History TabletopGame / CastleFalkenstein

12th Nov '17 12:50:57 AM Spindriver
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* ShoePhone: Spies (and quite a few other people) in the setting love their period-style concealed gadgets, and there are game rules to cover the topic.
10th Sep '17 3:07:03 PM WanderingBrowser
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* TakeThat: In ''Comme Il Faut'', in a sidebar from Tom about how he had always thought of the Victorian obsession with "good taste" as a form hypocrisy, he notes that part of his increased sympathy for the Victorian way of doing things is that at least it's superior to people "showing up on sleazy talk shows flaunting their addictions, abuses and other failings as though they are virtues".


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** In ''Curious Creatures'', Thomas Stubbins goes from having fallen into self-loathing mediocrity after he was left behind by Literature/DoctorDolittle to recruiting the Second Compact to help him recover the doctor's final manuscript to ultimately joining their ranks.
30th Aug '17 12:25:42 PM narm00
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''Castle Falkenstein'' is a quasi-historical tabletop RPG published in 1994 by R.Talsorian Games. A handful of supplements followed, and a TabletopGame/{{GURPS}} adaptation of the setting was published in 2000.

The story is an alternate universe set during the Victorian era, mostly in Europe -- or as its called, New Europa. Many fixtures of period fiction, high fantasy, and real history are all present, including high society intrigue, war between European powers, and the shadowy presence of magicians and faeries.

Rather than being a straight setting for the 19th century era like ''Victoriana, Castle Falkenstein'' defines itself with the slogan of "the Victorian Era as it [[SlidingScaleLongName Should Have Been]]", in which gallant [[BigDamnHeroes men and women]] fight the forces of evil, [[SteamPunk steam-powered contraptions]] fill the skies and [[FantasyKitchenSink faeries]] are a regular sight in the cities of Europe. While calling itself a {{Steampunk}} setting, the books constantly imply and point that many of the technologies are thanks to subtle (and unconscious) manipulation of [[{{Magitek}} sorcery,]] making it a straight {{Gaslamp Fantasy}} with a heavy dose of TwoFistedTales and {{Dungeon Punk}} for good measure.

The book itself is a whimsical mix of illustrated novel, world book and game; most of it is glossy, coloured, illustrated and completely avoids mentioning any rules, while the book tells the story of Tom Olam, a [[AuthorAvatar game designer]] plucked magically from Earth to help in the ongoing fight against the [[BigBad Unseelie]] and their human collaborator, [[TheDragon Otto von Bismarck]]; occasional stops are made for more in-depth exposition about life in ''New Europa''.

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''Castle Falkenstein'' is a quasi-historical tabletop RPG published in 1994 by R. Talsorian Games. A handful of supplements followed, and a TabletopGame/{{GURPS}} adaptation of the setting was published in 2000. \n\n Fat Goblin Games acquired the license to put out additional supplements in 2016.

The story is an alternate universe set during the Victorian era, mostly in Europe -- or as its called, it's called in this universe, New Europa. Many fixtures of period fiction, high fantasy, and real history are all present, including high society intrigue, war between European powers, and the shadowy presence of magicians and faeries.

Rather than being a straight setting for the 19th century era like ''Victoriana, ''TabletopGame/{{Victoriana}}, Castle Falkenstein'' defines itself with the slogan of "the Victorian Era as it [[SlidingScaleLongName Should Have Been]]", in which gallant [[BigDamnHeroes men and women]] fight the forces of evil, [[SteamPunk steam-powered contraptions]] fill the skies and [[FantasyKitchenSink faeries]] are a regular sight in the cities of Europe. While calling itself a {{Steampunk}} setting, the books constantly imply and point that many of the technologies are thanks to subtle (and unconscious) manipulation of [[{{Magitek}} sorcery,]] making it a straight {{Gaslamp Fantasy}} with a heavy dose of TwoFistedTales and {{Dungeon Punk}} for good measure.

