way you could not get crowd funded enough to complete this game. I could talk to you more in depth about the innovative combat elements but only in private. It's not like the competition should be reading this. I'm currently pretty busy with my master's thesis yet I should have enough time write down all the elements.
Last edited by Patrymir; 08-07-2015 at 12:20 AM.