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[Let's Read] Deadlands Back East: the South


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I believe the Reckoners may hate all humans equally but encourage human hate because that is just how they grow their garden.

King Snarf

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I believe the Reckoners may hate all humans equally but encourage human hate because that is just how they grow their garden.
Hate is good, but remember that more than anything else, the Reckoners feed on fear, and they like subtle, from the shadows terror best. So, blacks being free but having this constant (and not at all unreasonable, considering the Knights of the Golden Circle) fear that it could be taken away just like that? The Reckoners quite literally eat that up.

Oddsod Blok'ed

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My disclaimer: I never played Deadlands, but I always found the premise kind of neat - freakshow horror Western stuff. On the other hand, I lost a lot of enthusiasm for the idea when I found out that at least some of the writers were big fans of the Confederacy and engaged in a lot of Confederate apologism. No matter what their white guy ass covering was in 1999, it was offensive bullshit then and it's offensive bullshit now - and I'm a white guy who was raised in North Carolina and had an ancestor in Sherman's Army.

So when someone decided to review the book I figured was most likely to be, uh, problematic, I thought I'd look in and see how bad it was. Yikes.

It doesn't seem like they included Abraham Galloway as an NPC, which was/is a huge oversight for them, even in the comparatively rich North Carolina chapter.

I find the Deadlands Noir concept that the South wouldn't have Prohibition hilarious, as, to quote from Google "In the United States, the states with the highest number of dry counties include Arkansas, Georgia, Kansas, Kentucky, Mississippi, South Dakota, Tennessee and Texas. Kansas, Mississippi, and Tennessee are the three states that are wholly dry by default. "
Yeah, especially because the city of Atlanta actually implemented Prohibition in something like 1886. For a variety of reasons (not the least of which was them allowing people to sell and consume "medicinal" whiskey) this didn't last very long. Plus there are still a couple of counties in western North Carolina that are dry counties. The Tennessee county that the Jack Daniels distillery is in is a famously dry county. Mississippi and Alabama banned homebrewing until something like 2013. The idea that Southerners wouldn't have Prohibition is amazingly stupid and ignores a lot of easy history - even in 1999.

Did this book cover patent medicines at all? Coca-Cola was invented by a Confederate General and they only took the cocaine out of it when it got so cheap that black people could afford it and the rich whites who previously thought Coca-Cola was an "intellectual" beverage got upset and started rolling out the "black beast cokefiend rapist" stereotype.

The solution in our timeline was generally sharecropping.
Assisted by the Black Codes and everything else implemented from 1865 until the modern day - occasionally hampered by things like the Civil and Voting Rights Acts, but also occasionally assisted by idiotic Supreme Court decisions like Shelby County v. Holder.

I can very easily see said slave-owners turning to dark magic as a means of averting God's judgment, like say vampirism. An alternate Bayou Vermilion of white vampire slavers who contacted evil Vodoun spirits to profit off of undead labor while living in their old estates would make a great villainous organization.
Or you could steal the premise from Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter of vampires being huge fans of slavery as a way to ensure an endless supply of human blood that other humans don't care about.

Marshal’s Territory: In the world of Deadlands, the white colonists went inland to live among the Croatoan tribes to survive and intermarried among them. However, their memories of the colonists who left them became bitter:
Considering the ongoing racial/bureaucratic issues about whether or not the Lumbee tribe counts as Native people, I'm not a huge fan of this "degenerate white-hating half-breed" schtick.

Hangmen are the reanimated corpses of people whose bodies were lynched and left to rot, their eyes bulging and heads lolling off to an unnatural angle. Hangmen are immune to normal damage, and can use their own ropes to strangle targets. The only way of killing one for good is to tie and force its rope-weapon around its neck in a wrestling hand-to-hand combat task.
This, however, might be the single most horribly racist thing that nobody else in-thread seems to have mentioned, even in a book with a shitload of racist and classist stereotypes. Considering how an awful lot of if not most lynching victims in real life were black guys, many of whom were murdered for things like trying to vote or not being sufficiently subservient to white guys, the way to kill off this particular monster is to finish lynching them. Like...hang on, so the evil creature was originally a black guy who was hung from a tree because he tried to cast a vote, but in order for the good guys to get rid of the evil monster, they have to finish lynching him. I have problems with this.

And yeah, the "John Brown is an evil warmonger" is the icing on top of the preposterously racist, classist, historically ignorant Confederate apologia cake I expected this book to be.

