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Friday 23 December 2016

Blue Rose: Heralds of Breitbart Campaign

Over on his blog, Tim Brannan, who may be the only person ever to have run a Blue Rose campaign longer than me, has suggested that in order to help make Blue Rose more tolerable, it can be combined with Dark Albion: Cults of Chaos.

Well, I can't argue with that!  Just about anything would make Blue Rose better than its default, of course. When I ran it, long long ago, I combined it with Port Blacksand. Apparently Tim has been mixing it with a whole bunch of stuff.

And Cults of Chaos is spectacular for making just about any fantasy campaign better. I strongly recommend you check it out, to combine with Blue Rose. Or, if you don't own Blue Rose, well.. fuck it, just buy Cults of Chaos.

Anyways, this led to a little debate between him and I on G+, where he argued with me and a couple of other people that Blue Rose is in fact a "good emulation" of the genre it seeks to be based on, namely Romantic Fantasy.

But it isn't.

It doesn't do a good job of emulating Romantic Fantasy at all. Because most Romantic Fantasy is based on a formula that depends on the default setting have significant injustices for the plucky young protagonist (usually a heroine, but not always) to overcome.

Blue Rose doesn't have that. It's a utopia. There is no social injustice, except against libertarians.

BR does a better job of fulfilling left-coast socialist/wiccan/feminist fantasy wish-fulfillment political-fantasies, than it does of reflecting most of the romantic fantasy novels.

Brannan tried to argue with me that it is specifically a dead wringer for Lackey's "Heralds of Valdemar" series. Only it isn't.  In Valdemar, the countryside features places where women are not taught to read and are forced into marriage. In Valdemar, the young heralds beat and essentially try to kill the heroine (throwing her off a bridge) for daring to try to join their ranks.

That literally could not happen in the Blue Rose setting. Nothing like it could. Aldis is a place bereft of social injustices. It's a wicca-feminist utopia, and thus has no potential for the most important part of Romantic Fantasy.

You see, so much of romantic-fantasy is based on this premise: plucky marginalized-person (usually a girl, but it could be a person of color, a disabled person, an LGBT person, or some other kind of outsider) wants to join/become X.
'X' does not allow for this person's identity-group to join, but after much tribulations and enormous pluckiness and the help of some magic animals, an exception is made somehow. Then plucky young person faces ENORMOUS harassment and opposition from people full of prejudice, uncovers some kind of evil plot from shadowy monsters, saves the kingdom, and gets some measure of acceptance/revenge against all the bullies who tried to exclude him/her/hir.

In Aldis, that can't happen. Or, ALMOST can't happen. There's only one group who are routinely harassed, prejudiced against, and excluded in Aldis: Individualists, who refuse to bend to collectivist will and are thus labelled "twilight" or "shadow" as derogatory terms and are excluded from government and other positions of state authority/monopoly.

I've said before that in a romantic-fantasy novel set in Aldis, the only "plucky young heroine" that could possibly exist is Ayn Rand. And no one wants that.
That's why BR sucks, even at emulating its supposed genre.

But then suddenly, I realized I was wrong.

Thanks to Tim Brannan (and remember everyone, Tim Brannan is directly responsible for what follows), it may not just be Ayn Rand who could be the plucky young heroine of a Romantic Fantasy story set in Aldis!
It may be a plucky young Milo Yiannopoulos. That could work too! It'd be fabulous. I could see it now:

Blue Rose: Heralds of Breitbart

"Young Milo embarks on a quest to be the 15000th openly-homosexual member of Aldis' Queen's Guard, but only its 1st ever Dangerous Faggot.

No one cares he's gay, in fact they're ridiculously saccharine in their gushing praise of it to the point that they seem unable to shut up. But he quickly encounters groups of his fellow apprentices setting out to have him exiled or even killed for being such an unrepentant asshole by pointing out thing like how fat people are unhealthy, socialism is stupid, and identity-politics feminism is cancer.

Exiled from the Queen Guard's college in Twitter House, Milo's only hope now depends on relying on his friends and fellow-outcasts: Cernovich the troll and Ezra the Northern Jew, the help of his spirit-animal Pepe the Frog...

(romantic fantasy Pepe)

and the guidance of the outcast seeress Ann Coulter. Long shunned by all the people of Aldis, Coulter  predicts a savior will soon come to Make Aldis Great Again.  She knows young Milo his friends will be essential to helping him overthrow the Magic Deer. Can he succeed, or is his quest doomed to be thwarted by dark witches of the Aldis Trust and Safety Council?"

