Midnight 5th Edition

Tommy Brownell

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Story here.

Will not use the Genesys system, but will use the D&D 5e system.

Hopefully this is executed well, as I'm super excited about it.

Curious to see what kind of setting changes are made in light of the "Evil races are bad" push of the last several months. Especially since playable Orcs were a thing in the original setting (as full blown defectors of the shadow army), and humans were pretty shitty as many sold our their fellow humans to stay in power when Izrador took over. So hopefully the "feel" of the setting doesn't move much.

So far, though, this is the most exciting RPG news announcement I've seen in years. I don't like the 3.5 system, especially as a GM, but I enjoy running 5e just fine. I have ran a little Midnight with a Savage Worlds conversion, and it did work pretty great, though. In fact, the author of that conversion gave me full blessing to do the work to convert his work to SWADE and share it, I just haven't gotten started on that yet.
 

Y Mab Darogan

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I'd have probably given this a look in genesys but I have enough 5e settings. This is a good thing though as I understand it was quite popular amongst D&D fans.
 

CRKrueger

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Story here.

Will not use the Genesys system, but will use the D&D 5e system.

Hopefully this is executed well, as I'm super excited about it.

Curious to see what kind of setting changes are made in light of the "Evil races are bad" push of the last several months. Especially since playable Orcs were a thing in the original setting (as full blown defectors of the shadow army), and humans were pretty shitty as many sold our their fellow humans to stay in power when Izrador took over. So hopefully the "feel" of the setting doesn't move much.

So far, though, this is the most exciting RPG news announcement I've seen in years. I don't like the 3.5 system, especially as a GM, but I enjoy running 5e just fine. I have ran a little Midnight with a Savage Worlds conversion, and it did work pretty great, though. In fact, the author of that conversion gave me full blessing to do the work to convert his work to SWADE and share it, I just haven't gotten started on that yet.
Oh man, a sanitised Midnight, I hadn’t even thought of that, that would be terrible.
 

Tommy Brownell

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Oh man, a sanitised Midnight, I hadn’t even thought of that, that would be terrible.
Fingers crossed. I'll keep an eye on previews or, barring that, reviews. If need be, I still have my full 3rd edition line to adapt.
 

Brock Savage

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After reading the Wikipedia entry consider me interested. I am digging how it turns the boring vanilla Tolkien fantasy tropes into something interesting that makes my brain race with ideas. I am surprised I never heard of this before but maybe because it was produced for 3x, my least favorite edition.
 

sureshot

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I always like Midnight though one requires imo the right group as the background is pretty grim and dark. Think Sauron wins in lord of the rings and he is pretty much firmly in control. Not many groups interested playing that kind of campaign.
 

Tommy Brownell

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The beauty of it is that you can run it however you like. If I ran an extended campaign, it would be grimdark and stacked against the PCs, but there would be no inevitability. Easy enough to do since the 3e version had no metaplot, just the setting.
 

Brock Savage

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I always like Midnight though one requires imo the right group as the background is pretty grim and dark. Think Sauron wins in lord of the rings and he is pretty much firmly in control. Not many groups interested playing that kind of campaign.
My favorite RPG settings are darker, morally ambiguous ones. Especially ones in which the "bad guys" have an overwhelming advantage or have already won. With the tension/pacing managed through the injection of irony, dark humor, and moments of hope it can be a very rewarding campaign style. I see GMs get into trouble when they present these settings as a srs bzns 100% grimdark misery crawl at all times because you can't just keep increasing the tension in a game, it has to ebb and flow like any good film.
 

Tulpa Girl

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So what does the rules and/or setting have to offer beyond what you would have if you chose to evil-fy Greyhawk or Harn or (wait for it) Middle-Earth?
 

Ladybird

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Curious to see what kind of setting changes are made in light of the "Evil races are bad" push of the last several months. Especially since playable Orcs were a thing in the original setting (as full blown defectors of the shadow army), and humans were pretty shitty as many sold our their fellow humans to stay in power when Izrador took over. So hopefully the "feel" of the setting doesn't move much.
The complaints were about making things evil just because and relying on lazy stereotypes; if they're fleshed out as a culture and there's a logical explanation for things, should be fine.
 

Brock Savage

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The complaints were about making things evil just because and relying on lazy stereotypes; if they're fleshed out as a culture and there's a logical explanation for things, should be fine.
I haven't paid much attention to the "Evil races are bad" push because it sounds like a ridiculous non-issue but I can get behind smashing lazy stereotypes. Let's side aside terms like good and evil because I agree they are far too lazy and imprecise for a conversation approaching any kind of seriousness. On the other hand I don't see anything wrong with presenting races that are unambiguously inimical to mankind. I invoke a lot of Lovecraftian and Howardian tropes in my games. Deep ones and their spawn. Ape men. Snake Men. Daemons. Orcs as descendants of unholy union between man and swine-daemon. Perhaps the lack of deep rationalization doesn't bother me because all of these creatures are in some way alien and divorced from humanity whereas more traditional fantasy races are usually just humans in funny suits.
 
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Tommy Brownell

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So what does the rules and/or setting have to offer beyond what you would have if you chose to evil-fy Greyhawk or Harn or (wait for it) Middle-Earth?
Well, it is kind of an evil-fy of Middle Earth.

Some of the key bits to it are: Using magic is bad. That is, the bad guys literally have magical creatures that can sniff it out. So use it sparingly. Magic items were dialed way back, which seems insane in the 3e era. Instead, you may get *a* magic weapon that grows in power with your level. The other key thing is PCs had Heroic Paths...basically, they started manifesting abilities that made them stronger (spell like abilities and the like) to fight back against the darkness.

Setting-wise, it offers ditching the baggage that goes along with existing settings. You don't have to explain how Gandalf died or (insert Greyhawk NPC here) got corrupted.

I haven't paid much attention to the "Evil races are bad" push because it sounds like a ridiculous non-issue but I can get behind smashing lazy stereotypes. Let's side aside terms like good and evil because I agree they are far too lazy and imprecise for a conversation approaching any kind of seriousness. On the other hand I don't see anything wrong with presenting races that are unambiguously inimical to mankind. I invoke a lot of Lovecraftian and Howardian tropes in my games. Deep ones and their spawn. Ape men. Snake Men. Daemons. Orcs as descendants of unholy union between man and swine-daemon. Perhaps the lack of deep rationalization doesn't bother me because all of these creatures are in some way alien and divorced from humanity whereas more traditional fantasy races are usually just humans in funny suits.
Midnight breaks from the racial stuff a bit, and allows cross breeding only among certain races: Humans can't procreate with other humanoids. Elves and halflings can cross breed, and dwarves can cross breed with gnomes or orcs (but orcs and gnomes can't cross breed).

The complaints were about making things evil just because and relying on lazy stereotypes; if they're fleshed out as a culture and there's a logical explanation for things, should be fine.
"Fleshed out" and "logical" are always going to subjective in this regard, so I maintain only that Midnight had allowed for that nuance from the beginning, and I hope the feel of the setting doesn't change much.
 
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