Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Adventures in Gaming: The Doom of RPGs: The Rambling

A very good, but somewhat depressing post.

Adventures in Gaming: The Doom of RPGs: The Rambling

I will take his word on these things, he has been in the biz a long time. But I am still hoping for another RPG surge in the future.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Spellcraft & Swordplay goodness

Yesterday was a good day for me and Spellcraft & Swordplay.

I got my Deluxe Edition in the mail from Lulu yesterday and I am really digging it. If you are interested in S&S at all, then this is the way to go; all of the rules and some of Monstrous Mayhem thrown in for good measure. The hardcover is very nice and compliments all my other Old-School Renaissance books well.

Of course if you are still not convinced then there is the Spellcraft & Swordplay Basic Set, which you can download for free or get a physical copy cheap. In all cases all you need is two 6-sided dice.

Of course the real issue now is getting a chance to play. My sons are still in the middle of a campaign in 3.x; my other regular group is still playing 4e (though we might be going for our 3rd reboot) and Family D&D night is 4e. So it most likely I might be able to get my regular group to try S&S, they also want to try LL and BFRPG too. Given the power curves, I might make some S&S characters and then some 4e versions of the same one. Spend some time in S&S and then <insert magical macguffin here> have them play 4e for a while. Maybe spend between 5-8 levels in S&S and then start them out as 3rd level in 4e? Weird mix I know. But there is appeal of this to me. Even if they are not very compatible with each other, part of me just wants to try it.

So many games; so little time really.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

The Dude

In honor of the start of Lebowski Fest on 7/10/2009 I am posting stats for The Dude, aka Jeffery Lebowski.

Here is The Dude for Cine Unisystem, obviously he doesn’t even make it to white hat standards. But he gets by; The Dude abides.

Jeffery “The Dude” Lebowski
Character Type: Inexperienced White Hat
Quote: “The Dude abides”
Life Points: 29
Drama Points: 15

Strength 2
Dexterity 2
Constitution 4
Intelligence 3
Perception 3
Willpower 3

Hard to Kill
Has (had) a great carpet

Addiction (White Russians) 2
Addiction (marijuana) 1
Adversary 1 (Jesus Quintana, The Big Lebowski) (neither are a full point by themselves)
Mental Problem, Lazy 1

Acrobatics 1
Art 1
Computers 0
Crime 3
Doctor 0
Driving 1
Getting Medieval 0
Gun Fu 1
Influence 2
Knowledge 2
Kung Fu 1
Languages 1
Mr. Fix-It 1
Notice 2
Occultism 0
Science 1
Sports 3 (Bowling)
Wild Card 0

Maneuver Bonus Base Damage Notes
The dude is not a fighter.

Time to go make a White Russian.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

FREE Spellcraft & Swordplay Deluxe E-book

Spellcraft & Swordplay Deluxe E-book

For the next few days (Wednesday, Thursday and Friday) Elf Lair Games will be offering their (our really) flagship game, Spellcraft & Swordplay completely free.

Everything you need to get started, minus dice, is right here.

Inspired by the earliest days of the Fantasy Role-playign Game, Spellcraft & Swordplay is a great mix of old-school roleplaying and cinematic action. Designed by Jason Vey whose previous credits have been with Paladium, Eden Studios (AFMBE, Buffy) and others.

Or just read his post about it here:

Monday, July 6, 2009

Ghosts of Ablion at Gen Con

I am running three Gen Con events this year for Ghosts of Albion.

These are the official times and places from Gen Con. Registration is closed now, so you can register for these at the con or use the generic tickets.

I will repost this when I have more information

Here are the details.

Ghosts of Albion: Blight

RPG0906270 - 08/13/2009 07:00:00 PM (Thursday) Crowne Plaza, Grand Central Ballroom B, Table 3

RPG0906268 - 08/14/2009 07:00:00 PM (Friday) Crowne Plaza, Grand Central Ballroom B, Table 3

Ireland is dying. Her Protector has been murdered and you are the primary suspects. Can you clear your name, regain your magic and stop whatever necromancies befoul the land? Time is short, yours and one million lives hang in the balance. Set in 1847 this is an adventure for the Ghosts of Albion RPG.

