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Saturday, May 30, 2009

[Wargaming][Gaming] RPG History and PreHistory-

If you haven't already read THIS, please consider doing so. I also heavily suggest reading THIS.

All of that makes me want to finish Volume I and jump right into my wargaming rules for Urutsk, but as they are for the latter Autumn era, I'll have to keep my reins tight until the appropriate time.

If only I knew where Karl P. is at and how to reach him, I'd make every effort to get as many games of the Second Tyrrhean War played on the squad-level as possible during that time.

We used tan plastic army men of the vaguely Vietnam-era style for the mainline Khark warriors, and Blockmen [*] figures and cowboys to represent the Resth Clan Confederacy troops defending their fully-staffed and equipped, air-dropped firebases.
Using a reallly nifty rule from Leonard Hung's Cathy Arts of RolePlay (I lament losing my copy of that brilliant game) where Chi allowed for any sort of linear movement at full rate, we had the equivalent of Khark 'ninja' sappers simply hop over the perimiter defences (if they had detected them) and up into the gunners' tower. My d6-only based rules were fast and vicious, and the sappers would almost always kill in hand-to-hand. Once the sentinels and heavy weapons were neutralised, the mainline Kharks would swarm en mass and only lost once or perhaps twice (but that was nearly a total kill on both sides), regardless of who played them. Memories of this weird mustard, olive, and khaky flower-print as being the jungle terrain and utilising the actual shapes and sizes of the print to act as degrees of cover just make me long for those late night, back patio, Hialeah games when I came down from the hell that was Jacksonville.

I had rules for single-shot, musket-era volley-fire, so there is nothing stopping me from releasing those rules either at the end of Vol. I or at the dawn of Vol. II.

We'll see...

Friday, May 29, 2009

[RPG] Peter Mullen Cover Sketch-

=--------> LINK <--------=

[Milieu][RPG] A Sample Location: Fortress Blackwood-

(c) Copyright 2009 Kyrinn S. Eis All Rights Reserved

Fortress Blackwood-
* Governess Dame Yrsend Iiv [F]: Dame Iiv is a youngish, grizzled and knighted veteran of the Latter Unification Wars, wounded over the course of the campaign. After much difficult argumentation, and with anonymous recommendation from several of the higher ranking officers, Yrsend was granted a commission alongside the title of Brigadier in Residence, and command of the garrison, its 600 Marines, and its 100 Artillerists. She is simultaneously very attractive, perhaps even beautiful, but also savagely scarred diagonally across her long and narrow face. She also walks with a noticeable limp and has a mechanical left hand covered by a white lace, black leather glove.

Blackwood Isle is the location upon which the sprawling fortress is located. ¾ of an XsM beyond the walls on three sides are the eponymous black woods, now dead and gnarled orchard trees that cover hundreds of acres virtually to the rocky shores and scattered with remnants of ruins. On the other half of the island, amid gentle slopes and valleys, are the fortress’ pasture lands tended by yeomanry comprised of retired military personnel and their families. The island’s location in the far north of the Concordance’ territory subjects it to terrible storms with little warning, and many a ship has been sundered on approach to that bleak spot.
Fortress Blackwood is an important part of the Northern Corridor Defence Network for the Western Isles Concordance, and houses artillerists as well as veteran marines. ‘Darkwand’ is Fortress Blackwood’s enormous cannon, capable of firing in excess of 22 XsM (well over the horizon), and delivering a wide variety of payloads in specialised shells. Through the redundant nature of the Network, communications determine the payload, as well as verifying the coordinates upon which the massive gun is to fire. Important in this speedy communication are Psychics who are brought into communion across great distances, and capable of acting in concert as one Overmind for the defence of the blessed isles.
There are an additional 140 support personnel. The yeomanry consist of six families at any given time of year. The interior of the fortress can support more than this number and has stores for one full year’s maintenance regularly stocked and rotated out for fresh reserves. Blackwood Isle is a common way point for ships travelling to Marnharnna, and these often become unintended residents for the duration of long lasting storms that plague the area eight months out of the year. The yeomanry have inns, a tavern, and a bawd-house, reached via underground passages or across the well-maintained and elaborate yard.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

[Milieu][RPG] A Sample Location-

(c) Copyright 2009 Kyrinn S. Eis All Rights Reserved

* Kyhuryk Yann, Governor of Ylliriym and Environs [M]:

Ylliriym <-Journey [of] Darkness: Knights, Nobles, and Prisoners-> is one of several interior sites within the various arcologies carved out of the mountain rock that grant access into the depths of the earth, and into which the earliest and chiefest explorers descended never to return. In the intervening centuries, other expeditions have furthered the knowledge of the once populated underworld, but it has been reported that the number of semi-worked tunnels are too numerous to adequately map even in preliminary degrees, and that the bizarre creatures battled were so horrific that men flung themselves screaming into the stygian depths rather than face the things.
Ylliriym is not as active these years as in times past, but it is now open for foreigners to explore, once they (buy a licence and) are deputised as representatives of the Black Crown, and accompanied by Ylliriymn troops <-The least of all Men, -Crowned; Dedicated Knights, [of] Dark Travel->, with the understanding that payment is only in the form, of treasures found. The Ylliriymn are under orders to recover artefacts of the Ancestors, --greedy foreign adventurers be damned. To facilitate the official exploration efforts, domestic manufacturing companies have storefronts and limited-scale production of the most common and disposable items. Other enterprising businesses (including foreign-owned and operated) fill the rest of the space within the adventurers’ city, such as arenas, brothels, inns, restaurants, ymdre stables, and temples.
Before entering the city, the individual must submit to a full examination, and to the collection of humours and evidences so as to be able to compare them with returned remains, or the apparent individual. Although the atmosphere in Ylliriym is one of excitement and privilege, Ylliriymn are everywhere as are more clandestine intelligence elements which are laced throughout the vigilant community’s resident and transient populations.

[RPG] Second Stage of Cover Info.-

In the words of Chevy Chase, "I LIKE IT!"

The sketch with preliminary characters/figures has me very excited and feeling very positive about the final product.

Peter Mullen's cityscape in the immediate background is such a great contrast the the foreground elements that it really conveys the difference between the time of the Ancients and the contemporary period.
One of the two characters I was most interested in seeing, was among the three depicted in this sketch-state. She is already showing the sort of fine detail Peter is known for that separates him from some of the old guard demigods. Simply the fall of her gathered tresses, not to mention the tome from which she is reading to the party as they observe the city --these details, so early in the project just warms my heart.

I am now gathering images to couple with succinct notes for interior illustrations.

