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Messages - Dani

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Outsiders / Re: culture and history of outsider towns
« on: March 08, 2019, 02:32:14 PM »
Heh..   It wasn't till after I posted looking for information on this spot that I ran across a signpost nearby.
Stuck in the ground is a makeshift sign. It reads “Battle of the Pirates Graveyard Geocache: Victory of the Imperial Raktami Army 26 Aug '07”.
  That implies the backstory is bigger than I thought.   :pirate:

I'm pleased that geocache still exists.

Geocaching was an exploration-based mini-game I imported a few years ago. We had a clan of four or five people who went around building 'geocaches' [signposts with buried loot] and trying to discover each other's geocaches. We posted incomplete gps coords on the forum to help guide the search.

One thing that I wanted to do with the geocaches was to use them to mark sites of historical value [like this battle] as well as draw attention to obscure but important characters who've stopped playing. There are [or ought to be] several still around that say something to the effect of '[CHARNAME] lies here. [FLAVTEXT]. Take something / leave something.' The latter so that the loot inside would rotate rather than be used up.

Unfortunately, around this time there were a few signpost smashers around who'd caught wind of this idea and were on the lookout to break these things. They'd already demolished much of the roadways [for 'roleplay' purposes], and it quickly stopped being fun.

Native / Mystery Spots
« on: February 15, 2019, 06:55:27 AM »
There are a number of mysterious places in Shartak [or so I assume, having not set foot in it for years]. This is a list of several of them. The exact location will be yours to discover as you explore.

In the mountain, there is a hidden valley called the sacred space, and fruit trees and marshes and mud and a trader, possibly a shaman as well.

Santa's grotto is somewhere in the middle of the map, I can never remember where.

Shartak's roadways used to be quite extensive [there was a map and everything] and at one time there was a spot dead center of Shartak that was a crossroads for the four major roads of Shartak: the Memorial Freeway from Durham to York, the Raktam/Wiksik Road, the ostentatiously named Shartak Passage that joined the Freeway to the York-Derby Road, and the Durham Detour, which skated along Dalpok and joined the Shipwreck to the Freeway. Alas, the road was attacked by terrorists, and few remains of it today. Or so I assume.

Midway has a ruined tower that was the site of many Epic-level conflicts.

There is the Necromancer's Hut in Wiksik, home to many spirits.

The Ghost Ship lurks somewhere around. There may or may not be a second ship, or even a third, but I don't know, they may have sank.

There is the remains of a settlement near Durham that seems to have been the flashpoint for an attempted colony of Final Fantasy refugees.

And then there are the skullpost monuments, made by the ancestors of the four native villages:

The Dalpok Diamond is north of Dalpok, partly on the beach, partly covered by forests. It is too large to see the complete shape in one screen. It is a diamond shaped series of skullposts that seem to describe the myths surrounding both the camp and roaming shamans. There is a spot in the middle that marks it for ceremonial purposes.

The Skull Throne is on Skull Island, north of Rakmogak. It is a spiral-like square of skullposts that describes the myths surrounding a fabled object called the Skull Throne, which granted power from a demonic being called the Toad God to a series of legendary cannibal kings that ruled Shartak in prehistory.

At one point, there was a pirates graveyard near Derby, on the beach due south of Skull Island. It is believed that a great battle must have taken place there between the pirates and cannibals, or possibly the pirates and Derby. Much of the site was ransacked by treasure hunters who believed the graves contained treasure. Only a few grave markers remain.

There is a ghost fence surrounding the ruins south of the shipwreck. It is a square enclosed by another square, and seems to have been designed to cage the restless spirits who lived there. The skullposts purport to tell the tragic tale of Luton, the first outsider colony in Shartak, which had a disastrous first contact with the collective native tribe of the time. It also describes the aftermath, what happened to the survivors, and a possible revisionist theory of Shartak's Outsider Traders, who met the settlers from York, Derby and Durham when they first arrived on the shores of their new home.

Lastly, there is a map of sorts in the Sacred Space, a small triangle formation that gives the exact location of each of the major monuments, but it is dubious whether it has survived all this time.   



