Posts Tagged ‘rpg’

Character Creation Blog: An AD&D 1E Adventuring party

January 8, 2015

Okay, here’s another character creation exercise, but this one’s going way back into the sands of time: a classic 1st edition AD&D 5-member gang of murder hobos adventuring party! Each will be made along the “old-school” conceit of disposable PC hardcore character creation principles: 3d6, in order, with no rerolls on attributes (aka “roll ’em and weep”). The concept here is that an intrepid, foolish or perhaps deviously cunning DM has asked his players to each show up with their own pregenerated 1st level adventurer for a dungeon crawl, and the players have done exactly that without bothering to discuss them with one another. (more…)

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Jumping Genres!

July 4, 2014

My last post was written mostly with humorous intent, but also was intended to get some thoughts churning. Protestations to the contrary notwithstanding, I wouldn’t derail an existing and relatively serious,steady game so wildly as to put something like the Deck of Many Genres into play. That would be a rather gross abuse of the social contract between GM and players, really.

I would, however, shift genres in a game as long as that made sense within the context of the game… and I would also run a game where the very premise revolves around shifting genres/layers of reality/alternate dimensions where the players move from one genre to the next and possibly back again. It might work best with a certain pre-determined number of predesigned genre/setting/layers where the players will run genre-shifted iterations of the same character/soul/self. I think that could be really, really fun.

Originally I was going to go back to the last post and edit it to that effect, but then after my friend Terry made a comment on his repost that was very much in line with my thinking, I decided this might be better suited if I post it by itself. I’ll share a few specific examples of times I’ve experimented with the genre-shifting concept already in games and found it a satisfying pursuit, point out a few narrative media where this technique or a variant has been used to good effect. I’ve never run a campaign where shifting realities and genres was a major part of the premise, though I have done individual adventures in a couple different systems that explored the concept either seriously or otherwise.
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Deck of Many Genres

July 2, 2014

Mandatory Legal Disclaimer: side effects of bringing the magic item in this post into a game with a group that takes their games too seriously or that aren’t already expecting some serious weirdness may include rage quitting by players, blank stares, loose teeth, lost friendships or, in extreme cases, critical existence failure.

Recently while at my desk, an idea occurred to me for a magic item that might inspire far more dread in the hearts of players than even the infamous Deck of Many Things… as the title suggests, this is none other than The Deck of Many Genres. This is a magic item that is best reserved to particularly open-minded, experimental or creative play groups and GMs, and would clearly be much easier to use in a game like FATE, Wushu, Capes or Savage Worlds that can be retooled to new genres on the fly without hours of number-crunching misery. Alternately, a wily or enterprising GM might have stats generated for existing characters from your D20 or whatever game in FATE, Capes or something similarly fast and fluid that can be taken to hare off into crazy land with this thing as a side jaunt. (more…)

A Few Old NBish Bits

June 18, 2014

As a follow up to my last post, I thought that I would share a few old screenshots that I still had lying around somewhere from back in my old NB days or just following its demise. Most of the bits I’ll post here, I held on to for humor value, though a few I kept for more sentimental reasons. NB was a weird and wild place, and I enjoyed it… most of the time. Most but not all of the below are bits of out-of-character conversation. Due to the format of this blog, quite a few of these images are displayed at a smallish size. You should be able to right click on them and view their full size versions, however. None of the names have been changed to protect the guilty.

Below, the ever-awesome ST Keith shared with me something that a player (who was running a Demon: the Fallen character) had asked him via private message…

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Apparently, Georgia’s got some, ah, interesting rules regarding their driver’s licenses:

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Sometimes, a player would post in the wrong window, with embarrassing results:

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New Bremen, Closed For 10 Years?

June 17, 2014

Today is the 10th anniversary of the closure of the venerable New Bremen Moderated Chat, which for what few whippersnappers out there may actually stumble over this, was a Java-based chat environment that was a cousin to the venerable MUDs, something like a text-based MMO for roleplaying in White Wolf’s World of Darkness (now known as the cWoD, and revived a couple of years back thanks to Onyx Path). I played there from their opening on April 22, 2000, bringing the original iteration of Linda Lee in there from the get go, and I had the pleasure and honor to be the head of its Werewolf team that ran the final scene that closed the doors on its final day. A June 17th, 2004 closure was planned, but the final scene rolled over past midnight Pacific time and into the following day before we finally wrapped and pulled the plug, so I stick with the 18th and do the same with this post, on general principle.

On January 27, 2002 I became an assistant ST there, working with the inimitable Joy Nelson and covering Kinfolk and the Media in New Bremen’s Mortals team, then in May-June of that year I was promoted to full ST, kept Kinfolk as part of my portfolio and was moved over to the Werewolf team assigned to cover the SF, GoF and ShL tribes. By August I had been reassigned to open the door to the antagonists area of WtA (I kept Kinfolk for a while too, and coordinated the Broken Caves sept’s sub-team for a while. In September 2003, I picked up the mantle of head Werewolf ST and remained in that capacity for the duration. Looking back, I can see a great many things that I could have done better of course, but that is of course the nature of hindsight. For example, character creation was too restrictive by the end as an intended remedy to their wild and wooly early days’ utter havoc, and the way that Lore abilities worked was a bit much, and I’d like to have made PCs rather than plot more of a driver to the Malfean Quest storyline; though I did try to strike a balance there, I do think my approach was a bit off that center. Still, it was fun doing it and the players that participated in the quest as well as the last stand of the Mended Past sept did tell me that they enjoyed the experience, which I suppose is the final measure of my team’s efforts. That was also my departure from STing in a moderated chat environment, a decision that I do not regret. Still, fond and often bemusing or aggravating memories abound.

