What if we took EvE Online, and made a fantasy game out of it — using all of EvE’s mechanisms, as closely as possible? Syncaine claims that EvE has solved nearly all MMO problems. Fine, let’s turn that around.
In EvE, you fly ships from system to system, battling, exploring, gathering resources, trading, or any other purpose you can find. You, though, are not your ship. Your ship can be blowed up. You can try to escape, but maybe you get blowed up, too. But not to worry. Upon word of your untimely demise, a clone will arise from a vat to carry on where you left off.
An eternal warrior, who though all his companions might be killed, though he himself may die, will live again. That drips of fable and fantasy.
Story kind of writes itself from here, doesn’t it?
You start your adult life in your family home on the outskirts of a village. The masters and wizards in the village can teach you much, but their knowledge has limits, and soon you will have to set out from your home in search of your destiny.
You won’t set out alone, though. You’ll have a cart, and a horse. An old sword you inherited from your father. A wooden shield, once painted white. A leather jerkin. And some hired hands — a trained woodsman, who can forage and hunt food for the trip, and maybe an old fighter who has asked to come along on one last adventure.
If you stay on the King’s roads, you’ll be safe, and can find your fortune in the world, never worrying about the wider, wilder, world outside the cities. You’ll find more people who wish to join you as your fame and knowledge grows; more fighters and better ones; a healer; perhaps even wizards to cast spells of divination and warding for you. You’ll bring them back to your village, which will become a city; and your cottage, which will become a castle.
Soon you will have a small army, and now, perhaps, you want to venture off the King’s roads and into the Wild, where monsters dwell and treasure hides. You gather your army and set off. One night, you camp at the edge of an ancient swamp, with crumbling ruins poking from it that resemble the broken ribs of some gigantic creature in the smoky moonlight.
The fog thickens… and from that fog comes a spectral army, slaughtering and slaying and catching you entirely unaware… your army fights back, bravely, but their weapons are no match for the ghostly crew that assails them. The screams of your men and the dead cackle of the specters chase you through the forest, back to the King’s road and back to your city. You rest, set your wizards to finding out who commanded that dread legion, and then slowly begin to amass an army, even greater, to get your revenge…