Outsiders / Re: culture and history of outsider towns
« on: February 15, 2019, 06:28:41 AM »
Addendum: On the colonies of the outsider villages.

There was also New Haven, which was the project of a player named Solemn. It was an enterprise that began in Durham and was exported to the island to the north, whose name escapes me now. It should be in Parchment Pages unless that's gone now too. I can't be bothered to look it up, and perhaps it has a new name anyway. This island was not terribly resource-rich [at all], but I believe there were some huts there and they tried to make it livable. It was intended for roleplayers to congregate and I suspect it may have been the result of several other island-wide factors I've either forgotten or on the list of things to be judiciously erased from history.

It didn't last long, in any event. About as long as Dani's tenure in Durham, so maybe 6-7 months at best? I don't know why it collapsed, or rather, I don't remember, or perhaps, I dimly remember that I was somehow involved but can't recall the details, so let's just call it a natural development and move on.   

Surcouf had a similar idea with an outpost near York, an island [not Midway, the one to the west of York]. Before that, it was often used as a staging ground for pkers. He also intended it as a place for roleplayers to congregate, under the leadership of Josiah Winthrop, and thought the time was ripe for a puritan, nonviolent settlement. York's insanity occasionally had a religious vibe to it, because insanity is the handmaiden of religion [or vice versa].

It went poorly. There were few roleplayers in York at the time, as it was started in what you could call the Bronze Age of Shartak. The Hierophant was around and nominally supportive, but to put it into perspective, Winthrop was a religious right-winger who wanted to pray the natives into submission, and the Hierophant was what we would now refer to as a prototype alt-right keke-fascist, and the two didn't really mix, though it didn't come to an actual fight. At least this chapter in Shartak's history didn't end with the first party being hunted into extinction and the second party being burned in effigy on the forum [that part had already happened well before this], instead we both just got bored and quit. I call that a win.

I don't recall any other temporary colonies. The French, as I mentioned, did have a settlement near Derby, Port Breton, but I know very little about it. Surcouf was involved, and FAD I think. Later on, I attempted to start a bar there with a native character with a vaguely French backstory, but found it rather boring. Actually I do recall another colony, that was actually called a colony, but I think I'll skip that one. It would not be enjoyable reading.

There was a plan to start a brothel, which fizzled quickly. We were unaware that this had been tried before and the results had gone awry, so we attempted to change it into a traveling circus instead, but it never went anywhere [literally].

Outsiders / Re: culture and history of outsider towns
« on: February 15, 2019, 05:55:37 AM »
I believe the reason York was so insane was because of the close proximity of the Native villages, compared to the other outsider towns, which encouraged pking. At least, that was the reason to start with. Over time, wars with native villages dwindled, but York's xenophobia ramped up to comedic levels [and not so comedic levels], and each of us who came in, from Serious Sam, to FAD's alts [i don't remember their names, and I think they actually predated SS], to The Hanged Man, To Aphetto, to the Last Laugh, to The Hierophant, to Surcouf, and so on, each of us brought our own style of insanity to it. There's more I could say with regard to the insanity of York, but since we are now in a position to write the history of each settlement, we can do some judicious editing. There's no one around to complain, the slate is clean.

Durham was mob owned, yes, and they also had an ambivalent relationship with the pirates, since it was the closest outsider village to the shipwreck. They only had problems with Dalpok, the other native villages were too far away. Before the mob, there was ah...Ron Burgundy? The guy who made the memorial freeway? Jack Bauer? Someone like that, and he started the tradition of Durham being a corrupt political town. I never met him, but that was the style I was emulating when I tried to take over the town as an outpost of shari'a law as Dani al-Ghazali. After the mob, there was a brief time [and even now I wish it had been briefer] when a pk clan from another game came in and tried to impose order. They would have been better suited to York, and I think they did go there at some point when Durham emptied out. And now, as Neil mentioned, there's the current establishment, which brings us, in a way, to the last town.

