Hmm dodgy red branch rpg

March 1, 2007 at 12:01 pm (Games)

Wild Talents: The Red Branch

History wise the red branch came before saint patrick, likely quite a bit before. The red branch knights, were ancient enemies of my people as I’m from connaught. Plus they were a bunch of bastards, (read the serpent and the goddess.) Ok, after revisions they were a bunch of bastards, some of the worst points are obvious additions as social structure changed.

The people of ulster and the people of connaught during the celtic history period used to test their young warriers, boys 12-14 on each other in cattle raids. Our tales have stories of us murdering them, their much better recorded history have stories of us being the horrible being-ruled-by-women in a very man-centered culture evil-doers. As maeve was a deity not a real person,  we were also ruled by men. It was old school propganda.  

 At this point in our legend cycle, the run up to the coming of st. patrick we have a lot more records. A lot of it bad. Women slaves were a main coin, and were treated very badly. The culture had decide that sister-sons, and a mans sons were lower than a mans loyalty to his king. We had moved from a more tribal social structure to a more kingdom social structure and it had been a messy process.

I like the Fianna better, they were never our enemies and those stories are about 900 years older when the gaels were still mostly hunter/gatherers. The woods were everywhere and people are treated better in those books. Women have more of a place, and some of the worst crimes against women hadnt happened yet.

The tuathan de dannan come before the children of mil, which were probally the first wave of celts, so probally come before the fianna tales. The fianna tales might only comes a short while (historically anyway) after the children of mil landing stories. But its likely fir bolga and co, are prehistory, tuatha are closer pre history, children of mil = earlist celt landing pre history, fianna early history, then red branch celtic history.

I might be a bit wrong, but thats about as good as i can get it.

In short, there is a lot of very unpleasent history there as well as nice pretty legends. So as an Irish person its a bit hard to ignore it. If you dont know our history enjoy 🙂


  1. thebrand said,

    Heh. You caught me.

    Yea, that game is not really Irish history at all. Its an excuse to do superheroes in something that looks vaguely like Irish history. All the words are there, but they aren’t supposed to be in historical context, really. It’s more like… um… how Superman’s Metropolois is kind of New York but not really.

    If I were to do it more historically accurate, I’d be following a lot of the outlines that you lay down.

  2. mary gilmartin said,

    I’m not sure if it would work historically. Its better not following history, thats what I was talking about. The history isn’t all that pleasant compared to the prettied legends.

    I was just saying from a connaught persons perspective the idea of playing a red branch knight is a bit dodgy. But if you didnt know all that it would work a lot better.

    Have you ran the game yet? How did it go? What sort of heros did your players design?

    Did you consider putting in ‘the salmon leap’? Do you have the ‘pains of the men of ulster’?

  3. Brand Robins said,

    I haven’t run that one yet. I’ve run games in ancient Ireland before, however, and they’ve generally gone pretty well.

    The most detailed writeup I have of one is here: and involves a game I played with my mother in law. It then goes on to here and finally here.

    (And yea, someone has to have the salmon leap and the apple feat and the pains of the men of ulster. Totally the coolest things ever.)

  4. mary gilmartin said,

    Yip. Its got some great monsters too. Stealing from history, half of our jobs as gms 🙂

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