Sunday, April 30, 2017

HEX KIT: Shem Area Map.

Hi all,

This is a very short post. Today, I received my copy of the map making software for being apart of the HEX KIT Kickstarter.

This program is really pure genius! Very simple to use, very colorful, so very basic, and ultimately versatile. In the realm of kickstarters, there has only been a few when it comes to software that I have really felt happy with. But this one is the rare one, the one rare bird that has taken the number one spot for being the next new thing for me.

If everyone has a style of gameplay that they excel at; then for me I think its the open world sandbox. But to be able to do that, you need to have a sandbox to play in. And I wanted to make something simple, but useful. So after just getting the download for Hex Kit. I figured I give it a shot..

 In a mater of 5 minutes, I was able to make a colorful little overland map of an area that my players are currently in. This is a sandbox area for Shem. I could have made it bigger, but less is better.

Anyways, here is the eastern half of the country of Shem, North is the Mountains of Fire, to the South, the River Styx. And south of that river.. Stygia!

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

The Story of Adrift: The FG-Con One Shot Adventure Overview.

I was asked if I would be willing to share my notes on this adventure, but when I looked at the notes I realized that the only person who would be able to decipher it would be me. So, I will just give a brief over view on the adventure. That way, if you wanted to run something similar you can use this idea as a base for your own.

There is some background that needs to be told. When it comes to running one shot adventures for cons, I find it useful to help set the mood and steer people's imaginations in the right direction long before they actually start to play. So I posted the "Teaser" here. This helps set the premise of something bad happening to the crew for some strange reason.

Background: The background, is the crew of this drifting ship was delivering a mysterious cargo. They were offered a lot of coin to ask no questions, and to deliver it ASAP.  During the loading operations of the cargo, there was an accident and a container was damaged. Little did they know, that soon after they departed, the containers systems failed, allowing a trapped entity loose onto the ship. A Sarcophagi(oly?). And after being trapped inside this containment, it went in search of it's revenge. Eventually driving the crew of the cargo ship all against each other till a blood bath ensued. When the bloodbath was over and only one crew member barely surviving, the creature feasted. But was then trapped on board a derelict  and drifting ship, slowly starving as it can only feed of the bodies killed by its victims. And with one person left, it could feed no longer.

The story begins as the players, members of a Salvage Crew discover this cargo ship drifting in the void. Needing to determine if ship is able to be claimed, they had to search the ship and make sure there were no one surviving on board.

They enter a ship filled with signs of chaos, anti grav turned off, main power turned off, parts of ship vented into space. Crew quarters filled with blood, signs of fighting.. a total mess. As they search the ship, they discovered various entry logs, by different crews, all talking about how every one else is out to get them, how one person attack another for no reason. There was more then enough clues for the players to determine that this ship descended into madness.

They then discovered the lone survivor, who managed to suspend himself in a cyro chamber in hopes to be rescued, as he was severely wounded. The idea, at the time was to make players believe that this was the captain of the drifting ship, but if the players discovered the crew roster prior to finding him they will see that his picture does not match, and in fact he is really just a deckhand. All of this to add to the paranoid feeling of the game. The person, who already was driven mad will try again to directly attack and kill the players the first chance he gets. (But in my game at the time, one of the players who kinda lost his own mind, opened fired on him the moment he stepped out of the chamber) killing him. (Not expected to happen!)

This is where the Djinn comes into play. The whole time the players are searching the ship and trying to figure out what happened, the Djinn was already starting to sow the seeds of dissent among the players.  It needs to feed. The one rule I had was the first NPC/Player to die that starving Djinn would appear to feast. Giving a chance for the players to act. Since the NPC hit the floor with a gunshot wound in the first 5 seconds of his arrival, the Djinn appeared. The players, some standing to fight, others fleeing had to then deal with the creature.

In the end, 3 of the players who were already turned against the remaining 2 players; fled back to their own ship left the captain and the first mate alone fighting the creature.

The two remaining crew managed to kill the creature, but were left on the ship in the darkness of space.

Thats where the one shot ended.

Also note: As I used pregen characters, I had the relationships pointed in the direction of not getting along with others. At the beginning of the game, I instructed each player to roleplay these relationships as they saw fit. So, given the background character info, paranoia, and a evil spirit messing things up, it didn't take long for the characters to start to crumble. :)

I think we all had a good time, there was a lot of laughs. So for me, that's what matters. Anyways that's the concept of "Adrift"

Thanks all.

I attached my players to this post, so if they ever wanted to add in their perspectives they can, and are welcomed too.

+Raz Kabooz +Jeannette Jarrar +Frank Falkenberg +James Goodman +Andrew Jones

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Writing, Bullet Journals and Summer Campaign

Hi all,

I hope everyone had a great Easter weekend! I know I sure did, from Thursday evening till Tuesday morning I did very little other then play in a session 0 game of  Castle and Crusades game hosted by  +Perry Chalmers from My Own Little World. My first time ever to play using that system, and a very long time since I played anything OSR based. It was a blast to try it out, and I look forward to playing it again in the future!

Other then that, I spent nearly my whole time off, writing. Something I have not really been able to do in the last several months; I have been to busy hosting games! Essentially really since last spring, Almost a full year of weekly games! Madness I tell you!

I am going to share something about me, something which I have been dealing with since a very young age. I will be the first to say this, my writing, even on this blog is full of errors, typos, poor grammar and punctuation. This is due to dyslexia. I am not ashamed of having it, nor do I care if people know I have it. But being someone who always enjoyed telling stories it has always been something I have been struggling with. Its been holding me back from doing something I always wanted to do, write adventure modules for some well established gaming publisher. That's the dream anyways.

