Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Big GURPS Dungeon Fantasy News

Well hot damn, SJ Games is doing a kickstarter to release a powered by GURPS Dungeon Fantasy RPG. And it is a boxed set no less with five books inside.

While I wasn't expecting a boxed set, this is something that I been advocating for a long time over on the GURPS forum. There are posts from me from as early as 2008 saying that this should be done. As well as the equivalents for the other major genres like Science Fiction and Horror. If this is successful we may see similar Powered by GURPS RPGS from SJGames.

Also note they are stressing the Ready to Run aspect which was a point I kept hammering to point where I was probably very annoying to a lot of the GURPS staff.

Back in the early 2000s after a few campaign of GURPS 4e under my belt I wished for three things from SJ Games


  • Better support for the fantasy genre. Which I got in the Dungeon Fantasy
  • Ready to run out of box GURPS RPG. Which is now happening.
  • A Third party content program.
Dare I hope for a triple? Probably will have to wait a while considering how long it took for the first two.

I keep everybody posted on further developments.

An update on the Majestic Stars and other things


First off, I will posting part 20 of the Fantasy Sandbox series tomorrow. I plan to update the sandbox series every Tuesday and Thursday until it done. Here to hoping that plans don't go awry.

Some bad news on the Majestic Star front, the campaign fell apart due to real life circumstances so that is done for now.  Plus I contacted Green Ronin and they are not interested in any type of third party development for the AGE system right now. 

However luckily half of the work I did on the Majestic Star is pulled out of the d20 Modern SRD so I will able to reuse a lot of it for a similar game. Right now I am pulling together DnD 5e, d20 Modern, and the Mongoose Traveller SRD and seeing what I get. 

Hopefully I get enough done to inflict it on the J Squad at Gold Star Anime on the 10th.

So everybody knows Jason Kemp of Samardan Press pulled together an excellent retro-clone of Traveller with the Cepheus Engine System. What happened is that Mongoose Publishing went ahead and released a 2nd edition of Mongoose Traveller. The problem is that they decided to drop OGL support and the Logo program in favor using the Community Content program over on the various OBS web sites. Well that problem is fine if you want to publish Third Imperium related material. But for publishers with original setting it totally screwed them.

And just like DnD 4e, they don't have to wait for Mongoose to fix the situation, they returned using the 1st edition SRD and now using a variety of euphemism to indicate that they are still supporting traveller (2d6, etc).  This situation leads to people, like Jason Kemp, to create full rule sets to serve as a reference and play aid for these publishers.

The lesson to be learned from all this, is the if you are a publisher with a long established product line and you decide to break compatibility either totally or partially. Your customers won't view this as a favor. So you better have a damn good reason other than you want to "improve" it.
  

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

A Fantasy Sandbox in Detail Part XIX

After a long hiatus the How to Make a Fantasy Sandbox series is going to be finished.

Part XVIII
This is the nineteenth in a series detailing the 34 steps I recommended for making a Fantasy Sandbox Campaign. Today's post will cover part of step 27.
Pick or create 6 or 12 important buildings. Write a paragraph each
One reason for the long gap in time is that my original advice boiled down to “make something up”.  I wanted to write something more concrete than that. So over the next couple of projects and campaigns, I experimented with a variety of methods that helped me to make stuff up.

One thing I found is just how useful random tables are. I said in previous posts that the amount of ideas what we have for a project is a dozen or two, the rest we have to make it up on the fly as we write. A random table can very useful as it is far easier to explain something than it is to make something up out of whole cloth.

So let’s get started. In the last post we came up with a list of 75 buildings for the castle town of Mikva. Out of that list I am going to pick the following.

chandler
finesmith
finesmith
herbalist
jeweler
jeweler
leathercrafter*
legal
merchant
ostler
religious
sailor
scholar      
scholar      
tailor*
tavern        
tavern        
tavern
weaponsmith
weaver*

The ones I marked with an asterisk I am going to make notes on the guild as well as individual NPCs. There are 10 leathercrafters, 8 tailors, and 6 weavers so those will be probably the most important and powerful of the Mikva Guilds.

