Mage: The Ascension

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Click the links to the left in order to access the resources for Current Nights, History, NPCs and Locations of Denver.

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Atmospheric Pressure

What is Denver? A gold rush failed. Bust. A jewel of the Wild West. Unpolished. A territory forgotten. Resilient. A mining town gone boom. Reborn. Railroad town gone stagnant. And then? A city. Emergant. Industry. Technology. Agriculture. Diversity. Ascendant. History continues repeating itself on these dry plains in the rocky barrens of a Great American Desert, but each time the stakes are a little higher. Each time the blood runs a little freer.

Its nights are no less unpredictable.

In 1866, W. H. Dixon, a kine of English descent, once wrote of Denver, “a man's life is of no more worth than a dog's.” He went on to enumerate the halls of vice that called such a place home: “as you wander about these hot and dirty streets, you seem to be walking in a city of demons. Every fifth house appears to be a bar, a whiskey shop, a lager-beer saloon; every tenth house appears to be either a brothel or a gaming house; very often both in one.”

Denver has always been a hard place. A waystation between civilizations; taken notice of for its temporal usefulness and forgotten just as quickly throughout the histories of both Kindred and kine.

Where the tales of greater American cities may be codified and cataloged by historians of either Sect, Denver is still a place of myth and legend, rumor and propoganda, depending on who you talk to. It is a city where folkheroes and scrabblers of the Anarch Revolt, pillars and monsters of the Sabbat, and knights and debutantes of the Camarilla have come and gone. Have risen to power or greeted the sun.

A Note on Storytelling and a Vision for the System

I have always considered Vampire to be one of the most antagonistic systems to play in an online setting. Werewolves challenge one another and sometimes kill one another over kin, territory and plain ol' fashioned honor; some Mages vie for Nodes, artifacts, esoteric knowledge and quantum tech. But Vampires? Vampires go out of their way to make each others' unlives miserable and at times have been known to swallow one anothers' souls in an ancient Jyhad. Just the resonance and manifestations of that word – Jyhad – tells you almost everything you need to know about the Kindred-Cainite social dynamic.

Almost everything.

This is not to say that every Kindred is out for another's blood, or that the struggle for power needs to be so overt as diablerie. Some Kindred even opt out of it entirely. That in itself is bountiful potential for a character's story. Like the human pursuit of happiness, the vampiric struggle can take on many forms.

This is not to say that the Sabbat are simple a bunch of psychopaths and serial killers in makeshift gangs, or the Camarilla a bunch of divas and pansies humping in a salon. At the same time, either stereotype is one that can be played with such gusto that they can make for memorable and inspiring PCs.

The Beast and The Man in each of them is integral to this, and the intricacies of clan, sire and blood that made The Beast or the life and death that made The Man is different for every PC.

As a cook I liken this to a range of ingredients. Sometimes they clash and need to be separated into different courses of the meal. And some players, as with some diners, don't want to indulge in certain meals.

Other times clashing flavors make for a perfect match, despite their differences, and it is those differences that make them the sweet and sour sauce or chocolate covered pretzel that many a wondrous late-night-into-early-morning scene is composed of. That is to say, it may end with all of them getting eaten. But I'll be sure to ring the dinner bell when things are going to get dangerous.

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