Alternative history meta game ?

I'm big fan of alternative history discussions, you know, starting from a "what if" and create, along the posts, a common and vivid, yet strange world.

So i've been thinking for a long time in a set of rules to help people who are not used too, or bring more tools for structuring.

Basically my idea is about making the implicit explicit : building on existing practices on the forum

For exemple, the "Butterly effect"

1- Phase of agreement : All the social contract about what the participants are going to do. It include the kind (grade) of butterfly effect. they could also define it with numeric parameters

- First strengh (crush an ant vs kill Napoleon)
- Scale

2- Butterfly effect, as a tool in the game, could have a priority (before or after other rules) and a definite way to affect events.

For exemple :

- The more time passes, the more it spreads in terms of geographic scale
- The more time passes, the more the alea factor (chance, dice) can be important (on some events to define)

There could be other rules, like a way to absorb it (for exemple, if his effect is under a given level during a given period)

Thoughts ?


  • It seems that my english is too broken to be understandable.
    Or no one has already enjoyed making alternate timelines ?
  • Your English is fine. Nobody has any thoughts about this (yet).
  • :) fine. My bad for being impatient.

    I could not find anyone in the french gamer community so as there's a vivid practice on the english-speaking forum, i suppose(d) i will have more chances here.

    i think the game should also introduce "gamized epistemology". That mean, stealing from historians methodology.

  • edited April 2018
    I have some notes for an alternative history rpg in my desk drawer, too. It's a subject of some interest, surely.

    If you're approaching it as a collaborative writing project sort of game (as opposed to e.g. adventure game or other such thing), then perhaps looking at Microscope might prove useful; it's basically a ready-made game for doing precisely that.

    EDIT: For comparison's sake, my own game idea is less focused on jointly writing an alternate history and more on critical review and debate of ideas. The core concept is that there are player characters who are interdimensional explorer-historians enmeshed in a complex interplanetary war with Alien Space Bats [grin]. The key to this war is finding the ASBs by exploring alternate timelines and finding the ones where the flow of historical events is clearly controlled by alien intelligence. The GM knows which timelines are which, and the other players play to find out, using their own knowledge and certain game-mechanical tools in a scholastic war of information against an alien menace. Basically War of the Worlds for allohistorians.
  • yes i've been thinking about it. There surely ideas to steal, but it's quite different.

    What were the basic concept of your alternate history rpg ?
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