Saturday, September 10, 2011

The Jakalla Protocols

Though we had some scheduling problems this week, Empire of the Petal Throne gaming continues apace in the Google+ pocket universe. If the sessions go off today, the two groups being referred by yours truly and Jeremy Duncan will be joined by two more refereed groups --doubling the gaming bang for your kaitar.

We have had a lot of chatter both there and elsewhere about having open world play where characters float between sessions and campaigns freely. It has already worked in practice with the two EPT groups as I pointed out here last week.

This week Jeremy and I met and hashed out some loose guidelines for such open world play, an agreement we tongue-in-cheek are calling the “Jakalla Protocols”.

The Protocols
1. That we attempt a loose coordination of a shared world experience between EPT sessions running in Google Plus. The shared published setting and similar start premises (barbarians from the Southern Continent living in the Tower of the Red Dome in Jakalla) lend themselves well to this coordination.

2. The size of the city and its underworld (plus close-by adventure sites) allow enough space for each referee to carve out particular adventure areas of their own. Each referee has full reign to develop and run these areas.

3. Players from each group are free to travel between sessions to adventure in each participating referee's sites and scenarios. Players are also free to take their characters on adventures through nexus points to other Google+ worlds (but not to bring back iron, steel, or magical items). Because of the particular limitations of Tekumel as a setting, characters from other settings are not likely to be allowed to “immigrate”.

4. That time between sessions runs on a one real day = one game day basis for the sake of congruity--and sanity. Most adventure sessions must thus end at a stopping point where characters can move to the next session freely--or at the least handwave this passage of space-time.

5. Character deaths, experience point awards, treasure/equipment acquisitions, events etc. happen chronologically in real time order. Thus if Matt's priest falls to his death in Jeremy's site between expeditions in Chris's underworld he is dead at the beginning of Chris's next session. Players are responsible for alerting refs to any changes to their characters that occurred in other ref's sessions.


  1. EPT statted visitors from Jakalla are welcome to take their chances in my D&D game. You'll just speak Angl-Norman with a really funny accent. Email me jrients/gmail/etc to be added to the player pool.

  2. My mind boggles at the gonzo possibilities of a Tekumelyani running rampant through Wessex. Consider me in if you have a spot.

  3. Protocols to keep multiple realities in line with each other are fine, but does that mean that now my character can't run into himself?

    Anyway, I'm jonesing to get back to Tekumel after all the scheduling problems last week :-(((

  4. I think this is easily do-able. I'd like to see it evolve (over time) to include meta-plot checks between the GMs as the characters move into roles within the society. But as far as time-line is concerned, I think it would be easy enough to line up; if documented properly. I suggest you start a google doc and share access with all the GMs? Just a dropping place for new notes from each GM, for their eyes only. Then I'd say, it would be best for yourself (I'll self apoint you) to just line things up so to speak. Just my 2 cents.

  5. You might find this old post by Jeff Rients to be of interest.