My blog's evilness ==

This site is certified 38% EVIL by the Gematriculator

Thursday, January 28, 2010

stopping solo play

I'm sorry Timeshadows I'm gonna have to stop running this for the time being. I think I'm probably gonna be off the internet for a while - there's a lot of personal shit going on over here right now and I just don't have the headspace right now. Thanks for playing though, it's been fun and helpful. Real world just took some ugly turns and I think I am not going to be on the net so much.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Saturday, January 23, 2010

(solo playtest) HT:7 Timeshadows

X). While watching the statuette, cautiously collect the coins only on the ground, and if successful, then go up the new stairs.

Roll 2d6 for amount of gold pieces collected. (Rolled 10).

Up the stairs, you arrive in the main room of the mausoleum, a small stone building with an open passage facing the town center. There are tattered tapestries and faded frescoes on the walls - it seems obvious that this place sees little traffic, just enough to keep a few torches lit.

A) go down to the shrine
B) go out to the town center.

Friday, January 22, 2010

balance vs trade-offs

Trade offs win again!

There's a lot said (pro and con) about "game balance", and I think that most of the arguments in the pro column use 'character-power-equanimity' as a benchmark. I sit pretty comfortably in the con column here. I like the fact that there's not a strict 1:1 relationship between benefits/restrictions, possibilities/limitations of early D&D classes (and races if they are decoupled in that version).

The idea that a 4th level thief should be (by some metric I don't think I've understood) 'just as good' in some way as a 4th level Cleric/Fighter/etc is. In the end, I don't get it. Different classes are different...

The thought process leading up to this match up was to open up the PHB Attacks/round for fighters to the other classes too. On an abstract level, I like it
Class1/round3/2 rounds2/round
Magic User1-1011-2021+

...but does this 'rob' the fighting man of something too iconic, class defining? I dunno - not so much for me. Fighting men will still be more effective in their attacks (to-hit progression, strength bonuses, etc) than the other classes, and I like to think of thieves and assassins (especially) as being more 'fighter-ly'... Moreover, fighters have the 'attack as many <1 HD as levels' thing which no other classes get... I dunno - just an idea, something nice to have around if some 12th level wizard thinks they should have gotten better at fending scaly goblins off with their dagger... at least I'll have a little logic already in place...

So, anyway - balance vs trade off? I doubt that anyone chooses their character's class based solely on the criteria of multiple attacks at higher level.

Ugh. another ramble.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

(solo playtest) HT:6 Timeshadows

x). Take a torch and head for the stairs, padding quietly but quickly up.

You hear no noise from above and climb the wide stairwell, adding none. You find yourself facing another set of stairs leading up, on the far side of a small shrine room. Against the right wall is a pedestal holding several unlit candles and a small statuette - a forearm and hand clenched in fist, the thumb sculpted to extend and become a serpent rearing to strike. You see several coins on the pedestal and scattered on the floor nearby.

A) Go up the new stairs
B) Go down the old stairs
C) Collect coins
D) Light candles
E) Examine shrine & statuette more closely

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

(solo playtest) HT:5 Timeshadows

A). Stick to the space behind the statues and go the exit.
You pad your way quietly, stickling close to the wall, and come to a short passage leading to a larger hall. The unoccupied hall, lit by several torches at 20' intervals, extends to your left, and contains many plaques, honorariums, statues and scenes of relief carving, detailing the lives and adventures of the First Lords of the Keep. From your position, you see a stairwell leading upwards in the center of the opposite wall, and suspect another passage in the same wall, on the far side of the chamber.

A) Take a torch and examine the details of the chamber
B) Make for the stairs
C) Approach the far side of the room for a clearer view

Saturday, January 16, 2010

(solo playtest) HT:4 Timeshadows

X + A). Wait to make certain I am not being watched by local guard, then arm myself (if possible) with a broken piece of wood, and make my way outta' there.

You find the remains of a frame beneath the pallet, and extract a sturdy board (use as a 2-die club).

Not long after you see the guard nodding into sleep, you widen the hole and begin to crawl through, into a cramped darkness. After a long gradual tendency to the left, and an abrupt turn right, you see a circle of dim blue light ahead.

You cautiously approach, and find yourself looking down into a room - the floor seven feet below, the ceiling four or five above. You cannot see much of the interior of the room immediately though - the tunnel ends behind a large statue with broad shoulders. The source of the dim blue light is unknown to you, but fills the room with steady light. You can see other statues along the walls - tall mustachioed warriors in mail with broadswords point down before them.

