Storm and Sail Update

For those of you who aren’t aware, myself and Lloyd Gyan have been working for some time on creating a Storm and Sail campaign book for the Fate RPG, this spun-off a campaign that I kludged together using the Fate Accelerated rules and a few ideas that I had, you can find the videos for that original campaign here:

As a big fan of swashbuckling adventure stories, a short while after the original mini-campaign has finished I decided to try and actually make it into a complete campaign book that I could publish as a PDF, Lloyd came onboard a short while later to lend assistance and a valuable second set of eyes to go over things.

I’ve been posting bits and pieces about Storm & Sail for a while (mostly over on Google+) but it’s been slow going in parts because we’ve both got RL jobs and other commitments that prevent us devoting 100% of our time to writing Storm & Sail, however, I’m now pleased to announce that we are getting pretty close to completion. By that, I mean we have most of the layout done with placeholders for artwork (yet to be commissioned) and we’ve sent advanced preview copies to a closed group of people to get some final feedback on the PDF.

Here are a few sample pages to whet your appetite:

So how long before it’s released?

Unfortunately it’s not possible for us to give an exact date when the PDF will be released since it depends on a few different factors:

  • How long the artwork takes to commission and create.
  • How long it takes for us to get feedback from our closed group.
  • Any last minute changes or alterations we have to make.

But we’re hoping to release the PDF as soon as possible, and we hope that you’ll join us on the High Seas 🙂

Engage Smug Mode

Or “why are so many people unwilling to play anything but D&D”?

 

I’ve just been reading a post on one of the online Facebook roleplaying groups that I’m a part of, where someone asked what seems like a fairly simple question: “What are the reasons that so many people are unwilling to play anything but D&D?”

Now, I’m not the worlds biggest fan of D&D–although I’ve played all but the earliest editions and have been looking with interest at some OSR stuff recently–but even as I was preparing a reply along the lines of “well there could be numerous reasons, visibility of the game line, it’s what their friends play, etc etc” a number of responses popped up that gave me serious pause for thought. I’m not saying that all of the responses were in this vein, but there were certainly a number of posts that suggested people who stuck with D&D were afraid to play other stuff, or were too self-conscious or were subterranean Morlocks crouching in basements fearing to step into the warming light of the cool new systems in town. Okay, I’m exaggerating on that last one, but you get the idea?

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RPG Review: Mutant Chronicles 3E

Modiphius Entertainment were kind enough to send me a review copy of Mutant Chronicles 3rd Edition, my review is below:

Fiasco : The Ballad of the Claytons

I’ve recently acquired a copy of the very enjoyable Fiasco RPG from Bully Pulpit Games, unlike most traditional RPGs it doesn’t require a single gamesmaster and is more akin to a group storytelling game where you all create the elements of the story and then the scenes that take place in it. I recorded the audio from our first session and uploaded it to Youtube.

Warning: Strong language used throughout.

RPG Review: Jadetech Black Jade

I review the latest Jade Punk supplement from Re-Roll Productions, written by Jacob Possin it deals with the mysterious, and long believed mythical, black jade.

Session 0 for Thashif’s Dresden Files Game

We start preparing for Thashif’s forthcoming Dresden Files game, and I get confused about some of the difference between DF version of Fate and Fate Core (I blame tiredness):

Clarence J. Murdock – Dresden Files Character

Dresden-Files-RPG-V1-V2As you’ll probably be aware if you’ve read my recent posts, we wrapped up my Jadepunk Campaign a short time ago, Thashif has stepped up to fill the timeslot and is going to be running a Dresden Files game, alternating with my FFG Star Wars campaign. I’ve played a little bit of DF but not a great deal and have only just actually acquired the books and am avidly reading my way through them, it uses a version of Fate that is a pre-cursor to the Fate Core rulebooks. It is easy to see places where the game was streamlined and tweaked between this version of Fate and Fate Core.

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RPG Review: Force and Destiny RPG by Fantasy Flight Games

swf02_main

  • Product Name: Star Wars Force and Destiny Roleplaying Game
  • Author: Multiple
  • Genre: Space-opera
  • Size of the book: Approx 450 pages
  • Central game mechanic: Dice designed for the game with special symbols

 

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Matters of Fate: The Default Actions

As promised here is the video version of our sixth episode in this series where we discuss the default actions in Fate.

