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Steampunk Society play-by e-mail role playing game
Current Steampunk Society game map
Steampunk Society is a role-playing political game where each player controls a faction of ruling-class notables in a steampunk society based on 19th century imperial Austria and Germany.
Surrounded by potentially hostile states, the Empire of Reichsland seethes with revolutionary furor as a result of the changes brought about by the industrial revolution. Each faction has a vision for the future of the country: democratic reform, redistribution of wealth, final security through the conquest of Europe, colonial expansion overseas, technological development, the preservation of the monarchy (under their control, of course) etc. All the players live in the same country. If the Empire breaks up or is conquered, everyone loses. The progression and welfare of the Empire benefits them all, although each prefers they control the direction the progression takes. Can YOU guide Reichsland into its rightful place in the modern age?
Players start as a noble family, an industrialist, leader of a secret society, criminal gang, trade union, revolutionary group, or religious organization dedicated to leading the Empire into a glorious future. To this end players develop new technologies, build factories, establish mines and plantations, harvest resources, make fortunes, increase their prestige, win elections and form a government, or attempt revolutions and coups, molding the empire into their vision of what it should be. In cooperation with other factions they defend the empire from both external and internal threats, dealing with diplomatic crises, economic fluctuation, natural disasters, the introduction of new technologies, and the machinations of foreign countries. Each weekly turn represents the passage of one month in game-time.
Each faction is headed by a named character, the leader and “face” of the faction for the purposes of posting on the forum. Depending on the nature of the faction this might be the company director, the title holder of a noble family, a religious leader, political boss, etc. Unlike, for example, Dungeons & Dragons, characters don't have attributes or stats. They don't gain experience points or skills. If killed or imprisoned, somebody else steps up to run the organization—the name at the top changes but the organization carries on. Essentially players are playing the leader of the Illuminati, the CEO of Standard Oil, the Duke of Reichstadt, the head of the Church, the Communalist Party, the Miner's Guild or some other organization.
Factions may control wealth, resources, ships, weapons, equipment and property. Properties are located in a particular location and take the form of businesses, coal mines, oil fields, spice plantations, iron works, estates, factories, or shipyards. Properties have a capacity, +1, +2, +3 etc. representing their size and the extent of their production.
Even though the industrial revolution has been in full swing for two generations and steam power is common, Reichsland is a backward quasi-medieval society ruled over by the Emperor and a ruling class of nobles. The Church stands above them all in ancient splendor. Serfdom has been abolished and peasants are now paid for their labors. Many have flocked to the cities now coalescing around new industries, establishing a large underclass of destitute workers. There are no public schools. The few orphanages and public hospitals are run by the Church off charitable donations supplemented by stipends from the government. While railroads link the cities and telephones have just been introduced, electricity is rare and expensive. It is an age of industrialization and technological innovation.
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M.E. Brines spent the Cold War assembling atomic artillery shells and preparing to unleash the Apocalypse (and has a medal to prove it.) But when peace broke out, he turned his fevered, paranoid imagination to other pursuits. He spends his spare time scribbling another steampunk romance occult adventure novel, which despite certain rumors absolutely DOES NOT involve time-traveling Nazi vampires!
A former member of the British Society for Psychical Research, he is the author of three dozen books, e-books, chapbooks and pamphlets on esoteric subjects such as alien abduction, alien hybrids, astrology, the Bible, biblical prophecy, Christian discipleship, conspiracies, esoteric Nazism, the Falun Gong, Knights Templar, magick, and UFOs, his work has also appeared in Challenge magazine, Weird Tales, The Outer Darkness, Tales of the Talisman, and Empirical magazine.
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All attached documents are Copyright 2015 by Michael E. Brines