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Yorutonne, City Of Trees $5.00
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Yorutonne, City Of Trees
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Yorutonne, City Of Trees
Publisher: Obsessive Compulsive Design
by Megan R. [Featured Reviewer]
Date Added: 02/18/2013 11:33:47

Whether you are looking for an entire campaign setting or just need a really intriguing city to drop into an exisiting world, this has plenty of potential to be developed into something quite epic. For this is a city in which the Great Game has been raised to an art form, indeed abstracted to create a game within a game - one for which the rules are presented in this product.

Yorutonne is a beautiful city with an uncommon number of trees found in its streets, hence the name 'City of Trees' that proud denizens have conferred upon it. It is most notable, however, for the way in which Guilds and other powerful groups manoeuvre constantly, jockeying for political advantage in a game that often turns deadly...

... a game which is mirrored in an actual board game, The Dragon, that is played almost obsessively by citizens at all levels of society. Should your players become interested, the rules for playing The Dragon are included in an appendix so that they too may have their characters chance their hand.

After an introduction and a bit of fiction that might be better in a clearer typeface, both prose and typeface settle down as the entire city is described, a wealth of detail that should let you run it as a location. We learn of the guilds, and the underbelly that services their needs for 'deniable services' to further their political ambitions. Herein lies the lifeblood of the city as an adventure location: here if you announce you are seeking Work, you may well find opportunity to provide such services for pay, something to enthrall those players who love intrigue or indeed wish to practise various nefarious talents from robbery to assassination or spying...

The entire city is run by the Guilds, hence the need for so much political activity. It is they who actually govern, not some noble nor elected representatives. Being merchantile, in the most part, it is no surprise that the legal system here is based around financial restitution - with enforced servitude your likely fate if you cannot pay. Of course, such political beings as the citizens of Yorutonne do not limit their manoeuvring to inter-Guild politics, there is plenty of rivalry within each Guild as well.

To support you in running all this, there are copious examples covering everything from internal Guild politics to the city-wide great game between the Guilds, including a neat codification that allows you to classify groups (or individuals) as empowered, emancipated or opressed and thus determine the schemes that they are likely to engage in and the aims and objectives that they seek to obtain by those schemes. Although this draws on the obSESSION ruleset, in particular the rules for Intellectual & Emotional Response, it is readily understandable and applicable whatever ruleset you happen to be using (even if you might have to abstract it rather more).

As Appendices, not only do you learn how to play The Dragon game, there's also a well-detailed inn - a good place to play it, as well as a place to seek Work. In your download, you also get a set of coloured maps of the city and environs, which includes The Dragon gameboard as well.

As a generic city whatever fantasy system you play this is a fine example, and one I am giving serious contemplation to using... and for groups who enjoy intrigue and skulduggery, espionage and double-dealing, this should prove a perfect forum in which to indulge their participation in the Great Game.

[5 of 5 Stars!]
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