See that? Its the best Romantic Fantasy story you could possibly tell in Blue Rose. Thank you, Nicole Lindroos & co, for creating an RPG setting where the only possibly brave-hero to overcome prejudice are the Cultural Libertarians, and the only people in the entire kingdom doing the oppressing are the Collectivist Left.

Maybe Blue Rose is more realistic than I first gave it credit for.


Currently Smoking: Lorenzetti Egg + H&H's Chestnut


  1. I would pay real money to read that as a novel.

  2. Actually I said they "Play Well" with each other. I never said Cults improves Blue Rose.

    I also think you need to go back and reread the Valdemar books. You are getting a lot if it embarrassingly wrong. Before my review I went and did reread them.

    1. By all means, please tell me which parts I got wrong?

    2. You need to go back a read the books. It's your credibility on the line here not mine.

    3. Merry Christmas everybody. I already posted this at Pundits site but for those who don't visit

      I thought the article was funny and satire and loved it.

      Personally I'm hacking to an explicitly Catholic (think G.K. Chesterton / Andrew Greeley/C.S Lewis here) version myself but its not meant as satire only a way to take Progressive thinking, which is essentially a Christian heresy and change it back .

      I had to take out the plucky underdog theme and replace it with duty as heavy as a mountain for most though plucky underdog female heroines still work really well. Heck I included female "Vigilants" explicitly to make those stories work

      Also to note, I've read everything in the Appendix N for Blue Rose and probably 20+ books by Mercedes Lackey

      She is a pretty good storyteller , heck I just bought and read an anthology with a story by her No True Ways which was OK though her story Vixen was good and despite an appearance from the infamous Vanyel was handled nicely

      Valdemar while progressive, at least that is the the official shibboleth of the capital and its protagonists of it is actually based on fairly sane ideas,

      They don't resettle people into areas with incompatible social customs , the government actually does fairly little (very basic education , defense and infrastructure with some aid from the Heralds here and there) and despite literal divine intervention and a "State Police/Spy Agency " with lower than Scandinavian levels of corruption can barely hold the place together.

      Its not that safe but if it were a place, its a place all sorts even intolerant mountain folks like the Holderkin can live in peace.

      Maybe Lackey has a Conservative inside or its living in Oklahoma or its the falconry or something but she's got good sound ideas despite her Leftist fan base.

      I like the series and to be honest the entire genre

      As for the others, none of them are as noxious as Blue Rose feels to Conservatives , not even close. The magic system however is boss though True 20 or the OOP Psychics Handbook has the same thing without the baggage

      Anyway Merry Christmas everyone

    4. Uh huh, so Brannan's got nothing.

    5. You do have a point, 5stone: that's the other version you could create. The analogue of Christians facing persecution from a regressive left government that declared them "twilight" for refusing to accept the collectivist dictates of their government due to their strong faith.

      But that's just a more boring scenario than the one featuring Libertarian shitlords.

  3. Oh god this is too epic. The romantic fantasy Pepe sold it to me.

  4. You forgot to add Nigel Farage in the mix (but I won't blame you).

    1. Well, you can't have everything. I'm sure he'd show up in the actual saga. A brave knight from Milo's home territory, when it rises up in rebellion against the powers of the Venisonocracy.

  5. He's a brave knight alright. A brace knight who regards members of his order as 'low grade people' and thinks his small salary of 85000 gold pieces a year (which he draws from the venisonocracy, btw) makes him 'poor'...

    1. Butthurt that Britons aren't slaves anymore?

    2. Butthurt that my fellow Britons (well, 52% of those who voted) made a decision that will fuck our economy and deform our politics, yes. I'd rather be a 'slave' to the EU than to some asshole employer newly unshackled from EU regulations.

    3. Why don't you just move to the EU then? I assume you are in the UK yes? Why not just head to France and commute to work in the UK?

    4. Er, because the UK is still my country and I don't want to leave? I accept that a majority voted for Brexit and we will have to leave the EU, but that doesn't mean I have to like it, or that the likes of Farage can remake the UK as they see fit...

    5. Regarding the Brexit vote fucking UK's economy, I would not be overly worried. It has been a long time now, that people's voting have little effect on what politicians eventually do (especially where their promises are considered). They will probably work around the Brexit if they don't like what it implies.

    6. Well we're still in the dark as to a lot of the details. I live in Northern Ireland and the economy both sides of the border is likely to take a big hit...Brexit was largely supported by English people (of which I am an expat of sorts) who really don't care about the impact on the other countries/regions of the UK.

  6. I've got a much shorter scenario: Blue Rose/Rogue Trader. Your RT team finds Aldis and orders Exterminatus on the Heretics who worship a witchcraft-using deer rather than the God Emperor of Mankind.

    The end.