Monday, June 17, 2013

Gods, Heroes & Super-Science


Reading Lob's and Pichard's comic book adaptation of Homer's Odyssey from the pages of Heavy Metal has got me thinking what a great setting science fantasy Greek myth might be. Not recasting the myths into a science fiction context or something like that, but bringing a little Jack Kirby twist to the proceedings. Maybe a fantasy world that's post-apocalyptic, but where the apocalypse was the Titanomachy.

The heroes (the PCs) would be hapless Bronze Age Achaeans who are playthings for high tech cultures (aliens or extradimensional beings) who are there gods. Guys that look sort of like this:

Art by Pichard

Beings descended (or created) by extradimensional monsters like this:
by Jack Kirby
It would be a world informed by Chariots of the Gods reinterpretation as well as the usual interpretatio graeca. Maybe Nereids are scaled (as Pliny tells) icthyohumanoids from another world. The cyclopes may well be robots.

In addition to Ulysses above, the Orphans of Chaos series (where universe creating Saturn is a rebel against his hyperdimensional species that stands outside of time--and wants to destroy it) by John C. Wright would be a could inspiration. Any of Jack Kirby's mythology related works are also essential, particularly The Eternals.

12 comments:

Beedo said...

Yeah, this is a really fantastic pastiche. More and more OSR musings have moved from the high fantasy to including a bit more science fiction or sci fantasy like the 1970's D&D. I love The Eternals and the Celestials and all the Chariots of the Gods quack theories.

If the gods are powerful aliens, where are the clerics getting their spells? Perhaps the orbital space stations where the "gods" live channel the power down...or it's those buried telepathic super computers.

Totally picturing the robed "lawgivers" from the Star Trek episode with Landru and the festival hour.

Tim Knight said...

The Chariots Of The Gods idea is definitely one I've been working on for my own campaign (whenever it gets off the ground) as I like the idea of the PCs being able to meet their "gods" in person and having "gods" show up in cities demanding sacrifices and tributes.

Konsumterra said...

Wow i was gonna focus on the excellent greek space opera rpgs and the ulysses in space cartoon from 70s (my best friend at time said ulysses bad man for talking to women when married for kids cartoon). But its turned into wow my current world in progress needs more spacegods.

Aos said...

The first two links are broken- for me, anyway.
This is a pretty great idea.

Trey said...

@Beedo - Oh yeah.

@Aos - Fixed. Thanks!

Jiminy said...

"science fantasy Greek myth"?

This classic animation may be of some assistance:

http://www.ulysses-31.com/

Jiminy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Trey said...

Except that that's "recast into a science fiction context" isn't it? Something I specifically said I was avoiding. This is science fantasy in the Greek myths, not Greek myths as science fantasy.

bombasticus said...

Love it. Said it before but "Alexander Senki" is indispensable here, thongs and all. The depiction of Babylon as a cyclopean bronze age high-tech complex alone is worth the price of admission and then Aristotle's mecha are free.

Trey said...

@bomasticus - Alexander Senki or Reign is indeed good stuff.

bombasticus said...

Cannot express how much we love that thing. "We're too slow."

Jay said...

I LIKE WHERE THIS IS HEADING. #mythologynerd