Using the South as a racist, horror-filled wasteland full of bad guys and villains is the only appropriate thing to do in this kind of game if you insist on maintaining it as a separate country.
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Silver Shamrock

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I can very easily see said slave-owners turning to dark magic as a means of averting God's judgment, like say vampirism. An alternate Bayou Vermilion of white vampire slavers who contacted evil Vodoun spirits to profit off of undead labor while living in their old estates would make a great villainous organization.
Except now you're imposing value judgments on what is a living breathing and above all else African-American religion. Do Vodoun, Voudou, or Voodoo* actually even have evil spirits?

* Vodoun / Voudou / Voodoo are actually quite distinct belief systems (I mean, the last one isn't technically a belief system; I'd classify "voodoo" as the Hollywood Version of the faith, Voudou as the actual belief system, and I'm pretty sure Vodoun is the West African belief system that fed into the syncretistic elements of Voudou.

Editing to add: I am not an expert on Voudou by any means. The little research I did on the religion basically convinced me that I have no right to talk authoritatively about it. I just know that "common knowledge" about Voudou is grossly incorrect on multiple fronts).

Seriously, I cannot recommend Hoodoo Blues for research purposes enough. It goes into quite thorough detail about folk tales of the South, makes a clear distinction between hoodoo and voodoo, and frankly and boldly addresses the issues of race and ancestry. It almost gets apologetic around Confederate paraphernalia (and I'd love to hear the opinion of someone more authoritative on that subject than I), but is otherwise a Damn Good Read. Terrible ruleset, but the subject matter is amazing.

King Snarf

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In Deadlands, evil "voodoo" actually contacts, surprise, the Reckoners. Regular voodoo contacts the loa, who have Rada and Petro aspects.

Silver Shamrock

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In Deadlands, evil "voodoo" actually contacts, surprise, the Reckoners. Regular voodoo contacts the loa, who have Rada and Petro aspects.
Which, if I'm remembering rightly, puts Deadlands' version firmly at the "voodoo" end of the scale I introduced: the whole petro/rada thing isn't actually a thing in Voudou.

Wait, hang on a second ... ah! Here it is - a link to an AMA on reddit about Voudou (although I'm kind of derailing the thread a little bit at this point)


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Silver Shamrock Silver Shamrock : My intent was to focus on the aforementioned "left-handed" selfish magicians as opposed to the Vodoun in general. But the AMA is a very helpful link, and would probably befit more research before inserting into a campaign willy-nilly.

Anyway, I've got one more present for all you swell readers!

6. Mutants & Masterminds: Wars for Freedom

You might notice that this picture has a different art style, and that’s no coincidence. This is a snapshot from another book by another publisher for another game line: Worlds of Freedom for Mutants & Masterminds. The general idea for said sourcebook is adapting the “omniverse” concept of superhero comics to handle parallel Earths, different time periods, and dimensions along with sample chapters for the default Freedomverse setting for Mutants & Masterminds. Wars for Freedom details advice, tropes, and sample superhero teams for games set during the American Revolution and American Civil War.

Said chapter is also written by Christopher McGlothlin, the same Neo-Confederate author who helped write Back East: the South. Although I owned this book back in 2007, reading the Deadlands product reminded me of this. I figured that it’s a worthy inclusion of the same ideological mindset and authorial bias, but in a different game line.

Freedom Fighters

Freedom City had a humble beginning as a British colony on the East Coast. Like many other colonists angry at British rule, the city lent its support to the Revolution. The British Navy began a brutal occupation of the city, but were eventually beaten back in 1779 by many brave souls and 3 ur-superheroes.

Major Joseph Clark was the son of an indentured servant who learned how to fight from the neighboring Happanuk Indians. He took his knowledge of guerilla tactics into organizing the Freedom militia into skilled, brave warriors. During the Revolution he went on to perform many great deeds, and his routing of a hundred Hessian mercenaries with only a dozen soldiers is something every schoolchild of Freedom City learns early on in history class. After the war Major Clark retired to a quiet life on a farm, appearing in public only once during the War of 1812 to wish the troops Godspeed, and died in his sleep on the 4th of July.

Lady Liberty I: A bit of Freedom City metaplot: the Spirit of Liberty is an entity which represents the idealized form of US values, what the country’s people could be rather than what they are at the moment. Life, liberty, the pursuit of happiness, and all that good stuff. The entity passes on its powers to mortals it feels can best make use of them, and as such the Lady Liberty title has been a multi-generational legacy.