Next I refine the list with what I know from the description of Mikva
0403 Mikva (castle, town) HumanThis is a small castle town of 800 humans with several dozen Dwarves and Halflings. The castle itself sits on a bluff overlooking the bay. It is the seat of the current Baron of Piall, Argus Gervon. A several trading vessels stop here every week to pick up ingots from Southpoint. Before the fall monsoon season dozens of traders put in at Mikva to attend the Piall Fair. Here the island’s grain, and more importantly wool is traded for goods and supplies needed for the next year.
Currently the King’s Sheriff Tomar Revan is staying at the one of the wealthiest merchants in Mikva; the Honorable Orlon Beras. The Sheriff is currently using offices at the Mikva Trading Hall to conduct his investigation and any other Royal business. There is considerable tension between Baron Argus and the Sheriff.

Finally I will use NBos’ Inspiration Pad Pro 3 to generate some Tavern names.

Revised List
chandler
finesmith
finesmith
herbalist
jeweler
jeweler
leathercrafter*
King’s Sheriff
Mikva Trading Hall
ostler
Temple of Veritas
sailor
scholar      
scholar      
tailor*
The Red Wench (tavern)
The House of Fish (tavern)
The Oaken House (inn)
weaponsmith
weaver

Now for some inspiration from random tables.

Next random table time, I am going to randomly roll the NPC Personality of each of the shops. The tables I found to be the most useful is a combination of the ADnD's NPC personality traits and a table on NPC personality and motivations from Paizo Gamemastery Guide. I coded up both for use with Inspiration Pad Pro which you can download from here.

Raw Results for the NPC Personalities
Chandler
Alignment: chaotic good, Possessions: above average
Age: mature, General: imposing, Sanity: normal
General Tendencies: malevolent, Personality: Average: friendly, Disposition: morose,
Nature: hard-hearted, Honesty: scrupulous, Energy: energetic, Morals: immoral, Intellect: average,
Materialism: aesthetic, Bravery: cowardly, Thrift: wastrel, Piety: martyr/zealot, Interests: wines 8 spirits
Background: Military Veteran, Goal: Achieve a higher social rank, Physical: Calloused hands,
Personality: Tosses a coin to make decisions.,
Secrets: Has a secret illness, Reward: Loan you property

Finesmith
Alignment: neutral, Possessions: scant
Age: youthful, General: rough, Sanity: normal
General Tendencies: opinionated/contrary, Personality: Average: well-spoken, Disposition: unfeeling/insensitive,
Nature: forgiving, Honesty: deceitful, Energy: normal, Morals: lustful, Intellect: anti-intellectual,
Materialism: greedy, Bravery: craven, Thrift: mean, Piety: reverent, Interests: drugs
Background: Killed someone in self-defense, Goal: Marry a prince/princess, Physical: Homely,
Personality: Polite bus calls attention to it with elaborate bows or other gestures.,
Secrets: Is the bastard child of a noble, Reward: Offer the hand of a relative in marriage

Finesmith
Alignment: neutral evil, Possessions: average
Age: ancient, General: immaculate, Sanity: normal
General Tendencies: moody, Personality: Introverted: rude, Disposition: unfeeling/insensitive,
Nature: vengeful, Honesty: average, Energy: normal, Morals: virtuous, Intellect: average,
Materialism: greedy, Bravery: fearless, Thrift: average, Piety: reverent, Interests: politics
Background: Criminal who retired after betraying rest of gang, Goal: Find a better job, Physical: Very hairy,
Personality: Ask rude question without realizing they cause offense,
Secrets: Is a member of a secret local cult, Reward: Sabotage a bridge, road, or something equally important

