Saturday, December 19, 2015

Prohibition Mobsters: I reject your history and substitute my own

Disclaimer: Tentative campaign plans ahead. Also, if you are a player in Prohibition Mobsters, you need to close this tab and go read Dresden Files or something productive rather than spoiling yourself.


It started with a hypothetical I threw out to the guys in our campaign's OOC chat. "How fucked would everything be if Germany had a nuclear preemptive strike in WW2?"

Germany back in the early 1940s was nowhere near nuclear technology, nowhere near having the dominance to successfully capture and hold territory, and all told, the hypothetical could never happen.

But it got me thinking, and that's a dangerous thing. Line up a series of events where the world is a much different place than the world we knew of the 1940s. What if FDR died of Polio in 1921, before he fully came into his political career? What if the US Communist Party had political success and didn't wither before the 1930s? What if Germany was much more intelligent regarding scientists, Russia and other facets of war? 

Line up the dominos through the 1920s and 1930s during the course campaign so that in 1940 WW2 breaks out and the United States is invaded by a foreign power. Organized crime was a large part of the various resistance movements during WW2, and it's not a far cry to think that my players would relish such a twist on the criminal genre- especially after two decades of in-game time passing from where they are currently.

Such an undertaking is monstrously huge. In addition to running the game week to week, there's:
  • Identifying things to change about history
  • Making sure the alternate history is internally consistent enough to not break suspension of disbelief
  • Getting through two decades of in-game time, which at the current pace of in-game time per game session is just completely out of whack unless the campaign lasts a decade of IRL time.
  • Determining how the social-political situation in NYC affects the resistance
The big bright side is that this idea will have a very long time to stew and ripen- or maybe turn rotten and be discarded.

Any thoughts, comments, suggestions for historical alterations and ideas are welcome in the comments below.