Jump to content

Recommended Posts

This came up during the discussion about Forton and I think that it deserves it's own thread:

 

I think that, unless there are Asian inspired cultures that are believably worked into the presumably western setting, Monks should be taken in a different direction. I'm not talking too much about mechanics but more about feel and integration into the game world. It doesn't make too much sense to have ninja, samurai or Shaolin monks walking around a setting that is essentially (please correct me if I'm wrong) late Medieval Western Europe. I guess if they were few and far between and were noticed to be out-of-place by the population they could work, but that seems like it wouldn't be well implemented.

 

What are your thoughts on this? What would need to change? How could they be implemented without breaking internal logic?

  • Like 1

Brown Bear- attacks Squirrel
Brown Bear did 18 damage to Squirrel
Squirrel- death

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think that elements from eastern cultures could quite easily fit into the setting - despite it being predominantly western. It's a fantasy setting, so as such they are far less constrained as to what elements they can incorporate without it seeming weird. I think have martial arts or monk sects will be fine, I'm sure they'll find a way to make them mesh in a way that doesn't feel out of place.

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I was originally dismayed at the inclusion of Monks, but I hope Obsidian will give them good a lore explanation to why they are there and how their powers work with the setting.


"Well, overkill is my middle name. And my last name. And all of my other names as well!"

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

http://forums.obsidi...the-monk-class/

 

Welcome to the club. Personally I think some kind of background could determine what kind of monk one is. Considering that Vallians are supposed to be big merchants, it wouldn't be off the charts to have someone from the "Far East" equivalent of the P:E world. Though it shouldn't be commonplace.

 

Monk background 1: You were a monk/priest at a church/temple/monastery of Magran(firearms!)... bla bla bla......

Monk background 2: You have travelled to the <Tibet equivalent> of the world, where you learned some of the best close combat unarmed techniques.... bla bla bla....

Monk background 3: You are a devout follower of Eothas, the god of salvation. You keep trying to save the souls of the people of x, through a show of kindness and health care bla bla bla...(Hospitaller)

 

etc.

 

But Forton specifically, I don't like. He's just too transparent. The NeverWinter like eye on his abdomen doesn't make it better. If monks do learn martial arts in the "west" equivalent, at least dress west-like.

Edited by kenup

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm not sure how many ways you can take a spiritually ascendant fist fighter and change how he's presented without altering that core principle of the class, which you said you didn't really want altered. The only thing to really change after that is their clothing and personally I don't mind if the monks are looking like European monastic monks with hooded brown robes or if they're Asian inspired monks wearing clothes inspired from that region. Really the issue is that if we see something vaguely Asian we assume their is a culture behind that look because that's the way it is in our world. I'd say any sort of visual style doesn't need to be cultural in its origin. It could just as easily be practical or a quirk of whatever 'order' the monk belongs to.

 

I'm sure monks in PE will end up having a flavor all their own just based solely on how souls fuel the magic of the world. The way they're accessing their power just like priests and mages and fighters will be what ties them into the world in a convincing way so I don't see a need to worry about them sticking out like a sore thumb.

Edited by Pshaw

K is for Kid, a guy or gal just like you. Don't be in such a hurry to grow up, since there's nothin' a kid can't do.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well, if we treat monks as having the traditional meditative/spiritual aspect, there's a chance to incorporate some interesting elements with them in the Eternity gameworld. It would be interesting if, as you leveled your monk, his ability to tap into his soul's past allowed him to harness talents and abilities from former lives or whatnot.

 

Likewise, their ability to perhaps "stitch" souls - those souls that have fractured over time could make them invaluable (or hunted...or venerated). Monks themselves could turn to the order (the Obsidian Order? ;-)) in fear of their own souls or perhaps even just seeking to elevate their souls to a higher level. Maybe monks are family men, and given the way souls work in society, they're the P:E equivalent of 1st generation immigrants toiling away so that their kids can have a better life.