I'll have to see if he feels comfortable drawing maps.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

I Work Better at Night-

* I have three more adventure locations to write; edit and expand a few of the thirteen I already have; and must then finish the leaders of those areas. Do you folks know good map artists that don't charge organ and limb prices? Hook me up? :D

* My heavy rotation music of late has been: All 7+ hours of my The Moody Blues collection, especially the old LP concept albums; New Riders of the Purple Sage: Home, Home on the Road; A Decade of Steely Dan; and the occasional Dead Can Dance, and Jethro Tull. I think, however, that I will need to switch musical gears toward my darker and faster stuff, such as Fields of the Nephilim, The Misfits, and Samhain, to get this all finished on time.

* I have changed that problem line in Maesha's story, crazyred. I hope it works now. :)

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

[Milieu][Fiction] The Story of Maesha-

The Story of Maesha-
© 2006 Kyrinn S. Eis All Rights Reserved

DURING The reign of the Ten Powers of Bereme Oykh, trade with the Turilli tribes to the equatorial south grew to great proportion, and all the wonders of the region were brought back to the North-most mountains of glory.
To win the hearts of the trader princes of the Turilli, gifts of daughters were given. These were women of great refinement and beauty, full of all the graces and charms. Many of these were Khemesh, or half-blood Yirinn, both great exotics.
Maesha of the Nulnehya, the silver-haired forest-folk and cousins to the Khemesh, was given to the prince of the Ihyri tribe. Prince Ealleh was old and jaded. His celebrations’ refuse could serve as kings’ banquets, and his hunger for women was said to be unrivalled. He was cruel to all the girls he owned.
Maesha was beside herself in sorrow at her lot, and after angry shouting to the heavens, she knelt and prayed:

“Wind-breather and stone-founder; father of creation, hear me now, I pray. This one is small, too small to bother with, I know. But, please, consider now her lot, and if moved, grant me Svvervva –(that is to say, ‘escape from all harm’)– and return me to my home. By blood, a child of the First Parents, your children.”

The next morning, as Maesha lay still in deep slumber, a merchant’s caravan met the guards of the prince’s camp. They were Durnsmen, come to buy wares from the princedom. Ealleh received the chief merchant as his guest for a banquet.
When Maoluk, chief of the caravan and a wealthy merchant in the holy Durnish lands, looked upon Maesha as she was paraded with her sisters before the guests, he prayed to Shr.d that she become his bride.
“Now that you see what I have; my herds and wealth; what is it that you seek?” Ealleh said with great confidence.
Taking time to answer, Maoluk replied, “The least of your girls.”
The prince was taken aback by the request. He wondered after its meaning, and he called upon his counsellors to divine the meaning and his best course.

Maesha realised that the matter involved her, and she prayed silently as the counsellors debated among themselves.
Finally, Ealleh demanded an answer of them, and the chief of his wisest men told him that there was only gain in the request, and furthermore, to gift the woman to the merchant, leaving his purse intact to buy goods as well.
“Chose your girl and save your money, my friend. I am not so greedy as to turn a profit on one of them. Look how many more I have.” Ealleh boasted, curious to see which Maoluk chose.

Maoluk took his time and met with each and praised their graces while condemning their faults, the whole while his gaze found Maesha’s over and over again.
After some time, the merchant came finally to Maesha and asked after her in the prince’s account.
“Ill-tempered and melancholy. Possesses an evil eye and mutters curses. I reckon her the least of the lot, and would gladly be rid of her, the witch.”
“Is this true?” Maoluk asked of Maesha.

“If the prince says it so, it is not my place to disagree, sir.” Maesha replied as she looked squarely into the man’s eyes.

Maoluk laughed.
“Then let me please take her away from you, as I find her delightful. My purse is heavy for goods, of which I ask a little of everything you own.”

Ealleh again sought the wisdom of his diviners, and they told him to consent, though it seemed to him a great insult.

In the morning, Maesha was thrust to Maoluk’s feet, along with all her dowry, and coins beside.
“Here, here is her worth, my merchant friend. Take this icy one from me and laden your train with my excess. Tell your brethren I have more where that came from.” Ealleh spat.

Maoluk held his tongue as he lifted the girl to her feet.
The caravan departed, heavy with all the goods of the princedom.

After days of travel, the train entered a gate set into a vast wall that stretched from East to West.
The gate led into a military camp of white linen-enshrouded warriors, sealed off from contamination with the outside world.
“Where do I find myself, sir?” Maesha asked.
“This is the outermost border of the kingdom of Shr.d, the Only Wise.” Maoluk replied.
“My people give him no name. We dare not.” Maesha replied.
They rode on, “He has given us the gift of His name. It is our prayer, and our recourse. It behoves us to call upon Him, as He will suffer no other in His stead.”
Maesha silently wondered after that.

In her new quarters in the Holy City, she was attended by native daughters of Durn, beautiful and delightful in their own right. Maesha was bathed and oiled. Massaged and perfumed, then dressed in the attire of a noblewoman, white linen gilt with spun gold and decorated with amber, garnet, tourmaline, and jet. Maesha’s hair was braided as the other women, and a veil draped over the crown of her head but not covering more.
Now dressed, she was presented to Maoluk.

“Truly Shr.d has blessed me this day. I have found a Northern diamond of great beauty and rarity.” The merchant praised.
Maesha curtsied and replied, “I too have had my prayers answered. I want to know more of your people’s ways, and your faith in particular. I shall share my people’s traditions and then I will ask of you to fulfil the rest of my plea to the Creator.”
“What is that?” Maoluk asked, surprised.
“It is to return me to my home. The heat withers me, and I long for the shelter of the mountain kingdom that I love more than I can express.” She said.
Maoluk agreed, but secretly prayed she would, in time, find his home and his people to be her home and family.

Maesha quickly mastered the rigid lines and perfect arcs of Durnish script, beyond adopting the tongue with all fluency. Their discussions lasted for hours upon hours, day after day. In time, she mastered the music of the Kaleh and would sing psalms to the delight of the court and the people.
Maolulk learnt of the marvels of the North; heard the tales of the Sojourn through the black ice valleys that encircle the North-most peaks that crown the world. He shivered at the tale of P’Jol, the siren of the polestar that hexed travellers who dared to move beneath her gaze without the protection of the Raven charm. He laughed at the account of First Thaw with its ice slides and fatty-roast feast.
They grew fond of each other, but remained chaste.

After one year, Maoluk asked Maesha to marry him.
Maesha declined, longing still for her native Bereme Oykh.
Maoluk resigned for the time, and continued his loving discourse.

After five, then ten years, Maesha relented, and became Maoluk’s bride.

In the eleventh year, Maoluk was killed while on caravan.
L’lshar, his brother, arrived to take control of the family’s holding, and keep the land within the bloodline. He did not find Maesha to his liking, and was pressured beside by his seven wives and three concubines.
Maesha, set free from the realm, made all haste to journey home, and with her granted wealth, took along with her one tenth of all that Maoluk owned, including men and women servants and of his herds and stores.