It is a well known fact, that I am big on three main genre's; Hard Sci Fi Horror, Weird Wars Horror and Sword and Sorcery Fantasy. And it is also a well known fact that I also dove into the deep end when +Modiphius announced its Conan Kickstarter a while back. So, starting last spring in order to shake the rust of my S&S gaming. I started to run a long series of contained One Shot games of Beasts and Barbarians (For Savage Worlds) until a more solid version of the Conan Rules game out. Basically what I was doing, was testing out a few of my ideas in the setting. I had a lot of fun.

Anyways, about 3 weeks ago; although I have been writing a bucket load of one shot adventures for several different systems. I realized that I have not really sat down and taken the time to organize a long standing campaign adventure. In fact, its been years since I really broke out my journal and started writing.

I needed away to start to capture everything I was thinking and doing. When I dragged my old journals out of storage and started to look at them, I realized that I am the most disorganized (and reminded once again of my Dyslexia) person in the world. Pouring through my books I used when I was in high school everything was jumbled and a mess. Which just re-enforced my fear of not being able to write. I am much better at telling stories then I am writing them down.

Just recently, I hosted a #coriolis One Shot for #fg-con and, I had received several requests if I could send my story notes to individuals, as they would like to run that adventure in their group. As much as I wanted too, when I looked at my notes, I realized again, that my story notes are a complete mess, a series of paragraphs, with lines drawn to other paragraphs with no sense of structure, symbols scattered every where. Nothing but a blob of written characters. Even if I did send it, it would make no sense to anyone. This made me realize two things; I need to get better at recording my ideas, and that maybe some people would actually like to use my adventures in their own games. But I need to find a way to over come this dyslexia which I have had for many many years.

Then I stumbled across +Victor Diaz and his community page called Bullet Journal for GMs The concept of the Bullet Journals intrigued me, and after having a in-depth conversation with +Daniel McLaughlin about it, and having it explained to me how it works, I realized that this could be very well what I have been looking for. Basically the way its designed to work; feeds directly into a structure that my dyslexia understands. Its in bullet form, it uses symbols and it allows me to write everything down in a way that I can go back and read it later and it actually makes sense! So I spent most of last week learning about Bullet Journals, I started three separate logs, one for writing adventures, one for chronicling games, and one for use at my work.

Using this technique I sat down and wrote. I wrote for several hours, and the Bullet Journal allowed my brain to stay engaged with my ideas instead of getting totally frustrated. I wrote everyday I was off over the holiday, and I am loving it! I feel like now, with help from my editor. Yes, I actually do have an editor lined up. I am hoping to attempt submitting my writing in the coming months!

I have loved GM'ing games for years, but I could never share my ideas with others outside of the players in my games. Hence why I enjoy broadcasting my games on YouTube and Twitch. It allows me to share my ideas with more then just my players, but with those who listen to my games.

So, what I am going to work on. Well, I am in the process of "writing" an actual campaign set in Hyborea which I plan to run during this Spring/Summer! Ill make an announcement when I start looking for players, but its going to be a small group.. most likely 3 players, and definitely no more then 4. But I am really looking forward to this.. Its gonna be epic!

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Coriolis: A Theme for Fantasy Grounds and MoreCore

Hi all,

I am very happy to say that I have been given the blessing from the great crew at Free League Publishing to share my home grown theme for the Coriolis RPG for use with Fantasy Grounds, using the fan made ruleset "MoreCore"

To see this Theme in action, you can watch the video of a live play session I held during the latest FG-Con event (April 7th) There are also screen shots below.

Over the next week I will make a small video on how I use the Coriolis Theme to get the most of what Fantasy Grounds and MoreCore.

First, here is the link to the Coriolis Theme V1.5 (the main file still says V1, but do not worry)

In order to use this theme, you will need to download the free rule set, designed by +Damian Hupfeld  over on the Fantasy Grounds Forum. So, you can get his free rule set here. And if I could just focus on MoreCore for a second. This rule set, free for anyone, is in my opinion the most flexible, dynamic and configurable rulesets out there. I have yet to run into a RPG game that I can not specifically tailor a theme too. Its really that good, you are gonna love it! Check out the latest updates and downloads for it here.

So, very quickly how do I use this? First you need to download MoreCore and place the MoreCore.pak file in your Fantasy Grounds Ruleset folder. Next you download the CoriolisV1.ext file and place that into your Fantasy Grounds Extension folder. All you need to do now is start a new campaign, pick MoreCore for the ruleset and then pick the theme from the list. Its pretty simple.

So, for the record. I am not a professional programmer or artist. So it is very likely you may notice errors or issues with the theme. If you do, feel free to leave a comment below and I will try and fix it. If you have issues with MoreCore, head to the Fantasy Grounds forums and inquire there. I may be able to help you out here if its something I am able to help with.

Some known issues with V1.0

  1. Screen Resolution: When I designed this, I made the screen resolution based on my size of my own monitor. 1600x900. So if you have a bigger screen size, the desktop background image may not line up. I am going to fix that with in the next week or so.
  2. Dice support: MoreCore supports dicescripts, so you can use dice scripts. The /coriolis script will be functional on MoreCore V1.39 which is due out this weekend. To get more info on how to use dicescripts, check out the MoreCore thread above.
Below is the video of the game, and a few screenshots. To get a better look, click on the images to see the full size.

Friday, April 7, 2017

Coriolis: Adrift (FG-Con Adventure)

Ill do a little write up on the event a little later.

But I wanted to post the screen shot of the game. (click on it to make it better)

But a great time with:

+Raz Kabooz
+Jeannette Jarrar
+Frank Falkenberg
+James Goodman
+Andrew From the UK :)

Hope I scared the crap out of all of ya! ;-)

You can check out the live play here.