 

It would be interesting to see a monk not be a combat machine, but almost like a bard - where the knowledge and past lives they're able to pull information from make them invaluable in ruins, looking at books, identifying people and items, etc - and a cleric - particularly the elements dealing with the relationship between man and soul, soul and gods.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Here's my PE monk concept, tell me what you guys think.

 

You meet the monk travelling along a road or something somewhere in a random location he claims to be a traveller from a distant land who has come a great distance in search of a challenger worthy of his skill. When you tell him your a warrior, he offers to duel you, oddly however, he refuses to use any weapons for the duel, claiming that "his fists are deadlier than any sword" you fight the monk(should be pretty challenging) if he beats you, he laughs in your face and walks off in search of someone who can take him. If you win however, he is humbled and bows low before you, asking that he be allowed to learn from you.

 

Boom, you get a monk companion, he is potentially very powerful but refuses to use weapons. If you talk to him maybe you learn more about his past and the distant land he comes from, say he killed his master, or believes in strange foreign gods, or has a Buddhist-esque philosophy explaining the nature of all things. His side quest could be finding an ancient scroll depicting some ultimate technique or other. As far as I can tell this would be perfectly feasible within the current setting, and would maintain the traditional shaolin monk archetype, without you ever having to actually travel to the far east.

Edited by jezz555

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I had another idea:

Monks would still be part of a strict order or whatnot and would still have martial training, but would take on a similar role to monks in Medieval Europe, but they wouldn't have to be religious figures as they were historically. With the lack of the printing press, monks would have been the ones transcribing scriptures and texts. The monks in PE could be quite knowledgeable, academic even, while still retaining the martial aspects that would be part of their order.


Brown Bear- attacks Squirrel
Brown Bear did 18 damage to Squirrel
Squirrel- death

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

There was another discussion upon this topic a while back, in another section of the forums. This is what I had to say about it then:

 

To answer what I see a monk as in terms of fluff and lore, one must first understand how I see the monk mechanically. It's an interesting class (and not just because it's inexplicably Eastern in an otherwise European setting) but because it seems to be a jack of all trades. Monks, as we all know, are masters of kung fu no matter what their origins. As well as being strong and tough, they're also nimble and able, have dexterity to match their strength, have an array of skills that stem from a similar source as their fighting abilities (hence why kung fu masters always get you to do chores before training you). Lastly, there's the chi/divine powers, a power that seems similar to that the religiously devout, except channelled inwards, to make them better at what they do.

 

They are like bards (or, in the context of Project Eternity, chanters) in a lot of ways, in the sense that they have no particular strength, but are just capable in many different areas. The difference is that the bard traditionally uses their skills to aid others in combat (such as singing or using their minor magics to help allies), but the monk is his own man. He can carry his own weight very well, but at the extent of not being able to carry anyone else's. He can take his fair share of damage, but he can't take damage for other characters, can't be a tank. He can detect traps and avoid them, but he can't disable them, can't make the progress of his allies easier. He can cast magic, but only on himself, only to make him stronger or more nimble or more resilient, or to remove poisons and diseases from his body. He is perfect for soloing, so good in fact, that even when he's in a group, it still feels like he's soloing it up.

 

So what does this tell me of the lore behind the monks? I see them people who have trained, perhaps in isolation, perhaps under a master. They have trained their bodies, their souls, have turned all their attention inwards. They go on quests of self-discovery, of self-perfection. All their attention is in the internal, in the personal. The word "monk" does not have religious conotations, but spiritual ones. It means that the person, whoever and wherever they are, have devoted no small part of their time to perfecting themselves (though what "perfection" means varies from monk to monk). They don't need to know martial arts, they might not even need to know all that much about fighting, what they do know about is unity, about moving their body and soul as one.

 

That's how I see it, anyway. Spritual warrior first. Kung fu badasses second.

 

Looking back at it, I see little I disagree with, although I hasten to add that this is but one of many possible interpretations of the monk class. Some prefer to be more traditional with their monks, but I see the monk as a concept that has evolved in the fantasy RPG genre (like bards or paladins), one that has gone beyond its out-of-place pseudo-Shaolin origins.