Through much perilous and tormentious travel, Maesha’s party suffered greatly from predation and loss, until she was left with but one armsman and her own handmaiden, both Durnish.
At a village known to the locals as ‘White Bear Tree’, she learnt that she had entered the lands of the Vrun, North of the equator. There the travellers gained armsmen and scouts to guide her to the Storm Sea, and from there, passage to the Western Isles.

Having set out from the Western Isles nearly a month earlier; lean and hardened; Maesha arrived at last in the frigid lands of her birth and heritage.
Falling to her knees, she wept in thanks to the God who had answered her many prayers and brought her safely home again. She built a packed snow and stone altar to the Creator there, and named it ‘Glory to the Soul-scout’. It stands there to this day.

Still preserved in youth and ability, Maesha lived many years serving her people in court and counsel, as well as honouring the people with better cities and conditions.
During this time, she gained many enemies in the guilds and in counsel, her kinfolk among them. Attempts upon her life were made, but foiled each time through happy circumstance, or providence, as she always reckoned it.

After fleeing into the ruins of the first colonies, heavy with child, Maesha camped out under the sky, atop a fortress tower.
P’Jol tormented her dreams for a week, until one morning, a raven landed and dropped a tail feather before flapping off again.
Maesha bound the feather into her silver-washed chestnut hair, and the torments which P’Jol’s visited upon her were ended.
But, P’Jol did not stop there. She came down to Maesha and challenged her to three tasks, with a magick ring, a flying switch, and a magick cloak, as treasure.
Maesha politely declined.
This infuriated P’Jol, who then schemed to win a challenge with Maesha, and win her as booty.
“If treasures hold no interest or desire for you, then what is it you would have of me?” P’Jol half cackled.
“My lady, I have not asked one thing of you from my youth through tonight.” Maesha replied.
“Surely you desire something beyond your grasp?” The horrible crone leered forward.
Maesha thought a moment, and answered, “One thing, but…”
“What?!” P’Jol demanded
“You can’t possibly grant it, so it isn’t worth the effort…” Maesha lured.
“Anything within my means I will grant you, if you but tell me!” The monstrous woman pledged in view of her immortal kindred amid the heavens.
“I seek power over my enemy. I desire to rule over them, and gain their power. This you cannot do.” Maesha prodded further.
“I swear it! Give but the name of your foe, and by my spirit, you will have them in your grasp!” The thing spit ice as she coughed out frost and stardust.
Maesha shouted out in triumph, “P’Jol, Mistress of the North Star!”
The demon howled in torment as the power turned back upon her, and she enslaved herself to Maesha. P’Jol disappeared and the ring, the switch, and the cloak were left behind.

Maesha left the pole star untended, and soon, the world grew warm and spring thaw came a month too soon. Then summer was absent of snow except at the highest peaks, a first in the records. Autumn grew frost and hunting suffered loss. Winter was unusually harsh.
On the night of the worst storm in the world, the greenhouses collapsed under the wind and snow, ruining the bulb-harvest. Many workers were killed beside, both men and women.
Maesha’s cousin, D’Halan counselled her to fly to the North Star and take the throne of P’Jol.

Maesha considered this, then agreed, leaving her son, Kurian, in his care, then mounted the flying switch, and wrapped tightly against the cold in the magicked cloak while she held out her ringed hand into the wind.
The journey made the world shrink away as when one falls down a well; great and terrible the speed.

The throne of the pole star lay vacant and at sitting upon it, she could see the world’s wobble.
With her ringed hand, she reached down and straightened-out the world, making the seasons regular and fourfold-even.
Soon, the dreams of the world, and her people came up to her in the aether, and she began to direct the thoughts of humanity and beast alike. But, to her dismay, Maesha could only use nightmares and never pleasant dreams. Maesha decided to teach lessons to the sleeping, and only mildly press them with the understanding of failure.
Humanity grew wise in a generation, and many secrets of the Ancients were uncovered and deciphered. The stars themselves soon would lie within their grasp.

After generations were born and perished below, Maesha grew tired, and sought a helper to watch the world.
When none worthy was found throughout the whole world, Maesha took off her cloak, and tied it around the spindle of the world, keeping it upright, though it still wobbled slightly as it went about.
Cold beyond measure, Maesha flew upon the switch with all speed in the hopes of not freezing solid. But, even at that pace, the woman became ice through and through in the hard vacuum of space.
Her body shattered upon impact with the ground, but the ring remained intact, and saved her spirit.
Trapped in the ring with P’Jol, Maesha battled the witch for centuries, until a maiden found the ring and placed it on her finger. Maesha reconstituted herself from the girl’s body, and found that she was still cold, and breathed out frost and stardust.
“Oh, how I must have offended You in my conceit!” She cried out to heaven.
She received no reply.

Bereme Oykh was now a different place, with competitors for empire, and new wars afoot.
Maesha, the Cold Woman, dwelt among her folk, living in the shadows and the nightmares of humanity and beast alike. She found she needed to feed upon the living, lest the heat of weird life leave her again, and she freeze-solid. The wise among the folk gave her sacrifice from their pens, but when no tribute came, Maesha hunted.

Children then, as now, knew she was real, for they saw her in the darkness, watching them, ready to live in their dreams and punish the naughty with nightmares. Adults, however, had forgotten much wisdom in the learning of much knowledge, and their nightmares were easily forgotten amid the bustle of life.
It was then that Maesha began to send the same nightmares to the whole nation. Warnings and portents of disaster and terror in the hopes of rousing them to act before the day should come to pass. These warnings then began to take shape in popular images and artwork, design and philosophy. In this role, she protects Bereme Oykh to this day, by bringing to mind the things we do not yet know, but ought to fear.

A popular, but costly drink is named, Maesha’s Tear. It is cryogenically-cooled and forced out of the metal container by compressed air. The alcohol evaporates rapidly, so the imbiber must drink quickly. Many say they actually breathe the vapour, reminiscent of the Cold Woman's frosty breath of stardust.


Monday, May 25, 2009

Update on My Father-

Mum just phoned and said that my father is practically wheeling himself out of the hospital, and that they'll return shortly.

The man's Con score would be darn near 19, me thinks.

My Father in Hospital; My recovery; Retrograde or ?-

* My father is at hospital but it may not be for a long stay, depending on what they find. He has been on dialysis for about a year now (3x weekly 3-hour sessions), and has recently shown signs of more rapid deterioration. He would be 88 this June 16th.

* I was lovingly scolded by dear friend, Reed 'ThirdRail' Decker, for not advancing the art of role-playing games with my Retrograde activities. I was specifically called out on the ridiculousness of actually rolling for long falls (such as my inelegant but simulationist accounting for lower atmospheric density of 32d6+1d4+32 for a terminal velocity impact).

