March 30

Shackled City Adventure Path #2

So another session is wrapped up and the players have been meeting some of the other residents of Cauldon while disposing of the loot they have collected.

They’ve also managed to have one of the npcs arrested for being an accomplice to a crime.

Trouble is now they have done this they are questioning their motivation for continuing their exploration below the city.

I have a week to try and get them back on track with the campaign and I think I may just have the way to do it.

Posted from WordPress for Android

Category: fantasy, RPG | LEAVE A COMMENT
March 28

Shackled City Adventure Path

After a brief hiatus I’m once more back in the saddle as gm and starting to run the Shackled City Adventure Path for my group.

I’ve debated with other gms the pros and cons of such large scale adventures before and this is going to be my first real attempt at a long term D&D campaign.

It’s also the first time I’ve had the players control multiple characters, two each just do we have the required four player party basis which became the norm for D&D 3.

I’m cheating slightly and I’m using Pathfinder as my core rules and the players seem to be happy with the rules set.

We’re only a couple of sessions in and things are going OK but there are still areas that need to be addressed; like the combat manoeuvres. Despite the design team trying to simplify them there are still questions over whether or not you would actually use grapple or disarm unless you really had to.

Before embarking on running this mighty adventure I did search the web to see if any conversion notes had been published and I didn’t find many at all; those that I did find were incomplete although there was an amazing one which I bookmarked but apart from that I’m having to convert on the fly.

While I’d love to post details of how they’re progressing I have a feeling that my players may decide to read this blog and see if I accidentally leak a spoiler or two from each session.

Posted from WordPress for Android

Category: fantasy, RPG | LEAVE A COMMENT
March 28

Kickstarter risks

Despite the title of this post, I’m not referring to a variant of a popular world domination board-game but rather the inherent risk of backing a project.

If I’ve learned one thing about backing Kickstarters the people who get them started are often very creative individuals who have some need to have their dream realised and shared with the global community.

This creative spark is something to be nurtured and through the medium of crowdfunding we can all play our part in making this shared dream come true.  Sometimes the dream can go sour and the backing that we pledge to the project is lost and reputations can be shattered by the fallout of a project that fails to deliver.  I won’t provide a list of those that have failed as I don’t think it is my place to do so, you can quickly get an idea by searching for “failed Kickstarters” .

Some people think that Kickstarter is a great virtual store front for pre-ordering games which it isn’t and this also causes complaints when even though a project has funded nothing comes of it.  It’s more like a casino in the fact that it’s a risk you’re taking but one that can pay dividends.

I always back a project knowing that I could lose my stake and so never back more than I can afford to lose.  I’m also guilty of forgetting I have backed something and a few months down the line I get a discount code or a link for me to obtain my product; this to me is a little gift to myself and is a wonderful surprise when it happens.

Currently only two projects I backed have been unsuccessful and I’m very proud of that fact.  One project I pulled out of did succeed but has been mired in controversy since the creator just gave up and vanished taking the money with him.

So I wish you all well in backing projects, just don’t risk more than you can afford and treat each one as an investment.

March 27

Bundle of Holding – MegaTraveller


One of the first games that I fell in love with and certainly the first SF game I ever got is available from the good folks at Bundle of Holding.  This game had so much going for it, a universal task system, streamlined combat and one heck of a metaplot.  I’ve certainly loved the game in all it’s editions but this one sticks in my mind more that the original Traveller.

March 24

Kickstarter – Bulldogs! Fate Core Edition – Sci-Fi That Still Kicks Ass

When I heard about the first Fate edition of Bulldogs I wanted the stretch goal that included a jacket with patches on it but by the time I got around to pledging for the game they’d all gone.   I don’t really have the funds for the big rewards this time but I think I can probably squeeze $10 out of my budget for this one.  The previous Fate edition was pretty spiffy in and of itself, so I can’t wait to see what changes have been made in the new Fate Core Edition.

Fate has been one of my favourite game systems for a while ever since I ran across Spirit of the Century at my FLGS.

March 23

One year on

So it’s been a year since I started this blog and I’m pleased with how it’s turned out so far.

Once I started I realised how much I missed writing for pleasure; most of my penmanship has been dull technical stuff that while serviceable isn’t something that I can point to and say “I did this”.  Which is  very unlike this blog my main outlet for my creative urges although  my muse seems to be driven by my sickness, something that I find very amusing.

I thought it was also time to expand upon my origin story that I first mentioned here, while searching through a box of books it turns out that I had accidentally deceived you all and my first purchased RPG turns out to be the basic edition Marvel Superheroes RPG.  I purchased in 1986 while on holiday after being driven to find it by the amazing adverts in the back of the Marvel comics I was reading.

I think I forgot about buying it as I never seemed to know what to do with it or how to get other people interested.  Bear in mind this was before the days of the internet and gaming magazines in the UK were had to get hold of from the local newsagent.

What really grabbed my interest in gaming was a programme I saw on LWT back in the early 80s called “South of Watford” and presented by Ben Elton.  I remember watching him go to the Games Workshop store in Hammersmith and talk to the store manager before later on playing some D&D.  Five years later I would be in that very store and buying my first games.

Games Workshop then was a different store, one that sold other peoples material and long before the advent of the Games Workshop hobby which is what they’re best known for these days.  In those days you could pick up a licensed copy of Runequest, Traveller or even Call of Cthulhu.

Moving behind the screen.

After being a player for a short period of time I decided to try being a gamesmaster and looking back on those days I think it was my sheer enthusiasm that kept me going.  I was at one point gaming five nights a week running a different game each night with a different system.  It was during this time that I started to understand what I liked to run; science fiction piqued my interest more than fantasy did and I loved the four colour superhero genre.  Much Traveller and Marvel Superheroes was played along with a side dish of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.

The Critical Miss years.

It all started simply enough with an open call for players at a local comic shop; the owner knew me and the people organising the event and  I decided to turn up and try to play with a different group of people.  Let me tell you those first few weeks were a great time, we all brought games down to play and since we never really that organised you could never count on the same group of players for each game.  I took my chances and dusted out Paranoia second edition and over the course of several weeks I ran through the published adventures I had bought.  The players had fun trying to kill each other and deal with the game forms a friend had photocopied.

Slowly the group started to crystallise from the raw elements we threw at it, after a few months we lost a player and the venue; we found a new home in a building owned by the father of another player and we played in that cold cramped warehouse amongst the boxes of paper.  Summer came around and then we started to lose players until by the following October we were d0wn to a handful and we moved once again to my place.

I found myself running more games and with a stable group we could try to play campaigns together.  I was now playing twice a week with two different groups and this became once a week when the two groups melded together.   We lost more players as well; one went off to university, one moved away and one left for personal reasons I won’t go into here.

It was during this period I broke out Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay and embarked upon the Enemy Within Campaign.

The present.

I’ve been playing with another group of friends online using Roll20 and that’s what caused the genesis of this blog back with this first post . 




March 21

Catalogue update #5

I’ve made a lot more progress in cataloguing my game collection as it turns out I can search by titles in the package and while this has been working well, there are a few omissions in their core database.  To fill in the holes I found an excellent website that allows you to look up books by ISBN and I’ve been searching the game books I’m looking for, then copy and paste the numbers in the database before looking it up.

I can finally say that it looks like I’m starting to win the battle and the tides are turning in my favour.