The original Lady Liberty was a woman by the name of Elizabeth Forester who donned a red, white, and blue costume and domino mask to conceal her identity when fighting British soldiers. In fact, her husband’s execution from a mock show trial by British port authorities set her on the path to a more fair and just world. She became a steadfast companion of Major Joseph Clark, but grief over her late husband prevented their relationship from progressing into anything other than platonic.

Minuteman I: The first Minuteman was Captain Isaiah Hawthorne of the Continental Army, who gained the powers of super-strength after saving Happanuks from a massacre by colonists. To reward his deeds, the tribe gave him a rare manaka root plant to eat. With superhuman strength, speed, and endurance he proved a valuable asset in the war, as long as he had a dose of manaka to power himself up. He wore a costume to avoid being identified and thus compromising the secret, and his frequent absences during his Minuteman intervals put his normal career perilously close to a court-martial.

The Viscountess: Lady Samantha, the Sixth Viscountess Savory of Sudbury, is our sole villain for the American Revolution era. She’s basically an evil non-powered Wonder Women: she’s into S&M, uses a whip as her primary weapon, and heavily relies on seduction and blackmail to get what she wants. Her archenemy was Joseph Clark, who earned her undying enmity as one of the few men who wouldn’t sleep with her. After the American Revolution she began to fall from grace: some say she ended up in a loveless marriage and raised 3 daughters to follow in her footsteps, others say she eventually ended up in an asylum for “the ailments of Venus,” which was a real-world made-up mental illness for women who expressed an interest in sex.

Statwise the four characters above are Power Levels 5 to 6, which in Mutants & Masterminds terms means they’re “peak human” levels of power: a SWAT Officer is PL 6, a typical gangster PL 3, and the default superhuman PL 10. Only the Minuteman has an actual superpower, with the other three Badass Normals specializing in being well-skilled with a variety of mundane abilities and knowledge.

The Late Unpleasantness

Let’s face it guys and gals, this is the one you’ve all been waiting for, the section covering the American Civil War! It has a lot more content with two full-fledged superhero teams. At this point in history we get the lowdown on 1860s Freedom City: the place was an abolitionist stronghold with slavery banned within its environs. But when the Civil War broke out half the populace was divided because a lot of these otherwise abolitionist types wondered what right they had to “kill the Southerners who democratically voted to leave it.” The federal government’s broken promises to bolster Freedom’s economy and dredge the silting Centery Narrows made many citizens angry enough to join the Confederacy.

The Patriot Regiment

The remainder of this chapter focuses on two superteams, known contemporarily as “mystery men” for their strange powers. The Patriot Regiment fought for the Union, formed by Abraham Lincoln himself, securing many important Northern victories against all manner of menaces in and out of Rebel uniform.

Minuteman II: The superpowers from the manaka roots were heritable in nature, and passed on down the bloodline to Joseph Hawthorne. The powers manifested as super-speed as well as a preternatural “sixth sense” which helped him predict events in the near-future. Although he answered the fall of duty, the chaos and bloodshed of war tortured him with scenario after scenario of his friends’ and comrades’ inevitable deaths. He was discharged from his unit for mental trauma, only to become a masked mystery man in the new Patriot Regiment by donning the garb of his great-grandfather as an icon of the Revolution. The assassination of Abraham Lincoln was the final straw for him. Able to see it but unable to prevent it, he burned his costume and took the secret of his legacy to the grave.

Goliath: Incredibly strong but with the mind of a child, Columbia saved this unknown man from a lynch mob for an “unspeakable crime.” His sheer might was put to use in the Patriot Regiment, but he was a loose cannon who distrusted all of the others, at times expressing wildly swinging moods with childlike temper tantrums. He came to an end during the siege of Richmond, when Columbia discovered him in “the commission of an unspeakable act” which I presume to be either rape or killing children. She regretfully snapped his neck, even as he begged for forgiveness.

The Ironclad: This three foot tall man would be a villainous mad scientist in another time and place, but his sheer arrogance and prejudice against the unenlightened Confederacy drove him to join the Patriot Regiment to show onlookers the wonders of SCIENCE. His custom steam-powered warsuit let him participate in battle, and it was common for many people to assume that there was an unnamed test pilot in there. Most people were unable to believe that such a short person could be a great soldier. His post-war fate is unknown, beyond traveling west for new research projects.

