Monday, April 13, 2009
I watched a special on TV this weekend about theories on whether our ancient ancestors were visited by beings from another world. While its difficult to buy into theories like these, I did find the artwork presented by the show to be compelling, and as usual began to think of its potential for gaming. Alien Visitor theorists like Von Danigan (sp?) posit that the picture above (of a Mayan King name Pekal, who was supposedly a giant and a brilliant engineer) depicts the Mayan King departing Earth in a rocket ship, reclined much like our own Apollo asronauts would have been, and manipulating various instruments and pedals. Conventional archaeologists claim this is actually a depiction of Pekal journeying to the mythological Underworld.
The ambiguity and possibilities this art inspires could certainly be brought into a gaming situation, perhaps in the form of art like this, letting the players in the campaign ponder whether the gods in their world were actually voyagers from another world, mythological beings from the underworld, or the more standard, more emphemeral sort of deities.
How about these space-mannish depictions in cave-art? It would be interesting to introduce some "beings of light" who occasionally visit the mundane vistas of the campaign setting, perhaps imparting wisdom, kidnapping specimens, and such, all while keeping the players guessing.
Food for thought, at any rate.