Thursday, October 18, 2012

The Post Apocalyptic World of Charles Delint's Svaha For Your Old School Wasteland Campaign

Out beyond the Enclaves, in the desolation between the cities, an Indian flyer has been downed. A chip encoded with vital secrets is missing. Only Gahzee can venture forth to find it—walking the line between the Dreamtime and the Realtime, bringing his people's ancient magic to bear on the poisoned world of tomorrow. Bringing hope, perhaps, for a new dawn. 
Svaha is a fluke of a paperback that I got back in '89 the height of the so called Cyperpunk literary movement. Everything was so cool & cyber back then. Alright this book is sort of kinda in that genre. The plot concerns a downed flyer from the Enclaves. An American Indian  warrior is sent out into the Outer Lands ie the wastelands to grab the flyer.
The American Indian Enclaves are the last vestiges for high technology in the wasteland. This was '89 so lets go with it.
Is the book any good? Yes it is for a bubble gum & pop corn wasteland adventure with serious cyberpunk overtones. All the usual cinematic stuff is here mutants, ninjas, weird wasteland technology & all the rest.
I used it at the time for Cyberpunk 2020 for a faction for the Nomads.

Svaha & the OSR 


Believe it or not the book is still in print. The paperback is pretty easy to find & its relatively cheap. The whole thing could be used in the Weird West Setting. But I'd take it lock, stock, & smoking gun place it in a combined Mutant Future & Boot Hill setting.
There are still enough spins in the old cinematic devil to throw a party for a loop. The warriors of this world make excellent fighters & what have you.
The enclaves make a great addition to Mutant Future as revisionism enclaves  of technology & patrons for adventure.

 + +  = an entire campaign with huge American Indian futuristic overtones. In closing grab a copy of Svaha & get moving on mutant madness as well as bows & arrows. Just an all around good time bubble gum & pop corn setting for your battles to come.
 Ten Quick Reasons Why This Works 

  1. All of the existing retroclone fighter, barbarian types, etc work in this. 
  2. The setting is breezy & easy to fill with your favorite post apocalyptic horror. 
  3. The Old West connection allows any number of tropes to be used from mutant horrors to old drive in stuff 
  4. The Enclaves are a perfect set up for all kinds of technology left over from the not so ancients 
  5. The Enclaves allow all sorts of culture gaps & such to be filled in as needed. 
  6. An abandoned or haunted Enclave makes a very off beat or weird mega dungeon. There might be a few around. 
  7. There is enough here with some filling out a campaign can easily be done with a very long shelf life. 
  8. There are ninja's in this & given the nature of corps could be used in a variety of settings 
  9. The whole book could be plugged into a space game as well for some really off beat adventures 
  10. This entire book could be plugged into the Shadow or Twilight years of a Gamma or other world. Allowing all kinds of set ups for further adventuring.
Even though the book has a post apocalyptic vibe to it. There is a general undercurrent of cyberpunk that could be used for Mutant Future for something different. The ideas presented for technology, native "magic" or psionics are easily used.

 Even more information & reviews can be found right Here


  1. Never read this one--might have to go grab a copy now. Sounds interesting!

  2. Its a cool little quick read GJ. I've used it any number of times as a campaign starter.There's some original ideas in there & some interesting monsters. Pretty standard stuff now but back in '89 it was bleeding edge. There's more to come!

  3. I've not heard of this one. Sounds cool.

  4. If you like your American Indian stuff weird this is a go to book! Thanks for the comment & more coming up!

  5. I can see pulling some stuff from Rifts Spirit West and New West also.
    I wonder if anyone will do a Boot Hill Retro Clone??

  6. I could see that working & dealing with some other Palladium properties might also work with this novel. The Weird West of Pinnacle games is another pawn for this style of game!
    As for a pure Boot Hill retro clone? Its something I would welcome with open arms. Hint Hint Goblinoid Games!
    I'll be covering more Delint really soon Bill as well.

  7. I agree, Weird West has some great stuff to pull in also.
    Goblinoid doing a Boot Hill Retro would be Sooo Awesome!!!

  8. Gobloid has done some awesome things but I'm still waiting on Star Ships & Spacemen second edition. They've up the quality factor on many of their games but I think that Boot Hill just doesn't have the following to make it profitable even to break even. It's always seemed like the OD&D side project. A beer & pretzels game that never succeeded. Which is too bad because its last incarnation is a winner.
    I'm playing the wild factor with this one & seeing which way the OSR is going to jump next. Mutant Epoch with its stuff might be an option as well.


Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.