The back story to all this involves our full-time, dual design sessions in Gainesville, FL. back at the dawn of the 90's as we literally were squatting in an apartment with an extension cord plugged into an active outlet in the building. Reed was working on a really marvellous Supers rules set ('Full Clock' if I am not mistaken), while I was writing my acid-inspired multiversal system which used (still in my parlour of tricks) colour logic to operate the engine. We (I) even woke poor Jack Herman of V&V (and Bill Willingham's Plotter/Scripter for the early Elementals issues) fame one Saturday or Sunday morning, not taking into account the time-zone difference to ask about V&V's rights status, etc.
Since our parting, Reed has not only abandoned dice in his games (yes, they are still games...cops & robbers didn't have any), but has chosen some really ... high-brow subject matter as the setting basis/bases.

So, I don't know if I ought to feel elated that I'm more, um, OS than not, or ashamed that I have become such a retrograde after reaching a pinnacle of RPG design nearly two full decades ago.

Dunno, can't care. I've got work to do...

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Just Talkin'-

* Poor James Maliszewski of Grognardia fame. He has become so central within the, um, whatever one calls the resurgence of old D&D-type games ;) -community that when he posts a 'think aloud' article, folks far and wide descend upon his blog to engage in all manner of speculation, wandering from the topic, and outright personal attacks (both against other posters as well as James, himself). Whew! 'Can't win for losing' is the term that comes to mind -- yet, I hope it doesn't get to him, because Grognardia (even on the very few times I out-right disagree with him) is very much on a wavelength that resonates with me (plus, he has great artistic taste).
Keep up the good writing, James! :D

* I am recovering from a few days of illness, and feeling the weight of my self-appointed deadline more strongly due to my diminished output.
I think I may be able to finish the 16 pro-adventure locations with their leaders before too late this week, but I really doubt that the Ancient tech, and a gaggle of creatures will be complete before the 1st, but we'll see what happens. Hopefully I can complete the initial Aberrations/Mutations tables and write-ups before Deadline. After that, I've given myself another 30 days to whip-up the Beta .pdf.

* I'll see about posting something useful to you folks later today.


Saturday, May 23, 2009

Euch, Ihr, Ihm, und Sie-

Here is an interesting little discussion: LINK

Post-game, and Talk of a Beta .pdf-

Today's session had a later start than I would have liked, but it worked out well, given that the star and another player were making use of my absence to create a 3E character for the latter's Sat or Sunday game. Okay, no problem. We transitioned fairly quickly to my game with a recap of the previous few Prime character sessions to remind them.

The entire session consisted of having the events the 2ndaries witnessed at last session's close of play transpire from the Primaries' point of view.
In the process other commonalities were made plainer and a few of my players seemed to connect the dots well enough to understand that I run events that are independent of their actions, and that their having two sets of characters more than doubles the players' discovery of Urutsk as a result of the web of information formed.

As an aside, I was really gratified to read from one of you here at the Tapestry that the Vrun alphabetic language system was both 'very elegant' and possessed a 'marvellous consistency and depth'. When my mother, a trained Linguist, heard that, her smile said it all.

Regarding the playtest campaign, short of either having them create 'kit' characters just to 'test' them, I'm not certain if we are actually testing any longer at this stage, or if my alterations of the D&Dish kernel proved so minimal in uptake (Point-Design, restructured/renamed Saves, Defence/Armour, etc.) that when nothing catastrophic arose from them, we just went on with the game-playing (the end-user desired result, but often the downfall of a non-objectively 'tested' rules set).

While the term 'Beta Playtest' still brings up a taste of bile with my seemingly wasted months trying to playtest Pathfinder during the early beta stages (why play 3.x in an Old School manner that I never really abandoned when it is such a bad fit and confuses rules-junkies, and there are people still playing the stuff you grew up on, K?!) -comma- I do hope that you folks will kick it around and take the system for a spin around the block. Moreover, I most sincerely ask that you provide feedback when the beta-.pdf is released. Please.


Friday, May 22, 2009

A Personal Appeal-

Michael Moorcock's health has been on the decline for years now, and just recently it came to light that an infection in one of his feet has turned nasty, and may require full amputation.
He, Linda, and I have grown somewhat close over the two years I have corresponded with them, and had the honour and pleasure to met them at 2008 Nebula's for Mike's receiving of the Grandmaster Award. I have adopted them as my second family, and I truly do care about every bit of unpleasantness that has afflicted them recently, and am helpless to do anything about it.

If any of you out there are the prayerful sort, or even entertain 'Good Thoughts', I ask that you kindly take some time to petition on their behalf, or simply send out your 'positive energy' toward them.

I appreciate your involvement,

Friday Pre-Game Monologue (parte the secund)-

I have been so busy writing the first draft that I've not thought about the game session today/-night. I've provisionally planned to return home and continue writing if the dynamic is poor again this week.

My star player has had a few personal considerations in the weeks prior and we lost two sessions to his absence, and the game lost its momentum. By switching to the 2ndary characters, I was able to use the time, and last session just managed to have the two parties 'meet' each other as the port and shipping centre of far eastern Vrun was engulfed in a fireball from the ship they had ... well, long story short (they'd been on that mega-ship and then phase-doored/t-ported FAR away, taking a portion of the hull with them)... anyway, so the two parties just met and I decided to break after only a few hours of 'actual' gaming.

I've asked another player whether the two parties should be joined, or continue to adventure separately, and she voted for separate (which I agree with).

We'll see...

Monday, May 18, 2009

[RPG] Critter (Limited OGC)-

(c) Copyright 2009 Kyrinn S. Eis

Limited OGC Creature-

Text between ]OGC[ symbols is designated Open Gaming Content under the Open Gaming License version 1.0a.

Hish Marik (< -Flying Bounder- >,'Vial Bite')-
Fight Dice: 3+3**
Resolve: +6
Defence/Armour: +8 (immune: Flank|Rear|Sneak)/1d6
AB: +4
# Attacks: Clutch/Rake/Bite/Clutch-Rake-Bite
Damage: Str 14 Grapple/1d8+1d4/1d6 + Toxin (1d6 + Health Test or 1d6 ea. for 3 Turns)
Move: Walk 40' Run 100' Fly 280'
Organisation: Solitary 80%, with 3d4 young 15%, mating #1d8 5%
CT: +3/+5 v. Reflex, etc.
Loot: Type II-I; 50% Type III; 25% 2Sd6 Commons
XP: 320
Rust to Ochre-coloured creatures with black vertical stripes overall, and rosettes of black dots over their paler hindquarters and long black-tipped tail. Their overall shape is tiger-like except the immediately obvious fact that it is spider-eyed and without a neck, hexapedal (six limbed) with long and slender legs, and has feathered wings. The front two limbs are without manipulators and are used for locomotion and Clutching, where they attempt to pin the victim. The second pair of legs terminate in bird-foot-like toes with an opposing digit with which they run, climb, and manipulate objects. The hind pair are powerful flanks that allow them to climb very steep surfaces with the minimum of holds, or leap 3x their Walking or Running speed in height, or 5x that speed if a long jump.
These hunters are aloof from the goings-on in their environment until either prey or a threat present themselves. It is at this point that the Hish Marik pounce upon their victim and viciously clutch, rake, and bite until their victim has ceased to struggle, or the hunter must abandon the fight. They are of average human intelligence in all ways, and exceptionally clever ambush killers and tool users. Accordingly, they will only remain in a losing fight if it is for their life, but may attempt to surrender or ransom themselves. They understand the gist of human speech, and have displayed the capacity to communicate in clicks and gestures.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Look Inside-