Herbalist
Alignment: neutral, Possessions: scant
Age: youthful, General: imposing, Sanity: unstable
General Tendencies: malevolent, Personality: Average  Disposition: compassionate/sensitive,
Nature: vengeful, Honesty: very honorable, Energy: normal, Morals: virtuous, Intellect: dull,
Materialism: covetous, Bravery: normal, Thrift: mean, Piety: reverent, Interests: athletics
Background: Pious member of a notorious family, Goal: Find a better job, Physical: Scarred from pox,
Personality: Compulsively wipes or cleans things.,
Secrets: Is secretly related to another NPC, Reward: Take the blame (and punishment) for a minor crime

Jeweler
Alignment: neutral, Possessions: scant
Age: mature, General: dirty, Sanity: normal
General Tendencies: altruist, Personality: Extroverted: blustering, Disposition: morose,
Nature: forgiving, Honesty: liar, Energy: energetic, Morals: lustful, Intellect: scheming,
Materialism: avaricious, Bravery: normal, Thrift: spendthrift, Piety: average, Interests: none
Background: Criminal who retired after betraying rest of gang, Goal: Become the recipient of a actual miracle, Physical: Different colored eyes,
Personality: Blames trolls for every trouble he encounters,
Secrets: Has some orc blood in their family, Reward: Look after your home while you are away

Jeweler
Alignment: chaotic good, Possessions: above average
Age: ancient, General: rough, Sanity: unstable
General Tendencies: helpful/kindly, Personality: Extroverted: blustering, Disposition: proudlhaughty,
Nature: soft-hearted, Honesty: deceitful, Energy: lazy, Morals: amoral, Intellect: average,
Materialism: avaricious, Bravery: normal, Thrift: miserly, Piety: average, Interests: gambling
Background: Refugee from land overrun by evil, Goal: Move out of parents' house, Physical: Crack knuckles,
Personality: Give people nicknames or uses terms of endearment,
Secrets: Is an assassin, Reward: Offer the hand of a relative in marriage

leathercrafter*
Alignment: chaotic neutral, Possessions: scant
Age: young, General: rough, Sanity: normal
General Tendencies: precise/exacting, Personality: Average: well-spoken, Disposition: even tempered,
Nature: vengeful, Honesty: very honorable, Energy: lazy, Morals: virtuous, Intellect: active,
Materialism: intellectualist, Bravery: normal, Thrift: wastrel, Piety: average, Interests: handicrafts
Background: Outwitted a powerful monster, Goal: Become a hero, Physical: Jolly looking,
Personality: Acts like someone from a lower social class as a sing of solidarity but comes across offensive instead.,
Secrets: Knows how to placate an angry ghost, Reward: Follow someone for you

King’s Sheriff
Alignment: neutral evil, Possessions: superabundant
Age: young, General: dandyish, Sanity: normal
General Tendencies: altruist, Personality: Average: friendly, Disposition: even tempered,
Nature: jealous, Honesty: deceitful, Energy: lazy, Morals: aesthetic, Intellect: active,
Materialism: intellectualist, Bravery: fearless, Thrift: mean, Piety: average, Interests: none
Background: Practiced magic before a traumatizing accident, Goal: Find a new home for a mistreated animal, Physical: Double chinned,
Personality: Asks for advice or opinions about very unlikely situations,
Secrets: Is being blackmailed, Reward: Pay for your lodgings

Mikva Trading Hall
Alignment: neutral evil, Possessions: exceptional
Age: mature, General: foppish, Sanity: normal
General Tendencies: trusting, Personality: Average: aloof, Disposition: easy going,
Nature: hard-hearted, Honesty: average, Energy: energetic, Morals: normal, Intellect: active,
Materialism: avaricious, Bravery: cowardly, Thrift: wastrel, Piety: average, Interests: armor
Background: Criminal who retired after betraying rest of gang, Goal: Get cured of a disease of affliction, Physical: Pierced ears,
Personality: Delighted by puns and other sorts of work games,
Secrets: Has a secret stash of funds, Reward: Loan you property

