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Setting Questions

 


Question:  Why did your writer or designer set the game setting so far in the future? It seems to take place in the year 2364AD, right? Other Post Apocalyptic games and movies are much more modern or near future in their time period. The Mad Max ((Road Warrior) movies with Mel Gibson, as well as other movies which TME refers to in various places, (The Postman, Water World, Terminator, etc.) are only a few decades after some sort of cataclysm or nuclear war.

Answer: The Mutant Epoch certainly draws inspiration from Mad Max, Doomsday, Water World, The Postman, Terminator, and dozens of other PA films, all of which depict a much more recent holocaust.  The time line of the apocalypse that is suggested in The Mutant Epoch differs from the commonly held depictions of the end of our civilization  because the collapse e was slower, more regional, and in some places is still going on. Furthermore, the war wasnít so much with fellow humans as it was with the Mecha or robotic factions, mutant barbarians, rebel synthetic humans, as well as the devastation caused by plagues, famine, geological and weather anomalies, floods, droughts and rogue mutant creatures.  TME is only partially based on a post apocalyptic reality, and is instead focused on a science fiction elements such as mutants, robots, advanced technologies, genetic manipulations, and eve space travel. The length of time it takes for evolution to do its work, even accelerated thousand times by radiation, bio-genetic agents, grafting, cloning and whatnot, requires a few centuries at least. Also, the current 21st century technology isnít sufficient to allow the setting to include the advanced robotics, androids weaponry, armor and vehicles depicted in the game.

            On the other hand, a GM wanting to create a near future campaign using the TME Hub Rules need only place the setting in his or her home town, remove all advanced technology ( robots, laser weapons, advanced armors, cyborgs, synthetic humans, etc) limit mutations and then create encounter and loot tables appropriately. A suggestion would be to populate the encounter tables with marauders on motorcycles, or the streets with starving masses, some plague victims who seem more like zombies, and the highly lethal survivalist squads which control whole neighborhoods or stretches of highway.

 


Question: What is the difference between an Excavator (Digger) and the NPC's called Scavengers or Scavs? They seem to do the same thing and go into the same ruined areas.

 

Answer: Excavators are group orientated, more focused explorers, and the term is often used interchangeably with the title of adventurer, mercenary, archeologist, grave robber, digger, and whatnot. They are often based out of a town or roam from community to community taking on work or quests for either profit, glory or to improve the lives of common people. Excavators know that working alone or in very small groups, as Scavs do, is dangerous, especially when entering the ruined skyscrapers or subterranean depths of the old cities and installations, all very deadly places where only a well equipped, well organized and elite team can enter and survive.

            Scavengers on the other hand are loners, think of them as solitary survivalists, who are often not much more than mad hermits living off in the hills and shunning the towns and trade routes, unless they need to buy some essentials such as salt, water, seeds, a new crossbow, and such. They are usually males, often times wanted criminals or deserters from some factional army. They tend to avoid travelers, even excavators who they both admire and distrust, and often rely on. It is not uncommon for a scavengers to follow a dig team a considerable distance into the intact portions of a ruined metropolis, observing their braver associates for any causalities to loot, new openings to explore and opportunities to get a hold of a relic weapon or suit of armor. While a lone scavenger can pose a threat to a single excavator, these 'dust devils' don't normally participate in robbery nor murder, especially against excavators whom occasionally come to the aid of scavs, or camp with them to share news and their rations of beer and wine. Of all new era people, scavs really only trust excavators, and many of this caste secretly wish they had the guts to go deeper into the ruins the way the diggers do. In short, scavs are lone hermits, who collect scrap metal, plastic, bits of glass, old toys, wirings, the parts of wrecked robots an vehicles, and then sell these items to wandering traders or in the relic markets of towns and cities. They are secretive, cunning and stealthy, surviving among the many dangerous creatures of the wastelands by keeping out of their way, relying on their dirty cloaks to remain hidden, and by being very aware of where all the major predators keep their lairs, at what times they hunt, and where the safest 'hidey holes' can be found in which to spend the night. They can occasionally be hired by excavators to serve as guides, but will usually go no further once the edge of the more-or less intact ancient structures begin, and will almost never go underground in search of the junk they so covet.


 

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