|#1zombiegleemaxFeb 05, 2007 16:04:11||Rome is an HBO series. I would suggest watching it. It is cruel, decadant and very brutal, which makes me think of Dark Sun.|
|#2zombiegleemaxFeb 06, 2007 7:08:07||The problem is, I don't see Athas as decadent. With the exception of the top 1% of Athasian society, nobody has time for concubines and war-as-hobby and maddened lineages of foppish nobles. Everyone is so busy just getting by to engage in such nonsense. The sorcerer-kings, yes, live in sickening decadence and debauchery; yes, his templars do too; as do the most powerful nobles; but no one else has the time for such fripperies.|
--so, I object to the notion that Athas is "decadent" NB
|#3korvarFeb 06, 2007 11:53:31||I'll point out that only the top 1% of Roman society had the time or resources to be decadent, too. But what they got up to could have implications for everyone else. I can't see why Rome can be decadent and not (bits of) Athas. Okay, the PCs may never earn enough cash to get to the decadent bits, but they'll be around.|
And there's plenty of working-class stuff in Rome to look at.
|#4lurking_shadowFeb 06, 2007 13:12:04||Also, Lynn Abbey describe Urik's elite as extremely decadent. Elabon Escrissar used to host decadent (read: twisted) parties for the nobles, the merchants and the rest of the high templars. Mahtra made a living out of it as an eleganta - a courtesan.|
|#5zombiegleemaxFeb 06, 2007 13:15:20||Don't get me wrong: I'm certain sex is a popular pasttime on Athas (it has to be, to counteract the rather high death rate), but I really don't see decadence (sex, drugs, wild parties) being that much a part of Athasian society.|
--of course, House Shom is the glaring exception to this NB
|#6zombiegleemaxFeb 07, 2007 0:33:01||I always envisioned Athas to be a world of extremes. Extreme heat, extreme magic, extreme life and extreme cruelty. I imagined a fat sorcerer-king, surrounded by many beatiful women and guarded by muscular men, while the average citizens are skinny and near the point of starvation.|
|#7netherekFeb 07, 2007 1:53:17|
Don't get me wrong: I'm certain sex is a popular pasttime on Athas (it has to be, to counteract the rather high death rate), but I really don't see decadence (sex, drugs, wild parties) being that much a part of Athasian society.
Umm... What about the Games? Or the drug induced masechism described in RaFoaDK? Freemen have very little to do in many cases, and much of societal customs, dichotomy, and organization are very similar to Rome, making decadence more prevelent than you give it credit. Think about it, all serious labor is handled by slaves, so what do you do in your past time?
Add to the mix is the Templars, they are known to be highly corrupt, and usually those that are corrupt have decedent tastes as they "can" have them. Who is going to say they can't? Same with the Nobles... The freemen would have to be secretive, but I bet they have gambling, drugs, and the like. A decedent culture is a passive one, i.e. much easier to control, just like the games at the arena do.
|#8Silverblade_The_EnchanterFeb 07, 2007 8:58:54||Actually, Rome is very like Athas, just that Atha's "food/tech poverty" means there's less per person decadence, if see what I mean?|
All the SKs (unless they are really psycho), templars, many of the nobles and merchant houses ARE decadent.
They live lives of luxury and power, engage in assassinations, many enjoy parties (where do you think all the bards get work, eh?).
"sex drugs n' rock n' roll, n' asssination, political chicanery" are important divertions because they don't have an internet and roleplaying games, and they are required to survive in the upper echelons ;)
-Knowing the best courtesan may buy a favour..a favour which may save your life.
-Corrupting a templar with drugs may give you clout and a spellcaster at your call.
-Having a string of competant gladiators who are also competant assassins would be very handy, when you want folk killed before they get you, but without making it too obvious. i.e. a trio of 5th fighter/5th rogues would be a necessary tool of the trade for some folk, as you can't afford to "hire out" some kills and be uncovered.
Rome's also good in showing jus thow different, and yet similar, such cultures would be to our own. One doesn't get rid of a political rival with a few juicy bits of info in the scuzziest tabloid...instead, one has two gladiators cut him to pieces on the street!
The gladiator and bar fights in Rome series #1, are FANTASTIC, and for me, evoke the mayhem that goes on in athas ;)
I think Nero is thinking that decadence would NOT be common in most of Athas, where you have small communities surviving harsh lives, but overlooks that the cities are another matter. So, it maybe correct to say Decadence is endemic and vital part of the cities, but is rare elsewhere, hm?
|#9nomadiccFeb 07, 2007 20:30:41||Also, Balic is based pretty heavily on Rome... probably a lot of good inspiration for a Balic adventure/campaign in the series, or in any Roman history.|