(c) Copyright 2009 Kyrinn S. Eis All Rights Reserved

Writing this version of the Urutsk material for the Old School gaming community has served to unlock information; ask questions; and generally expand the detail of this earlier historical period of the world.

While I have covered this period in significant detail, it has been from Urutsk system sibling Aqmlk (the 4th planet)'s perspective. The Imperial Diaspora, the largely unseen Dragon War, and the slow integration of Imperial advanced culture and technology with the martial bloc mega-state, bronze-age society of the 'native' Aqmlkean cousins.

It was only in my previous playtest campaign, using my nTellIGo game engine, that their Dryvv characters travelled to Urutsk, and to the mountain halls of thrice-ancient Bereme Oykh. Their time there in the cyclopean depths and massive architecture of the Ancients brought them in contact with their inky brethren; the dark blood rekindled by horrors that had befallen the People; and they wrought prophecies in the presence of their distant and fractional kin.
One such task was the ringing of the Grand Bell. When I described the cast-metal bell's size as roughly that of the Rotunda on the U.S. Capitol building in Washington, D.C., my players finally looked on with the degree of understanding how large a scale I was describing.

The history of post-Departure Urutsk (roughly 600 years after Vol. I's era) had been played out in earlier decades, but I am uncertain of how much will survive the assaying flame; keeping the fun and mystery, minus the occasionally gonzo territory I was far more prone to travel in days of yore.

In any case, I have lunch to eat, and my 2x monthly C&C game set in Freeport to attend.

Have fun,

Friday, May 15, 2009

[RPG] Two Combos-

(c) Copyright 2009 Kyrinn S. Eis All Rights Reserved

Two combos:

* Machine Doctor (2781)
(1d4M+1d4|+2/CT Vigil, Ctrl|Assay +33 [12/]|Concoct +15 [17/]|Design +15 [14/]|Draft +25 [4/]|Formulate +25 [14/]|Healing +33 [8/]|Repair +33 [12/]|Tech Lore +15 [14/])

Cyborgism is a condition of the time of the Ancients that has permitted only limited study through the centuries until recent developments in the Kherstic fields. Your specialist knowledge of how best to save living tissue, coupled with your understanding of machinery have forged you into a practising member of singular profession: Machine Doctor, capable of fusing the two into one.

* Crystalsmith (3739)
(1d4+1d6M|+1 PAB|+3/CT Life, Vigil, Ctrl|Design +15 [14/]|Draft +25 [4/]|Psychic Tracking +25 [15/]|Repair +33 [12/]|Tech Lore +15 [14/]|Moderate Caster|3-0th, 1-1st)[Charm, Clairvoyance-, Communication, ESP, Fly, Haste, Hold, Suggestion, Telekinesis, etc.])

The Kherstic fields include the development of Sheramalt, 'Psychotronic', devices capable of conferring psychic states upon the operator, or others, depending upon design. Your most profitable products are communication devices, Fly-rods, and Pleasure Masques, but any psychic ability you (or an assistant) possess can be etched into a crystalline-based device. As these crystals are depleted through use, you ensure your vocation.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

[RPG] Proposed Example Characters-

(c) Copyright 2009 Kyrinn S. Eis All Rights Reserved

My proposed Example Characters-

Sister Straelii
Female Western Isles Vrun Latent Mutant
Glass Blooded
Friend to Mythics
Knack: Orison ('Stabilise'); At-will
* Devoted Warrior 'Paladin' (2077)
(Md10|+1 AB|+3/CT/Non-Ethn|+2 Fo/3x/24 Detect|+2 Fo/1x/24 'Smite'|Elemental Aura [300])

Tyren Mhar of RunHaron
Male Yirinn Human
Earth Blooded
Friend to Birds
Knack: Native (Wilder) +1
* Rover 'Ranger' (2707)
(Md8|+1 AB|+2/CT Life, Ctrl|+2 Fo Ranged 30'|Forage +60 [8/]|Secret +15 [/]|Silence +33 [/]|Track +40 [10/])

Raev of the Grassy Stream
Male Marnharnnan Vrun Human
Positive Lightning Blooded
Friend to Cats
Knack: Profession (Hunter) +1
* Warden 'Druid' (2399)
(Md6|+1 AB|+1/CT Life|Forage Feast|Animal Power +33 [17/]|Calm/Befriend Animals +60 [8/]|Track +50 [10/])

Maryn Brynhert
Female Vrun Mutant
Water Blooded
Friend to Amphibians
Friend to Fish
* Healer (1465)
(Md4|Healing +33 [8/]|Assay +33 [12/]|Formulate +25 [14/]|Concoct +15 [17/])

I am still debating whether to make them available as quick-play characters, complete with scores and gear, or something less than that.
One idea I am favouring is naming the characters, but allowing the player to roll scores and fill in the sheet, roll their starting funds, and purchase their gear. --Lots of Sister Straelii and Tyren Mhar stories, with 'endless' variations.


[RPG] 12 Additional 'classes' Built via Point Design System-

(c) Copyright 2009 Kyrinn S. Eis All Rights Reserved

First, I want to thank all of you for subscribing to this blog. I do notice the numbers increasing, and I just wanted to take the time to say, 'hello'.

Here are twelve of the sixteen, the other (core-)four previously posted to this blog.

Devoted Warrior*

Punk Mage



The following do not have their Arms and Armours Proficiencies chosen. Any such Proficiencies must be paid for separately.