The book corebook itself is a whimsical mix of illustrated novel, world book and game; most of it is glossy, coloured, illustrated and completely avoids mentioning any rules, while the book tells telling the story of Tom Olam, a [[AuthorAvatar game designer]] plucked magically from Earth to help in the ongoing fight against the [[BigBad Unseelie]] and their human collaborator, [[TheDragon Otto von Bismarck]]; occasional stops are made for more in-depth exposition about life in ''New Europa''.



* AnachronismStew: In part because of the Faeries, who had traveled trough several dimensions, some of them in the space age. Mostly because there are enough {{Mad Scientist}}s to give ''Webcomic/GirlGenius'' a run for her money.

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* AnachronismStew: In part because of the Faeries, who had traveled trough through several dimensions, some of them in the space age. Mostly because there are enough {{Mad Scientist}}s to give ''Webcomic/GirlGenius'' [[Webcomic/GirlGenius Agatha Heterodyne]] a run for her money.



* CanonDiscontinuity: For Fat Goblin Games, the Steve Jackson books are discontinuity, in large part thanks to copyright issues.



* EmperorScientist: Lord Yoshikazu Tomino, one of the settings most successful Masterminds, who rules the northern Japanese islands with the aid of his HumongousMecha.

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* EmperorScientist: Lord Yoshikazu Tomino, one of the settings setting's most successful Masterminds, who rules the northern Japanese islands with the aid of his HumongousMecha.



* FromNobodyToNightmare: How most New Europa see Bismarck and Prussia, especially since 20 years before the only true powers were France and England.

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* FromNobodyToNightmare: How most of New Europa see Bismarck and Prussia, especially since 20 years before the only true powers were France and England.



* HalfHumanHybrid: ''Curious Creatures''' Beast Folk encompass things like [[OurWerewolvesAreDifferent cursed werewolves]], [[Literature/TheIslandOfDoctorMoreau Moreau-type creations]], and [[JekyllAndHyde people following in Dr. Jekyll's footsteps]].



* {{Humanshifting}}: [[{{Weredragon}} Dragons]] and True Unicorns can both take human form (or human-''like'' form, in the Dragons' case).



* IstanbulNotConstantinople : Most of Europe - sorry, "Europa" - has the same names and borders as in our reality, but South America is Antillea, and the Atlantic Ocean is the Atlantean Ocean, among other things.
* JadeColoredGlasses: One of the first and most lasting cultural clashes of Tom with the citizens of New Europa. As far Tom is concerned, all technology will end in dystopia (a rabid dog as he put it) and destruction. He is a firm supporter of the Second Compact, whose purpose to slow (and in some cases stop altogether) the advancement of technology for the sake of the world.
* KarmaHoudini: If the complementary book "Memoirs of Auberon of Faerie" is anywhere near correct, ''all'' the Fae, whether Seelie or Unseelie, are [[spoiler: unrepentant mass murderers, '''literally''' killing, raping, torturing and bringing two entire dimensions' worth of Millions of Humans to extinction... and so far they have shown no sense of remorse]]. It really gives you a new perspective on the witty, charming Fae you met in the Ballroom, huh?

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* IstanbulNotConstantinople : IstanbulNotConstantinople: Most of Europe - sorry, "Europa" - has the same names and borders as in our reality, but South America is Antillea, and the Atlantic Ocean is the Atlantean Ocean, among other things.
* JadeColoredGlasses: One of the first and most lasting cultural clashes of Tom with the citizens of New Europa. As far Tom is concerned, all technology will end in dystopia (a rabid dog as he put it) and destruction. He is a firm supporter of the Second Compact, whose purpose is to slow (and in some cases stop altogether) the advancement of technology for the sake of the world.
* KarmaHoudini: If the complementary book "Memoirs of Auberon of Faerie" is anywhere near correct, ''all'' the Fae, whether Seelie or Unseelie, are [[spoiler: unrepentant mass murderers, '''literally''' killing, raping, torturing and bringing two entire dimensions' worth of Millions millions of Humans humans to extinction... and so far they have shown no sense of remorse]]. It really gives you a new perspective on the witty, charming Fae you met in the Ballroom, huh?ballroom, huh? That said, there are some, such as the Sphinxes, interested in delivering a measure of karma to the Fae... although they're not much better than their enemies.