You quietly climb down from the hole in the wall and peer around the beltline of the statue you stand behind. There is a 7' long sarcophagus of marble in the middle of the chamber and a considerable layer of dust. A crystal set into the lid provides the steady glow - by which you see an open exit on the far side of the small room. The statues line all of the walls.

A) Stick to the space behind the statues and go the exit.
B) Walk across the room to the exit.
C) Examine the sarcophagus.
D) Go back to your cell.

Friday, January 15, 2010

(solo playtest) HT:3 Timeshadows

Make a L2 SR on IQ.
(Rolled 9, failed) The pallet is a nest of nest of spiders, and you have disturbed a large one which scuttles out to attack you. You are weaponless, doing 1d6 plus adds in melee. If the spider succeeds in damaging you, make a L1 SR on Strength, and reduce you strength by the amount the save was failed by for this combat.

[Round 1:] Spider(MR 7(1+4) = 7 damage) You (d6+6 = 13 damage) - spider takes 6
[Round 2:] Spider(MR 1(1+1) = 5 damage) You (d6+6 = 11 damage) - spider crushed!

Behind the pallet, there is a crack in the wall where it joins the floor. The spider you killed came from there. Examining it closer, you see it is a hole large enough to worm into.

Do you
A) Contort yourself into the hole in the wall?
B) (return to options from HT:2, but keep option of returning to spider's hole)

Thursday, January 14, 2010

File under "Constant Vigilance"

The continuing story of James Shipman and Outlaw Press
A fantastic summary of the whole story up to JAN 7 2010 far more coherent than I could have done and a fantastic set of links. Thanks mxy!

And today, was informed by Lulu (along with several others) that all things Tunnels and Trolls were being removed from storefronts, due to "litigation". Ugh. Lulu's policy is "pull first, ask questions later", and I can see the wisdom of this policy - so no feathers ruffled on that account.

Shipman's created a really absurdly hostile atmosphere to work in.

(solo playtest) HT:2 Timeshadows

You are transfered to a few guards inside the gate, and walked to the town's center - where stands the Keep, a magnificent fountain of sculpted marble undines, a mausoleum bearing former lords of the Keep, the headsman's block, and behind that, a squat stone building holding trapdoor entry to the prisons.

Inside sits the half-lame jailer, who takes possession of your goods without much thought. Guardsmen keep their short swords hedged at your throat. You judge resistance futile and refrain from it. The jailer looks you over briefly and says to himself "...doubtless Uraja will put your head on my block, if Darhas don't free ya first..." while you are locked into a windowless cell. In the cell is a straw pallet against the wall and an empty basin - and you noticed four other cells down here. The jailer returns slowly to ground level, leaving a guard below with you.

A) Wait to see if anything happens.
B) Plead with the guard.
C) Try to lure the guard close enough for ambush.
D) Investigate your cell.
E) Call out to see if other cells are occupied.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

(solo playtest) HT:1

OK - if you're game!
I'll give an X) option when I'd like to broaden the decisions, otherwise I'd ask you to stick to the scripted choices. Gracias!
You have arrived at the town's south gate. There are a few shanty shacks in the near distance huddled up against the town wall - which stands 16' tall, in general disrepair. The Keep looms above, from near the town center, its south face painted a pale (and now faded) orange. Two guardsmen stand watch, outside the gate.

What has brought you here?
A) You arrive at dusk with the nervous merchant
B) You arrive at dusk, captured and in chains
C) You arrive at night to try a stealthy entry
D) You arrive at night with your gang to raid the merchant's guild
E) You proceed to the guardsmen and offer a password to them

mythic underworld: Evolution vs. Intelligent design

Intelligent design wins again! (wait... has it won in real life? no, but they keep on trying... )

Fungi, slimes, oozes. Plants & animals. Bugs, rats, bats. Bears, wolves, lions.
Sarcophagi, boxes, cases, chests. Barrels, urns, stone basins.
Cages, pits. Shelves, alcoves. Statues, idols, statuettes.

calling this on a draw on account of time-out.

Four doors at the Four Winds bar

Having seen sarkos

Been a BOC fan for 25 years, how many BOC-isms have slipped into my games? Not enough. There's a semi-consistant workshop of the telescopes, and astronomy plays an ambiguous but powerful force.
Characters have been attacked before by flaming telepaths... by goblins of Circe...
surely there's an arch-devil known by the title 'The Harvester of Eyes'...
...storms at land, storms at sea...
...gonna have to stat up a screaming diz-buster one of these days...
Cities on flame (with rock & roll)

Early BOC (the Stalk, Forrest Group/Soft White Underbelly) has got fantastic, elusive, evocative moments totally in-keeping with their development