Edited by temporalTemptation

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This came up during the discussion about Forton and I think that it deserves it's own thread:

 

I think that, unless there are Asian inspired cultures that are believably worked into the presumably western setting, Monks should be taken in a different direction. I'm not talking too much about mechanics but more about feel and integration into the game world. It doesn't make too much sense to have ninja, samurai or Shaolin monks walking around a setting that is essentially (please correct me if I'm wrong) late Medieval Western Europe. I guess if they were few and far between and were noticed to be out-of-place by the population they could work, but that seems like it wouldn't be well implemented.

 

What are your thoughts on this? What would need to change? How could they be implemented without breaking internal logic?

 

I think you're bringing up a thread we've had several times before.

 

The end all be all is that Obsidian wouldn't have a Monk, or Forton, as they are now, unless they somehow fit into the universe they are creating. The end.

 

It doesn't make too much sense to have ninja, samurai or Shaolin monks walking around a setting that is essentially (please correct me if I'm wrong) late Medieval Western Europe.

 

This isn't medieval europe. This is not a historically accurate retelling of old timey times. This is a high fantasy Universe created by Obsidian. What makes sense are the things that Obsidian have decided are a part of their world that they have created. Forton is not a Shaolin Monk.

 

Monks in P:E, from what little we know, have several elements. They use their souls, which is not out of place in P:E as the soul plays a big role in P:E. We have been told that in P:E you can harness your soul to super human effect, or the explosively magical. We know that Monks somehow use their souls to enhance themselves physically. We know from the color group picture of the companions that Forton can make his hands come alight with magical energy - suggesting that he can enhance his attacks beyond a simple increase in strength. We know that you can defend yourself, magically, in P:E by harnessing your soul, in one way or another.

 

So everything we've seen of the Monk, so far, has an explanation that is linked to the things we know about how souls can be used in P:E.

 

We also know that mortification of the flesh plays a role in at least some of P:E's Monks. We know that Forton has scars and tattos. We know he wears light armor, and that he may use more than his hands for combat, as he keeps a weapon on his belt.

 

It doesn't make too much sense to have ninja, samurai or Shaolin monks walking around a setting that is essentially (please correct me if I'm wrong) late Medieval Western Europe.

 

I'd also note that we don't have a full map of this fantasy world, only a partial map. We have no idea what lays beyond the map's edges. Even in reality people migrate from one area of the world to the other, sometimes in great masses. We've had cases of thousands, tens-of-thousands, hundreds-of-thousands and even millions of people migrating, either in bulk or in a trickle over several years. And that's reality, with out history. In a fantasy world any number of things could have happened to cause a mass migration, either in bulk, or in a trickle over years long past, to bring another culture into the lands of another culture - in significant numbers.

 

Monk, as a term, in RPGs, is its own beast, you can connect it to reality all you want, and point out different kinds of real world Monks . . . but it's relatively pointless. Monks in RPGs have become their own thing quite separate from reality, and many takes on what a Monk is exist varying RPGs out there. If you're worried about real world culture nonsense - don't - the cultures, and what is fitting, in this world are defined by Obsidian. If you're worried about Monks and their gear, don't, plenty of RPGs have handled Monks, even unarmed Monks, and still properly allowed for their itemization. If your worried about real world western/eastern/historical anything, stop it. This isn't a history lesson, it's a high fantasy RPG where Ciphers and Wizards harness magical energies just as P:E's take on the Monk seems to, or rather, they all harness their souls to in different ways, and to different effects.

 

I'm not saying don't discuss Monks, or what you'd like to see from them, . . . but please leave the 'Shaolin Monks don't make sense running around Medeival Europe" nonsense at the door. P:E's Monks aren't Shaolin Monks (nor have Monks in any RPG I've played for that matter) and P:E isn't set in Medieval Europe.

Edited by Umberlin
  • Like 5

"Step away! She has brought truth and you condemn it? The arrogance!

You will not harm her, you will not harm her ever again!"