Mdx: Maximised die whatever
AB: Attack Bonus
CT: Critical Test
* Experience ('Petrification')
* Lifeforce ('Death Ray')
* Vigilance ('Wands')
* Control ('Spells')
* Reflexes ('Dragon Breath')
* Nerves ('Petrification')
* Health ('Poison')
Fo: Focus
[#]: Cost per %

* Devoted Warrior 'Paladin' (2077)
(Md10|+1 AB|+3/CT/Non-Ethn|+2 Fo/3x/24 Detect|+2 Fo/1x/24 'Smite'|Elemental Aura [300])

* Rover 'Ranger' (2707)
(Md8|+1 AB|+2/CT Life, Ctrl|+2 Fo/Ranged 30'|Forage +60 [8/]|Secret +15 [/]|Silence +33 [6/]|Track +40 [10/])

* Warden 'Druid' (2399)
(Md6|+1 AB|+1/CT Life|Forage Feast|Animal Power +33 [17/]|Calm/Befriend Animals +60 [8/]|Track +50 [10/])

--Animal Power: The character can utilise one or more of a nearby natural creature's abilities, or can (if successful) disappear into a local creature, and re-appear further away as the creature travels.
This should be understood to be a continuum of effects, each subsumed in the next higher Threshold crossed.

Thus, a Warden who scored an 83 would be capable of: Know Location, Use Senses, Natural Attack, and Ability Boost (as the 83 is equal to or greater than 75, but less than 100).

A successful Calm/Befriend is necessary to initiate this power without a fight. Forcing the use of Animal Power immediately triples the Thresholds, and results in the delivery of (FDd8) psychic damage to the Warden.

Location= 33

Senses = 50

Attack = 67

Boost = 75

Travel = 100

* Healer (1465)
(Md4|Healing +33 [8/]|Assay +33 [12/]|Formulate +25 [14/]|Concoct +15 [17/])

* Scout (2738)
(Md6|+1 AB|+1/CT, Ref|+3 Fo/Awareness|Death Strike [178]|Forage +33 [8/]|Secret +33 [6/]|Silence +45 [14/]|Track +45 [10/])

* Foil 'Rake' (1684)
(Md8|+1 AB|+1/CT Ref|+3 Fo/Melee Weap. Spec.|Carouse +45 [5/]|Secret +33 [6/]|Silence +15 [14/]|Shadow [178])

* Punk Mage (3098)
(Md4|+1 AB|+1/CT Ctrl|Hack Spell +15 [16/]|Magical Research +25 [14/]|Spells: Moderate Caster|3-0th|1-1st)[any spell list]

* Blacktongue 'Puppeteer' (2963)
(Md4|+1 AB|+1/CT Ctrl|+1 Fo/Perform|Spells: Major Caster|3-0th, 1-1st)[Charm & Illusion]

* Adventurer 'Soldier of Fortune' (1480)
(Md8|+1 AB|+2/CT Nerves, Ref|+1 Focus|Forage +15 [8/]|Secret +15 [6/]|Silence +15 [14/])

* Technologian 'Tinker' (1316)
(1d4|+2/CT Vigil, Ctrl|Repair +33 [12/]|Draft +25 [4/]|Design +15 [14/]|Tech Lore +15 [14/])

* Antiquarian 'Lore Keeper' (3926)
(1d6|+2/CT Life, Ctrl|+2 Focus|Silence +15 [14/]|Research +33 [16/]|Major Caster|3-0th, 1-1st)[Clerical & Protection/Banishment/etc.]

* Psychic 'Mind-Mage' (2723)
(Md6|+1 PAB|+3/CT Life, Vigil, Ctrl|Psychic Tracking +25 [15/]|Moderate Caster|3-0th, 1-1st)[Charm, Clairvoyance-, Communication, ESP, Fly, Haste, Hold, Suggestion, Telekinesis, etc.]

If the player can afford to combine two entire kits for the starting DXP available, they are perfectly welcome to simply combine them, etc.
Given that this is a hybrid rolled-design character generation system, I am confident that play groups will very quickly adopt/adapt it and make it their own.

I would really appreciate any constructive feedback.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

More Public Thinking Aloud-

* I am working on the last three of the sixteen sample 'classes', including the 'Core Four' D&Ders know so well. My current thought is to use four of the non-cores to use as Example Characters in the text, as well as providing their write-ups for player use in quick-play.

* The slightest prickles of ... concern regarding all I have yet to do: Creatures, Spells, ...whew...

* Mythmere is keeping Peter Mullen busy, but hopefully I will have something coverish to show you folks soonish.

* Has anyone received their printed copy of People of the Pit, yet?

Monday, May 11, 2009

Update and Future Products-

* Expanding my short-hand notation for four additional 'Type-Kits' created in the Point Design system, ready for play except for Ability Scores, Arms/Armour Proficiencies, and Gear. To further expedite play, I will likely create Ready Rucks with gear keyed to each 'class' and a few general purpose ones. I've always very much appreciated T&T 5'th edition's Delver's Pack for including matches and smokes, twine, wax, chalk, etc.

* Streamlined the presentation of the Critical Tests (order in which they appear), and since you lurking bunch didn't offer anything better, I have replaced the misbehavin' Paralysis-replacement with Nerves. It is still based on Str, and the classic Fighter still retains the penalty, but now it both balances with increased likelihood that a Fighter will have a Str mod. to negate the penalty (which I reiterate is present in the source material of D&D), and I have a name for it that makes sense for the Mage and Thief who receive better score in it. I know, big whoop...

* I will likely not include the Khark in Vol. I, but will keep the Khem, as they are so integrally tied with Yirinn culture, and the work is primarily concerned with the Western Hemisphere.

* Still must decide which Aberrations/Mutations make the cut and swiftly type them up. My Aberrations & Dark Fealty book should be close to the second major release.

* Have to start plugging numbers into the LuLu cost calculator, and based on Mythmere's experience, I think I will investigate an A4 size for the print copies (should that time come).

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Influential Movies-

Many of my top 10 are in this list:

* Elizabeth
* Earth Versus the Flying Saucers
* Peter Cushing/Christopher Lee Hammer Dracula movies
* Mad Max
* The Road Warrior
* The Matrix
* Fight Club
* Dark City (Rufus' version)
* Das Boot
* Kiss Me Deadly
* Hellraiser
* Solaris (Soviet)
* 2001 ASO
* Apocalypse Now
* African Queen
* Telefon
* White Line Fever
* The Duel
* Barry Lyndon
* Excalibur
* The Deliverence
* Miller's Crossing
* Barton Fink
* Oh Brother Where Art Thou?
* Blood Simple
* Big Trouble In Little China
* Escape From New York
* The Thing
* The Exorcist
* Slacker
* They Live
* Prince of Darkness
* Phantasm/Phantasm II
* An American Werewolf in London (Landis)
* The Wolfen
* The Hunger
* Piranha!
* The Hunger
* The Hitcher (Hauer)
* Ravenous
* Pulp Fiction
* Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid
* The Good, The Bad & The Ugly
* Captain Alatriste
* The Final Programme

okay, that's enough for now.

What are some of yours?

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Missing Links

For some formatting issue, hyperlinks are not functioning correctly.

