19 August, 2017

RPGaDay2017 #19

Which RPG features the best writing? 

In certain circles, I'm hearing Blades in the Dark for this...but it's the new hotness, so that's to be expected. A couple of years ago, I'm sure everyone would have said Apocalypse World because it was oh so edgy with its over-use of expletives.

In other circles, I'm hearing Blue Medusa, Lamentations of the Flame Princess, or anything by that edgy crowd of OSR personalities who values shock factor over elegance of writing or game mechanisms...and who apparently scream down anyone who compares their work to the Emperor's New Clothes.

These are certainly all games that speak to a specific audience, often an audience of fanatical gamer cultists on one side or the other of the mysterious tribalist division between story-games and the OSR.

In my mind, the best RG writing goes back to the work that first exposed me to Jeremy Keller, Chronica Feudalis

This game is written in the form of an artefact, dug up from the archives of 12th Century monks. It's the kind of technique I first remember seeing in Castle Falkenstein, and while I believe that game did it well, Chronica Feudalis takes it to the next level.  

Dispatch Guide

I've almost finished the Dispatch Guide, which is basically a book of ideas and hints for the player who takes on the GM/Arbiter/Referee role in a session of The Law.

The poll I put forward to Google Plus seemed to agree the idea of a mysterious overlord in the shadows might be a good idea for the cover image...so here's where my current thoughts lie.

Hopefully I'll be releasing this shortly...another couple of editing passes and we'll be done.

18 August, 2017

Images from the Sprawl (part 2)

Here's the second batch of images. They spread a bit more in subject matter and experimental style...but generally maintain the vibe.

It's going to be tough finding stock imagery of characters in the Agency armour if I'm planning to do more in this style, and that's probably why this type of imagery is going to be used more for the generic elements of the setting. Maybe I'm just going to have to construct some cosplay armour and take some of my own stock photos.

RPGaDay2017 #18

Which RPG have you played the most in your life?

I've probably sent more time LARPing than anything else, and for this the most hours of preparation, telephone call back-room dealings and politics, engagement on a regular basis, all point to White Wolf's Minds Eye Theatre.

Including the five years I portrayed a Russian Silver Fang Ragabash, as the Sydney Sept Alpha of thirty or forty regular werewolf players. The girl who was to become my wife played the Beta of the Sept.

Close behind this was my time in the Sabbat, where global connections led me to portraying a member of the Sabbat Inquisition, a Salubri Antitribu.

When it comes to tabletop gaming, I hate to say it but it's probably Rifts. Those formative years at the end of high school back in the mid 90s have a lot to answer for.

17 August, 2017

RPGaDay2017 #17

Which RPG have you owned the longest but not played?

Even if I haven't played a specific game, I think I've mined almost everything on my shelves for soe kind of inspiration at least once...

...but I'm sure I'm probably missing something.
Hmm...hang on a sec. Let me go over to my shelves and take a look.

[A few minutes pass]

Let's see... there's a first edition Wraith (dated 1994), with a second edition beside it and a bunch of sourcebooks that I never got around to playing, but they were certainly mined for ideas in other campaigns I've run, even if those ideas only saw influence in minor parts of a fantasy campaign or as crossover elements in a Vampire-Sabbat/Werewolf/Mage chronicle.

There's an original AD&D book (1978), but I think I actually picked that up more recently when a housemate moved away and left the book behind. And I have both played a version of D&D, and played an OSR-styled game, so I can't in good conscience say that I haven't played this.

Oh...there's a winner.

I got this in high school back in 92-93, thinking I'd play it because myself and a few friends had played a couple of games of Iron Crown Enterprises' MERP, and one of those friends had decided to buy Rolemaster as a more advanced game. We talked about doing something sci-fi, so we chipped in together and bought a copy of Space Master. Then we actually played two or three games of Rolemaster and figured it was cool in some ways but really unwieldy. Ever since then, Spacemaster has sat on the shelf knowing full well that I'll probably never find the right group to run it.

It mostly sits on the shelf for nostalgia value.

Images from the Sprawl

I've been on a bit of a roll with my illustration over the last few days...not sure how much longer it will last, and I've got some assignments to do (which usually kill my momentum).

If you're connected to me via other forms of social media, you've probably seen a few of these, but here's the first dozen...some of which were shared earlier. I'll try to post a dozen images each day, while this spurt of creativity lasts.

16 August, 2017

RPGaDay2017 #16

What RPG do you enjoy using as it is?

The last RPG I used as is, in a campaign setting, was Pathfinder...I didn't enjoy it.

The last RPG I used as is, in a one-shot, was Dungeon World...despite being driven by the Apocalypse engine, I did enjoy it.

But as I said in the last entry, I don't enjoy using many RPGs as they stand. I'll always try them at least once to see how they're "meant to work", but inevitably I feel the need to start tinkering.