* LiteraryAgentHypothesis: The ''Castle Falkenstein'' books are allegedly written by Tom Olam, an acquaintance of game publisher Mike Pondsmith who mysteriously vanished during a vacation in Europe; Olam sends documents to Pondsmith claiming to have been abducted to a Steam Punk-plus-magic alternate world, in which he wrote the rules to the game using cards because the local nobility were scandalized at the thought of gaming with dice.
** [[InvokedTrope Invoked]] In Universe, to say that characters and their authors each exist. For example, the author relates an incident in which while attending a lecture by Darwin, he notices [[Literature/SherlockHolmes A.C.Doyle and Dr. Watson]] having a discussion between themselves about the lecture.

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* LiteraryAgentHypothesis: The ''Castle Falkenstein'' books are allegedly written sent from New Europa by Tom Olam, an acquaintance of game publisher Mike Pondsmith who mysteriously vanished during a vacation in Europe; Olam sends documents to Pondsmith claiming to have been abducted to a Steam Punk-plus-magic alternate world, in which he wrote the rules to the game using cards because the local nobility were scandalized at the thought of gaming with dice.
dice. Some of the books are written by Olam himself, while others are written by residents of New Europa.
** [[InvokedTrope Invoked]] In Universe, to say that characters and their authors each exist. For example, the author relates an incident in which while attending a lecture by Darwin, he notices [[Literature/SherlockHolmes A.C. C. Doyle and Dr. Watson]] having a discussion between themselves about the lecture.



* {{Mayincatec}}: The blood mages

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* {{Mayincatec}}: The blood magesmages.



* NoCelebritiesWereHarmed: Every splat book has a appendix with scores of real historical figures and how they live in this Universe.

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* NoCelebritiesWereHarmed: Every splat book sourcebook has a appendix with scores of real historical figures and how they live in this Universe.universe.



* OurDragonsAreDifferent: Magical Dragons that survived the extinction of the dinosaurs several millions years ago.

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* OurDragonsAreDifferent: Magical Dragons that survived the extinction of the dinosaurs several many millions of years ago. ago.
* OurDwarvesAreAllTheSame: Somewhat {{Averted}}; while dwarves have some of the miners/dwarfclan/short temper typical feel, they are completely immune to fire, need other races to reproduce, and you will hardly ever find a "Viking-type dwarf", they being consummate engineers/mad scientists. They are also rather indifferent about their beards - but don't you dare to mock [[BerserkButton their feet]]. Or their names.



* OurDwarvesAreAllTheSame: Somewhat {{Averted}}, while dwarves have some of the miners/dwarfclan/short temper typical feel, they are completely immune to fire, need other races to reproduce, and you will hardly ever find a "Viking-type dwarf", they being consummate engineers/mad scientists. They are also rather indifferent about their beards - but don't you dare to mock [[BerserkButton their feet]].
* OurVampiresAreDifferent: The main vampires in the setting are a OneGenderRace (all female) of Unseelie Faeries. It wasn't until the ''Book of Sigils'' splat that actual undead vampires (called "vampirs") were added. {{Literature/Dracula}} also exists in this setting, but he's actually not a vampire. He's an Unseelie Dark Lord.
* PraetorianGuard: Tom and Co. are part of this for the "Mad King" Ludwig.

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* OurDwarvesAreAllTheSame: Somewhat {{Averted}}, while dwarves have some of the miners/dwarfclan/short temper typical feel, they are completely immune to fire, need other races to reproduce, and you will hardly ever find a "Viking-type dwarf", they being consummate engineers/mad scientists. They are also rather indifferent about their beards - but don't you dare to mock [[BerserkButton their feet]].
* OurVampiresAreDifferent: The main vampires in the setting are a OneGenderRace (all female) of Unseelie Faeries. It wasn't until the ''Book of Sigils'' splat sourcebook that actual undead vampires (called "vampirs") were added. {{Literature/Dracula}} also exists in this setting, but he's actually not a vampire. He's an Unseelie Dark Lord.
* PraetorianGuard: Tom and Co. are part of this for the "Mad King" Ludwig.
Lord.