Ostler
Alignment: lawful evil, Possessions: scant
Age: mature, General: immaculate, Sanity: unstable
General Tendencies: helpful/kindly, Personality: Average: diplomatic, Disposition: humble,
Nature: jealous, Honesty: very honorable, Energy: energetic, Morals: immoral, Intellect: ponderous,
Materialism: greedy, Bravery: brave, Thrift: spendthrift, Piety: reverent, Interests: athletics
Background: Left at the altar, Goal: Erase past failure with a single dramatic act, Physical: Sneezes a lot,
Personality: Question others about their background in order to determine if they are "suitable",
Secrets: Is a member of a secret local cult, Reward: Organize a festival or other public event

Temple of Veritas
Alignment: neutral, Possessions: average
Age: youthful, General: ragged, Sanity: normal
General Tendencies: optimist, Personality: Extroverted: overbearing, Disposition: morose,
Nature: soft-hearted, Honesty: truthful, Energy: normal, Morals: aesthetic, Intellect: brilliant,
Materialism: covetous, Bravery: foolhardy, Thrift: wastrel, Piety: martyr/zealot, Interests: husbandry
Background: Ran for office and suffered a humiliating defeat, Goal: Earn enough money to retire, Physical: Covered in tattoos,
Personality: Name drops constantly,
Secrets: Knows how to get the oracle to answer truthfully, Reward: Boycott one of you rivals or enemies

Sailor
Alignment: lawful evil, Possessions: average
Age: young, General: imposing, Sanity: normal
General Tendencies: fanatical/obsessive, Personality: Average: abrasive, Disposition: humble,
Nature: vengeful, Honesty: average, Energy: normal, Morals: lustful, Intellect: average,
Materialism: intellectualist, Bravery: normal, Thrift: spendthrift, Piety: impious, Interests: hunting
Background: Killed someone in self-defense, Goal: Solve a mystery no one else really cares about, Physical: Tall,
Personality: Ask a kobold glove puppet it's opinion at inopportune moments.,
Secrets: Murdered spouse, Reward: Call in an important favor and use it one your behalf

scholar  
Alignment: neutral good, Possessions: superabundant
Age: mature, General: imposing, Sanity: maniacal
General Tendencies: studious, Personality: Introverted: taciturn, Disposition: even tempered,
Nature: forgiving, Honesty: average, Energy: slothful, Morals: normal, Intellect: active,
Materialism: greedy, Bravery: craven, Thrift: wastrel, Piety: iconoclastic, Interests: handicrafts
Background: Once owned an inn that was burnt down by bandits, Goal: Impress a disapproving parent, Physical: Many tattoos,
Personality: Always has a reason why something won't work,
Secrets: has a secret identity, Reward: Pay for your meals
   
scholar 
Alignment: neutral good, Possessions: superabundant
Age: young, General: ragged, Sanity: normal
General Tendencies: careless, Personality: Average: hostile, Disposition: compassionate/sensitive,
Nature: hard-hearted, Honesty: truthful, Energy: normal, Morals: virtuous, Intellect: scheming,
Materialism: covetous, Bravery: cowardly, Thrift: miserly, Piety: average, Interests: history
Background: Ran away as a youth and joined the circus., Goal: Travel, Physical: Terrible facial disease,
Personality: Always has a reason why something won't work,
Secrets: Has some orc blood in their family, Reward: Wash or mend your clothes and equipment
     
tailor*
Alignment: neutral good, Possessions: none
Age: mature, General: dandyish, Sanity: normal
General Tendencies: foul/barbaric, Personality: Average: abrasive, Disposition: humble,
Nature: soft-hearted, Honesty: scrupulous, Energy: driven, Morals: immoral, Intellect: ponderous,
Materialism: avaricious, Bravery: brave, Thrift: miserly, Piety: average, Interests: legends
Background: Comes from a long line of tanners, Goal: Become a monster, Physical: Winks a lot,
Personality: Refers to self in third person,
Secrets: Knows why no one in the village eats meat anymore., Reward: Sell you goods at a discount