ImageYes, I still have that old GIF that served as the logo for my old and long-lost Geocities New Bremen ST page. That’s because I still am the Wyrm. And yes, of course I backed the BotW20 kickstarter. So should you, but only if you like cool things. You do like cool things, don’t you?

In honor of the closure of New Bremen, I will post a few items from the end, and over the next few days I’ll post some screenshots of particularly memorable or humorous moments from (or talking about) NB that either I or others felt the need to save, some old NB-related artwork and so on. (more…)

Dream Journal: Tile Puzzles and Dance Battle

March 18, 2014

Okay, last night I had a singular and vivid dream that I really felt the need to journal here. Fans of adventurous literature, RPGs and/or dream interpretation could potentially have a field day with this one. To begin with, I was in an old European palace, but the setting was definitely modern for reasons that will become clear, and the castle had glass-paned windows with those lean lines between the panes, and in one room there was stained glass too. Anyhow, for some reason, I had to pass through a series of chambers with different flavors of floor-tile puzzles.

The first of these had widely spaced tiles and I had to step between them in order to avoid a large and nasty sideways-angled pounder-purtcullis thingie. Those always ruin one’s day when they’re triggered, but I got through there safely. (more…)

And Why Not?

August 8, 2012

Yesterday I posted my Heromachine depictions of The Fiend. Then I went home and made some of two other GK1943 characters, so I suppose I ought to share them also. The Themiscyran Amazon named Galatea and the shadow-born quasi-angelic woman named Twilight.
Well, here they are! (more…)

Garou Astrology

May 19, 2012

The Garou Lunar Calendar

This text is a slightly modified version of this page’s information, which does directly follow the text of Rage Across The Heavens and the Player’s Guide to Garou, just adding a little bit more detail on certain items.

Unsurprisingly, the animistic culture of the Garou measures the passage of time differently than humanity at large. This article will give you, the player, a basic idea of how it works and how it can affect your character. This information is taken from Rage Across the Heavens, and is thus ‘canon’ material. While there are no direct game effects, you can use this to flesh out your Garou’s history by giving him or her a more direct connection to the stars. One thing to remember is that unlike Humanity, Garou have concrete evidence of the influence of celestial bodies on their lives and personality: Luna demonstrably governs their connection to their Rage, which burns hottest when the moon is full and wanes with the moon’s descent into darkness. Hence it makes sense that they will lend credence to the idea that other celestial bodies have a measure of influence over their lives as well. (more…)

On the Technocracy

March 10, 2012

I’ve often heard it said that the Technocracy are the real heroes of the old World of Darkness. It is true that the Technocracy is supposedly a protector of humanity against the Things outside… but in true dystopian style, they are a protector from whom humanity badly needs protection.

Yes, the Traditions grow from the mythic threads of ancient archmages that were basically arrogant douchebags and the Order of Reason rose up for entirely justified reasons (IE protecting humanity from those jerks)… but the road to Hell is, as ever, paved with good intentions.

I don’t buy the Technocracy as the hero of the oWoD. I don’t really truly buy there as actually being one group that is in fact the hero of the oWoD. The Garou and some of the other Fera try, but… yeah. The Traditions try, but…yeah. The Imbued? They’re crazy dupes working for renegade angels with a grudge. The Amenti are probably the best candidate, but they’re way too little too late.

Are individuals within all of the above groups undeniably heroes? Absolutely. Usually tragic heroes, but certainly individual members of the Technocracy, even fairly highly placed ones, sometimes do have the best interests of other people in mind and that try to be heroic. The same applies to all of these other groups as well.

Probably my biggest problem with the Technocracy (and note that I like them, I really do) as heroes is that they are an inherently and determinedly dishonest and manipulative entity. (more…)

Awakening: The Battle of Cinder Cone

December 20, 2011

This sequence is a cutscene related to chapters 2-3 of The Enemy of My Enemy, the second story of the Awakening Chronicle.

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Joseph Chases-the-Dream rejoined his pack after consulting with the mixed task force of mages, Garou and Kinfolk that had volunteered to strike at the witches beneath Cinder Cone and found his pack alpha Mingan Leaps-Like-cougar, the Wyrmfoe of the Sept of the Boiling Earth, addressing the several gathered packs. Joseph noted that a ways off from the group stood a tall, ragged bespectacled white man with close-cropped hair: Marcus Falcon’s-Resolve, who had been Ostracized. The other Garou present were ignoring his existence, neither welcoming nor forbidding him: he did not exist in their eyes, and Joseph blinded himself to the disgraced Silver Fang as well.

Mingan spoke: “We of the Warpath shall be the head of the arrow aimed at their hearts. Spear Dancers, follow immediately behind us, and the rearguard shall be the Black Wings,” Leaps instructed them as he reviewed the plan of attack. He gave each pack their assignments of which portions of Cinder Cone’s peak each was to sweep clear.

“The Wyrmbringers have numbers. They have high ground, and distance, and they are armed with silver ammunition,” Leaps stated gravely, “We must advance up a steep slope to fight them, and we have no cover other than what we ourselves can create. (more…)