* PraetorianGuard: Tom and Co. are part of this for the "Mad King" Ludwig.



* {{Sourcebook}}: Original 7 in total. The Core book, ''Comme Il Faut'', ''Steam Age'', ''Memoirs of Auberon'', ''Sixguns and Sorcery'', ''Book of Sigils'' and the ''Lost Notebooks of Leonardo''. Steve Jackson Games gave us ''Ottoman Empire'' and the Core book revised six years later.
* SpyFiction: Of the Martini Flavored to the point of intoxication. Justified because all the deals and power plays are done in salons, clubs and high class reunions. It's pointed out that for all skulduggery, professionalism and double dealing, the spies can't be any less hammy than the society that spawns them.

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* {{Sourcebook}}: Original Originally 7 in total. The Core book, ''Comme Il Faut'', ''Steam Age'', ''Memoirs of Auberon'', ''Sixguns and Sorcery'', ''Book of Sigils'' and the ''Lost Notebooks of Leonardo''. Steve Jackson Games gave us ''Ottoman Empire'' and the Core book revised six years later. \n Fat Goblin Games has offered rules variants, adventures, and the bestiary ''Curious Creatures''.
* SpyFiction: Of the Martini Flavored to the point of intoxication. Justified because all the deals and power plays are done in salons, clubs and high class reunions. It's pointed out that for all their skulduggery, professionalism and double dealing, the spies can't be any less hammy than the society that spawns them.



* SummonEverymanHero: The ''Castle Falkenstein'' backstory tells of Tom Olam, computer game designer, who is summoned into a world of Victorian Steampunk Fantasy by a mighty spell. Although he proves to be of some value, the real prize is the book he brought with him--he picked it up at a used-book shop cheap, and it holds the secret to Saving The Day.

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* SummonEverymanHero: The ''Castle Falkenstein'' backstory tells of Tom Olam, computer game designer, who is summoned into a world of Victorian Steampunk Fantasy by a mighty spell. Although he proves to be of some value, the real prize is the book he brought with him--he him -- he picked it up at a used-book shop cheap, and it holds the secret to Saving The Day.



* TookALevelInBadass: Several for Tom. From a normal American game designer to one of the best secret agents in New Europa and hero of Bayern. Bonus points for gaining these abilities faster than most Adventurers gain pc levels.

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* TookALevelInBadass: Several for Tom. From a normal American game designer to one of the best secret agents in New Europa and hero of Bayern. Bonus points for gaining these abilities faster than most Adventurers gain pc PC levels.



* {{Unicorn}}: Covered in ''Curious Creatures'', coming in two types, the True and the False. True Unicorns are available as PC options; they resemble graceful, willowy goats with a single horn in the middle of their forehead, and are intelligent, capable of shifting into human form, [[LivingLieDetector able to detect lies and illusions]], able to speak to animals in both forms, able to [[{{Telepathy}} mindspeak]] in equine form, and incapable of lying. False Unicorns were created from wild horses by the Adversary in mockery of the legends surrounding True Unicorns, and more closely resemble the classic depiction, horses with a horn in the middle of their forehead which are drawn to women. In their case, however, they seek out women because they live in [[AndIMustScream constant agony]] that can only be eased when they hunt or kill human females.



* WildChild: A PC option in ''Curious Creatures'', available as both the real-world version and the literary RaisedByWolves version. The racial associations of these tropes and their relatives such as JunglePrincess also gets some discussion.



* WoodenShipsAndIronMen: England in the past. In 1900 they have the greatest navy the world has ever seen and their sailors are second to none.



* WoodenShipsAndIronMen: England in the past. In 1900 they have the greatest navy the world has ever seen and their sailors are second to none.
21st May '17 2:50:03 PM nombretomado
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(Not to be confused with [[WarGames Falken's Maze]].)