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Okay. Well for an example of a non-oriental monk, how about a theistic order known as the "watchers of the eternal flame"?

 

These monks have served as guardians of this flame for untold generations, maintaining these sacred fires in their simple domed temples and defending the flame against all threats. The flame must be preserved at all costs, and, if it ever goes out, the fire may only be relit by transporting the flame from another temple. In order to survive the fickle whims of history, the guardians have foresworn political ambition, territorial conquest, and the accoutrements of the military. This has kept them safe from the nobility, strongmen, and would-be conquerors, since the guardians are not perceived as a threat to the political control of the land. Likewise, their mystique has spread so far and wide that nobody risks endangering their temples.

 

The aestetic of the order requires them to live simply with a minimum of possessions and gear. Contemplation of the eternal flame, which is descended from the divine fire of their patron god, has revealed secrets to the order that are closely held by the brotherhood of monks, and allows them to perform exceptional feats of physical and mental prowess. Over the centuries, the order have mastered mystical techniques for defending their flames under all conditions, day and night, using only their bodies or simple weapons.

 

The unparalleled martial skills of these monks are said to have no equal outside the order, although an occasional rival school has sprung up under the tutelage of ambitious defectors. A few monks choose to take leave of the order so as to pursue their personal agendas. These itinerant monks often continue to live according to the same aesthetic principles as the order, although they lose those additional mystical powers bestowed by the aura of the eternal flame.

:fdevil:


"It has just been discovered that research causes cancer in rats."

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I agree with the idea of allowing them to have a different flavor to them. We shouldn't have the "asian" class. Because of that, I think it'd be valuable to identify themes that still fit into a traditional monk that still can exist without the monk seeming foreign.

 

1) I agree with the earlier point that monks are spiritual warriors first. They have powers from their special inward focus, and unique training practices, that allow them to be very talented fighters.

2) I don't think that monk NEEDS to be equivalent to kung fu. They need to be martial artists though more than warriors. However, there are many cases of characters that are monks by their flavor, even though they use armed combat. Like the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. The turtles were clearly monks by training and practice, but each turtle was trained in the use of a weapon. Another example is Himura Kenshin, the swordsman from the manga Rurouni Kenshin. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Himura_Kenshin He's a master of a weapon, his weapon style is a monk-like style though. The idea that "monk martial artist = unarmed combat expert" is really not the reality in the background culture.

3) I wouldn't mind efforts to reflavor the monk class so that it is not just an "asian" thing, but rather can be perceived as fitting easily into many other cultural conceptions. I mean, the historical roots of unarmed combat styles are due to the need of unarmed people to protect themselves from armed people, and most religious practices can have meditation, devotion, and many of the other concepts a good monk "needs to have".

4) I wouldn't mind our "spiritual warrior monk" also potentially being a man of the world as well. Not all religious practices are otherworldly, and not all people who have developed their spiritual side HAVE TO lack a desire for worldly things. So, because of how many fantasy games pluralize religious concepts, with gods of evil, greed, and all of the rest. Why not allow for monks that are involved in these things. They have the spiritual discipline, their spiritual discipline allows or even promotes a this-worldliness where they can partake in the parties, so long as they still maintain their training disciplines.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
This isn't medieval europe. This is not a historically accurate retelling of old timey times. This is a high fantasy Universe created by Obsidian. What makes sense are the things that Obsidian have decided are a part of their world that they have created. Forton is not a Shaolin Monk.

 

This pretty much, some of you people are ridiculous.

  • Like 4

Ka-ka-ka-ka-Cocaine!


Z9SVsCY.gif

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
This isn't medieval europe. This is not a historically accurate retelling of old timey times. This is a high fantasy Universe created by Obsidian. What makes sense are the things that Obsidian have decided are a part of their world that they have created. Forton is not a Shaolin Monk.

 

This pretty much, some of you people are ridiculous.