Pathfinder: Steven Mullray inherited a superpower which made all five of his senses more powerful than the normal human limits, and such stimuli made his life one of toil. He personally believed that this was divine retribution for his ancestor’s sins, so he became an Abolitionist and Underground Railroad conductor as a means of repentance. Even more so when he heard the horror stories from escaped slaves themselves. He finally joined the Patriot Regiment after the Emancipation Proclamation was passed, previously viewing Lincoln as too soft on the Peculiar Institution. After the war he fought against the KKK and violent racists during the Reconstruction Era, but over the years his condition worsened to the point that he committed suicide to free himself from the overwhelming stimuli.

The Sharpshooter: Nicole Winchester’s husband died during the Battle of Manassas, putting her on the path to vengeance. She disguised herself as a man to join the Union Army, becoming the most feared sharpshooter in her unit. She was eventually court-martialed for letting her vendetta against all Confederates get in the way of good judgment, but her talents did not go unnoticed and soon was recruited into the Patriot Regiment. Also a mistress of disguise, she carried out orders without fail as long as they involved killing a Rebel soldier. After the war she left her team without saying goodbye, heading down South armed with but just a rifle.

Lion-Man: The Patriot Regiment’s token angry black man, Daniel was a slave in Missouri whose powers manifested after being tortured by his master. After killing him and heading North to freedom via Pathfinder’s aid, he joined the Liberators. This super-team of African-Americans were formed by Frederick Douglass to kill slavers and free their brethren in bondage. Daniel was highly skilled, but his bloodlust creeped out his other team members who “wanted to set a less threatening example.”

Errr...come on guys, you’re armed black people with superpowers killing slave-owners. Your mere existence is threatening to the dominant power structure as is!

When Abraham Lincoln recruited the Liberators for the war, Daniel felt singled out for some reason and joined Pathfinder in the Patriot Regiment. He became the teammate willing to do the dirtiest work:

Daniel coolly accepted inhumanity as a part of life, having known little else, and he carried out the often horrific duties of war without flinching. He was reliable under the toughest of circumstances, and in wartime, there’s no better thing to be.
He was a trusted member, if not necessarily a likeable person. After war’s end he disappeared much like Sharpshooter, heading off to find more battles to fight.

So if you haven’t noticed, just about every team member of the Patriot Regiment is basically an anti-hero, Pathfinder excepted. Now how do they compare to the Confederate super-team I wonder?

Knights of the Confederacy

Though outnumbered by the Patriot Regiment, the Liberators, and other mystery men fighting for the Union, the Knights of the Confederacy were able to stave off their country’s defeat for four long years. Courage and cunning were the team’s greatest assets, and they served the Knights well in their shadowy war with the Union’s super-agents. Though theirs was ultimately a Lost Cause, the Knights proved that glory, honor, and valor are not exclusively the victor’s province.
I thought as much.

Achilles: Achilles was found stumbling naked in the woods of Tennessee without knowledge of his origins, and grew up contented on a farm. He joined the Confederate army, impressing many as he single-handedly took on legions of Union soldiers, immune to bullets. This deed caused him to join the Knights of the Confederacy, dubbed Achilles for his seeming invulnerability. He’s also the first character here who is a non-conflicted, non-bloodthirsty good guy:

Powerful as he was, his most remarkable traits were his innate goodness and sense of mercy, even in a time of war.

His virtue faltered only once, when Lee’s surrender at Appomattox and the atrocities of Sherman’s March pushed him over the edge. Michael resolved to throw himself into the blue ranks just as he’d done at the war’s beginning, only this time he’d drown the Yankee soldiers in their own blood. Before he could do so, however, Michael disappeared. Not long after that, some strangely clothed visitors told his friends “Mik-El” was one of them, lost in the outside world, and that he was now home among his people, leaving behind only a legend.
Fun Fact: Achilles’ dubious origins spawned a minor number of fan theories, as well as a minor flame war on the Green Ronin forums regarding the presumption that he was actually an angel in an earlier draft, thus meaning that God in the setting took the side of slavers.

The Fouke Monster: A member of the rare skunk apes, the existence of said creatures became fact when one of them was saved from frightened Union soldiers near the town of Fouke. Grateful to the Knights which rescued him but only able to express this in grunts, his mystical powers to teleport between swamps for speedy getaways was a great boon to the team. He was abandoned by war’s end, and with a single tear for his absent friends he returned to his marshy homeland.

The Mermaid: Found adrift at sea as a baby, Varina Beaulieu was actually a member of the undersea race of Atlanteans. She did not find out about her true nature, so she joined the Confederate Army to find a sense of purpose in sabotaging Yankee vessels with water-controlling powers. She began a romance with a Confederate sailor who later drowned on the CSS Hunley in spite of her best efforts. She became heartbroken, and later met an end in the fires of her homes during the destruction of Charleston in 1865.