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(Not to be confused with [[WarGames [[Film/WarGames Falken's Maze]].)
13th May '17 10:20:57 AM nombretomado
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* MassiveMultiplayerCrossover: {{Franchise/Sherlock Holmes}} (and assorted sidekicks and nemeses), {{Literature/Dracula}}, [[{{Literature/Frankenstein}} Dr. Frankenstein]], [[Literature/TwentyThousandLeaguesUnderTheSea Captain Nemo]], [[Literature/AroundTheWorldInEightyDays Phileas Fogg]], Literature/JohnCarterOfMars, {{Literature/Flashman}}, and [[Literature/ThePrisonerOfZenda Rudolf Rassendyll]] all show up, to say nothing of the {{Lawyer Friendly Cameo}}s from Franchise/FuManchu and [[Series/TheWildWildWest Dr. Loveless]]. And all of them mingle with just about every 19th century historical figure you can think of, from Queen Victoria and Chancellor von Bismarck to Mark Twain and Emperor Norton.

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* MassiveMultiplayerCrossover: {{Franchise/Sherlock Holmes}} (and assorted sidekicks and nemeses), {{Literature/Dracula}}, [[{{Literature/Frankenstein}} Dr. Frankenstein]], [[Literature/TwentyThousandLeaguesUnderTheSea Captain Nemo]], [[Literature/AroundTheWorldInEightyDays Phileas Fogg]], Literature/JohnCarterOfMars, {{Literature/Flashman}}, and [[Literature/ThePrisonerOfZenda Rudolf Rassendyll]] all show up, to say nothing of the {{Lawyer Friendly Cameo}}s from Franchise/FuManchu Literature/FuManchu and [[Series/TheWildWildWest Dr. Loveless]]. And all of them mingle with just about every 19th century historical figure you can think of, from Queen Victoria and Chancellor von Bismarck to Mark Twain and Emperor Norton.
30th Jan '16 10:48:29 AM Morgenthaler
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CastleFalkenstein is a quasi-historical tabletop RPG published in 1994 by R.Talsorian Games. A handful of supplements followed, and a TabletopGame/{{GURPS}} adaptation of the setting was published in 2000.

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CastleFalkenstein ''Castle Falkenstein'' is a quasi-historical tabletop RPG published in 1994 by R.Talsorian Games. A handful of supplements followed, and a TabletopGame/{{GURPS}} adaptation of the setting was published in 2000.
12th Sep '15 1:11:26 PM Paireon
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* TheFairFolk: The Unseelie, who want nothing more than to wipe out/enslave all of humanity, because that's what they exist for.

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* TheFairFolk: The Unseelie, who want nothing more than to wipe out/enslave all of humanity, because that's what they exist for. The Seelie are nicer overall to humans, but you still don't want to piss them off. [[spoiler:Although see KarmaHoudini below for a rather nasty reveal...]]


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* ModernMayincatecEmpire: The Mayans got magical advance notice of the coming of the Spanish, enabling them to preserve a fair degree of autonomy as a Spanish ally and protectorate. The Incas used powerful magic and alien supertechnology to annihilate would-be conquerors.
13th Jul '15 11:31:40 AM nombretomado
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* ManifestDestiny: The American Freemasons benefit from a magic ritual (cast by the Founding Fathers!) that causes them to grow in magical power as the United States expands. Hence, they are keenly interested in seeing Texas, Orleans, the Twenty Nations Confederation, and the Bear Flag Empire brought into the fold.

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* ManifestDestiny: UsefulNotes/ManifestDestiny: The American Freemasons benefit from a magic ritual (cast by the Founding Fathers!) that causes them to grow in magical power as the United States expands. Hence, they are keenly interested in seeing Texas, Orleans, the Twenty Nations Confederation, and the Bear Flag Empire brought into the fold.
30th Mar '15 10:01:51 AM Patachou
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* FemmeFataleSpy: Quite active in the age and one of the ways to play the Demimondaine.



* MataHari: Quite active in the age and one of the ways to play the Demimondaine.
23rd Nov '14 3:46:56 PM margdean56
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