in the Shadow of Greatness


September 12, 2003

Chaos :: Alternate Inspirations

Tragic Glass :: the Gyspy King of Games
What vision, this thing of Chaos that I behold?


My own Chaos is most like the last described (with hidden vicious surprises.) I've always seen an Asian influence 'between the lines' of what Zelazny lets us see. In 'Lord Demon', I think RZ was more overt to the kinds of Chaos interactions that lay behind his Merlin series.

But I've also toyed around with:

Chaos to the Fifth Power
This is Chaos as Babylon Five, wherein many of the shadow traveling races are trying to work out a future in the joint Court called Chaos. This is at least partly inspired by "Creatures of Light and Darkness" as well as setting an origin of the Courts long before Amber as a "best bright hope" for civilization.

I have a con game that would play this setting designed—sorta.

United Federation of Chaos
With all the rules, the 'holier than thou' attitude for non-interference, and the internal politics—try to imagine Chaos as the analog of the United Federation of Planets. No? Well, just take the stiff folks from the Merlin series and think of Star Trek's episode with the Mirror Universe. OK, now you see.

Courts of Darkness
Set your imagination on 'dense overdrive'. Take the entire World of Darkness complexity and shove it into the Courts. Each House is one archetype from the gaming world. Helgram is all Mages. Hendrake is all Werewolves. Amblerash is all Mummies. Sawall is all Demons. Nemirab is all Changlings. Jesby is all Wraiths. Chanicut is...

Inside each house are the intense rivalries of different politics. Helgram appears huge and magical from outside, but inside there are many different bickering lines of magery.

The sheer power, confusion to outsiders, and cross-plot gaming should make for the scariest Chaos that is yet quite explainable and playable.

Filed under : Amber at 12.09.2003