Here are the web addresses of the two sites:


Interview: Ken St. Andre (Creator of Tunnels & Trolls)-

(c) Copyright 2009 Ken St. Andre and Kyrinn S. Eis All Rights Reserved

The following is an interview with Tunnels & Trolls creator, Ken St. Andre, conducted via e-mail and re-printed here with his knowledge and permission.

* Timeshadows: Hello, Ken. Welcome to The Grand Tapestry. The bar wench will bring you a frosty mead in a moment. Do you mind if we get right into the interview?

Hello, Kyrinn,
Thanks for showing me The Grand Tapestry. Can't we just stick to the mead, best drunk warm, my lady, and skip the interview? Ah, I remember swilling mead with the Society for Creative Anachronism when I was a young and solitary troll--those were good times. To tell the truth, I'd much rather cavort with the barmaid than ramble on about ancient glories, but I guess an old troll has to take whatever pleasures are offered to him. So ask away . . .

* T: Alright, then. I know from other interviews, as well as our personal correspondence, that your original Point of View as regards Tunnels & Trolls was that of the fantasy titles that comic book publisher Marvel (and DC?, others?) put out in the '60-70's. Do you mind listing a few of the titles?

Marvel Comics made history with the release of Conan the Barbarian comics back in about 1970 with art by Barry Smith. I was already a big Conan fan, and I started buying them with the very first issue, which I still have somewhere in my back room. Conan was popular and other swords and sorcery comics appeared. Lin Carter's Thongor appeared in Creatures on the Loose even before Conan. D. C . Comics did an adaptation of the Grey Mouser and Fafhrd. I'm not going to do a history of fantasy in comics here, but there was plenty of good stuff available back in the 70s. I never saw a really good version of Lord of the Rings though (I saw some not so good ones).

* T: Which of those were your favourites, and what made them appealing?

I bought every sword and sorcery item I could find in those days. It wasn't as common as it is now. Conan, in any form, was my favorite, but I identified a bit with the Grey Mouser and also with Elric of Melnibone. Not that I was as short as a child or an albino by any means, but I never had the muscles of Conan, and always figured I'd live by my wits instead of my brawn in any fantasy world.

What made them appealing? Adventure, monsters, scantily clad women. All that carried over from my childhood love of Tarzan. Bookish, nerdy honor student Ken St. Andre would have done anything to be a fantasy hero--anything except join a gym and actually build muscles.

* T: With that knowledge, the 'explosive' Ability-score-growth of T&T makes more sense. Do you think that employing the 2-point per level Ability scheme found in Michael Stackpole's Mercenaries, Spies & Private Eyes would 'work' with T&T, or is the game intrinsically cinematic and for a lack of better word, 'heroic'?

Stackpole's MSPE was an attempt to do two things with T & T. He/We wanted to show that the game system could be used in any setting--and what is further from classic fantasy than 20th century detective/espionage fiction? And we wanted to add the whole concept of Skills to the Tunnels and Trolls rules. Mike jumped in and did all that with MSPE, and it worked well enough, but it never really satisfied me or caught my interest. Perhaps it's because I'm more of a swordsman than a shooter. In my youth I fenced (with foils and sabers), I wielded a 2-handed greatsword for the SCA kingdom of Atenveldt, I took archery in college and actually made the archery team for a semester--that despite having terrible vision. I could shoot, too, but I didn't shoot much or often.

As for the game being cinematic, imho, all role-playing games are inherently cinematic. They are crammed with fascinating characters and dangerous situations. The difference is in the game masters. A dull GM like me reduces it to an evening of jokes and dice rolling while a cinematic GM like Larry DiTillio (he of Babylon 5 fame) will deliver an adventure that you remember all your life.

* T: May I take us back a bit further?

Blow in my ear, and you can take me anywhere. :)

* T: demure smile

You have to understand that I was already designing my own games, (I did a Star Trek board game with competing empires that we spent many a Friday evening playing at the Cosmic Circle meetings) and writing my own fiction long before I ever heard of Dungeons and Dragons. I was heavily into fantasy, and hoped to write it for myself some day. Then around the end of 1974 I began to hear about this fantasy game called Dungeons and Dragons, but in the godforsaken wilderness that was Phoenix at the time, in the days before the internet, something you heard about in California was kind of hard to find in Phoenix. I was eager to play it, but clueless.

Then, on a gaming night visit, I finally found someone with the original boxed set of Dungeons and Dragons that he was showing off. No one was playing the game. Nobody knew how yet. But I borrowed it and read through it for a couple of hours. A lot of it made no sense to me. I had no background in miniatures, so talk about moving so many inches per turn was just gibberish. And the dice! What the heck was a 4-sided die, or a 10-sided one. Eight, twelve, and twenty sides!!! Not possible. At least, not obtainable by me at that time.

But I came away from my reading with a basic idea of what the game was supposed to be about. Adventurers invading the strongholds of wizards and monsters and coming back with treasure. Hey, this was just like the Conan stories I loved. I had to have this game, and if I couldn't easily get one, I wasn't about to wait. I would invent my own. And I wouldn't just copy what I'd read, but I'd make what seemed logical to me. Yes, adventurers needed attributes, and those attributes would be Strength, Intelligence, Luck, Constitution, Dexterity, and Charisma. What the heck good was Wisdom? Luck made a lot more sense. And they would need weapons and armor and magic. So, off to the library to research weapons and monsters. What does armor do? It absorbs damage. It doesn't make you harder to hit. Armor makes you easier to hit--it's heavy and slows you down, but if the hits bounce off, you don't get hurt.

And I used my antique typewriter and I wrote down everything about how to make a character, and how to make a monster and I created a dozen pages or so of something I could use to create that fantasy gaming experience that I had been hearing about. I tried it on my friends. They liked it. They kept borrowing and copying my notes, which were getting ragged fast, and they gave me ideas I hadn't considered at the beginning--like other kindreds. Why not play elves, and dwarves, and hobbits, and leprechauns? How could I have overlooked missile weapons? What do you do if you're in trouble--saving rolls were born--all on luck originally, but it didn't take long to generalize the idea to the other attributes. And it got to be such a pain having people borrow my notes that I vowed to produce a rulesbook for everyone. And by midsummer, with a lot of help from my friends, Bear Peters, Marc Anthony, Steve McAllister, Rob Carver, I got the first edition of Tunnels and Trolls typed up and illustrated and pasted together, and off to the Arizona State University print shop. 100 copies.

Basically, I saw a need, I jumped in and did something, and I got a deal with a gaming company--Flying Buffalo--that got my game out in the wider world beyond my own circle of friends. In those days everyone was creating their own versions of Dungeons and Dragons, but most people didn't publish, and their versions were closer to the original than mine, probably because they had played the original and understood it better. Thus, most of their variants perished and were absorbed back into the mainstream of D & D while T & T varied ever further from that basic inspiration to become the game it is today.