Derby, hmm. This must be what writing history from the pov of the winners feels like. Derby had many enviable advantages as far as land, the sword swamp, and the only native village they had persistent problems with was Rakmogak, and even then, only the toughest cannibals made their way through the tunnel or across the water. I don't believe I was ever there when there was someone different running things, but I'm aware that prior to the period Neil refers to, there was a number of clans vying for attention, and it made it a melting pot in an affable sort of way. There was a heavy french influence, and I think this must also be the site of many battles between the French and the spanish clan 'ph'.

For a long time, Derby was an enjoyable place to go to while walking the roads, the end of the rainbow. It should not have been surprising, then, that its advantages would create a similar situation as York, where ease of access made it a place for many unfriendly types to go, and many of its residents found themselves in a siege mentality state, which ramped up their insanity accordingly.

To be fair, I didn't help things much. Running Durham as Dani al-Ghazali was very dull [I can see now why the mob didn't bother with politics], and thought it would be amusing to start a war with Derby using pirate pkers as privateers. To put this into perspective, it was like starting a conflict with another nation in order to 1) generate interest away from domestic doldrums 2) get rid of some pkers 3) prank a few notables, only to discover much later that the other side considered it an existential threat and planned to retaliate by killing everyone involved, and their family, and their dog, for the next several years to come.

There is much that could be covered here, but as with York, I think some judicious editing is in order. To sum up, Derby was originally a very chill place, which because of its natural advantages became a target for various pkers and bored drama queens. The organization that dominated this place became hostile to nearly everyone but itself by the end, until one day it left and the island breathed in relief. The one complimentary thing I will say about this group is that they initially had some very good roleplays - among the best on the old site - which they stopped posting on the forum around the time they stopped being chill and became chilly.   

General Discussion / Re: Hi, Welcome to Shartak - Introduce Yourself Here
« on: February 15, 2019, 05:10:38 AM »
I made a big deal about losing the forum roleplays at the time, and then when it got put up on the old forum, I completely forgot to copy any of the stories. I guess I didn't really care after all.

Just checking in.

Forum Discussion / Re: Access to content from the old forum
« on: May 24, 2018, 04:33:31 AM »
Thank you! Thanks alot!

I was called Mencken for the first few years playing here, after a now defunct cannibal alt. I started in 2010, a few months after the 2.0 update. I spooked a lot of the regs at the time by displaying a freakish knowledge of Shartak's history, which I got by reading through all the forum threads...which have now vanished.


You know, I don't really play much anymore. Around the time that I changed my name to Dani, after a current alt and the main face for a lot of my roleplaying, I decided I was getting too obsessed with this game and took a step back. That was in 2014, perhaps, and I've only been sporadically making appearances since then.

I have six characters on the books, but two of them are camping. The remaining four are Dani al-Ghazali, Gorry Louis, The....


Look, I've got all the names on each character profile. FAD came up with that idea to encourage transparency and I went along with it. If you're really curious, check out DaG's profile and go from there.

Can I just say, and no disrespect to the devs, but this was a monumentally bad decision. Those threads were great - the only reason I got into this game was because of those old-timey threads, and having us start from scratch like this, with no private message history - granted, there are plenty I'm happy to forget - and all of that...personally I'm really ticked off that Muad'dib's hand-drawn sketch of DaG that graced my profile picture for years has vanished along with everything else. Can you give me that jpeg back, please? I'll happily shut up forever if I can get that back. It has sentimental value.

I get from reading the admin post that it was not by choice, but...damn. Like, if I'd known this would happen, idk. I'd have tried to save some of those threads. At the very least I'd have saved: the Dani jpeg, the list of geocaches, all the various bar conversations [except The Hanged Misfit, they can be forgotten], FAD's RCoGR thread, the various epic fights on Midway, The Hanged Man, Aphetto, TLL and The Hierophant's various times terrorizing York, and the ghost ship thread. Plus every roleplay thread up until mid 2008ish, before the GSUC bungled everything. I imagine other regs would have similar wish lists for threads saved; Neil Tathers would probably want his various hunts re-recorded for posterity. 

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