The world of DINO-PIRATES OF NINJA ISLAND is one of thrilling pulp adventures, prehistoric beasts and fantastic powers. It’s a complex, multi-faceted setting that can encompass millions (well, maybe dozens) of stories, assuming those stories are based around a few basic key elements:
Let’s review each!
This is a tropical world, thousands of islands strung along the coast of a massive continental Empire. The islands range in size from virtual sub-continents to the tiniest of atolls. Volcanoes are forever erupting, casting pumice and lava into the skies, and the dense forests and beautiful sandy beaches hide terrifying predators.
All manner of prehistoric beasts can be found here. Gentle herbivores, often domesticated and used as gargantuan beasts of burden, along with the savage predators like rexes and raptors who prey on them. The channels and shallow seas that separate the islands teem with assorted forms of toothy, hungry death. The clouds above, as well, are home to pterodactyls of all sizes, some big enough to pose a threat to shipping!
It takes brave souls to live in such a place. Human habitation, on islands where these creatures exist, usually requires fortresses built to discourage these very large animals. But some groups have taken a different path, and form bonds of understanding with the wild creatures. And some intrepid societies survive via quickness and intelligence, taking to the trees or hunkering down whenever a big predator stomps past.
Of course, a maze of inhospitable islands, uncharted and full of navigational hazards, along the edge of a wealthy empire and its tempting trade routes, has become home to a seemingly endless array of buccaneers and pirates. Cruel-hearted sadists, impassioned freedom fighters or charming rogues, the pirates of these islands live as they please, gathering together in communities that in some cases rival the great cities of the Empire for culture and wealth.
Some pirate captains have little more than a scrap of sail and a salty, worn-out tub to take to sea. Others command vast fleets and strike terror into the hearts of the Imperial Navy. Hiding in turquoise bays, or spending their treasure in wild parties at places like the Golden Lotus Casino, pirates come from all walks of life and most every sailor among these islands has hoisted a black flag at one time or another. Of course they fight among themselves, but they all band together whenever an Imperial vessel dares show its face.
Many pirates band together in loose fellowships, named after the terrible beasts that share their island homes. These associations are known as the DINO-PIRATES, and function rather like fraternities. Members have access to band houses in many ports, and can share their experiences with different captains. They can count on the support of their band members in a tight spot.
And then there are the ninjas.
In its heyday, the Empire, ruled from the Jade Throne, was supported by cadres of sorcerers, known as the East Chamber. This referred to their headquarter’s position to the east of the throne room in the Imperial Palace.
The West Chamber was the assembly hall for the multitude of ninja clans that also served the Jade Throne. Strewn throughout the Empire, preserving many secrets of mental and physical arts, the ninja clans acted as spies, enforcers, warriors, and inspectors for the Throne. They were supposed to work together in harmony, but jealousy and suspicion between the clans sowed discord.
And so, thirty years ago, the East Chamber sorcerers unleashed a terrible rebellion and slaughtered the royal family and all who remained loyal to the Jade Throne. The ninja clans, undone by their own squabbling, were unable to resist and forced to flee. Many were exterminated, but the survivors found refuge in the great unending labyrinth of islands and seaways with the DINO-PIRATES lived.
To ensure that they would never again be undermined by inter-clan rivalry, they established NINJA ISLAND, a central dwelling place for the clan leaders to meet and remain committed to their great task: to restore the Jade Throne and undo the evil of the East Chamber sorcerers.
So Here We Are
Thirty years later, there are ninja clans found throughout the islands, each with their own curious take on stealth, combat and intrigue. Many join pirate crews and seek adventure. Many of the cities among the islands are home to numerous ninja clans, and despite the promise of NINJA ISLAND, the clans once again fall into rivalry and conflict.
The sinister sorcerers of the East Chamber have begun to mount expeditions into the islands, seeking the secrets the ninja masters took with them. They have not yet made much progress, but after toppling the most mighty empire in the world, can the fiesty but out-matched DINO-PIRATES OF NINJA ISLAND resist?
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