Ritual Magic in Jadepunk

In the main Jadepunk rulebook, one of the lesser nations, the Ahlmac, are described as:

“blood worshippers, believing that power even beyond what jade can give is found in one’s own blood”

This was very interesting to me since magical effects obviously do exist in the system but they are largely confined to strange martial arts techniques or various amount of jade-based technology; however the write-up of the Ahlmac seems to suggest that they may have some form of power beyond that which Jade can offer. Of course this could be simple superstition or even techniques built using the normal Asset/Stunt system provided in Jadepunk; recently however I reviewed the excellent Crestfallen RPG by Dan Hiscutt (you can see the review by clicking here), one of the rules mechanics that really caught my attention was the way that rituals worked within the setting.

In Crestfallen magic is a slow and subtle art that involves rituallists gathering power and then shaping it to create a magical effect; it occurred to me that this could very well be ported into other games and that it might be an ideal match for the Ahlmac blood magic.

Please note: I’m not going to go into too much detail about the Crestfallen rules specifically here (if you are interested then I urge you to purchase a copy once it is availabe for generally release) but am going to produce some mechanics inspired by them.


 

Ahlmac Blood Rituals

Ahlmac blood rituals are represented by a series of rolls:

  1. A, Explorer roll to accumulate the required components of the ritual.
  2. A Scholar roll to prepare the ritual.
  3. The profession used for the third roll depends on the nature of the ritual:
    1. Aristocrat: Rituals of social manipulation and control.
    2. Engineer: Manipulating/interfering with Jadetech.
    3. Explorer: Aiding transportation or movement.
    4. Fighter: Inflicting harm or protecting someone from it.
    5. Scholar: Gaining knowledge or insight.
    6. Scoundrel: Rituals of disguise or theft.

Please note: In order to use Ahlmac blood rituals the character must have an Aspect that gives them narrative permission to do so, Assets can also be built that provide bonuses to blood sorcery.


Example Asset: Master of Blood Sorcery

Cost: 1 refresh
Technique
Guiding Aspect: Whatever aspect allows the character to use Ahlmac blood rituals.Feature: Focus (adds +1 blood ritual rolls)
Flaw: Situational (only when the caster has drawn blood in the scene)


Performing a blood ritual takes a day, however this can be reduced for each of the three rolls that is succeeded with style.

Number of Rolls succeeded in Style

0 – Ritual takes one day to perform.
1 – Ritual takes half a day to perform.
2 – Ritual takes six hours to perform.
3 – Ritual takes three hours to perform.

The difficulty of each roll depends on the effect that the rituallist is trying to achieve.

Explorer Roll Difficulties
This difficulty roll is based on how obscure the ingredients are and the final outcome of the ritual, the difficulties below list the type of enemies that could be affected to provide an example.

+2 Minimal – a non-combatant.
+4 Lesser – a single mook.
+6 Greater – a group of mooks.
+8 Major – a main villain.

Scholar Roll Difficulties
This roll is based on the surroundings and trappings that the rituallist has to hand, some example are given below:

+2 A lot of preparation, the rituallist is taking their time or is in a place consecrated to the Ahlmac religion.
+4 An average amount of preparation, the rituallist has had time to adequately prepare the ritual space.
+6 Minimal prepartion, the rituallist is hurried.
+8 No preparation or the rituallist is under fire.

Final Roll Difficulties
The final roll difficulties are largely left to GM discretion but should be based on the desired effect; for instance if the ritual were to inflict shifts of harm then the GM might take the number of shifts as the difficulty.

What if the ritual goes wrong?

A failed Explorer roll means that some mistakes were made with the trappings of the ritual and that the affect which occurs is not precisely the desired one, a failed Scholar roll results in the uncontrolled power of the ritual being released causing strange side-effects whilst a failure on the final roll depends very much on the desired effect of the ritual.

If you’re looking for further inspiration for ritual use or one method of using them in your games then I highly recommend that you check out the Crestfallen RPG.