Archive for February, 2020

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Long March out of February

29 February, 2020

Mars

With the start of March, after the slightly longer than usual February, the Equinox and Spring draw ever nearer.  The name of March is drawn from the Roman month Martius which in turn gains its name from Mars, as you would expect.  Mars being the Roman god of war (and more a soldier’s god than a warrior as contrasted with his Greek counterpart Ares)

The theme for March will again be the military and things martial.  If there is anything in particular you would like to see, please let me know.  I will try to do something, spell or item, for the Equinox as well.

February, 2020, saw the following post in the journal:

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Legends and Lore – The Sun, the Last of the Gods

27 February, 2020

This month’s RPG Blog Carnival is Legends and Lore hosted by Endarra.  As I like to contribute to the Carnivals when I can, here is my addition:

A Sun God something like thisWhen the dragons went to war with the gods, the Empress had a plan, she had studied the gods for hundreds of years, preparing weapons and magics for this confrontation.  She knew that the majority of the gods were too dangerous to let live but one god, the Sun, could not be killed for then the world would be plunged into eternal darkness.  The Sun had to be captured, chained and convinced to keep up his tasks.

She had prepared chains made of black steel and platinum quenched in dragon’s blood, imbued with the essence of beings of the deep frost, reinforced with draconic magic to survive even the raging of the Sun.  But more importantly, she had a plan.

The Sun was overpowered and bound, it was almost the first act of the war, and left to rage in the sky as the dragons and gods battled and died.  He was able to see his sister, the Moon, escape from the dragons as she tried to rescue him fleeing swiftly away from the grasping claws and teeth of the Empress’ guard.  He struggled and raged until the Empress appeared leading one hundred and one of his high priests and priestesses each with a golden collar around their neck.  The Empress explain that each time the Sun tried to break his bonds, the heat and fury would be transmitted to the collars in sequence.  Not trusting the dragons word, the Sun released a flare of solar fire against the chains . . . and the two eldest high priests collapsed into glowing ash under the radiant flame of the Sun.  The Empress has the collars cleaned and set around the necks of two more of the Sun’s followers.  He bowed his head as asked what she wanted.

Only what you have done since the world was young, bring light and warmth to the world and its people, she said.  Serve as you always have and your temples and followers are safe.  Chafing but seeing no other way to keep his worshipers safe, he agreed and since then has served at the Empress’ will.

The Empress ensures he is well tended with servants, good food and drink, books and music; The Sun is a pampered prisoner but a prisoner all the same.  The rare child from his dalliances with the servants are raised in the Imperial household and each wears a golden collar.

Notes: Image of Apollo from the Rijks Museum and is in the Public Domain.

Additional Notes: Endarra has taken itself offline so the links to the L&L Blog Carnival are no longer functional and the link to their main page is just an announcement that they are closing down.  A bit sad.  You can visit the site is it heyday via the Internet Archive here.

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Tuesday Magic Item – Dagger of Cupidity

25 February, 2020

A lovely dagger for a crimeVoddick fell back to join Gollaon.  “I do not trust our new associate, he seem far too interested in coin and not enough on the job at hand.”

“I had noticed that as well,” said Gollaon.

“Yesterday, Koz said that she saw him rifling a passed out drunk for loose coins.”

“Yes, he takes every chance to enrich himself.  We will have to watch out so that does not cause us trouble or drag us into danger.”

Voddick nodded.

Dagger of Cupidity

The hilts of these daggers are well decorated but close examination will usually reveal the decoration is gilding and semiprecious stones or cut glass.  The blades are entirely practical and usually blued so as not to catch the light.

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Down and Out in Taren Kost – Campaign Report Episode 14 – Road to Ruins

22 February, 2020

This takes place following Episode 13.

Our cast for this episode (for more information on the game background, see here):

Reed Greenbottle and Skathfka, later joined by Agrippa.  (Mercutio is a GMC for this episode.)

Episode 14: Road to Ruins

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Tuesday Magic Item – Serpentsoul Dagger

18 February, 2020

Like this but wrap the hilt in snakeskinVoddick kicked the dagger away from the body of their attacker.  “Best to be sure.”

Gollain nodded, his sword still pointed at the still form.  “Who hates us enough to send a killer after us when we are relaxing?”

“Shall I make a list?  We may be here some time,” sighed Voddick.

“Truth.  We do end up annoying a considerable number of powerful people,” said Gollaon.  “But why now?  We have not been a thorn in anyone’s side in months.”

Voddick just shrugged.

