@Wizz - Well, I’m going to take off my staffy hat here and answer more personally... For one, while the individual themes and tone of a lot of WoD is dark, I think that it’s very hard to escape the aura of surreal ridiculousness that sometimes ensues when you have a hundred or whatever people playing supernatural creatures of all shapes and stripes and tell them to all go nuts with it in the same place at the same time. ‘Two demons, a vampire and a dog that’s really a werewolf walk into a bar’ is not the start of a joke on a WoD MU*, its Tuesday. I think it’s better to just embrace some of that.
Also I know us. There are many moments that I take a tongue in cheek attitude towards stuff, and I like humor... I think @Coin does too and I know he likes BIG things, broad strokes, and the “occasional” touch of irreverence*... And truthfully, I think that trying to impose a tone of unremitting and constant darkness would actually undermine the themes of these games. You can’t have just the one note all the time in a story if you actually want to feel that note. The moments of ridiculousness and hilarity make a wonderful contrast to the moments of sorrow and despair. When I think back to Buffy, that’s one of the things I loved about it. The silly bits didn’t make the characters one dimensional cartoons. They didn’t detract from the moments of real pathos, they enhanced them. So I think that’s what we’re shooting for here in tone, and hopefully there will be something in it to suit everyone.
Which is, of course, the other aspect of this. What @Coin and I want as STs here is one part of it, but, at best, it’s like a third of the overall formula. MU*s are truly collaborative experiences, and what Eldritch ultimately turns out to be is still going to largely depend on the players. First they have to show up, and next they’re going to create their PCs and those PCs are going to have their own interests and their own ways of doing things, their own hates and loves, and that is a huge and by far the biggest part of what the game will be. I hope stuff like the Territory system furthers that.
The first thing @Coin and I did was basically to sit around and make up something like 500 years of history populated with a number of NPCs that I have lost count of long ago. There is a lot of ‘stuff’ here to use in stories, but my expectation is that some of it, maybe even most of it, will never get played with. What ends up being important, at least in some degree, is going to depend on the PCs and what is important to THEM. And within that, individual people are going to choose the tone and character of their individual story...and that’s exactly how it should be. But we’re not afraid of stuff is what you should probably take away from this. This week could be a heartfelt tragedy and next week could be tentacle monsters assaulting the college synchronized swimming team.