Enchanted Realms Rulebook

 Complete Rules 
 Fantasy Setting Precis 
 Fantasy Setting Precis

Fantasy Setting Precis

“And I guess I've always enjoyed living in a fantasy world, daydreaming. I really do think that dreaming and fantasies are very important to the human psyche and the soul.” -James Duval

The setting of a fantasy work is often of great importance to the plot and characters of the story. Stories that use the setting as merely a backdrop for the story have been criticized for their failure to use it fully. This is why understanding why a fantasy world is different than one we live in. The characters in the story of Enchanted Realms will have different perspectives than we do here on Earth.

The world of Enchanted Realms is one of marvel and wonder. Magic flows through the air in this domain. Things ordinarily impossible on Earth happen here. That is an important factor to understand when playing the game.

As this tome is beginning to define more of the fantasy world, one should recognize some aspects of the design philosophy and acknowledge each table and each gaming group view things just a bit differently. There are many who believe that story-telling, defining tone and narrative to the game are more important elements than the numbers of stats, attributes or whatever the game system chooses to call them. Yes, the metrics of the numbers determine the odds of success or the amount of incoming trauma that one's character can withstand. Having those measurements allow for equal application to all players. That balances the fairness of the game by the mechanics of its system. All of that is good.

However, when players crunch those numbers, find the statistical advantages to maximize success and minimize threat all in the name of having a powerful character, this is when game designers and game masters begin to use the phrase “metagaming.” Now, to be fair, that is an oversimplified explanation. Players should pick skills and place attribute values to give themselves the best chances, but all that should be in the context of the character, not the player. Selecting skills at random or without choosing those that help a character reach his or her goals is just silly and would ruin the enjoyment of the game. On the other extreme of the silliness and destroyed fun are the players who pick skills for the sole purpose of padding the systemic numbers used in the system without regard to why a character would make that choice.

One of the ways to combat this is to better understand the chimerics of the world. In some ways, one might think that only empowers the mim-maxer. However, when the whole table understand the rules and how a fantasy world function, not just the natural laws but from a societal perspective and from the perspective of the organizations involved, it helps to keeps such players in check and called out for selfish behavior.

Much still have to be enforced by the GM. If in the story a player's character joins a guild, church, or perhaps a cult to gain access to learning specific skills, there is often an agreement and expectation of behavior that goes along with the benefit of being able to train in those skills. Often GMs know the loopholes of the system and create cultural and in-story protections to prevent min-maxers from exploiting the imperfect set of rules. Many of those recommended have been already shared throughout this book. The whole Power of Prayer portion of the book is an example, where the usage of the power of the deity served requires consistency and ideological alignment. Thus, should a member of that church become a problem by drawing attention, misusing his or her power, not paying dues or whatever the reason, often the upper hierarchy will mark that member for discipline, punishment, expulsion or perhaps even assassination. This is why having meaning beyond just the numbers is critical to the game. And in the end, the more the players are immersed in the world culture and natural laws, the better the game will flow.

Specifically to this game world, Enchanted Realms is a fantasy world where spirits, called kamii, control the physics of the world at the will of the gods. There is no meteorology science to define weather patterns; instead a greater weather kami of the region commands hundreds upon thousands of underlings spirits to bring about the weather. More detail about kamii controlling the physics (chimerics) of the fantasy world will be discussed later, but as with understanding culture, it is equally important to recognize that things do not work the same as on Earth; thus, assumptions can be avoided.