Print Progress, London
2 months ago
– Tue, Mar 12, 2019 at 01:08:19 PM
It's time for an update on print progress. Work continues on the print on demand versions, trying to get something without glitches. We'll get there soon! But while I'm wrestling with that, I have exciting news for backers at the £50 and upwards levels....the books at those levels will come from a print run, and will not be print on demand. This will ensure better quality, which will truly do Jason's art justice.
I'm really excited by this development.
Of course, Liminal isn't over with the main book- far from it. We have supplements. I'm in the process of doing some layout on another case note, but the first major supplement is Neil Gow's Pax Londinium: Liminal London. It's a big city and a big subject, making the book twice as big as originally promised, being 20,000 words rather than 10,000. I'm really excited to get this out there, and Neil has been part of Liminal since I announced it.
One thing I like is how Neil's really drilled into London's themes. To see how, here's an extract from the book. And why the title Pax Londinium? I'm very glad you asked...I'll let Neil tell you that too.
* * *
When exploring London as a setting for Liminal, it could default to a rather generic urban setting, with the odd landmark thrown in to remind everyone that it is in London and not, say, Manchester or Glasgow. There are, however, some themes that you can incorporate into your games that will make your version of Liminal London resonate with the reality and folklore of the place itself.
1. London is both a huge city and a smaller one
The wider area of London – Greater London – is massive and constitutes a goodly percentage of the United Kingdom’s population and economic power. There are hundreds of decent sized communities that would consider themselves as living in London without being in, or near, The City of London, which is quite a small area of central London. The area that we tend to see in movies and TV is quite small and the landmarks come thick and fast as you walk through the streets. In game terms, you can frame your cases around central London and hit those named places everyone is familiar with, but there is a world beyond that which is the home to the people who live and work in London and many of the capital’s thriving international communities.
2. London is a multicultural city
London is the most diverse city in the United Kingdom and hosts millions of tourists from around the world every year. As a result, if you want to mirror the reality of London in your game you should ensure that your NPCs embrace that diversity. Even your bystanders in central London are as likely to be European students on a college trip to England as they are British citizens. This diversity is reflected in food, music, fashion and other cultural offerings.
* * *
Minority Communities in London: The largest minority communities in London are, in alphabetical order: Bangladeshi, Chinese, German, Ghanaian, Greek, Indian, Irish, Jamaican, Japanese, Korean, Lithuanian, Nigerian, Pakistani, Polish and Turkish.
* * *
3. London is a city in motion (but not always quickly…)
London is an exceptionally busy city. Above ground, double decker buses and the legendary London Black Cabs jostle with cars, limos and delivery couriers on pushbikes and mopeds. Under the city, the London Underground passes through miles of tunnels that criss-cross the capitol, with more modern light railway systems joining as you get further from the centre. There are also millions of pedestrians moving through the city each day. A Liminal London that echoes this will have bustling crowds and packed streets – with car chases often being exceptionally difficult due to the busy roads.
4. London wears its history on its sleeve
One of the most striking things about London is the constant juxtaposition of cutting edge modern architecture and ancient churches and other buildings. The city has churches dotted all over the place, sometimes in a street between two modern glass-clad office buildings. The city itself has been all but destroyed twice; once during the Great Fire and once during the Blitz, and this shows in the variations in architecture and design. Games set in Liminal London can make great use of this – you are never too far away from some stunning modernity or a sunken and hidden crypt.
5. London is a city of the hidden
There is a saying in Britain that you are never more than 20 feet away from a rat – well, in Liminal London, you are never more than 20 feet away from some aspect of the Hidden World. This is never truer than when you go below the city and venture underground. The city has an underground vascular system of tunnels, tube tracks and sewers connecting all manner of gathering places. To guard against the ravages of the Second World War and the Cold War, the city has a number of disused bunkers and abandoned command centres.
* * *
There are eight abandoned deep level shelters; Chancery Lane, Clapham South, Clapham Common, Clapham North, Stockwell, Goodge Street, Camden Town and Belsize Park.
* * *
Beneath London are a myriad of crypts holding the bodies of the earliest, or most famous, dead of the city. Famously, catacombs under Camden Market were once used as part of a horse market and are still used that way, during nights of the fullest moon, by the Fae when they bring forth their faerie steeds to sell off to the highest bidder. The city has a number of rivers, tributaries of the Thames, that are lost to the surface world but continue to flow under and through the city; The Effra, the Fleet, Earl’s Sluice, the Neckinger, the Tyburn, the Walbrook and the Westbourne. Many of these are not traversable by mortals but can be used by the Fae to move effortlessly around the city.
London is an ancient city that has been virtually destroyed twice – once in the Great Fire of London and again in the Blitz during World War II. Many of the Liminal beings in the city trace their roots back to one or both incidents and they have become sensitive to this happening again. Moreover, the city is positively packed with Liminal beings, ghosts, fallen gods and goddesses and all manner of other beings.
The mayhem of Liminal London came to a head when a rogue weathermonger cast a spell that backfired and resulted in the Great Smog of 1952. The factions in the city met, within the court of the Queen of Hyde Park, and the Pax Londinium was agreed by all parties involved. This treaty creates a boundary along the Thames. To the north of the Thames, the Liminal beings are free to live, act and plot as they see fit. To the south of the Thames, however, Liminal activity is to be kept to a minimum. It is confined to those who are tied to this area, such as ghosts, and those few Liminals who gain permission to pass ‘south of the river.’
The Pax Londinium is actively maintained by several factions:
- The Knowledge monitor who is travelling south of the Thames. If you are refused transit ‘south of the river’ by a black cab, they almost certainly suspect you are breaking the Pax.
- The Trolls of the Duchess of Bridges will stop Liminals from crossing bridges and tunnels physically, unless they are accompanied by one of the Hidden.
- P Division will strongly suggest that those who would set up operations across the Thames should reconsider their actions.
Should a Liminal insist on operating south of the Thames and manage to avoid the Trolls, they will be actively monitored by the South Side Guild of the Mercury Collegium and members of both the Order of St Bede and the Open Knot. Both groups have active branches in the area, linked to several churches and mosques. If Liminals appear to be interfering with mortal life, or starting a conflict within the Liminal community, they will be removed. If the Collegium do it, they will be escorted forcibly back over the bridge. If the Order or their allies are involved, things might be deadlier.