Archive for December, 2015

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Samurai in Georgia (USA)? Yes, Indeed

10 December, 2015

Go see it!The Georgia Museum of Art in Athens, GA, has a small but very impressive display entitled Samurai: the Way of the Warrior.  It features artifacts from the Florentine Stibbert Museum including multiple full suits of armor (four of which are staged with weapons as well, including a beautiful naginata), a dozen of so helmets, swords and bows, and more.  It is not a huge exhibit but what is there is very impressive and worth the time to view if you are in the area.

The rest of the GMoA’s collections are pretty neat as well and the museum is free.  So, if you are out Athens way, drop in and take a look.  The exhibit runs through 3 Jan.

Photo from the GMoA site and used without permission.

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New Magic Item – Shepherd’s Axe for D&D5

9 December, 2015

Tool and weapons“Young man, if you wish to go into the mountains, take this axe, it has served me well,” said the old man.

“Thank you, grandfather,” said the young man with a bow.  “I shall use it well as you did.”

“Be careful, the mountains are dangerous and have no mercy for the incautious.”

“I will keep my wits about me and the axe close.”

Shepherd’s Axe

These weapons are a light axe with a long and straight wooden shaft, usually about three feet (one meter) long, often reinforced with metal.  Carved decoration on the wooden shafts is not uncommon as the owners usually have considerable time for such work.   The axe head has a narrow blade and the other end is blunt so it can be used as a hammer.  The whole is designed to comfortably fit into the owner’s hand so it could be used as a walking stick.

Read the rest of this entry ?

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Tuesday Magic Item – Shepherd’s Axe

8 December, 2015

A tool with many uses.“That is useful,” said Voddick.

“What?” asked Gollaon looking around.

Voddick nodded to the warrior using a long handled axe as a walking stick to aid him in the ascent up the hill.  “That.”

“Yes, a Shepherd’s axe, tool, weapon and walking stick all in one,” said Gollaon.  “It always struck me as a good idea but it really does not fit my style.”

“I might have to get one then.”

Shepherd’s Axe

These weapons are a light axe with a long and straight wooden shaft, usually about three feet (one meter) long, often reinforced with metal.  Carved decoration on the wooden shafts is not uncommon as the owners usually have considerable time for such work.   The axe head has a narrow blade and the other end is blunt so it can be used as a hammer.  The whole is designed to comfortably fit into the owner’s hand so it could be used as a walking stick.

The Shepherd’s Axe is a masterwork weapon but its primary use is as an all purpose tool and travel aid.  While using it as a walking stick, the user gains a +4 enhancement bonus to avoid slipping or tripping, the same bonus is applied to any Survival check that the axe can be used for.

The axe is extremely hardy (hardness 10, 21 hit points) and is unlikely to be damaged by normal wear.

Aura faint transmutation; CL 5th
Slot none; Price 1,508; Weight 2 lbs
Construction Requirements
Craft Magic Arms and Armor or Craft Wondrous Items, bull’s strength, cat’s grace, mending; Cost 600 + 308 for the axe

Notes: Inspired by the actual Shepherd’s axes of the Carpathians and made for the new character in the Petrichor game.  D&D5 version here.

Photo from Wikimedia Commons and used under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported license.

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Review – Vacant Ritual Assembly, Issues 1-3

8 December, 2015

Vacant Ritual Assembly is an OSR (primarily Lamentations of the Flame Princess) focused ‘zine published by Red Moon Medicine Show.  They are done in B&W and provide a mixture of house rules, inspiration, adventures, maps and interviews.

Issue 1 starts with Read the rest of this entry ?

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Rokugan SRIU Episode 7 “Spirited Evenings” (L5R Campaign Report)

3 December, 2015
Bayushi Kaeru doodle by her player

Bayushi Kaeru by her player

Back in the capitol, the yoriki are given some time away from their official duties to relax . . . of course it does not work out that way.

The Sparrow is left in the care of the Order of Benten, hoping that they will be able to cure his lingering sickness while Otaku Asilah is taken on a tour of the Seppun horse rearing lands by Seppun Bachin.

Bayushi Kaeru is called upon to assist the Scorpion Embassy, which unexpectedly finds itself should of priests, so she spend a week involved in rituals and blessing.  This earns her the thanks of Bayushi Gakuto, the Scorpion ambassador to the Imperial Court.

Hida Kenta receives a letter from home, including the news that several of his squadmates perished in combat.  Starting that evening, he begin having disturbing dreams and awakening disheveled and unrested.

Akodo Akina is adapting to life with one eye and is practicing intensively to do so.  She finds her dreams often become nightmarish and good sleep is difficult to come by.  And she still has the box.

A week has passed when Read the rest of this entry ?

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Tuesday Magic Item – Cloak of the Sun’s Chosen

2 December, 2015

Decorated with something like this perhaps“Now that is a fine cloak,” Gollaon admired as the hero swept by, light glimmering off the gold threads and chains.

“Too expensive for my tastes,” said Voddick.

“You have that right,” agreed Gollaon.  “The wearer of that is expected to turn back eternal darkness.”

Voddick tried for another glance at the cloak’s wearer but the crowd has already swallowed them up.  “High price for a cloak indeed.”

Cloak of the Sun’s Chosen

These cloaks are finely made, usually red to gold in color and decorated with intricate patterns in gold thread with gold (or at least gilded) metal fittings.  Created for the champions of the Sun, the powers of the cloak shift with the demands placed on the wearer.

The constant power of the cloak is that any beneficial spell cast on them by a divine caster is treated as if the caster were two levels higher.  The other powers depend on the season:

  • From the Winter Solstice to the Summer Solstice, the wearer gains a +2 enhancement bonus to Charisma and can cast guidance at will.  During this time, they are support to be acting as the Sun representative, aiding people and encouraging communication between communities.
  • From the Summer Solstice to the Autumnal Equinox, the wear gains the constant benefit of longstrider and endure elements spells and is treated as if they have the Endurance feat.  After the Summer Solstice, the Sun Chosen must begin preparing for the battle ahead, which usually includes a lot of traveling.
  • From the Autumnal Equinox to the Winter Solstice, the battle against the forces of eternal darkness is joined.  The wearer gains a +2 enhancement bonus to Strength and Constitution, is protected by an endure elements effect and can cast heroism (as a standard action) affecting both themselves and one person touched, once a day.

Naturally, these items are highly prized and jealously guarded by the worshipers of the Sun, and if the wearer is known to have earned the right to wear such, they gain a +2 circumstance bonus to any Diplomacy rolls with Sun-worshipers.

Aura strong transmutation; CL 11th
Slot shoulders; Price 14,000; Weight 1 lb
Construction Requirements
Create Wondrous Items, bear’s endurance, bull’s strength, endure elements, heroism; Cost 7,000

Notes: As requested, one item tied to the seasons.

Photo by dynamosquito and used under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic license.

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Welcome December, November has Passed

1 December, 2015

Today is the meteorological start of Winter, we need to wait for the 21st for the official Calendar start there of however.  December (as the “Dec” at the beginning implies) was the tenth month of the Roman calendar and other than being the last month, seems to have had no special significance to them.   But our December is a month filled with holidays.  So, the themes for this month on the Sea of Stars design journal will be Winter, festivals and gift: cursed gifts, divine gifts, magical gifts or whatever else we can think up.

If there is a particular idea inspired by the themes that you would like to see expanded upon, let me know and I will try to realize it.

The following posts were made on the Design Journal in November, 2015: Read the rest of this entry ?

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