Thursday, 7 November 2013

Important update, status of this blog, Sagas of the Icelanders etc.

Like I already mentioned in that one post long ago, I have pretty much abandoned this blog for a number of reasons.
One is that I've use this blog as a personal journal of RPG theory and I've reached a point where I'm pretty comfortable with my conclusions and I don't feel the need to talk about it any more.
The second is that G+ pretty much satisfies my needs for RPG-related chatter these days. If you want to talk about stuff, come find me there!
Finally, I've started a new RPG-related blog over on tumblr, but it's mostly just picture dumps. You can find it here.

That said, the last post I made on here was announcing the Sagas of the Icelanders crowdfunding campaign on IndieGoGo. The campaign concluded more than successfully and the game got a bunch of beautiful art, cool layout and a printed edition. The campaign is long since over, but the game is now spreading slowly and it has also become available to the general public.

It's home is now here, where you can find links, downloads and other stuff. If you want to talk about the game the best place would be the G+ Community for it. And finally, if you're looking to buy it, Sagas of the Icelanders is available in both print and PDF over here at the BigCartel storefront.

Go play!

Sunday, 28 October 2012

Sagas of the Icelanders IndieGoGo Campaign

Since I have grown to use Google+ for all my RPG-related jabberings, I've completely forgotten to post this here.

I have launched a crowdfunding campaign for Sagas of the Icelanders, my historical viking-themed Apocalypse World hack. You can find it here.

It has funded on the first day and has already passed a number of stretch goals. It now also supports PayPal.

If you don't already know about it and you think you'd like playing a historical game about Icelandic settlers and their problems, go check it out!

Monday, 10 September 2012

Options for level/energy drain

Traditional energy drain is a pain in the ass, especially with all of D&D's derive values. Get hit by a wight and you basically have to rewrite your whole sheet.

There are far kinder (but still scary) alternatives.

1. I think James Raggi suggested this once. Instead of losing a level, you loose all xp for that level. Easy math and it means it takes that much longer to level up again. This can be good for oldschool games where asymetrical advancement of PCs is common anyway.

2. Deal ability damage (con, dex or str) and/or reduce max HP instead. Again, much simpler and brutal, but not my favorite. Works well for many people though.

3. Negative levels. Instead of eating your levels, the undead gives yo a number of negative ones. The simplest form this can take is -1 to all d20 rolls and -5 hp per negative level. If you get as many as your regular level, you die.

4. My favorite one by far requires either healing surges, 5e's Hit Dice (with the slow recovery option) or my homebrew Class Dice. The energy drain eats those. It means simply that recovery time after fighting undead is longer, as characters feel sickly and weak and even if you kill the wight with most of your hp intact, you can't immediatelly recover and fight on. The attack rather literally drains your enegy.

Saturday, 8 September 2012

Climbing the faction ladder

Someone on RPGnet was asking for oldschool rules that they could use for the PCs trying to climb in rank in a guild and some inter-faction intrigue. So I wrote this. It's quick and dirty, so it may need work. I've been thinking a lot about Sigil lately, so this can come in handy.

Faction rules
Each faction has a "philosophy"/outlook and one or more goals. Factions have relationships to one or more factions (rivalries, open warfare, tenous alliance...). The GM outlines those, along with faction names and important NPCs (or improvises them in play).

Upon joining a faction, a character gains the rank of Novice (1). Characters can gain "Faction XP" by:
-performing jobs for the faction, by receiving orders from superiors (fxp based on level of challenge)
-spending money on the faction (bribes, investments, donations; gp for fxp)
-eliminating or demoting higher-ups in a manner that's not noticeable, detestable, abominable or frowned upon in the faction (it might be acceptable to murder your superior and take their place in an evil assassin guild...doing the same within the ranks of the town guard...not so much)

Similar to class levels, faction ranks offer certain benefits. 
Access - the member can request entry into buildings, meeting places, archives etc. of the faction
Assistance - the member can request protection, healing, training or similar assistance from the faction
Command - the member can give orders to those of lower ranks
Fund - the member can request money or similar resources of the faction and its members

Each request is considered a 2d6 reaction roll, based on the monster and retainer reaction rolls, modified by the character's charisma modifier (I'm assuming old school modifiers) and rank bonus.
2 - suspicion, hostility, rejection
3-5 rebuttal
6-8 uncertain, needs convincing, requires recompensation
9-11 agreement, acceptance
12 agreement and more

Use whatever xp chart you want based on how fast you expect the PC to rise in ranks. Here's a simple one:
Rank                        FXP required              Rank ability
1.Novice...................0 fxp                        Access -1
2.Apprentice..............2000 fxp                   Access +0, Assistance -1
3.Journey(wo)man.......4000 fxp                   Access +1, Assistance +0, Command -1
4.Master....................8000 fxp                   Access +2, Assistance +1, Command +0, Fund -1
5.Grand Master............16.000 fxp                Access +3, Assistance +2, Command +1, Fund +0

Alternatively, instead of a rank fxp chart, rank could be determined by relative amount of fxp. If there are only three guys in the faction and you have the most fxp out of them, you're the Grand Master. If you're the Grand Master with 18.000 fxp but someone gains 23.000 fpx, they push you out...but that would require more tweaking and calculations.

Monday, 13 August 2012

Thinking, planning...

"America is not a young land; it is old and dirty and evil before the settlers, before the Indians. The evil is there waiting."
-W. Burroughs

"Your poetry will now be written with blood."
-Dead Man

"Before man was, war waited for him. The ultimate trade awaiting its ultimate practitioner."
-Blood Meridian