Archive for February, 2012

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March forward out of February

29 February, 2012

Tomorrow, March begins and the Equinox and Spring move near.  March gains its name from the Roman month Martius which gains its name from Mars, the Roman god of war (and much less of a bully than his Greek counterpart Ares).

So, the theme for March will be the military and things martial.  As usual, if there is anything in particular you would like to see let me know.

February, 2012, journal saw the following posts here:

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New Magic Item – Regent’s Crown

29 February, 2012

When Northangan, the Prince Regent, tried to murder his wife -the rightful queen- he found that each blow of his dagger opened the same wound upon his body.  He dropped the weapon and begged her forgiveness.

Three days later, when the executioner’s axe took Northangan’s head, there was no echoing wound on the queen’s neck.

Regent’s Crown

These items are surprisingly plain given their name, they are a simple band of silver inlaid with symbols of the kingdom on the outside in gold with the subtle use of gems.  The inside has a list of the ruling royalty etched in gold.  Only close examination will reveal how valuable the circlet actually is.  Given to the queen or prince regent of a kingdom, they serve to protect and guide both the wearer and their royal spouse.  The Regent’s Crown, while worn, is virtually invisible blending in with the wearer’s hair (or lack thereof) and fitting comfortably beneath any wig or other headgear.

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Places in the Sea of Stars – The Legalist Monarchy of Arachast

27 February, 2012

“Learn the law, obey the law, live the law.  Such is the way of Arachast.”

The Legalist Monarchy of Arachast

Law or Justice?

Justice?

In the aftermath of the sundering, the kingdom of Arachast suffered heavily.  Rivers changed course or dried up, the climate shifted instantly, crops that once grew well now died.  The king could not handle the strain and broke, the only one with the status to take over was the high judge.  She did not shirk this task and imposed order, from this order flowed new rules and new laws, reordering the kingdom from top to bottom.  The High Judge’s daughter, also a trained legal scholar, married the crown prince, their son was the first High Judge-King of Arachast.

Arachast runs on an efficient set of complex laws administered from the capital of Arachasti.  The walls of the throne room of the palace is inscribed with the basic laws of the land and are open to students and visitors when court is not in session.  Vast legal libraries and courts of law are scattered across the capital, many of the jurists are in constant rivalry for status and positions.

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Review – Opponents Unlimited

25 February, 2012

Opponents Unlimited is a collection of supervillains, lone villains and groups, most of which are very offbeat or even outright zany.  For colorful and unusual characters, it is worth a look.

Opponents Unlimited is a 33-page PDF (31-pages after you remove the covers) for the Villains & Vigilantes RPG written by Stephen Jones and published by Fantasy Games Unlimited.  This is a scan of the original physical book, while a clean scan it makes the product a large file and unsearchable, both of which are inconvenient.

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Review – People’s Revolution (for M&M)

24 February, 2012

People’s Revolution is a resource for Golden Age / World War II superheroic roleplaying giving the GM access to the Soviet Superteam for use as troublesome allies during WW2 or as rivals and enemies for Silver Age games.  It is a solid resource for two eras (or more) of superheroic campaigns.

Amazing Stories of World War II: People’s Revolution is a 18-page PDF (15-pages after you remove the cover and OGL pages) for the Mutants & Masterminds (3rd Edition) RPG written by Mike Lafferty and Leon Chang and published by RPGObjects.  This is issue 5 of RPGObjects’ Amazing Stories of World War II line.

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Review – Verne

24 February, 2012

Verne is a useful resource for anyone planning a steampunk or Victorian inspired game, especially if you are using the EABA system, but much of the information is just information on the era.  It provides a solid framework for Victorian adventuring and worth taking a look at if you are thinking of a campaign in that era.

Verne v 1.0 “not your grandfather’s steampunk . . .” is a 218-page PDF (215-pages if you remove the cover and EABA OGL pages) for the EABA RPG written by Greg Porter and published by BTRC (Blackburn Tactical Research Center).  It is nicely book-marked for easy accessibility.

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Tuesday Magic Item – Whorl Buckler

21 February, 2012

The young rapscallion of a thief danced through the crowd, the mage-guards chasing after him, their wands at the ready.  On the rare occasion they had a clear shot through the milling people, she deflected their magic with a spiral shaped buckler.

“How is she doing that?” grumbled the scholar-sargent.  “Keep after that thief!”  He plodded on behind the pursuit, regretting spending too much time behind a desk.

not shelled yet

Pre-buckler

Two young mage-guard finally got in front of her.  One of them lashed out with a spell of holding and then toppled backward as his spell was reflect back upon him but the thief’s buckler . . . after that, the mage-guard lost interest in the pursuit long enough for the rogue to escape.

Whorl Buckler

These rare shields are made from the apical whorl of certain usually large gastropods (such as the flail snail) alchemically treated, the outer edge reinforced with bronze polished to a mirror shine.

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Pattern Seekers – Episode 8: Gold, Gold, Gold (Part 3)

20 February, 2012

Having captured and interrogated (and, Bradley hopes, turned and recruited) the three captured bandits.  Our heroes planned to locate the bandits camp and then track them down the next morning.  But before dawn the sorcerer, Zandrick, thought he had seen the diamond eagle and scaled one of the mountains in pursuit and was not there to accompany his companions.*

Following the directions of the captured bandits, they easily find the recently abandoned camp of the bandits.  Thea and Pho begin tracking while the others poke around the camp.  Bradley noting something shiny in the ashes of the main camp fire, it is a small silver figure of a four-armed ape.  As soon as he picks it up, the figure starts to grow and move, so Bradley throws it . . . and Malik, the monk, runs and catches it!  As the figure expands out into a full nine-foot tall girallon, Malik tries -and fails- to wrestle it to the ground.  Combat ensues!  Even though our heroes entirely have the jump on the girallon, it is a punishing opponent.  It even managed to put down Dr Martin in his beast form, if it had just managed to hit its rend, it would have torn him apart.  Once defeated, it shrinks back to being a figure albeit a broken one.

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Review: Kingmaker

19 February, 2012

Kingmaker is a useful and well-built adventure to start a group with as it is full of options and opportunities in play, not restricting a new group to any forced path.  It should serve as solid building block for a new campaign and contains a great deal of play in a small package.

Kingmaker: for 2-8 1st level characters is an 18-page PDF (15-pages if you remove the covers and OGL page) for any Retroclone RPG (such as OSRIC or Labyrinth Lord) written by Eric Jones and published by Ludibrium Games.  This is volume 1 of Ludibrium Games’ Sessions line.

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Review – Enemies of the Empire

17 February, 2012

The Enemies of the Empire are surprisingly numerous and the reference to them is nearly indispensable for any Legends of the Five Rings campaign that is not focused purely on courtly machinations (and there are even useful resources for that as well).  It provides a wealth of information and along useful new game mechanics and character options.

Enemies of the Empire, a sourcebook for the Legends of the Five Rings RPG (4th edition) is a 290-page PDF (288 pages if you remove the covers), written by Shawn Carman, Robert Hobart, Brian Yoon; Kevin Blake, Mikael Brodu, Patrick Duke, Dave Laderoute, Maxime Lemaire, Jacob Ross, Ray Rupp, Rich Wulf, and Ryan Reese and published by AEG.

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