Ghosts of Albion: Obsession

RPG0906269 - 08/15/2009 07:00:00 PM (Saturday) Crowne Plaza, Grand Central Ballroom B, Table 3

There is trouble at the Plough Street Theatre. The Times reports that authorities have found the strangled body of prominent actress and performer, Miriam White. However Miss White has herself commented to The Times that she is in fact alive and well and has been seen not only on stage, but having lunch with her manager just outside the theatre. You are requested by James V. Harold, esq., owner of the Plough Street Theatre to discreetly investigate this matter.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Ærypt and Zakhara

Following up on my previous post on Desert Elves & Orcs, I thought I might detail the region they live in some more.

Ærypt is a pastiche of Arypt, Erypt, and Egypt with Gygax's Necropolis and Ravenloft's Har'Akir thrown in.
So Zakhara was detailed in the Al-Qadim boxed set and I am going to use that as much as possible. Ærypt is different. I mentioned that I want to use Gygax's Necropolis product as a basis. "Necropolis" is actually two products. The first was Gary's "The Necropolis - And the Land of Egypt" for the Mythus RPG. The second was "Gary Gygax's Necropolis" for d20. Both offer me something that my Ærypt needs; a springboard.

What if we took 3rd or 4th Dynasty Egypt, and then made it very evil and full of undead? We get Ærypt. I will also borrow from my other favorite setting, Ravenloft, and use the background for Har'Akir and its Darklord Anhktepot combined with the Masque of the Red Death background on Egypt and Imhotep. I never liked MotRD's treatment of Imhotep, but Anhktepot is fair game! I have some ideas here, but I also have an issue now. My Ærypt is sun-baked deserts and Zakhara is a land of sands, dunes, and trade routes by camels and oasis's. Looking at the Mystara Map, Arypt is a land of some savannas, scrub land, and jungles! That won't do at all.

So I was comparing these two maps. One is of Arypt of Mystara and the other is Erypt of Oerth. The shapes are similar and fit well with the "Lower Ærypt" on my map. What can account for the changes? Simple. Dark Sun. Or at least the ideas from Dark Sun. Combine those, knowing that my starting point is lush Pre-Dynastic Egypt and my ending is the sun, baked, undead infested lands like Har'Akir or Necropolis, I have my history. Plus the nice thing is I am using the Mystara timeline, but about 640 in the future.
Here we go:
Long Ago* the lands known as Ærypt and Zakhara were once a fertile plain. The inhabitants were few, but they made peaceful lives. To the far west Jungle Gnomes and Jungle Elves lived. Along the Eastern Coast lived tribes of Catmen, known as Rakastas. Till one day a great hole opened in the sky and down came gods (Humans really) they brought with them their slaves (orcs) and began to settle. While the peace of the land was broken, there was no outright warfare. The Gnomes went farther west to avoid contact, but elves were fascinated by the new gods. The Rakasta found much in common with these humans and were soon integrated into their society. Yet as the years grew on it was obvious that these gods were not the benevolent kind. To erect their giant pyramids they soon took elves as slaves as well, with the Rakasta as their cruel task masters. For years untold the elves suffered under the yoke of the humans and watch as their forests were plundered and cut down to build more and more temples, all for the glory of the Sorcerer Kings. But even this was not enough.
The latest Sorcerer King, Anhktepot craved more and more power. Eventually he came upon a ritual that would enable him to take magic from the very Earth herself. He drained the land to fuel his own urge for power. The there was a price. The land around him died and became a desert and he became a withered undead thing. The growth of this desert was horrifically fast. Within 100 years the lush green land was nothing but sands. Having enough of this the tribes of Elves and Orcs banded together and overthrew the Sorcerer King. Anhktepot was defeated and buried alive deep in his own pyramid in the dead city of Har'Akir.
The elves. Homeless began to travel the deserts in search for a new life, but unwilling to leave the lands of their birth.
Let the place simmer for 500 years and voilà. Instant new land with history and reasons to adventure. All that treasure that the locals won't touch. Danger, mystery, everything we game for.

Enjoy your Fourth of July weekend!
Just a test.