The Red Wench (tavern)
Alignment: lawful neutral, Possessions: average
Age: mature, General: foppish, Sanity: unstable
General Tendencies: precise/exacting, Personality: Average: diplomatic, Disposition: compassionate/sensitive,
Nature: vengeful, Honesty: average, Energy: lazy, Morals: normal, Intellect: average,
Materialism: avaricious, Bravery: brave, Thrift: average, Piety: average, Interests: none
Background: Falsely convicted and escaped from jail., Goal: Get in better shape and learn to fight, Physical: Twitches,
Personality: Give people nicknames or uses terms of endearment,
Secrets: Is an obsessive collector hoarder, Reward: Bury or high something dangerous
   
The House of Fish (tavern)
Alignment: lawful neutral, Possessions: average
Age: mature, General: imposing, Sanity: normal
General Tendencies: malevolent, Personality: Average: friendly, Disposition: morose,
Nature: hard-hearted, Honesty: average, Energy: normal, Morals: amoral, Intellect: anti-intellectual,
Materialism: intellectualist, Bravery: normal, Thrift: average, Piety: impious, Interests: books & scrolls
Background: Wanted for serious crime, Goal: Visit the next village, Physical: Covered in pustules,
Personality: Collects small, relatively worthless objects like spoons, salt shaker, or win corks; enthusiastically inspects any encountered and extols their "unique" qualities,
Secrets: Knows command word for a magic item, Reward: Follow someone for you
     
The Oaken House (tavern)
Alignment: lawful good, Possessions: above average
Age: mature, General: non-descript, Sanity: normal
General Tendencies: pessimist, Personality: Average: , Disposition: ,
Nature: hard-hearted, Honesty: deceitful, Energy: normal, Morals: lustful, Intellect: scheming,
Materialism: average, Bravery: normal, Thrift: spendthrift, Piety: pious, Interests: community service
Background: Left at the altar, Goal: Solve a murder, Physical: Moustache,
Personality: Says everything in a profound way,
Secrets: Knows why no one in the village eats meat anymore., Reward: Spy on your behalf

Weaponsmith
Alignment: neutral, Possessions: none
Age: young, General: clean, Sanity: unstable
General Tendencies: trusting, Personality: Extroverted: friendly, Disposition: proud/haughty,
Nature: jealous, Honesty: scrupulous, Energy: slothful, Morals: lusty, Intellect: dull,
Materialism: covetous, Bravery: brave, Thrift: miserly, Piety: irreverent, Interests: husbandry
Background: Pledged to keep a fantastic secret, Goal: Learn to gamble, Physical: Bald,
Personality: Complains about smells no one else notices,
Secrets: Knows where a magic item is buried, Reward: Tend your mount

Weaver*
Alignment: neutral, Possessions: scant
Age: ancient, General: ragged, Sanity: normal
General Tendencies: sober, Personality: Average: aloof, Disposition: hot tempered,
Nature: forgiving, Honesty: deceitful, Energy: slothful, Morals: aesthetic, Intellect: anti-intellectual,
Materialism: avaricious, Bravery: fearless, Thrift: mean, Piety: saintly, Interests: none
Background: Killed someone in self-defense, Goal: Find a better job, Physical: One eye,
Personality: Makes up seemingly arbitrary rules etiquette.,
Secrets: Is a paladin working undercover, Reward: Compose a poem praising your prowess

That it for part XIX next is Part XX where I translate the raw work above into actual details.

Monday, June 13, 2016

Majestic Stars Update


Back in the early 90's I would hand out updates before each session. Updates were one page documents covering various aspect of the Majestic Wilderlands. They were meant as easily digestible chunks of the back story of the setting. Some were pretty broad while other were specific.

So I am going to revive the tradition for the Majestic Stars.

Majestic Stars Update #1


What year it is?
The year is 2425.

Where is the campaign located at?
The Artemis Space Station located in the HiP 38392 system. The main star classification is G7V, slightly cooler than Earth’ Sun which is G2V.

What is the Artemis Station?
It is a commercial station built by the Selene Republic with aid from all of the major powers to handle trade and culture exchange with the Saurian Commonwealth. It is in the L5 point between the planet Selene and its Sun. There is small but rich asteroid field at the L5 point that is known as the Outback. It is actively mined by Belters to provide the station with resources.

