Welcome to Fabula Mundi

Fabula Mundi is a medieval historical fantasy world, with supernatural elements drawn from medieval beliefs rather than modern fantasy - revenants may stalk the night, padfeet may prowl country lanes, cunning-folk make charms to help or hinder, and rare individuals with learning and ambition may call upon occult powers of nature, spirits, stars or demons.   Most campaigns will be set in Europe, though some may venture into North Africa or the Near East.   You don't need to be an expert on medieval history to play. History is the deepest, richest source of world-building we have available, but it's up to the players to create stories in front of its backdrop. Play characters how you will. Actions have consequences, however, and I'll advise if behaviour is likely to have social ramifications before you confirm. Social status matters, and those with high status will have more leeway when dealing with people with low status than with their peers or with people of higher status.   Player actions can affect the course of history, even to extremes. In effect, we play an alternate history from Session 1.   Campaigns in Fabula Mundi are usually run with Chivalry & Sorcery 5th Edition, and players are expected to have a copy of the core rulebook in print or PDF. Print copies can be ordered from game shops or direct from Brittannia Game Designs; PDF copies may be ordered from DrivethruRPG.   Campaigns are run online with video conferencing software (usually Zoom) and virtual tabletops (usually Fantasy Grounds Unity). Players will not be expected to pay for these, though the number of free player slots on Fantasy Grounds is limited to 5 at any given time.   The current campaign is Lionheart Lost, set in England in the early 1190s.

Medieval attitudes and campaign play

The current campaign, Lionheart Lost, is set in northern and central England, starting at Christmastide in 1192, as crusaders return from Outremer.   You can play characters of any ethnicity, religion, sexuality or gender you want. The C&S 5E core rulebook addresses characters from Europe, the Middle East and Northern, Eastern and Western Africa, the three Abrahamic faiths and paganism. The supplement Land of the Rising Sun covers medieval Japan, and although there's no record of a Japanese visit to medieval Europe it's not beyond the realms of possibility - the Chinese Christian monk Rabban Bar Sawma led two embassies to medieval Europe in the 13th century. Characters from other areas will be considered but may require customised generation.   All character backgrounds should explain how the character came to be in the area of a particular campaign and know the other player characters. Most characters will be born in England or Normandy. People of colour settled in medieval England so don't feel you must make a non-European character a temporary visitor, though you may choose to. Player characters should accept each other as comrades no matter their background, unless all players agree certain differences of opinion may form acceptable tension between characters and are clear about the limits.   Most people in Europe are Christian, even if uneducated people are pretty ignorant of Christian theology (pastoral preaching about Christian faith was the privilege of bishops, and common folk didn't hear preachers until the Dominicans and Franciscans became established in the 13th century). Jews and Muslims are the most common non-Christian people in the country. Prejudice against non-Christians exists, particularly after the preaching of the First Crusade in 1095. However it will remain in the background unless all players agree they wish to explore it.   Common women run businesses and work lands. Noblewomen administer estates and defend castles. Fighting women are uncommon but are known - especially to Crusaders, for Arab commentators were surprised by the armed and armoured women fighting in Crusader ranks at the Siege of Acre. Players with female characters may choose female skills if they wish, but are not required to do so. Women may hold knightly estates as widows or heiresses, though feudal overlords may appoint a guardian for heiresses.   Any form of romance is allowed in the campaign, though we will fade to black for any sexual activity. The Church frowns on all forms of sex outside marriage and sex for pleasure. Nevertheless, Church strictures are often broken discretely, especially by the lower classes, and may be flaunted by the powerful. Henry II and the noblewoman Rosamund Clifford had a notable sexual affair lasting many years, and Henry had a number of relationships with lower-class women. Men and women of similar social classes are often very demonstrative of platonic affection for friends of their own sex, and may even share beds with them, as King Richard did with King Philip when they were younger; same-sex romances may be easier to hide than illicit heterosexual romances. In Mediterranean Europe groups or same-sex couples may register "affrerement" contracts to set up households together; this may also act as a cover for discrete same-sex or polygamous relationships.   The Church recognises intersex people, but expects them to choose one of the two traditional sexes and stick to it. Not everyone does so. Le Roman de Silence, a French epic poem written in the early 13th century, discusses a number of gender roles and gender identities, though the Church regards moving outside one's assigned gender role as sinful. However, nudity is rare outside bath-houses, and clothing for both common men and women is generally loose, making it easier to hide one's assigned gender, though noble fashions have recently moved to more figure-hugging clothing. Hawise of Skipton, Countess of Aumale, is a historical example of someone we might nowadays consider non-binary.


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