Archive for September, 2016


September no more, into October

30 September, 2016

Tomorrows begins October, the eighth month of the Roman Calendar and tenth of ours.  It seems the Romans had no special association for October beyond Autumn, but we have Halloween to look forward to at the end.  Thusly the Sea of Stars Design Journal will again have Monsters as our theme as has become traditional for October.

If you have ideas for Monsters, let me know and I will try to make it happen.

September, 2016, saw the following posts on the journal:

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Tuesday Magic Item – Consanguinity Key (for Pathfinder and D&D5)

27 September, 2016

Unock the boodine“Is such an obsession healthy?” ask Voddick quietly.

Gollaon shrugged.  “Some think it is vital to keep a bloodline pure.  Though what they mean by purity varies widely,” he murmured back.

“I hope the wee lass passes, she seems a nice girl.”

“It will not be he fault if she does not . . . and we will protect her if she fails the test.”

“Aye,” nodded Voddick, his hand dropping to the hilt of his dagger.

Consanguinity Key

These keys are usually decorated with the heraldic arms of the commissioning family on the bow and other decorations, a clear crystal shaft is common as is it coming to a sharp point.  The level of decoration depends on the fashion when it was created, some are bejeweled, other are plain beyond a mark of ownership.

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Dark Future Ahead 18 – News from the ‘Net of a Cyberpunk bent

26 September, 2016

Still keeping my optics working looking for news to apply to your cyberpunk games and writings.

A way to defend against counterfeit drugs and maybe food too, miniature edible barcodes.  Inexpensive, practical and readable with a slight modification of a smart phone.

For some reason, the idea of edible food wrappers just seems very cyberpunk to me.  Full of advertising and nutrition!

This article is a little dated, from January of this year, but the images of offshore oil rigs parked in the North Sea off Scotland give you an instant and exciting place to set a mission.

They are watching you, Persistent Surveillance Systems, provides real time airborne camera coverage covering 30-square miles and running for hours upon end.  The privacy questions are many but why would megacorporations care about such?

DARPA is working on a system of battlefield drones for similar “persistent, wide-area surveillance” to watch out for other people’s drones, of course they would only use the technology for that one purpose, right?

Back in DFA16 we looked at wooden buildings for the future, now a seven story wooden building is being finished in Minneapolis.

What visions of the coming dark (green?) future have you seen recently?


Creative Sunday – Mayim Bialik and Grok Nation

25 September, 2016

grok-flagMayim Bialik who is the actress behind Amy Farrah Fowler on the Big Bang Theory (who I first encountered when she played Blossom in the show of the same name) who, besides being a very funny lady, is also an activist for many causes including quite a few Geek-related ones.

She has an excellent YouTube clip on the problems of being a geek, even in the age of geeks, and has created a group, Grok Nation, to reach out to people and provide a support network.  While her version of geekdom may not be yours, outreach for our community is always welcome in my book.

So, if you have time and interests, listen to her webclip and visit the site.  Let us all be geeks and nerds together.


Review – Genies (5E)

22 September, 2016

geniesGenies for Fifth Edition is not, as one might expect from the title, a book of genie-type creatures (though it does include four genies of legend) but rather primarily a book about genies and their magic.  If you are thinking of including genies in your D&D Fifth edition game, this product, though short, will give you useful ideas and tools to build from.

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Tuesday Magic Item – Exile’s Sword

20 September, 2016

Exiled Prince“They say they are Syoutlandish but they all talk like Eosiante,” whispered Voddick to Gollaon.

“And their dress is more comic opera than practical but their gold is good,” replied Gollaon equally quietly.

“True but . . .”

“Let them have their myth, my friend, we will profit from it either way.”

Exile’s Sword

These swords are always made in a particular culture’s style, though not always by a swordsmith from that culture, and are often heavily -occasionally lavishly- decorated.  These weapons are made for exiles who are planning to return, or, at least, for their children to return and reclaim what is rightfully theirs.

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Tuesday Magic Item – Deathspeaker’s Gorget (for Pathfinder and D&D5)

13 September, 2016

Through me, the dead speak“I am unsure if disturbing the dead is wise, even if it does have the information we need,” said Voddick watching the Deathspeaker work.

“Not my choice either, my friend,” answered Gollaon, “but we are not the one’s paying for the service.”

Voddick made a gesture to ward against evil.  “Still does not seem right.”

“Right or not, I just hope it works.”

Deathspeaker’s Gorget

These heavy gorgets are made of gold and decorated with runes and signets, and occasionally with holy symbols of the deities of dead.  They are always cold to the touch, never warming up from physica contact with the living.

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Tuesday Magic Item – Eclipse Arrow

6 September, 2016

Fight in the shadeVoddick lined up his shot and triggered his crossbow.  The lead horseman stumbled but kept coming.  “Gollaon, if you have a plan . . .”

Gollaon drew out a black arrow with golden fletching.  “I have been saving this for just such an occasion.”  He nocked the arrow, drew and released.

Voddick could not tell the result of the shot as the second it hit, the world around the lead rider went black and the sounds were terrible.

“Well, that worked.  Poor horses.”

Eclipse Arrow

These arrows are always highly distinct, black shafts and golden or silver fletching are common.  Sun or Moon, or both, imagery is often used to decorate the arrowhead.

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