The Night Stalker: Thomas Pembroke was a Virginian aristocrat who made his fortune in slaves and was darling of the Richmond social scene. He became seduced by a vampire and cursed with undeath. His own personal scruples made him drink only the blood of the wicked, becoming a vigilante in the state capital known as the Night Stalker. He joined the Knights at Achilles’ behest, the two becoming fast friends in spite of many disagreements.

Only Achilles truly understood Thomas’s endless battle against his dark side, and he carried out his wishes when he ultimately lost it. After the fall of Richmond in 1865, Achilles found Thomas feral and blood-drenched in the ruins of his plantation, and he tearfully beheaded his friend, freeing him from his curse in the only way possible.
Awww, that poor rich well-off man who made a fortune off of systemic degradation and torture. If only his own vampirism did not drive him to the dark side in killing all of the slaves he previously treated like subhuman property. :(

Nunnehii: The Cherokee man Yartunnah Watie gave up his cultural traditions to please the white man, and all he had to show for it was being forced off his homeland during the Trail of Tears. Old and broken, his faith in human nature was restored when benevolent spirits of legend known as the nunnehii spoke to him. When his tribe sided with the Confederacy who treated his people honorably, this event was enough motivation to find something worth fighting for. He eventually came to serve in the Knights of the Confederacy, using summoned spirits to great advantage and being called the name of said spirits by others. After the war he used his spirits for the betterment of his tribe, only to be shot by a Union officer scared of “some crazy old Indian preaching mumbo-jumbo.” And so Yartunnah joined his companions, the nunnehii, as his final dying request.

The Ranger: Charles Napier was a Texas Ranger par excellence. Ahead of his time, he used more modern investigation methods to solve crimes as well as guns and fists. He gained the powers of super-speed from a nearby glowing meteor, and donned a costume to use his powers for good while also avoiding the social stigma of being branded a freak. He joined the Knights of the Confederacy due to a sense of duty to Texas who sided with them, and he used both his costumed and civilian identity to great effect. He lost the use of his powers during the final days of the War, where he tripped and broke both legs at super-speed. However, he managed to live a long and happy life post-war, raising eleven children inspired by tales of a Ranger who could outrace the wind.

So basically, every Confederate Knight is a traditional hero save the tortured soul of the Night Stalker. Even the Fouke Monster’s “uncivilized brute” status is mostly good-natured in comparison to Goliath who may be a potential rapist/baby-killer. Half of the Patriot Regiment’s team ends either in tragedy or unknown fates, while the Ranger’s the only one who gets a true happy ending.

Divided Liberties: Although both sides are part of the respective mystery men super-teams, Lady Liberty’s second incarnation gets a special sidebar. Due to the Union and Confederacy’s differing ideals regarding freedom, there were two Lady Liberties instead of one. I could surmise it, but I felt that the half-page sidebar speaks for itself:

Even as an 18 year old kid picking this up in 2007, this did not sit well with me at all. For a proper context, the modern-day Lady Liberty superheroine is part of the Freedom League, who are the Freedomverse’s Justice League expy. They are a non-governmental organization, which has at alternate times allied with and fought against the US government, the latter particularly during the Iron Age of the 1980s.

Being very much against the Iraq War and seeing its devastating effects, as well as learning the various times said government abrogated the Constitution, this sat well with my conception of the superheroine. America’s inspirational ideals are such that our government is bound to run up against them, so an independent team seemed best for someone channeling the spirit of American Liberty.

But when I read Wars for Freedom, the Southern Belle’s pro-slavery attitude, and Columbia being an ineffectual anti-immigrant zealot, pretty much shattered my view that the Spirit of Liberty was in fact concerned with well...Liberty. My headcanon thus was that Lady Liberty was empowered more by what Benjamin Franklin as dubbed two wolves and a sheep voting on what to have for dinner. The Spirit manifested as what the majority of the American people conceptualized liberty to be at the time, rather than what it is. One could definitely make arguments about the North and the Union’s own tyrannical methods (particularly the American Indian Wars), but the idea of a racist slave owner channeling “liberty” is so ludicrous that I cannot see it being used in any respectable gaming sessions.

Wars for Freedom Series

Our final section gives some short role-playing notes for respective time periods and tropes, although nothing in-depth enough that you can run an authentic-feeling 1776/1860 game without doing a boatload of research.

“Back in George Washington/Abe Lincoln’s Day…” are short sections describing common foods and social occasions along with what ideas are considered radical at the time.