The station can support a permanent population of up to 35,000 sentient beings. There are currently 30,000 humans, 2,000 Saurians, and 1,000 Kang’rits resident on the station. The station has been in operation for two years.

Who runs the Station?
The Astroguard handles the day to day administration of the station. The Selene Republic supplies magistrates and ombudsmen to handle judicial affairs. Overall station policy and contact with the Saurian Commonwealth is handled by a United Colony advisory council with representatives from all the major human powers and headed by a governor appointed by the Selene Republic.

The current governor is Rosette Alcantar who works with the Station’s commander, Captain Anton Pikova of the Astroguard.

What is the Outback?
It is a small asteroid field circling the L5 point between Selene and its sun. It is home to one thousand belters mining volatiles and metals for processing at the station. The main station is buried in the asteroid Perth with 200 permanent residents and up to 300 transits at any one time.



What are the United Colonies?
The United Colonies are a loose association of major and minor powers. It is similar to the 20th/21st century United Nations however it is more focused on managing certain interstellar organizations than being a diplomatic forum.

The two most important organizations it manages are the Astroguard and the Interstellar Astronomical Union (IAU). The Astroguard are a multi-national military dedicated to exploration, search & rescue, and anti-piracy patrols. They function as an interstellar Coast Guard. The Interstellar Astronomical Union registers space claims and acts as investigation agency of human right abuses.

Who are the major powers?
They are the Earth Union, the United States centered on Alpha Centauri. The United Kingdom, the French Union, and the German Federation centered on Epsilon Eridani. And the People’s Republic of the Chinese centered on Epsilon Indi.

There are numerous smaller independent powers as result of the human diaspora. It is not uncommon for worlds and star systems to be divided into multiple independent nations, colonies, etc.

Who are the Saurians?
The Saurians are not the ancient race sentient dinosaurs but more recently evolved. First contact was 50 years ago and it was with a group of Saurians calling themselves the Commonwealth. It appears that the dominant Saurian culture is a single empire ruled by an immortal emperor. The Commonwealth are comprised of dissidents and refugees who have fled beyond the borders of imperial space. The Saurians appears to be a century ahead of humanity in technology.

Current News, January 3rd 2425

The Barron Consulate has petitioned the United Colonies for a seat on the Artemis Station’s advisory council.

Ellena Bucanan dies in from an illegal firework display occurring during the New Year Festival held by the Mesic Dockworkers Coop.

Protein output triples in 2424 over 2423. Agriculture Commissioner Arios Koviria is to receive this year’s Disheva Award of Excellence.

Newton Kader is to be sentenced next Friday, the 10th, after being found guilty of embezzling funds from the Four Stars Credit Union.

Arguments continues after last week’s heated exchange at the Station Round Table over the rising transport fees to the Outback and Selene.

New stationwide update to fabricators is being posted on the 4th to censor the manufacture of Strokon and Waxet, two drugs that were found to be highly addictive to Saurians.

The Station Maintenance schedule has been posted. Click to find scheduled shutdowns and service reductions.

Diturisaurs were found to be the cause of the power outage on Level 4’s Block E-4. Residents are advised to call 811 to report any sightings.


On Monday the 6th, the Commonwealth-Selene Cultural Exchange will make the works of K’Sudai, A’Morko, and K’Tipa available on the Omninet. The three are noted historical fiction authors in Saurian literature. February’s drop will be focused on the romance genre.

Monday, June 6, 2016

Majestic Stars Session 1

The quote of the evening
Who was your boss?
The husband of the women I slept with.
Was your boss the Iguana guy?
No I don't sleep with Iguanas.
I am not judging.
We had our first session of the Majestic Stars campaign. I am using a modified Fantasy AGE ruleset. There are no classes just a single level progression chart. Everybody starts off with 10 points to spend on attributes. The attributes are Charisma, Constitution, Dexterity, Intelligence, Perception, Psi, Strength, and Willpower.