* T: What role do the fans of Tunnels & Trolls have in the release of, first, 7th Edition, and more recently, 7.5?

Fans provide demand. The idea that people would want the game enough to buy it is very inspiring to a writer/game designer. They also provide encouragement and feedback. T & T never really had any playtesting. I put it out there, and people played the games. If it didn't work for them, the rules say go ahead and change it to suit yourself. If someone told me how and why it didn't work, I might try something different via house rules which in turn might show up in the next edition. The current rate of advancement by using adventure points came from fans. 100 times the current attribute was way too slow for tournament games at a convention, but fans loved the ten times current attribute rate. Thus, to take STR from 9 to 10 only required 90 adventure points, and you could get that many in a couple of fights easily. Fans caused that change. Talents came about in 7.0 because of a perceived need (from fans) for Skills in T & T, and because I didn't like the mechanical sort of way Stackpole implemented them in MSPE.

* T: As an avid reader, I know you have a fairly expansive, favourite authors list, but I was wondering if you would share a few of them with us, as well as which stories/novels in particular you were most inspired by?

My favorite authors are all adventure writers: Edgar Rice Burroughs, J. R. R. Tolkien, Fritz Leiber, Michael Moorcock, Ken St. Andre (heh) and in comics I'd have to say my all-time favorite was Roy Thomas. There are hundreds of others that I like and admire very much, but those would be my tops.

* T: You have published fiction in Mage's Blood & Old Bones, and in your first novel, Griffin Feathers. How was that experience, and can we look forward to more fiction from you in the near future?

I always wanted to be a writer. I always thought I was. I've just been working a bit harder at it this last few years. And yes, there will be more fiction from me, right up until I die. Right now, you can read the continuing adventures (diary) of Lerotrahh on Twitter. It's fun, telling a story, 140 characters at a time.

* T: I recently saw your Top 25 RPGs list, and noticed several similarities to mine, even excepting our favourite KSA titles such as Monsters! Monsters! and Chaosium's Stormbringer. Tunnels & Trolls placed in the Top-10, didn't it?

Tunnels and Trolls came in 8th (behind 3 versions of D & D which I think should have ll been lumped together) in the RPGBlogII list of the top 25 rpgs. He got 150 responses, and I mobilized Trollhalla at the end to vote for T & T. Nothing like a little ballot box stuffing.

* T: One of our Top-10's, both, was MAR ('Phil') Barker's Empire of the Petal Throne (originally published by TSR). What comes to mind when you think of that product or Tekumel in general?

I heard about Tekumel from the beginning, and I love the world creation that Barker did with it. It's easy to see pre-Columbian and Japanese influences on the game along with other exotic cultures. Most of my familiarity with Tekumel comes from Barker's excellent novels about it--those I really admired. Barker and I exchanged letters once only back in the days before email, where he advised me to be more open-minded about other people's creations. I've tried to take that advice, but I never became a Barker follower.

* T: What is your current level of involvement with Tunnels & Trolls? Are there new T&T products by KSA being produced? Where does T&T live these days? Can you tell us more about Outlaw Press' as a producer of current and older-edition products?

I am more heavily involved with T & T these days than ever before. A lot of it comes from running the fanclub a Trollhalla
Jim Shipman of Outlaw Press is always after me to write stuff. With all the encouragement I'm getting, it's easy and fun to turn out new stuff for the game. The creation of T & T 7 and 7.5 has given me back that sense of evolution in the game that we had in the early years when I went through 5 editions in 8 years.

Outlaw Press is the creation of James L. Shipman, and it has figured prominently in the renaissance of Tunnels and Trolls in the marketplace. The best thing any T & T fan could do (or even if you're just curious) is visit their website and look around.

* T: Thank you, Ken St. Andre.

Thanks for giving me this chance to talk, Kyrinn. But I've probably put my foot as far into my mouth as I can get it for now. Now, where did that barmaid with the mead get to? (Trollgod looks around for action.)


Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Grocery List of the Mind-

Aberrations (Shre <'Chaos'>) and Latent Mutants have been fleshed-out a good deal, and still exist within any given Ethnicity. This follows the treatment Humans received, including Eugenics and Imperial Legacy.

I need to pay attention to my spell lists, or simply add new spells and let Referees use their own good sense (perhaps with a recommended/not-recommended list like Privateer Press did with Iron Kingdoms).

Which then brings me to gear and loot, namely, weapons and armour...

Today I thought to parse out the pertinent Ethnic/National sections of the history and place them within the character creation section to further condense the information. Stat-block, then description, history brief.
I am uncertain what to recommend regarding the variable costs for the Ethnicities; whether to count the cost into the starting Design XP, and if so, at what effect on the starting total?

I have been separating and collating the various portions of character generation, and plan to 3-ring bind them with the Exploration & Adventuring, Creatures, and What I have of the Gear and Loot sections. I may achieve my month's-end goal for the entire text, but I will have to be very diligent.

Monday, May 4, 2009

Progress: Ken's Interview-

Due to a rather large impromptu sporting event in Trollhalla over the weekend, Ken St. Andre has been detained, and has sent dispatch that the e-mail interview is now under-way, as it were.
When it arrives, I will post it, post-haste.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Friday Pre-Game Monologue-


* Ken has said that my questions actually forced him to think, so that is causing the delay. Let us take that as a positive sign.

* I have been expanding the role of the Ancients in shaping the PCs through four d% rolls to determine actual heritage, and the possibility of Imperial Legacy. Through this, I hope the little hints help form the image of the evolution of the setting, and how unique aberrations can develop into systematised mental routines or defining physical traits.
This is one reason why I think the subsequent book on Aberrations is necessary, as the full extent of the genetics-theme in the setting could easily drown the fantastical/adventurous, if included in the core rules -- and, may not even appeal to some play groups. By packaging it separately, it can play whatever role a given group assigns it in their game.

* It looks as if it was propitious timing for me to have started the APG secondary-characters, as Tybalt's player will not be present, again.
The new Apothecary 2ndary was happily fortunate to have rolled as an ancestor a Medical Officer, and along with the odd dreams and deja-vu, she gains a degree of competence at related Tests.
Ashta's ancestor was a Ship's Superstructure Technician, which immediately suggests a link to the Yirinn/Dryvv, and makes her Western Isles Vrun ancestry even more interesting.

* I need to think of which creatures will make the final cut of the book. Recent grog-hive-mind consciousness has informed me of the importance of a select and defining group of regular miscreants and inimicals upon whose weapons the PCs may fling themselves.

* Thinking of where I ought to look among my stuff, to find my copy of Jorune.

* When this work is complete, I think I'd like to run a Mercenaries, Spies & Private Eyes - Villains & Vigilantes crossover game. Likely just a mini-series (5-session?) affair, with pre-generated characters, likely on based on my most loved Bill Willingham Elementals setting.