Back in Abe Lincoln’s Day said:
In the 1860s, much of 18th Century America remains more or less intact, especially in the South. The further North a person travels, the more aspects of 19th century life assert themselves. Around the Mason-Dixon line, slavery and agriculture begin to give way to immigrants and industry, and railways point the way to the untamed American West. Manners and customs change along with the geography. Traditional courtly Southern manners and archaic codes of honor vanish, replaced by less genteel folk coping with 14-hour workdays at the factory. Southerners continue to chat about the weather, crops, and chinch bugs, while Northerners discuss the stock market, the wonders of steam power, and radical new ideas like women’s suffrage and the temperance movement.

In short, America is a country divided between past and future, as well as what the nation is and what it might become. These differences were so profound they led to war, and driving home the contrast is key in getting across the spirit of the age to the players.
I find it funny how the Northern factory laborer day is emphasized in-text, even though Antebellum slaves had similar if not longer work schedules from dawn to dusk.

We get some brief rundowns of Freedom City in this era: in Colonial Times it had British immigrants along with Puritan and Dutch founders, with Happanuk Indians living nearby. Some neighborhoods from the modern-day sourcebook were independent settlements, and most people’s lives focus around religion and chores. By 1860 the City grew a lot, with many rail lines connecting to other places. The West End housed a lot of immigrants, especially Germans, Italians, Greeks, and Jews, and the waterfronts were busy with steamship traffic. Being a haven for soldiers, spies, abolitionists, runaway slaves, and partisan firebrands, costumed mystery men were not all that unusual given the behind-the-scenes factionalism going on everywhere.

We then get some notes about character creation, with PL 6 as the default standard. Just enough to be powerful in comparison to the average human, but not so powerful that the team can fly/teleport to Richmond/Washington DC to end the war.*

*Granted this is still possible with an assortment of the right powers such as Invisibility, particularly if heads of state and bodyguards are not super-powered. Additionally the USA/CSA government is structured so that a Presidential assassination will just pass down the chain of command, meaning that a behind-the-scenes mind controller is a much better method than straight-up punching Jefferson Davis in the face.

This is why the characters in this chapter mostly consist of those considered unfit for military service: women, blacks, the elderly, the disabled, and space aliens. This historical facet can result in the creation of some truly diverse characters and allow the GM to address the realities of life during these time periods. However, if the players would simply rather not deal with this limitation, feel free to disregard reality in the best comic-book tradition and go with whatever’s most fun.
Errr...all of them joined the respective super-teams, there’s only one black character, Achilles served in the traditional military before being promoted, and half of both team’s members are (or can pass for) white dudes.

We also get rules on period-appropriate firearms: Revolutionary War flintlocks required six rounds to reload, while cap and ball Civil War era revolvers function just like their modern counterparts. Both era’s weapons also can Critically Fumble on a roll of natural 1 (or 1 and 2 for flintlocks) in a harmless misfire.

We then talk about military-centric campaign advice, which we can basically sum up as “sidekicks are common, codes against killing are counterintuitive, provide mission parameters than aren’t just ‘kill all these dudes,’ and going on furlough can serve for a nice break for alternative stories.”

Overall Thoughts: Unlike Deadlands’ Rebel Wankfest, Wars for Freedom tried to pull off the Both Sides fallacy and the States’ Rights card. However, this is still jarring on account that the Confederacy in this timeline still has slaves, and although portrayed as more “heroic” the Knights of the Confederacy included a tragic slave owner who became friends with the not-Superman analogue. Even though having Freedom City divided and a Union superteam makes this chapter ostensibly neutral, the fact that the Knights overall had happier endings and “good guys” smacks of favoritism.


I am invincible?
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"Wanted to set a less threatening example" wow. Wouldn't want to threaten the slavers, not at all.

Also, "democratically" deciding something doesn't count if a large portion of your adult population are disenfranchised.... due to being slaves. (EDIT: among many others)

Also, what's the obsession with "genteel manners"? Is that really the best, most laudable thing you could come up with about that society, that they were polite*? Oh well, stop, the presses everything is fine!

* Plus, how often is politeness just code for class, racial and gender based oppression?

I actually think that's worse than the Deadlands book. At least, stupid as it is, having the Confederacy give up slavery recognises that it is bad.
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This McGlothlin individual... he wouldn’t happen to have anything to do with a product called Broncosaurus Rex, would he?


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It's frankly outright WEIRD there's few games willing to use the South as the awful bad guys they were.
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