Showing posts with label WoD. Show all posts
Showing posts with label WoD. Show all posts

Wednesday, August 23, 2023

#RPGaDay2023 COOLEST looking RPG product / book

 In addition to August being #RPGaDay2023 it is also #30yearsofMage. I knew Mage was going to come into this at some point and today is that day!

Mage the Ascension, especially in it's 20th Anniversary Edition format is one of the coolest-looking RPGs ever.

From its leather cover, to full-color art, to the ribbon bookmark (I am a sucker for a ribbon bookmark) and gilded edges it is one hell of an attractive book.

Mage Leather cover

Mage color art

Mage color art and ribbon

Mage color art

Mage color art

Mage guilded pages

Not to be ignored is one of my personal favorite versions of Mage, Mage for the Victorian Era.

Victorian Age Mage

Victorian Age Mage

Victorian Age Mage

Additionally, all the Mage books I own (all Mage: The Ascension, I unloaded Mage: The Awakening years ago) are not just fantastic to look at, they are great games too.

Mage: the Ascension

I do wish I could play it more often. 


Saturday, September 10, 2022

100 Days of Halloween: Witches and Pagans

Witches and Pagans
I adore the RPG Mage. Mage: The Ascension, Mage: the Awakening, Dark Ages Mage, and most of all Mage: The Sorcerer's Crusade.  The witches of Mage, the Verbena, get special treatment and I am here for it.  The Witches & Pagans book covers them in detail.

Witches and Pagans

PDF. 96 pages. Color cover, Black & White art. 

The cover art is by Christopher Shy who practically defined the look of many occult and supernatural RPGs of the late 90s and early 2000s. So regardless of the actual game, this *looks* good on my shelves; both real and virtual.  All the interior art is by Richard Kane Ferguson. 

Chapter I: History

This chapter covers "pagans" as they might have existed in the World of Darkness if they had survived to the Renaissance.  If this is a bridge too far for the history buffs out there a quick reminder this is a game of world-changing magic in the hands of mortals. 

There is a collection of various "famous" pagans, but no stats to start with.

Chapter II: Knowledge

This covers the pagan magics including all the spheres and how the pagan mages would use them. Note it is not just the Life sphere that the Verbena are traditionally drawn to. Additionally, there are new rotes for mages as well. 

Given all the spheres and combinations of magic this chapter is fairly long.

Chapter III: Wise Craft

This chapter covers how the witches/pagans see their magic.  Central to Mage's theme is that each mage sees how magic works differently. The witches of this time rely on these tools and the ideas in this chapter because that is how their magic works for them.  A member of the Hermetic Order or Cult of Ecstasy has access to the exact same spheres of magic, but they approach them very, very differently. This is the heart of Mage. The pagan witches of the Sorcerer's Crusade are even more locked into this frame of mind.   While this means this chapter is the least connected, game mechanics-wise and more like mechanically supported fluff, it also means it is what makes this book the most interesting AND makes it the most useful for me in other games.

Chapter IV: Weavings

This chapter gets back to game mechanics in a bit but also covers the roles of the various pagan "witches" that go beyond "The Old Crone," "The Bestial Hunter," "The Alluring Temptress," and "Dissenfranchished Warlock."

I also found this chapter useful for other games to be honest.

One of the themes I like to play with in my games is the sunsetting of paganism against the growth of Christianity.  This game plays that out, though 500 years later than I typically do. Still for Mage: The Sorcerer's Crusade this is a wonderful theme and a good one. It is not just Pagan vs. Christian, but Magic vs. Science. Makes for a wonderful interplay of forces.

The Other Side - 100 Days of Halloween

Wednesday, August 24, 2022

100 Days of Halloween: Revelations of the Dark Mother

Revelations of the Dark Mother
Time to get down with some OG World of Darkness.  So much that has been written about Lilith in RPGs can be traced back to two sources. This is the first.

Revelations of the Dark Mother

PDF. 126 pages. Black & white art. 

Once upon a time, White Wolf focused more on plot and background. 

This is a crunch-lite, fluf-heavy book that deals with Lilith, the mother of all Vampires (so to speak), and maybe Mages as well in the original World of Darkness. 

This is nice since I can drop it into any other game I like and it is a great background. If you have any interest in the subject of Lilith then this is a fun read.

This was written by Phil Brucato (with additional authors) who is pretty much the expert in everything Mage. So from the start you know this is going to be some deep WoD material. 

The art is by Rebecca Guay, Eric Hotz, and Vince Locke with the covers designed by art director Aileen E. Miles. I call this out because the art in the book is really quite good. Even given that this is 20+ year old book. Every portrait or portrayal of Lilith is evocative. You are captured in Lilith's tale in these and makes this more than just another game book. This book feels like a coffee table book (in the best possible way) that happens to be connected to a game world.

It is stunning and still a work of art all these years later.

The Other Side - 100 Days of Halloween