Canonical Victorious, or “It’s Your World Too!”

There are many roleplaying games (RPGs) on the market that base their system in a ‘game world’ that is suited to those rules and style of play. Dungeons & Dragons has the Forgotten Realms, Runequest has Glorantha, and Traveller the Third Imperium. Between these games and computer games, a preset world is expected by many gamers.

Yet this wasn’t how it used to be. Advanced D&D in the late 70’s had no set game world; although Greyhawk was important it wasn’t foundationally set as the default world. Traveller’s original three little black books mentioned the Imperium maybe three or so times; that was it. In fact, Gygax was dubious about Judges Guild’s insistence that they could sell both adventures and a campaign world (Wilderlands) and people would buy it. Who’d buy adventures? People would make their own! At least, that was the theory.

Moving back to the subject of Victorious, I admit there is a default Victorious Earth. Or rather that was the game world I made to test Victorious as a RPG. Characters within this Victorious Earth (Dancer, Ironclad, Doctor Golgotha, Kali Durga, etc.) are provided in the back of the rulebook, and fiction pieces within the game often refer back to this Earth and its important personages. This gives the game flavor to the reader, and some possible non-player characters (NPCs) for any Genteel Magistrate to use in their home chronicles. However, I never intended to provide a “canonical” Victorious Earth to the players of Victorious. It is my belief that the best games of Victorious are the ones where the Genteel Magistrate creates their own flavor of Victorious.

As an example, I am currently playing in a Victorious game online on Roll 20. The GM has created his own Victorious world that is substantially different than the one I provided in the rules. Unlike the fiction and backgrounds in Victorious, where the great event causing SuperMankind didn’t happen until later in the century, in his world the Great Event occurred in 1815. Thus the 1890s of his chronicle has the world aware of SuperMankind and has been for 75 years! This of course caused major changes in world events. For example, Kaiser Frederick III is ruler of Germany, having been saved from death by throat cancer by a SuperMankind healer in 1889. Thus Crown Prince Wilhelm (whom history knows as Kaiser Wilhelm II) is not on the throne and probably won’t be for another decade or two. This has resulted in a Anglo-German alliance against France and Russia. The United States never had a Civil War, and owns more of Spain and Mexico’s territory than in our time.

There’s a lot more, but I hope you get the point. Victorious, when you buy the game, is yours. You can play along with my little chronicle hinted at in the books, but you will inevitably make the game your own. This is good, and exactly what I intended. Playing the same world over and over can be boring, no matter how gifted the author is at creating that world.

It’s your game, play it with your own unique style and flavor!

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