So this morning, our group of gamers spent time at the local coffee shop having a brew & talking gaming. The usual conversation came up but we came back to the Wretched Époque rpg ;"The Wretched Époque takes place in the period known as the Belle Époque. This is the time and the fictional place where Umberto Eco's Simone Simonini crosses paths with Jacques Tardi's Adèle Blanc-Sec, Edgar Allan Poe's Chevalier Auguste Dupin and Maurice Leblanc's Arsène Lupin, amidst anarchist bombings, the echoes of the Dreyfus affair, the catastrophic side effects of secret societies conspiring in the shadows and the mysterious results of experiences conducted by mad geniuses"
Why?! Because we came back to one of the most influencal vampire films created Nosferatu: A Symphony of Horror (German: Nosferatu – Eine Symphonie des Grauens) a 1922 silent German Expressionist horror film directed by F. W. Murnau and starring Max Schreck as Count Orlok. And when we look at the wiki entry on Nosferatu's plot; "In 1838, in the fictional German town of Wisborg, Thomas Hutter is sent to Transylvania by his employer, estate agent Herr Knock, to visit a new client named Count Orlok who plans to buy a house across from Hutter's own home. While embarking on his journey, Hutter stops at an inn where the locals become frightened by the mere mention of Orlok's name." So all of the events of Nosferatu: A Symphony of Horror take place in 1838 very much outside of the events of the Belle Époque which takes place in 1871–80 and the outbreak of World War I in 1914. What if Count Orlok wasn't destroyed in the sunlight by Ellen's valiant sacrifice. Instead Orlok's essence flees back to his coffin where he reforms until 1872 & then makes his move on Paris this time instead of Germany.
Orlok makes his move by having his corpse & coffin shipped to a castle on the outskirts of Paris & begins to create mayhem with plague rats moving across the countryside. Plague begins to take over as he feeds on the human essence and fear. Count Orlok isn't your average vampire but one who has a deep & abiding connection to the Beyond allowing him to feed on not only the blood but the very souls of humanity.
This will be a massive campaign with the player's PC's getting an updated 'Book of the Vampires' with the ancient tome being studied & updated by the L' Institut Scientifique Pour l'Étude Des Phénomènes Occultes (ISEPO). The vampires of Paris see this ancient upstart as out & out predatory competition to their herd population within the city of lights. This is a sprawling campaign involving both villains & heroes who will have to work together to rid the country of this upstart & his plague of vileness that has invaded the French countryside!
Wretched Époque rpg 'Nosferatu: A Symphony of Horror II The Second Movement ' Foes & Encounter Ideas:
- The PC's could come face to face with plague infected animals under the control of Count Orlok. There could well be all kinds horrors that await the player's PC's.
- Hordes of undead plague victims to cause the players delays, weird encounters, and more.
- The player's PC's are called before the vampires of Paris to discuss destroying Orlok freeing France from the grip of the invasive undead horror.
- Abandoned towns, villages, etc. become the hunting ground of ghosts & far worse as the dead do not remain quiet. France is known for its ghosts but Orlok's plague creates far more then the living know.
- France begins to slip into the grip of the beyond as dead shift the balance of power from the living to the supernatural. Things begin to cross between worlds.