Archive for September, 2013


Where did September go? October already! Ack!

30 September, 2013

October begins tomorrow, the eighth month of the Roman Calendar (thus that ‘Oct’ part of the name)  and tenth of ours.  It seems the Romans had no special association for October beyond Autumn, but we have Halloween at the end, so this month the Sea of Stars Design Journal will have Monsters as our theme as has become traditional for October.

If you have ideas for Monsters or horror theme you wish to see discussed here, let me know (here or in the sadly neglected forums) and I will try to make it happen.  However, I have been contracted to write an adventure (more details as allowed) which is due in Mid-October so that will be absorbing quite a bit of my time through mid-month.

September, 2013, saw the following posts on the journal:

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Tuesday Magic Item – Pigasus Medallion

24 September, 2013

Ad Astra per Alia Porci“Some of us are laying in the gutter, but we are looking to the stars,” said Tovian from where he lay in the street having been tossed out of the tavern by yet another offended patron.

Logus learned down and offered her hand.  “Come along Tovian.  One of these days telling the power that be be that they are bastards will get you more than tossed out.”

He struggled to his feet.  “But someone must stand up for the people!”

“Of course,” Logus sighed, letting Tovian lean on her shoulder.

Pigasus Medallion

These medallions are simple with a winged pig on one side and the motto “Ad astra per alia porci” (to the stars on the wings of a pig) and made of inexpensive metal, usually brass.

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Two short Shadowrun Adventure Reviews (one old, one new)

21 September, 2013

A pair of adventures, one new and one old, for the Shadowrun RPG:

Dark Angel, from 1993 (when Shadowrun was moving from 1st to 2nd edition), has the characters hired to find out what happened to an up and coming rocker (the Dark Angel of the title) and get the rights to his music back.  Of course, it is not a simple task, soon bringing the characters into conflict with the Yakuza.

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Dark Future Ahead 2 – Cyberpunk News

20 September, 2013

Is a CreepyDOL network watching you?  Researcher show how easy it is to spy on wifi devices.

Another step closer to cybereyes, the Argus bionic retina.  While the Smithsonian looks at the current state of bionics and what is on the horizon for replacement parts.

Perhaps you would like to work for an Alibi Agency or crash into the schemes of one?   Or visit the Lebanese party town of Faraya, there are certain missions that can easily be set here and Ricky is perfect to model a contact after.

Travel by Aeroscraft (the modern successor to the zeppelin) or at least see it deliver cargo.

Chinese architect Ma Yansong imagine a future of curves and greenery, a different sort of future building.  For a more ground up way to build -temporary- addition to cities, what about a container park?

While the movie may not be perfect, I still have to yet see it, but some of the concept art for Elysium by Aaron Beck is quite inspirational as is that done by Ben Mauro.


The Great Way – A Fantasy Fiction Kickstarter I am backing

19 September, 2013
Let us travel

Let us travel

Harry Connolly, author of the superb Twenty Palaces series of urban fantasy stories, is Kickstarting his new epic fantasy series the Great Way, which has weird magic, politics and an invasion by otherworldly beings, what more could you want?

Visit the Great Way Kickstarter page and see if it is something that will appeal to you.  Only $12 for an ebook copy of the first book, if you just want to give it a try.  I think it will be great.


Tuesday Magic Item – Bottle of Grog

17 September, 2013

Pre-grogged bottlesI watched in increasingly horrified fascination as Tetmuric slowly emptied the bottle of its sluggish and vicious contents.  It was a lumpy liquid, the consistence and color of poorly made oatmeal and there seemed to be almost no end to it.  As it poured out, it began to take a shape, layering upon itself forming into a rough human form that was filled out by the last of the liquid.

The being formed from the bottle suddenly coughed and blinked, its eyes were a drab brown and its skin moving from glossy to dull as it awoke.  It voice was mumbling but understandable.  “Your orders?” it asked of Tetmuric.

“Prepare yourself for battle,” Tetmuric said, handing it the bottle’s cock, which it stretched out into a shield and then the bottle it came from which it refashioned -somehow- into a spear.

“Yes, done,” it replied.

“Let us go,” said Tetmuric, his cape flaring as he spun, his new servant following him, as I did, just a little further back.

Bottle of Grog

These heavy bottles are stopped with a large cork sealed with wax marked with esoteric runes.  The contents of which are obviously thick and lumpy, even through the thick glass.

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New Monster – Vat Soldier (revised)

16 September, 2013

Vat Soldier
A lumpy, misshapen humanoid carrying a large shield and spear and wearing ill-fitting leather armor.  It does not seem very alert -or bright- but it seems strong enough to be dangerous especially with that spear.

Vat Soldier                                                  CR 2 (600 XP)
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Tuesday Magic Item – Mountaineer’s Hat

10 September, 2013

With a Hat and Monkey you are all set!“Lastly, son, never go up into the mountains without your hat,” Klavs said patting his boy on the shoulder.  “It will protect you and keep you warm.”

The boy nodded, holding his hat tightly before putting it on, “I will remember, Father.”

Mountaineer’s Hat

These cloth hats are made from dense felt, often dark green, and usually with a colored corded hatband for contrast.  Sometime they have a spray of feathers or brush at the side of the crown, if a brush it is almost alway made from the tail of a goat.

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Trip to Washington, DC, and Alexandria, VA, 2013.

10 September, 2013

Back from vacation, so things should be a little busier here, sorry for lack of posting while I was on vacation but . . . I was on vacation.

Another trip that started with a long drive, Athens to Alexandria (a shorter trip than across the Mediterranean though) and ended with us falling into bed at the end.

Monday, Labor Day, always a fun day to go into DC as all of the government offices are closed but not the Smithsonian Museums. Read the rest of this entry ?


Tuesday Magic Item – Image of Memory (revised)

3 September, 2013

I had seen the image that the painting showed before many time, the Castle at Vineroad Pass was a common theme in local art, and I had rode by it more than once on the Vineroad, one of the most important trade routes through the realm.  The detail and color was superb in this realization though.  I learned in closer and noticed something I had never seen before, a half open concealed door . . .

Image of Memory

These painting are usually in solid, heavy frames that protect the painting.  An unused one contains a blank canvass or wood sheet (or other painting surface) with a faintly reflective gray surface.   Once created the paintings are usually in beautiful, though often dreamlike, colors but range from impressionistic to hyper realistic depending on the desires of the creator.

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