Choice of Rebels: Stormwright (XoR2 WIP)

It’s no easy thing to outrun the collapse of the world.

Welcome to the sequel (in progress) to Choice of Rebels: Uprising. Chapter One of Stormwright is now up, it’s free to playtest, and it’s more than 340,000 words long–over half the length of the original game!

Most recent update: Dec 23, 2022, posted first draft of Chapter One


(Map by @DariaRF)

The first phase of your rebellion against the brutal Karagond Hegemony ended with you fleeing into the Xaos-lands, a nightmare wilderness wracked by storms of wild magic. Now continue the adventure, as you:

  • Meet the exiled villagers and/or nomads of Xaos, and share their torturous struggle to survive
  • Try to outrun a Xaos-storm on camel-back or do battle with pitiless reivers, and perhaps search for the elusive Storm-source
  • Learn the dark secrets behind the blood magic that powers the Hegemony
  • Get your first exposure to the world outside the Wards – meeting not only the denizens of Xaos, but also agents of the Halassurq Empire and the Abhuman Federation
  • Build on your strengths or remedy your weaknesses, opening up new prospects for combat, Theurgy, or charismatic cults (of religion and/or personality)

and in subsequent chapters-in-progress:

  • Try to steer your growing rebellion from hiding, and witness its effects on areas far from your home in the Shayard Rim
  • Travel to Grand Shayard, the capital. Make new allies and enemies there as you engage in noble or religious politicking, mobilization of the drudge or merchant classes, intrigue with foreign spies, and/or a war of ideas through the illicit printing press
  • Make, and take, the best opportunity in three hundred years to strike at the heart of provincial power

Chapter One is still very much in draft form–with a few parts that I don’t plan to complete until I’ve written the arcs of certain characters across the whole game–and I’m grateful for any thoughts you have on how I can improve it in either style or substance. Leave your feedback in the forum thread below!

Thanks as always to @dashingdon and his platforms for WIPs, including moody.ink, where by his generosity XoR2 will be hosted for free.

Questions That May Be Asked With Varying Degrees of Frequency

Where do you think you’re going with all this? If you don’t mind very big-picture spoilers for future games, here’s where Stormwright fits into the overall XoR chapter and plot schema I have in mind. And here’s the most detailed and recent core world map.

Who do I get to hook up with? Here is the ever-popular list of planned ROs. It doesn’t include the three you met in Uprising (Breden, Simon/Suzane, and Kala/Kalt) or fleeting trysts like the ones you can make this game in the Xaos-lands. I intend all the ROs on the list to have multi-game arcs.

I see people talking about stuff that I can’t find in the game. What’s that about? For several years I’ve been answering questions and sharing parts of my plans for the game on the existing threads for the WIP and published game of Uprising. If you don’t have time or inclination to read through thousands of forum posts going back almost a decade, much of the discussion can be found in summary form on the Choice of Rebels WIki .

When’s the next update due? I can’t make any promises for how quickly I’ll finish the remaining three chapters of Stormwright. I hope and expect that at least two of them will be substantially shorter than this first one, which has an extensive side plot linked to an Uprising prologue–but as Obvious Influence GRR Martin™ says, “I’m a gardener, not an architect,” and even allowing for that side plot, my Stormwright Chapter One ended up about half again as long as I’d originally expected it to be. So we’ll just have to take each chapter as it comes and see.

But that doesn’t mean you should be braced for each XoR game to take 7 years to complete (like the first one did, 2011-17, and the second one might, 2017-24). At present, my primary job is being our family’s primary housekeeper and child-carer, and research assistant for my wife in her PhD studies – but for the first time in many years, I don’t have a demanding day job beyond that. I’m hoping to be able to keep this up for a while, which should lead to a significantly faster writing pace from now on.

Meanwhile, I’ll make tweaks to the existing material without big announcements. If the date at the top of this post changes, it’ll be because I’ve added something major like a new chapter. I hope to finish writing Stormwright in 2023…I’d love it to be in time for next year’s Christmas rush, but if not, in time for publication in 2024.

Patreon? Kickstarter? I am not at present planning to start any crowdfunding accounts, as I think the additional weight of obligation to set and hit deadlines or produce special content that comes with taking money while I write would bring stress disproportionate to any benefits. I enjoy answering questions about the gameworld here on the forum where any fan can contribute, and don’t want to have to paywall that.

“Streels”? Where have I heard that before? Ever since I read Shardik as a teen, with its haunting Streels of Urtah, every gorge too dark and deep to see a bottom has been a “streel” to me. I’m profoundly grateful to the estate of Richard Adams for allowing me to use his coinage for the bottomless chasms of my Xaos-lands.

Thanks for reading!

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It’s here! Rejoice citizens of the Hegemony, for your savior is here!

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Welp, I’m hype.

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I kneel

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So exciting. Thanks @Havenstone!

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Yay it’s here so excited to play through it latter today

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Will we be able to transfer our safe from Book 1 or will you offer a predetermined path of choices or both?

Quite excited to see that answer you gave me weeks ago was not empty and the demo was truly on its way!

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Since it doesn’t seem to have been brought up yet, what’s the approximate word count for an actual playthrough?

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Not during playtesting. The game starts with a basic recap “flashback” section – though that of course won’t cover all the details of Book 1, so I’ve got an extra “For Playtesting” page as almost the first thing you see. It covers the elements of Uprising that affect Stormwright but in the final version will only be playable for people with saved games. (Or who edit the relevant stats. :slight_smile: )

My old laptop is choking on Randomtest, so I’ve not been able to get that quite yet…

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Good enough for me, cannot wait to explore the demo.
It shows there is a huge amount of work behind it!

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This is the best Christmas gift ever

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Congrats on reaching this point, I know it was a goal for you. Looking forward to watching this story soar just as its predecessor did.

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Alright, I just need to dive back into some mule wranglin’ to get into the mood and then Stormwright will be my Monday entertainment.

Congrats on this progress, good sir!

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Now with camel wrangling! (Or giant bloated raven corpse wrangling, down a camel-free path.)

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Is it just me or does every option on this give error

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Are you getting an error message?

Yes on every of them

What’s the message say?

This

”Cousins of yours?” The Xaos-storms should turn my tongue into a foot

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