Instead of focuses we have skills. If you don't have the skill, you can use it but you are at -2 on the roll. One point will get it at +0, another at +1,  and so on. Every character starts with 3 points to spend on skills.

The races are Belter, Human, Kang'rits, and Saurian. Each character picks a race and gets two rolls on the benefit table for that race.

The talents are pretty the same but been reworked to reflect the science fiction genre of the campaign. There is now a pistol and rifleman style. As there are no classes the prerequisites have been adjusted so that you have to focus on the same attributes as you had too when there was classes. During character generation you get 3 points to spend on talents or skills.

I created a system of Psionics that I will present in a later post. It has five areas; Augment, Control, Empathy, Healing, and Telepathy. Each has four specific discipline that are learned the same way talents are.

January 5th 2425
The Crew
Luc Fer - a man with connection who has arrived on the Artemis Station to make his own mark. He also a psionic.
Carl LeRoche - a belter and a corrupt cop working as station security. 
Mikael Sharp - a human medic yearning for adventure.

Luc Fer has one last job to do, to hand deliver a data wafer that is the one half of a one use code pad. Each time a message is exchange the encryption key is discarded and the next one is used. Both data wafers have to be synced so they both start at the same key. It is one the few pieces of data in the 25th century that is moved by hand.

Luc Fer was met at the gate by Carl LeRoche. LeRoche was given an off the book job by his boss to escort Luc Fer to his contact, Thaddeus Vanlith. While heading to the lifts, LeRoche was accosted by a drunk Astroguard medic who want to use the security as a demonstration of the effect of living in low gravity. LeRoche was having none of it and hit him once with the stunstick and left him quivering on the ground.

When they arrived at Vanlith's office to deliver the wafer a thug stepped out with a shotgun. Both Luc Fur and LeRoche won initiative. The ensuing fight was short and brutal between Luc Fer psionic and LeRoche's aim. 

Inside they found Thaddeus Vanlith battered and beaten. LeRoche calls his boss who dispatches medical assistance. Luc Fer decides his job is done, drops the data wafer, and leaves.



Mikael Sharp arrives and starts stabilizing the surviving thugs. LeRoches is looking through Vanlith's files and find that he was working on a deal to trade a lot of colony supplies and 100,000 credits (a hefty sum) in exchange for genetic information. Mikael happens to see the genetic reports and manages to download a copy for himself. He explains that the genetic information is about the NPTN gene which is the primary gene that controls psionic ability in humans. Only that this gene is definitely non-human. Also found was a calling card for C'Treni a Saurian visiting the station on a six month cultural exchange.

The everybody splits, Luc Fer secures an apartment, LeRoches reports back at the office working on the paperwork and also planning what to do next with the information. Mikael gets everybody to the trauma center and does some research and finds out where C'Treni has been staying. Also fine some files that are meant to be turned over to Luc Fer.

Sharp goes the police station and meets up with LeRoche, together they decide to find Luc Fer at his new apartment. After talking about what been found  they all decided to head back to the apartment to look at what else they can find.

And that where the session ended with 300 xp awarded.

The Good
Well I am finally managing to run a campaign with my own original science fiction setting that I have been working on forever. It started with me using the Universe RPG map and plotting out a future history. Universe didn't have a firm background and I decided to make one. Later I used the stellar data from 2300AD (which went out to 60 light years vs. 30 light years of Universe) to expand my work. However compared to Traveller, Babylon 5, and Star Trek, I never got a sense of what I was going to do with the setting.

I felt in all but one important aspect my Fantasy Age science fiction adaption worked rather well. There are some gaps and weak points, but I can smooth them out with enough actual play. The combat wasn't as DnDish as I thought it would be. 

The OK
Well I got the party together in a semi-plausible way, but it was weak really weak. Next time I will have everybody work together to come up with the reason of why they are a time.

The Bad
The first level ability of Control is a +2 bonus to Charisma skills for the next ten minutes. That is probably a bit weak compared to the other psi abilities. I will probably change it to a one sentence command that takes place if the target fails a willpower test. I will need to get some feedback on this.