 

Yes...some people. For example those, who employ the same absurd all-or-nothing argument that seems to see perpetual use on this forum. Of course Forton isn't a Shaolin Monk, but that is demonstrably the origin of the class. Of course Obsidian can make whatever kind of character they want, obviously, nobody was ever debating the fact that it is ultimately up to them what they put in their game. But Good fantasy, has a basis in reality, PE, based on what has been posted so far, has a basis in reality.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm not saying that it has to be entirely historically accurate, but if the world is inspired by Medieval Europe and the cultural environment (architecture, dress, technology) resembles Medieval Europe the introduction of a class that is oriental in origin feels out of place. I believe that Obsidian will implement them in a both appropriate and engaging way, I'm just curious as to how people suggest an essentially out-of-place class is to be fit in to the game.


Brown Bear- attacks Squirrel
Brown Bear did 18 damage to Squirrel
Squirrel- death

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The setting seems to be pretty strongly Eastern-influenced to me. For one thing, there's the whole souls and reincarnation thing with the debate over the nature of gods (actual gods or merely very powerful reincarnated/reborn beings), which is an actual major point of contention between Hinduism and Buddhism.

 

For visual and architectural influences, check out the building in the wallpaper picture:

 

e49917855934dcc9a6b2ee4bc18cf8e7_large.jpg?1349300271

 

From where I'm at, that looks a lot like a (ruined) Japanese, Chinese temple, especially the hanging bells.

 

stock-photo-row-of-japanese-bells-for-bringing-good-luck-in-a-kyoto-temple-45382954.jpg

 

On the other hand, Cadegund and Edair at least are obvious Westerners, and Sagani has the feel of a Siberian nomad. It looks like the world of Eternity is culturally extremely diverse. I trust Obsidian intends to have it all mesh rather than just being a random jumble of cool-looking characters.

 

And I certainly don't see any problems fitting monks into the setting, whether they're "Eastern" or "Western" in flavor.

  • Like 2

I have a project. It's a tabletop RPG. It's free. It's a work in progress. Find it here: www.brikoleur.com

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm not saying that it has to be entirely historically accurate, but if the world is inspired by Medieval Europe and the cultural environment (architecture, dress, technology) resembles Medieval Europe the introduction of a class that is oriental in origin feels out of place. I believe that Obsidian will implement them in a both appropriate and engaging way, I'm just curious as to how people suggest an essentially out-of-place class is to be fit in to the game.

 

Traveller from a far-off land, pretty simple imo.

Edited by jezz555

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The issue I have with the traveller idea is that it works for an NPC, or maybe even the PC, but not really for a whole class. Presumably, if the devs are including a class, there will be a substantial number of them and, for me, having every member of a major class be a traveller from a far-off land doesn't quite work. Another issue that I find common in rpgs with the traveller from far-off lands is that it's quite difficult to actually make the character seem like an outsider. Often it isn't done very well.


Brown Bear- attacks Squirrel
Brown Bear did 18 damage to Squirrel
Squirrel- death

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm not saying that it has to be entirely historically accurate, but if the world is inspired by Medieval Europe and the cultural environment (architecture, dress, technology) resembles Medieval Europe the introduction of a class that is oriental in origin feels out of place. I believe that Obsidian will implement them in a both appropriate and engaging way, I'm just curious as to how people suggest an essentially out-of-place class is to be fit in to the game.

 

Traveller from a far-off land, pretty simple imo.

Excuse me for being happy you are not one of the game writers. Doesn't get more easy and cliché than that x.x

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

no need to connect a fantasy world to RL (any era), LOTR doesn't have to be read with commies, nazis, or allies in mind trying to imagine which faction the Fellowship or somesuch is

 

It is obvious the developers intended to create an unique cultural landscape for this game, with also blending some RL pieces into it, concept art shows as example that many clothes and structures resemble asian ones (mixed with European or "Petran" design) so RL oriental gear is quite appropiate for the setting.

 

edit: besides, whatever Obsidian places in the game it won't be out of place, exactly becvause they define what "is supposed to be in that place" to begin with, I wouldn't mind a white rabbit in a cave myself

Edited by Jorian Drake

IB1OsQq.png

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...

×
×
  • Create New...