___ Blows against the Empire. Martial arts fantasy. Run in GURPS.
The armies of the king of Qin are threatening all the other kingdoms with conquest—but defenders of freedom have sprung up to resist him. Player characters will be knightly warriors, masters of mysterious elemental powers, and practitioners of advanced science and technology in an alternative early China where Taoist natural philosophy is scientifically accurate. Play will focus on action and adventure, cinematically presented, but will be framed in Chinese cultural and ethical ideas of the Superior Man (or Woman). Mechanics will include the material I worked out for GURPS Thaumatology: Chinese Elemental Powers—which I hope will be out by the time the campaign starts!
___ Eloi. Near future social science fiction. Run in GURPS. Source material: Transhuman Space and its supplements.
Set in Transhuman Space, in a Fifth Wave nation, probably English-speaking. Player characters will be Eloi: people who have been successful enough economically to live on their investments and work only for personal satisfaction. Play will focus on social interaction on scales ranging from personal relationships to large-scale memetic campaigns, but centering on community identity and reputation. Secondarily, these relationships will be used as a perspective through which to explore the Transhuman Space setting.
___ Fronteira. Naturalist science fiction. Run in GURPS.
In the mid-23rd century, humanity has colonized and begun terraforming Mars. Player characters will be residents of one of Mars’s largest cities, at the base of the orbital elevator on Pavonis Mons, built and operated by a Brazilian megacorporation. All characters will be human colonists with no more than minor genetic or cybernetic upgrades; the setting will be somewhat conservative technologically, with no prospect of a Singularity. Play will not be scenario-based but will make up one continuing storyline, exploring the physical and cultural setting and the relationships among the characters as they work to survive, prosper, and cope with emergencies in a sometimes lethally hostile environment.
___ Shadowlands. Postapocalyptic dark fantasy/horror. Run in Big Eyes, Small Mouth or classic World of Darkness.
Technology is failing and the world is reverting to preindustrial conditions, as magic returns. Player characters will be residents of a small city or large town that’s struggling to adapt to the change and to a variety of weirdnesses—probably a college town, but there won’t be an academic focus. Characters will have the option of learning some forms of magic, but the use of magic will be inherently perilous, and will expose them to suspicious from the unmagical. Scenarios will be driven partly by the effort to survive and partly by mystical threats.
___ Tapestry. Historical fantasy. Run in Big Eyes, Small Mouth or GURPS.
Set in a GM-defined fantasy world inhabited by a number of intelligent humanoid races, each with its own magical style, culture, and preferred habitat. Technology will be mainly bronze age; magical traditions will be largely spirit-based. Player characters can belong to any race, or can be of mixed ancestry, though hybrids are rare and often sterile. The point of departure will be one of the world’s first cities, from which player characters will go out on quests, which they should be competent and motivated to undertake. The main focus will be on exploration, encounters with other races and cultures, and magical traditions.
___ World Class. Superhero drama. Run in Marvel Heroic Roleplaying. Source material: The Avengers, Captain America: The First Avenger, Iron Man I–III, Thor.
Player characters will be original superheroes, perhaps the only ones in the world and certainly among the first to appear. Character concepts should be suitable for group or team efforts but need not preclude disagreement and character conflict; the ethical abstraction that a character embodies will be as important as their powers or skills. Players will have a substantial role in defining the campaign setting, by establishing supporting casts, because the sources of their special abilities will define the possibilities for other superbeings, and because their character concepts—which need not follow the traditional formula—will define what it means to be a “superhero” in this world. There will be a lot of action, but the campaign will also look at investigation, political and cultural influence, and interpersonal relationships.