On a whim I posted a recycled old idea, one of the ideas I sent for the old WOTC Setting Contest years ago. A friend posted an interested reply, which sent me into the depths of my Google Drive, uncovering Anthropa:
Anthropa is the fantasy world of anthropomorphic Animals, Magical Beasts and Aberrations struggling in their newfound society as remnants of humanity’s civilization crumbles around them.
Animals, Aberrations and Magical Beasts of the Monster Manual walk on two legs. Examples of heroes found in Anthropa are the Psionic Ape Councilors of the Feathered Serpent, the Griffon Barbarians of the Black Glass Mountains and even the Rat Rogues, who skulk under the haunted cities of extinct humanity looking for hidden artifacts or just some chow. The hunter who looks for more than just a meal and a mate, the herdsman yearning for something more than merely safety and green grass, or in the Magical Beasts who rise up and fight against the Aberrations all heed the call of heroism.
Unicorn Paladins take up sword and shield against the thousand knives of Carrion Crawler Assassins. Dire Lords struggle to feed an empire of carnivores. The Feathered Serpent to the south rules a jungle empire from atop his Golden Pyramid. Beasts act out the primal drama of their former four-legged existence while struggling with their newfound humanity. Deer arm themselves against Wolf pack violence with the very bows and arrows that hunted their stags in the old world. The line between hunter and prey has become complicated. Tomb-like cities contain magic, remnants of a lost age, clues concerning mankind’s extinction.
Nightmare Blackguards conspire with Yeth Hound Sorcerers on moonless nights. The Dire Lords mercilessly hunt Herdsfolk for food as they did when they walked on four legs. Aboleth use their stolen memories of the old world to scheme and enslave. Driders and the Panther-like Displacers pour out of the Underdark reaping sacrifices for their Spider-Queen. Beasts twisted with an evil lust for power gather in their rotting fortress, Tarrasque.
There still exist provincial herdsfolk who foolishly believe that Unicorns are tales told by drunken Horses and that Dragons are myths. Nonetheless, former Wizards’ familiars teach the magicks of their now dead masters. Some say this Arcane meddling is unnatural and will bring the Doom of the Humans upon all of Beastkind.
Anthropa allows its players to bring their favorite mundane or mythical animals to vivid life. It is a fantastic world of high adventure that invokes the work of Brian Jaques’ Redwall, Robert Adam’s Watership Down and Stan Sakai’s Yusagi Yojimbo while putting their textures and themes in a high fantasy context. Sword and sorcery meets hoof and horn.
I had forgotten this thing existed, hadn’t touched it in 6 years.
I kind of want to use Knave to play it. Maybe species just allows you an Advantage Die under very specific circumstances or a special power.
Predator: When chasing an enemy or a group you gain an advantage die
Prey: When running from an enemy or looking for an ambush you gain an advantage die
Carrion-eater: When you eat the dead they tell you a secret
Familiar: Start with an advantaged extra roll on the arcane items table (roll twice, take your preferred result)
Unicorn: You can use your horn to Cure Poison as many times per day as your Wisdom bonus +1.
Don’t throw anything away.
Be kind to your past self.
Don’t go extinct.
Not bad for an off-hand tweet I wrote up because I couldn’t sleep.
Art and Picture Collection, The New York Public Library. “T U V.” The New York Public Library Digital Collections. 1911. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/6b26eaac-2bb6-1da7-e040-e00a18062258
I can see how WotC would pass on this idea, but yeah, there’s a lot of good stuff here that could make a great campaign or even a stand-alone game.
Sure. It was a thousand years ago. Less about WotC not taking it and more about rediscovering it and being interested in dusting it off and doing something with it.
That setting contest does seem to have been a thousand years ago, indeed. I love seeing that your ideas have consistently been exciting and intriguing. True back then, true now as well.
That is very sweet. Thank you.