Serpentsoul Dagger

These daggers have beautiful watered steel blades that shimmer like snake skin, their grips are always made of snake skin and usually their sheaths are too,  Held, it is a weapon that wants to be used, wants to strike.  Made in secret by members of a snake-demon cult, over the years some these weapons have fallen into the hands of outsiders.

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Superheroes – Once upon a Time in 1967 – Getting Started

16 February, 2020

SuperheroineSo, we got together for our first session of Masks in the 1960s (see campaign outline here) unfortunately, we only got through character creation and not onto the first issue but soon.

Character creation for Masks is fairly involved, even more so than most Powered by the Apocalypse games, as it aims to tie the characters together as a coherent group who have already come together and defeated their first big bad.

Our heroes are: Read the rest of this entry ?

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Superheroes – Out of the 1960s – A Campaign Statblock

12 February, 2020

Mekano

This is a more focused pitch for the first part of my Superheroes – Tomorrow and Today idea for a campaign.

Superheroes – Out of the 1960s

It is a time of difficulty and change, the US is locked in an endless war with an implacable enemy spending blood and money fighting in foreign fields, technology is changing rapidly and changing how we view the world, the generations are in conflict over what direction the country is going, radicals on the left and right are tearing the nation apart . . . It is the 1960s . . . (and what does the future hold?)

A brave group of new heroes gather together to build a better future out of the chaos of a changing world. Read the rest of this entry ?

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Heroes Inc – Reflections looking Back

12 February, 2020

Heroes Incorporated, two decades on

The EMpire State Building, home of Heroes Inc HQIt was a great campaign with great people, the core of the group -Peter, Daniel and Tom- were also superhero genre fiends like me with Steve and Dave happy to join in.  Steve was also a history buff helping with context.  We played the game, a lot, forty to fifty session went into creating all those issues, and talked about it on three levels:

  • What was in the in the game/comic.
  • The editorial decisions that keep other things out of the comics.
  • How Grant Morrison was going to rewrite it all in the late 1990s.

Now, this was the late 1990s, so we had to dig up our historical data the old fashioned way.  But there were other things going on, so I did not delve as deeply as I should have.  Now, I know I made some mistakes, some less than sensitive choices which I regret.  Should I CH a new supers game, I will make a much greater effort to avoid such insensitivity, I am sure I will still make mistake but I will be more aware.

I liked the campaign world so much, I continued it with: The New Atlantians, using the ICONS rules and set in Atlanta, and the LA Stars, twice, using the Mutants & Masterminds and set in Los Angles.  Neither of which ran quite as long, with the New Atlantians only managing a single session.

As I love superheroes and the silver age so much, I really hope that I can get another campaign going probably using Masks: A New Generation this time around.

Back to Heroes Inc Roll Call.

Photo by Cecil E Burdick, Jr, on his trip to NYC in 1967, posted and copyrighted by his son.  See the full set here.

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Tuesday Magic Item – Cabinet of Repairs

11 February, 2020

Broken things in . . .Voddick sorted his broken bolts.  “See, I told you it was worthwhile collecting them.”

“Well, how was I to know that you were friends with a magical repairer?” replied Gollaon checking his arrows for breaks.

“Well,” Voddick leaned in, “not so much a friend as a distant cousin.  He has always been considered a little shady by my side of the family.”

“Ah,” nodded Gollaon, “that explains much.  So, we should be careful?”

Voddick nodded back.

Cabinet of Repairs

These cabinets come is a variety of shapes and sizes but are always well made, some are fancy, others are practical for hard use and travel.  The secrets to their manufacture has spread far and rise and they are very popular among armies, large households and traveling tinkers.

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Heroes Inc – Summaries of Issue 21 and 22

10 February, 2020

Heroes Incorporated, Summaries of Issues 21 and 22

(This story is refined as part of a “secret files” collection published in the 1990s filling in some continuity gaps.  It was decided by the players and the GM to be far to violent and dark to have been part of the ‘official’ 1960s continuity.)

“Fires of the New Sun”

The Heroes Inc team (Playboy, Human Jackrabbit, Plasma-man and the Cleaning Agent) are in Tokyo for the Olympics.  While at a dinner party, which includes the Soviet and Red Chinese representatives, it is attacked by a group of New Sun (Japanese) nationalists in powered armor who are trying the kill the communists.

The team stops them, but at great cost as the armor is equipped with ‘kamikaze’ bombs which exploded when the wearer was knocked unconscious.  Many guests were wounded after the first two attackers were killed, forcing the heroes to careful contain the others until the rest of the guests could be removed from the scene. [The Human Jackrabbit was able to use his new mega-scale running to get the wounded people to the hospital.]

Issue 21: Dragons of California

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