For all the work I put into everything, the players didn't get a good feel of the setting. One thing that was a bit "out there" is the fact that advances in fabrication technology has made many material goods effectively free. However, the good stuff still costs money. Anything involving any type of service still costs money. And that didn't come across well. So the players were wondering why people did anything at all?

The above was directly related to me running out of time to make all the things I normally do for the Majestic Wilderlands. One of which is a half to one page briefing on various bits of setting information.

The Future
Next time I should have more background info prepared and with the latest fixes for the rules. I am still weak on equipment and working on coming up with items. The big challenge here is that I am doing essentially an urban campaign, in a brand new setting, using the science fiction genre which I don't often run.



The Artemis Station coming together

I got a skeleton of the initial adventure fleshed out for my new campaign Majestic Stars campaign.

I also added some more details to the Artemis Station which is the setting of the campaign. First the overview schematic.

And now the maps of the individual levels.


I am sure some of you will look at the production rings (along with the free space in the garden) and it looks like they are undersized for a station with a population of 35,000 sentients.

One aspect of the technology of the Majestic Stars is the existence of 3D Fabricators several generations beyond what we have now. One kind of fabricator is called the Food Fab. It takes two cartridges, a CHON pack which consist of Carbon, Hydrogen, Oxygen, and Nitrogen to provide the basic raw material for fabricating food. Then there is the M-Pack or mineral pack. Which provides the trace element needed for health and flavoring. The belters of the Artemis local solar system  supply the CHON, however the M-Pack are manufactured onboard the station from the output of the production rings. Four hundred acres devoted to crop and protein product is more than enough to supply the M-packs needed by 35,000 sentient.

Sunday, May 29, 2016

Majestic Stars Campaign Progress

With my friend Dwayne Fantasy Age campaign ended, I am up next. After talking with everybody, I am going to run my first Majestic Campaign. I will be using a heavily modified variant of Fantasy/Dragon Age as everybody in the Monday night group really likes that system. Luckily the AGE system is flexible enough that it can still be AGE but only a hop and a skip to converting everything I am writing into White Star or similar system.

I like to design some graphics to help me get into the mode. I started out with this.


But everybody though it was too busy. So after it hashing it out, I came up with this.


Because this is the first campaign I booted up from scratch in ages. We also decided to focus on a space station. I been working on this setting for a long time but the time, rules, and inspiration never seem to quite jell compared to the other campaign I ran including the Third Imperium of Traveller. But having just got done watching the Expanse, the enthusiasm behind White Star, and Stars without Number, and the simplicity of the AGE system, it is all coming together.

The campaign is going to be centered around the Artemis Space station on the fringe of human space. it is a trade hub and diplomatic station with the Commonwealth, a recently contacted interstellar civilization of sentient dinosaurs. Rumors are getting around, that the Commonwealth are in reality refugees and dissident who have fled a vast and ancient empire of their own kind. An empire with technology and wealth centuries ahead of humanity.

However there is no grand federation united all of humanity. Humankind is still very much divided into nations. The great powers of the 21st century have their 25th century descendants, who stand alongside a thousand words founded by every group imaginable from Earth.  Some are colonies of the great powers, while others fiercely guard their independence. The only group that everybody recognizes are the Astroguard, a multi-national force dedicated to search and rescue as well as keeping the interstellar spacelanes safe.


When first contact was made with the Commonwealth, ten years ago, the Selene Republic was in the fortunate position of sitting astride the only path of stars leading to the Saurians. With aid from the Astroguard and the major powers, they constructed the Artemis Station to serve as a commercial hub between Humanity and the Saurians. It was constructed as a Bernal Sphere capable of housing 25,000 people. The station logistics was turned over the Astroguard, while the day to day governing was handled by by a Selene governor, his magistrates along with law enforcement hired by the republic. The Selene governor works with the Astroguard commander and an advisory council of  human ambassadors to handle relations with Commonwealth and the Saurians. Now two years in operation, station has become a gold rush town.